Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Measure Briggs & Stratton’s Engine Power?

Posted in Specifications

There are two ways you can measure an engine's power:

  • horsepower
  • gross torque rating

Find out how we differentiate the two types and where to find your engine/shorsepower or torque value.

What’s the difference between horsepower and torque value of my engine?

With our small engines that power walk-behind lawn mowers, pressure washers, tillers, and other specific applications, Briggs & Stratton uses gross torque ratings to measure the engine’s power rather than horsepower.

While horsepower has been traditionally been used for these applications to measure engine power, torque values are not new for engines. Gross Torque is the immediate twisting force required to turn a blade or pump at a given moment. Thus, torque is the way to measure the rotational force a machine can produce - i.e. exactly what a walk behind mower does as it cuts grass or a pressure washer as it pumps water - and a more accurate way to describe the capability or job capacity of an engine.

However, horsepower is still used to measure the power of our larger engines. These models are often used in applications such as a riding mower engines that may require power to be distributed to multiple areas of the equipment (such as transmission, wheels, hydraulics, etc.).

Where can I find my Briggs & Stratton engine’s horsepower or torque rating?

You can find the gross horsepower or torque value labeled on your engine.

To find an engine’s horsepower, look for a number with “HP” or “cc.”

If you are uncertain as to the gross torque or horsepower rating of your engine, please contact our Briggs & Stratton Answer Center by email or phone (800) 444-7774 (8:00 am - 5:00 pm CST) with your Engine Model, Type, and Code Numbers, and we will be happy to assist you.

For additional information regarding engine horsepower or torque value, please view our "Get to Know Torque" video below:

Engine Power Rating Information

Power Ratings: The gross power rating for individual gasoline engine models is labeled in accordance with SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) code J1940 Small Engine Power & Torque Rating Procedure, and is rated in accordance with SAE J1995. Torque values are derived at 2600 RPM for those engines with “rpm” called out on the label and 3060 for all others; horsepower values are derived at 3600 RPM. The gross power curves can be viewed at www.BRIGGSandSTRATTON.COM. Net power values are taken with exhaust and air cleaner installed whereas gross power values are collected without these attachments. Actual gross engine power will be higher than net engine power and is affected by, among other things, ambient operating conditions and engine to-engine variability. Given the wide array of products on which engines are placed, the gasoline engine may not develop the rated gross power when used in a given piece of power equipment. This difference is due to a variety of factors including, but not limited to, the variety of engine components (air cleaner, exhaust, charging, cooling, carburetor, fuel pump, etc.), application limitations, ambient operating conditions (temperature, humidity, altitude), and engine-to-engine variability. Due to manufacturing and capacity limitations, Briggs & Stratton may substitute an engine of higher rated power for this engine.

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