Mantis Tillers FAQ
Here you will find a list of frequently asked questions about Mantis Tillers.
Why won't my tiller start – it has been stored away for a few months?
You may have to clean the carburetor of old fuel or replace the gaskets and diaphragms. If the tiller is stored with even a small amount of old fuel (older than 30 days) in the tank, it can clog the carburetor and cause deterioration of the gaskets and diaphragms.
Drain out the old fuel and dispose of it properly. Once the fuel tank is empty, push the primer bulb on your tiller 7 or 8 times to clear out any fuel in the carburetor. Empty the fuel tank again. Next, mix fresh fuel in the correct ratio and fill the fuel tank. Push the primer bulb 11 or 12 times to pull the fresh fuel through the carburetor and let the tiller sit for about thirty (30) minutes. Then press the primer bulb an additional 11 to 12 times to flush out any residue. You should now be able to start your tiller using the standard starting procedure.
If parts are needed, they are available factory-direct by calling 1.800.366.6268.
Note: Do not use carburetor cleaner. Doing so will void Echo engine manufacturer warranty.
Updated April 11, 2003
Why don't I see a spark on my spark plug when I test it, I think my coil is bad?
Most likely the coil is not bad on your machine. It is rare that a coil can fail because it is completely sealed and electronic. The coil is a very low sparking one and can only be properly tested with a 3-point ignition tester. You will not see or feel a spark by grounding the plug. We recommend having the coil tested by your local Mantis dealer.
How often do I change my air filter?
We recommend cleaning the air filter daily or after every 4 hours of use. It should be replaced every 3 months or 100 hours of use.
Why is my engine bogging down when I give it full throttle?
Your air filter or your spark arrestor (muffler screen) may be clogged and not allowing the engine to breathe properly. This will cause it to act as if the choke is on and bog down under a load. Replace your air filter and check the muffler screen to make sure it is clean.
Why is my engine really hot?
You may not have enough oil in your gas mixture to properly lubricate the engine. Always make sure you use the proper 50:1 mixture ratio; that is 2.6 ounces of oil to 1 gallon of 89 octane or higher gasoline. Convenient, pre-measured bottles of premium 2-cycle engine oil are available via our online shopping. Also, there may be a buildup of dirt or debris on the cooling fins of the engine; make sure they are kept clean.
Why won't my tines turn when the engine revs up?
Most likely the engine has come unseated properly from the transmission. Check the base of the engine to make sure it is sitting all the way down on the transmission and the gold colored bolt is secure.
My rope pulls out with no resistance, why won't it turn the engine?
There may be some dirt or debris in your pawl catcher assemply causing them to stick. Remove the 4 screws on the starter assembly and lift it off the tiller. Looking down on the tiller, on top of the flywheel, you will see a gold-colored dish with 2 black levers inside.The levers are called pawl catchers. Use a piece of 80-grit sandpaper and slide it under each pawl. Move the pawl back and forth 10-12 times. This will clean the debris out and smooth the pawls. Replace the starter assembly.
Can I use any lithium grease in my transmission?
No, you cannot; you must use lithium 0 weight grease, double-zero weight is too free-flowing and may not lubricate the gears properly. White lithium is the same way.
How often should I replace my fuel filter?
Your fuel filter should be replaced every 3 months or 100 hours of use.
How do I maintain my tines?
After each use, remove and clean the tines. Then spray both the tines and the tine shaft with WD-40 or some other light lubricant to protect them from rust. This will also prevent the tines from "freezing" onto the tine shaft.
How do I get replacement tilling/cultivating tines?
Tilling/cultivating tines are guaranteed for life against breakage. If your tines are broken, please package them up and send them to us at: Mantis, 1028 Street Road, Southampton, PA 18966. Be sure to include a note that says you want your tines replaced according to our warranty. Also include your name, address, city, state, zip code, and telephone number.
If your tilling/cultivating tines are bent or worn and you wish to replace them, you will find them on our Tiller Accessories page. Or call us toll-free at 1.800.366.6268 to purchase new ones.
Should I replace the air filter on my Mantis Gas Tiller?
Clean air filters will assist in ensuring optimum performance for your Mantis Gas Tiller. The filters do not clean very well and once dirt infiltrates the fibers of the air filter, the possibility of your engine seizing from dirt ingestion increases Two styles of air filters are available for your Mantis 2-cycle Gas Tiller. Our Standard air filters are available in a package of six (Part Number M9994). Our Premium air filters are available individually (Part Number 9118).
Why should I walk backwards when using the Mantis Tiller?
Because of the design of the blades (tines) and the light weight of the machine, the tiller digs into the soil by using resistance. The Mantis tiller is designed to be used in a fashion very similar to running a vacuum cleaner. It’s not necessary to continuously walk backward, many users find it comfortable to stand in one spot, allow the tiller to walk forward and then slowly pull it backwards, allowing it to dig into the soil. Then go forward at a different angle and pull it back again. If you prefer, it will also work to walk slowly backward the length of your garden. By tilling this way, you don’t have to walk through your freshly tilled soil.