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Pressure washer with Honda gcv160 engine wont start.

Roy I have pressure washer Excel 2500 vr2522 with a Honda cgv160 5.5hp engine that will not start. I have clean fuel, a good spark and adequate compression on the engine. I cleaned the carburetor and it stil wont start. A neighbor suggested the flywheel key may be faulty. I took off the flywheel and saw where it "should " be, however I may be seeing the wrong things. Someone help me decipher this issue. I bought the washer 6 months ago!

Thanks guys

Tom Roy, Doubtful that you have spun flywheel - sheared flywheel key, it would be extremely rare in GCV160 engines, on mower applications the crankshaft will bend when something is hit before the flywheel key shears.

If you have good compression (over 85 PSI), good spark with a good spark plug, good fuel, then it could be either a bad carburetor (which isn't uncommon on the GCV160 engines) or possibly the starting technique. You've probably experienced, gas powered pressure washers are easiest to start with the pressure washer gun trigger pulled and the pressure tip in the low pressure soap position. Or the high pressure hose can be removed from the pump and the water allowed to flow freely with no resistance while trying to start engine.
You have a 2 year warranty on the engine it is non-commercial non rental use, 3 months otherwise.
http://www.honda-engines.com/dea.htm will give you the name of the Honda enginde distribtor for your state. They will have authorized Honda engine dealers throughout your state. Tom C.

Scott Did you ever get a response? I have the same problem
Fred I also have the same problems as most of the people I have read about concerning the gcv160 engine. I have also cleaned, changed plug, changed oil, changed gas, etc. All it makes me think is the HONDA engines must not be worth purchasing ever again. I'm tired of pulling and having it run a few minutes if I use a start-it spray. All the advise that seems to be given is to take it to a repair shop. Well I think I would rather just tell everyone I know that the HONDA engines are not worth buying...I will throw it away and buy something else. FRUSTRATED

If you can forward this to the proper HONDA representatives, please do.

jeremy Having the very same problem with my Excell 2500 VH2522 2ith a Honda GVC160 ic2 5.5. I have only used it twice in two years I think maybe its the start up process I am going to try that route before I haul it in. I will post any success
jeremy Premature post but i found the operators manual at the honda website. It seems to discuss bad fuel spark gap for potential reason. I am going to give the spark plug a checking and try to hook up the water and see if that makes a difference. I have been trying without the water hooked up.
jeremy Forgot the link to the manual

http://www.honda-engines.com/Engines_owners_manuals/ownersmanuals/gcv160.htm

roy 3 year old pressure washer used 3 times. Will not start. have changed/checked fluids to no avail. after reviewing other comments, maybe this Honda engine is a lost cause. have spark and fuel.
any suggestions!

roy mc Honda gcv 160 engine on Troy built pressure washer. Used 3 times. gas, oil and plug changed. will not start. any suggestions other than trash.

roy mc

Ron I have the same problem with my POS excel with the Honda vr2522 engine. Three uses in three years, thanks Honda!!!

Pierre Durand Same problem GCV 160 5.5 pressure washer wont start.
Last year, before winter, ran fine.
New gas, new spark plug.
Still wont start.
I see gas coming through, spark OK.
Still wont start

Marcus Smith Ok here is what I did and after 20 minutes pulling on mine trying to start it. I did some research on the different styles of this motor.

If you are having problems with a manual start+fixed throttle like a pressure washer follow the start procedure for manual start+manual throttle by putting your finger on the spring loaded throttle and push it to wide open as you pull on the manual starter rope. Once I saw the model with the manual throttle said to put at full open, I just said.to myself "frickin duh!!!".

Fired right up, first pull. Now still use your choke like normal and all that too and have the wand depressed also. It makes it all tricky so I twist tied my wand trigger n put under my foot so I could hold spring loaded throttle in one hand and pull rope with other.

Yah it's b.s. but give it a try. Oh and only had to do this the first start after pulling out from being stored. Starts normally every time after that with out having to hold throttle open.
Hope it works with yours too.

Stu Used this twice last summer. Stored it in my shed with a blanket over it. I have been trying to start it for almost an hour. I have read all of your posts and I am not going to take a new power tool apart. There is no way I should have to. This is a new machine! Last time I buy a Honda.
John K.
Aside from the engine not starting, every 4th pull or after, the pull cord whips out of my hand - some kind of back lash. Does it have electronic ignition and is this misfiring to cause the "kickback"? It is dangerous this way and I am afraid of being injured.

Harold Had same problem with GCV160. Would start for maybe 10 seconds, cord would pull back and almost break my hand. Turned out to be a broken rocker arm. Pull off front cover where it says "OHC", being careful not to bend it. If one of the rocker arms is broken, new one from Honda costs only $5 and is easy to replace. Keep piston at top-dead-center in case valve spring pops off. this will avoid having the valve slip down into the cylinder. also suggest checking valve clearance.
Ken M Same Problem, so I bought a new carburetor, and replaced it, the pressure cleaner ran for 3 hours, spraying my drive way, then it quit. as before the new carburetor, it starts for 4 min. then quits. drained the carb bowl, drained the gas tank, bought fresh fuel, vacuumed out the tank with 1/4 inch hose attached to my shop vac, put new gas in, same thing. starts for 3 or 4 min then shuts off. it dosnt matter where you put the choke, if you wait for an hour or so you can repeat the strat process and have it run for 4 min. was wondering if there is some kind of thermal cut out ?
Mark Z Tried the method suggested by Marcus but to no avail. It seems to be a consistent problem for this engine but can't find any recalls from Honda. If anyone has found a good solution please post, otherwise such a waste of good $
George Have Honda GCV160 engine with Excell VR2522 pressure washer. The intake valve is stuck in open position no compression. There is a crack on the push rod tower, Doesn't look like there is any way to remove and replace the push rod tower. Got any suggestions?
Robb Perez borrowed one from a friend. started on first pull but the spray was sputtering and spitting and wouldn't spray full blast consistently. shut it off changed tips and tried starting again and now the pull string is much harder to pull and will not start. I tried starter fluid and a new spark plug and holding the trigger in on position none of it works. Now I have to give it back to him saying it cant start. I wont buy a Honda.
Bob My problem after the tuneup is I get no spark/crank. Not even a gasp. Frustrating.
Seth Same old issues, "Will not start." Wish i researched all this before purchase. No more HONDA'S to be purchased by this family. Please forward to HONDA if anyone has the time?
Dave Wow! Been trying to start my Troy Built power washer with a HONDA 160 engine for an hour. No luck and VERY frustrating. Has been used 3 times!
I bought it specifically because it had a HONDA engine... what a mistake!!!

Rex whetstone I can get mine to start and it runs fine at an idle...when I turn on the water and squeeze the trigger the motor will not stay constant, keeps surging and won't put out a constant pressure
Bill Ditto to everything that's been said about the GCV160. New plug, fresh gas, oil change, sprayer open, sprained wrist....unbelievable, with the Honda name. They must have bought the motor from somewhere cheap. The scrap metal guy is going to get a nice surprise at the curb this weekend.
daryyl The person that said to push the throttle wide ope was right on after almost giving up, it worked.
Manuel hernandez Run's find at an idle..Press the trigger on the wand & it shut's right off.Was going to change the spark plug….
Greg 4/24/15 I bought a new carburetor. I put it on last night and it started on first pull using starter fluid. I let it run a few minutes then shut it off. I restarted it several times (with it choked) with one pull. Problem seemed to be resolved!
Got up today to use the pressure washer. Now it won't start. Same problem as before. If I spray starter fluid in carb, it will start and run a few seconds then stop. I tried holding the throttle open but that didn't help.
It's still under warranty so I'm going to call the dealer and see what they will do.

Greg I continued to work on the engine all morning. I removed the new carburetor and cleaned it with spray cleaner. Reinstalled it and it still would only run for a few seconds.

I called a local dealer and talked with their service department. I explained the problem and he said it sounded like a carburetor issue and/or bad fuel. He pointed out that gasoline is now refined for use in cars with fuel injectors. and engines that still have carburetors are having more problems in general. I remembered that I run premium fuel in my big SKAG mower (also a Honda engine) and it runs great. Starts on first pull every time. So I went and got a gallon of Premium gas.

I decided to flush the fuel system. I pulled the fuel line from the carburetor without turning the fuel valve off. I was surprised that the fuel only dripped out of the hose. I pulled the hose from the input side of the fuel valve expecting to get a big flow of fuel. But it only dripped from this hose as well. Was the fuel line clogged? I pulled the fuel line from the tank and got the big flow I expected so I drained the tank. I also noticed something sticking out of the end of the fuel line. It was apparently a filter. It didn't look dirty, but it was very flimsy. It could easily get bent in the hose and effectively stop the fuel flow. I put the line back on without the filter, put premium gas in the tank and started the engine. IT RAN GOOD!

I didn't want to run without a filter, so I removed the fuel line and CAREFULLY put the filter in the hose so it wasn't bent. The engine still runs good.

The only way I can explain why the new carburetor ran well but did not run the next morning is the fuel line. I think the filter was bent before I changed the carburetor, but I wiggled it enough as I installed it to get a good fuel flow without realizing it. But the temperature the next morning was much colder which may have caused the rubber line to shrink slightly and close the bend in the filter. I started it multiple times yesterday and a few times this morning and it continues to run well.

Check your fuel flow into the carburetor. Also run premium fuel if possible. It can't hurt.


Ratchet Clank Marcus, thanks for the tip about the manual start/throttle -- I had the same issue where it wouldn't start, but tried your tip and it fired right up.
Alan Weber This pressure washer is a POS. Had the same problems all of you are having the Honda motor is worthless and I and anyone I know will never buy one again. Mine is 2 years old and been used twice, waste of money.
Tech Teach I was having the same problem as many others posted here, use the pressure washer for a time then it wouldn't run anymore. Sometimes I could top off the gas tank and it would run for a few minutes more. Went through the carb and that didn't do any good, so I concentrated on fuel supply. Disconnected the fuel line from the shutoff, and a good stream would run for 30 seconds or so, then it would stop. When I loosened the fuel cap, it would flow again. The cap has four holes around the edge that allow air into the tank to replace the fuel. There is foam behind the holes to prevent water from migrating in. These holes weren't letting the air in because they were dirty. Cleaned the heck out of them with carburetor cleaner, (pull the rubber center out of the cap and blow the holes out till fuel runs free with the cap on. I also flushed the tank and cleaned the filter in the hose at the tank end of the hose. Seems to work like a champ now!!


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