Engine stalls, then won't restart for 3 or 4 hrs

Has anyone had this happen, I have replaced the fuel cap, fuel lines, filter and no luck, seems like it is vapor locked. Does it more in warm weather, not as often in winter, help! Will a new fuel pump help?

Update (10/10/2016)

1986 - 18 hp Koehler engine on craftman riding tractor - carburetor

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What engine? Fuel injection or carburetor?

Yeah bud, we need JUST a bit more info. Year, make, model and size engine would be very helpful. Thanks.

Any chance you can identify the engine a bit better. Got a number for it.?


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Steve, when it quits when hot, that would be a good time to test the fuel pump to see if it is faulty by pulling the line off carb. and turning engine over to see if it is indeed pumping fuel. Remove plug wires and make sure leads will not spark in vicinity of fuel, direct fuel hose into clean container and turn engine over 10-20 sec's. observe weather you are getting fuel. If pump does seem to be working, hook all back up.

Now with fuel that was pumped into the container you are going to do another check, remove air filter assy. pour about a 1/4 ounce of gas in carb. throat, start tractor. If it fires up your problem most likely is a dirty carburetor needing cleaned/rebuild. If it does not fire up, I would check for good spark/compression/valve clearance, safety switches faulty,oil sensor faulty if equipped, etc. Check the attached trouble shooting links,instruction and guides,manual. Good luck.

I hope this helped you out, if so let me know by pressing the helpful button.





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Special Insulation of the fuel pump and fuel lines and a vent to engine compartment to reduce the risk of Vapor lock, had this issue on my 2002 Camaro and added this, just wasn't as bad as your engine is.

If its vapor locked replacing a fuel pump etc...wont help because key is it starts so that rules out not anything supplying fuel, When high output engines run hot gas can evaporate quickly to build pressure inside of engine (expansion) and when its cool it contracts and gas turns to liquid again. Which explains why it starts better in cold weather.

Hope this helps.



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This is just a shot in the dark, actually from lawn mower repair. Has the gas cap been replaced and is the vent working? Does it seem like it is starving out when it quits?


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It is a lawn mower and I have replaced the fuel cap, filter, and fuel lines

Ok, you just originally posted this as an "engine" problem and didn't say anything about it being a lawn mower.


@wiscent yes it is possible that it is a bad fuel pump but I am not convinced of that. I'd look to the ignition system at this point. Take a good spark plug and keep it with you the next time you run your mower. Once the engine quits, pull a plug wire off one of the plugs and snap the spare plug into the wire. Carefully hold the threaded portion of the plug against the fins on the engine or other ground and turn the ignition key. See if you get spark. I would think you are having an issue with the ignition module or the coil getting hot and failing.


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