Why Does My Leaf Blower Shut Off When It is Hot? (Explained for Beginners)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

The leaves are raining down and it is time to get out the leaf blower and clear them up.

However, your machine gets very hot and then goes off by itself.

This means your leaf blower engine is overheating.

An overheating engine can be caused by a number of reasons including a clogged exhaust system, dirty air filters, cooling fins or improperly mixed fuel if you are using a 2 cycle engine.

This article will discuss the causes of an overheating leaf blower, how to prevent it, how to fix it amongst other questions. 

What Causes A Leaf Blower To Overheat?

Why Does My Leaf Blower Shut Off When It is Hot
  1. Improperly Mixed Fuel

A 2-cycle leaf blower engine is designed to run on a specific gasoline and oil mixture.

The oil mixed in with the gas works to lubricate the piston and crankshaft and aids in keeping the engine internally cool. ‘

If you don’t mix enough oil into your gasoline, the engine of your leaf blower can overheat and seize due to excessive internal friction.

Most leaf blowers have labels that specify the proper fuel/oil mixture. 

  1. Dirty Muffler or Exhaust System

The muffler works to muffle the hot, smoldering exhaust gases as they exit the cylinder.

Most leaf blowers have a spark arrestor screen within the muffler to prevent fires if the engine misfires and emits sparks. 

Over time, these screens can become clogged with carbon and other heat release byproducts.

This can restrict the free flow of exhaust and cause the engine to overheats and shut down. 

  1. Cooling Fins

Air cooling is used in the majority of leaf blower engines.

This requires a free flow of air through the cooling fins of the engine.

A buildup of dust, grass, and other debris on the fins can obstruct the flow of cooling air and cause severe overheating. 

Disperse buildups of dirt in the cooling fins with a stick and a clean stiff-bristle paint brush.

To access the cooling fins on some blower models, a shroud or cover must be removed. After cleaning the fins, replace the cover

  1. Dirty Air Filters

A dirty air filter is another frequent cause of engine overheating, seizing, and dying.

These filters filter out any dirt particles that may enter the fuel and make their way to the cylinder. 

If the filters are unable to bring fresh and cool air, the gases will back up and the engine would then shut down.

To clean the filters, wash the filter pad in a mild detergent, such as dish washing soap, after every couple of uses. 

Replace the filter if the pad is too dirty to clean. Rinse it in cool water and let it dry overnight.

Here is an article I wrote on how strong is a leaf blower

Can Leaf Blowers Overheat?

Leaf blower engines just like any other engine can overheat. The engine on your leaf blower must run at a particular temperature.

It should be hot enough to burn the fuel and provide power, but cool enough not to overheat the piston. 

These engines are intended to operate within a specific range of combustion temperatures.

They must run hot enough to completely burn the fuel-oil mixture, but not so hot that the piston, crankshaft, or cylinder suffers damage or failure due to overheating. 

Overheating in a leaf blower is usually caused by a failure to freely express gases or by the fuel burning too hot inside the fuel tank.

How Do You Prevent Overheating?

The major culprits or triggers of a leaf blower overheating are either the fuel mixture, dirty exhaust system, dirty air filters and or clogged cooling fins.

To prevent overheating in the leaf blower, you need to ensure all these areas are fully checked before you start up your machine.

A 2 cycle engine often requires a fuel mixture of gas and oil. If the gas is not well mixed, it will lead to overheating and the engine shutting off.

Always check to ensure your fuel is properly mixed before adding it to your leaf blower engine.

Also, regularly check and clean the air filters, mufflers and cooling fins before using your leaf blower.

This should be done at every use if possible to avoid overheating problems. 

Also check out this article I wrote on why does my leaf blower shock me

Why Does My Leaf Blower Keep Turning Off?

There are a variety of reasons why your leaf blower keeps coming on and then going off. Some of them include: 

  • Spark Arrestor: The spark arrestor is a small screen that prevents sparks from being produced by the engine. The spark arrestor can become clogged with soot over time. 

The engine may stall if the spark arrestor becomes clogged. If this happens, remove the spark arrestor and clean it with a wire brush to unclog it. You can also change out the spark arrestor.

  • Carburetor: It’s possible that the carburetor is clogged. The most common cause of a clogged carburetor is leaving gas in the leaf blower for an extended period of time. Some of the substances in the gas may dissolve over time. 

This leaves a relatively thick and sticky residue. If the carburetor is blocked up, use a carburetor cleaner to clean it. If wiping down the carburetor isn’t working, buy a new one.

  • Fuel FIlter: Just like the carburetor, leaving old fuel in the fuel filter can make it clog up which affects the machine. This sticky fuel has the potential to block the fuel filter and potentially trigger the engine to stop working. 

If old fuel has been repeatedly left in the leaf blower, drain the gas from the fuel tank and buy a new fuel filter.

How Do You Fix A Leaf Blower That Overheats?

As we mentioned previously, an overheating leaf blower is caused by either dirty air filters, clogged cooling system, dirty mufflers or improper fuel mixture.

Any of these could be the reason why your leaf blower is overheating.

If the leaf blower is in use, first switch off so it can cool down. Then check the above mentioned parts to see if they are clogged up or dirty.

If your air filter is dirty then you would have to wash it or replace it. 

Same goes for the mufflers and cooling system. Also check your owners manual to see if you are using the right mixture of gas and oil before restarting.

Once you work on these, your leaf blower should stop overheating.

How Do I Cool Down My Leaf Blower?

If the motor on your leaf blower overheats, the best thing to do is turn it off and inspect the air filter and vent ducts.

Due to airflow restriction, a clogged air filter or vent could be causing the leaf blower to overheat.

Substitute the air filter to see if that solves the problem.

If not, turn off the machine or use it infrequently until you can contact a technician.

How Long Does It Take For A Leaf Blower To Cool Down?

If your leaf blower is overheating, then you have to switch off and leave it for a while. It might take you about 20 minutes or more for the machine to cool down.

The engines might still be a bit too hot to touch.

Once it is totally cool, you can then check to find out what the problem is.

To avoid your machine having problems, there are preventive measures you can take.

This involves regular maintenance of your machine from time to time.


A leaf blower overheating when it’s time to gather the leaves can be an annoying problem.

If you are currently experiencing that then you need to check your machine.

Check your oil mixture. Clean your air filters as they might be dirty.

Also check out the cooling fins and exhaust system.

Care of your carburetor and spark arrestor is important as well.

It is best to do all this as preventive measures however.

Have a regular maintenance schedule so your machine doesn’t go off and on when you are using it.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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