Imagine you have just tried starting the engine of your boom lift, rough terrain scissor lift, or telehandler but it spits and sputters. Have no fear! The experts at C-Tech are here to help!  We carry a wide array of ignition associated parts from oil pressure switchesspark plugssolenoidsglow plugs, and sensors to fuel-related parts and engine governors.

It’s common that machines equipped with carbureted engines may encounter difficulty starting in weather conditions of 15°-20° F or colder.  After a few unsuccessful attempts of starting the engine, you should troubleshoot the cause of the starting difficulty by checking the carburetorignition system, and fuel system

If you notice white smoke coming from the exhaust after cranking the engine a few times, this likely means that the engine is flooded. If the engine is flooded and will not start, inspect the carburetor. If, after cranking the engine, there is no white smoke, examine the fuel.

To inspect the carburetor, start with the choke temperature settings. Read your equipment service manuals for ambient temperature settings and reference marks to adjust the choke to the appropriate settings. Once your carburetor choke has been adjusted, look to see if the choke butterfly is stuck by manually opening and closing it. If all of that looks good, check the choke pull-off screw for proper adjustment. Most equipment manufacturers suggest screwing the adjustment screw all the way in, then back out a ½ turn.

If it still will not start, it is time to examine the ignition system. To do this, first, start with the oil pressure switch. Look for voltage at the normally closed terminal to the common ground while cranking the engine. If there is appropriate voltage, jump all three posts at the oil pressure switch, then see if the engine will start. If the engine starts after jumping the posts, replace the oil pressure switch.  If your engine still won’t start, investigate the spark plugs for the presence of a spark.  There could be a whole host of issues if there is no spark at the plugs during cranking like relays not activating or ignition module issues. 

If there is a spark at the plugs, the engine may not be getting fuel to the carburetor. Check the fuel shutoff solenoid and the fuel pump for appropriate voltage while cranking the engine.  Don’t forget to check fuel pressure for appropriate pressure and inspect the fuel filter (see last month’s article on inspecting your filters).  Finally, take a good look at the fuel pump supply line for any obstructions or tears. 

We hope your engine starts now after our tips, but if you need to replace any of the parts we have mentioned, C-Tech has you covered! We offer the highest quality ignition parts and same-day shipping in most cases.  Contact us at 877-755-4311, email us at or chat with us live on our website for help on any of our products!