View Full Version : Kawasaki coil problem?

10-14-2009, 05:42 PM
I have a Hustler Hydro WB with a Kawasaki fh500v 17hp engine on it.Lately it sounds like it is running on one cylinder and pretty much dies when the blades are engaged.
Does this mean I have a bad coil? With the engine running I have pulled the left boot(w/ rubber handled pliers) and the engine continues to run. When I pull the right boot the engine immediately dies. Does this infact mean that my left coil needs replaced.

Also, is this a fairly easy fix for me to do on my own? I have the part # for the coil, but just waiting for opinions.

Thanks for all your help and opinions and any tips for getting this mower running again would be greatly appreciated!:cry:


10-14-2009, 08:46 PM
Most likely your are correct although I have seen cases where the coil had corrosion/rust between the coil and the mounting bosses. If they are clean then replace the coil. Restro may come along with his Kaw coil test, but I would say you have a bad coil from the test you describe.

I not aware of Kaw's vendor for coils but certainly they have been a problem. They are about on par with the quality of Lawn Boy coils and thats not good.


10-14-2009, 09:14 PM
Dutch, I just wanted to say thanks to you and restro rob for your help. I have 2 FH500V's and they seem to be nothing but problem! Any input is appreciated.


10-14-2009, 09:54 PM
Tim, a thought came to my mind after thinking about your problem with the coil. It wouldn't hurt to do a compression test on the cylinder with the suspect bad coil. I have been fooled once when I suspected a bad coil but actually found an exhaust valve stuck in the open position in which case the cylinder will not fire.


10-14-2009, 10:40 PM
I just wanted to say thanks to you and restro rob for your help.

Hmmm...... Did I post here before now ? If I did, I don't see it. http://www.clker.com/cliparts/d/5/1/0/11971027381004189690mcol_magnifying_glass.svg.thumb.png

Looks like Dutch has you headed in the right direction Tim, He's the one to Thank.... http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/images/smilies/thumbsup.gif

Good Luck

10-14-2009, 11:34 PM
Don't be so humble Restro. He's thanking you for all the advice you've given in the past which he has read but not necessarily requested. You've been helpful to all of us, Restro, and we appreciate it.


10-15-2009, 01:29 PM
Yah all you have done so far is figured out which cylinder runs and which does not. Now you need to find why. Could be spark, which is easy to check for with a spark tester or a known good plug. Or it could be compression related in which case you have bigger issues.

Most of the ones that come in here running on one cylinder are all clogged with debri causing the head to overheat allowing the exhaust valve guide to drop out of the cylinder head and then hold the exhaust valve open. Time for a new head.

East Coast Lawn Choppers
10-15-2009, 06:42 PM
You can do a quick check for spark with a plug in the wire, I would also do a compression test. We had one that came in here that ran on one cylinder. Pulled the wire it had spark, did a compression test ... had 0 psi pulled it apart and found a broken rod. It broke down near the crank it ran and did no further damage to the block (rebuiltit and it is back in action). So just check it out, but they are famous for coils... we replaced a dozen or so this summer and they were all definitely bad. I have two in the garage right now with bad coils...

10-15-2009, 08:04 PM
Thank you everyone! Im trying to fix this issue myself which probably isnt the right thing to do. Ive had this mower in more than once over the last year and spent almost $900 on parts and labor just on the engine! I was hoping for a quick fix for under $100. If I had a dealer that I trusted, I would take it in tomorrow, but It seems like everytime I take it in they charge me a butt-load and the engine still has issues.

Any more ideas or comments are appreciated! Thanks again everyone!

PS. The engine still leaks a fair amont of oil which is what $700 of what ive spent was supposed to fix, Maybe I should look for a replacement engine????

DT Lawn Care
10-15-2009, 08:17 PM
The EXACT same thing just happened to my dad on his same motor. SAME exact thing we thought, coil, bought a coil, THEN checked it out. BAD IDEA. Coil was fine, turns out the valve pushrod FELL OFF. Coil was like $60 or something, bought new pushrods and gaskets, ends up at $10. So make sure to check your spark and compression before assuming its a coil. Compression test will definitely tell you something. Good Luck

East Coast Lawn Choppers
10-15-2009, 11:28 PM
Those engines are not that expensive new. The oil leaks could be crank seal or most likely govenor seal. Both cheap fixes if you can do it yourself... but when you are at the mercy of the dealer it can get very expensive.