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900 engine won't start


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#1 SgtMoonracer ONLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2016 - 07:04 AM

So it finally snowed enough to break out the plow yesterday... not that I'm complaining.  The 900 fired right up even after having sat in the enclosed trailer/shed for a month or so without starting.

 

I plowed snow for about 35 minutes, then backed the tractor into the garage.  An hour or so later I went out to move the tractor so the wife could park in the garage, and it wouldn't start.  No noise, no engine turn over, nothing.  The lights are bright when I turn them on, and putting a set of jumper cables on it did nothing.

 

The engine on this is a 10D.  It has a brand new battery.  Is there anything anyone is familiar with that could be causing this before I break out the manual?  I'm going to bed (night shift this month), and wont get a chance to putz with it until later today at the earliest, but if anyone has any suggestions, I'm all ears!

 

Thanks in advance.



#2 fonz3482 ONLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2016 - 08:11 AM

If you were playing in the snow, my guess is water got in somewhere and caused a poor connection, electrical issue or possibly froze up the starter generator? Can you spin the starter generator by hand? If it wont turn over at all, I would start there and look for loose, broken or corroded wires while I was at it.


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#3 Bolens 1000 ONLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2016 - 08:11 AM

Are you still using the OEM push button starter or do you have a keyswitch in there with that being a TR10D engine?

Sounds like a short somewhere or lose connection


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#4 Chubien ONLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2016 - 08:47 AM

When I bought my 900 it was lifeless like you describe and it was due to the generator brushes making poor contact, they were basically seized. Spin the generator a 1/2 turn by hand, it may catch if that's your problem. Or gently tap the generator with a hammer while having the starter button engaged.


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#5 SgtMoonracer ONLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2016 - 12:36 PM

Thanks for the replies.  

 

Fonz, the snow on the ground was not heavy, only about 3 inches, and it was not snowing much if at all when I was plowing. Certainly still could have frozen something I suppose.  I didn't think to try to spin the generator.

 

Doc, it starts with a pushbutton... it has a key that I turn on, then push the button. 

 

Chubien, I'll try the tapping, too if the spin doesn't work.

 

 

Update... made it to the garage.  The generator spins.  A hammer doesn't seem to do anything.  I tried a bigger hammer, still no go. 

 

It's still well below freezing, so if something froze yesterday, it's still frozen.


Edited by SgtMoonracer, January 13, 2016 - 01:07 PM.


#6 Bruce Dorsi OFFLINE  

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Posted January 13, 2016 - 03:37 PM

It is possible that the push button switch has failed.  ....You can jump across the switch terminals to test the switch.

 

A jumper cable from battery Positive terminal to starter Armature (large) terminal will test starter.

 

If neither procedure allows the engine to crank, hook a jumper cable from battery Negative to ground at the starter frame.  ...Repeat above two steps.

 

If still nothing, your problem is most likely inside the starter.


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#7 SgtMoonracer ONLINE  

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Posted January 16, 2016 - 04:13 AM

I tried Bruce's suggestion to jump the battery to the large post on the spare generator and it made a wild noise but did nothing else. I also tried jumping the contacts on the push button without success.  I had a second starter/generator that came with the tractor when I bought it and I had switched the one that had been on the tractor with the spare some time ago prior to replacing the battery.  The spare generator was of unknown origin, but it worked.

 

I decided to put the original back on after I tested the spare.  The original generator turned the engine over, slowly.  I put the battery charger on overnight, and tried starting it again today. It's again turning slowly, but after about 4-5 seconds of cranking with the pushbutton, the smaller terminal on the generator starts smoking.

 

I'm thinking I have two bad starter/generators.  I have a local shop I'll try to visit Monday and see if they can rebuild one.

 

Thanks all for your help (again).



#8 Chubien ONLINE  

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Posted January 16, 2016 - 08:53 AM

It's actually really easy to fix these generators if the bearings and armature are still good (and they usually are). I made it standard maintenance on my tractors to opens them up and clean them. I would bet the spring loaded brushes are seized and not making contact. I takes me about 30 minutes to disassemble and clean everything and put it back together.
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#9 SgtMoonracer ONLINE  

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Posted January 18, 2016 - 08:10 PM

Final update for this problem.  Generator #2, (that actually started and ran the tractor) is shot.  The brushes came out in pieces, the armature is shot, and there were grounds across several parts that weren't supposed to be grounding.  The shop guy said to hang onto the various parts, because it had a new end on it and he said those frequently warp or bend.

 

The generator that was on it originally was good.  Chubien was correct.  The brushes were almost new, new connectors inside, but tons of carbon dust and one brush not making good contact just from a build-up of gunk.  Something shorted and caused a magnetic pull when the shop guy tested it, but blowing the carbon out of it seemed to fix that.

 

Re-installed it after the clean-up and it fired right up.  Not bad for a $5 inspection charge.

 

Now I just need to get either a new tire or slime the left front one as it decided now's a good time to not hold air at all.

 

Thanks all!


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#10 Bolens 1000 ONLINE  

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Posted January 18, 2016 - 08:25 PM

Glad you got your problem solved, cant you just put a tube in the tire?



#11 Chubien ONLINE  

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Posted January 19, 2016 - 08:26 AM

Excellent, I bought a rebuild kit for these generators a while back, the kit is just brushes and bearings, and have yet to use it - cleanup, some polishing and lubricating the brush springs usually does the trick. I have come across one which had the armature worn pretty bad but strangely it's my best one and cranks faster than all the others.


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#12 SgtMoonracer ONLINE  

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Posted January 19, 2016 - 11:55 AM

I can put a tube in it... It's the older 4.00 x 8 tire, and I might eventually end up getting two new 6.5 x 8 tires and putting them on instead. I have two wheels and tires from the 1050 parts tractor that actually hold air but the tires are shot.

Need to get something done before it snows this weekend!




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