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are 26hp kohers any good?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by tlcgrounds, Nov 26, 2000.

  1. tlcgrounds

    tlcgrounds LawnSite Member
    Posts: 133

    It seems that walker has used this motor for a while if I'm correct. I'd like some feed back on the use of these engines. Any Problems and if there are units running flawlessly let me here form you too.
  2. landscaper3

    landscaper3 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,354

    We have had 1 16hp Kohler, Walker mower with 2000hrs no motor problem sold to get 1 1996 20 hp kohler Walker put 1800hrs on it traded in on a new, back in 98 a 25hp kohler Walker still have under 1000hrs runs great and got a 2001 26EFI only 200hrs but is awsome. Three local companys I am acually friends with them also all have Walker mowers and they NEVER had any problems neither did the New England Distributer we buy our Walkers through. And we run one through the winter too.
  3. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,555

    The 26hp seem to be a good engine,I dont know how because its basically the same as the dreaded 25hp.The month I had my head gaskets blow,my dealer had 31 sets of head gaskets done,and it was only the 24th of the month!They swappped 2 25's that month too.They are not a huge dealer either,1/2 of the engines werent even on mowers,there were chippers,gensets,and powerwashers.they do more than one set a day in the summer time.
  4. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    I have a 26EFI in a Walker MTGHS, bought it in June 2000. Had a 25Hp from 98 and it was junk. I could have mowed faster with an old push reel because the 25 was unreliable.
    The 26 uses less gas, has more power and after 210 hours I have not had 1 problem. Kohler has made some changes to the motor as it is basically the 25 shell with diagnostics and much redsign. Time will tell but I really like it. It starts on the second turn EVERY time, cold or hot. I like the idea of the computer diagnostics, haven't had to use it (hope I never do) but its nice to have it if needed.

    Make whatever choice you wish but my advise to you is stay far away from the 25's. Good Luck
  5. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,496

    I have the 26 on a Lazer and have had absolutely 0 troubles with it. I thought it was great before, but it's even better for cold starting. No choke is kind of nice when it comes to that. The fuel consumption rate is really nice too. I've never drained both tanks in one day (and that includes LONG days) of cutting. And talk about a smooth runner, the throttle response is great, and the power is phenominal. If I was to purchase another Lazer tomorrow, that's what it would be.
  6. tlcgrounds

    tlcgrounds LawnSite Member
    Posts: 133

    thank you for the good review. I have one other q. I have a 25 kohler on a lazer I bought this year. I have not had any propblem. If the head gasket is such an epidemic has there been a recall I missed or have I been extremely lucky. This unit has 300 hours on it. Do the gaskets usually fail in a certain time period????
  7. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,555

    If your gaskets were bad,they usually blow in the first 50 hrs or so,mine went at 66 hrs.My engine hasnt been right since.
  8. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    The gaskets weren't the only problem. My first problem was a scored cylinder at 120 hours (warranty and 2 weeks down) I got rid of it with 2 1/2 years and only 650 hours or so on it.
    Kohler has all kinds of trouble with this and it is different for some mowers. The 25 has the coils down low, in the Walker that requires the motor to be pulled to change them. More shop time , more expense. Kohler had design problems with the coils too. Ya mine went bad too. The 26 has the coils mounted up top in the open. I can change them now. The head gasket blew (2 weeks down) the intake gasket blew (1 week down). And MY gasket blew.

    So apart from bad SAM's,head gaskets, intake gaskets, backfiring, bad coils, bad service, poor gas consumption, poor design, denial form Kohler that there is more than 1 problem with the motor and turfquip being mad at me for trashing the 25's - its a good motor!

    Sorry - Post traumatic stress disorder - kicked in. I'm better now.;)
  9. southside

    southside LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 790

    I heard that the actual power rating for the 26 efi was
    really closer to 29-30hp. It certainly feels very strong.
  10. turfquip

    turfquip LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 860


    I was never upset with your comments about the 25. I don't own Kohler stock and have no stake in the issue whatsoever.
    I learned a lot with that discussion. Personally, I hesitate to invest in machines with that engine. Honesty is the best policy. If someone asked me if the 25 was a good engine, I would tell them what I know, based on what I've learned from you guys.

    Thanks, Ed

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