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stevenc150

John Deere 425 Mower Problems

stevenc150
16 years ago

I purchased this mower 4 years ago. It only started doing it recently, probably within the last year or so. After the engine gets to operational temperature if I happen to shut the engine off it floods out to the point it will barely start.

And once it does start it coughs black puffs of smoke out for 30 seconds or more, which is why I say it seems to be flooding out. I've gotten into the habit of after mowing my acre yard, I always stop and reach under the raised deck and get out as much grass as is reachable. When I go to start the mower back it starts the same old crap. Especially after the reputation of John Deere lawn tractors I would expect better. Any info would be greatly appreciated. I did try getting new spark plugs and air filters but to no avail. Thanks.

Comments (69)

  • macguy
    15 years ago

    Sounds like either a faulty brake switch or seat switch either of which are easy to bypass. If the hours are the same then someone is not telling the truth though it is common for the mechanic to start the machine and let it run sitting outside for a long period of time.

  • jdfanatic
    15 years ago

    grassguy,

    I would look at the switch under the seat first. In fact, for the subject of a test, upplug it and jumper it out with some ~ 12 gauge copper wire. Then try cranking it up.

    Cheers

    JDFANATIC

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  • greenhobby
    15 years ago

    Or the seat switch has come loose and the mechanic is a bit larger than you (closing the switch when sitting). You have to be on the seat to start the unit. It will run (without PTO engaged) with parking brake on only.

    -gh

  • grassguy
    15 years ago

    Thank you, jdfanatic. The 12-gauge copper jumper worked on the seat switch. I had tried a smaller wire with no luck. Got to have good contact. My JD425 cranked and smoked a lot from all the carb cleaner and starter fluid. It ran for four minutes and quit like the ignition had been turned off. The carb and cylinders were wet so gas was not a problem. I always run new gas with Sta-Bil, anyway. When trying to trouble shoot this problem, I dry out the carb and cylinders and add new CJ8 plugs every time. I loosened the gas cap. Then I removed the gas filter and blew out the gas line in both directions with an air hose. Both air filters are new. It cranked. In about four minutes, it suddenly quit without a sputter. I repeated the above steps twice more. Finally, in desperation - and at a loss, I tried something crazy. I felt like the problem might be electrical. I clicked the yellow mower-engagement knob up and down a few times leaving it out in the engaged position. I turned on the ignition, pressed the brake, choke all the way back and throttle at 25%. When I pushed the mower-deck button in, it cranked. I thought it was a fluke. In about five minutes, it quit again. I repeated the exact same steps, using the mower-deck knob as a starter. It cranked. I shut it down and soaked the mower knob, shaft and all I could reach under the dash with electrical-contact cleaner. The JD425 cranked the normal way. I cut ten acres in seven hours stopping a few times for a break and to refuel. Each time it cranked like it ran like new again. At the end of a cutting day, I always blow out the tractor with a back-pack blower and add a clean, foam pre-filter air cleaner. Thank you again, JDFANATIC. I wish you a lot of good luck for helping others like myself when they are at a loss. You did more by writing one sentence than my dealer accomplished in three weeks costing me over $100.00 and a full tank of new gas. Now, thanks to you, I'm caught up. Have a great day!

  • jdfanatic
    15 years ago

    grassguy,

    Thanks for your kind words. I'm glad it all worked out. Those 425s are great machines.

    Cheers

    JDFANATIC

  • cpowell1280
    15 years ago

    When I engage the mower-engage knob, a 15 amp fuse blows and kills the engine. After replacing fuse, engine run fine until mower is engaged, then the fuse blows.

  • joer10
    15 years ago

    I had the same problem. Replaced solenoid, but problem persisted. Transaxle fluid was slightly over-filled, drained back to min/max range. No more blown fuses after 10 hrs.

  • grassguy
    15 years ago

    An update to my last posting is necessary. The fact that my JD425 cranked by using the mower-deck button WAS a fluke. How it cranked is not as important as why it cranked - and why it did not crank. After a month of frustration and continued trouble cranking - and stopping - I carried my JD425 back to the dealership. It was as clean as new. I had tried every suggestion available on the internet without success. My dealership mechanic found the problem and replaced the "Time Delay Module." I must say that my sweet Kawasaki 20HP OHV is cranking and running better than when it was new - and it has logged 650 hours. I did learn one bit of interesting information from the dealer. If you accidentally leave your switch on, the hour meter will continue to run even though the engine is not running. Kudos to my John Deere mechanic for getting me back in the saddle again. Thank You!

  • ccclarence
    14 years ago

    I have a 1994 jd 425 and it won't run I have replaced the fuel and air filters but can't get gas past the new filter. It will turn over with starting fluid but won't run. Help

  • macguy
    14 years ago

    Do you have the fuel filter pointed in the right direction? Uncouple the fuel filter and switch ends. If the fuel still won't pass through it start checking to see if the fuel pump is working. Disconnect the fuel line from the filter on the fuel tank side of it and turn the key to the on position. If the pump is working you should see a healthy stream of fuel gushing out of the line.

  • mownie
    14 years ago

    If the main jet is clogged, or if the fuel shutoff solenoid (if so equipped) is not opening, you will not move any fuel through the hose and filter. A "stuck closed" needle valve in the float bowl will also produce identical symptoms. If it runs for a second or 2 when primed with carb cleaner or other volatile fuel, you need to check for those conditions mentioned above. Click the link below to a thread in this forum similar to your issue.

    Here is a link that might be useful: not getting fuel

  • breezybiv
    14 years ago

    My fuel pump is not energizing after I turn the key, could this be caused by the time delay module? There is a fuel pump fuse, but I can't find it. HELP!! Greg...

  • evensteven71
    14 years ago

    I have a 425 jd and the problem is that when it's cold or has been sitting a little while after it ran, I turn on the mower and it wants to sputter but if I lower the rpm it will run ok. After a while I then run it w.o.t. with no problems. It seems to do this when it is hot out,(above 75f). That was a few weaks ago now today I went to start it and it would crank over but not start. After a while of cranking it started up but ran for a few seconds than die. Try to restart it and it would backfire and run backwards. It has 1010 hours on it and haven't had any problems until this year. It needs a valve lash adjustment on it and I need the Specs. on that also.
    Every thing is cleaned (radiator, fins, air filter, fuel filter, oil filter and new oil. I've read some of the sujestions and will do what I can. And it might be that its the spark delay on it is going bad because it runs fine in lower temps,(below 75f). I also snowblow in the winter. Any help would be realy helpful. Thanks.

  • jdfanatic
    14 years ago

    evensteven,

    From what you describe, it could be the time delay module. If it is, the good news is that it's an inexpensive fix.

    Just for grins, try jumpering out the seat switch with ~ 12 gauge wire.

    Let us know how you make out.

    Cheers

    JDFANATIC

  • corwin522
    14 years ago

    If anyone has a service manual for a John Deere 425 I would appreciate it if you would email it to me. corwin522@myway.com

  • corwin522
    14 years ago

    Response to breezybiv:
    If you can't find the fuel pump fuse it may not have one. If you do not hear the pump running check and wiggle the connections. This worked on my John Deere 425. One of the wires coming from ignition may not be making a good connection to the fuel pump. Maybe someone else will post and tell us which color wire from ignition to the fuel pump.

  • degnol
    14 years ago

    The "front" main seal, towards the front of the tractor has been leaking. Access looks easy after removing the grill and battery. Has anyone replaced theirs? Does it require any special service tools?

    Thanks
    Ed

  • _mmkmiller_gmail_com
    14 years ago

    My front seal was easy to replace, but had the crankcase cover removed. If you can pierce the metal part of the seal with an icepick-like tool, you should be able to pry it right out. Based on the ease with which my seal came out, this shouldn't cause you any grief.

  • rwinger
    14 years ago

    My 425 has been running flawlessly. Last night it died while mowing and I found it blew the upper 15A fuse. After letting it set over night, I started it up and within 15 seconds of starting the mower (PTO), it blew again. I replaced it and restarted the engine only, and within 15 seconds it blew again. What does the upper fuse go to? Anyone have a remedy suggestion? Thank you.

  • buck1-2008
    14 years ago

    Water getting in combustion chamber 400hrs, dealer says change head gaskets and make sure heads are flat. Did all this was ok all summer now that it is cold it is leaking again. any suggestions other than change heads. Thanks

  • allen_ractor
    13 years ago

    hello, my 425 mower wont run without battery attached. i asked the dealer were i could find the output wire from the stater and he told me that 90% of the time the voltage regulator is bad. so i bought a $65.00 regulator and have the same problem. so i will ask you. do you know were the output wire is located from the stator. saturday i will be removing the fly wheel cover, and then the flywheel in order to locate were the wires run to. then testing with a voltmeter. i'd rather here of an easier way

  • timkniess
    12 years ago

    I had the same problem. Wet plugs, won't start. I had my plugs gapped at .030 per John Deere. I found a plug gapping guide for the 22 hp Kawasaki EFI engine I had which said the gap is .025. I changed the gap, and it starts and runs fine now. Before you invest a nickel into troubleshooting, try this. I ran through everything. Changed gas, heet in the gas tank for water, starting fluid. They didn't do the trick. Changing the gap did and it starts right away.

  • zackary
    12 years ago

    My JD 425 is hard to start. When it does start it will sit there and idle. It will run smooth, and then start running rough. When I increase the throttle it will start sputtering and choke itself down...then it dies and it sounds like a gunshot. I have read about this time delay module..for about $15..Where is this module located, and what does it look like???. I called JD they told me $110...I dont think me and JD are talking about the same part...Does anyone have a part number for this time delay module? Do you think this may be my problem or maybe have any suggestions. I have changed the plugs, the electric fuel pump is pumping, I took off and cleaned the carburator...any suggestions???

  • zackary
    12 years ago

    I just wanted to thank you all for all the valuable information. My JD 425 was hard to start and running crazy. For about the last 3 months..every time I shut it down..it sounded like a gunshot...but would start and operate fine...but last week..I got on it...it was hard to start..and ran crazy...sputtering and popping..I changed the spark plugs,,took off the carburator and cleaned it...checked the electric fuel pump....it did not fix the problem.....I went to the JD dealer...he told me it sounded like a bent valve or pushrod...that I needed to bring it in....I got online and saw TIME DELAY RELAY about 10 different times...I went to JD...bought a TIME DELAY RELAY for $23....and that was my problem...Runs Great!!!! Thanks Again! I did not realize you could fix your tractor online!

  • bikesr2tired
    12 years ago

    Do you really want some good information specifically for john Deere Garden tractors? Go to Weekend freedom machines. These guys have all the answers!

    Jim

    Here is a link that might be useful: Weekend freedom machines

  • spydox_gmail_com
    12 years ago

    My 425 starting acting up at about 1100 hours.I just did the FULL service on it- fluids and filters. I didn't change the plugs yet- I'm not sure what it needs. It ran fine after the service for about 40 hours.

    Anyhow it starting quitting very suddenly, hot or cold, then its very hard to start. Today I started it cold, and tried to back it into the garage. It started INSTANTLY. I left the choke on like 1/2 as it likes that for the first 5 min or so.

    Anyhow I started backing and died without sputter, after running like 20 seconds. I cranked and cranked- it would not start at all. I could not smell gas.

    I noticed that when it gets in *this mode* the best thing to do is to turn the key like 2 seconds and release. It won't start if the key is turned, but *eventually* it will *catch* when its spinning, and they key is released, and sputter back to life (with 10 seconds of smoke) if they key is released.

    Where is this timing relay located? ON that circuit board?

  • drake2s
    12 years ago

    My farm partner drove our brand new John Deere x 500 series tractor that he hasn't paid his share of yet over a "stick" and now the mower won't engage. Anyone have any idea what he did to it.

  • perry9
    12 years ago

    My John Deere 425 Garden Tractor (with a '98 Kawasaki engine) is killing me. Won't start at all! After having replaced spark plugs as well as gas and air filters, and see fuel getting into carborator, my father-in-law thinks it may be coils (he held spark plugs with insulated pliers while I turned ignition and saw nothing) or electrical harness (that I can't get unclipped). One local dealer wants me to bring machine in to replace nylon gear for $6-700 (parts and labor) but am suspicious. Need help soon ... my grass is getting really long!

  • mownie
    12 years ago

    While the "nylon camshaft gear" would cause problems in the operation of the engine valves, it would have absolutely no effect on the sparking of the 2 coils.
    The coils are simple magnetos powered by the flywheel magnets as the magnets rotate past the coils.
    If you are not observing any spark from either spark plug cable, you most likely have a problem in the seat switch and/or interlock circuitry.
    When the plugs were tested, did you have them touching a metal surface of the engine? If they are simply held out in the open away from the engine, they will not spark.
    The threaded portion of the plug must be in contact with a metal surface on the engine.
    You can test the coils to see if they are good by removing the flywheel cover to access the coils.
    Each coil has a white wire connected to it. This is the "kill wire". Grounding this circuit is how you kill the engine when you turn off the key switch. It is also how the safety interlock seat switch system kills the engine by grounding the white wire circuit.
    To test the coil, unplug the white wire from a coil and repeat your test for spark. Do the test for both coils, if you see spark when the white wire is disconnected from the coil, but no spark with it connected.............there is a problem in the interlock or seat switch system. And keep your hands away from the exposed flywheel when testing with the flywheel cover removed. It's all too easy to forget that thing spins and can hurt you if you are concentrating on just checking for spark. Work safely at all times!

  • naschulte_hotmail_com
    12 years ago

    I have a 1994 John Deere 425. When it is cold it does not have spark. I cleaned the connecters and thought it was fixed but isnt. After cranking it over awhile and leaving the key on it gets spark again. But some times when it is running it looses spark again. And then the problem starts all over again especially when the engine is cold.

  • g_l_durenda_roadrunner_com
    11 years ago

    Motor running, full gas runs ok, turn on snow blower under load (blowing snow) motor cuts out, back fires somewhat, I replaced plugs (hotter plug) suggested by JD dealer, changed oil, looked a little milky, but was told by another 425 owner thats possible this time of year. tractor is 1994 model 565 hrs, I'm org owner.this happened a couple years ago, changed plugs went away, not this year.

  • didomenico4_msn_com
    11 years ago

    JD LA125, Changed oil, engine strated smoking at an incline, oil level correct, changed float, seat, plugs, gas/oil filter, new fuel pump, plugs. JD mechanic suggested I change these parts, same problem. Oil leaking from the fuel filter. I loosened the gas cap and mowed in the same area where the problem first started no smoke, no leaks, drilled two small holes in the gas cap and mowed with no problems, Problem corrected.

  • kenworth_c16_yahoo_com
    11 years ago

    I have a 97 425 I last spring we had all the nylon gears replaced and it ran good after that, however when the heat of summer set in and same thing this year we are good mowing when its in the 70's but when temps hit the mid to upper 80's and up we have trouble with the mower just shutting down and won't start for awhile and then it will start and we can mow for a bit and then it shuts down again and we repeat the process all over again I am thinking it is somekind of relay or module of somekind and was wondering if anyone else has had this problem with their mowers and have been able to figure out what the problem was we just spent the $800 to get the gears replaced and now this and I would like to fix myself if possible so any words of wisdom would be a great help. Thanks in advanced for taking the time to read this.

  • Jlaine_northlc_com
    11 years ago

    I have a 425 that is running on one cylinder. Changed plugs and coil. The plug does not appear fouled at all. I am wondering if this is a fuel/carb problem? Any Idea's?

  • reichacres_aol_com
    11 years ago

    my 425 is a workhorse until i engage the mower deck and then it turns into a pony . sputtering and carrying on, does it for about 20 min. and then seems to be ok, very annoying. seems to do it more going uphill than down????

  • sqwilliams
    9 years ago

    Have a 97 425 with 20hp(kaw) leaks oil at sending unit,tried rtv,no luck.Does jd make a thread repair kit(helicoil)for this.Said to be a common problem.

  • justalurker
    9 years ago

    sqwilliams,

    Your question might get the attention you seek if you start a new thread and don't hijack a 7 year old thread.

  • MarkIke
    9 years ago

    My John Deere 425, 20hp Ohv Kaw., would not start this spring so i replaced the coils, timing module, plugs,fuel filter, and cleaned ground and re fixed. The battery kept going dead after to tries, but would fire and run for short burst. tested battery and was told it was good and had it charged. Took battery back to auto store to charge again and was told it was bad. Hooked up a 600 CCA battery and now it starts and seems to be running fine. Problem now is that the mower will engage and takes a while to get to speed and when I start mowing it has no guts and dies in low grass. Checked all fluids and mower blades move freely. ANY IDEAS? THANKS MARK

  • wheely_boy
    9 years ago

    How man cylinders is it actually running on?

  • bill_g_wisconsin
    7 years ago

    Being an old thread, I hope people are still around. Ny 425 had been running like it had a dirty fuel filter... it would miss while going uphill, etc. I replaced the air and fuel filters, and was mowing the lawn and leaves, and after running fine for a while, it coughed a few times and quit, probably running out of fuel. But with fresh fuel, it barely even pops, and will not come close to starting. I do hear the fuel pump when I turn the key, and the shaft on the engine spins when I'm cranking it, but it only rarely pops. When it cranks, it cranks too smoothly, almost like no compression. The plugs are dry. Any thoughts? Airbound? Fuel pump? I'd like to get it running and out of the driveway before the snow starts.

  • bikesr2tired
    7 years ago

    Depending on the year, Kawasaki used a plastic camshaft gear. I believe they changed it to a metal one in 1996. If you have fuel, air and spark it should do something, but if the valves aren't doing anything you aint going nowhere. Also I've had issues with the ignition module. I was going along and it just died like I turned the key off. If you want more answers you should start a new thread.

  • TOM TAORMINA
    6 years ago

    olddog1100

    I purchased a used 2001 JD425.

    Trying to be a good DIYer, along with everything else, I changed the Trans-axle oil and filter, (hours now being at approx 600) . Now when I finish cutting and shut down, there are some serious "expansion and contraction" noises (aka kocking) while it's cooling off. These were not present before I did the preventative maintenance on it. Any ideas?

  • rexlex
    6 years ago

    noise coming from tranny area or where?

  • TOM TAORMINA
    6 years ago

    The noise is definitely coming from the transaxle.

    I can feel the "knocking" if I rest my hand on the trailer hitch. The oil level is up to the top of the range. I wonder if I have trapped air in the filter? It didn't mention that as a possible problem in the care book.

  • rexlex
    6 years ago

    dunno about trapped air in filter, but prolly good idea to do a system purge - book should have details, if tranny is a owner serviceable type.

    If not, activate the hydro tranny lockout to disengage rear wheels -block front tires - start engine midthrottle - move speed control from neutral to full forward & hold for 5 seconds; repeat going from neutral to full reverse. Repeat entire procedure 5 times. re-engage tranny lockout - operate tractor - chk for noise.

  • TOM TAORMINA
    6 years ago

    Used the tractor again yesterday.

    The noise is not coming from the transaxle after all but rather the rear hydraulic cylinder. I had gloves on so I was able to"fondle" the rear end. The knocks are substatial enough to shake the back end though.

    It stops as soon as I remove the load, such as lowering the mower deck to the down position.

    Apparently that is where the air is trapped.

  • Jason Smith
    4 years ago

    This is my first time on here, so I don't exactly know how to post so here goes.

    My JD-425 has a flooding problem. Sometimes it runs ok, and sometimes not. When I turn on the ignition, the fuel pump starts (as normal) and I can usually start it. Then, after running for a while, it begins flooding. This is between 15 minutes and half an hour most of the time. I can keep it running if I go full throttle and have the tractor under load, like mowing grass, but there is so much gas entering the carb that there is a bit of black smoke as well.

    If I stop it and remove the air cleaner, and look into the carb, there is gas everywhere.

    Here is what I did so far...

    The carb was new 3 years ago. But I removed it, and took it apart (did this 3 times). Each time I took it apart and put it back together, I know I did it right because the machine started and ran as noted above. I thought it just might be plugged or something. The first time I took it apart I also replaced the electric solenoid valve, just to be sure. And I know it works, because I saw it operating with the carb disassembled. Then, I thought it might be that the float valve was leaking or perhaps the floats had a hole and was full of gas. All was good. When the carb was back together, I blew into the fuel hose when the carb was full of gas and proved that the float valve was working. Hmmm. There is a manual in-line fuel shutoff valve, so what I did was throttle it back so that it would take 30 seconds to to let about an ounce of fuel out. Full blast, the pump actually pumps a lot of fuel. This time, I was able to keep the machine from flooding too bad. And was able to mow the 1 acre of grass I have. Today, however was different. It ran for about 5 minutes, then began to act up. I turned it off, removed the air cleaner and looked into the carb. When I turn the ignition switch on, (not engaging the starter) I can see tons of gas coming out of every carb orifice, flooding into the engine gas everywhere. This is without the engine running. The only thing I can come up with is that the fuel pump for some unknown reason has too much pressure behind it.

    Another wierd thing is that when I turn a sharp corner, under the flooding condition, the flooding gets noticably worse.

    Any ideas anyone? Is there a pressure regulator somewhere in the fuel pump line?


    Thanks.

  • bill_g_wisconsin
    4 years ago

    Mine acted that way when the air filter was plugged. It would also smoke, and backfire when I shut it off.

    I had an old International Scout that had a problem, and killed every time I turned left. It turned out to be a couple of loose bolts holding the carb body down, and it would tip when I turned left. It was the opposite problem of yours, in that it would suck air under the carb and kill because it was too lean. It really had me buffaloed, because it would kill every time I turned into the parking lot when I got to work (it was my only left turn), and kill at all the other turns on the way home.

    Any chance that you have o-rings and / or gaskets damaged by ethanol?

  • Larry Skiye
    2 years ago

    I got a 1999 425 all wheel steer and when I turn my rear wheel wobble. Any ideas.

  • tomplum
    2 years ago

    Don't turn? Actually if a good inspection doesn't show anything from the rear steering shaft back, verify that your differential lock is fully disengaging.