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KOHLER - Time For Damage Control?


LawnSite Senior Member

It's in their best interest to intervene while their reputation and committment to excellence is still perceived as 'strong'

I've noticed what appears to be a trend in the secondary market as resale prices are dropping due to more and more Z's with 25's hitting the market.

I don't know what can be done...I'm not on the front lines and so far, they haven't commissioned me to step in to evaluate...troubleshoot the production process. But threads continually banging on their product is bound to start pissing off dealers (and users).


LawnSite Senior Member
southern ohio
It would be nice to get some of the manufacturer reps to particpate on this forum. I have told several dealers as well as a Great Dane distributor about this forum in hopes that they would tune in.


LawnSite Bronze Member
I think they're better than they used to be.

As far as having a 'strong' reputation, I think that dissolved 15 years ago when the Japanese engines started hitting the market.

What made Z's affordable (compared to Groundmasters and other out-front mowers) was that they had a lightweight air-cooled "disposable" (2000hr.) engine.

With Z's solidly having commandeered the commerical market from "front-mounts", you'll see the quality, more expensive LC engines make their way onto the Z's.



Moderator, Friend, Angel
South East
I have a 23hp command. been great so far. But from the honest post i have read on here. I would never buy a 25. The next lazer I buy will be a kawasaki 26 or the new deisel. I don't know about buying a gas liquid cooled though. Seem to me that alot could go wrong with that and over heating here down south would be a problem.


LawnSite Senior Member
From what I have seen and heard,briggs did the same to
John Deere,JD back in the eighties used briggs until they had a lot of problems,They asked briggs to straighten out there engines and from what i was told briggs told them if they did not like there engines buy someone elses engine,thats when JD went to kawasaki,I see that they use kohlers for there bottom line of tractors,so I believe eq.manufactures will end up putting kawasaki or diesels on
there machines,I can,t believe kohler has come out with fuel injected engines and they can,t even keep there basic engines together,This is my 2 cents
Kohler engines are crap. The customer service sucks. They spend all there time denying warranty claims and blaming it on us. We have had three Kohler engine failures this year. All engines with less than 250 hours, and one with 75 hours and hell, one they replaced didn't even make it out of the damn shop before it knocked. We have spent over $ 1,000 just to get the mid mow's back in service while the Kohler junk metal piles up in our shop.

But Kohler reps, (EC Distributing) in Portland, just tell us it's all us. We have called several different Kohler dealers and they all give the same canned story. "Oh, you used the wrong weight oil and thats why it grenaded." What about your asembly lube your freaking morons ?? They tell my ASE certified mechanic he dosn't know what hes doing. I am e mailing corporate Kohler, going to run the next one till it blows, then I am going to sue their ass off in small claims court in my county.


LawnSite Senior Member
baltimore, md
funny funny..........I was just at my dealer today after purchasing a GD chariot the other day witht the 25 kohler. One of the mechanics today told me EVERY motor that has gone out since hes been there (3 months ) has had to have the head gaskets replaced. He explained it happens so often that he keeps quite a few in stock hehe. Supposedly he said when the head bolts heat up they stretch which creates the blown head gasket, so the new kit just includes the new bolts and same old head gasket and he said not 1 has been back =since. He added that he tends to mill the heaed just a wee bit for some more juice on the turh haha. just thought i'd share that.... CYA


LawnSite Silver Member
you guys are scaring the sh** out of me with all these kohlors from hell storys! I unfortunally bought my z master with a kohlor 25 last november about a week before i descuverd lawnsite. I would have only known then what i know now about kohlors no way would i have gotten a kohlor on it.... come to think of it, i think that is all toro z master offers on there full size ztrs. Ive had good luck with this engine (knock on wood!) so far... im praying my luck continues!


LawnSite Gold Member
turfequip.com wrote:
"But threads continually banging on their product is bound to start pissing off dealers (and users)."

so ed, or A-1, or whoever, what do you mean by that comment?

are you issuing a warning to posters here?

don't worry, your response to me won't matter. in my small operation I have to depend on my machine. I run a kawsaki with very few problems to report.



Moderator, Friend, Angel
South East
ED, it doesn't matter what kohler says in it defense. We are the ones test driving the equipment under working conditions. The bottom line is how it works in the field every day. It doesn't seem like these contractors are making this stuff up. Kkohler should listen and learn and fix the problems