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Rick, Factory Authorized Trainer
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 8057
Experience:  Outdoor Power Equipment technical trainer since 1990, covering eight states.
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troy bilt zero turn .. pto will not engage .. it has been cutting

Customer Question

troy bilt zero turn .. pto will not engage .. it has been cutting on and off for a month now and usally it comes rite back on .. but today it went out and they wont engage anymore ... replaced the pto button today .. tested the battery it has 12.6v and tested the wires going to the pto switch they have 12.4v coming out .. but the blade still will not engage ... what else can i check . i also pulled the clutch down couldnt find anything wrong with it .. what else can i check ???
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Small Engine
Expert:  Rick replied 6 years ago.



Can you give me the model and serial, please? But to start I'll post some general troubleshooting tips. Please look them over, then we discuss in greater detail if this doesn't pinpoint the problem...


First, check your battery. The PTO takes a great deal of current to operate. Consider that you are energizing an electromagnet that has to stay joined with a metal plate while the horsepower of your engine and the load created by the cutting deck are trying to pull them back apart. If your battery isn't fully charged, or is failing under load, the PTO goes cannot work. a fully charged battery will put out about 12.7v. By the time it drops to about 12.1v it's 50% discharged.

Also, check to make sure the battery is rated at least 350 Cold Cranking Amps. If you have possibly replaced your battery, this could be the cause. Also, we find a higher incidence of initially defective batteries sold though discount retailers than though servicing dealers.

If the battery keeps doesn't maintain its charge, you may have a charging system problem. A word or caution, never jump-start a lawnmower with a running car. The higher-powered charging system of the car will likely blow out ad ruin your mower's charging system. The charging system shroud be checked against manufacturer specifications to make sure it's performing properly.

Your PTO switch could be failing. Some switches will "open" when they get hot.

Check for loose wires where they attach to the PTO clutch. If they wiggle loose, current cannot flow.

There's always the possibility the PTO clutch itself could be going bad. Some are adjustable, and this can make a difference, saving the cost of replacement. If you find slots and adjusting nuts, you can go in and check the gap between the two halves with a .010" feeler gauge. Make sure it's adjusted equally all the way around.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
model ... 17be2acg011 serial 1d089620108 ... checked ecerything you listed above
Expert:  Rick replied 6 years ago.

Can you give me a bit? I need to locate a schematic on this model and I also have to run an unexpected errand.


If you prefer to continue right now, feel free to opt me out and continue with another expert. We've got a dozen guys on here right now.


Thank you either way...

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
Expert:  Rick replied 6 years ago.

OK. Here's a schematic that we'll work from. What was the gap on the clutch when you checked it? What voltage was the charging system putting out?


Also, please do a voltage reading on the battery when you try to engage the clutch and let me know what the reading is. We're looking for how many volts the battery drops under load.


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
voltage is reading 14.0v when clutch is ingaged ... its not clicking in the back ... but i have power going back there .. what else could it be?
Expert:  Rick replied 6 years ago.
For some reason I wasn't alerted to your response and just now found it when looking over some old questions. Did you still need assistance?

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