Troy-bilt Colt Tiller

Mar 15, 2012
PEARL River la
I purchased this tiller around a a month ago and while it does great I found a flaw in the 208cc engine. When I clean tine area I always stand it up on handle so I can change or remove tines then today it found a net. To say a mess is an understatement to say the least. I rested on handle and started cutting net out with removing tines as I go then afterwards I let it rest upright so any oil would go back down. After about 30 minutes I go to start and it is hydrolocked. Checking oil none on stick shows (full beforehand), remove sparkplug (full of oil) then tried pulling cord and oil came out. Put enough oil as to not damage engine anymore and after cleaning plug then reinstall still wouldn't start. On full choke it started although rough with only way to keep it running was half choke. There was oil coming out of muffler with lots of smoke for a few minutes then turned choke off which idle came back to normal. I let it get up to temperature and no smoke or noise and will let it sit for couple of days with this weather. So far doesn't seem to have damaged the engine and still has plenty of power to till. So now I have to find a way to get tines serviced without hydrolocking the engine. All I can say is that it's a good thing I am mechanically inclined or it would have been returned.
Its almost impossible to turn a 4 stroke over without oil issues. You can try pulling the rope until you are on a compression stroke. This should close the valves and seal the cylinder, but you will still have to wait for the oil to drain back down to the crankcase before you can start it.
It's really not a flaw at all, most any 4-stroke wet sump engine can get oil in the cylinder if inverted. I doubt the carburetor likes being in that position either, which may have contributed to the difficulty you had starting it up afterward.