Beware Scag Cheetah 31HP Kawasaki, 2nd time in shop.

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Ijustwantausername, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. Ijustwantausername

    Ijustwantausername LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,728

    First let me point out that the dealer I used was great. No problem with them, Kawasaki however, that's another story.

    We'll guys to keep this short, you can refer back to my earlier posts regarding this cheetah and it's issues. I put it in the shop the first time because it was using oil, had things here and there adjusted, and a few other routine things done to it to try and find the oil consumption culprit. Unfortunately the adjustments didn't fix the consumption, it still showed oil consumption over the next 20 hours of use. Anyhow, as usual I was checking the oil level one day after about 20-25 hours since the last fresh oil/filter was installed and it was down to HALF LEVEL. I couldn't believe it. So back to the shop for a second time. We'll I just got the mower back this week and the oil consumption tests are coming back indicating that its using a normal amount of oil for that type of engine, which is about a quart a week or 1.5 oz average/hour, if I remember right. Had I known this I wouldn't have bought a Cheetah, period, heck my last mower didn't start using oil until 1300 hrs. At any rate, if you agree with Kawasaki then maybe this type of engine is for you, but if that's a little too much oil consumption, then I agree.

    Oh and don't be fooled by "warranty this" and "warranty that" for X amount of years. Its hogwash. Seems to me like when Kawasaki gets a claim they turn it into a normal issue for a certain engine and write it off as something that just happens to that particular engine, kind of like oil consumption. Do a search and ask around, I'm not the only one with this problem with this engine.

    Anyhow, this is mainly for you all considering what to buy for this season. Just keep in mind that you might be spending some extra money on oil/gas if you go the kawasaki route.

    Have a nice day.
  2. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,828

    My last new Kohler was worse than that by quite a bit 2 years ago. No problem with the Kawi that replaced it, at least not yet. I've heard far more about this with Kohlers on here than Kawi's. Found a lot more threads about it for Kohlers than Kawi's too, back when I searched. IIRC, Kohler says up to 1.5 - 2 oz per hour is acceptable oil usaage. They finally replaced my entire engine and I traded it in on this one. No regrets either.
  3. djagusch

    djagusch LawnSite Platinum Member
    from MN
    Messages: 4,358

    A/C will use oil.
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  4. ddixon7

    ddixon7 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    I have had better luck with Kohler. I have had 6 Kohlers and 10 Kawasakis over the years. I had one 23hp Kohler go 4900 hours. Most of my Kaws have been awesome until this last year. Had a 23 Kaw go out with only 1400 hrs. Unacceptable in my opinion with the great maintenance they receive. Also, I have a 24 Kawasaki that has backfired since day one every time I take it from full throttle to idle. Every time. It now has 1300 hours on it. While it was under warranty they wouldn't do a thing about it. Kawasaki warranties suck. I think it has to do with a little luck and what exact model motor you buy as to what is the most reliable.

    2 of my 3 newer Kawasakis burn oil too! Since they were brand new... I think all these engines are getting worse and worse just like everything else in this world. Hard to find pure quality like you used to in anything.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
  5. cdqat1432

    cdqat1432 LawnSite Member
    Male, from Youngstown, Ohio
    Messages: 138

    "It is normal for Kohler engines to burn up to 2 oz oil per cylinder per hour". Came straight from the Kohler rep and the dealer who sold it to me. My response to that was "I am glad Ford doesn't say that. I would burn several gallons per week!
    Maintenance is simplified. You would never have to change the oil, just the filter.:)
  6. LandFakers

    LandFakers LawnSite Fanatic
    from CT
    Messages: 6,309

    My 10 year old exmark still doesn't consume oil... Don't think a brand new mower should be
  7. Jimslawncareservice

    Jimslawncareservice LawnSite Platinum Member
    from mn
    Messages: 4,143

    I had similar problem with my deere 950. It stopped using after 150 or so hours. I have 300 on it now. It even had more power and cuts better. Deere told and shown me kawis specs. It's 1-1.5 oz of run time.

    I talked to Scag/pace rep at green EXPO about a new cheetah. He didn't say anything bad about the kawi 31 he steered me a different size and make engine saying it would be better if I would run a bagger or mulch kit.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  8. MOturkey

    MOturkey LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,782

    Until my most recent purchase, I've run Kawasaki's. All but my first (a 23 horse, 2002 model) have used a little oil. I use 10-40 synthetic normally, but used straight 30 dino on my last mower the first 100 hours. It still used some oil. I never actually tried to measure the consumption, but I never bothered with adding oil until it got below the halfway point in the "safe" area on the dipstick, and that generally was at around 50 hours or so. I can't believe these figures of an ounce an hour or more. That would mean in at 100 hour oil change intervals, one would have to add 3 quarts of oil, more than the amount it takes to fill the sump in the first place.

    Guessing, I'd say mine might consume 8 - 10 ounces in 100 hours.
  9. ztman

    ztman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,115

    Have the 31 kawi, in 200 hours never used oil that I noticed. I change the oil and filter every 40-50 hours
  10. Landrus2

    Landrus2 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,050

    How many hours on machine .

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