Toro Click But Won’t Start – Why And What To Do?

Your Toro lawn mower needs regular maintenance to ensure its excellent performance. However, if a problem occurs, some factors cause the engine to misfire. Does your lawn mower click but won't start? We found the answer to this question.

Here are several possible reasons why a Toro lawn mower clicks but won't start:

  • Empty or old gas.
  • The air vent has clogged.
  • Dirty spark plug.
  • The air filter has clogged.
  • The fuel filter is blocked.
  • Fuel pump issues.
  • Dirty carburetor.
  • Depleted or drained battery.
  • Flywheel issues.
  • Plugged carburetor main jet.

You need to check these areas to narrow down the cause of the misfire in the engine.

Would you want to know what to do if you encounter these problems? We'll discuss these possible causes and other lawn mower issues through this post so continue reading to learn more.

Toro Titan zero turn lawn mower with bagger attached in yard of grass., Toro Click But Won't Start - Why And What To Do?

Why Your Toro Clicks But Won't Start [And What To Do?]

There are several reasons why a lawn mower clicks but won't start. Here are some possible causes:


Closeup of man filling up red lawnmower with gasoline from a can with a yellow spout. Lawn and grass clippings on the mower.

Empty gas, wrong gas, or old gas may affect the mower, and the machine will click won't start.

  • Toro mowers use regular unleaded gas with less than 10% ethanol and more than 87-octane gas.
  • Add fresh fuel and check if this will fix the issue.

Air Vent

The gas cap has a small hole, and if this hole is clogged, the air won't pass through, and the fuel tank can't vent.

  • Remove the cap and start your mower.
  • If the machine runs, then the cause is the clogged gas cap.
  • Replace the gas cap if needed.
  • Ensure to get a gas cap compatible with your Toro model and manufacturing year.

Click here to check Toro 88-3980 Gas Cap on Amazon.

Spark Plug

Dirty spark plugs because of oil buildup, carbon, and a bad connection will cause a misfire in the engine.

  • Check the spark plug's status and replace it if needed.
  • Get a spark plug for a specific Toro model and manufacture year.

Click here to check Toro Spark Plug on Amazon.

Air Filter

Torque wrench, mower repair - professional service.

A dirty or clogged air filter causes overheating because of a lack of airflow in the engine. It is necessary to clean the air filter and remove dirt.

  • Rinse the filter using soap and water.
  • Shake and squeeze the water out and let it dry.
  • You can also use compressed air to remove dirt.
  • If the filter is damaged, get a replacement that matches your mower's model.
  • You can also replace the foam filter if it has torn, brittle, or already built up brown spots. 

Click here to check the Toro air filter on Amazon.

Watch this YouTube video to learn how to clean the air filter using compressed air:

Fuel Filter

A clogged or blocked fuel filter hinders the fuel flow.

  • Ensure the fuel flows and passes through from the filter into the fuel hose.
  • If the fuel does not flow and the fuel filter is clogged, replace it with a new one compatible with your mower model.

Click here to check the Toro fuel filter on Amazon.

Fuel Pump

Thinning gas that sits in the fuel pump can reduce the components of the pump and won't hold the pressure needed to pump gas.

You may need to replace the fuel pump compatible with your mower model if your engine does not receive a constant flow of fuel out of the pump.

Click here to check the Toro fuel pump on Amazon.


If the carburetor is dirty or clogged, it can't regulate the air and gas mixture needed for the cylinder's combustion.

  • Clean the carburetor, the float bowl, and the needle using a carb cleaner.
  • If the carburetor is too clogged, replace it with a new one.

Click here to check carb cleaner on Amazon.


Check the battery to see if it's depleted, corroded, or drained.

  • Use a multimeter to test your battery. The meter reading should be 12.7 volts.
  • If the battery is bad, replace it with a new one.

Click here to check the multimeter on Amazon.


If you have done all the basic troubleshooting and your mower still clicks but won't start, check the Flywheel.

  • Open the flywheel cover and check if the starter is hit or stuck in the flywheel teeth upon starting.
  • If it does, try to notch the teeth using a hammer and see if the starter falls back through, and your mower will start up.

Watch this YouTube video to learn how to fix the flywheel issue:

Carburetor Main Jet

If the carburetor's main jet is plugged up, the engine will click but won't start.

  1. Clean the main jet using cola and soak it overnight.
  2. Brush it off using a toothbrush to remove stains.
  3. Get a piece of wire to clean the small hole.
  4. Replace the gasket if the float bowl is leaking.
  5. Place the main jet back into the carburetor float bowl and try to start the engine.

How To Change The Spark Plug On A Toro Lawn Mower

Replacement of the spark plug in the internal combustion engine of the lawn mower.

Here are the steps to change the spark plug on the Toro lawn mower:

  1. Disconnect the spark plug lead and pull the wire outwards. Check if the connector and plug are in good condition and if no debris is sticking.
  2. Clean around the spark plug and remove the dirt from the combustion chamber.
  3. Remove the spark plug using the spark plug wrench. The wrench has rubber to hold the spark plug and protect the porcelain insulator.
  4. Check the firing end of the spark plug. The spark plug is still okay if it is tanned or grey, and no need to replace it. If the firing end is wet, dry it out. The wet firing end causes flooding in the engine. If the firing end is black or worn out, replace it with a new one.
  5. Attach the spark plug. Use the compatible spark plug with your engine model to ensure that the gap is perfect. You can also use a plug-gapping tool to measure the gap.
  6. Assemble the spark plug connector using your hands. Ensure that the spark plug sits well with the threads.
  7. Use the wrench to tighten the spark plug until it is completely compressed. Put the wire back into the connector.
  8. Star the engine to test if it works.

Watch this YouTube video to learn about how to change the spark plug on the Toro lawn mower:

How To Change Air Filter On Toro Mower

The air filter helps to keep the engine free of dirt and debris that causes overheating, and it needs replacement over time. Here are the steps on how to replace the air filter on the Toro lawn mower:

  1. Some cover cap requires a screwdriver to remove them.
  2. Lift the cover cap on the side of the lawn mower and pop it off.
  3. The popping of the cap will expose the air filter.
  4. Press the new air filter against the lid, and put the cover back on.

See this YouTube tutorial on changing your Toro air filter:

How Do You Replace The Battery In A Toro Lawn Mower?

Hand changing accumulator - Teenager changes rechargeable battery in electric lawn mower

Replacing the battery of your lawn mower is necessary because it depletes over time. Here is how to replace the battery on the Toro lawn mower.

  1. Before replacing the battery, ensure that the engine has cooled down. Remove the boot and wire from the spark plug.
  2. Lift the mower's rear shield to remove the frame and grass bag.
  3. Support the shield using cut wood and remove the mounting screw that secures the fuse housing and the battery.
  4. If there is a sealing tape, peel it off.
  5. Slide and pull the housing out to reach the battery.
  6. Remove the insulating tape off the battery terminals, then disconnect the wiring.
  7. Remove the old battery and install the new one. Reconnect the wires and put back the insulating tape. You can also use electrical tape to reseal the terminals.
  8. Put the battery back in and close the housing back.
  9. You can replace the sealing tape using duct tape.
  10. Put back the mountain screw and remove the rear shield support.
  11. Put the grass bag and frame back in place, then reattach the boot and spark plug wiring.

Watch this video to learn how to replace the battery of the Toro lawn mower:

To Finish

Maintaining your lawn mower is necessary to avoid problems with the unit at the time you need it. Ensure that the parts are clean and replaced over time.

Want to learn more? Check out these helpful related posts!

Toro Lawn Mower Bag Not Filling – What's Wrong?

How To Keep Lawn Mower Tires From Going Flat Or Leaking

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