How To Repair Timmer When Cutters Will Not Move

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  • Rated as REALLY EASY
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If your engine runs, but the trimmer blades do not move when the throttle is engaged, the clutch may be broken or improperly tensioned. The clutch is attached to the crankshaft, and engages the gearbox to start rotating once a certain rotational speed is reached. The clutch allows the engine to run without always engaging the gearbox. A broken clutch is easy to replace once the gearbox and in some cases part of the engine shrouds has been disassembled to allow for access to the clutch. When performing this repair, remove the spark plug and feed a piece of scrap starter rope into the combustion chamber, tol stop the piston from moving while the clutch is removed. Refer to your user manual for the proper replacement part number if your clutch is broken.


The gearbox on a hedge trimmer is mounted to the bottom of the engine. The blades attach directly to the gearbox. The gearbox has a few gears that provide a gear reduction and then transfer the rotational motion to a back and forth reciprocal motion of the blades. Issues with the gearbox are usually stripped or worn gears caused by years of use or from jamming the blades, damage, or wear.


If the blades of your trimmer become damaged, they may not be able to move freely through their intended path. Sticks, grass and other debris can become caught in the blades and stop them from moving. Before inspecting your blades for debris, be sure to unplug the spark plug boot so the unit will not start while you are handling the blades. Remove any twigs or debris that may have caused the blades to lock. If the blades are bent or warped at all, they should be replaced before use is continued. Another common issue with hedge trimmer blades are bent teeth. The teeth can become bent by being dropped on the ground, or through usage such as accidently hitting a chain link fence while trimming a shrub.

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