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  1. #1

    Default Honda BF15A problem.

    Hello everyone. This is my first post. Been surfing the site for a few months and it is a great help. I have a new to me Honda BF15A 4stroke. 2006 I believe. I picked it up a few months ago, it had been sitting for a couple years. It started up and I replaced the impeller prop to get the water cooling working great. Motor started up just fine and ran good. Took it out and it ran just fine.

    I ran the motor out of gas and it sat for a couple weeks. Now when I go to start it it turns over and runs for a few seconds and stalls. I can't get it to stay running. I had the motor in my garage over those two weeks and it stayed mostly warm. I did leave the fuel line and tank outside and it did snow one night.

    What should I try? I am open to giving it a try but I know nothing about these engines so I am looking for some advice on this one. It ran so good and now it won't stay running.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Well, I'm not the resident expert of the site (that's hondadude, as you probably already know from your surfing) but the last BF15 A I see listed on boats.net is a 2002. For clarity, check out the two links below:

    This is the carburetor page for a 15 A:

    http://www.boats.net/parts/search/Ho...TOR/parts.html

    And this is the carb for a D model, electroc start, year 2003 and later:

    http://www.boats.net/parts/search/Ho...TO)/parts.html

    Anyway, back to your problem. Make sure that your vent screw on your gas tank is fully open. Even very experienced skippers forget to open the vent and suffer stalling until they double check.

    If that's ok, try constantly squeezing the primer bulb and see if you can keep it running doing that. If so, it's starving for fuel. The primer bulb should stay "pumped up" and firm anytime the engine os running. And, it should stay firm for quite some time....hours....after the engine is shut down. If it is easily going soft and "squishy", the fuel line FROM the tank to the bulb might be pulling in air from a pinhole or a bad fitting connection. Also, the bulb itself could be bad with a leaking internal check valve allowing fuel to drain back into the tank.

    Is the fuel nice and fresh? Gas goes bad quickly these days and if it was a bit aged before you parked the outboard, the additional two weeks could have put it over the time limit of 1 to 2 months of reliable storage.

    It is NEVER a good idea to allow snow or rain to fall on the tank. Today's alcohol tainted fuels thirstilly absorb moisture and water contamination can occur surprisingly quickly. Take a fuel sample from the bottom of the tank and place it in a clear container. Use a turkey baster bulb and suck up the fuel from the bottom after you've allowed the tank to sit undisturbed on a level surface for about 20 minutes. If there's water in the fuel, you will see it settle out in your test container after allowing that to sit for a few minutes.

    Address the above suggestions, identify which carb you have and then come back with your findings. I'm sure we can help get you up and running.

    Good luck,
    JimmyD
    Last edited by jgmo; 10-24-2017 at 10:38 AM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Thank you jgmo.

    Vent on tank is open. I learned that lesson long time ago.

    I did try pumping the bulb with no luck. The bulb is firm and honestly it was always firm. In other words when I plug in the fuel and start to pump the bulb feels firm from the get go. I am unable to get the bulb to fully colapse and rebound as if it is pumping fuel into the engine. I removed the connectors from the fuel line and tested the bulb, I kept the connector on the tank and pumped the bulb and it pumped gas back into the tank no problem. I removed the connector and placed the second one onto the end of the line by the tank and tried again, same thing, pumped fine. I ordered new connectors since they are cheap enough figured why not.

    I did notice that when I tried one connector plugged into the engine it would leak gas, when I pumped the bulb gas would leak all around the connection to the engine. Outside of the engine between the connector and the edge of the engine. I swapped the connectors putting that one on the tank side and the connection to the engine seamed good but like I mentioned above, I pump the bulb and it feels firm with only a little give.

    Both the tank and the fuel line were left outside during a recent snow storm we had here in Colorado. So yes the tank and fuel line got wet. I put fresh gas into the tank but it mixes with about a 3/4 gallon that was already in the tank.

    I am going to give it a try again this weekend. I will report back with my results.

    Thank you for the reply, I appreciate the help.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    You're welcome. If you could look at the parts web pages in the links I sent and positively identify your carburetor type (which would narrow down the outboard's age) I could give you a couple of additional things to try.

    Keep smiling if you can!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    The carburator is the one in the first link above.

    The engine hood is 2006 on the back.
    Last edited by ifisherman; 10-24-2017 at 12:37 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Well, if it's the first carb, that's the older one so I'm not sure about the date on the cover but it indicates that the outboard is a 2002 or older.

    Which isn't necessarily a bad thing in my opinion. The older carb and fuel system is a bit simpler and would be easier for an owner to clean or rebuild than the newer models.

    The fact that you say the primer bulb is hard is also good. That indicates the fuel system is "full up" and;
    A. There are no leaks
    B. The float valve is sealing well

    I suppose the next thing I would want to know is if you can get the outboard to stay running by applying the choke. Have you tried doing that? If you can keep her lit with the choke pulled out some, that would narrow it pretty succinctly to being a carb issue.

    Also, I saw where you wanted to post pictures. Yes the site will allow you to do that but I don't think I've ever tried. I know that some people have trouble uploading photos but most eventually get it done.
    Last edited by jgmo; 10-24-2017 at 01:10 PM.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    I was not able to get it running with the choke out. It would fire up but it would stall out within a second or two.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Well, this is where I may lose you but I have to try. So, here goes......

    At this point, we still don't know, for a fact, if it's stalling because of a lack of fuel or a lack of spark. The fact that it fires at all indicates it has spark at least for a short time but that is no guarantee that the ignition isn't cutting out just after start up.

    The only way to prove positively that it is not getting adequate fuel and that the ignition is performing as it should would be to introduce an artificial fuel source to see if it will continue on that. The best and safest way to accomplish this is to introduce PROPANE gas into the carburetor intake. This method ensures low risk of fire and or personal injury and is also the best way to avoid damaging your engine in the process. Of course, it takes a propane fuel source to do this and an inexpensive plumbers torch and a small container of propane. Both are available at most hardware stores. You simply stick the end of the UNLIT torch into the carb inlet and turn the gas valve on. Having a helper pull the engine over is a plus.
    This works reliably because the propane mixes so well with the surrounding air and does so in almost an ideal ratio for running an internal combustion engine.

    But, I know many people can't seem to grasp this and will revert to using "starting fluid" or ether. They should have named that stuff EVIL instead of ether because it has ruined many an engine when used incorrectly. It is EXPLOSIVE and can be DANGEROUS. It damages engines because it explodes in the combustion chamber and doesn't burn at all like gasoline or propane. It takes little chunks of metal from pistons, rings, cylinder wall and valve edges with almost every revolution. I always advise to avoid using it except in an emergency.

    Anyway, it's your call. The next step is up to you.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Long story shortened. Had same problem with BF30A. My fault, newbie, didn't open vent on tank, sucked water from separator, Hurricane Irma visited, 4 weeks later and after cleaning out fuel system and new separator motor would only start on full choke for a few seconds, would not idle at all. Drained all the gas, pulled plugs...added 16 oz of seafoam and 16 oz of gas to clean tank. pumped gas through each carb with carb drain open one at a time. Turned motor over several revolutions to make sure 50/50 mix of seafoam and gas are through the entire carb system. I let it set for 4 days. Flushed fuel system out and replenished tank with fresh gas with stabil treatment. Again pump gas through each carb with it drain open. With the spark plugs removed, turn the motor over several revolutions. Put plugs back in and attached everything the way it is suppose to be and then went to start it. It started and warmed up at 2000 rpm nicely. Brought fast idle lever down and engine idles at 900 rpm. For me, this was a lazy mans shot of using a "magic" additive in lieu of removing the carbs and doing a thorough cleaning due to water intrusion. This time it worked for me as the engine was just completely rebuilt less than 50 running hours ago. Hope this helps...

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    After going back over this and re-reading your first answer back to me I saw something that escaped me the first time.

    You stated that the connector to the engine leaked so you swapped it with the one at the tank and put the one from the tank in it's place.

    Are you sure that fuel is going through the line and through that connection and then on to the fuel pumped? I mean...could it be as simple as that connector isn't allowing fuel to flow?
    Those are quick disconnect fittings aren't They? If so, I have seen them wear out and not open wide enough for fuel to pass through. The fact that you say the primer bulb stays hard all the time after you swapped those connectors around makes me suspicious.

    If you remove the fuel line going to the carb and squeeze the bulb, fuel should easily pump out of the end of that hose. If you try this, make sure you catch the fuel in a suitable container and NO SMOKING! :)

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    ON second thought, just open the carb drain and see if fuel flows after the bowl is empty. If the fuel doesn't easily pump this way, THEN remove the hose and try it that way.
    Last edited by jgmo; 10-25-2017 at 06:39 AM.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Snow and rain on your fuel line and tank won't hurt it, boats are left on moorings in the rain year round and as long as the tank and lines are not leaking, you will not get water into the line.

    The 2006 on the cover means it meets 2006 emissions, I have that sticker on my 2001.

    I've never had gas go bad in 1 or 2 months, it usually takes 6 months or more. If you are using ethanol gas, ethanol can create water in your tank if it sits for a while, the gas is not bad, but there is water on the bottom with gas floating on the top. Your pickup inside the tank is on the bottom so if there is water in there, you engine has been picking that up, not the gas.

    Drain your tank and see if there is water in the tank, you didn't say if you tried that? If you did get water into your carbs, what Bruce58 said above is a good thing to do to start with. Not sure if you have water in there if it would run on propane or not.

    Don

  13. #13

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    I should add, I had this problem on a 4 carb 2 stroke Evinrude, I got water in the fuel. One carb had a corroded needle and was stuck in its seat after the motor had sat unused over the winter.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Yes I ordered new connectors because I read that they are cheap and often fail. That was my thought too that not enough fuel is getting into the engine due to the connection. I will try new connections this weekend and see how that goes.

    Like I mentioned when I connect the fuel line and squeeze the bulb I would expect that the bulb would compress fully as it pushed fuel into the system but it does not do that. If feels pretty hard from the first squeeze. Honestly it feels the same when I squeeze the bulb with the line disconnected, its like it just doesn't go through. Reason I mention that the fuel line was left outside in a snow storm is because I am thinking did that rust the connection or do something to make it fail. Maybe who knows.

    One connection when placed on the end of the line at the engine leaked gas at that connection on the outside of the engine so that clearly was not getting gas into the engine. Maybe the connection on the engine is blocked with something.

    At one point I pumped and pumped the bulb many many times thinking that if it was only letting a little gas in maybe I could get enough pumps in to get the engine to run a bit longer but same result, it fires up and instantly stalls out.

    Also I tried a few times to pump the bulb as soon as the engine starts but it still stalls. So clearly the pumping of the bulb did not get gas into the engine.

    I also opened the drain on the carb and some gas came out but not much at all. Barley enough to put a few wet spots on a paper towel. It definitely did not drain a decent amount of gas.

    I am going to clean up the fuel line and use the new connectors this weekend and start there. I will also check the tank to see if it has water in it.

    Thank you everyone, I really appreciate the help!

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Clean the carburetor.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Be careful with that sticker on the back of Honda's. It may, or may not actually be a 2006. That 2006 decal indicates that the motor meets the 2006 EPA standards, not that it was built in 2006. There should be a build year on a tag somewhere on the motor (my 2000 BF25 has it) or it can be decoded by the serial number.

    Is quite confusing, and I see a number of 2006 Honda Outboards come up for sale in for sale groups that are clearly not 2006 models.

    Quote Originally Posted by ifisherman View Post
    The carburator is the one in the first link above.

    The engine hood is 2006 on the back.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Perfect thanks. I was confused about this because the engine cover clearly has the older style compared to the new ones but it has the big 2006 printed on the hood. In the end I don't really care what year it is, just want to get it running or get it out of my hands so I can move on to a new one.

    Thank you for the info, appreciate it.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Everything that has been said so far makes sense....except one thing bothers me.....

    way in the beginning, ifisherman said that he switched the fuel connectors on the fuel line and both were able to attach to the tank.

    Honda has different connectors at either end of the fuel line. It is possible that one or both if the connectors were evinrude connectors. They look very much the same and will go on the engine fitting. The evinrude fitting will generally leak.

    The Honda tank fitting is no a 2 prong fitting...so without seeing it, I would guess that it may be an evinrude fitting on the tank. That is ok, as long as both fittings at the tank are the same brand.

    This is probably not THE problem, but it could be A problem.

    Mike

    Sorry for any typos....i am trying to recover from a rather serious shoulder injury and I am trying to type with one hand. I may have to switch to voice dictation soon..

    Also,,,,post your frame serial number and we will know the year for sure.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Success. Thanks for all the tips. I ended up cleaning the carb and it did the trick. There was a good amount of dirt and junk in the carb and I got it all cleaned up. Getting the carb off and open was simple so all went smooth. Engine runs great again.

    She stalls out if I turn the tiller handle all the way down to slow. That is with the choke all the way in, if the choke is out a bit she will idle with handle down to slow.

    Thanks again everyone. I appreciate the tips and help. I am sure I will be back with more questions soon.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Glad to hear you got it. Not sure I like the idea of it stalling at low speed though. Do you have the idle set too low maybe? These twins like to idle at up around 900rpm or so.
    Setting them to idle below about 700 rpm will cause consistent stalling. Not good when maneuvering in tight quarters.
    But, again, congrats on an effective clean up.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    How do I adjust the idle?

    After starting it she runs and idles good with the choke in and the throttle just a bit below the start position. If I turn the throttle down all the way to Slow it will start to sputter and stall out. I can pull the choke out about half way and it will idle solid at Slow.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    It sounds like she is running a tad lean. Did you remove the idle MIXTURE screw and blow out the idle circuit when you did your cleaning?

    Have you tried backing the idle mix screw out some? It's not easy for me to suggest what to do since I don't know what you've tried.

    If you had the idle mix screw out, you should have replaced the oring under the screw head. Then, when you put the screw back in, you should screw it in until it LIGHTLY bottoms out. Then, back it out 2 1/2 turns.

    The other little screw....the idle SPEED screw....is it's tip touching the throttle plate lever on the side of the carb? If not, screw it in until it touches plus 1 additional turn.

    If backing out or screwing in the MIXTURE screw seems to have little to no effect, the carb idle circuit is probably still not completely clean.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    I don't think I cleaned that screw. Is it accessible on the outside of the carb? If so I did not clean that one but will do so soon.

    I removed the carb, opened the carb hood(held on with 4 screws) and cleaned out the junk, sprayed some carb cleaner and made sure it was all out. On top of the float was a screw I removed and inside that was a long gold medal peice that I removed and cleaned. On the side of that opening was a small hole I cleaned as well. Put it all back together and it started running again.

    I did watch a video on adjusting the idle on a small honda 5hp and they removed a screw that was accessible on the outside of the carb. That screw had a small hole through it that they cleaned out with wire. If my carb has that screw I did not clean it.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Honda BF15A problem.

    Go back and look at the diagram in the top link of the two that I first sent you. The idle MIX screw is item #5. Note the oring that accompanies the screw and it's spring.

    If you take the carb back off, look in the end of the "throat" up at the top. Look closely and you will find a TINY hole. That is the idle "orifice".

    That orifice is where the gas mix comes out after it passes by the tip of the MIX screw.

    If you prop open the plate that is just in front of that orifice, and look closely in that same general area of the carb throat, you will find a couple more TINY holes that the plate uncovers when opened up. Those are your transition and hi speed orifices.

    You should at least try using the straw that came with your carb spray can and carefully cover each tiny hole with the straw tip and blast away into each one in turn. This is MUCH more efficient with the carb disassembled and the idle screw removed.

    I DO NOT recommend using wire to do this as it could inadvertently cause those orifices to become enlarged. Accidentally enlarging the precisely drilled passages could upset fuel mixture "balance" and eventually ruin the carb. Besides, spraying them clean...first one way and then the other....is more effective at getting them clean.

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