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Hydraulic pump or wheel motor

G. Ramey

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
clarkesville, ga
The last couple of months of last season my hustler mini z started having drive issues on the l. side. When the mower was cold and I started moving forward it would stutter and surge on the l. side. If you pushed the control sticks forward the mower will not go straight. The l. side drive wheel surges, by that I mean several times per revolution of the wheel it loses power for a fraction of a second before starting to rotate again. After the mower gets warm the stuttering stops but the l. wheel is not as strong as the right. If you are moving across flat ground with both sticks pushed forward the same amount the mower would gradually turn l. if I didn,t correct it. If I jack the rear up and turn the rear tires by hand the r. one is smooth but the l. one although no harder to turn has a stutter to it while turning. There is no warranty on the mower and I can,t afford to let a dealer chase ghost. Do you guys think it would most likly be the wheel motor or the hydraulic pump. Is there a procedure for ruling one or the other out. Thanks
 

ricky86

LawnSite Silver Member
Your dealer shouldn't be chasing ghosts. Some are actually professionals with a whole lot of knowledge and tools at their disposal. Judging from your description (and only YOUR description) it sound like a wheel motor (but could very well be the pump) They will give you a ratcheting feel when they are dry. The pump should be flow tested. Is there any debris in your oil tank?
 

P.Services

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Fenton Michigan
I have had two mowers do the same thing and they were both pumps. Check to make sure the belt is tight and there is no oil dripping onto the belt from a engine problem (sounds crazy but I had it happen)
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OP
G. Ramey

G. Ramey

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
clarkesville, ga
The filter in the tank doesn,t have any debris in it and the oil is clean. I just happened to run into a mechanic, who works at a local tractor dealer. He said it sounded like I was describing a wheel motor problem. He recommends putting a pressure guage on the pump.
 

P.Services

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Fenton Michigan
the filter in t he tank????

you need to cut your spin on filter open and inspect that and then drain your tank totally and see what comes out. i bet a bunch of gold and silver flakes.
 
OP
G. Ramey

G. Ramey

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
clarkesville, ga
P. Services I just removed the filter, what is the best way to cut it open? thanks.I was talking about the strainer in the top of the tank. Sorry I was having a brain fart.
 

P.Services

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Fenton Michigan
Yeah that strainer isn't gona show u anything. Just use a hack saw but understand that you will make some metal shavings doing that. Take it apart and look at the paper filter parts. Can you pull the hydro resivoir? Drain that thing out all the way and see what comes out.
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G. Ramey

G. Ramey

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
clarkesville, ga
I,ll cut the filter and pull the reservoir on monday. thanks. What do you know about rebuilding a wheel motor if thats the problem.
 

P.Services

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Fenton Michigan
I never have done one and I'm not sure I would try. I would take it to a hydro shop. Ahh I take it back maybe I would try but I havnt had the chance to. When you do put things back together make sure you go crazy cleaning lines, the other motor and pumps. Wash them out over and over and over with mineral spirits. And then change the filter. I always ran it for a few minutes then changed the filter again and then ran it for a few hours and changed it again.
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ricky86

LawnSite Silver Member
Get an extendable magnet and run it around the bottom of the tank. And you don't "pressure test" the pump. Pressure is a result of load. You want to check the ability of the pump to maintain the correct amount of flow while under varying pressure. So, it has to be flow tested. Rarely are wheel motors cost effective to repair. If you had a wheel motor failure, it most likely took out the pump. If the pump failed, you can sometimes get away with cleaning it (the motor that is)
 
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