craftsman lawn tractor problems
Hello everyone -
I am new here, so please forgive me if my questions are not posed correctly. I have a Sears Craftsman ride-on (apologies that I do not know the exact ID#/type, but its a standard ride-on, 42 inch deck, B & S engine I believe) - it is about 3 years old only.
No major problems until this season - about 4 weeks ago it just died on me. Was mowing fine, finished the lawn, went to get off to close my fence, and it died. I tried all that I could think of to trouble-shoot - and my knowledge of such things is limited, I will admit. I changed the battery and spark plug, changed the ignition switch, checked all the connections, etc. Finally gave up. Sears sends out this jerk to fix it - he was useless, basically jump started the battery, and apparently (I was at work, my wife was home) it started, he drove it around the yard once, parked it, turned it off, and promptly charged us $200. I got home, sat down on the tractor, and it would barely start- was trying to turn over, struggled a lot, then finally did start up weakly - but then once it started up, it wouldn't move! Would not move forward nor backward, and this had never been a problem for me. Called Sears back, they send someone else out - he tells my wife that I had a bad battery (even though I just purchased it like a week before) AND, confirming my worst fears, says my transmission is dying and will need to be fixed (for 450-500$). He changes the battery, and now it starts right up, and DOES move when put into gear (automatic tranny not a manual) BUT, and this is my reason for writing today, when I try to move the tractor forward, there is a significant hesitation - its like it wont go, it wont go, it wont go, and then all of a sudden - bam! - it kicks forward into gear, nearly throwing me off the tractor. Then it rides fine, but after I slow it down again and then try to move forward, same thing - wont go, wont go, and then BAM! kicks in and jolts foward. I almost have to push the gear shift all the way forward before it kicks in. I am concerned the Sears guy might be right and I will need to replace the tranny - but before I did I wanted to check with this forum to see if anyone had other thoughts, or if there is some relatively easy fix for this that I could do. I know I might be having to bite the bullet, but its worth a try. This forum is always a big help.
Many thanks in advance for any ideas/tips that you can provide me.