the troublesome Kohler 25hp

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by creekside, Aug 3, 2001.

  1. creekside

    creekside LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    I am looking at a 2000 model ZTR that is brand new and has a Kohler Command CH25 on it. With it being a 2000 model I would think that it could have been built as early as mid to late 1999.

    How can I determine if this is the same engine that has problems? Is there a defintive time frame in which they were manufactured? Is it all Kohler 25HPs made until they started using the Command PRO name?

    Would appreciate any information you have to share!
  2. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    Some had problems with them and some didn't. I talked to someone that went to the Kohler booth and he was told when Kohler had lots of problems, they paid for about 400 head gaskets a week, but now they are averaging one a week. It sounds like now they have it fixed.

    The 2000 could of been built in 99 also. Most mower Mfg start building the next year models in June or July. One good thing about this is, they do give you a 2 year warranty and the head gaskets usually let go before 100 hours. The replacement usually holds, but not always.

    Back when this model your looking at was built, this engine had more problems than now, but it could end up being a good engine too.

    I hope this helps. :)
  3. creekside

    creekside LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    Yes, your feedback sure does help. Every bit of information is helpful to me.
    Thanks Eric !
  4. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,698

    The Command Pro is the same engine as the Command except for:

    larger-capacity oil and fuel filters
    high-performance spark plugs
    large-capacity dual-element air cleaner for extended maintenance intervals
  5. jannan

    jannan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

    Before buying a used Lazer with the 25 hp Kolher, I emailed Exmark and requested the serial # range of the problem engines. They were very helpful, the serial # on it was not one of the problem ones, I bought the mower and have had no engine problems so far.
  6. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,555

    Dont always believe the serial# will tell you if you will have trouble.My 25 is the updated one,the one with the newest head gaskets,and all,my dealer assured me it was alll fixed for the 2000 model year,built in late 99.I blew the head gaskets at 66 hrs,it burns oil,low power,and the lifters tick something aweful intermittently.Kohler fixed the head gaskets,but the other things are normal,if you buy a 25-buy it knowing,it might tick a lot,and there is nothing you can do about it,if you cant live with it -dont buy it,same for the oil comsumption,It bothers me that I have to add oil at 25 hrs,when my other equipment has 1000's of hours and dont use any.It also bothers me that I paid for a 25hp engine,and could've saved 300 bucks,and got a better,more powerful,efficient,and quieter engine just by downgrading to the 23 Kawasaki.When my kohler blows,or I find some fool to buy it,I will repower with Honda,or kawasaki.
  7. williamslawn

    williamslawn LawnSite Member
    from SC
    Messages: 202

    We had to replace the head gasket on one of our mowers with the Kohler 25 hp. Now the rocker arm has come loose twice. Has anyone else had this problem after having the repairs done? If so how did they correct the problem? We have checked the arm and the push rod and no problem found.
  8. chipk1

    chipk1 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 398

    My 2004 Kohler 25 Blew head gasket and reed valve at 80 hours. Dealer warrantied and said it was a common defect they milled the heads and replaced reed and gaskets. Told me I shouldn't have anymore problems. Will at 500 hours today Poof. Smoking again. Another blown head gasket and 4 month out of warranty! Dealer said kohler refuses to admit the head gasket problems with 25hp's but that he gets many blow right side gaskets in. He said kohler will give you a gasket kit and new bolts but will not cover labor. Beware of the Kohler 25hp engines. They are JUNK!
  9. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,465

    I had a Command 25 and the lifters ticked like crazy. Kohler told me that it was normal. I said with only 50 hours on it - it is not normal. After convincing them that I knew what I was talking about. Kohler paid for a new Command Pro to be installed on my mower. That has been about 6 years ago and it's still running like new.
  10. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,951

    BTW, this thread was started 5 1/2 years ago -- maybe some of the early questions and information is no longer relevant. Or, maybe nothing has changed.

    I was startled to see EricElm's response - a great source of information in year's past.

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