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kthomas62

414-8 Starting System Question

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kthomas62

Hello guys!

 

It's been a while since I posted but have a question about the starting system on my 1988, 414-8 (Model # 31-14K803), and I will do my best to explain my question so it makes sense. For a while, my tractor would fail to get juice to the starter when turning the key to start it but eventually after repeatedly turning the key off and on, it would get juice and start. Recently it's gotten to where I have been having to jump the solenoid and it fires right up, and sometimes after mowing for awhile, would start with the key.

 

So, I thought the solenoid had gone bad so I bought one today (2 post, 1 wire), and installed it. Still the same thing only now it won't start at all with the key, but starts great when I jump the solenoid. Any ideas  / direction as to what to check now? 

 

Thanks in advance. 

 

Kevin 

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gwest_ca

Have a voltmeter?

Check the voltage across the battery posts. Should be at least 12 volts.

Move the red test lead to the small terminal connection on the solenoid. Try to start and you should see the same 12 volts. Will guess it will be much less than 12 volts but if not -----

Move the red test lead to the metal body of the solenoid where it bolts to the engine. Try starting and if you get voltage here you have a bad ground for the solenoid. Try other metal engine parts to confirm as the whole engine ground could be the culprit.

 

If you get low voltage to the small solenoid terminal you have to make sure the ignition switch Bat+ terminal is getting 12 volts. From there the switch sends power to the Solenoid terminal on the ignition switch which goes to the pto switch. With pto OFF the power goes from the pto switch to the clutch pedal switch. Clutch pedal down power is sent to a low oil relay. If the oil level switch is working with enough oil in the engine that switch in the engine closes and powers the magnetic coil in the low oil relay. That closes the relay contacts sending the power from the neutral switch to the small terminal on the solenoid. All those connections need to be clean and tight.

 

When you turn to start if you place your third hand on the low oil relay you should feel it thump when the power gets to it.

 

There are special instructions to remove the low oil switch from the engine if it becomes necessary. Very easy to damage and they are no longer available from Kohler.

 

These wiring diagrams may make more sense than my description. Each circuit has it's own diagram so easier to follow but you still need to find it on the tractor.

Keep that transmission in neutral in case it starts up unexpectedly.

Questions?

 

Garry

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ZXT
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, kthomas62 said:

Hello guys!

 

It's been a while since I posted but have a question about the starting system on my 1988, 414-8 (Model # 31-14K803), and I will do my best to explain my question so it makes sense. For a while, my tractor would fail to get juice to the starter when turning the key to start it but eventually after repeatedly turning the key off and on, it would get juice and start. Recently it's gotten to where I have been having to jump the solenoid and it fires right up, and sometimes after mowing for awhile, would start with the key.

 

So, I thought the solenoid had gone bad so I bought one today (2 post, 1 wire), and installed it. Still the same thing only now it won't start at all with the key, but starts great when I jump the solenoid. Any ideas  / direction as to what to check now? 

 

Thanks in advance. 

 

Kevin 

Hey Kevin. Have you verified that you are getting power to the solenoid from the trigger wire? I'm assuming you aren't, since the new solenoid didn't fix the issue. Next would be to test to see if you're getting 12v out of the ignition switch to that wire with it in the start position. Could very well be a failing ignition switch, or a intermittent safety switch. Ignition switches are cheap enough that I generally keep one on hand just in case. 

 

When you have the key held in the start position, actuate all of the things that have safety switches, for example the PTO lever. If it cranks after fiddling with one of those, you can count on it being a safety switch. 

 

I'm sure someone will be along to post a wiring diagram for it before too long.

 

EDIT: Or right before me! Garry gives great advice.

Edited by ZXT
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kthomas62

Thanks to everyone responding! I will

19 hours ago, gwest_ca said:

Have a voltmeter?

Check the voltage across the battery posts. Should be at least 12 volts.

Move the red test lead to the small terminal connection on the solenoid. Try to start and you should see the same 12 volts. Will guess it will be much less than 12 volts but if not -----

Move the red test lead to the metal body of the solenoid where it bolts to the engine. Try starting and if you get voltage here you have a bad ground for the solenoid. Try other metal engine parts to confirm as the whole engine ground could be the culprit.

 

If you get low voltage to the small solenoid terminal you have to make sure the ignition switch Bat+ terminal is getting 12 volts. From there the switch sends power to the Solenoid terminal on the ignition switch which goes to the pto switch. With pto OFF the power goes from the pto switch to the clutch pedal switch. Clutch pedal down power is sent to a low oil relay. If the oil level switch is working with enough oil in the engine that switch in the engine closes and powers the magnetic coil in the low oil relay. That closes the relay contacts sending the power from the neutral switch to the small terminal on the solenoid. All those connections need to be clean and tight.

 

When you turn to start if you place your third hand on the low oil relay you should feel it thump when the power gets to it.

 

There are special instructions to remove the low oil switch from the engine if it becomes necessary. Very easy to damage and they are no longer available from Kohler.

 

These wiring diagrams may make more sense than my description. Each circuit has it's own diagram so easier to follow but you still need to find it on the tractor.

Keep that transmission in neutral in case it starts up unexpectedly.

Questions?

 

Garry

Thank you Garry!

 

I will see what I can come up with based off your guidance! 

Kevin

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The Tool Crib

I would start with cleaning all connections 

pos and neg. Then go from there

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953 nut

:WRS:

Deferred maintenance (things that should have been done long ago but weren't) is the likely problem.

1028359822_1electrical.jpg.83f6fad930401e6abaaa6ae962d0914f.jpg

 

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kthomas62

Ok, I did some testing / checking this evening. Didn't get real far but here's what I checked. The battery voltage is strong, @ 12+ volts and both post / cables are very clean. There is obviously voltage to one side of the solenoid, but not there other when the key is turned. There is no voltage to the ignition switch at all. I checking the voltage at the single wire on the solenoid while trying to start the engine, and no voltage. 

 

I did wiggle and check several connections to make sure I didn't have any lose wires, and didn't make any difference. I do remember the seat light on the dash flickering before all this started, not sure if that would cause complete power loss at the ignition switch or not.

 

Kevin

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953 nut
12 minutes ago, kthomas62 said:

There is no voltage to the ignition switch at all.

Did you check the fuses and clean the fuse holders? They are under the battery and subject to corrosion.

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kthomas62
20 minutes ago, 953 nut said:

Did you check the fuses and clean the fuse holders? They are under the battery and subject to corrosion.

Hello 953 Nut!

 

I checked the fuses and they are good. One has new connections but I didn't clean the others. 

 

Kevin

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ZXT
43 minutes ago, kthomas62 said:

Hello 953 Nut!

 

I checked the fuses and they are good. One has new connections but I didn't clean the others. 

 

Kevin

Do you have power at the fuses? Check for voltage at each connection on the "small" hot wire (The one that will be connected to the + terminal on the battery or at the solenoid in addition to the main battery cable), and you might be able to narrow down where your problem lies.

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kthomas62
20 hours ago, ZXT said:

Do you have power at the fuses? Check for voltage at each connection on the "small" hot wire (The one that will be connected to the + terminal on the battery or at the solenoid in addition to the main battery cable), and you might be able to narrow down where your problem lies.

I didn't check for power at the fuses but will tomorrow.

 

Thanks! 
Kevin

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kthomas62

Hello all,

 

Just wanted to give a big THANK YOU to all who replied, to point me in the right direction with my issue! I got it fixed today when I got him from work. Turns out the trigger wire had a bad spot in it. Fixed, and now there is power to everything and the mower starts good every time!

Thanks again! 

Kevin

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ZXT
9 minutes ago, kthomas62 said:

Hello all,

 

Just wanted to give a big THANK YOU to all who replied, to point me in the right direction with my issue! I got it fixed today when I got him from work. Turns out the trigger wire had a bad spot in it. Fixed, and now there is power to everything and the mower starts good every time!

Thanks again! 

Kevin

Glad to hear that it was a simple fix! 

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kthomas62
On 7/10/2019 at 5:54 PM, ZXT said:

Glad to hear that it was a simple fix! 

Thanks!

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