1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Not to worry. Check out the archived thread of the Q&A with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, and the LawnSite community in the Franchising forum .

    Dismiss Notice

Craftsman Lawntractor won't start

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by limabean, Jul 29, 2005.

  1. limabean

    limabean LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    OK, a mechanical genius I am not..that is why I am here. I have an old Craftswman 18hp riding mower (917.254860) that my son was using the other day that "just quit". I am fairly certain it is an electric issue and wandered if I might ask a few troubleshooting tips?

    There is absolutely no sound or response when turning the key on. :sleeping:

    Battery is fully charged and cables cleaned/tightened.
    I replaced the key/switch assembly. :angry:
    I bypassed the switch under the seat thinking maybe that was it. :realmad:
    0 volts on the starter lead when key is turned on. :cry:

    Does anyone have any suggestions or possibly could give me pointers on where to take voltages for troubleshooting?

    The Limabean. :help:
  2. shop22

    shop22 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 134

    check your fuse. There should be a fuse on the hot lead to the key switch. If the fuse blows, you won't get any response from the switch
  3. limabean

    limabean LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    Thanks for the quick reply...I put the fuse on the voltmeter and it is ok as well.

    Anything else?
  4. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    You also have a safety switch on the clutch pedal and the blade engagement also, jump these one at a time and you may find the bad one.
  5. limabean

    limabean LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    I pulled the battery assembly out and have a question:

    I followed the positive battery lead down under the battery where it connects into what I guess is the clutch/switch assembly. Can I connect the positive lead from the battery directly to the "output" side of that...to the starter lead? Or does the clutch-a-ma-jig do somthing to the voltage that must be used?

    Once again, I am not very mechanically/electrically inclined or knowledeable.....but I ain't SKEEEEERED to try a few things.

    The Fordhook Limabean.
  6. limabean

    limabean LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    BTW - I did bypass the switch below the battery, for the clutch?
  7. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    The thing the pos. battery cable is hooked to is called a starter solenoid and it must be used, Although there is a way to bypass it we don't want to go there in your case. First of all on this solenoid you have the battery cable on one large post and the starter cable on the other large post, Then there is a smaller wire plugged on the side. Unplug this smaller wire and run a jumper wire to this spade post on the side,The solenoid should click and start turning the engine over. If not this solenoid is bad and needs replacing. If it turns the engine over take your test light or volt meter and check for voltage on the wire you unplugged while pushing the clutch and turning the key to start position. If no voltage, Go back to the ign. switch and check for voltage on the red wire marked on the switch as B or BATT, if you have voltage there check the wire on the switch marked S for start while pushing the clutch and turning the key to the start position.
    Post back your findings and we will go to the next step.
  8. limabean

    limabean LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    restrorob - I'll give it a try tonight, have been buried! I really do appreicate your guidance on this issue. :waving:

    I'll post my results later tonight.

    Thanks again.
  9. Fubba

    Fubba LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 356

    I agree. I have an old Scotts which is made by John Deere on which the starter solenoid went bad. It would click and click, but would never start. I replaced it, and it started right up.
  10. limabean

    limabean LawnSite Member
    Posts: 6

    retrorob/fubba - I tried what you had suggested and it was as quiet as a church mouse....so I am ordering the starter solenoid.

    I'll let you know and thanks again!
    The LimaBean.....

Share This Page