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Kioti DK35SE HST Review

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Good Tractor But Irritating Posted by Arthur Paarmann on 08/20/2012

I bought my tractor from Ceresville New Holland Kioti because it is only 20 miles from my farm. The tractor appears to be well built and it has a nice set of features. Feature-for-feature, Kioti is cheaper than other makes.

However, it has several drawbacks, that if I had looked at them closer before purchase, I doubt I would have made the same choice.

On the very day that the tractor was delivered, I noticed that the parking brake did not work. I called the dealer – they told me that the info about adjusting the parking brake was in the owner’s manual. So I proceeded in the adjustment, but I could not get anywhere. I let that go.

A couple of months later, when the tractor had 32 hours on the clock, the tractor had to go back to the dealer for a different problem (more about this later). I took the opportunity to ask them to look at the parking brake. Supposedly they “adjusted” it, however, when it was returned to me it was as useless as ever. I tried again to adjust it myself, but to no avail. I came to the conclusion that there must be a design fault, and the parking brake is useless.

When the tractor had 32 hours on the clock, a hydraulic hose busted. Luckily I caught it before any serious damage occurred. Since I had no means to take the tractor to the dealer, I hired the dealer for the transportation to and from my farm to his shop. The repair was fully covered by the warranty, but it was a shocker when they presented me with a bill for $661 for the transportation cost (which included $25 for “shop supplies”). On this occasion they tried to “adjust” the parking brake – a complete failure.

The tractor has a nice radio and CD player. However, the tractor is so loud that the radio/CD is completely useless. You MUST wear ear muffs when operating this thing, which obviously makes the radio/CD worthless. Kioti should do one of two things: 1. install a much better muffler (preferred), or 2. Put a plug on the radio so that I can plug-in some noise-cancelling earmuffs that let me hear the radio (Boise, or the like). A third option would be to cancel the radio and use the savings toward a better muffler and/or sound isolation.

The front loader is hyper-sensitive. Just touching the joystick, the bucket drops like a rock, even when empty. It is very difficult to modulate the bucket movements into a smooth motion. Perhaps the bucket hydraulics need a valve similar to the one that adjust the rate of travel for the lower links.

On a positive note, the front loader has a neat removable bucket–presumably to be replaced by some other implement. I have not yet used this feature. On a negative note, the front loader is more difficult to remove or reinstall than others I have seen. This is not a big problem because it is not something that most people do very often.

The engine oil-filler is a nightmare. It is located under the platform that holds the A/C compressor. The engineer who designed it must have been on some weed experimentation. It would have been a very simple fix to move the filler a few inches back on the valve cover. I will try to fix this by cutting an access hole through the A/C compressor platform using a hole saw. As it is now, you must be very inventive on how you are going to add/replace engine oil.

I don’t know if this is a problem or not, but I have had to refill the coolant overflow bottle three times (I estimate to be somewhat less that a quart capacity, and the tractor has now 64 hrs on the clock). I have not detected any leaks, and I do not believe it is leaking into the engine oil because I think I would have detected some emulsifying. This is too much of a loss for evaporation. The only thing I can think at this time is that the cooling system was not completely full and it is pulling-in the contents of the overflow tank at each heating/cooling cycle. I will keep an eye on it.

It appears to be a real gas-hog (actually, diesel-hog). I have not actually measured the fuel consumption but I will. It must be because of the weight – this tractor is considerably heavier that other tractors of the same horsepower. Certainly it is not because it is overworked; we use it only to cut grass with a 5 ft bush hog, in a perfectly flat field, where we never let the grass get taller than 8 inches.

Model year: 2011 Date Purchased: 05/15/2011 Number of Hours: 64
Pros: Nice set of features. Cons: Loud, useless radio, useless parking brake, front loader difficult to use. Type of User: Commercial Farmer Location: United States Maryland I also considered buying:
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