How to replace broken starter rope

broken starter rope

You finally decided to take care of your lawn, you have the will-power and when you try to fire up your grass trimmer the starter rope brakes! Don’t quit now, it is time for a simple DIY repair and you will be back trimming your lawn in under half an hour. There is no need to carry your trimmer to authorized service or to pay somebody to fix it. Broken starter rope or pull cord is something that will inevitable happen to everybody who use their trimmer, lawn mower or chainsaw often. In the article we will show you how to replace broken starter rope on grass trimmer but the procedure is the same on lawn mowers and chainsaws.

First you need to disassemble the housing with hex key or torx T-wrench, depending of the manufacturer and model of your machine, and remove the plastic cover.

grass trimmer disassemble

When you remove the plastic cover you will see the spool on which the rope is wrapped. Unscrew the small bolt in the center of the spool and remove the spool. Don’t worry about the spring which is on the other side of the spool, just leave it there. If it falls out  just put it aside but don’t forget to put it back before assembling.

grass trimmer spool




Remove old string using an awl or a small screwdriver. You can buy starter rope and you will have enough rope for 10 repairs but you can use solid plastic string if you don’t have original starter rope.

starter rope spool

If you use plastic string then use the fire lighter and melt the end of the string in order to pull it through the opening.  Some other kind of string would do temporarily fix and it would not last for long. If you don’t use new string be aware to use it as soon as possible because otherwise you will have the same problem soon. Put the string through the opening, make a knot and melt the other side of the string with fire lighter and pull the rope until the knot sits in the opening.

starter rope knot

Wrap the string on the spool counter clockwise and put the spool back.  Don’t forget about aforementioned spring on the other side and take care that it is well seated. Pull the rope through the opening on the housing.

grass trimmer housing

Put the other end of the rope through the handle and make loose end knot. Do not fasten the knot tightly because you will see where to put the end knot when you put the housing back. Now you can screw the bolt on the spool.

grass trimmer spool bolt

Put the housing back and then lightly pull the rope and make a knot where the rope comes out of the handle. The handle must stay in the position on the housing and must not hang on the rope.

grass trimmer housing

As you can see, the procedure is very simple and you don’t need special tools or special skills for this repair and anyone can do it in under half an hour. We presented the procedure for fixing broken starter rope on grass trimmer but the procedure is the same on lawn mowers and chainsaws.

Thank you for sharing, Handyman tips team!
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