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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ive had this mower for a couple of years with no problems...until now.

I was mowing the lawn last week when the blades just stopped. The engine was running fine. The blades would engage and run for about 5 seconds after I would try to engage them them. The next time I tried engaging the blades, the engine killed almost immediately. Now the engine wont do anything. The battery reads 10.5 volts with the key off. It drops down to 6 when I turn the key to accessory position.
I connected a car battery to the mower. It turns and turns but never starts. I thought about calling the shop where I purchased it to ask them but I'm sure they would rather work on it than tell me the problem.

Can anyone suggest what could be wrong? Any help is greatly appreciated!
 

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Welcome Klysmo!

With those voltages not much doubt the original battery is way low. I wonder if the problem that started it might be the blade clutch drawing too much current. Maybe that opened a fuse or fusible link someplace causing the no start even with another battery swapped into the circuit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the reply!

I am going today to pickup a new battery for it. I have already looked at all of the fuses but I will certainly look again. How do I check the blade clutch?

I am pretty good at repairing things but my knowledge of mowers is extremely limited. :confused: I would guess the blade clutch cannot be checked until the engine can be started.
 

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Here's some generic tests for clutches:

Fixing Electric Clutches

I also wonder if maybe your battery voltage was just getting too low (due to bad battery or lack of charging) to hold the clutch. But that does not explain why it would not start with the other battery. :confused:

I guess get the fresh battery installed and see if it will at least startup and run and take it from there. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wow! Thank you for the link about testing the clutch! That is the kind of info I have been searching the net for. I haven't found anything that spells it out quite like that. I wasn't able to find any other info like that on messicks.com

I installed the new battery. It started on the first try! I turned it off to go inside for something cold to drink. When I came back out it went back to not starting. The voltage on the battery was good. The motor would turn but it just wouldn't turn over. I started checking connections and found the connections to the selenoid loose so I tightened them up. I also took the connector off of the clutch just to inspect it. I didn't see anything physically wrong with it. The mower started right up so I proceeded to cut my lawn. :DThe blades engaged with no problems.
The following morning I tried to start it again and it wouldn't start. I don't know exactly what to do next.

At least I still have another week until I have to cut the grass again.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Happy 4th of July!!!


Just an added note...Yesterday, I gave it a shot of starting fluid in the air intake. It took about three turns of the key but it started. Now I'm guessing it could be an issue with the motor.:confused:
 

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Yeah it sounds like you might have been blessed with two separate problems going on at the same time. :rolleyes: If you think it is lack of fuel you might check to see if it has a fuel shut off solenoid on the carb. That would be one place to look.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well...
I got home from work yesterday and she fired right up!

Maybe there was one of those big Louisiana skeeters stuck in the carburetor:confused:. I will go out to the garage and try to start it in a bit. I will report back later.

Thanks for the help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I tried and it wouldn't start. I gave it just a tiny shot of starting spray in the air intake and it started right up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Once it starts, everything everything is fine.

There are no problems to report with the clutch engaging. That was solved with the new battery.
 

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Once it starts, everything everything is fine.

There are no problems to report with the clutch engaging. That was solved with the new battery.
Interesting. Almost like it is not getting enough choke at times for a cold start.
 

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I had this problem with a Gravely 2040 ZT. Not only wouldn't it start, it would cut out intermittently while running. An airlock of some sort was suspected. The problem became so frequent, I took to carrying a spray bottle of fuel with me. The mower was taken to a shop for a checkover but nothing could be found. It eventually cleared and hasn't caused difficulties for some months.

Since, my clutch doesn't work and I wonder if the battery could be the culprit. Oddly, if I parked on the ramps with the rear in the air, the blades would disengage after I started the machine but couldn't be turned off following re engagement. Now they're engaged full time and it drains the battery to start it up with the blades engaged. I have a good local small engine shop nearby but at this time of year he's booked up for weeks. The clutch diagnosis link helps, although I don't have an electrical resistance meter. The battery is often low and needs the jumper cables off the truck every so often.
 

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...Since, my clutch doesn't work and I wonder if the battery could be the culprit. Oddly, if I parked on the ramps with the rear in the air, the blades would disengage after I started the machine but couldn't be turned off following re engagement. Now they're engaged full time and it drains the battery to start it up with the blades engaged. I have a good local small engine shop nearby but at this time of year he's booked up for weeks. The clutch diagnosis link helps, although I don't have an electrical resistance meter. The battery is often low and needs the jumper cables off the truck every so often.
Without a meter the first thing I would try is pulling the wires off the blade switch. If that stops the blades from engaging I would change the switch. If they still engage then I would follow the wires and see if they go to a relay. If so, I would instead suspect the relay. Last thought on it might be an internal short to 12V inside a wire harness possibly due to the harness being pinched for some reason.

Actually, the parking it on ramps changing the symptoms would make me suspect a relay problem. Relays can at times be real sensitive like that to position or any twisting forces when they are failing as the contacts only move such a small amount when making and breaking the connection.
 
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