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  1. #1
    Silver Member AL_Josh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    132
    Location
    Mobile, Alabama
    Tractor
    Cub LT 1046, 2000 Honda Rancher, 2004 Carolina Skiff

    Default Break In?

    I have always heard of breaking an engine in. The guys at dealer said just go for it. I read in another post that the throttle should be kept at a moderate speed. till it is broke in. It is a 23 hp Kohler Command. The guys at dealer also said change the oil after 4 to 5 hours. The manual says the oil from the factory is good for 24 hours. I would like for the mower to last me a long time so I want to do what is right.
    Being a new homeowner this is the first mower I have actually bought. It is a LT1046. My first impressions of it are it is an awesome mower with plenty of power (23 hp). I am 6' 4" and I do not have a bit of problems sitting on it. It cuts very nice. I am very pleased with my purchase. I compared many mower in this price range and think I got the most for my money with the Cub.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Break In?

    Definitely refer to your owners' manual, it has the proper break-in times and oil change intervals in there, and I would follow those as opposed to what the dealer is telling you.

  3. #3
    Silver Member MrWiggles2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    168
    Location
    Clarence Center, NY
    Tractor
    2004 Cub Cadet 2180

    Default Re: Break In?

    I totally disagree. My dealer dropped off my first Cub and said do not do what the manual says. If you run it at half throttle, then 3/4 throttle you are doing more damage than you think. A proper way to break in an engine is to not baby it. Start it, raise the throttle to wide open and work it. The rings will seat properly, the engine will pump oil properly and it will last a long time. When I purchased my first Cub, the mechanic went over the entire machine with me. I couldn't understand why he was telling me to do things that were against the owners manual. He said rarely does he work on an engine that is properly broken in. The ones that he sees are the ones that were babied, not broken in correctly, then they fail... and they can fail at 100 hours or more, many times resulting from poor breaking proceedures. Then I thought, do commercial lawn companies break-in equipment. No, they run them W.O. from the word go and get thousands of hours on a motor. The maintenance schedule that I follow is the first 5-10 hours do the first oil change and lube it up. Don't wait until 25 hours, that could be 1/2 the year on the oil that has been sitting in the crankcase becoming more acidic. Then I change the oil every 50 hours or seasonal, whichever. My hydro filter gets changed every 100 hours, per the dealer. I've attached an interesting link that I found on-line about proper break-in. A lot of good points. I have 73 hours on my 2180, its not totally broken in yet. It takes awhile to break it in, BUT, the majority is done in the first few hours.
    Break-In
    Don't baby it, as my signature states below [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  4. #4
    Veteran Member DmansPadge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    1,678
    Location
    Orange, TX
    Tractor
    Kubota B2620, Toro 2000 Series Z Master

    Default Re: Break In?

    I agree with Mr Wiggles. It would seem that running it slow at first would be best, but, that is not the case. Run it like you would use it if it was 10 years old.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    1,401
    Location
    Georgia

    Default Re: Break In?

    I agree. I tell my customers to not be afraid to run it at full throttle, but only do so after letting the machine warm up for a little while. I also strongly recommend that my customers change the oil in their machines before the 15 hour mark. Thats our standard procedure.

  6. #6
    Silver Member AL_Josh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    132
    Location
    Mobile, Alabama
    Tractor
    Cub LT 1046, 2000 Honda Rancher, 2004 Carolina Skiff

    Default Re: Break In?

    Thanks for the help.

    I now have 4 hrs on it. I have been running it full throttle. Like the dealer said. I will be changing the oil arround the 10 hr mark.

    It is cutting fine but the next step I think is going to be leveling the deck. Everyone seems to rave about it so I would like to see if it will make a difference on my mower. I just need to pick up the little tool.

    I do not see a recomended oil in the manual for the motor it does give a suggested weight. I live in Mobile. So it gets pretty hot and hummid.

    Any suggestions?

  7. #7
    Veteran Member JTKub's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    1,560
    Location
    West Falls, NY
    Tractor
    Cub Cadet Z-Force 44

    Default Re: Break In?

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( ........I am 6' 4" and I do not have a bit of problems sitting on it. It cuts very nice. I am very pleased ... )</font>

    Holy cow Al, are you sitting in the tow behind cart? (j/kidding) the "break-in" concept cracks me up for a hydro drive LT/GT. You cant cut grass worth a darn at anything other than full throttle. The rings seat pretty quick on a modern small air cooled engine. No worries!
    G/luck
    Joel

  8. #8

    Default Re: Break In?

    The book says to run it at full throttle and the break in period is 24 Hrs. and that should be your first oil change then I believe its every 100 hrs after that. The book gives you a break down of service per hours on the machine

  9. #9

    Default Re: Break In?

    Well hopefully when you guys get a new boat motor or a new car you don't also run them wide open from the word go.....I always heard that proper break-in on engines require change in rpms to seat the rings correctly. I realize that a car motor is not a small air cooled engine, so there probably is somewhat of a difference, but it just doesn't make sense that you would treat engines differently when the ideal behind breaking in an engine is the same. Well crap... I guess my engine is going to explode on me 'cause I followed the manufacturers break in instructions [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img]

  10. #10
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    589

    Default Re: Break In?

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( Well hopefully when you guys get a new boat motor or a new car you don't also run them wide open from the word go.....I always heard that proper break-in on engines require change in rpms to seat the rings correctly. I realize that a car motor is not a small air cooled engine, so there probably is somewhat of a difference, but it just doesn't make sense that you would treat engines differently when the ideal behind breaking in an engine is the same. Well crap... I guess my engine is going to explode on me 'cause I followed the manufacturers break in instructions [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img] )</font>

    Car/boat engines are a little different. They usually recommend avoiding high speed or trailer pulling and not running at a constant speed. Lawn mowers, OTOH, are different since they are always run at max throttle to cut grass well. Unlike car engines, they are governed to not exceed a specified RPM, so full throttle is not really that high a speed.

    Bob B.

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