1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Catch up on the conversation about fertilization strategies for success with the experts at Koch Turf & Ornamental in the Fertilizer Application forum.

    Dismiss Notice

Start Problem

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by burlap, Jul 5, 2006.

  1. burlap

    burlap LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 66

    I have a Kohler CH 25 in a Snapper Series 0 ZTR. It starts sporadically. Today it won't start. When I turn the key I just get a click from the starter. The battery reads 11.4 volts between terminals. From the + terminal to the key start terminal on the solenoid I get 11.2 volts sitting and 5.4 volts when I try to crank it. From the + terminal to starter terminal on the solenoid I get 10.6 sitting and 5.4 when I turn the key. A remote starter between the battery/solenoid terminal and the starter/solenoid terminal causes it to turn over( apparently the flywheel is engaged). Jumping from the battery terminal to the starter terminal just causes it to spin but not engage. I did several searches but have not found anything that seems to pertain to my problem other than the series on adding a supplemental solenoid. Does my information give anybody an idea as to what my problem could be? I think the starter is less than a year old. I tried that route last summer to solve the slow start that didn't help and now it's even harder to start. Thanks for your help and patience. burlap

    FIXDISS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 445

    Sounds like you have a bad battery if you have only 11.2 volts from battery posts.Clean all connections and put a fresh battery in then check voltage after you start it.You shoulld get at least 13.2 volts at high idle .
  3. Jim@MilkyWay

    Jim@MilkyWay LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 472

    ok guys 'n gals
    Don't flame me here, you hear.
    I'm no expert, as I have not been doing this electrical stuff for long; only since I could walk. I did _not_, repeat, not attempt anything of the sort prior to that time. But you can test your starting system with a car battery.
    NOW... before someone goes out there and causes a nuclear explosion, please finish reading my post and if it does not make sense to you, _please_, simply ignore. Here's how it works.
    Batteries have different capacities. That term, used in _this_ context, means 'the ability to do work'.
    If you string eight 1.5Vdc flashlight batteries together, in series, you have a 12V battery/power supply (8X1.5V=12V).
    However, you still do not have a great deal of capacity to do work. As soon as you put a "load" across your miniature 12V power supply, it goes into current limit operation mode, and... well never mind.
    On the other hand, when you consider that a standard car battery will supply up to, like, 750 cranking amps at 12V, then you have a very, repeat VERY FORMIDABLE power source.
    If you don't believe it, accidentally short a hot car battery out with a wrench and you will believe it!
    But still, 12V is 12V. Your machine under test will draw no more current than it 'needs' to operate with 12V still across the battery. Just because you have a lot more battery 'capacity', doesn't mean you are going to unleash all of it! So..., PROVIDED you do not have any short circuits from the wiring having been monkeyed with, or a component in any circuit being shorted to ground, for whatever reason and all is fine in all circuits, which should be the case for a healthy machine that has not been tinkered with, then you should,... no, Will be ok. I run my Dr Brush mower, with a 14.5 Kaw on a car battery; have for years. Even when my battery is 'low' I can't tell, because it has a _lot_ of reserve power.
    IF however, you have a short circuit or a high-resistance contact caused by a dirty connection, then you have a lot more power to burn something up.
    Further, jumping a machine using jumper cables is not the same as removing the suspect battery from the circuit and putting a known good battery in series, which is how batteries are connected in/on your starting system, in the machine under test. Don't trust jump starting to tell all.
    ok, I'm thick skinned, so fire away.
  4. lawnwizards

    lawnwizards LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,439

    and to add to Jim@MilkyWay's post, please don't put a wrench accross anything with 750 amps.. It more then likely will be the last time you do it.
  5. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Thats a good post on battery voltage Jim, Now explain battery amperage. :waving:
  6. Jim@MilkyWay

    Jim@MilkyWay LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 472

    Sure; do you have a specific question or are you trying to enlighten others viewing who have no experience?:rolleyes: :drinkup:
    I do tend to skip a few steps/facts as I get _far_ to wordy as is.
  7. Jim@MilkyWay

    Jim@MilkyWay LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 472

    Thank you. You are absolutely right.
    People do not realize it, but a car battery is the most potentially dangerous and innocuous "little" item that we all use every day, and take for granted, also every day.
    If you short one out, with a "fuse" as sturdy as a combination wrench and it is a healthy, fully charged battery, it _WILL_ explode. Maybe not nuclear, but _trust_ me, you do not want to test my warning!!!
  8. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    No question, Just thought it would help burlap understand why his voltage dropped to 5.4 volts when he turned the key to the start position.
  9. Jim@MilkyWay

    Jim@MilkyWay LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 472

    You will notice there are a lot of threads I don't touch because I don't have a good enough picture of what is going on, to comment.
    This is a good example. I don't know what might be dropping voltage between the battery and test leads. I can absolutely say that, regardless of any other voltage tests , If the voltage, _under load_ at the battery posts, NOT on the cable ends, drops below 10Vdc, much less 5+V, then the battery condition is the first thing to question. Just because it is a 12V system, you won't have 12V automatically every where you check, as different components in all the individual circuits use different voltages and provide different functions. I am not trying to evade the question, but it is not a straight forward answer.

Share This Page