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  1. #1

    Default Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    Hello,

    I have a John Deere 170 riding lawnmower. My problem is it starts but dies after 30 seconds or so. Sometimes it will stay running a bit longer if I mess with the choke, down quickly then up all the way again. I have replaced the spark plug, igniter, key switch, and the blade engage switch. It seems to get fuel to the carb but not sure if it is getting to the combustion chamber. I really need some help, I can not afford to pay someone to fix this nor can I afford to keep buying parts that don't fix the problem.

    Thank you in advance for any help
    Jerry

  2. #2
    Gold Member Jimmy Joe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    349
    Location
    Medford Wisconsin

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    Did you try running it with the fuel cap removed?

  3. #3
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    18,350
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    Maybe increase the idle speed and open the high speed jet on the carb a touch??

    And make sure you have a proper fuel supply at the carb.
    Egon
    50 years behind the times
    Livin in a
    Worn out skin bag filled with rattlin bones

  4. #4

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    First I will try running with fuel cap removed. Secondly, At one point it would stay running with the oil dipstick partially removed. Also I was messing around with it yesterday and had it running when I would force the throttle? to stay in one position. It would run but at a lower engine speed. Sorry I do not know the proper terms, I am somewhat new to engine repair . Thanks for the replies

  5. #5
    Elite Member zzvyb6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    2,886
    Location
    michigan
    Tractor
    jd 1070

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    Plugged fuel filter or "stuff" in bottom of fuel tank is preventing fuel flow? 30 seconds sounds line a carb bowl amount of gas. Low fuel pump output, too? I don't think you need any more parts, just some disassembly and purging of water or junk in the lines. On mine, there was something like jello in the fuel pump diaphragm area. Cleaned it out and Bingo! Early symptoms were that it would lose power after making left turns and then start back up. That made me think it was electrical. But, it was mystery juice in the fuel.
    There is no "I" in team, but there is a "Me" if you want to jumble it up a bit...

  6. #6
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    124
    Location
    Loudon, New Hampshire
    Tractor
    Agco ST35

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    The Deere 170 has a 14hp Kawasaki engine. Are you comfortable in taking the carb apart? You problem does sound like fuel, but is it fuel delivery to the carb, or a blockage in the carb?

    Run the engine until it fails. Remove the carb bowl to see how much fuel was in the carb bowl. On some carbs there's phillips head screw on the carb bowl to drain the bowl. If so, use that to measure the fuel. If the bowl contains little or no fuel you have a fuel delivery problem and should look at fuel lines for a blockage, a defective fuel pump, or a bad pulse line from the engine to the fuel pump. If the bowl was full then there is probably dirt in the main jet and/or the low speed jet.

    When you drop the bowl, or open the drain screw, look closely at the fuel. Many times that visual inspection will point you in the right direction.

  7. #7
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    1
    Tractor
    john deer 170

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    I just read this forum after watching my husband struggle with the same problem. Thank you guys! He went thru everything except taking off the gas cap. I came out and told him what was said and I had to convience him to try it! Just to shut me up he didit and it worked! Kudos to the internet and your wealth of helpful information from a Gal in Newport who only knows how to use a computer and ride a John Deer...
    Last edited by ccsweeps; 06-21-2011 at 06:46 PM. Reason: misspelling

  8. #8
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    1
    Location
    danielsville ga
    Tractor
    john deere 170 lawn tractor

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    I have a very similar problem, but I would say once cranked the engine only runs about 10 seconds before it acts like it is out of fuel. We recently installed a new fuel pump and it corrected the problem of not starting until I used the mower twice, then this new problem started. I initially thought it was out of fuel, but that is not the case.

  9. #9
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    212
    Location
    Central Texas

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    Remove the gas cap and clean the threads on the gas cap itself, and clean the threads on the fuel tank that the gap cap connects to. I had a lawn tractor that would run for 15 minutes and then die on its own. Turns out there was a layer of dirt and grime on the gas cap and fuel tank connection that was thick enough to prevent air flow. Since there was no air flow, pressure built up in the fuel tank and prevented the fuel from flowing to the carb.

    Best,

    Spindifferent

  10. #10
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    3,768
    Location
    nicholson, pa
    Tractor
    John Deer Lt160

    Default Re: Please help John Deere 170 won't stay running

    look at the bottom of the fuel pump, there is a wire that comes out of it, if its getting loose or broken it could be doing what your describing.

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