Kawasaki engine - Spark Plug wire issue? Ignition Module?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by ztrguy, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. ztrguy

    ztrguy LawnSite Senior Member
    from NE FL
    Posts: 466

    The past few days I have had trouble with my 34hp Kawasaki engine. It begins to surge, revving up and down, and eventually dies. Well, I decided to check the plugs and when I did I noticed one plug wire was barely connected to the spark plug. So I assumed this was the problem. I connected the plug wire to the plug and it started and ran fine. Great! Maybe not... It ended up revving up and down so I messed with the plug wire again and it started back up. Ran great for 30 mins or so. Same thing happened, so I checked plug again and made sure it was making a good connection. It fired back up and ran 20 mins probably. Same thing, eventually died. Looked at the mower and noticed this time the plug wire was completely off. Every time before it may/may not have been a little loose. But this time it was completely off the plug. Ended up crimping it down so it would stay on better, but still have the same issue. Runs about 20 mins and starts doing it again. Any ideas? I'm thinking maybe it's the entire ignition module? Have you experienced any spark plug issues with your Kawasaki engine? Thanks for the help guys!
     
  2. JimQ

    JimQ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,139

    I just had a 34 Kawi in the shop last week.

    The engine would drop a cylinder under load. Start, run, rev just fine. Engage the PTO and it would drop a cylinder. I replaced the plug in the "dead" cylinder. Problem solved. I ended up replacing both plugs. You don't see it very often but a plug solved it.

    Q
     
  3. ztrguy

    ztrguy LawnSite Senior Member
    from NE FL
    Posts: 466

    Thanks for the reply. I changed plugs the first time it happened, but it didn't solve the problem. I really wish that it would have though.
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  4. BigFish

    BigFish LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,916

    Couple of things come to mind. Have you checked the fuel cap for proper venting? If its an emissions unit the tank still needs to vent, make sure the valve at the fill neck is working and hoses are not kinked and the charcoal filter is not plugged etc. Could also be the fuel solenoid acting up/ dirt around the pintle partly clogging up the fuel flow. Pull the hose off the fuel filter and check the flow, could be a partially clogged filter. I don't think its ign.
     
  5. ztrguy

    ztrguy LawnSite Senior Member
    from NE FL
    Posts: 466

    I have an update: Once it warms up it runs about 15 mins and starts acting up. Turn it off, mess with plug wire, crank it up and it runs another 15 mins. It kept doing that for a solid hour of mowing.
     
  6. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 16,256

    Why dont you buy th eplug wire, it may be expensive if its made into the coil but worth a try.
    Just a side note water in your fuel will give you the same symptoms.
     
  7. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,145

    When I change spark plug wires on an automobile, be it a car or a truck...
    I ALWAYS keep the old ones, for the parts such as the little steel clips that go on the end of the wire, and the boots.
    They're called terminals, some places call them ends.

    But I do believe you can order some online, they'll run you a dollar or two, each.
    You might need a good boot, too.

    Here's one such place:
    http://www.summitracing.com/parts/RNB-49807

    Remember, it's a lot cheaper to keep old spark plug wires.
     
  8. ztrguy

    ztrguy LawnSite Senior Member
    from NE FL
    Posts: 466

    That's what I'm going to do, buy the ignition module for that cylinder. Hopefully it will solve the problem.

    I've never had any issues with water in fuel, but it's very possible. I could maybe use some fuel additive?
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  9. dboyd351

    dboyd351 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,099

    That's what I'd try. Coils/Ignition modules are known to fail as they heat up before they go totally, so what you describe makes perfect sense if that coil is starting to go.
     
  10. ztrguy

    ztrguy LawnSite Senior Member
    from NE FL
    Posts: 466

    The part should be in this wknd. I'll update everyone nxt wk and hopefully we can resolve the issue.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     

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