I have a 2005 John Deere 155 C automatic riding lawn mower that won't start. It stopped while I was mowing last week (we have an acre plus in grass). Yesterday I found a blown fuse near the battery, and burned wires near the belt drive. The wires were from the seat switch. I replaced the fuse, fixed the wires, charged the battery, replaced the spark plugs, changed the oil and filter, and cleaned the air filter. The lights come on when I turn the key, and when I turn the key to the start position, the flywheel starts to turn- but only rotates about a quarter inch before it locks up. There is no sound of a starter grinding. The blades turn freely by hand, and the rear wheel also turn freely by hand. I'm not sure how to proceed.
Model: John Deere
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OK, now for the answer...
This could be a difficult situation to resolve because of the burned wiring and such, but in normal circumstances, the problem is usually the valves that need to be adjusted.
If the valves have too wide a gap, the compression release will not work and this will cause too much compression. This will make the engine hard to rotate.
These valves need to be adjusted at least every 2 years and sometimes every year.
This problem may not have anything to do with the fuese and wiring problem you had earlier.
Even if the engine was running fine before, this can still be the problem.
Ok, How do I adjust the valves?
Another possibility is that the caqrburetor may have started to overflow because of dirt in the carburetor that is holding the float needle open.
If this is the case, you would need to completely clean and rebuild the carburetor with a COMPLETE carb uretor kit.
First take the spark plug/s out and try to turn the engine over with the sarter.
I had the mower on its side for quite a while yesterday while I was cleaning it and searching for burned wires or tripped fuses. Could that have caused the carb to need repair?
Ok, then what the problem is , is that you have filled the cylinder with oil and gas.
Take the plug/s out and turn the engine over with the starter.
It will most likely push a lot of oil and/or gas out the plug hole. Also you will most likely have filled the AIR FILTER with oil and gas, so you will have to replace the air filter.
At least you should check the air filter to see if it has any liquid on it.
Next is a bit of warning.... I do not want to be rude here but it HAS to be said.
NEVER EVER< EVER< EVER....turn ANY mower on it's side foe ANY reason !!!!!!'
If you have to get under it, you should lift the front end off the ground so that it is at no mre than a 45 Degree angle.
Once you have gotten all of the oil and gas out of the cylinder.......Check the oil and make sure that it is full.
Then clean or replace the spark plugs and re-install them
Then try to start the engine. It will SMOKE LIKE CRAZY for about 5 minutes.
Once this is done smoking, then it should be fine.........unless...... you still have the same problem that caused the fuse and wires to burn in the first place.
Ok . I will go outside and remove the spark plugs and then see what happens when I turn the key. I'll text back in a few minutes. Thanks
It appears that you have only corrected the result of the problem, but have not found the REAL problem that caused the wires to burn in the first place.
I removed the park plugs. When I sat on the mower and turned the key to the start position, all that happened was a slight click. The lights come on, but the starter doesnt engage and the flywheel didn't move at all.
In any case, I think that we problaby have found the answer to yor question of why it will not turn over.
AT least I don't think that you will have to do a valve adjustment....at least not right now.
So now we still have a wiring problem.
because nothing happened when I turned the key?
If it is a slight click, it might be nothing more thatn the fuel solenoid clicking...and that is normal.
Now I am thinking that the problem might be one of the safety switches.
Or even the starter solenoid.
The first thing that I will have you do is to take a jumper and jump between the two large posts on the starter solenoid.
If this turns the engine over, then we know that the starter is good and the engine is not stuck.
which should I start with?, and where do I find the start solenoid? I don't see anything that looks like a starter- I know what an auto starter looks like- is it a smaller version for a mower?
If that is the case, then the problem is most likely the brake/clutch switch or the mower deck engagement switch or any of the wires that go to them
yes it is a smaller version\\But................
What you should do is follow the POSITIVE battery cable down to where it connects to the starter solenoid.
That would be the starter solenoid.
Then there is a large battery cabel that goes down to the starter.
on the engine.
OK, I follow the positive cable to the starter solenoid, and place a screw driver between the posts to see it it engages. What position does the key need to be in, and do I need to replace the spark plugs before I do that?
We actually may be getting into something more complicated thaat you may be equipped to handle.
No, yu do not have to install the spark pl;ugs, You still may have oil in the cylinder.
The key can be in any position...but off would be best.
All you are doing is trying to find out if the starter is good or bad.
Quite possible. If it helps, my experience with small engines is very limited, as is my overall mechanical experience. However, I managed to remove and replace the trnasmission on a 2001 Ford F250 with just guidance from someone at just answer. I am heading outside now to check the start. Thanks!
If the starter is good, meaning if it turns the engine over, then we can work backwaards... Checking the safety switches and then the solenoid. and then the waries.
But remember wiring issues are very difficult mor most people to figure out.
Especiall if they have been melted or burned.
I jumped the starter posts. All that happened was the starter clicked and the gear engaged just enough to tap the flywheel gear. It didn't do more than that. The engine did not turn over.
OK, then you may actually have a bad starter or even a locked up engine.
See if you can get to the top of the engine and turn it over by hand.
If you can turn it over by hand, then at least you know the engine is not locked up.
Then it is likely that the starter is bad.
Do I just turn the flywheel gear?
If this is the case, I suggest that you take this to a good shop so that they can find out for sure. You don;t want to replace expensive parts without making sure that they are really bad.
The flywheel ring gear is part of the flywheel.
So if you can get the flywheel to turn, the engine over, then it will usually tell you that the engine isnot locked up.
There is a possibility that you BLEW the engine and that is what cause all the problems.
Now we are probably getting into more that you will want to tackle.
Sometimes the starter gear will get stuck in the flywheel ring gear and liock things up, so you might try to see if you can get to that gear and see if it is stuck.
I am going to have to leave right now, as I have another obligation for a few hours.Try what I mentined and let me know how thigs come out....................
If you need more help, just leave me a message and wi WIll get back to you..........................................."Please leave a GOOD rating for me as that is the only way I get paid for my time. If you cannot give me one of the highest ratings, then please do not rate me AT ALL until we discuss this answer further and you are happy with my answer".......................
It will rotate about 270 degrees, then it hits a stop.
Then hyou most likely have a blown engine
The connecting rod is liley broken and when it rotates that far and stops, it is hitting the broken rod with the crankshaft jurnal
It is time to have a good shop look at it.
At least we now know that there is something REALLY wrong
It most likely stopped bercause of the broken connecting rod and it locked against it.
I have to go now.........................thanks for letting me help. I wish we could have found something simple...................If you need more help, just leave me a message and wi WIll get back to you..........................................."Please leave a GOOD rating for me as that is the only way I get paid for my time. If you cannot give me one of the highest ratings, then please do not rate me AT ALL until we discuss this answer further and you are happy with my answer".......................
Thanks. That wasn't what I was hoping for, but at least I know what to do next. I appreciate you help.
I Own a Lawn Mower Sales and service business (37years). Have 2-cycle and 4-cycle certification.