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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When I start the generator it runs with very low RPM’s and a lot of smoke from exhaust. Playing with the choke doesn’t make much of a change. The fuel seems good. One thing I noticed when I turn off the fuel switch and the generator uses the gas in the line the very last 3 seconds it runs normal speed and then stops because the gas is depleted.
any ideas what could cause this?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The carb should be in excellent condition because I put a new one on last winter. It ran great when we lost power and all summer I started it for 10 minutes every other month so I was surprised when it ran very slow and blew out smoke. I think the float may be stuck as you said. I will get some time this week to look at that. Thanks
 

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It's running rich and given the symptoms you've provided, it appears to be a stuck choke or something else blocking the air intake.

Inspect the path of the air going into the carb. Inspect the filter housing if any of the vents are clogged or if any critters decided to make a cozy bedroom out of it. Check the condition of the air filter and confirm that it's dry and hasn't disintegrated and ended up blocking the carb intake. Visually confirm that moving the choke lever/knob closes and opens the choke butterfly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So far the choke seems ok, Nothing blocking the air so the next thing I will have to do is remove the carb and check the float. Is there a way to check the float without removing the carburetor, If I take the solenoid at the bottom off will I be able to drop the bowl and check it there? I am not sure if there is room and wondering if anyone has taken the lazy man's approach. :);)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks, I will try that. When I turn the gas switch off and the generator is going for the last 10 seconds it runs fine. Maybe that is telling me it's the float?

I will try that but I think I had the fuel on and went to lunch came back and no fuel was seen.
 

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The reason it starts running smoother during the last 10 seconds is that there's now less fuel in the bowl and it gets harder to suck in through the jets to be burned. So under normal conditions, that engine is running rich and the only time it ran right is when it's running literally on fumes.

Was there work done on this generator previously? Although the float bares some checking, I am not convinced that it's the problem... particularly if there's no apparent leak coming from the carb. Fuel is metered through the jets and unless fuel pressure is very high (ie. if it has a fuel pump), I don't think it would affect the A/F mixture that much. IMHO, you can't have it running rich and NOT leaking, if it's a float problem.

I'd look at the other usual suspects:

1. Stuck choke or not opening fully / air intake blockage - DONE
2. Has the air-fuel mix set screw (if equipped) been messed with?
3. Were the main jet and/or pilot jet been cleaned OR replaced and inadvertently ended up with bigger orifices?
4. Is the emulsion tube installed or intact?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
@OrlyP thanks for the detailed message. No work has been done to the generator since last year at this time. I put a new carb on it last year. I will answer your questions below
1, done
2, No, it’s never been touched and the generator ran great for 2 days over the winter after the carb install.
3, No, I have not taken off the carb at all. I plan on looking at it tomorrow.
4, Yes I would think the emulsion tube is ok but maybe just clogged, I will look.

Thanks
 

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It could be that your choke is not operating properly. On the 3500 you pull the choke control rod out which closes the choke butterfly when starting. As soon as the engine starts, the choke butterfly is opened automatically by a choke lever attached to a diaphragm. If it doesn't open automatically, the engine runs rich like you described. It's easy to get the choke actuator gizmo installed all wrong when replacing or cleaning the carb. I know this for sure. Open up your air cleaner to where you can watch the choke close and open when starting to see if it's working.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thank you all for your comments, I appreciate all your help. I ended up removing the air cleaner box and carburetor removed the float and checked everything over in that area. The choke was working fine but just taking everything apart and cleaning the float area seemed to do the trick. Once I put everything back together it started fine and ran for 15 minutes without any issues.
I appreciate all your help.
Thank you!
 
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