Craftsman Kohler Fuel Filter Problem: Solved

lanckibMarch 20, 2009

I'm posting this as an informational message for those who have problems with fuel flow in Craftsman lawn tractors with Kohler engines (possibly this affects others as well), specifically after changing the fuel filter. My model is a 917.272481 Craftsman LTX1000 with a Kohler Pro 18HP engine (Model:CV492S Spec:27506) bought in 2002. Note that this engine does not use a fuel pump and relies on the gas tank being higher than the carburetor so that gravity carries the gas to it.

In 2004 I bought a replacement fuel filter for this tractor based on the model number listed in my manual, 25-050-03 which today maps to new Kohler part number 25-050-22. This filter was an aftermarket that mapped to this same part number and was clear rather than a white opaque plastic. After doing this I had the problem that many in this forum have posted about where the filter appeared to run out of gas and the engine would stall after about 20-30 minutes. If left to set, the fuel would eventually fill back up. The original filter could be put back and this problem went away which pointed to the new fuel filter as being the problem.

I ended up using the old filter since they really don't see much action on a lawn tractor, but this season I decided to find a proper replacement. After some research in the Kohler manuals and having a part shop look up the filter type based on engine model number vs. the part listed in my manual I discovered that Craftsman made a typo in their documentation. The part number 25-050-22 (or 25-050-03) is a 50 micron filter designed for a fuel pump where they also make a 25-050-21 (or 25-050-07) which is a 75 micron filter designed for a gravity feed system like my engine is.

Kohler isn't particular to brand of filter as some would suggest in these forums but rather it is particular to the micron size (and thus flow rate) of the filter media based on whether you have a fuel pump providing extra pressure or just have lower pressure gravity carrying the fuel directly to the carburetor.

So if you can trace your fuel hose as going straight from the gas tank and into the carburetor float bowl, use the filter 25-050-21 with the bigger 75 micron holes and if you have a fuel pump in between, then use the 25-050-22 with the 50 micron holes to keep your gas cleaner. Using a different brand should make no difference on a Kohler as long as you can determine which micron size it has (these branded maintenance parts are just sourced from some other company for cheap and then marked up). I would avoid anything that says universal without specification though since you have no idea what they decided is a universal micron size.

Cleaning the carb never hurts either but that's a different thread.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
canguy(British Columbia)

Good info, thanks for posting. This is a frequent problem.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2009 at 2:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for sharing this information. I have the same exact problem so I ordered a couple of 25-050-21 fuel filters. I would have never suspected that the Sears Manual would have specified the wrong part number. I was having no problem until I ordered this and other parts from Sears to do some routine maintenance. I bet this will fix my problem. Thanks again.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2009 at 10:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks For the information. I was at sears about a month ago looking for oil, air and fuel filter, the sales associate look the #'s up and said the fuel filter was a universal fit. I passed on it.I have a Craftsman #GT 6500

    Bookmark   August 1, 2009 at 11:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here's a link to all three Kohler OEM fuel filters WITH their micron rating, pictures of each style, and revision info...

click here

Aftermarket suppliers too often sub different part numbers into one pacific rim replacement filter and we're left to solve the new problem that filter gives us.

As rarely as fuel filter replacement is required I always seek out the current, correct, Kohler OEM filter.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2009 at 12:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Wow, now I know the difference.. :)

I just asked about that in another thread.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 8:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wwest(7 WA)

The type of filter can even be problem if the engine has a fuel pump. These vacuum, ENGINE vacuum, operated fuel pumps do not provide enough suction to overcome even a slightly restrictive fuel filter.

A simple screen filter, not a paper filter, works best.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 3:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm having the same problem finding a fuel filter for my 2005 GT5000.
The manual calls for a 24-050-10.
I picked up a filter from Napa and it is the clear plastic and smaller (#3001) whereby my original is the white plastic.
My tractor only has 30 hours on it and this is the first filter change.
It run fine, but I want to change it anyway.
Is there any replacement filter other then a Kohler that is just as good or should I just put on the Kohler EOM?
Do you think maybe my manual is wrong as well and I need another part number?

    Bookmark   December 8, 2010 at 1:33AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I've seen non oem filters work fine on many Kohlers. 2405010s1 filter is a 15 micron filter should you wish to compare and give it a try. Kohler had made it known that runability issues can occur in certain applications. I do use Kohler filters myself. There are people I deal with that put Napa or Fram all over everything and feel they have a better product than the OEM. YMMV

    Bookmark   December 8, 2010 at 9:42PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm not sure what the micron size is on the Napa #3001 filter that I bought.
I gave the guy the original part number 2405010 and there were several Napa filters to choose from.
I think the other number 3011.
#3001 which is clear plastic and smaller then my original and the other was the same size as my original, but made of metal.
I have not installed it yet as I may have to take it back.
I checked with Sears and they didn't have the filter.
Seems you have to order them and the price is about double.
I have several Fram G2 filters that are the same size and look identical to the 2405010 and I wonder if that may work.
Why does something as simple as a gas filter have to be such a problem?

    Bookmark   December 9, 2010 at 9:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You can line up a dozen fuel filters that look identical and their micron rating can be all over the chart.

If you don't plan ahead and have a spare fuel filter (a really good idea) and you're looking for Kohler filters and can't find them locally try the Yellow Pages and look for industrial equipment sales and repair.

There's usually always a Kohler engine dealer-service center and they stock Kohler OEM parts.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2010 at 11:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

So, can we say that 15 - 50 micron filters are for fuel pumps and anything above 50 mincrons is for gravity fed?

What type of fuel system would use the smaller 15 micron filter?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 6:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

No Baymee, if you don't want problems what we CAN say is...

Look up the correct filter in the engine manufacturer's manual and that is what you use.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 9:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"So, can we say that 15 - 50 micron filters are for fuel pumps and anything above 50 mincrons is for gravity fed?"
That could be a reasonable assumption. If you look at Briggs. Their red disc filter is 150, their white disc is 75. The white was always labled as a pump filter, but it can be used if there is enough head or rise from the carb to the tank. Their common paper is 60, meant for pumps but really can be used in certain non pump situations. I very seldom put on a red and like to use paper media for the customer that seems to end up w/ debris repeatedly. Kohler's common paper pump filter is 50 and their non pump is 75. So really, the poster that uses clean fuel and a larger micron filter shouldn't see any affect at all.
" What type of fuel system would use the smaller 15 micron filter?"
Command twins on something like a GT5000 have them. Deere never specs this filter. I really like the 15's for the customer who doesn't want to go through the expense of pulling a body due to debris in the tank- if I can get away with it. I've gone as far as adding another disc filter. The old mechanical pumps and the vaccuum pumps do fine with the 15's as far as I've seen. Fuel filters are simple, can be taylored both to the application and the owner's habits. If it is too restrictive, it is 2 hose clamps and a catch pan to change. It is proper procedure when you change a fuel filter to "run the line" to take a sampling of fuel coming through for inspection for water / debris. This also helps to get the w/d that naturally sits back behind the filter that wasn't allowed through.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 10:36AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I had this same problem with my JD Scotts 1642 the first time I changed the fuel filter. In my case I replaced the filter with the common one that comes in most of the John Deere home maintenance kits. (large clear plastic). After replacing the filter, my engine (Kohler Command 16) would stall out when the tank got down to about half-full. To make a long story short, after asking around I was advised to use only the OEM Kohler filter. I put the old one back on and the problem went away. FWIW, John Deere still includes this same filter in their Home Service Kits almost 10 years later.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 2:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It is ALWAYS a good idea to compare abandoned parts with the replacement part and question any differences and not blindly accept that a different replacement part is correct.

When in doubt, always defer to the engine manufacturer's recommendation. Sears still shows the wrong fuel filter as replacement for many of their Kohler engined L&G products.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 3:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"Sears still shows the wrong fuel filter as replacement for many of their Kohler engined L&G products" Deere is the same. Their filters are not Kohler filters just as williston indicated. I think that style is a 25 micron, rathger than the 75. The Scotts and STx w/ gravity feed Kohler is touchy due to the available head. I almost think it a better idea to use the small white Kohler one on these.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 6:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Now I'm really confused.
Should I just take the Napa Filter back and look for an original Kohler replacement with the number 24-050-10?
Nothing I hate worse is having to replace a replacement of any kind.
I live in an area where I must travel a 70 mile round trip to get parts and getting the wrong stuff can be frustrating.
Maybe I should just order a bunch of the Kohler filters over the internet and call it a day.
Thanks again.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 9:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Think of the spec Kohler filter being quite fine. A 15 micron filter keeps finer particulate out than one with a higher #- such as a 51. One Google search turned up a 12 micron rating. If that is a reliable number- it is very close. You could probably find a similar model engine and find it spec'd out with a courser filter also.
Had you had any concerns on contamination of the fuel system?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2010 at 11:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The tractor does sit idle for several months at a time, however when I'm through using it I run all the gas out of the tank and turn the starter over a few time with the chock out to run as much out of the carburetor as possible.
The next time I use it I fill the tank and it starts right up and runs smooth.
The filter is the original and I figured I should change it.
I would have changed it sooner, but I have not been able to zero in on what I thought was the correct one.
I would imagine the finer the Micron filter is the better as I do get into dusty conditions.
However, if the filter is to fine would this cause a restriction?
I assume you are a technician so would it be better for me to just go with the Kohler 24-050-10 or 24-050-10s1?
Using a Fram or the Napa would be easier to obtain locally as long as I can get the proper cross reference numbers.
That seems to be my problem at present as the Napa guy knew nothing about the Microns and the Walmart guy thought the GT5000 was the new Mustang from Ford.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 12:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well, the S1 is the new package # if you go that way. It sounds as though you are not wanting to change the filter twice, so I guess that is your answer- though you may not notice a difference. Treat your fresh fuel with a stabilizer and have enough fuel in the system so you can lower the line enough to drain some fuel out to get out any debris that was behind the old filter.
Or use the Fomoco from the GT 5000 Mustang and you will be stylin' ;)

    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 1:11AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good idea on the stabilizer and drain.
I will do that.
If I don't go with the Kohler filter I would like to try the Fram or Napa for the convenience of availability.
Do you know off hand the numbers for the Fram and the Napa filters?

    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 2:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Sorry, I don't have a proper crossover on the #s. Good luck with your search.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 11:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 12:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Geez Barnes... how often do you change fuel filters?

Here you go, order all you need

Nothing but OEM Kohler filters at a good price and a really nice guy. Click on the filter and it will show you the revisions and specs.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 12:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I would seek out the OEM Kohler that came with the unit and use only that. I was surprised that John Deere would supply a fuel filter in their home service kits that was clearly incompatible with these gravity-fed Kohler engines. This was a common and well-known problem at the time with these engines which was completely cured by going back to the OEM Kohler filter and Deere was aware of it. The same larger clear filter (non-oem Kohler) still comes in the home service kits for these engines.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2010 at 3:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

JL : Good Parts Sourcing Dude lol I use the Same Supplier :)

    Bookmark   December 22, 2010 at 8:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I just purchased a 1992 18 hp Craftsman 917 Kohler-powered mower. I mowed a couple of hours then it ran out of gas. But after filling the tank, it would not restart. I noticed the filter looked pretty dirty, so I replaced it. Just the Sears standard fuel filter. Bummer! Gas still would not get to the carburetor.

I was not about to rebuild the carburetor, clean the choke, buy parts like a solenoid, or run the battery down trying to start it. It had to be something simple, after all IâÂÂd only put in a filter. Which of course entailed disconnecting the old one and draining the lines.

So I sat and pondered the machine that would not run. It had a gravity feed gas system, no fuel pump. Looking at the fuel line more carefully, it came out of the tank, over and down, then up through the filter. Then up higher than the fuel tank so that it could go through a hole in the plate separating the motor from the dashboard, then down to the carburetor, which was itself still higher than the gas tank.

The problem at last came to me: the loop in the gas line downstream of the filter had become a vapor trap. The machine was that way when I bought it, but it had gas in it. I donâÂÂt know how the previous owner had dealt with this, he wasnâÂÂt around when I bought it.

However, there was a gap in between the steel plate and the side of the motor housing under which I could put the fuel line. Not using the hole in the plate at all, and having a smooth upward path from the filter to the carburetor with no high loops to be vapor traps.

And wonder of wonders, IT STARTED!! I finished the yard and put the mower away. So weâÂÂll see if this fixed the problem, or just put it off. If this seems to have done the job, then IâÂÂll probably drill another hole in the back plate to put the gas line through.
The solution was easier to do than what I had done to create the problem. Sort of like a Hippocratic Oath for lawn mower repairs.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 8:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


That's valuable info and would be some help to someone having the same problem. If you had started a new thread instead of resurrecting a four year old thread it would get some attention.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 8:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Thank you for your comment, you may be right. But I did not think that was fair to the originator of the earliest post. He did get responses for a year.

Further, I found his post not by searching GardenWeb, which I did not know existed anyway, but by doing a Google search for "mower fuel filter" problems. So it seemed to me that those in need of a solution to the same problem would look for answers in a similar manner.

And there were helpful comments on the problem elsewhere. Those readers would not find a new thread any more readily than an old thread on GardenWeb. They'd be coming at it the same way I did.

Mine is a rather simple solution, really the result perhaps of a flaw in how the gas line assembly was designed. The original design would work if a fuel pump were in the system, but not with gravity feed. In fact the instructions show a fuel pump on one page, but it is not mentioned elsewhere., Certainly there was none on my mower.

Perhaps my mower was supposed to have a different backplate, but they had run out at the factory. If the instruction manual has drawings that don't apply, and typos on parts numbers, pretty much any scenario could obtain.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 4:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I too have some reservations about old threads being resurrected by a new poster seeking to have HIS problem addressed by hijacking or tacking onto an old thread.
But in this case, Larry08S' post was appropriate in that it added to the existing discussion by OFFERING advice from his own experience with the problem.
Though this thread is dated, the discussion is still applicable and adding one more piece of advice, even at this late date, may still help someone if they find the thread because of a Google search.
It is still recommended that new problems be treated as unique to that person and a new, fresh thread be created for discussing it, but in the case of adding advice to an old thread in the manner done here, I think it can be considered appropriate.
I myself, have chided newbies for hijacking old threads (instead of creating their own new one) when they are wanting someone to help them with what ails their machine, but I think adding advice is a little different than asking for help.
To invoke my "Hypocritic Oath" (yes, I spelled that intentionally), I say "No harm was done".

This post was edited by mownie on Tue, Jun 10, 14 at 9:30

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 9:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I defer to the Professor Emeritus of the forum and his Hypocritic Oath and apologize to the forum for wanting to keep it more ordered and adhere to the unwritten rules that work well in other forums I frequent.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 9:52AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks JAL, but you need not defer to anyone.
You are a driving force and certainly prop up this forum with your sage advice drawn from your experiences.
Rules? No rules, just write. :^)

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 10:26AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


While Just Write suits you to a T, I favor an economy of keystrokes and don't like wasting my time reading a 4 year old thread of considerable size to see how the latest post pertains to the thread... if it even does.

If it's... Rules? No rules, just post then I'll be more selective about what posts I spend my time reading and what I reply to.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 2:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
larso1(So. CO Zone 5)

LAUGHING OUT LOUD!! You two should just get over this MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY stuff and just go out on a date! (sorry, couldn't stop myself)

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 4:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think this thread has been hijacked. Six of the last seven posts are the "post it police" at work. Only one of the seven about the "Kohler fuel filter in your wallet." Hardly the "Magnificent Seven", and Chris isn't even named Chris.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 6:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

By the way, if one goes to the Lawn & Garden Tractors Forum on the website, the Kohler discussion thread comes up. So (1) posting on an old discussion DOES NOT allocate it to the string ball of threads, (2) in fact it reinserts that thread onto the active file and (3) cpmsequently it appears on the current list of âÂÂOn topicâ discussions. (Curious category, one wonders if we still belong).

Therefore, with the GardenWeb way of doing things, my posting (a) made it easy for everyone to locate the earlier discussions. It also (b) enhanced retention and retrieval of earlier useful comments, (c) retains the name of the original poster and creator of the thread, and (d) consequently it may bring others with experiences to offer into the discussion. Not bad for an eveningâÂÂs work.

For guys like me, "Newbies" seems to be the operative term, which does seem unnecessarily condescending and not overly complementary. For example, I may be the oldest one on the thread, and certainly my mower is among the oldest. The first, but probably not the second, also applies to using (and fighting with, and yes trying to mind read the designers of) lawnmowers. Must I really be thought of as a âÂÂnewbieâÂÂ, canâÂÂt I just be âÂÂone of the guysâÂÂ?

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 7:36PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Briggs and Stratton 25hp els OHV help!!!!
I got a this motor attached to a mover off a craigslist...
H&M Contractors
John Deere Or Cub Cadet?
I'm going to buy a new lawn tractor this Spring and...
Briggs fuel pump
Briggs 12HP, vertical, 281707 Type 0185-01. I think...
Kohler Engine Question
I bought a Kohler Lawn tractor engine. New. sv740-3024.Two...
I can handle the new format for Houzz, but what really...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™