Kohler starting problem.

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by jetdoc, Aug 19, 2006.

  1. jetdoc

    jetdoc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    I recently (1 week ago), bought a used 61" lawnmower, a 2001 Rich convertible, but it has only 75 hrs on it. It has a Kohler 25 hp command.

    Well to put it simply, the dang mower wont start now. I've started it several times after I bought it and cut with it for about 20 minutes the other day. I then put it in my garage to do some lubrication and just to check it over closely.

    Well I got the above done and started it for a few minutes and it ran fine yesterday, now today I tried to start it to actually cut with it and now it won't run.

    It did start for a few seconds, then cut out. I had the choke and throttle set correctly.

    I take off the air cleaner cover and see the filter has no prefilter, no biggy, but it is supposed to have one.
    Im thinking no fuel is going in, so I pour some gas in and it will run for a few seconds then cut out. If I move the throttle handle back and forth I do not see fuel streaming into the carb, but Im not sure if on this carb you can.

    The salesman told me it had sat in the previous owners barn for over a year, and then it sat on the lot for about 2 months. I didn't think to ask if the fuel is fresh or from over a year ago. The farming equipment place is closed now and tomorrow is Sunday, so they will be closed then too, so I can't find out from the salesman about the fuel till then.

    So I wonder if the thing needs a tune up? The fuel doesn't smell bad but I mean if its that old it could be varnished? So Im wondering about changing the spark plug, fuel filter, air filter and fresh fuel? There is gas in the tank, about 1/4 to 1/3 full I'd say. Again, if I pour fresh fuel in the carb it will run for a few seconds, the cut out.

    The spark plug looks ok, a bit wet from all the starting, but its not fouled. I'd say if it runs for a few seconds after I pour gas in the carb then either the fuel in the tank is bad or no fuel is getting to the carb?

    thanks in advance.
  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Sounds like you need to check the carb. It may be gummed up from sitting.
    On the bottom of the carb. is a fuel cut-off solenoid, Hold your finger on this and turn the key on and off and see if you feel it clicking while switching. If not un-plug it and screw it out of the carb. and clean with carb. & choke spray cleaner, Also clean the main jet and float bowl and spray up the center of the carb. where the solenoid screws in and see it that doesn't do it. You may also want to check and make sure you have battery voltage to the solenoid with the key in the run position.

    Twin CV Carb. Break-down.jpg
  3. jetdoc

    jetdoc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    Thanks Rob for the diagram, I really appreciate it.

    I did go out and was able to get my finger on the solenoid and I can feel and hear it click. I don't know how familiar you are with a Convertible but they sure don't make it easy access to the engine, jeez. The carb is going to be fun to get full access to but I can do it Im sure. I almost looks like I have to remove the fuel tank to really get access to the carb. Good design guys at Rich.

    If I feel the solenoid click and hear it as well then voltage should be good to it? Would you suggest cleaning that still?

    I will do as you suggested tomorrow and let you know what I come up with, I think I should disgard the fuel as well, ehh? Can't hurt none for sure.
  4. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    If you hear the solenoid click yes the voltage is fine, The click is the plunger being pulled into the solenoid so it sounds like it is not gummed up and working properly. I'm not familiar with this brand unit so since the carb. is in a hard to get to position you may check the fuel pump first, Remove the hose going to the carb. and put a piece of hose on the pump and hold it over a container then crank the engine over and watch that it is pumping.

    If so go ahead with the carb. cleaning. Also flush the tank and replace the fuel filter, And you may even think about replacing the fuel hoses if there is any sign of cracking or stiffness while your at it. Also after all cleaning and reassembly before you hook the carb. hose back to the fuel pump again hold the hose over the container and crank the engine over to flush the hoses and fuel pump with fresh fuel.

    From the description you gave it sounds like lack of fuel so these things should be checked to locate the problem, Solenoid appears fine, Fuel pump, Float and needle valve sticking or plugged main jet.

    Good Luck
  5. jetdoc

    jetdoc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    Thank you sir, that sounds logical Rob.

    On this unit, as you may know, then engine is under the seat. The seat flips over, no problem, however its the carb in the rear that has some access difficulty. Taking the tank off will help a lot. It looks like I can remove the straps and keep the lines on to do some checking.

    The fuel pump is right there, so thats not a problem...its a heavy duty one, unlike the one on my cubby, which was plastic. I suppose the pump can just crap out all of a sudden?

    I will get on it this a.m and let you know what I come up with, thanks for your help.
  6. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    That thing sounds like my unit in my avatar, I have a starter drive been hanging up for a year and a half now. To fix it yeah....The whole body must be removed and the engine removed out of the frame. Needless to say as long as I can stick my long screw driver through the back end and un-stick it thats the way I run it. A Tech's equipment is the last to be worked on. :hammerhead:
  7. MLawns

    MLawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 68

    Pull the lines on your filter first and see if you get fuel. Filters have been known to dry up or be full of crap and engine will run till the filter empties out. Might save you some work. But a lilte maintenance won't hurt. A dirty or dried out filter is not out of the question.......that's where I'd start if it runs momentarily and quits.
  8. jetdoc

    jetdoc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    Man am I a big dummy....I was getting ready to take off the fuel tank and got to looking under the tank itself and saw a shutoff valve, drain **** deal.

    It was slightly turned, to the off position. So that was the problem.

    Man do I feel stupid, but I have never seen anything like that before, oh well, live and learn.

    Sorry to drag you guys into this...I appreciate your input however....jeez.
  9. MLawns

    MLawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 68

    At least you saved yourself some time and money. That was a quick fix!:laugh: :clapping:
  10. Splicer

    Splicer LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 992

    It happens to the best of us at times...Glad you got it resolved...

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