Dead MTD?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by nikon4u, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. nikon4u

    nikon4u LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1

    I have an older MTD riding mower and am having trouble getting it to start. I turn the key and absolutely nothing happens :cry: . I have checked the battery, it's ok. I had to replace the fuse, it was bad. Still nothing.

    What can I do next, I don't want to have to take it in to the shop and pay a fortune for labor.

    thanks for any help.
  2. Brianslawn

    Brianslawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,004

    make sure the cables are clean especially were the battery grounds to the frame. this has been a big problen for us. if not that then starter solenoid. oriellys auto parts has those.
  3. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    You may want to make sure the fuse holder is not corroded first, Then perform a safety switch test.
    There is two safety switches that will keep the engine from cranking over.
    One is under the frame by the clutch pedal the other is under the shifter panel by the deck lift assembly. I would start with grabbing the deck lift handle with the key held in the start position and pull past the top notch if it starts the deck switch needs replacing. If it doesn't unplug each switch one at a time and jump across the plug with a short wire. This will bypass the switch and tell you which one is the culprit.
  4. fixer67

    fixer67 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,100

    Older MTD you say. Well Older MTD had the ground wire for the battery attracted to way back in back. The problem with this is there is about 5 sheet metal lap joints the current has to go though to get to the engine. Rust gets in these lap joints and there goes the ground. I have had to run a ground wire from the battery all the way to the engine to get a good ground on more that one machine. The starter mounting bolt is a good place to mount the ground wire. Also check the solenoid grounding. I once even seen a brand new MTD that came in for warranty work for not starting. When Bill turned the key switch you could see the arcing alone the frame where the sheet metal over lapped. It was paint and not rust that caused that problem. So check you ground path. If in doubt about it just get a set of car battery jumper cables and clip the black lead to the battery on one end and the engine block on the other end. And then set the brake and turn off the blades and try to start it. NOTE=The red lead of the car battery jumper cables is not used with this test. The cable is only meant to provide a good ground path and you say you replaced the fuse, well check it a again it could have blown a second time. you could have a short blowing fuses as fast as you turn the key.

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