Homeowner’s log, May 2020

Symptom: The previous owners of the house left behind a nice gasoline-powered chainsaw, which I was looking forward to using to cut up some fallen tree branches. Unfortunately the chainsaw refused to start up. Right away I noticed that the primer bulb was cracking, and virtually disintegrated when I continued to press it.

Solution: I took apart the chainsaw and realized that not only had the primer bulb disintegrated, but also the fuel lines had crumbled, so there was no way for fuel to get from the tank to the engine. I’m guessing this might have been because the chainsaw was left in the garage in the wintertime, possibly for multiple winters. When looking for replacement parts on eBay, I noticed there were pre-made kits for sale that contained a primer bulb, a generous length of tubing to serve as a fuel line, as well as new filters for oil and fuel. Apparently these are all very common points of failure. This kit cost less than $10, and installing the new bits took about two hours. The chainsaw now runs as smooth as butter, and I’ll try to give it better maintenance going forward.