I have a White Outdoor lawn tractor with Tecumseh engine. I have the following issues and need to find the culprit:

  1. Heavy white smoke
  2. Oil smell gas
  3. There's oil under the air filter and it's leaking over the carburetor and parts underneath
  • The fuel pump is also leaking fuel when I start the engine. I just ordered a new carburator and fuel pump but I think I might have other issues as well.
    – Eric
    May 10, 2019 at 18:41
  • Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! May 10, 2019 at 19:02

1 Answer 1


I'd suggest your float is stuck and allowing unfettered fuel to access the engine without flooding it (somehow). An engine will have grey-ish smoke when there's way too much fuel. If it's just enough to run rich, it will smoke black. The difference being the grey is raw aerated fuel coming out, where the black is partially burnt. I would bet if you pulled the plug, you'd find it all kinds of wet. You can replace the fuel pump, but my suggestion would be to just change the carburetor first. You'll most likely find that will solve your issue, and if so, return the pump for a refund. You'll also most likely need to change your oil and filter when you do this. You'll find it way over full. Be careful opening it and ensure you've got something underneath to catch all the excess.

  • My first thing I wanted to replace is effectively the carburator. Since the fuel pump was like 20$ I ordered it at the same time as well. Having oil under the air filter raised a concern, I'm under the impression I might also have a bad head gasket.
    – Eric
    May 10, 2019 at 19:34
  • @Eric - Really, at this point it's all pointing at a fueling problem ... as in way too much. If, before you change the carb, you could clean everything thoroughly and see where everything is happening at. This could tell you if the head gasket is leaking, but really, the head gasket would be leaking compression, not a fuel/oil mixture. You may have a valve cover leakage, which is completely different than the head gasket (and a lot easier to replace). Until you know exactly, it's good not to throw parts at it. Again, you've got the carb coming, so replace it. I'll bet it cures your ills. May 10, 2019 at 19:42
  • Great... Thanks a lot for those valuable comments. Truly hope only that carb is the culprit. It's a cheap and easy fix.
    – Eric
    May 10, 2019 at 19:47
  • Manufacturer recommends using SAE-30 oil. This is what was used the last time, but I just discovered on the oil bottle that it's not for OHV engines. Could that be part of the issues here as well? Sounds like the store here have SAE10W30 for the OHV engines. But I didn't buy this originally because I wanted SAE-30 like it was specified on the engine... Looks like I had non-OHV engine oil in a OHV engine... And gas got mixed with that oil because of a bad carburator... Not good.
    – Eric
    May 10, 2019 at 21:57
  • Hey @Eric we'd love to hear how it went if you were able to fix it!
    – Cullub
    Jun 10, 2019 at 3:22

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.