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View Full Version : Kohler or Kawasaki?


mloolara
02-15-2005, 11:49 PM
I am looking to buy the Scag Tiger Cub- 48" advantage deck. I can purchase it with the 19 HP Kawasaki or for $100 more, I can get the 20 HP Kohler. I keep hearing differring opinions on which is a better engine. Can anyone tell me from personal experience? Also, is this enough horsepower for cutting 4 acres a week and possible mulching at times here in Louisiana where it can be wetter and maybe thicker due to our weather patterns? By the way, this is strictly for resdiential purposes and not commercial so I want something that is going to last and also give me a good cut.

Turf Dancer
02-16-2005, 02:01 AM
First off I can't comment on the Louisiana question, as for the engine I would go with the Kawasaki. I have had too many problems with Kohler engines over the years and I have had very few with the Kawasaki. Besides the Kawasaki has more torque, Scag also puts a 21 Kawasaki on that same machine.
Good Luck

lawncare4u
02-16-2005, 07:02 AM
:cool2: KAWASAKI ALL THE WAY,GOT 2 KA AND I KOHLER AND THE OTHER GUY MENTIONED MORE TORQUE.............KAWASAKI,KAWASAKI :waving:

Travis Followell
02-16-2005, 07:40 AM
I'd say go with Kohler. Thats all we run and they are great engines and we are never broke down. We've never owned a Kawasaki so I can't really comment on their performance but the Kohlers have worked out great for us.

Mark McC
02-16-2005, 07:58 AM
I can't say for certain about where everyone gets their torque figures for Kawasaki and Kohler engines, but take a look at the links below. The first link is to Kawasaki's site, which lists the 19 as having just under 30 ft-lbs. of torque at 3,600 rpm. The second like goes to Kohler's site and lists figures for the Command Pro, which is listed as having 32.6 ft-lbs of torque at 2,600 rpm.

Now granted those are different rpm settings and the Kawasaki may indeed sport more torque than the Kohler at an operating setting like 3,600, but how can anyone here at Lawnsite know? Don't get me wrong, I have one Kawasaki and am about to get another, so I'm not biased toward Kohler, but it seems to me we assume a lot, given how little information we actually have.

To me, the bottom line is that both manufacturers are quite good and if Scag felt there was a problem with the Kohler, they wouldn't use it. Too many other engines out there, what with Briggs' upgrade line of engines and Honda's entry into this segment.

By the way, many here on Lawnsite like to say that you get what you pay for. They would NEVER be caught dead with a homeowner unit like my Deere L110 (a feeling I'm sympathetic to now, lol). So if more money means better performance, and the extra charge is for the Kohler 20, the Kohler is a better buy.

Kawasaki

http://www.kawpowr.com/

Kohler

http://www.kohlerengines.com/onlinecatalog/detail.jsp?prod_num=Command+PRO+CV20

grass_cuttin_fool
02-16-2005, 08:07 AM
The kawasaki engines seem to have more torque. I have a tiger cub with the 48'' 20hp kohler combo and it is ok. I dont mulch but when I put a very high lift blade on it the 20hp has to really work, just what i know if I was going to mulch I would want a lil more motor

westwind
02-16-2005, 09:11 AM
Kawasaki, there's really no choice here. dependability and productivity are what Kawi. is all about. :p :p

Rollacosta
02-16-2005, 09:19 AM
i have got kohler engines on my stump cutters ,they seem to run a bit rough for the first 30-50 hours but after that they run very well imo ,1 of my machines has 500 hour's on it and the engine has not had a problem...i reckon either engine will serve you well

Soupy
02-16-2005, 09:23 AM
In my experience kawasaki consumes more oil and their air filters cost to much. They are good engines, but I prefer Kohler.

sawman65
02-16-2005, 09:34 AM
tack it from a dealer,DO NOT GET THE KAW.in the past five years i have done way more warranty work on the kaw. than i have done on kohler.they hold up better last longer and when you wear one out you can short block it the kaw is a throwaway

LawnsRUsInc.
02-16-2005, 10:12 AM
Ford is better than dodge, Chevy all the way. Its a personal preference but you can get only ideas every person might have a problem here or there but i wont buy anything with an engine unless it has a kawi. When i started out in business i had 2 walk behinds on a trailer and would leave them out in the snow all winter and they would start up on the 2nd pull every spring never a question. For hand tools i buy only stihl. These are the engines that i have had little to absolutely no problems with. Oh buy the way we still own that first scag 12.5 kawi and with 3900 hrs it still runs like new the only thing we have done to it was rebuild the carb for $50 in what 7-8 years.

Jason

mkwl
02-16-2005, 04:51 PM
Get the Kawasaki engine!!!! I have a 15 HP Kawi V-Twin engine on my Bob-Cat WB (which I love!!!). I have had absolutely NO problems with it at all!!!! If you want the best engine available get the Kawasaki engine!!!!

mkwl
02-16-2005, 04:55 PM
tack it from a dealer,DO NOT GET THE KAW.in the past five years i have done way more warranty work on the kaw. than i have done on kohler.they hold up better last longer and when you wear one out you can short block it the kaw is a throwaway

It is clear thet you have NO idea what you are talking about!!!! Anyone in their right mind knows that Kawasaki engines are much better engines and are much more reliable than Kohler engines!!!

Soupy
02-16-2005, 05:17 PM
It is clear thet you have NO idea what you are talking about!!!! Anyone in their right mind knows that Kawasaki engines are much better engines and are much more reliable than Kohler engines!!!

Yea, and your 14 and have been in business for 5 years :laugh: :laugh:! Just how many Kohler and Kawi engines have you owned in your years of wisdom?

Love2Mow
02-16-2005, 05:30 PM
It is clear thet you have NO idea what you are talking about!!!! Anyone in their right mind knows that Kawasaki engines are much better engines and are much more reliable than Kohler engines!!!




Ill take a KAW any day over a POS Kohler. KAWs are more durable espescially the pull cords. On a Kohler the guts on the recoil are plastic. On a KAW they are metal. HUGE difference.

sawman65
02-16-2005, 06:42 PM
It is clear thet you have NO idea what you are talking about!!!! Anyone in their right mind knows that Kawasaki engines are much better engines and are much more reliable than Kohler engines!!!


listen i am not going to have a battle of witts with an un-armed boy.i was mearly trying to help someone out with his choice of engines.you obviously
are slanted towards kawasaki engines have you ever owned a kohler?do you put 500 plus hours on your mower yearly??because the guys i sell mowers to do and the kawasaki engines are lucky to go 1500 hr this is less than 3 years
on that engine kaw says that is a good life for a comercial engine i and many others say it's not so before you go and make a stupid reply like you did.do
your homework. aw heck i was not going to do this but.
i have been in this busness for over 20 years and have sold many lines of equipment what is a bobcat anyway???? never heard of them do they cut grass?????

sawman65
02-16-2005, 06:45 PM
the guts on the kaw recoils are plastic i had to fix one today

Love2Mow
02-16-2005, 06:48 PM
the guts on the kaw recoils are plastic i had to fix one today





Strange, mine are all metal

sawman65
02-16-2005, 06:53 PM
do you have the fh series? that is the engine we are talking about

Love2Mow
02-16-2005, 06:56 PM
do you have the fh series? that is the engine we are talking about




Nope, i use the FCs

sawman65
02-16-2005, 07:01 PM
single cylinder huh the pullys are plastic but the starter pawls are metal right?

Love2Mow
02-16-2005, 07:04 PM
single cylinder huh the pullys are plastic but the starter pawls are metal right?



Everything is metal on mine. The only thing that isnt is the rope!

sawman65
02-16-2005, 07:12 PM
ok your's must be metal never seen one but you never know

lawnprosteveo
02-16-2005, 11:44 PM
IMO, the kawasaki is a better engine. I've ran both and the Kaw just seems to have more power and starts easier. Dont have anymore facts than that...

Kelly's Landscaping
02-17-2005, 12:01 AM
I have had better luck with my 2 Kawasaki motors over the 6 Kohlers I have but the 2 are on very seldom used equipment so itís not a fair fight. I will say the 15 hp Kawi will start with in 2 pulls after it sits all winter it always shocks me how easy it starts. On the other hand 3 of my Kohlers are electric start so maybe they would have started easily as well.

The one thing I did notice this summer was I took my lazer to the dealer it was having electrical problems on the Kohler motor. There were 9 other ZTRs there waiting to be serviced 2 scag and 7 exmark 8 of them were Kawasaki engines not sure what that meant but I was expecting it to be the other way around.

ztrx
02-17-2005, 12:17 AM
Every used mower that I have ever ran through my shop that had a kawasaki engine had major problems. The vertical shaft engines would shell out the upper crank bearing. If you do buy Kawasaki make sure you get the heavy duty cannister air filter system!

jaguar4000
02-17-2005, 10:29 AM
around here the Kohler is preferred more, especially when you get up to the bigger ztr engines. Know of alot of people that have had probs w/ the bigger kawi's.

Legacy
02-19-2005, 05:57 PM
Kohler....making much better engines these days....Kawasaki really fell off when they started building the engines here in the states....

Texas Mower Parts
02-19-2005, 06:53 PM
We sell 10:1 Kawi's over Kohlers. They start easier, last long, their quieter, and they use less fuel. I think Kohler engines are good, but Kawi's are better. My .02.

oldturf
02-20-2005, 01:48 AM
Do a search on "Kaw recall" and you will find out quite a bit about the 19 hp.

Mark McC
02-20-2005, 10:53 AM
Below is a link to a thread started by Dennis F on the subject of the Kawaski problems of last year. My dealer says that the KAI series of engines addresses this problem. I sure hope so, 'cause my next mower sports a KAI 19.

http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=88032

Fareway Lawncare
02-20-2005, 11:07 AM
The Horizontal Air Filter Arrangement on the New KAI series Kaws is not as Good as the Vertical Filter on the old Kaws....The new filter Arrangement clogs up Much Faster and Needs to be Cleaned Daily...the Old filters we could clean Weekly...I believe that the reason they Switched is simply for Ease of Maint...The old verticals tended to be a Pain to Service...

So far the KAI series have been a Step Down...We'll know for sure after a Few Thousand Hours.