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Hydro keeps locking up?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by SDlawndawg, Dec 16, 2002.

  1. SDlawndawg

    SDlawndawg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    I have a Grasshopper midmount with a hydro motor that temporarily binds up. Say I'm backing up. I then stop and attempt to move forward. The right side motor works fine but the left lever will not budge. I cannot move the left lever forward. It will move after it sits for about 5-8 seconds. I can then gradually push the lever forward incrementally. After that, it works just fine. And it only does this about a third of the time. I've checked for debris around the linkage but have found nothing. Filter and fluid have been changed about 3 months ago. I'd take it to my dealer but it's out of warranty. Anyone have any ideas?
     
  2. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,465

    It sounds like you have a hydro pump problem. you unit i believe has an eaton ball piston pump and motor transaxle assembly. the pump is where your levers connect to on the top with the motor and planetarys on the bottom. sounds like your varrable plate is cracked or your plate is binding. either way it needs to come out and the pump plate and ball pistons checked out. you can call grasshopper and talk to the tech department and they will walk you through it. call them first before tearing it apart. good luck.
     
  3. SDlawndawg

    SDlawndawg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Thanks Khouse. I'll call and see if they'll help. I've never worked on the hydro part of a mower but there has to be a first time for everything.

    The pumps are separate from the wheel motor on midmounts. The pumps are mounted behind the engine and hardlines connect them to the wheel motors. As long as I don't need a shop full of specialized tools, I think I can do this. I hate to take it to my dealer (who I can't stand) and pay big bucks for labor. The worst that can happen is I end up taking it in if I get in over my head. I'd like to have a service manual for this machine but not sure where to get one.
     
  4. Doc Pete

    Doc Pete LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,469

    FWIW,
    If you have a real problem, look in the yellow pages for a hydro pump repair shop. These guys are familiar with working on these motors and pumps every day, a mower dealer is not. They'll have you back in business in no time.
    Pete
     
  5. SDlawndawg

    SDlawndawg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    You're right switchless. My dealer (like most) prefers to replace than to fix. I'm reluctant to take it to them because they will junk the wheel motor and charge me for a new one when it probably could be repaired. I hope.
     
  6. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,465

    I wouls assume it's an Eaton or Hydro-gear pump. Both have good tech working to help you. they also may have a rebuilt exchange program for you. if it's a hydro-gear pump there is still a wobble plate that may be the problem. tear it down and go for it.
     
  7. SDlawndawg

    SDlawndawg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    As soon as I know I can't fall clean for the rest of the year, I'm gonna tear into it. I still have fall cleans left. Mother Nature can't make up her mind.
     
  8. Doc Pete

    Doc Pete LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,469

    It may take a bit of time, but if you find the correct pump/motor numbers, the makers should be nice enough to fax/email the parts breakdown and possibly a "standard" rebuild kit.
    Pete
     
  9. captdevo

    captdevo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 932

    if it's in bad shape, and you need to replace, drop me a line with model and spec#'s and i can give you a great deal on a new one!!
     
  10. SDlawndawg

    SDlawndawg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    I called grasshopper and the tech guy said to make sure the linkage wasn't slipping on the shaft. To check this, I have to take off my peco vacuum framework and another access plate. He said if that wasn't the problem then it could be the swash plate inside the pump. Apparently the cradle bushings wedge against the swash plate and jam it. Khouse-is this the "wobble plate" you were referring to?

    I need a parts breakdown of this pump but don't feel like purchasing an entire service manual for the mower which is probably a little pricey. The pump is referred to in my operators manual as a g1 or gemini 1 pump with ross wheel motors. As soon as the paint dries on my mower deck, I'm gonna take a look at it. I hate the smell of spraypaint!
     

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