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Ranwell1
Ranwell1, Small Engine Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 10085
Experience:  I Own a Lawn Mower Sales and service business (37years). Have 2-cycle and 4-cycle certification.
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I have a JS46 electric start push mower. The electric start

Customer Question

I have a JS46 electric start push mower. The electric start worked for about two months. I charged the battery and it shows a full charge with my meter. When I turn the key, nothing happens. Any ideas on where I might start?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Small Engine
Expert:  Ranwell1 replied 4 years ago.
Chat Conversation Started
Customer:

what brand of mower and what model of mower do you havve?

Customer :

Hello-

Customer :

I have a John Deere Model JS46 electric start pushmower. I included this info with my initial correspondence.

Customer :

OK

Customer :

Hello

Customer:

You did not say John Deere. Just the Model number....but in any case, give me a few minutes and I will send you an answer.

Customer :

I mentioned it was a John Deere in the initial contact information.

Customer:

The first thing you must do is make sure that the wires that are connecting the ignition switch are fully connected and are not looose. Then make sure that the contraol bail is fully pulled. If the cable is not adjusted correctly and the shut-off is not being pulled all the way, there is a safety switch that will prevent the starter from engaging. This switch is usually located at the engine. Sometimes the cable has to be tightened enough to actuate this switch. Next the battery may not be good. Even if it tests as fully charged with a volt meter, it may have a dead sell and is not providing the amount of cranking amps that is needed to engage the starter. You also could have a bad ignition switch that will need to be replaced and finally...and we all hope this is not the problem, the starter may be bad and need to be replaced.

Customer:

Most of the time it is the cable adjustment and the switch.

Customer :

I checked the ignition switch with my meter and it appears to be working. I will go check the control bail and see if the problem is there...

Customer :

If the mower starts with the rope, I would assume the control bail would be working properly.

Customer :

OK

Customer :

The control bail is working well enough that the mower will start with the rope and the mower will die when it is released.

Customer:

that is not always good enough. Sometimes you have to have it pull farther to engage the switch for the ES

Customer:

sorry I had to step away to help a customer hereat my shop

Customer :

I can't see an adustment for this cable.

Customer :

No problem.

Customer:

It may not have one that you can get to. Sometimes you just have to replace the cable. Sometimes you have to bend a tab. I am sorry I can't remember exactly what your model has. There are so many models to try to remember. But the symptoms and repairs are very similar.

Customer :

I'm not sure where to go from here....

Customer:

Actually I am not sure what else to tell you. If I had it here in my shop, I would check the starter to make sure that it is not the problem Unhooking the cables and testing it with an auxillery batter to see if it turns on. I would then check the switch that the cable connects to .

Customer:

If you cannot figure this out yourself, It probably would not be too expensive to have a good dealer mechanic check it for you. It is fairly routine.

Customer :

Problem is that I have to drive too far to the dealer...

Customer:

Keep working at it, You sill find it then. But it usually is in theat switch or the battery or the starter. Check the starter too.

Customer:

Keep working on it, You will find the problem. It is usually the switch , the battery or the starter.

Customer :

I'll have to get back...

Customer:

Ok, have a good day. I may be on again later tonight ..or it might be tomorrow

Customer:

Just let me know and I will try to help some more if I can. I may be ofline for a while. I may be online later tonight or tomorrow.

Expert:  Ranwell1 replied 4 years ago.
Chat Conversation Ended

If you are still working with your Expert on this question, you can post additional replies and receive additional information on this page.  If you received a satisfactory answer in Chat, you can accept the chat conversation above.
Expert:  Ranwell1 replied 4 years ago.

Just let me know and I will try to help some more if I can. I may be off-line for a while. I may be online later tonight or tomorrow.

 

 

 

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
The electric start is still not working. It was my understanding that you would be able to tell me how to fix the problem. You did not tell me anything that wasn't obvious and after spending several hours, you were not sure about the exact model of my mower, but that all problems were basically the same. I would expect you to tell me how to fix the problem, not tell me that the problem was with the starter, the battery, the switch, or the connections. I knew this before I contacted you. I would like to know how to isolate the problem.... That is why I contacted you.
Expert:  Ranwell1 replied 4 years ago.

I am not sure exactly what you want. I cannot wave a magic wand and fix the mower for you. I have given you all of the possibilities. Each one of the possibilities could be the problem. If you check each one of them separately you will find the problem. I started with the switch which is located on the engine and is activated by the cable. then I said to make sure that all of the connections are good. Then I said that you must be sure that the battery is fully charged...You could even have a bad battery....even if you have charged it. And also you must charge the battery for at least 48 hours straight...uninterrupted. Then the starter switch must be checked. And then the last thing is the starter itself. If all of these things are working correctly the starter should work on your mower

 

There is nothing else to tell you. It is a process of elimination. I can't test the unit for you, you are going to have to do that yourself. My job is to give you good suggestions that can lead to a solution.

 

My job is NOT to fix it for you.

 

What you are supposed to be paying me for is my time to try to help. If you ask any expert or small engine mechanic if I was giving you the correct information, I am sure that they will ALL cay that I have more than given you enough information .

 

Good luck and please let me know what you find the problem to be. I am sure that it will be one of the things that I have mentioned.

 

sent 6/29/2010 at 10:05 PM Delete Reply To Private Message
Do NOT Report Report To Management Report and Block Sender What is this?

 

Here is my comprehensive carburetor and fuel answer that may give you some ideas.

 

As engines sit or get older, fuel that is left in the carburetor can turn to gum and varnish and cause this and other problems. Also, any gasoline that was left in a gas can for a period of more than 30 days must be discarded because it also has begun to turn to varnish.

 

Today's gasoline's contain MTBE and alcohol. (Ethanol) They turn to "Junk and garbage" very quickly. Alcohol is partially water (H2O). And they call it "Oxygenated fuels! It is the oxygen that breaks down the organic compounds in the fuel and turns the gas to "Garbage" (Gum and varnish) The fuels we had just a few years ago had no alcohol in it and would store for longer periods of time before going stale... and fuel stabilizers do almost nothing to prevent the fuel from going bad with the changes in today's fuels.

 

Do not buy gas from the "Discount" Stations. The discount stations get a reduced price on gas because they may be buying fuel that is nearly 30 days old already. You may be getting fuel that's nearly stale right from the pump when buying from a discount station. Purchase your fuel from the well-known stations such as Shell, BP, Sonoco, Phillips 66 etc.

 

More than 70% of all of our repairs in our lawn mower business are due to this same issue. You most likely have dirt, gum, varnish...etc in your carburetor plugging up the small passageways and jets in the carburetor.

 

The carburetor must be removed from the engine. Clean all parts with carburetor cleaner and blow out all the small holes and passageways with compressed air. Remove all of the non-metallic parts since the carburetor cleaner will cause them to be disfigured decompose and plug the carburetor as time goes on.

 

Wash the carburetor cleaner off of the metal parts by washing them in warm, soapy water then rinsing with clean water. Dry them by blowing it off with compressed air. Make sure that all the passageways are blown dry before reassembling.

Reassemble using a NEW carburetor rebuild kit.

 

DO NOT TRY TO REASSEMBLE WITHOUT USING A COMPLTE CARBURETOR KIT! You will just end up having to do the job again.

 

ALWAYS clean the fuel tank and replace the fuel line when doing this repair or you may have to do it all over again. The inside of the fuel line disintegrates over time and these small pieces of rubber will plug up the carburetor too. Dirt and water from a dirty fuel tank will also plug up the carburetor. Find the Model, type and serial or code numbers off of the engine and take them to your local dealer to get the carburetor repair kit.

 

If you do the work yourself, take pictures or at least make a drawing of where all the linkages, gaskets, and component parts go. Correct reassembly is critical.

 

If the carburetor still doesn't work correctly, you may have to take it to someone who has an "Ultra-sonic" cleaning machine. This machine uses carb cleaner and ultrasonic vibrations to get the very small passageways clean when traditional methods fail.

 

If you don't feel comfortable with this kind of repair I would suggest sending it to a reputable shop.

 

 

 

Expert:  Ranwell1 replied 3 years ago.

I just got some new information about your mower.

 

Deere is having a tolerance stacking issue with the starter interlock attached to the flywheel brake and the throw length of the MZR cable.

 

If it's JS46 it is still under warranty. You need the new cable and an interlock/brake Assy.

 

This is available at most John Deere shops.

Take this back to the dealer and have them repair this under the warranty.

 

 

 

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