How To Test Lawn Mower Starter With Multimeter? [Updated Guide] 2023

Are you looking for how to test lawn mower starter with multimeter? Then you are in the right place. If your lawn mower won’t start, it may be due to a faulty starter motor or a bad solenoid.

To determine the source of the problem, you’ll need to use a multimeter and test both components. A multimeter is an electrical testing device that measures voltage, current, and circuit resistance. It’s also essential for diagnosing problems with wiring and other electrical components on your lawn mower.

Quick Guide

Start by removing the spark plug. Put the multimeter on the DC voltage range, ensuring it’s at the appropriate level. Connect the red probe to the starter’s positive terminal and the black probe to the engine’s negative terminal. Then, try starting the mower. A multimeter reading close to the mower’s battery voltage (12V) indicates that the starter is working properly. Having no voltage or a substantial drop may indicate that the starter or connections need to be inspected or repaired.

How does a lawn mower starter work?

In a lawn mower, the starter’s job is to start the engine. A pull cord or electric motor spins the flywheel of the engine. Starting the mower is achieved by creating the necessary combustion in the engine. Pulling the cord or engaging the electric starter triggers the engine’s ignition system, which ignites the fuel and air mixture, starting the engine. As the starter assembly engages with the flywheel, it rotates and initiates the engine’s starting process.

The starter assembly contains a recoil spring that stores energy when you pull the cord. When the cord is pulled, the stored energy is released, rapidly spinning the engine’s flywheel. Similar to electric starters, electric starters use an electric motor to turn the flywheel and begin combustion. As a result, these two systems provide the necessary force to efficiently start the lawn mower engine.

How To Test Lawn Mower Starter With Multimeter?

By following these steps, you can use your multimeter to test the starter on your lawn mower with relative ease.

What is a Multimeter and How Does It Work 

A multimeter is a device used to measure electrical properties such as voltage, resistance, and current. It can also measure the continuity of electrical circuits or components.

How To Test Lawn Mower Starter With Multimeter

Multimeters are essential for any mechanic working on lawnmowers or other small engine equipment. A multimeter can help diagnose issues with a starter motor quickly and accurately.

It can be used to test a variety of electronics, from home appliances to automobiles. It can also be used to test the starter on your lawn mower. A starter works with your lawn mower’s engine to turn it on when you press the starter button. To test a lawn mower starter, you must gather supplies and prepare your lawn mower for testing.

Read more about Best multimeter for home use Reviews

Step#1 Gather the Supplies Needed

To use a multimeter to test a lawn mower starter, you will need the following supplies:

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You will need a multimeter, an insulated screwdriver, electrical tape, and the owner’s manual for your specific model of lawn mower. Multimeters are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and prices.

Choose one with the functions you need and ensure it is rated for your specific testing needs. Your owner’s manual will provide all the necessary information about your lawn mower.

Step#2 Preparing the Lawn Mower for Testing

Before starting any electrical work, ensure the lawn mower is off and unplugged. Also, ensure that all the power sources, such as the battery, are disconnected. If you’re working on a riding mower, engage the parking brake before disconnecting the battery.

How To Test Lawn Mower Starter With Multimeter

Read your owner’s manual to locate any important safety information or instructions. You should also take a few minutes to inspect the condition of all exposed wires and connections. If you notice any breaks in the insulation, fraying or other signs of wear, replace them with new parts before testing.

Step#3 Locating the Starter Solenoid

Once the engine is turned off and all necessary supplies have been gathered, it’s time to locate the starter solenoid. The starter solenoid is a small electrical switch on or near the starter motor. 

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It typically looks like a small cylinder with two wires attached to it. The starter solenoid consists of two posts, a positive and a negative. Refer to your owner’s manual for the exact location of the solenoid on your specific lawn mower model. 

Step#4 Connecting the Multimeter to the Starter Solenoid

Next, you must set up your multimeter according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure your multimeter is set up correctly and that it is rated for your specific testing needs. 

Carefully remove one of the wires from the starter solenoid and attach it to one of the multimeter’s terminals. Then attach the other wire from the starter solenoid to the other multimeter terminal. Now you’re ready to begin testing.

Step#5 Interpreting the Results of Your Test

 With the multimeter connected, turn on your lawn mower and press the starter button. The multimeter should read “12V” or higher when you press the starter button and then drops back down to 0V once you release it. If the multimeter does not read 12V or higher, it may indicate a problem with the starter solenoid.

Step#6 Troubleshooting Common Lawn Mower Start Problems

If you find that the starter motor is not functioning properly, it’s important to troubleshoot the issue before replacing any parts. You may need to clean or replace the spark plug, replace the battery, or check the fuel lines for clogs and leaks. 

How To Test Lawn Mower Starter With Multimeter

The most common cause of electric starter failure is a loose or damaged connection on one of the starter solenoid posts. To check for these issues, use a Phillips head screwdriver to remove the post and inspect it for damage or corrosion. I hope you don’t have any question about how to test lawn mower starter with multimeter but if you have then check the video.

If there is any visible damage or corrosion, you can clean the connections using small pliers or wire cutters. If you cannot diagnose the problem yourself, take your lawn mower to a qualified repair shop for further inspection.

Remember always to follow the safety instructions in your owner’s manual, and if you are unsure about any part of the process, consult a qualified professional for help.

With these tips in mind, you can properly test your lawn mower starter and get it back up and running in no time. If you know more about how to test short circuits without a multimeter then, click here

How do I test the continuity of my lawn mower starter?

A multimeter can be used to check the continuity of a lawn mower starter by setting it to the continuity or ohms setting. The starter should be disconnected from the mower. For the solenoid and motor connections, the starter’s terminals are labeled “S” and “M.” The “S” terminal should be connected to the multimeter’s probe, and the “M” terminal should be connected to the starter’s metal housing. The multimeter will display a reading similar to zero or will beep when the circuit is intact if the reading is close to zero or if it beeps. Proceed to the “M” terminal by repeating the process. There might be a break in the circuit if there is no continuity on either terminal.

Ending Up

Knowing how to test lawn mower starter with multimeter is a simple process that can save you time and money in the long run. Always follow safety instructions, wear protective eyewear and gloves when doing electrical work, and never use more power than necessary. 

Refer to your owner’s manual for detailed instructions on how to test the starter solenoid, and always seek the help of a qualified professional if you are unsure about any part of the process. With these tips in mind, you can properly test your lawn mower starter and get it running smoothly once again.