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Trying to fix up a 12.5 HP RER for my nephew. It was running really rough, so I pulled the carb and cleaned it out. Wouldn't start. Pulled the plug and gas poured out. It has a fuel shut-off valve, which was turned on. Turned off the fuel shut-off, and turned it over a few times to get the excess fuel out of the cylinder. After that, it started up just fine. Ran it around, and it ran great. Got it to my nephew's house, and it started surging like it would starve for fuel, and then catch up. This carb doesn't have a fuel shut-off solenoid, but I saw a little tab with nothing attached. I'm wondering if that is what it's for. I told my nephew to make sure and close the fuel shut-off after each use. Anyway, any thoughts as to what could cause the surging and the gas in the cylinder? Thanks.
 

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Trying to fix up a 12.5 HP RER for my nephew. It was running really rough, so I pulled the carb and cleaned it out. Wouldn't start. Pulled the plug and gas poured out. It has a fuel shut-off valve, which was turned on. Turned off the fuel shut-off, and turned it over a few times to get the excess fuel out of the cylinder. After that, it started up just fine. Ran it around, and it ran great. Got it to my nephew's house, and it started surging like it would starve for fuel, and then catch up. This carb doesn't have a fuel shut-off solenoid, but I saw a little tab with nothing attached. I'm wondering if that is what it's for. I told my nephew to make sure and close the fuel shut-off after each use. Anyway, any thoughts as to what could cause the surging and the gas in the cylinder? Thanks.
Yes. You need to post the engine model and type data so as we can get on the same page as to what you are looking at?

The needle and seat on the carb is leaking (seeping) and is common on gravity flow fuel systems. Usually if the engine is not running rich you can leave the needle seat as is and just use the fuel shutoff. (A seeping needle seat is not uncommon on some of the Briggs engine carbs and you will do more harm than good trying to stop seeping fuel from flooding the crankcase.


Also you mention NO fuel shutoff solenoid. The fuel solenoid when used is a antiback fire valve and will not prevent crankcase flooding due to a leaking needle and seat.

I would suggest you add a RED Briggs fuel filter between the manual shutoff and the carb, replace all the rubber fuel lines (due to shedding trash internally) and then remove the carb and clean it again. (trash has re-entered the carb bowl most likely. sometimes you can just remove the bowl while the carb is still on the engine, dump the trash, use low pressure air around the base of the carb and re-go.

To confirm that it's running lean you can sometimes remove the air breather and use you hand to restrict the air at the intake (applying some choke using your hand) and if it acts better you know it probably a lean carb.
 

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Thanks for the informative answer! The mower is at my nephew's house, so I will have to get the engine model and type as soon as I can. I have already ordered a red filter and new fuel line, and will replace them this weekend. Glad to hear that there is no issue with not having a shut-off solenoid. I'll give an update as soon as I can. Thanks!
 
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