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How Do I Know if My Starter Solenoid Is Bad on My Lawn Mower?

Lawn mowers are a type of outdoor power equipment that has a motor and blades. It is used to cut grass and other plants on the ground. Lawn mowers are an essential part of maintaining a neat and tidy yard. 

They come in all shapes and sizes, with some cutting up more grass than others. A lawn mower is a device that cuts grass and turns it into mulch, while a starter solenoid is an electric device that starts an engine. 

A starter solenoid is an electromagnet that allows the engine to start and can be found on the front of most engines. The starter solenoid is hooked up near the motor that powers the engine when it is turned on. 

In this article we’ll discuss how you can check if the solenoid has gone bad in your lawn mower, what might cause the issues and how to prevent this from happening.

Bad starter solenoid of a lawn mower
Bad starter solenoid

Symptoms of a bad starter solenoid

All mowers have a starter solenoid and it’s one of the most common problems that you may encounter. When a starter solenoid fails, it makes a clicking sound and the mower won’t turn on

This can be caused by an issue with the starter or the solenoid itself. Also, rapid clicking sounds coming from the solenoid.

Mower won’t start just clicks

If your engine won’t turn over when you click the key, one of the likely culprits is that the starter solenoid isn’t working properly as it has gone bad. 

Check that the wire is plugged in or that it’s connected with properly grounded and also make sure it’s firmly pressed in. If it doesn’t start as usual, you might have a problem with the starter solenoid.

Rapid clicking sound from the solenoid

A starter solenoid is a part of a lawn mower that provides power to start the engine when engaged. This rapid clicking sound is usually a sign that the starter solenoid is not receiving enough current. 

When this happens, the solenoid will click rapidly and you will be able to find it by locating the starter and then listening for the noise and removing each component until the solenoid is found. 

All the components of the starter solenoid, battery and engine should be checked carefully to examine the issue.

Check if the starter solenoid is bad or not

There are a few things that you need to check if the starter solenoid of your lawn mower is bad or not. The most important thing to do in this case is to test the solenoid.

If your lawn mower starts and cuts for a few seconds but then suddenly stops, you may have discovered that your starter solenoid is bad. This guide will help you find out if it is bad or not.

Check the charge level

Just like with any other device, a battery can have a low voltage reading because of low charge or because something is wrong with it. In this case, it is the best way to charge the battery first.

Find the battery voltage of your mower and check it against the voltage chart provided by the manufacturer. See if this shows faulty readings. You can use a voltmeter to determine if the battery is getting charged or not. 

If the meter reads less than 12.5 volts, then it means that your mower battery needs to be charged. 

Check all electrical connections

You should check all electrical connections of battery, solenoid and starter motor. The most important thing to do is to make sure the connections are tight and free of corrosion. 

The starter solenoid is a small cylinder near the starter motor. It has a thin wire from the ignition key that activates it. If you think your engine doesn’t turn on, check if the solenoid is not working. You might also notice a grounding wire in it.

Clean any visibly corroded connections

If you have a lawn mower, you know how important it is to keep the connections clean and corrosion-free. The same applies for your starter system.

To check the connections, be sure to disconnect the battery and remove any visible corrosion from the connecting pieces before reconnecting them. Now you need to make sure that our gearshift is in neutral position. 

Check if the mower deck is disengaged or not. Then, set the parking brake. Reconnect the battery, start the engine again, check if it works or not.

Test the solenoid

You have checked the engine doesn’t start and you are confident that the problem is with the solenoid. You need to find out if it is indeed bad before replacing it. 

Testing solenoid of a lawn mower
Testing solenoid

Turn on the ignition key and have a look at the large terminal posts where red wire connects to it. Take a screwdriver. Then put a metal shaft to both of the terminals at once. 

If it turns over while starting, the solenoid is bad and should be replaced.

Why has the solenoid gone bad?

The solenoid can be affected by moisture or heat. Moisture causes water to enter the solenoid and this water is what corrodes the wiring and makes it short. 

Heat is another cause of the solenoid having gone bad, and causing the lawn mower to fail.


A nightmare for electrical components: Moisture intrusion is a nightmare for electrical components when they are exposed to water. 

When this happens, the parts will become corroded over time and cause damage to other sensitive electronic components in the lawn mower. Moisture causes the solenoid to go bad when it enters the engine bay and causes a bunch of problems. 

This can be fixed by keeping your engine bay free of moisture, properly cleaning all the dirt, and sealing all components with a protective coating.

To prevent this from happening, you need to make sure that there is no moisture anywhere in your engine bay. You should also clean any dirt from your car regularly so that no debris gets stuck in between things and causes corrosion.

Bad wiring

The solenoid is a part of the motor which controls how fast or slow the motor turns. Once it dies, it will not start anymore and needs to be replaced with a new one. 

Replaced with a new solenoid in a lawn mower
Replace with a new solenoid

In the case of a lawn mower, if there is an issue with old wiring especially someone has been messing with it and created a bad connection. It prevents electricity properly.

When you have a broken or corroded wire in your lawn mower, you know that something’s wrong with it. These things would cause the solenoid to die and also corrosion age because of this issue as well. 

This not only leads to problems with your mower but also an expense with the time and money needed for repair. When you clean all of the rust off of terminals and solenoids, it will help to stop the problem from happening again in future.


Your lawn mower engine overheating regularly could be due to a faulty solenoid. Heat causes the solenoid has gone bad in the lawn mower. 

If you’re living in a very hot climate and your engine is frequently overheating, then it is possible that the solenoid will break. This happens when summer temperatures get very high and the lack of fresh air with the increasing heat. 

Other reasons for this might be that you have damaged or clogged any of the cooling and fresh air hoses inside your engine bay. This problem can easily be fixed by replacing your broken or clogged cooling hoses with ones from a reliable source before further damage occurs.


The age is a factor that can cause the solenoid has gone bad in a lawn mower.  When the solenoid goes bad in a lawn mower, you will know that as soon as you start experiencing it. 

It starts out working slowly and then problems arise with the quality of work. The lifespan of an engine will be different depending on how often they are used and how well they are maintained. 

Use it correctly to get the full performance and lifespan of the mower and the other components.


Solenoids are a very important component for a lawn mower. If they have gone bad, the lawn mower will just turns and fail to start and run.

In this article, we have discussed the symptoms of a bad solenoid and how to test it. 

We also discussed what can cause the solenoid to go bad and followed the right steps to fix those issues. Follow our guidelines to get the best performance out of the lawn mower. 

It will prolong the life of the mower itself as well as the components of the mower too. Also, it costs you less.

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