Riding Lawn Mower Problem - Dies when PTO engaged

texicanApril 28, 2008

When I pull the switch to engage the PTO, the engine bogs down real quick and dies. It sounds almost like it has too much choke or something (but that's not it).

It is a John Deere L130. I got this mower used as a hand down. It has not been abused or anything, but we aren't sure why this is happening. Any ideas?

It moves (I can see the grass clippings come out for a milli-second) but then it bogs down and dies.

PS. This is my first riding mower. I am a total novice and what to check for.

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jptgs1(Zone 5, Chicagoland)

I have a Deere STX 38 that is 14 years old. It does the same thing when it's cold. I have found letting it run a full throttle for a few minutes takes care of the problem for me. I haven't figured out the cause, just a cure for mine. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2008 at 10:48PM
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Make sure your deck spindles etc. rotate freely.

Since that engine is a Kohler Command Twin, head gaskets are always suspect.
See if one cylinder is weak by alternately disconnecting one spark plug wire and seeing how the engine runs. Compare the 2 cylinders against each other.
I recommend grounding the disconnected plug wire.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 4:43AM
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Ground the plug wire ??? Won't that short out the ignition coil ? If it's a single coil and no distributor, the spark would be lost on both cylinders.

Not sure that would be so good for the ignition module, either.



    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 10:12AM
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Bill has the module thing covered. 2 coils. Grounding the plug wire keeps gremlins from killing the cd in the coil. Be 100% sure on the deck. Roll the belt off the PTO if you want to test it that way.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 10:40AM
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Thanks for the info, Tom. I am now informed.

Sorry about that, Bill.



    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 12:50PM
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machiem(Z8 WA)

I will second the notion that you need to let it warm up before attempting to engage the blades.

My Kohler single does it too.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2008 at 1:38PM
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Thanks for the help guys.

Well after playing with everything, it ended up being a problem with the safety switch under the seat.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 7:30AM
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Seems to be a lot of us JD Kohler owners with the same problems. I wish I had a color coded schematic to help in hooking up wires that have been bypassed

    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 4:35PM
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When I pull the switch on my JD the PTO clicks and the engine starts to lug down. The Mowing deck is not even on the tractor. I got the tractor recently after a friend of mine passed away. It hasn't been used for several years and there has been a lot of tampering with seat switch etc.(completely disconected) where can I get info so I can hook things up right again?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2008 at 12:50PM
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davidandkasie(Z8 MS)

if the deck is not even on it, then either you have a bad PTO or a bad safety switch. the wiring diagrams are on the deere parts website.

does it sound like it bogs down or like you just cut the key off? if it bogs, then look at the PTO. if it sounds just like when you kill it with the key, then try holding down teh yellow RIO button while you turn on the PTO. if it works, then the mower thinks you are in reverse so you need to look at the RIO.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2008 at 4:21PM
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I am having the same issue with a JD L130... When I am in the driveway and pull up the electronic PTO to engage the mower the blades engage and the engine dies at the same time. If I spike the choke for a split second then turn the choke off I can keep the engine running with the mower engaged then it is fine and the engine revs higher, It almost sounds like the engine is not reving up quick enough to keep the engine running when engaging the PTO... I removed the belt from the PTO and when engageing the electronic PTO the engine bogs for a second then revs up and runs fine. Does this mean there is an issue with the PTO? Is there any way of checking the PTO? Or is what I did the best check? Before I replace the PTO I just want to verify that is the problem... Thank you!!!


    Bookmark   May 14, 2010 at 2:58PM
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