John deer SX 95 runs but dies when put in gear

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by summej, Apr 29, 2008.

  1. summej

    summej LawnSite Member
    Messages: 16

    I just inherited a 12.5 Horse Kawasaki powered John Deer tractor that is about 10 years old. It has been sitting in a barn for a while. I cleaned the carb changed the oil and battery and got it running. The motor runs fine in neutral but as soon as I put a load on it whether it be putting the blades in gear, Putting it in FWD or Reverse- It instantly Dies.

    Anyone have any ideas?

    I can get the RPMS up pretty high before the choke kicks in and it sounds pretty strong until a load is put on the motor.

    FIXDISS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 445

    Check for a bad seat switch.If engine shuts down when either engaging pto or shifting to forward or reverse this is the first thing to check.Just my half-fast opinion.
  3. rockytopp

    rockytopp LawnSite Member
    Messages: 120

    Yup for sure, sounds like a safety switch to me also. Good luck.
  4. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,181

    Can you provide more detail regarding "I cleaned the carb"? Did you remove the bowl and wash out the small holes with carb cleaner? That's often the culprit causing the no-power description you provided. A clogged air filter can do it too, but you didn't mention if you changed it. Also, how are the plugs? I have a 23-year-old 17HP Bolens rider mower with a Kohler engine that was acting exactly like your JD. Just this last week I did all that I recommended to you, and now it runs like a new machine. I'm not kidding. It seems to have more power than my 23HP Kawasaki-powered Exmark ZTR.
  5. summej

    summej LawnSite Member
    Messages: 16

    I cleaned the carb a 2nd time after it would only run on choke. now it runs w/0 the choke engaged.

    I unscrewed both jets and blew them out with carb cleaner. cleaned the bowl. I did not take apart the float or float jet- I have had bad luck with removing the float pins in the past and the float seamed to be working fine. I still get slight up and down revs across the board when the RPM's are changed.

    I did not change the plug. I did clean the air filter but I guess I will replace both the filter and plug today. The engine seems to run near perfect until blades are engaged or FWD /Reverse is attempted.

    I noticed that the seat saftey switch has a 14 ga. piece of red wire jumpering it. I am not sure what is suppose to be in there instead but some one jumpered the seat switch.

    I do not want to put too much $ in this mower until I see if it is going to work for my purposes.
  6. summej

    summej LawnSite Member
    Messages: 16

    I just change the spark Plug and put a new air filter on it- Tractor does the same thing. Runs great in neutral then when you put it in ForWard. or Reverse or try to engage the blades it dies immediately.
  7. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,181

    You should be able to tell if the seat's safety switch had been bypassed by simply getting off the mower when the engine is running. If it doesn't die, the switch has been bypassed. Not a good idea, but it probably has nothing to do with the fact that the engine won't take a load and dies when you try to do that. How about the fuel filter? That's only a 3 or 4 dollar item in any auto-parts store. I use the NAPA ones. What kind of ignition does it have... points or electronic? If it has points and they are badly pitted, that may have screwed up the timing. Not too likely, I know, but at this point, I'm just grasping at straws.

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