• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Basic triage on a riding mower

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Basic triage on a riding mower

    Last summer I bought a used riding mower. Almost immediately thereafter, I also bought a tractor (yes, windfall summer!). With the farm to-do list at the time, we proceeded to work with the tractor pretty much exclusively.

    All I accomplished with the riding mower was breaking the belt that runs the mower by charging headlong into some resistant weeds. Now, after a winter of being ignored, it not only has a broken belt, it doesn't start.

    I doubt a repair person would make a house, er, barn call? I'd like to get it running enough to ride it out front to my truck or trailer so I can bring it somewhere. Of course it would be great if the battery just needed to charge and I was back to where I left it, just needing the belt.

    How does one jump start a riding mower? Is that even possible? I picture blowing it to smithereens. I know very little about motor vehicles of any type and when you add electricity I have both fear AND ignorance. So what should I do with this large paperweight to get it functional again?
    Shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you? You are at your very best when things are worst.

  • #2
    Originally posted by JoZ View Post

    I doubt a repair person would make a house, er, barn call?

    How does one jump start a riding mower? Is that even possible? I picture blowing it to smithereens. I know very little about motor vehicles of any type and when you add electricity I have both fear AND ignorance.
    Our nearest John Deere dealer makes house calls. They were here last week to service our mower. Most tractor dealerships do make house calls.

    You jumpstart a riding mower just like you jumpstart a car. I've done it several times . I'm quite forgetful about turning the key all the way off...

    Good luck!
    "We need a pinned ears icon." -MysticOakRanch


    • #3
      Those little batteries last a few years at best. Carry the old one to TSC, and turn it in to buy a new one. They'll give you 10 bucks for the old one.


      • #4
        Basic Triage:
        1. Clean, fresh fuel: replace the old fuel from last year.
        2. Air: make sure your air filter is vaguely clean.
        3. Battery: as Tom says. Notorious for short life, needing a frequent replacement or jump.
        4. Spark: Assuming this is a gas mower, not a diesel: remove and replace the spark plug. Buy two when you are at the repair shop.
        5. The two most useful tools on the farm: air compressor for tires, and a battery charger for batteries.

        Lastly if you purchased a mower with a OHV Kohler engine(Like a Craftsman) you may need to have the repair shop adjust your valve lash. These high compression engines have a precompression stroke pressure relief as part of their 4 cycles. As the engine cam wears the relief becomes less and less. The little battery is now trying to overcome too much compression and acts like it is very weak or dead. You can cheat this by literally manually turning the engine to just past the compression stroke before turning the key to start so it has some momentum to overcome the high compression...but none of this works without a fresh and charged battery, clean fresh fuel, plug and air filter.


        • #5
          We just had to fix our drive belt on ours( not transmission belt) and it was a PITA.... And we always have to jump our battery after it sits all winter long. We got one of those battery chargers and it works great.

          I am hoping to find someone that can come out and fix my mower at my house, as we cannot get it out of our field to the road( slope is too steep - don't ask how we got it down there!)


          • #6
            Great to know about getting someone out to fix it!


            • #7
              My riding mower gets to visit the Mower Doc almost every Spring.
              He does p/u & deliver for a modest $25.
              At the least he sharpens the blades and gives it a once-over.

              Like you, I am mechanically phobic, so I just let him do it all and the mower runs all Season for me as long as I check oil & keep it full of gas.
              I have replaced belts - PTO & drive - myself and aside from having to crawl around on the ground, not too difficult.

              I have marooned it a couple times when I ran out of gas & once when a wheel shaft broke.
              Just putting it in neutral and pushing (oof!) worked to get it to my driveway for pickup.
              If I had another body to help push, it would have been an easier job, but OldLady me managed to get it done.
              *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
              Steppin' Out 1988-2004
              Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
              Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


              • #8
                I feel your pain. My Zero turn riding mower is down this spring as well. I put in a new battery, but no dice. I'm told there is some kind of fuse I need to check as well, so I'm going to try that. My biggest issue is that I can't push it. Apparently it won't go into neutral unless cranked up. No idea what to do with the bloody thing now except drag it with the tractor, but I'm sure that would ruin more things.
                Rhode Islands are red;
                North Hollands are blue.
                Sorry my thoroughbreds
                Stomped on your roo. Originally Posted by pAin't_Misbehavin' :


                • #9
                  Read the manual on your mower. There's a bypass valve on the transmission somewhere, usually in the form of a lever or handle that needs to be pushed/pulled/turned to disengage the hydraulic loop.

                  If you don't have the manual, go to the manufacturer's website. Many have owner's manuals free for the downloading.
                  The inherent vice of Capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.
                  Winston Churchill


                  • #10
                    We have a small engine repair that picks up for $40. Best $40 I spend each year for tune-ups and the John Deere dealer in Lexington makes house calls.


                    • #11
                      OP, I hear ya. I drive through some pretty harsh weeds on my 12.5 hp Poulan mower and have several times had the stalks of dead dogfennel poke into the mower deck and pop my belt off, so far hasn't broken a belt, but able to fix quite easily.

                      Two days ago right after the drivetrain belt popped off and my farrier helped me fix it, I was mowing and heard a God-awful ruckus from the engine. I blew a piston rod.

                      We towed it in from the pasture behind a truck - slowly and carefully. My tractor mechanic that is just down the road from me is ordering a short block to repair it. $$$ but still cheaper than a new mower.

                      Mower batteries are very cheap and easy to install, if you have to jumpstart it after the mower sat for a year, you might as well just buy a new battery for it.
                      Every man has a right to his opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.
                      Bernard M. Baruch