Question about Craftsman 42 in. Deck 19.5hp Lawn Tractor

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Engine won't crank on a 18.5hp 4000. I checked mechanical interlocks, charged battery and put in fresh gas. New carb and fuel lines put in last year. When I turn the key, there is a click and the ammeter registers negative (-5), but nothing else happens. Over the last few weeks, problem seems intermittent. When it cranks, no problem, but now it won't crank. Any help is appreciated. Note that I am NOT a mechanic - the last time I changed a spark plug was 30 years ago!

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The starter solenoid is most likely the clicking you hear. It has contacts inside which go bad. These are about $10 and easily replaced. Just follow the + battery cable and it will lead you to the solenoid.

Posted on Jun 05, 2010

Testimonial: "I was thinking the same thing (or maybe the coil, but it has been so long since I worked on my first car that it is hard to remember - I will give it a try. "

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85 chevy 2500 5.7L fuel gauge stopped working and truck died. Fuel pump was replaced 3 months ago


Make sure battery has a full charge and battery connections all good. Have a helper crank it while you visually check for spark at the spark plugs. Does distributor turn when you crank it? If spark everywhere, check fuel. If you have a carb, mechanical fuel pump, sometimes you can take fuel supply line loose from carb, aim into container, bump the engine, see if gas comes out, if no gas have to back track. If there is gas, take the air horn off carb, depending on the carb, you may be able to remove air horn w/o removing carb, see if any gas in float bowl, if no gas, maybe you need a carb kit?
Any vehicle needs fuel--spark--compression, right amount at the right time.

Nov 28, 2016 | Chevrolet 2500 Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

120john deere wont start seems like its not getting fuel will start withquick start


More and better information will help you get quicker and better answers. I will assume you are asking about a JD LA120 or D120 or L120 or perhaps even an X120. However, these models do not have fuel injectors.

Many things to consider but, let's try the simple things. You didn't say, so I am going to assume the mower is at least newish, not 30 years old. Let's say you have less than 300 hours on the engine. Let's further assume it worked last summer, or last week, but now it's acting up. Let's also verify the battery is in good shape and fully charged.

A mechanically functional (meaning all the internal parts are working, i.e. pistons, valves, etc) engine requires 3 things, air, fuel, spark. So the quickest way to start your diagnostics is to remove the cover over the air filter and then remove the air filter. I do not recommend spraying Quick Start.

  1. remove air filter
  2. put throttle on fast run (do not choke)
  3. pour an ounce or two of fresh gas into the carburetor
  4. crank engine (15 to 20 seconds, rest to cool the starter, repeat 3 times if it does not fire at first).
Removing the air filter and placing the throttle at full speed, no choke, eliminates the "air" question. Dumping in the fuel eliminated all fuel related questions. What's left? Spark. If the engine fires and runs a bit, then dies, you have eliminated the spark question. The engine started so Spark and Air are good; you have to track down a fuel problem.

If the engine does not fire, you have eliminated the Air & Fuel questions; you must tract down a Spark problem.

Tracking down fuel problems.
  1. Make sure there is plenty of fresh fuel in tank.
  2. Remove fuel line from filter and remove the filter, gas should pour out of the hose coming from the tank. If it does not, remove gas tank cap. If fuel flows now, you need to unclog the cap vent or replace the cap. If the fuel still does not flow then blow air from the filter end of the hose back up through fuel line to blow out blockage inside the gas tank. Once you have fuel flowing out the line to the filter, PUT ON A FRESH FILTER. Try cranking the engine. If it still does not start move on to the carburetor.
  3. Note: many systems have a fuel shut off solenoid. This is a small black cylinder on the bottom of the carburetor. It has two wires running to it. It should make an audible click when you turn the key on.
  4. NOTE: if battery voltage drops below 9 volts when cranking or while the engine is running, the fuel solenoid will not function. That means the engine will not start or will die soon after starting. So check your battery voltage before, during, and after cranking. If the battery voltage is good before but drops below 9 volts while cranking this is generally a sign the battery has one or more bad cells. Replace the battery. If the battery is in fact good and the voltage is still dropping you may have a bad starter motor and it is drawing to much amperage.
  5. Ck to see that the carburetor bowl is full of fuel, if not...you may have to remove, disassemble and clean the carb at this point.
Tracking down Spark problems.
  1. verify battery fully charged.
  2. verify the fuel cutoff solenoid clicks when you turn the key switch
  3. get fresh spark plugs and verify gap
  4. install plugs and crank.Perhaps verify spark with a spark testor
If these simple steps do not solve the spark problem, you have a Spark problem that moves into the arena of complex. You will need to check coil gap and coil performance. If it still doesn't start you will need to diagnose the electrical system for wiring and safety switch problems, key switch problems, fuses, etc.

Once you get it running be sure to replace the Air Filter with a new one.

These simple steps solve most starting and running questions and problems.

Mar 10, 2015 | Garden

1 Answer

Cold start will run short time then die battery not strong enough to realy spin moter


Many things to consider but, let's try the simple things. You didn't say, so I am going to assume the mower is at least newish, not 30 years old. Let's say you have less than 300 hours on the engine. Let's further assume it worked last summer, or last week, but now it's acting up. Let's also verify the battery is in good shape and fully charged.

A mechanically functional (meaning all the internal parts are working, i.e. pistons, valves, etc) engine requires 3 things, air, fuel, spark. So the quickest way to start your diagnostics is to remove the cover over the air filter and then remove the air filter. I do not recommend spraying Quick Start.
  1. remove air filter
  2. put throttle on fast run (do not choke)
  3. pour an ounce or two of fresh gas into the carburetor
  4. crank engine (15 to 20 seconds, rest to cool the starter, repeat 3 times if it does not fire at first).
Removing the air filter and placing the throttle at full speed, no choke, eliminates the "air" question. Dumping in the fuel eliminated all fuel related questions. What's left? Spark. If the engine fires and runs a bit, then dies, you have eliminated the spark question. The engine started so Spark and Air are good; you have to track down a fuel problem.

If the engine does not fire, you have eliminated the Air & Fuel questions; you must tract down a Spark problem.

Tracking down fuel problems.
  1. Make sure there is plenty of fresh fuel in tank.
  2. Remove fuel line from filter and remove the filter, gas should pour out of the hose coming from the tank. If it does not, remove gas tank cap. If fuel flows now, you need to unclog the cap vent or replace the cap. If the fuel still does not flow then blow air from the filter end of the hose back up through fuel line to blow out blockage inside the gas tank. Once you have fuel flowing out the line to the filter, PUT ON A FRESH FILTER. Try cranking the engine. If it still does not start move on to the carburetor.
  3. Note: many systems have a fuel shut off solenoid. This is a small black cylinder on the bottom of the carburetor. It has two wires running to it. It should make an audible click when you turn the key on.
  4. NOTE: if battery voltage drops below 9 volts when cranking or while the engine is running, the fuel solenoid will not function. That means the engine will not start or will die soon after starting. So check your battery voltage before, during, and after cranking. If the battery voltage is good before but drops below 9 volts while cranking this is generally a sign the battery has one or more bad cells. Replace the battery. If the battery is in fact good and the voltage is still dropping you may have a bad starter motor and it is drawing to much amperage.
  5. Ck to see that the carburetor bowl is full of fuel, if not...you may have to disassemble and clean the carb at this point.
Tracking down Spark problems.
  1. verify battery fully charged.
  2. verify the fuel cutoff solenoid clicks when you turn the key switch
  3. get fresh spark plugs and verify gap
  4. install plugs and crank.Perhaps verify spark with a spark testor
If these simple steps do not solve the spark problem, you have a Spark problem that moves into the arena of complex. You will need to check coil gap and coil performance. If it still doesn't start you will need to diagnose the electrical system for wiring and safety switch problems, key switch problems, fuses, etc.

Once you get it running be sure to replace the Air Filter with a new one.

These simple steps solve most starting and running questions and problems.

Mar 10, 2015 | Garden

2 Answers

My John Deer riding Lawn mower will start and run for a few minutes then it quits and it won't restart. Could you help me with what it could be. My husband is ready to take the hammer to it


try starting it when it stops squirt some starting fluid in it try to start if it starts bad carb rebiuld it if not bad valve seat have to take to shop to get fixed

Oct 10, 2014 | Garden

2 Answers

My engine will not start its a 24hp. briggs


cranks no start ???
or no crank at all ???
2 different problems
but if it cranks, spray some carb cleaner in the air filter housing.
yes it starts ??? fuel problem
no ??? no spark

Aug 30, 2014 | Garden

2 Answers

My d100 will not start


Check for good , strong spark. Take spark plug out and ground the outer core of the plug to the engine. Hold the plug with a pair of insulated pliers. Have someone crank the engine while you observe for a good strong blue spark. If the spark looks nice and bluish, then next would be to clean the carburetor. I suggest trying a "quick clean before taking the carburetor bowl off. Take spray carburetor cleaner and spray inside the carb throat with the air cleaner off. Also take about 1/2 can/bottle of fuel line injection cleaner and put it in the gas tank. Then try starting the mower. May sure the gas in the tank is fresh.

Jun 20, 2014 | John Deere Garden

1 Answer

I HAVE FUEL, COMPRECION AND GOOD SPARK, BUT WHEN A CRANK THE ENGINE IT TUNS BUT IT WONT RUN,


Many things to consider but, let's try the simple things. You didn't say, so I am going to assume the mower is at least newish, not 30 years old. Let's say you have less than 300 hours on the engine. Let's further assume it worked last summer, or last week, but now it's acting up. Let's also verify the battery is in good shape and fully charged.

A mechanically functional (meaning all the internal parts are working, i.e. pistons, valves, etc) engine requires 3 things, air, fuel, spark. So the quickest way to start your diagnostics is to remove the cover over the air filter and then remove the air filter. I do not recommend spraying Quick Start.
  1. remove air filter
  2. put throttle on fast run (do not choke)
  3. pour an ounce or two of fresh gas into the carburetor
  4. crank engine (15 to 20 seconds, rest to cool the starter, repeat 3 times if it does not fire at first).
Removing the air filter and placing the throttle at full speed, no choke, eliminates the "air" question. Dumping in the fuel eliminated all fuel related questions. What's left? Spark. If the engine fires and runs a bit, then dies, you have eliminated the spark question. The engine started so Spark and Air are good; you have to track down a fuel problem.

If the engine does not fire, you have eliminated the Air & Fuel questions; you must tract down a Spark problem.

Tracking down fuel problems.
  1. Make sure there is plenty of fresh fuel in tank.
  2. Remove fuel line from filter and remove the filter, gas should pour out of the hose coming from the tank. If it does not, remove gas tank cap. If fuel flows now, you need to unclog the cap vent or replace the cap. If the fuel still does not flow then blow air from the filter end of the hose back up through fuel line to blow out blockage inside the gas tank. Once you have fuel flowing out the line to the filter, PUT ON A FRESH FILTER. Try cranking the engine. If it still does not start move on to the carburetor.
  3. Note: many systems have a fuel shut off solenoid. This is a small black cylinder on the bottom of the carburetor. It has two wires running to it. It should make an audible click when you turn the key on.
  4. NOTE: if battery voltage drops below 9 volts when cranking or while the engine is running, the fuel solenoid will not function. That means the engine will not start or will die soon after starting. So check your battery voltage before, during, and after cranking. If the battery voltage is good before but drops below 9 volts while cranking this is generally a sign the battery has one or more bad cells. Replace the battery. If the battery is in fact good and the voltage is still dropping you may have a bad starter motor and it is drawing to much amperage.
  5. Ck to see that the carburetor bowl is full of fuel, if not...you may have to disassemble and clean the carb at this point.
Tracking down Spark problems.
  1. verify battery fully charged.
  2. verify the fuel cutoff solenoid clicks when you turn the key switch
  3. get fresh spark plugs and verify gap
  4. install plugs and crank.Perhaps verify spark with a spark testor
If these simple steps do not solve the spark problem, you have a Spark problem that moves into the arena of complex. You will need to check coil gap and coil performance. If it still doesn't start you will need to diagnose the electrical system for wiring and safety switch problems, key switch problems, fuses, etc.

Once you get it running be sure to replace the Air Filter with a new one.

These simple steps solve most starting and running questions and problems.

Feb 11, 2014 | John Deere 22HP VTwin 48" Riding Mower

2 Answers

Craftsman YT 4000 Won't Start


Did you check for "spark" at the plug? Check fuel filter ( maybe plugged up ". How fresh is the gas?

Nov 10, 2013 | Craftsman YT 4000 42" Briggs Stratton 24...

2 Answers

MTD 242-641-000 will crank but not run. I spray engine start and it will run for a few seconds


The problem is FUEL STARVATION [no fuel getting to the combustion chamber (cylinder)] which could be caused by one or more of several things:
  • NO fuel in the tank,
  • blockage of the fuel line from the tank to the carburetor [carb],
  • blockage of the fuel filter [if so equipped],
  • a "GUMMED-UP" carb is one of the most common causes IF the engine was allowed to just SIT idle without running over the winter season, OR
  • without EMPTYING ALL FUEL from the tank and running the engine dry" [until it stops which means all fuel has been removed from the tank, the fuel lines, filter, AND the CARB.].
The fact that the engine runs when "engine start," or even a small amount of gasoline, is sprayed into the carb throat allows the engine to run momentarily PROVES that fuel IS NOT getting THROUGH the carb!

Gasoline has a BAD tendency to evaporate over LONG STORAGE intervals, AND LEAVE A RESIDUE called "GUM," and some call it varnish.

Regardless of name, the gum or varnish solidifies in all of the extremely TINY passages [called GALLERIES] in the carb and thus even a full tank of fresh fuel cannot get through the carb to the engine!!!!!.

The "fix" for this is removal of the carb from the engine, for a complete overhaul:
  • Full dis-assembly of the carb,
  • proper soaking of the carb in CARB CLEANER [available at most auto parts stores],
  • and reassembly of the carb USING a NEW "overhaul gasket kit."
The other option is to REPLACE the gummed-up carb with a new one!!!!!

AND, IN THE FUTURE, DO NOT STORE the mower for long periods WITHOUT FIRST draining ALL fuel from the thank, AND THEN starting the mower with the fuel remaining in the carb, and allowing it to run UNTIL it quits.

This means that there is no fuel left in the system to gum it up!!!!!

Sep 11, 2013 | Mtd Garden

1 Answer

John Deere D140 Engine will not turn over.


Important details
Does it turn over/crank well?
Did you check to ensure you have fuel and that it's getting to the carb? (you can simply pull the hose off the carb, and crank the engine holding a little glass under the hose to see if gas pumps out)
Did you check the fuel is not rotten (it should be clear and smell like gas at the gas pump, if it is orange or has a bad smell it needs to be replaced)
Did you check the spark?
Did you check for water in the tank? This looks like little bubbles floating on the bottom of the tank because the water and gas don't mix and the water sinks. Any water at all will contaminate the fuel. You will have to drain the float bowl, the fuel lines, and the tank, dry them and put in fresh fuel.
Did you clean the carb float bowl? If the fuel you by has ANY ethanol content and the tractor sits more than a few weeks without running it is very common to get gunk build up in the carb that will block the jets and keep it from running. carefully cleaning it can fix this.
Tip, do not let carb cleaner get on any rubber seals as they will swell and not fit properly anymore. (or just by new seals)
Check these and repost findings if it doesn't solve your problems, good luck!

Apr 24, 2013 | Garden

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