Gas vs Diesel / ZTR

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by PMLAWN, Apr 5, 2004.


    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,534

    I'm looking at a new ZTR this spring and with gas going up was wondering if anybody knows how much different the fuel useage is with a diesel vs gas and if it would offset the added cost. I know that the diesel will last longer but does that matter( will the motor outlast the rest of the unit)? Searching showed a lot about trucks but not a lot about ZTR's and mileage. Thanks .
  2. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    I just asked this question in the Exmark forum comparing a 28 efi to the 27 diesel.. You can see Terry's answer there.
  3. specialtylc

    specialtylc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,656

    My Kubota ZD21 uses 35% less fuel than the 25Hp Kohler that I have.
  4. Sam-Ohio

    Sam-Ohio LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 304

    Scag uses a 31 hp turbo charged Daihatsu diesel that is rated to burn 1.6 gals. per hour at full throttle.

    Scag also uses the 29 hp. Kawasaki digital fuel injected [water cooled gas] engine that burns the exact same 1.6 gals. per hour at full throttle.

    The best thing about this Kawasaki is there is no questions about its reliability. This engine has been virtually flawless ! Scag used it last year also, and has experienced NO problems.

    The 28 hp. Kohler EFI gas engine that some used last year was an absolute train wreck ! Kohler has been working to get their electrical problems fixed - and they claim that the engine should be much more reliable from now on - let us hope so ! Even if it is wired up better , I believe it still eats more fuel per hour than the Kaw does.

    A well cared for water cooled gas engine , or a well cared for diesel will probably outlast the mower unit anyway.

    The most grafic example of how long water cooled gas engines can last is all the old 9N Ford tractors that were made before and during WW-II [65 years ago], and the Cub Lo-Boy tractors that were made 50 to 60 years ago , that are still running and mowing grass. There are thousands of these old gasoline engines still being run all across the nation.

    I personally know of 3 Steiners in my area , that have Kubota water cooled gas engines that have over 5000 hours, and one with over 6000 hours on their original engines they were born with.

    With some fuel inj. gas engines becoming as fuel efficient as a diesel , it's getting really difficult to justify the added one or two thousand dollar cost of the diesel engine. How can you ever make it pay for itself ?

    The only advantage left to diesel is if the cost of the fuel [per gallon] is less than the cost of gas. This past year, I have seen it both more and less expensive than gasoline. Just depends on what games they are playing with the cost of fuel that week or month.
  5. rob1325

    rob1325 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 697

    With a diesel engine comes the added weight to a machine, which may and may not work for you. I would also recommend the 29 DFI Kawi liquid cooled. They state it uses 27% less fuel than air cooled & also out lasts air cooled motors.

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,534

    Thank you all for your answers. This is very helpful. I think I will start looking into gas with liquid cool a lot more. Thanks again.

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