Replacing fuel filters in small engines has many benefits. The design purpose of fuel filters is to properly filter gas before it reaches the carburetor of your lawnmower, snow blower, or equipment. Replacing fuel filters is important because it can prevent debris from clogging your engine. A dirty fuel filter can cause your engine to run too lean, which can result in decreased performance and uneven operation. Fuel filters are located inside the fuel tank or in the fuel line between the tank and the fuel pump. Some engines have internal, non-serviceable fuel filters.
When replacing fuel filters, make sure you are in a safe area without open flames or sources of ignition. Wear safety glasses when removing or inspecting the filter to protect your eyes from liquid fuel or fuel vapors. Prepare a dry cloth to hold the filter and catch any dripping fuel.
If the filter is installed inside the fuel tank, you need to drain the tank first before removing the fuel filter for inspection or replacement. Close the fuel valve (if equipped). It is located at the bottom of the tank and connects to the fuel line. If your tank does not have a valve, use a fuel line clamp to clamp the gas line. Do not clamp the fuel line as it could damage it.
If your filter is installed in the fuel line, use pliers to remove the metal clamps on both sides of the fuel filter, then slide the filter out of the fuel line. Shake the filter on a clean cloth to displace any remaining fuel, then wipe away any residues on the outside of the filter with the cloth. Hold the filter at a safe distance from your face and look through one end. You should be able to see light passing through from the other side. If debris clogs the mesh screen, pleats, or inside the housing, replace the old filter with a new one.
When replacing fuel filters, be sure to reconnect the metal clamps on both sides of the filter. When the fuel filter is secured, remove the clamp on the fuel line or reopen the fuel valve. Check for leaks. If any are found, do not operate the machine. Note that fuel lines can crack and will deteriorate over time due to component wear. Before starting, operating, or servicing your engine or equipment, be sure to read the engine and equipment manual to avoid personal injury or property damage. If you are unsure of any procedure or have other questions, consult an authorized dealer.