Question about Craftsman 20 hp 42 in. Deck Lawn Tractor - CA Model

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My mower won't do anything when trying to crank it. I had this problem a few week ago, i washed the deck free of debris, charged the battery and it cranked. I think that the safety switch for the blade engagment is bad. how do i check it?

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Remove the safety switch - place a voltage meter on both sides - if it is working - you should get current - if not - toss it get another and install.
Start engine Mow lawn.

Posted on May 06, 2010

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Pull the wires off the safety switch and plug a jumper into the 2 wires. then try to start it.

Posted on May 01, 2010

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1 Answer

Why can' I t get mower to do anything when trying to crank it over?


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Not necessarily the battery can be weak with a small internal failure and can cause the issue of shorting out and not staying charged. This is very common on small batteries for these mowers. The replacement batteries you get at the hardware stores are the worst culprits for going bad after just a year or 2. The main battery that comes with the tractor are usually much stouter than the replacements. Before we tear intot he charging system I would suggest a new battery or hook up a temporary car battery if you have one to see if the guage acts up, or if you have a volt ohm meter test the charging system by reading the battery as it is running. It should be between 13 and 14 volts if it is worrking correct. You can also use the old stanby tried and tested method of pulling the positve cable off the battery after the mower has been started and see if it stays running. This will give us a base to proceed from. Let me know what you have tried and what you find.

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When I crank mower , blades engage when I don't have them engaged!


The belt engaging mechanism is remaining partially engaged. Check the deck for debris and clean it off really good. Retry. If still occuring you may need to remove the deck to see if there is still debris there or to check for corrosion. With the deck removed, if all the debris is cleaned up and with and you can manually move the tensioning mechanism and see what the hang up is, it might just take a shot of wd40 and moving it by hand a few times to clear it up. If it is a rust thing then you are going to want to keep it lubricated and cleaned to maintain free operation. You should not have to remove the deck every time to lube it, you should be able to get the lube sprayed into there by reaching under once you learn just where your deck needs it.

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1 Answer

No power


I think you should check the charging system. You said you replaced the battery a few weeks ago. Even with the charging system not working, the battery might have enough power for a dozen or more start-ups; but using the lights may have drained what power was left. Get or borrow a battery charger and charge your battery. If mower then seems to be working fine, measure the voltage across the battery when the mower engine is running at normal speed (not idling). It should be 13.5 volts or more if the charging system is working. 12 volts or less means it's probably not working. Either test or replace the regulator/rectifier. Please rate me if you think this helped, thanks!

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1 Answer

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