Weed Eater Dies When It Gets Hot – 7 Common Causes

Weed eaters are important in gardening and lawn maintenance. If your weed eater dies when it gets hot, here are 7 common causes and solutions you can try out.

A weed eater is made of three main parts:

  1. A string line within a rotating head.
  2. An engine powered by petrol, electricity, or a battery.
  3. A long connecting shaft with a handle.

The heat created in the process is typically fanned away into the atmosphere.

Serene garden patio overlooking a lake, ideal for using a weed eater before relaxing.

If the heat is not removed correctly or the engine is overworked, the weed eater can overheat and stop functioning. While most overheating problems are associated with the engine, the string head can also burn out.

If you are experiencing overheating problems with your trimmer, the following checklist will assist you in identifying the issue and solving it.

Overheating In Engines

1. Clogged Cooling System

Most weed eaters have cooling fins around the engine cylinders. The fins help remove hot air from around the engine. These fins also increase the surface area for heat exchange between the engine and the air around the weed trimmer.

They can be clogged by vegetation and other debris during operation, preventing the engine from cooling properly.


The cooling fins can be cleaned using an old toothbrush. To gain access to them, several covers may need to be removed. Your user manual will have details on how to open the covers.

2. Dirty Air Passages In Petrol Engines

The typical air passages in a petrol engine are the air filter and the muffler. Removing particles from the air is the job of the air filter. It ensures the availability of clean and cold air to the engine that is used in combustion. The muffler assists in removing heated exhaust gases from the engine.

If either of these units is blocked, air circulation will be disrupted, and the engine will overheat.


To clear out the air passages, the pads of the air filter can be removed and washed. If the air filter is worn out, replace it with a new one. The muffler can be cleaned with a wire brush.

3. Fuel-related Issues In Petrol Engines

For 2-stroke petrol engines, petrol and oil must be mixed using the correct ratios. If the mixture is done incorrectly and there is too much petrol, the fuel will burn at a higher temperature. This will cause the engine to overheat.


Follow the measurement and mixing instructions provided in the owner’s manual. The fuel and oil must be premixed before pouring into the tank so that they blend evenly. Keep in mind that the fuel and oil mixture can only be used for up to 30 days before it goes bad.

4. The Carburettor Needs An Adjustment (Petrol Engines)

All petrol weed whackers require their carburetor to be adjusted at some point. In the carburetor, petrol and air mix before ignition by the spark plug. If the carburetor feeds too much fuel into the engine, the engine will overheat.


Every carburetor comes with adaptable screws that are used to control the amount of fuel fed into the engine. The instruction manual of your weed eater will detail how to access the carburetor and adjust it.

5. Incorrect Power Supply For Corded Weed Eaters

Electric trimmers experience fewer mechanical issues than petrol ones, but they are also less powerful. Overheating in them is often caused by using a voltage supply that is too high.

For example, a 210-volt supply will cause overheating and damage to a 110-volt machine.


Read your owner’s manual to check what voltage is used by your weed eater. Use an outdoor extension cable that has the correct capacity.

6. Using Battery Weed Eaters For Large Workloads

Battery-powered weed eaters are not as powerful as petrol ones. They can be overworked and overheat if they are used to clear thick and overgrown garden areas.


Clear thickets using a powerful petrol trimmer or other gardening tools. Battery-powered weed eaters should only be used for clearing grass and weeds.

Overheating In The String Head

A Build-up Of Debris Around The String Head

If weeds, other debris, or extra string lines wrap around the shaft, it causes friction and overheating around the string head. Additionally, using a string with a diameter too big for your weed eater can overload and damage its engine.


With the motor off, check if the spool in the string head is easy to move and free of debris. The spool can also be removed to check the movement of the shaft.

Additionally, when trimming long grass, the weed eater must not be pushed too far into the vegetation to prevent overworking and tangling the machine.

Never Work With A Machine That Is Too Hot

Overheating can damage a weed eater beyond repair.

Parts of the string head can melt and fuse, rendering it useless. Additionally, the engine can smoke and burn out spark plugs, plus other units, so that the machine never works again. Overheating also makes the weed eater a fire hazard, especially around dry and flammable vegetation.

You should clean the weed eater after every use before storage. This includes blowing out debris, grass, and weeds from the vents of the weed eater. Use an air compressor to get the best results in blowing out debris and dirt from the vents of the weed eater.

You should also remove dirt and debris from the cutting parts of the weed eater.

Drain petrol fuel from the weed eater before long-term storage. This is because most petrol fuel mixtures are stable for 6 months only.

When storing the weed eater over winter, drain the fuel from the machine and run the weed eater so that it uses up any petrol left in its internal parts such as the carburetor.

The weed eater runs smoothly and without excessive heating in Spring when you use it next. Therefore, if your weed eater dies when it gets hot, you should check your maintenance and storage practices. Make adjustments to the methods where it is necessary.

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