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Rick, Factory Authorized Trainer
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 8063
Experience:  Outdoor Power Equipment technical trainer since 1990, covering eight states.
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My cub cadet lawn tractor will not start. It tried to fire

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My cub cadet lawn tractor will not start. It tried to fire up using the key then everything quick working. No clicks or noises at all while turning the key. I have changed the battery. Same result. Any ideas as to what issue I may have?

Does it crank if you jump the top contacts of the solenoid with a screwdriver?


Do you have a voltmeter we can do some testing with?

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Beyond my knowledge. Not sure what the solenoid is.

There's a number of things that could be wrong. Such as the key switch, the solenoid, a wire could be disconnected, etc.


To determine what the problem is, we will need to do a bit of electrical troubleshooting. Do you have a meter?


It would be helpful to know what occurred right before the problem happenend. Can you elaborate it bit?


Thank you,



Customer: replied 8 years ago.

I have a meter. I am not able to go test anything right now unfortunately.


When I tried to start it everything sounded normal except that it made a slightly louder clicking sound. The engine did not start up, but it was trying to in choke mode. After that I pulled the knob that engages the blades thinking maybe this was on accidentily and preventing the startup. It clicked like it was doing something electrical. It did not help. I pulled this same knob in and out a few times because it was making an electrical clicking sound as was turning the key off and on. Then it just stopped doing anything alltoghether. Pulling the know in and out and turning the key do nothing at this point. Nothing electrical appears to be functioning. I changed the battery, but no change.

Since nothing is working at all, first check the fuse. If you follow the red battery cable, it will lead to the solenoid I referred to earlier. It will be bolted to the frame and it a black cylindrical device with two large wires going to two terminals on the top. Where the red battery cable hoos to it, there will be another smaller red/black wire that will eventually wind up at the key switch. If you follow this wire from the solenoid, you'll find a 20A fuse in the wire. Please check to see if it's blown.


Let me know.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thanks will do. If not blow should I "jump the solenoid". Assuming that should try to start the engine?

Check th fuse first. That might be the whole problem.


No. Jumping the solenoid shouldn't blow the fuse. It's on a different part of the circuit.


Yes, try that to see if it cranks if the fuse isn't blown. Doesn't even have to start. Just so we know it will crank over. And be very careful not to touch anything other than the top two posts together. Hold onto the insulated part of the screwdriver while you do it. A bit of sparking is normal.


Keep me posted with what you find and we'll work through this. When I'm confident we've isolated the problem, I'll post an answer for you to accept. But I want you up and running first.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.

It was the fuse. Something that I actually did not know the mower had. Thanks. I just finished mowing the knee high grass.

Outstanding. Glad we were able identify it, and that it was something simple to fix. I'll post this as an answer for you to accept if you are satisfied with my service. Thank you so much, and very best of success with everything your hands touch!
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