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post #1 of 45 Old 09-16-2019, 06:21 PM Thread Starter
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Gas / float needle mystery.

Wondering if anyone has an explanation for this.

Drained oil out of warm tank. Added in recommended oil ounces.

Put some gas in tank, rode it for a bit. Checked oil after 15 min, was up almost an inch on dipstick. Smelled like gas. Chalked it up to float not shutting completely. Mower has been sitting for a while, so cleaned the carb (was dirty) paying Attn to float/seat area. Removed some fluid to prevent hydrolock. Fluid back at recommended level on dipstick. Reinstall carb.

Added more gas (just a bit) and started mower, rode a bit. Shut it off. Gas level is just above the port to exit tank and go into tube.

Looked at dipstick, up 1/4 inch over full. About a half inch from where it was before I started it.

Left for a day.

Gas tank is dry, dipstick is back to proper level.

What the heck is the deal? Any clues? It runs fine otherwise.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 45 Old 09-16-2019, 09:44 PM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

The needle and are not shutting off properly because the rubber is hard and old and the seat is pitted from the nasty gas we have today.
The correct fix is to replace both needle and seat or replace carburetor.
Many people just put a new needle valve in )this is assuming we are talking about a carb with a rubber tipped needle and not one with the rubber eat up in the hole) and sometimes this fixes it but often only for a while.
You can also get better or extended results by polishing the seat with q-tips and fine valve lapping compound or toothpaste and/or metal polish.
Better but not the best fix.
Most carbs have a brass pressed in seat that you make a puller to pull out then drive the new on in then use a new inlet needle and you are goo to go for a decent long while.
Still helps a lot to use ethanol free fuel if readily available and/or add fuel stabilizer like Sta Bil to fuel.
It helps keep the rubber softer and reduces pitting of the seat sealing area.

A work-around is to put a fuel shut off on the fuel line but IF you ever forget to turn it off, you may come back to a crankcase full of gas.
I always forget sooner rather than later so I fix them.
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post #3 of 45 Old 09-17-2019, 07:07 AM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TobyU View Post
The needle and are not shutting off properly because the rubber is hard and old and the seat is pitted from the nasty gas we have today.
The correct fix is to replace both needle and seat or replace carburetor.
Many people just put a new needle valve in )this is assuming we are talking about a carb with a rubber tipped needle and not one with the rubber eat up in the hole) and sometimes this fixes it but often only for a while.
You can also get better or extended results by polishing the seat with q-tips and fine valve lapping compound or toothpaste and/or metal polish.
Better but not the best fix.
Most carbs have a brass pressed in seat that you make a puller to pull out then drive the new on in then use a new inlet needle and you are goo to go for a decent long while.
Still helps a lot to use ethanol free fuel if readily available and/or add fuel stabilizer like Sta Bil to fuel.
It helps keep the rubber softer and reduces pitting of the seat sealing area.

A work-around is to put a fuel shut off on the fuel line but IF you ever forget to turn it off, you may come back to a crankcase full of gas.
I always forget sooner rather than later so I fix them.
Fix it and also install a fuel shutoff and a red Briiggs fuel filter

Also replace all the fuel lines.
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post #4 of 45 Old 09-17-2019, 07:50 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Hi Toby and Forest,

Thanks for the responses. I know about the needles / seats going bad, i've replaced before.

I'm just wondering what would cause the 'oil' level to go up significantly, whatever (albeit small amount of) leftover gas is in the engine to disappear (evaporation, that fast?) after 24 hrs, but hten for the 'oil' level to sink back down to the recommended level. It's not like i tested the oil level right after i shut the thing off, i waited about 2 hrs after I turned it off (quarter inch above 'full') then 24 hr later it was right in the sweet spot.

it's just weird. would it really take that long to get an accurate level? i usually just wait 10-15 min.

yeah the shutoff valves are my best friend, i always have extras laying around, i'll be putting one on this for sure. unfortunately, it won't correct the problem if it's not closing while i'm running hte mower..

thanks.
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post #5 of 45 Old 09-17-2019, 11:11 AM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Don't know the exact answer to your question about gas being gone out of the tank but oil level ok. Usually gas does not evaporate very fast out of the oil, but we know you have a needle and seat that is leaking really bad. Make sure the float is good.

Fix one thing at a time and maybe your question will be answered while or after the fix of the carb dumping gas into the oil.
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post #6 of 45 Old 09-17-2019, 01:47 PM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

It is possible the fuel, if there was some present, could have evaporated from a 'warm' engine, or stored in hot weather(sun shine on metal shed==high temps).
It is also possible the level was actually not measured correctly on the dipstick.
Sometimes 'drool' down the sides of the filler neck will appear on the dipstick throwing the measurement off, indicating higher levels than are true.
I have one setup that decided to drizzle most of a tank of fuel onto the garage floor. It got both a new needle & seat, AND a cutoff valve. I value my preservation such that I try to never forget to close the petcock upon shutdown. It's easy to remember to open it because the engine will not start until it is opened. Perhaps the fuel in the float bowl evaporates or is non-suctionable into the venturi until the petcock opens, but I must open it or the engine won't start.
The black/red B&S versions work, but seem to be priced as if the plastic was made from virgin Naugas, or similar. I guess worth it at the price they ask, though grudgingly.
Years ago I bought an ignition key, and have not taken it out of the lock cylinder in 20+ years. If I attached a dummy petcock to the keyring, it might remind me to use the petcock when I switched the engine to OFF. Or not.
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post #7 of 45 Old 09-17-2019, 04:34 PM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomw0 View Post
It is possible the fuel, if there was some present, could have evaporated from a 'warm' engine, or stored in hot weather(sun shine on metal shed==high temps).
It is also possible the level was actually not measured correctly on the dipstick.
Sometimes 'drool' down the sides of the filler neck will appear on the dipstick throwing the measurement off, indicating higher levels than are true.
I have one setup that decided to drizzle most of a tank of fuel onto the garage floor. It got both a new needle & seat, AND a cutoff valve. I value my preservation such that I try to never forget to close the petcock upon shutdown. It's easy to remember to open it because the engine will not start until it is opened. Perhaps the fuel in the float bowl evaporates or is non-suctionable into the venturi until the petcock opens, but I must open it or the engine won't start.
The black/red B&S versions work, but seem to be priced as if the plastic was made from virgin Naugas, or similar. I guess worth it at the price they ask, though grudgingly.
Years ago I bought an ignition key, and have not taken it out of the lock cylinder in 20+ years. If I attached a dummy petcock to the keyring, it might remind me to use the petcock when I switched the engine to OFF. Or not.
tom
Yep, them Red Briggs fuel filter are expensive, but I boughtabout dozen from flea bay for the price of one Briggs and every one of them started seeping at the glue joint and the China fuel shutoffs will also come apart. (need to report this to Donald, may need a tariff increase.

By the way what is virgin Naugas?
It's not in my redneck dictionary
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post #8 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 08:51 AM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

The virgin Nauga comes from the Nauga hide.. Commonly used to cover seat cushions and padded chairs. If you get virgin Nauga it has never been used before.

I bought a ten-pack of shutoffs, and so far so good. They seem to be a dupe of the B&S valves. Longevity? Throw a dart towards a calendar, and when it hits the floor, they may expire...
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post #9 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 09:25 AM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

The rare virgin Nauga, an endangered species although I've read they have made a comeback due to selective breeding in captivity.
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post #10 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 11:01 AM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomw0 View Post
The virgin Nauga comes from the Nauga hide.. Commonly used to cover seat cushions and padded chairs. If you get virgin Nauga it has never been used before.

I bought a ten-pack of shutoffs, and so far so good. They seem to be a dupe of the B&S valves. Longevity? Throw a dart towards a calendar, and when it hits the floor, they may expire...
tom
I did the same and also a pack of the red fuel filters. Looked like the Briggs stuff, Keep a heads up, the shutoffs did not last very long, valves come out of the housing and the fuel filter started a slow drip from the glued together joints.

Not safe for eq that is stored inside a building or garage when gas starts leaking.
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post #11 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, so I looked at this some more today. Pulled off the carb to do a pressure test on the needle to see how it looked. There might be a little bit of a leak, but if there is, it's nothing much.

But what really caught my attention --
4 hours after I pulled off the carb, I decided to look at the oil level. It was an inch over the full line. I was confused because the last time I looked at it, it was dead on proper level.

So I just said forget it and left it alone. 2 HR later, it was back at the normal level.

I'm going crazy here. What might cause it to do that? Yes it is outside but the weather hasn't changed much and there has been no rain.
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post #12 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 10:04 PM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

A aircraft mechanic told me there is such a thing as oil creep. He claimed oil will move up on the dipstick. That said I think you should get same level if you always test after wiping the stick clean before testing. Maybe remove the tube and see oil level relevant to the grommet and see if it varies over time.
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post #13 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 11:27 PM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brmm View Post
Yeah, so I looked at this some more today. Pulled off the carb to do a pressure test on the needle to see how it looked. There might be a little bit of a leak, but if there is, it's nothing much.

But what really caught my attention --
4 hours after I pulled off the carb, I decided to look at the oil level. It was an inch over the full line. I was confused because the last time I looked at it, it was dead on proper level.

So I just said forget it and left it alone. 2 HR later, it was back at the normal level.

I'm going crazy here. What might cause it to do that? Yes it is outside but the weather hasn't changed much and there has been no rain.
Yes, you are going crazy.. Lol.
All that matters is the level before you start it like after it has been sitting overnight or for a week. Pull the stick, wipe it off, re-insert and check level.
Often oil is so clean it is hard to see the level, esp with the very clear Kohler brand oil.
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post #14 of 45 Old 09-18-2019, 11:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

i'm seeing it clearly. i'm holding it in sunlight and it's easy to see where the level sits.

i wonder... maybe i'm spinning it too fast to unscrew the dipstick and the oil inside is being spiraled up as it turns.

i'll need to try it out tomorrow. aside from that, i have no idea what it could be...

goign nuts.
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post #15 of 45 Old 09-19-2019, 01:09 AM
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Re: Gas / float needle mystery.

Pressure in the block can push oil up a dip stick tubes... Seen it happen many times.
Also engines with block mounted fuel pumps can leak gas into the block.


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