NEWBIES: Terms you need to know, and tools you'll need
Carburetor - a filtering device, used to capture varnish out of gasoline.
Fuel cutoff solenoid - an electrical mechanism attached at the bottom of the carburetor. It's function is to prevent starting the engine whenever the solenoid malfunctions.
Mower deck - a storage place for 180 pounds of grass clippings; skillful design has gradually increased this capacity over the years. Many people collect and bale these clippings and sell it to a neighboring farmer.
Drive belt - a nylon-reinforced rubber v-belt, which can be located by turning the tractor over on its back. Its function is to break.
Fuel tank - storage place for water and other residue.
PTO - an electrical device attached to the engine shaft. Its function is provide power to rotate the mower blades - or not.
Gasoline - a volatile liquid containing ethanol, which is a government-sponsored conspiracy to destroy lawn tractor engines.
Oil - a lubricant intended to reduce wear within the engine. Each engine requires its own specific viscosity, so that no two of your power equipment can use the same oil.
Tires - donut-shaped self-puncturing rubber wheel covers.
Battery - the connection point for jumper cables from your pickup truck. This junction is critical to starting the engine.
Battery tray - storage place for a dead battery.
Idler wheel - an inside-out and backwards pulley-like disc that the belt does not go around. Its primary function is to confuse belt installers.
Bendix - (William) an old-time radio and TV comedian, whose show was called "The Life of Riley." His trademark comment, "What a revoltin' development this is," has become the byword for lawn tractor owners everywhere. If you know nothing about this, contact rustyj; he and I are the only ones here old enough to know, and I've forgotten.
Engine afterfire - sometimes called "backfire," this is your Kohler engine's way of saying goodbye. A secondary function is to keep the dogs on edge.
And now a few of the tools that you will need:
12 mm open end wrench - a finely-machined device that almost fits a 1/2-inch bolt.
Screwdriver - a device to be carried in the back pocket for the purpose of ventilating tractor seats. It can also be used in your automobile.
Socket drive - a tool that is equipped with a laser and invisible feet. When laying on your back under the tractor, the laser determines the precise length of your arm, and the tiny feet move it one inch beyond that distance.
Box end wrench - a device for removing and/or installing nuts and bolts. It is commonly used with a three-foot cheater bar. (Also see "mallet," below)
Mallet - a hammer-like device designed to strike any box end wrench that is coupled to a recalcitrant bolt. The purpose is to break the end out of the wrench.
Tire pressure gauge - a precision instrument used to confirm that the self-puncturing feature of your tires is functioning properly.
Pliers - an adjustable tool used to round off the heads of bolts. Pliers are treated with a chameleon finish, which changes colors to match any background that the tool is laid down on. Normally, you will see a pair of pliers only once before it disappears, which is why serious repairmen buy them by the gross.
Ball peen hammer - an indispensible stress-relieving instrument that is used to beat time on a fender or other nearby object while you shout "dammit, dammit, dammit." Keep several on hand.