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  1. #1
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    Apr 2009
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    Fenton, MI
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    1995 CC 1864 Hydro

    Default 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    I have a model 1864 Cub Cadet with a Kohler CH18 engine that I知 having power loss issues with. Here are the details:

    - Bought used in 2002. Ran great with NO problems until about 6 weeks ago.
    - Power loss coincided with the replacement of the carburetor solenoid (perhaps just coincidental). (Previous owner had ground down the pintle on the old fuel shutoff solenoid. This is used to stop the flow of fuel to the carburetor jet to prevent backfiring when shutting down the engine.
    - New solenoid appears to operate fine. Can see it working when looking down into the open carburetor fuel bowl.
    - Power loss coincided with the removal and reinstallation of the fuel tank (perhaps just coincidental). (Same time as carburetor solenoid replacement.)
    - Rebuilt the carburetor - no improvement.
    - Rebult the fuel pump - no improvement.
    - Replaced the fuel filter (3 times) - no improvement
    - Thinking maybe there was water in the fuel, I flushed out the entire fuel system; replaced old fuel with fresh fuel no improvement. Replaced old fuel lines with new at the same time no improvement.
    - Sometimes the power loss occurs immediately upon starting. Sometimes not until after a couple of laps around the yard.
    - It will start and idle OK, but as soon as the engine sees a load, it loses power making it almost impossible to mow (or anything else for that matter).
    - Engine still runs, just at a reduced power output and does not backfire or misfire.
    - Sometimes the power goes in and out like someone is flipping a switch. Loss of power behavior is very erratic.

    Is it possible the coil is going bad? Would that produce these kinds of symptoms?
    Ken
    ____________________________________
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro (145-684-100)
    46" GT 3-blade mower deck (190-321-100)
    46" Triple Rear Bagger Grass Catcher (190-335-100)
    45" Two-stage snow blower (190-551-100)
    10 Cu. Ft. Utility Cart (192-368a-100)

  2. #2
    Platinum Member OldMachinist's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    637
    Location
    Southwest Illinois

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    It's possible the governor linkage or spring was reassembled wrong or the governor linkage is just sticking.
    2006 Cub Cadet Z-Force50
    Agco Allis 1616H
    1974 SearsGT18 with 3 point,48"deck,Haban sickle mower and front dozer blade

    2000 Bobcat 453F with steel tracks
    1954 Ford860 with front end loader, 5' brushhog
    1952 Allis Chalmers CA with Woods L59 mower
    1947 Case SC
    1998 Honda ACTY 4WD mini truck
    And too many other small engine tools to list

  3. #3
    Member
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    Apr 2009
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    Location
    Fenton, MI
    Tractor
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    The governor has never been disconnected and operates the same way it's always operated since the day I got it. This failure SEEMS to be fuel related, but I know the fuel is now good. Of the three things needed to make power (air, fuel, spark), I know it's getting plenty of air and flenty of good fuel, so that's why I'm suspecting the coil.

    Does anyone know if a failing coil (ignition module) can create these symptoms as it's going?
    Ken
    ____________________________________
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro (145-684-100)
    46" GT 3-blade mower deck (190-321-100)
    46" Triple Rear Bagger Grass Catcher (190-335-100)
    45" Two-stage snow blower (190-551-100)
    10 Cu. Ft. Utility Cart (192-368a-100)

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    666

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    If not done already, might try a new set of plugs - one of 'em may be breaking down and not be firing under load.
    Also, for addt'l help here's a link to a service manual for that engine:

    http://www.kohlerengines.com/onlinec.../tp_2428_b.pdf

  5. #5
    Member
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    Apr 2009
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    Location
    Fenton, MI
    Tractor
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    Brand new plugs (changed at the same time as the new carburetor solenoid).

    Thanks for the link to the Kohler service manual, but I've been all through it and it doesn't help with the symptoms I have.

    I'm hoping that someone can tell me what happens to a coil when it's dying.
    Last edited by kruss77; 06-29-2009 at 01:08 PM.
    Ken
    ____________________________________
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro (145-684-100)
    46" GT 3-blade mower deck (190-321-100)
    46" Triple Rear Bagger Grass Catcher (190-335-100)
    45" Two-stage snow blower (190-551-100)
    10 Cu. Ft. Utility Cart (192-368a-100)

  6. #6
    Silver Member Dave01's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    162
    Location
    NH

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    I agree with you that its most likely an ignition problem. Have you removed both spark plugs, grounded them, and cranked the engine to look for spark? The power loss you describe could be one cylinder cutting in and out, they run surprisingly smoothly on 1 cylinder, just lack power.

    You certainly can have an ignition problem that comes and goes, might get worse with heat. The "power coming in and out like flipping a switch" is the key. A few other things I'd try - when you lose power, pull one plug wire at a time and see if one makes it die, the other makes no change, to isolate which cylinder is firing. Then, run for a minute that way (during the power loss cycle) and shut down, quickly pull the plugs and see if one is wet, one dry. That way, if you isolate the problem cylinder, and also see that the plug is wet, you'll know its ignition and not fuel related.

    I hope this helps, and good luck.
    CC 1864 w/48" GT deck, CC 2084 w/54" deck, CC 3204 w/48" GT deck

  7. #7
    Member
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    Fenton, MI
    Tractor
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave01 View Post
    I agree with you that its most likely an ignition problem...
    BINGO! It was an ignition problem. As I'd mentioned previously, I'd gone through just about everything else that produces similar symptoms with no luck. Figuring I only had one thing left to replace, I pulled the motor this weekend, replaced both coils, and viola: problem resolved! (I also found a bare wire leading to the coil who's insulation had obviously been chewed off by a critter -see photo. I repaired that as well.)

    Thanks to all for their advice!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -img_2893sm-jpg  
    Ken
    ____________________________________
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro (145-684-100)
    46" GT 3-blade mower deck (190-321-100)
    46" Triple Rear Bagger Grass Catcher (190-335-100)
    45" Two-stage snow blower (190-551-100)
    10 Cu. Ft. Utility Cart (192-368a-100)

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    44
    Location
    Fenton, MI
    Tractor
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro

    Default Re: 1864 - Kohler CH18 Power Loss

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave01 View Post
    The power loss you describe could be one cylinder cutting in and out, they run surprisingly smoothly on 1 cylinder, just lack power.
    That's the weirdest thing about it: the motor ran smoothly (no backfiring, no coughing or sputtering), it just lost power.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave01 View Post
    You certainly can have an ignition problem that comes and goes, might get worse with heat.
    It did get worse with heat: I mowed one day when the temp was around 65* outside and it ran fine the whole time. The next week it was around 78* when I mowed and as soon as the motor reached operating temperature it lost power.
    Ken
    ____________________________________
    1995 CC 1864 Hydro (145-684-100)
    46" GT 3-blade mower deck (190-321-100)
    46" Triple Rear Bagger Grass Catcher (190-335-100)
    45" Two-stage snow blower (190-551-100)
    10 Cu. Ft. Utility Cart (192-368a-100)

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