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Air filter or something bigger?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by terceslil, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. terceslil

    terceslil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    I picked a 2005 Exmark 48" w/15hp Kawasaki that was on Craigslist. The transmission was replaced with a new transmission. The seller said it wasn't used for commercial use. I saw a brief demonstration that the mower runs, got it home and cut the back of my yard (about 1/2 an acre) and it seemed to run okay other than bogging down in thicker patches of the yard. I went to cut the front yard (about half an acre) and it seemed to just lose power. I raised the blade, dropped down to first gear, and still the mower struggles anytime the blade is engaged. It is also smoking from the muffler. I checked the oil and it was low so I added oil. I called and left a message to the Craigslist seller and told him that the mower just isn't running the same as when I saw it run at his house.

    The Craigslist ad reads:

    05 walk behind with 48" deck and velky new paint runs great just put and new tranny in it needs a $15 drive belt

    When I was at his house, I saw some smoke and he said that in the winter he puts a little diesel in the gas and that the smoke was the diesel burning off. He also said that it needs an air filter. Could an air filter cause problems like this?

    Bring it back or bring it to the shop????

    Is it possible that an air filter would cause this much trouble?
  2. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,510

    No. Get rid of it asap. Anyone who puts diesel in gas is an idiot. New trans, new paint, smoking and low on oil.... This mower is a p o s that has been beaten badly.
  3. terceslil

    terceslil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    I cleaned it up this morning. The pulleys under the were clogged with grass. The tires had no air. I imagine that the motor had to be struggling with pulling a mower around with flat tires and clogged full of grass. Neither of those account for the smoke. Considering the maintenance, the problem could be as simple as the plugs, fuel filter, and air filter. No?

    Looks like all the belts have plenty of wear.

    I left a message for the Craigslist seller and haven't received a call back. No big surprise, I guess.

    How much should I expect for a shop to go all through this thing and check it out, tune it up, and replace all the belts? :(
  4. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,510

    Too much. A simple tune up is very easy. Give it a shot!
  5. terceslil

    terceslil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    I cranked it an ran it for few minutes. Because the deck is now clean, I can see drops where the oil is being spit out. Doesn't look good for the home team.
  6. terceslil

    terceslil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    Looks like the diesel may have caused oil ring to collapse :(

    130 lbs compression though
  7. piston slapper

    piston slapper LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,335

    Diesel fuel wouldn't make the ring collapse, if anything, it would clean them up a little and make them work better.

    Sounds like the engine got water in it and the guy put diesel in it to free up a piston that had rusted (Froze) to the cylinder.
    Try replacing the sparkplugs , put 40W or 50W in the crankcase, and run it hard.
    It might free up ? Might blow up ?...
  8. terceslil

    terceslil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    Correction: the compression is 175 lbs per cylinder. I really don't want to blow this engine up. We're going to look at the rings today.
  9. terceslil

    terceslil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    FH451V-BS04 is a 17hp engine? I thought I had a 15hp engine. I was perusing different websites and keep turning up a 17hp engine with the numbers I wrote down from my engine.
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I can tell you this, diesel in the gasoline being good for the engine is an old wive's tale,
    in small amounts it will not hurt but it doesn't help, in large amounts it also won't hurt and it will not run,
    in either case diesel does absolutely nothing for your gasoline engine.

    Now, filling gasoline in a diesel :cry:
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2011

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