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Old 10-10-2009, 09:31 PM   #1
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Water in oil


I have a log splitter with a Honda engine. I tried to use it this morning and it wouldn't start. I later discovered water in the oil. I drained the contaminated oil and replaced it with kerosene. I pulled the plug wire and cranked it several times. I then ran fresh oil through it using the same method and finally refilled it with fresh oil. It still won't start. Any thoughts on 1) how the water got in; (it's an air cooled engine obviously) 2) what I can do to get it to run?

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Old 10-11-2009, 01:34 PM   #2
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Water in oil


"I have a log splitter with a Honda engine". That said, and it being a log splitter, do you/have you left it outside much? Maybe rainy weather? I could have been that after the last time(s) you used it, as it cooled off, some water condensed within the cylinder wall and drained down into the crankcase. I agree with what you did to flush the water out, I use Marvel Mystery Oil (no add here) myself in small engines for this. Is this unit an electric or pull-start unit? Start by checking the spark plug, actually their cheap enough, get a new one and before putting it in check for a spark while turning over the engine. IF you don't have spark, you obviously have an electrical problem. IF this is an older unit, with flywheel magneto, you maybe can lighly sand the outside of the magnetic area of the flywheel to remove rust. If it is electronic, that's another story. IF you have spark, then you have a fuel problem, which goes along with the water-in-crankcase problem, moisture in fuel. It may be time to drain the fuel tank, use fresh fuel and try again. It also may be time to remove the carb and clean it properly, depending on you skills. Good Luck, David

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Old 10-11-2009, 02:22 PM   #3
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Water in oil


Thanks for the thoughts. It does have electronic ignition and it has definitely been exposed to A LOT of rain over the last 5-6 weeks. It sat outside with the air intake completely exposed. I'm guessing that's the source of the water intrusion. This thing gets passed around and takes a lot of abuse/neglect. I'm surprised it's worked as long as it has. Haven't checked for spark, but when I crank it I can hear it trying to start. Even get wisps of smoke, so based on your advice it sounds like I need to evacuate all the fuel. It's past time for a carb kit any way, which is way out of my league. I was just hoping to get it running well enough to use next weekend before leaving it with the man. Thanks again.
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Old 10-11-2009, 05:00 PM   #4
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Water in oil


Don't talk yourself into thinking a carb kit is out of your league. It's really not that bad. I do a carb kit on my snow blower, pressure washer, and tractor every three years, so I'm doing at least one a year. Worst thing that can happen is you lose the damn float pin retainer, which I manage to do pretty much every single time. Thank god I'm not a surgeon. But that's what kits are for. Look on Youtube for a how to video.

I would put a carb kit on par with replacing a kitchen sink faucet, only the parts are smaller and fluid stinks like gasoline.
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Old 10-11-2009, 06:30 PM   #5
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Water in oil


Thanks Thurman and Aggie. Thought I'd let you know I got her running. I drained all the fuel, cleaned all the rust and gunk from inside the bowl, and added a bottle of Isoheet to the gas tank. I know it's mainly alcohol, but I figured for a couple of extra bucks it might clean things out a little too. Then I cranked like a madman, sprayed a little WD in the intake, and cranked some more. It finally started and kept running. Now it's running great. Can't say the same for me after a few hours of splitting wood. When I get to feeling frisky I might attempt that carb kit. Later.
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