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420 Hondeere hard starting issues

1194 Views 17 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  ab318
I have a 91 420 with a 24 horse Honda (22 now). The PO had the local JD dealer install it.
Ever since I got it it cranks over for a while before it fires up. It's a bigger deal now that it's winter and I am worried about it starting at all when it's -30.
My 317 was repowered with a CH18, and had the same issue when I got it. I ended removing the low oil shutdown (it was a engine designed for a generator).
The oil light works on my 420, the funny thing is that if you restart it soon after shutting it down it starts right up. Has anyone had issues with the fuel draining back into the gas tank? Or any other ideas? I also came across someone saying to add the starter improvement kit, but not I have seem to find it.
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Tony: I have a 1988 318 that I put the 24 hp. Honda in. Are you pulling out the choke when it's cold? Define "a while"? Mine cranks about 3-5 seconds if it's cold. Is your battery in good shape? Also ? - why is it now "22"?
I do have the choke pulled out all the way, but not when warm. I tried no choke when it was cold and it didn't make much of a difference.
I think it's closer to 5-10 seconds of turning it over.

They use newer methods for HP rating now. The 24 horse honda are now 22.1 or something like that.
Tony i am having the same problem with my 20 HP honda repower and yes my fuel seams to be going back to the tank after I shut it off. I can see it drain back through clear fuel hose. I also see air bubbles coming up with the gas and engine pulsing at high throttle so i must have a restriction, sucking air somewhere or a venting problem. I will do some more looking tomorrow and get back before i go to work.
Thanks Matthew please let me know what you find. I have class tonight and will not be able to check on mine until tomorrow night.
Did you check if the choke is really totally closed when pulled out all the way.
Mine need also between 3-5 second like Thomas, up to 10 second after sitting for few weeks in the winter.
Even in the summer mine start better with the choke totally closed.
Good point Thomas, I will check on that tonight.
BTW it takes a while even in the summer, seems like it is almost always the same. The odd thing is once it does start I do get a bunch of smoke from the extra fuel. I have noticed that if it's only been a day or two it's more like 10 seconds but if it has been more like 2-3 weeks it may take 20 or more seconds.
I took care of the bubble problem had a small crack in the lower fuel filter no more bubbles. still starts like crud. now i will replace the upper filter tomorrow to see if that helps. while i am at the honda dealer i will try to ask the techs some questions about the starting issue. My problem seems to be a fuel delivery problem. If i run WOT i have a pulsation if i put the choke on about a 1/4 of the way it stops. hopefully its just a fuel filter. I did remove the upper filter and put my thumb over the fuel line and turned over the engine. I didn't feel any suction so i will ask them about the fuel pump.
Choke is all the way closed when I have it all the way pulled out. Took about 12 seconds this time, and I notice it started about 1 second after the oil light when out.
I am going to have to find the manual and see if there is a low oil pressure shutdown on my Honda. I was out plowing the driveway and was a little cold, I will have to pull the side panels off later and look for the oil pressure sender.
Ok I went to the honda dealer today and picked up a fuel filter. While I was there i asked one of the techs about the starting problem. He said carb issues are the #1 problem followed by valve adjustment both causing hard starting. The carb issues usually caused by ethanol or old fuel. He greatly stressed the valve adjustment saying this has been a problem with there v-twins and to make sure i adjust mine. I will be installing the new fuel filter tomorrow and making plans to rebuild carb and adjust valves. I will run after each repair and report back on how it affects the starting issue.
Tony, I ordered the carb kit. It will be a couple of weeks before it arrives so i will post then. keep me informed on what you find please. Thanks Matt
Some engines are wired that they wont start till they have oil pressure or will kill if loose pressure. If there is an oil pressure switch, and its wired to the ignition kill that might be it. On the deere tractors the switch is there just to turn the light on on the dash, not to kill the engine in the event of low oil pressure.
Mike, I believe the Honda engine does have a low oil pressure sensor that will kill the engine. What you mentioned does make sense then if that's the case.
Let me also add with the air temps colder, as well as the oil, it would take this Honda engine longer to pop off. Tony, not sure where you store your tractor during the winter months, but you might also consider synthetic oil and or some type of engine dipstick heater too.
I normally do use synthetic oil in all my JDs but I just bought this one and it was just changed.

I'm going to pull it apart when I get a chance (and a little warmer) to remove the low oil shutdown.
The Honda GX670-TXF and BXF like mine was equipped with the low oil level sensor.
This sensor is wired directly to the ignition kill circuit.
Usually this motor is used for stationary application like generator.
I had to bypass the oil level sensor on mine because the electric clutch disturb the level sensor detection.
I had to replace it on my 318 with the pressure switch.

The GX670-TAF and BAF are equipped with the oil pressure sensor.
I didn't found any electric schematic for those ones.

Usually for repower the most popular Honda 24 is the GX670-BDW.
This one come without the small console with the keyswitch and light,
same for the choke the throttle the oil level sensor and pressure switch.
Usually the pressure switch is added to the kit.
For this one the wiring depend on the kit supplier/builder not Honda.

The pressure switch, when equipped is located under the oil cooler between the oil filter and the red flywheel cover:

The wire can be disconnect or jumped to the motor ground for testing.
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Perfect Andre, that is the exact info I was looking for!
Is this also used for the oil light?
Thanks so much for the info.
Actually on mine, one side of the oil light is connected to a 12v fused.
The other side is connected to the pressure switch.
Everything is like the original wiring with the Onan.
I didn't add any protection to the kill circuit yet but I will add something later.
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