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Gas Scooter Troubleshooting

Learning how to troubleshoot gas scooters  can save you money.

   We show you how, and where to go for gas scooter tools

Trouble Shooting Reference for Gas Powered Scooters


This page is provided to  help you find and repair problems associated with gasscooters and is not intended to replace your repair manual.  To successfully use this guide you will be taught how to identify the major problem with your scooter, and then use the guide to make the diagnosis and repair.  I have listed the most likely causes first to help you quickly get your gas scooter back on the road.   You may it beneficial to read an excellent article on gas scooter engines first.  If you are looking to resolve a gas scooter drive train issue, try Troubleshooting gas scooter Drive Trains.


DISCLAIMER:  Maintenance, disassembly and repair of your gas powered scooter should only be performed by people with sufficient mechanical skill or experience so that no unsafe repair or modifications are made.

Engine Problems 


Will Not Start:


This is by far the most common gas scooter problem you will experience.  Non-starting engines can result from improper winter storage (you did drain out or use up all the fuel in tank at the end of the riding season didn't you?), loss of ignition, or electrical problems.  Here is the process I follow when this happens.


  • I check to see if the unit has gas, and is the gas clean with a well maintained gas cap.  If the gas cap gasket has deteriorated and bits of it floating around in the tank, then the filter may be plugged.

  • If you think the gas in the tank is stale (can happen in less than 60 days!).  Old, stale gas smells like varnish and leaves gum like deposits in the tiny holes (jets) that are in your carburetor.  If this happens, you will have to remove your carburetor, remove any rubber o-rings or gaskets, and then soak it in a carburetor cleaner.

  • Is the kill switch set to "off"

  • Is the choke not set correctly?  If I am not sure, I pull the air cleaner and look inside the carburetor to confirm the position of the choke lever to either open or closed.

  • Is the engine flooded?  If the choke is closed and I see gas dripping out of the air cleaner, or the engine will not even pop, this may be the case.  Flooding means too much gas has gotten in the engine.  Remove the sparkplug, and crank the engine over with the choke in the normal position.  If the sparkplug is wet, the engine has been flooded.  Cranking it with the plug removed will evaporate the gas.  Put the plug back in, do not choke and try to start the gas scooter.

  • Is the spark plug wire connected to spark plug?  Remove the spark plug, push it into the spark plug wire cap and while laying in on the metal engine, pull the engine over using the pull-start or electric start.  A snapping sound should be audible and you should see a blue spark at the tip of the spark plug.

  • Is the air filter wet or plugged up?  A plugged or wet air filter can act exactly like an engine with the choke on.  You need to check your air filter often and clean it, especially if you are riding in dusty conditions.  Under no circumstances operate your gasscooter with the air filter removed.  You will do major damage to the engine in a very short period of time.

  • If your gas scooter has an electric start, the starting switch may be faulty.

Will Not Stay Running:

Sometimes your gas scooter will start just fine, but dies a few minutes later.  These types of problems can be harder to diagnose than a pocketbike that just won't start!  It's important to observe the events just before the gas scooter stops running;  were you turning left or right?  Were you going over bumps?  Were you braking?  All these observations can make gas scooter troubleshooting much easier.

  • Water in your gasoline can cause this symptom, even if your gas is fresh.  Water gets in gas from condensation that can form when your gas can experiences a temperature change (moves from cool garage into moist air).  Usually the gas scooter's gas tank will have small well, or low spot where water and debris will settle.  But, of course as you ride, this pool can migrate into the suction of your gas line, and will kill the engine.  Take a flashlight and look into the tank through the gas cap.  If there is water, you will see it as small "beads" in the bottom of the tank.  This water must be removed either via a mechanical siphon (don't try to use your mouth to start a siphon) or by removing the gas line to the tank and catching the gas/water mixture as it drains out the low point.  Be sure to dispose of old oils and gas products properly.

  • A loose sparkplug wire or bad sparkplug can cause this.  Your plug wire should attach very snugly to the sparkplug.  Wiggle it and see if it feels like a loose tooth.  It should grip it tightly.  Pull the sparkplug and see if it's dirty or has a piece of carbon shorting out the electrode.  Clean it and put it back in and try again.

  • A clogged or wet air filter can slowly choke the engine out.  It may start when it's cold and actually run ok until it gets warm, and then with the too rich mixture it dies, cools off, and might let you restart it again.  Keep your filter clean!

  • Your kill or stop switch can go bad.  Gas scooter kill switches can get wet, or simply fail mechanically.  Try disconnecting it at the engine and try the gas scooter out.

  • Gas filter is plugged.  Some gas scooters have a gas filter in the gas line, and will alter the fuel to air mixture if they get plugged, similar to how a plugged air filter will.  Replace the filter and try again.

Engine is Low On Power:

This problem will be evidenced by inability to climb hills, lower top speeds, and general lack of engine responsiveness.

  • Gas Scooter was driven without an air cleaner.  When this happens the internal clearances of the engine open up and two-stroke engine loses compression.  It may sound like the engine is running OK, but it will lack power.  The only way to fix this, is with a total engine rebuild.

  • Throttle cable has stretched.  You are limited mechanically by how far you can twist the throttle or squeeze the throttle lever.  When the throttle cable stretches, it no longer moves the throttle linkage on the engine through its full range of movement and the top speed drops off.  This is an easy fix.  Look at where the cable connects to the engine for a small cable stop with a screw.  Loosen the screw, and move the stop up the cable towards the throttle.  Don't move it too far, or the gas scooter will not idle correctly.

  • The chain has not been maintained.  Keeping your chain well lubricated is important.  Use a high quality motorcycle chain lube, not oil for this task.  Chain lube is designed not to be thrown off at high speeds which is especially important for belt/chain drive gas scooters.  If a lot of oil is thrown from the chain on to the belt, the belt will slip.

  • Incorrect tire pressure.  Of all the low power complaints I have diagnosed, this one is the primary cause.  Gas scooter tires need to be properly inflated to maintain optimum performance.  Check your owners manual.  Many gas scooters recommend tire pressure well in excess of what a typical car or bicycle would take.  They can be a pain to inflate;  you may have to get a pump with a screw style end instead of a quick disconnect to fill them.

  • Drive belts are slipping.  Slipping belts overheat, glaze over and get progressively worse.  Some gas scooters have one belt, others two and slippage from any of them can cause a loss of power.  Be sure to keep your belts properly adjusted.  There is a product called "Belt Grip" that comes in a small spray can that can help restore slipping belts temporarily.  You spray a bit on the offending belt and then can test to see if the problem is a belt issue or one of the other issues outlined above.

Click Here For Drive Train Problems 


  We try to answer all your questions in the articles above.  Still have a question?   Write to us at info@gas-scooters-on-the-web.com and we'll answer it. 




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I get mine from Neo Scooters.  What you see below are actual pictures from their parts catalog.  No more guessing if you have the right part by an obscure description.  They sort by the model of your scooter and have pictures of each part, with the price and part number.  With Free Shipping Included, you cannot go wrong.  Look for their parts link in the lower left corner of the page the link below on the Neo logo takes you to.

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