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John Deere

August 10, 2020

Troubleshooting Your John Deere Riding Mower

Provided you’re diligent about caring for and maintaining your John Deere riding mower, there’s no reason it can’t provide you with several years’ worth of lovely yard work. While only using it for the jobs for which it was intended and making sure it’s properly maintained goes a long way towards extending the mower’s life, knowing how to troubleshoot and correct problems also reduces your stress and allows you greater independence. Let’s look at a few common problems and their possible solutions.

Mower Won’t Start

When the mower won’t start, there are several, easily correctable reasons.

It’s possible that the mower is low on fuel, or if you’ve had the machine in storage for more than 30 days, there could be more water than fuel in the tank. Getting some fresh gasoline into the tank should correct the problem. Don’t panic if it takes a few tries before the mower starts. It takes a little while for the fresh fuel to cycle through the gas lines. The gas you use should have a minimum octane rating of 87, and higher is actually better.

If the mower still acts like it’s out of gas, disconnect the gas line. If you don’t get any gas droplets, you need a new in-line filter.

If the machine doesn’t even try to start, the battery could be the issue. Use a wire brush to clean the connections. Check to make sure they’re securely bolted to the battery, and apply some di-electric grease to the cables. If none of this works, hook the battery to a battery charger for a few hours and see if that resolves the problem. If the battery constantly needs to be re-jumped each time you mow your lawn, it’s time to pick up a replacement battery.

Power Decreases Before You’re Done Mowing

There are a couple of different reasons your John Deere riding mower experiences a power decrease half way through a job.

The first thing you should do is analyze the grass you’re cutting. It it’s thick or tall, raise the mower deck and take a couple of different passes over the spot. If the grass is short, the next thing to check is the mower deck itself. If there are lots of clippings and other debris beneath the deck, cleaning it should resolve the problem.

If neither of these options resolve the matter, check the spark plugs and air filter. If they’re dirty, clean them. If they’re old or damaged, a replacement will have your mower operating at full power again.

Smoke Starts Billowing up From Under Your Mower

The sight of smoke rising up from the underside of your mower is a heart stopping experience. The first thing you need to do is turn the machine off, dismount it, and give it a few minutes to cool down. At this point, it’s safe to check out the mower deck. In most cases, simply cleaning the mower deck and making sure the discharge isn’t blocked resolves the matter. If it doesn’t, the blades may need to be replaced. If, however, you find that the blades are in great shape, it’s time to have a mechanic check your mower out.

Have questions about how to troubleshoot your John Deere riding mower or you're interested in getting a new one? Contact Hurst Farm Supply.


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