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How to Fix RYOBI Leaf Blower Problems

A collage of different uses leaf blowers.

The same tree covers the yard with leaves every autumn, and the rake is taken out. This year you may want a different approach and decide to purchase an RYOBI leaf blower. Leaf blowers are extremely handy tools and can spare you time and hard work. Like all tools, RYOBI leaf blowers have problems, but there are solutions for most of these problems.

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RYOBI has gas and cordless leaf blowers, and here are some of their problems:

1. Leaf Blower Won’t Start/Starts Then Shuts Down

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2. Leaf Blower Carburetor Problem

3. Leaf Blower Sparkplug Problem

4. Cordless Leaf Blower No Start

5. Cordless Leaf Blower Fan Problem

RYOBI Gas Leaf Blower

A gas leaf blower and a gallon of fuel.

Every gas leaf blower made by RYOBI has proven in its price range and quality that it is a product that performs well and meets the same standards compared to its more expensive competitors. RYOBI gas leaf blower is a product every homeowner must have if they want to maintain a big yard.

1. Leaf Blower Won’t Start/Starts Then Shuts Down

It is frustrating when your yard is covered with leaves, and your RYOBI leaf blower won’t start or starts and then shuts down. Whether your RYOBI leaf blower shuts down while working or does not want to start from the beginning, the same problem can cause both symptoms. Here are steps for a gas-powered RYOBI leaf blower that won’t start or starts and then shuts down and how to fix it.

Solution 1: Check for Enough Fuel and Old Fuel

If the RYOBI leaf blower is gas-powered, without stating the obvious low or no fuel is the first place to look. Once you eliminate an empty gas tank as the problem, the fuel could still be the culprit.

Bad fuel, especially if the RYOBI leaf blower stood for a long time, could cause it not to start. If the fuel is old, it is better to replace it. The appearance of bad fuel will be darker or muddier and have an unpleasant smell that is not usual for regular fuel.

Solution 2: Check Low Compression

Low compression is a less common problem but easy to check. Remove the spark plug and screw the compression tester in the plug tread. Pull the starter rope several times to see if it goes to over 50 psi. A psi reading above 50 psi means your compression is still good, which is not why your RYOBI leaf blower won’t start.

Solution 3: Replace Perished Fuel Line

If the fuel line is exposed to ethanol gas for too long, the fuel pipe starts to perish in the gas tank and could be the cause for your Leaf blower not to start. Replace the perished fuel line and add shield 2-cycle engine lubricant to protect the fuel pipe from ethanol in the future.

The RYOBI leaf blower has a send and a return fuel line. If you are unsure which port is for the return line, pushing the bulb a few times will cause bubbles in the return line and help you replace the fuel line to put it back in the correct port.

Replace the fuel line, and if possible, replace it with a Tygon fuel line because it has better resistance to ethanol. And if it is going to be stored for a long period, removing the fuel from the tank will help keep the fuel line from perishing quicker.

The hole in the tank is small, and the fuel line fits tight to prevent leakage. Cut a sharp edge on the end of the new fuel line to make it easy to insert into the tank. Insert the new fuel line leaving about an inch inside the tank.

Solution 4: Check for a Blocked Fuel Filter

A blocked fuel filter could also cause the RYOBI leaf blower not to start. Fuel filters accumulate dirt, sometimes entering the gas tank as it should. Eventually, fuel does not get through the filter and starves the motor causing it not to start or to shut down.

Remove the fuel filter inside the tank and disconnect it from the fuel line. Take the new fuel filter, push it onto the fuel line, and reinsert it into the tank. Fuel filters are easy to replace and should be done regularly.

2. Leaf Blower Carburetor Problem

A man carrying a rake and a leaf blower.

Once the fuel, filter, and fuel line are eliminated as the cause, your next step is to remove the carburetor. Do not make any adjustments until you have checked and cleaned the carburetor. Carburetors can cause a RYOBI leaf blower not to start but can also cause it to start and then shut down. Mostly carburetors are not faulty but need a good cleaning.

Solution 1: Clean RYOBI Leaf Blower Carburetor

Remove the send and return fuel lines from the carburetor. Long-nose pliers make it easier if they are difficult to get out. Remove the primer bulb side of the carburetor to expose the internal screen. Use carburetor cleaner and spray out any dirt. Even if the screen looks clean, give it a good spray to be sure while you have it open.

Clean the primer side of the carburetor with the carburetor cleaner by removing the gasket film to give the primer bulb a thorough cleaning. After a good cleaning, assemble the carburetor in the reverse order of disassembly, and it should be ready to go. You may need to adjust the carburetor if it still struggles to run.

Solution 2: Adjust RYOBI Leaf Blower Carburetor

If you don’t have the RYOBI carburetor adjusting tool kit purchasing one is a good idea. The tool that adjusts the carburetor varies, but it uses the DD tool in most cases.

On the carburetor, there is an L and an H adjustment screw. The L is to adjust the idle speed, and the H is for high engine speed adjustment. Start by turning the L screw counterclockwise a quarter inch. If the RYOBI leaf blower runs, you can adjust the H screw to adjust the engine speed.

3. Leaf Blower Sparkplug Problem

A man with gloves holding a spark plug.

A faulty sparkplug is a common failure, so your RYOBI leaf blower won’t start. The spark plug ignites the fuel, and a bad plug will cause the motor not to run or shut down while you are working. The same test can also identify if your coil wire is faulty. A faulty coil wire will prevent the sparkplug from firing and cause the motor to shut down or not start.

Solution: Check for Faulty Sparkplug

First, remove the coil wire and the RYOBI leaf blower sparkplug with a plug tool. Refit the spark plug into the coil wire with the plug’s side visible outside to test if it has a spark. To check for spark, use a metal tool and hold the nut portion of the sparkplug against the metal tool, making sure the metal tool is earthed to the leaf blower.

Pull the starter rope and see if there is a spark at the bottom of the spark plug. If there is a spark, your coil wire is fine, and your plug works. If the spark is weak or there is no spark, replace the spark plug. You can buy a spark catcher to test a coil wire following the same steps. Once you identify a bad sparkplug replacing it should start your RYOBI leaf blower.

After replacing the sparkplug, repeat the test to confirm that your coil wire and new sparkplug are working. With the sparkplug and coil wire working, your RYOBI leaf blower should start, or it is time to look at another cause for it not to start or shut down during work.

RYOBI Cordless/Battery Leaf Blower

A man starting a leaf blower on a lawn.

Battery-powered leaf blowers are popular for their simplicity, quality, and handling ability. RYOBI’s cordless leaf blower is a good substitute for its gas-powered cousin. A cordless leaf blower is less noisy and as powerful as a gas-powered leaf blower and is a popular choice for many homeowners.

1. Cordless Leaf Blower No Start

If the RYOBI leaf blower is battery-powered, there are a few steps to run to check why it won’t start. Luckily it is not as complex as the gas-powered leaf blower, and identifying the problem is much easier.

A faulty or broken switch could be why your RYOBI leaf blower won’t start. A loose wire or bad connection could also be a problem. Checking to find the fault may seem daunting, but it should not worry you too much.

Solution 1: Check the Battery for Charge and Bad Connection

RYOBI’s battery shows if the battery is fully charged. Push the button on the battery and see if the battery has a full charge. A simple recharge could solve your no-start problem if it is not fully charged. If the battery charge is good, ensure that the contact points on your battery and RYOBI leaf blower are clean.

Bad contact will prevent the battery from powering the leaf blower, causing the no-start problem.

If the battery contact points are dirty, take some electro clean and a swab and gently clean it. If the contact points are oxidized, you can take fine steel wool and lightly clean the contact points.

Solution 2: Cordless RYOBI Leaf Blower Faulty Switch

If the battery is fine, a bad switch is most likely the problem. The leaf blower will need some disassembling to get to the power lever switch. Remove the cover from the side to reveal the plastic lever switch, and take care not to lose the screws.

If the plastic lever switch is broken, it is better to replace it than to fix it. If you can’t find a replacement part, you can attempt to 3D print it, but if your leaf blower is under warranty, don’t open it; send it in to be repaired.

Some battery-powered RYOBI leaf blowers have a plunger switch activated by the plastic power lever. Take an electro clean, spray it inside the switch, and wait for it to dry properly before testing it. If the electro-clean did not work, you should replace the switch. If the switch is good, look for any loose connections and use the opportunity to clean out any dust and debris inside.

2. Cordless Leaf Blower Fan Problem

A man carrying a portable leaf blower.

If you trigger the motor and hear it run, but the fan does not, there is a problem between the motor and the fan. It is not a quick fix but something that you can fix.

The motor has a square female plastic housing that fits over a square male shaft connected to the fan. The RYOBI leaf blower runs at a high RPM to generate the wind force needed. The RPM causes the square shaft to heat up and ware out the square female plastic housing. Because the male and female don’t grip, the fan won’t turn.

Solution 1: Identify Cordless RYOBI Leaf Blower Fan Problem

Loosen the screws of the RYOBI leaf blower to separate the two halves. Please keep track of where everything goes to avoid struggling when reassembling it. Separate the motor from the fan and carefully put the battery into the leaf blower battery slot.

Pull the trigger switch to see if the square female plastic housing spins to confirm that nothing is wrong with the motor. The female plastic housing should be square; if worn out, the square male shaft won’t grip and run freely, causing the fan to not turn.

Solution 2: Repair RYOBI Leaf Blower Fan Connection

A leaf blower on a white background.

Once you identify the problem as a worn-out female plastic housing, the best solution would be to replace it with a new or working part. If you can’t source a part, you can use JB Weld to fix it.

Mix a small amount of JB Weld according to its correct application method and apply the JB Weld to the tip of the fan shaft. Be careful not to apply it too thick and push the excess weld past the square female housing. Take a small amount of JB Weld and insert it into the square female housing. Just enough to create a bond between the male and female connection.

Connect the motor and fan in their original position but please don’t remove them after applying the JB Weld and handle it carefully to give the weld proper time to cure and make a solid connection. Following the same method, you disassembled the RYOBI leaf blower; now reassemble everything without disturbing the weld while it’s curing.

Once everything is assembled and every screw tightened, leave the RYOBI leaf blower for two days to give the JB Weld enough time to set and make a strong weld. After two days, it is time to test it, and if you follow these steps, your RYOBI leaf blower should return to its former leaf-blowing glory.


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