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Discussion Starter #1
Well...I got my R322TX back from the B&S service centre. Turns out it was bad gas (from the Husqvarna dealer, not me)...possibly 2 stroke fuel they had in it. That's another story.

Now she finally starts nice, and smoke on startup is fairly non-existent. Though it still runs very rich. Hence the title of my post.

I did a quick plow this morning before work, it was only -3C out and a nice 2-3 inches of snow perfect for the blade (more than that I'll run the blower). I ran at about 3/4 throttle as the fuel was low...and by the time I was done, I literally had the taste of fuel in my mouth. Tasted it all morning at work still. Gross.

Over the last few days I ran through a few tanks. This thing DRINKS the fuel, a full tank at full rpm is good for about 45 minutes. Wow.

It's like the machine is still running rich. I'm wondering if I can jet the thing down...i'm at 2000ft above sea level and I assume they jet for 0ft above sea. Anyone know if there is a jet kit for these things from Husqvarna?
 

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You might be able to get a kit from B&S, based on the engine model info...

But I would first run some seafoam through the carb, perhaps take out the spark plugs and make sure they are clean, as running mixed fuel through the carb/engine doesn't do the carb any favors.
 

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+1 on Seafoam. Perhaps running at less than WOT might have something to do with it. Unless I'm engaging the PTO, I run WOT as that is how they are designed to be used.

Also, B&S like to use Champion spark plugs but they are not the best brand to use. I always switch to NGK when it is time for a plug change. Lots of folks have personal preferences and I've heard people call NGK the "No Good Kind" but they have worked well for me on several B&S motors. I've seen where a motor ran poorly on brand new Champions and the used NGKs I put back worked better.

I had a GMC pickup that the factory used AC brand plugs. When I changed them to Champion plugs at 60,000 miles it ran terrible so I put the ACs back in until I could get to a store that sold AC.

On my Arctic Cat snow machine, I was going through Champion plugs like a chain smoker goes through cigarettes. I switched to Bosch and never looked back. Only used Bosch in my chainsaws as well.

See a pattern here? I hate Champion plugs.
 

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... Perhaps running at less than WOT might have something to do with it. Unless I'm engaging the PTO, I run WOT as that is how they are designed to be used.....
Simply running at any throttle level has very-little, to nothing to do with efficiency & fuel consumption. The load on the engine is the primary driver for fuel consumption.

The jet in the carb meters the fuel, based on airflow from the throttle-plate which changes position with 2 inputs: 1. throttle lever setting, 2. governor input which regulates speed based on actual load.
This means that when the engine is not doing any work, the throttle plate is almost closed - despite the fact that the engine is actually running in high-rpm. When the throttle plate is almost closed, the jet does not disperse much fuel into the airflow... meaning low fuel consumption. All of this is "relatively speaking".

So... what's the solution?... it sounds that it runs rich, or that it suffers from incomplete combustion. There are 2 primary causes for this: 1. fuel mixture too rich; 2. bad or weak spark.
#1 has to drivers: (a) too much fuel is being jet'ed - ie wrong carb model for the engine, or wrong jet installed (b) bowl-float doesnt shut pump fuel flow off, resulting in overflow - which then overflows into the engine.
#2 - bad spark plug, wrong spark plug, bad ignition wire, weak ingition system etc.

there is another choice: bad engine design.... all depends I guess...

cheers!
 

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If you are running WOT and working the engine so that the governor is allowing the engine to get more fuel it doesn't take long in any machine. I can do about 2 hrs with mine like that working the blade in heavy snow or the snowblower in deep snow.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I might try changing the plugs. Cheap and easy to see.

I'm going to see is husqvarna has a jet kit to drop a size. I think one size down would help. I'd imagine they jet at 0ft. I'm at 2000ft.

Heaven forbid they ever put EFI on. I really doubt it costs that much now-a-days and we wouldn't need this electronic choke junk...nor would you ever have to swap a bad carb out.
 

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Didn't know premix was a problem for carbs. For years, I ran my walk-behind mowers almost exclusively on old premix that I'd dumped out of other machines like my chainsaw and backpack blower, never once had a problem.

That mower really only got used a few times a year (by me) in the spring and fall, mostly brush hogging in places I didn't want to risk hitting a rock or stump with the tractor deck. And, I saved it from the dump after my Dad used it to cut his lawn with it for years. I doubt he ever even changed the oil in it.

Mike
 

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Over the last few days I ran through a few tanks. This thing DRINKS the fuel, a full tank at full rpm is good for about 45 minutes. Wow.
Are you basing this just on the number of fill-ups or litres? I think the tank volume at 12 litres is small. I don't know the volume of my Craftsman. I only have a general feeling as to how long I can go on a fill-up. One thing I do know is when I am doing Fall clean-up, I go through lots of gas.

With the hard starting in the cold, I am going to look into replacing the spark plugs. I do know it made a big difference on my Craftsman.
 

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I've never been a fan of Champion spark plugs,though they do seem to work ok in some engines..the ones that have copper core electrodes seem better than the older ones previous to the late 1980s,but I also have a few that are as old as the engines they were in,made in the 1950's that still work good..

I prefer AC or Autolite plugs in my vehicles and small engines,they do not seem to foul as easily--usually if you flood a Champion plug,its dead for good,the engine will refuse to fire again at all--AC and Autolite's will fire again once the excess fuel evaporates..

I had a C110 Honda motorcycle back in the late 70's with a 50 cc engine..that thing would only run with an NGK plug,but every few weeks it would suddenly spit back thru the carb,and stall,and you could kick it over or push start it for a mile and it refused to even attempt to fire again...put in a fresh plug,and it would start right up--and do the same thing over and over..had great blue spark too!..

Only place that sold the NGK brand was a Honda dealer 15 miles away,and my dad soon tired of hauling me there to buy new spark plugs ($5.99 each too!)--so I decided to try buying plugs from a parts store,all they could get was Champion plugs that crossed over to the NGK number--but the problem was they could only get a box of 10,they didn't want to have most of them sitting on the shelf,so I had to hand over $30 to get 10 of them..

Those plugs were tiny 10mm thread ones and they died within a hour or two of riding!..was lucky to get a week out of one,and not have the cycle die far out in the woods where I rode it..that soured me on Champions,I had several mowers I rescued from the dump that fired right up after I took the Champion plug out and put in an AC or Autolite too..had engines that ran erratically suddenly run perfect after ditching the Champion plug too--when you only have one cylinder,you need a GOOD spark plug!..

I never liked NGK plugs much either,the high cost and lack of availability back then was a discouragement...my friend gave them the nick-name "no good krap" after his dirt bike would foul one in one weekend,never to fire again..maybe they are better now,I haven't used any in decades..

I throw away any spark plug that has "LAWN MOWER" or no brand name on them,those are notorious for not being any good and cause all sorts of weird running issues--if it even starts..had many push mower come roaring back to life after ditching those cheap plugs..had no real luck with the "Split-Fire" ones either..they seem to run great for awhile,then start giving trouble..
 

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At work there was a natural gas powered stand-by generator that had a B&S engine with Champion plugs. I figured with natural gas, it would be clean burning so the plugs would last but the darned thing would run rough, even with brand new Champion plugs. I had the mechanic swap them with NGK and it ran smooth.

I had a Arctic Cat Panther sled with a float carb in it. Why Arctic Cat would ever put a float carb on it is beyond me. Anytime I put the sled over on its side, it would flood and that would be the end of the spark plug. Only way to get back home was to walk or change the plug. Nothing you could do would ever resurrect the plug. Tried all different brands and had the best luck with Bosch.

I have a 30 year old Troy Bilt tiller with a B&S engine and I think it still has the original spark plug. It starts every time on the first pull and runs well.
 

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Is it the right one?

Mike
 

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It is what is spec'd in the owner's manual. I assume it is the original factory installed plug but since I bought it with 15 hours on it, I cannot be 100% sure.

When cross-referencing it to an NGK, I would consider going with a slightly hotter plug. I might chose a replacement that is a tad shorter as well. I was taught that having exposed thread could be a pre-ignition hotspot. If nothing else, carbon buildup on the plug thread gets dragged through the threads in the head which does it no good.
 

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What he said, I'd try a new set of NGK or Denso, if they still look like that maybe go 1 heat range hotter.

I'd heard the 322's were all fuel hungry, but you should not be smelling it. could be running too rich, if carbed, may need work or simply dirty air filter? Or it could be bad/old plug wires causing misfires and you're smelling the unburned fuel.

As for the plug reaching into the cylinder too far, that does not look right, but I see that now and then, iirc plugs in my Celica come out looking like that. I'd always thought it looked like a stripped spark plug hole waiting to happen. Maybe double up on the plug gasket or add a washer between the gasket and plug? Some brands, the gaskets come off easily, others not. They used to sell precision spacers for indexing the spark plugs on race cars so each one had the electrode in the exact same place... https://ngksparkplugs.com/en/resources/gapping-and-indexing

I'd also verify battery voltage and charging and plug gap. Had a serious hard-starting issue for a couple years on a Honda motorcycle due to weak charging and the battery never getting fully charged. Ran OK once started, but the plugs would come out black in a few hundred miles. Simply decreasing the spark plug gap to .028 from .034 made a world of difference in starting, running and plug life. Eventually installed a new stator and rectifier and that did cure the actual cause.

lots of spark plug info here, interesting reading https://ngksparkplugs.com/en/category/resources
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well, good news! Or at least I think.

I was able to confirm with Briggs Tech Support that indeed there IS a high altitude jet kit available. This would DECREASE the jet size by just a fraction, hopefully reducing my fuel consumption and decreasing the fuel odor from the tailpipe.

Briggs says this is suggested for altitudes over 2500ft above sea level. I'm 2200, so I think it will be ok.

I've not looked at my plugs yet, but I assume they are on the darker side as everyone else is also posting.

Curious what others are at for elevation...if your near 2500ft or above, you might want to consider this!
 
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