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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I believe the PTO switch on my mower went out today. I was mowing along, heard the deck cut off. Thought it was the belt. Pushed the switch in to look at the belt. Belt was fine. Pulled the switch out again and nothing.

The dumbness starts when I drove it up to the house and cut it off. I thought I would just get out a couple of wires and jump the switch. So far I haven't been able to do anything. There's only four terminals at the switch, so it can't be that complicated. I was initially going to patch it and go back mowing. But now I would just like to get it cranked and get it back in the shed.

Does anyone have any knowledge on how to at least crank the mower so I can drive it into the shed? Getting the deck on would give me some more options for getting a replacement switch, but I don't know about turning the deck on and not being able to quickly turn it off. Any help would be appreciated.
 

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Dennis, don't know much about a GT275 electrical system, but, one possibility is the battery is run down. If you have a charger, hook it up and see if the battery is accepting a charge.
Sometimes the problem you have is caused by the electric clutch shorting out and drawing down the battery so far that there is not enough juice left for a restart.
There are probably a lot of other possibilities, this is just a place to start. You might need a service manual to diagnose it farther. They are usually expensive, but you will be rewarded many times over on repair savings.
In the meantime, can you just disengage the hydro and push the tractor in the shed? There should be a rod or lever at the rear of the tractor for this and usually it's marked some way.
Hope you find the problem soon and that another GT275 owner can give you more info.

tommyhawk
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Tom,

Thanks for the tip about the electrical. I had to get the jumper cables out to crank it. It ran fine and I mowed for about 10 minutes. Then the deck quit and I drove it back to the house. Cut if off, tried to crank again. Dead. Jumped it off again and left it running for 20-30 minutes. Went out and tried to mow. Deck wouldn't engage. Came back to the barn. Turned it off, tried to crank it again, and it was dead.

What's this you say about the electric clutch shorting out? I don't have a battery charger, but I just bought this battery last summer, so I think it's in good shape. Do you think I'll have to get it charged (it was only reading 11.8V today) back up to 13+V before the mower will start acting right again?
 

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David is right about checking the easy stuff first. This may be long and boring, but hang in there and you will get 'er straightened out.
First thing is to disconnect and clean the battery cables. ALWAYS disconnect the neg. first and reconnect it last. Corrosion is common there, and is a bad thing.
Take the battery to a local auto parts store and have it load tested. Many of them do that as a free service. It may have to be charged to properly test it, I'm not sure. It's possible the battery is shot even though it's only 1 year old. Could be the only problem.
If a GT275 has a red light for the battery charging system and oil pressure, they should both light up with the key on. That assures you the warning lights are working. Both should go out with engine running. If the charging light stays on, there is a problem with the system, wiring, or connections. The electronic ignition on that engine does not need battery power to function.
Once the battery and charging system is known to be working properly, and if the problem still exists, you will then have to find the excessive draw on the battery.
I mentioned the possibility of a failing electric clutch because that is one of the common things that begins to draw too much juice and run a battery down while mowing. The red light, if it has one, should have come on though. The clutch coil is fairly easy to check if you have a volt/ohm meter.
Let us know what's happening with the battery first.
BTW, I never owned a battery charger until I got my first garden tractor in 1974! Still have both of them.

tommyhawk
 

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Dennis,

When you say that it is "dead" do you mean it doesn't do anything when you turn the key or does it click or maybe even turn over a time or two but doesn't start?

11.8V is too low to run on for a long time, but if you don't get the orange battery light when it's running then either your light bulb is burned out or it is charging properly. Jump start it again and check the voltage while it's running ... should be >12.5 volts at least. If it's not then you could have a charging problem ... or as Tom said it could be the clutch pulling more current than the charging system can put out. If it is above 12.5V then your battery is most likely shot. I would still recommend having it load tested though to make sure.

As far as the deck not engaging ... there's a few things it could be. I doubt that the deck is not engaging because of low battery voltage. If it was then every time you tried to engage the deck the engine would try to die and the orange light would come on. You can take your pick on which one to check first but I would start with the PTO switch. I don't know how savy you are with an ohmmeter but this is what you should get at the switch ... in the off position you should only have 0 ohms (aka ... continuity) between the 415 yel/blk and the 706 pur/wht wires. In the on position you should only have continuity between the 2 blue wires ... 755 and 750. I don't know which terminals these correspond to on the switch so you'll have to match them up once you unplug the connector and check it on the switch side. The resistence across the PTO Clutch should be 2.4 - 2.6 Ohms. There is also a PTO Relay on the interlock module behind the dash. If everything else checks out OK then that could be the issue but is unlikely.

By the way ... I do have a GT275 and mine has a similar issue where the deck will just quit once in a while. To remedy I just have to push the switch to off and then back on again. Hasn't failed me yet but I may be on borrowed time. Sounds like a different issue than what you have though.

I'll try to keep checking back to see if you found the issue and give any other assistance that I can. Please keep us posted.

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
All,

I hooked up the jumper cables again Tuesday afternoon from my truck to the mower. It was reading 12.8V. I left it hooked up for about 30 minutes. Went out Thursday and mowed the rest of the yard (probably took about 45 minutes). Never missed a lick.

Maybe it was just the switch and it's fixed now. Maybe it was (and still is) the battery. Thanks to Tom and others for the hint about the battery possibly being dead.
 

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Dennis, If your charging system is working then the battery terminal voltage will read 13.5 - 13.8 volts or so with the engine running at fast idle. A good fully charged battery at rest with the engine off will read 12.5 volts. If your battery voltage drops below 10.5 volts when cranking the engine then the battery is no good. Most auto parts chain stores and Wall-Marts will test a battery for free.
 

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Take 2 of the bolts out of the pulley, loosen the 3rd bolt. The pulley will rotate out of the way enough to get the belt on, and with the 3rd bolt still in, installing it, it will line up easily to start the other 2 bolts.
 

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Steve, there is also an eye bolt you can tighten up to apply more spring pressure to the variator. It is underneath the tractor. Make sure the other spring is there and not broken for the secondary pulley in the rear.
 

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Remove the front button plug from steering pedestal and back off the cap screw so its loose. 3/4 socket with a short extension/ratchet or breaker bar.... whatever.

Position the variable drive lever in notch number five. (Number seven is full forward)

Start engine and be **sure** the variable drive has moved into fast position. You simply can pull up on the clutch pedel.

Shut off engine.

Tighten the cap scew and at same time push down on the bolt like you are attempting to rotate it to the floor. The socket will be in the lowest portion of that hole. This removes slop in the link.

Reinstall that plug.

Start engine and move the speed control back. The clutch pedel will move down. Move the speed control full forward. The clutch pedal will move up.

If all appears good, test drive it. If it slows down all on its own when the lever is full forward, then there is binding on the center sheave (worn out hub and bushing) or the spring is really loose.

My tractor's eye bolt are set to mid point on the threads and they will not slow down when I climb a bit of a hill.

Either way I spell the word pedel (pedle) it is wrong so I hope you can figure it out.
 

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Steven, it's important to change both belts at the same time. They get a little narrower and a little more floppy as they age. If you have the old belt on the front with that new belt on the rear you can have some erratic operation.
 
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