10 Causes of a Briggs & Stratton Snowblower Not Starting (FIX IT)

Having a snowblower will allow you to clear your driveway and walkways, making it easier to get in and out of your house during snowstorms.

If your snowblower won’t turn on when it’s needed, you might as well stay put if there’s a lot of snow outside. Locate the source of the starting issue and rectify it, or you will be reduced to using a manual snow shovel.

Empty fuel tank, old gas, faulty spark plug, clogged fuel line, dirty carburetor, faulty starter, bad fuel cap, or improper starting procedures can prevent a Briggs & Stratton snowblower from starting.

Before attempting any repairs, the spark plug must be removed. Follow the instructions in the manual to ensure your safety.

Briggs & Stratton Snowblower
Briggs & Stratton Snowblower

Before diagnosing, repairing, or operating your equipment, read the operator’s manual thoroughly. Consult a professional if you lack the necessary skills or knowledge, or if you are unable to perform the repair safely.

Explanations Your Briggs and Stratton Snowblower Will Not Start

Briggs and Stratton snowblower’s improper starting and operating procedure

Running Briggs and Stratton snowblower can be challenging. It is only used for a brief period of time before being stored for the remainder that year. Your snowblower might not start if you don’t perfect the starting procedure.

Prior to moving on to looking for other issues preventing your snowblower from starting, ensure you have followed these five procedures for starting it:

  • Turn on or leave the fuel closed valve open.
  • Ensure that the ignition coil is turned to the on position and the ignition is inserted. Make sure the toggle switch is in the on position if snowblower doesn’t use an ignition switch. Some snowblowers demand the insertion of a safety key before use.
  • Turn on the snowblower’s full throttle.
  • Set the accelerator to 34% of the maximum setting.
  • After starting your snowblower, adjust the choke to allow more air in so that it continues to operate.

Briggs and Stratton snowblower’s fuel tank is empty.

You are aware that a gas-powered snowblower needs gas to operate. I only bring it up now because you might have simply overlooked it when you were trying to figure out what was wrong with your startup.

It’s very easy to forget to add gasoline when you don’t use your snowblower frequently.

It’s possible that you don’t remember when you last filled the fuel tank, that you have a fuel leak and are losing gas, or that the fuel gauge has stopped working.


To find any fuel leaks or a broken fuel gauge, examine the fuel system. Replace any broken parts with new ones.

For your particular engine type, fill the fuel tank with new fuel. Avoid using fuel designed for a 2-cycle engine in a 4-cycle vehicle or a 4-cycle fuel in a 2-cycle vehicle. Find out more about the fuel your snowblower should run on here.

  • 4-Cycle Engine: Add with brand-new, 87 octane or higher fuel. Select a gas that has no more than 10% ethanol.A 4-cycle engine powers the majority of the latest Briggs and Stratton snowblower models. One fill port is for gasoline, and the other is for engine oil.. If you are unclear of the engine type of your snowblower, see the operator’s manual.
  • 2-Cycle Engine: Add with an oil and gas mixture that complies with Briggs & Stratton’s recommended oil to gas ratio. A single fill port for both gasoline and oil is a sign that you are using a 2-cycle engine. On the gasoline cap., or in your operator’s manual, may be a listing of the fuel-to-oil mix ratio. The gas-to-oil ratio needed for modern Briggs and Stratton 2-cycle engines is 50:1, but the ratio needed for older ones is 32:1.

Fuel in a Briggs and Stratton snowblower is either faulty or outdated.

Your snow blower may not start if gas is not properly kept and is used up as soon as it is still fresh. This is due to the fact that gas starts to degrade and lose effectiveness within 30 days after the purchase.

The majority of gasoline varieties sold at your neighborhood gas station include ethanol, an alternative fuel made from corn that is added to make fuel slightly more environmentally friendly.

Despite being more environmentally friendly, ethanol won’t function well with the Briggs & Stratton snowblower’s little motor.

The moisture in the air is drawn to ethanol. Combining ethanol with water causes the fuel system, especially the carburetor, to corrode and become gummed up.

As a result, make sure you only use unleaded fuel with an octane value of 87 or less and a maximum ethanol level of 10%. The better, the lower the ethanol concentration.

Avoid fuels labeled as E15, E30, and E85 because they contain 15%, 30%, and 85% ethanol, respectively.

Fuel must be used within 30 days. Add a fuel additive to stabilize the gas and cut down on moisture if you bought more gasoline than you can use in this amount of time.

To further safeguard my fuel system and engine, I always decide to add a fuel stabilizer to each tank of fuel. Because I can’t predict how much snow will fall, I can never be sure how soon I’ll burn up a tank of petrol.

When my fuel gets a touch stale, using a high-quality fuel stabilizer keeps me from having to empty it and replace it with new fuel.


  • Make use of a fuel siphon to drain the old fuel. To assist clean the fuel system and get rid of moisture, add new gasoline with a fuel additive.
  • The addition of Sea Foam is recommended, especially after using old gas in your snowblower. Read my post on “The Best Fuel Additive for Your Snowblower” to discover more about the benefits of utilizing sea foam in your engine. STA-BIL is a nice alternative as well.

Briggs and Stratton Snowblower has a bad fuel cap.

In order for the ambient pressure to match the tank pressure, the gasoline tank needs to be able to vent. The gasoline tank can create a vacuum when it is unable to vent, which prevents gas from reaching the carburetor.

Through the gas cap, a Briggs & Stratton snowblower vents. The fuel system is starved of fuel when this vent is blocked or damaged, and the snowblower won’t operate.

Loosen the gas cap, start the snowblower, and that should tell you if you have a vent issue.

There’s a good probability your fuel cap is not venting properly if it starts and runs without any problems, but after reinstalling the cap and letting it run for a bit, it starts to run slowly or quits.

Solution:  Your snowblower’s gas cap has to be replaced.

Briggs and Stratton snowblower may have a bad spark plug or a loose connection.

Your snowblower needs a good spark plug to start. The spark plug may not produce spark if it is filthy or broken. The starting mechanism may also have issues due to a defective spark plug gap or a loose spark plug wire.


  • To check for carbon buildup, a broken porcelain insulator, or a burned electrode, remove your spark plug. Make sure the electrode gap meets the manufacturer’s requirements by checking it.
  • If the porcelain insulator is shattered, the electrode is scorched, or the spark plug is too dirty to clean with a wire brush, replace it with a new spark plug.
  • Verify if the gap is accurate.
  • Place the spark plug in.
  • Once the repairs are complete, firmly fasten the spark plug wire.

Blockage in Your Briggs and Stratton Snowblower’s Fuel Line

Deposits from old fuel can clog fuel lines and impede the flow of fuel. Your Briggs & Stratton snowblower won’t start or run if the fuel tank is empty.


  • Use the fuel shut-off valve or pinch-off pliers to halt the flow of fuel and look for obstructions.
    Choose a portion of the gasoline line that has to be checked. Remove the line’s end that is closest to the fuel tank and put it in a container that is positioned underneath the fuel tank.
  • Open the fuel supply.
  • If the fuel line is clogged and you can’t get a sufficient flow, cut the line off at the other end so it doesn’t connect to your snowblower. Don’t forget to stop off the fuel supply by using clamps or the fuel shut-off valve to prevent fuel from leaking on your floor.
  • Spray carburetor cleaner into the fuel line while it is detached from the snowblower, and then use compressed air to blow air through the line until it is clear of debris and gooey residues. Continue doing this until the limitation is lifted.
  • If the fuel pipe is still clogged or is starting to dry out and crack, replace it with a new one.

The Briggs and Stratton snowblower you own has a clogged and dirty carburetor.

Because it controls how much air and fuel are combined at the proper ratio to produce a combustion, the carburetor is crucial to the proper operation of your snowblower. Your snowblower may not run if the carburetor and its parts become clogged with dirt.

By disassembling the carburetor and applying carburetor cleaner, you may clean the entire carburetor, including the float bowl and needle.

Solution: Cleaning the Carburetor on a Briggs and Stratton Snowblower

  • Reduce carbon buildup by misting carb cleaning. In the air intake, spray some carb cleaning. Check to see whether the engine will start. We need to access the carburetor if your snowblower starts up but then won’t continue to run.
  • Get pliers, screwdrivers, sockets, and ratchets ready so you can disassemble the carburetor without damaging any components.
  • Take a picture to aid in assembly. Nowadays, the majority of individuals have a useful camera on their phones. It’s a very excellent idea to take a picture of the carburetor so you have a reference if you forget how to put it back together after disassembling it. Make sure to take a picture of the linkage and springs being reinstalled on the carburetor.
  • If your snowblower has one, remove the choke cord and throttle cable.
  • Take care not to overstretch the springs as you slowly remove them. To remove the springs, you might need to slightly rotate the carb. At this point, be careful not to rip the gasket. This is the gasket that connects the carburetor to the engine block.
  • From the float bowl, remove the bottom screw. Inside the carburetor, gasoline is kept in the float bowl. Have a rag ready to capture the gas because it should be filled with gas.
  • Take care not to harm the o-ring surrounding the bowl as you remove it. Precaution: Avoid getting any chemical, including carb cleaner, on the o-ring. You won’t be able to reuse it since it will stretch out.
  • Check for plugged holes in the stem. This stem, which has perforations in it, swings downward from the carburetor’s center. Old fuel can be used to block these holes so that fuel cannot be drawn up to the jet.
  • Take a thick wire and use it to clear out the holes if they are clogged. Use a flashlight so you can see what you’re doing better. After cleaning the holes, rinse them with carb cleaner.
  • Check the carburetor for a buildup of hard, white crust. This whitish accumulation is made up of ethanol and other fuel additives. The white power substance needs to be removed as much as you can. It’s quite difficult to get everything out.
  • Now that the carburetor is clean, reassemble it.
  • Reassemble it in the opposite direction from how you took it apart. When putting the carburetor back together, keep in mind to refer to the photo you took of it to ensure that all of the pieces are put back where they go.
    Before using your snowblower, add new fuel that has a fuel stabilizer. Fuel should be poured into the tank and given time to fill the carburetor’s bowl. Activate the engine.
    Give the rope a yank if you are starting with a pull cord. It might not start on the first draw, but after a few pulls, it should start and continue to run.

A Briggs and Stratton snowblower’s electric starter is defective.

Your snowblower won’t start or turn over when you turn the key in the starting switch or flip the toggle switch to on. It’s possible that the starter switch is malfunctioning.


  • To test the starter switch, use a multimeter. If faulty, replace the switch.

Briggs and Stratton snowblower’s engine has to be primed.

Without an electric or battery start, Briggs & Stratton snowblower machines must be primed to get the fuel from the fuel lines into the carburetor. The snowblower should ideally be started without priming, in my opinion.

Sometimes it doesn’t need to be primed, and if it isn’t necessary, I don’t want to prime it and fill my snowblower with gasoline.


  • If your snowblower won’t begin without priming, try pressing the primer bulb a couple of times to help the engine get going. This will facilitate the engine’s ability to fuel the carburetor.
  • Avoid flooding your engine by not over-priming it by putting too much fuel in the carburetor.

Briggs & Stratton Pull Start Snowblower Has Bad Recoil

Many Briggs and Stratton snowblowers start with a recoil rather than an electric key. As soon as you pull the starter rope, your snowblower won’t start if the recoil has a broken pulley or spring.


  • You could try changing the spring & restringing the recoil. It is better to merely replace the recoil assembly if it doesn’t work because other parts of your recoil, pulley and clips are damaged.

Don’t Start a Briggs And Stratton Snowblower with Starter Fluid

When a piece of equipment won’t start, users frequently check the starting liquid first. I do not at anyway recommend doing this. Because starting fluid can damage engines, I actually detest it so much that I forbid it at my repair shop.

The starting fluid’s chemical is quite dry. The dry chemical’s extreme dryness and lack of lubricant make it potentially harmful to internal engine components.

In my opinion, you should begin your snowblower with carburetor cleaner. The article “Don’t Apply Starter Fluid on a Snowblower: Use This Instead” describes the benefits of carburetor cleaner and how to apply it.