I want to buy a new 425 this year but ...

   #1  

Frank Sorbello

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Power Trac PT-422
I am leery about the Subaru engines. I haven't seen many posts from later model PT-425 users. Maybe that is a good thing because they aren't having problems with their machines. I wish there were late model users on here to gauge how satisfied the owners are with their machines.

I bought my 99 PT-422 in Feb of 2013. It wasn't running and had many problems. The Subaru EH65 engined had been rebuilt in 2012. I have done a lot of work to it. It does run good, but sometimes it has its moments like cold starting, sudden loss of power and backfiring that have me wondering is this the best engine for this tractor.

I don't want to purchase a new 425 and have issues with cold starting and such. Do any of you know if the Subaru's have gotten better in the last 15 years?

I wish there were engine options for the PT-425. A small diesel would be nice. Would any of you have any reservations about buying a new 425 after having owned a PT with a Subaru in it.

Thanks
Frank
 
  
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Frank Sorbello

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Power Trac PT-422
Moss Road,

When the temp drops below 45 she is hard starting. I have to put heat to hit for it to start, other wise I will wear down the battery. I have other equipment with Kohler engines that fire right up at 20 degrees, although they do not have the hydraulic load on it like the Power Trac. Wish there was a way to start tractor with out the load on it.
 
  
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Frank Sorbello

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Power Trac PT-422
Moss Road,

If you sold your PT-425 tomorrow. A month later you decided you missed your PT-425. Would you hesitate buying a new one knowing it doesn't have a Kohler in it, especially since you have read most if not all the posts on this forum about the various problems with the Subaru engines?
 
   #7  

MossRoad

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Moss Road,

If you sold your PT-425 tomorrow. A month later you decided you missed your PT-425. Would you hesitate buying a new one knowing it doesn't have a Kohler in it, especially since you have read most if not all the posts on this forum about the various problems with the Subaru engines?

Given the experiences of the folks here with older Subaru engines, yes, I'd definitely hesitate. (of course I would not sell it, but lets say I did). I need mine the most when its really cold out to remove snow. My Kohler starts very easily at 20F. Below that, it takes some finesse. Below 10 I always give it a shot of starting fluid. In 13 years of ownership, its only failed to start once, and that was because I flooded it. I had to pull the plugs, shut off the throttle, crank it over several times, put the plugs back in and start it at NO throttle until it popped, then increase the throttle till it caught. But its always started. Heck, I just changed the plugs and air cleaner in it for the first time this spring (12.5 years). Original starter, solenoid, etc... about 600 hours. On my third battery, though.

I don't have any experience with the fuel injected engines. So you'll have to ask someone that has one of the new Subarus how cold they've started theirs. :confused:
 
  
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Frank Sorbello

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Power Trac PT-422
I don't have any experience with the fuel injected engines. So you'll have to ask someone that has one of the new Subarus how cold they've started theirs. :confused:[/QUOTE]

I don't think Power Trac offers the PT-425 with a fuel injected engine.
So you would be hesitant on buying a new PT-425 with a Subaru engine. That is where I am at and have been for the past year. I would like more information on later models, 2012 and newer.
How many PT-425's would you guess Power Trac sells in a year?

I have tried getting information about the performance of the Subaru engine from Power Trac, of course they will only tell you the positives. I would like to know as much as possible before I do pull the trigger.
 
   #9  

MossRoad

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I thought all the new 400 series had fuel injected Subaru engines. Don't know why I thought that. If they are carbureted, that would be even more reason for me not to purchase one, based on the cold starting issues posted by Subaru owners. I would assume fuel injection would probably help with cold starting, but, again, I am making assumptions and have no experience with the Subaru engines.

I think I'd post the question to the PT400 series owners as:

Who on this board has a newer PT400 series unit with a Subaru and what are the lowest temps you have started it at? Is it reliable starting?

And I'd ask Power Trac specifically what engines they are putting in the 400 series and if they are carbureted or fuel injected?
 

KMA

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Owego, NY
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In my experience, the fuel injected subaru engine (EH72 FI) starts about 15 degrees or so colder than a carbureted model (EH65). I can now start it around 30 degrees without too much issue, and find myself putting the block heater on the oil tank instead of the engine for easier starts. In other words, as temps drop the issue becomes the load of pushing thick oil through the pump.

I believe the biggest concern with the Subaru engines is the high temp conditions found in the tub of the PT4xx machines. This is more of a PT design issue than a knock against the Subarus, but other engines may survive a bit better in the extreme environment.
 

BobRip

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There was a post from someone with a new PT425 and they were not having problems down into the 20's.
 

marrt

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I've owned both and vastly prefer the Kohler engine. The Subaru won't start reliably below about 40 degrees. I keep a cheap oil heater under the tractor (turned on it's side) and it starts perfectly.

If you read some of my other posts, you'll see I'm convinced cold starts are very hard on the variable displacement pump. Consequently, I personally think it makes sense to keep the tractor in a garage or keep a magnetic heater or other heat source on the oil reservoir anyway. In this scenario, I wouldn't hesitate to get the Subaru (since there's no other option) because I believe it's best to keep the oil a bit warm in any scenario.

Just my opinion.
 
  
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Frank Sorbello

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I called Power Trac today. The only thing that has changed in the PT-425 is that they upgraded the wheel motors. New ones have more torque.
She said they also have a new heater kit for cold starting. She said the reviews were great. I asked if they were planning on ever going back to Kohlers. She said the cost was too much because they would have to buy the Kohlers from a dealer. She said the PT-425 was their best selling machine. No number as to how many they sell a year.

Bob if you can remember where you saw that post I would like to see it. Maybe they had the new heater kit on it.
 
  
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Frank Sorbello

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I've owned both and vastly prefer the Kohler engine. The Subaru won't start reliably below about 40 degrees. I keep a cheap oil heater under the tractor (turned on it's side) and it starts perfectly.

If you read some of my other posts, you'll see I'm convinced cold starts are very hard on the variable displacement pump. Consequently, I personally think it makes sense to keep the tractor in a garage or keep a magnetic heater or other heat source on the oil reservoir anyway. In this scenario, I wouldn't hesitate to get the Subaru (since there's no other option) because I believe it's best to keep the oil a bit warm in any scenario.

Just my opinion.


How old is your PT-425?
 

tmarks11

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She said they also have a new heater kit for cold starting. She said the reviews were great.
She provide any more details about what the "new heater kit" was?

I wish Power Trac would keep their website more or less up to date. Their "NEW" page shows the backhoe thumb and grapple that they introduced in 2009. I guess that is "new" by their calculations.
 

BobRip

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She provide any more details about what the "new heater kit" was?

I wish Power Trac would keep their website more or less up to date. Their "NEW" page shows the backhoe thumb and grapple that they introduced in 2009. I guess that is "new" by their calculations.

I saw the heater when I was there in September. It is a flat heater mounted to the back of the hydraulic tank. Most of the heat will go to the hydraulic tank and some into the engine compartment.
 

BobRip

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I called Power Trac today. The only thing that has changed in the PT-425 is that they upgraded the wheel motors. New ones have more torque.
She said they also have a new heater kit for cold starting. She said the reviews were great. I asked if they were planning on ever going back to Kohlers. She said the cost was too much because they would have to buy the Kohlers from a dealer. She said the PT-425 was their best selling machine. No number as to how many they sell a year.

Bob if you can remember where you saw that post I would like to see it. Maybe they had the new heater kit on it.

I searched and could not find the post. Sorry! I hoped the poster would comment against.
 
  
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Frank Sorbello

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Bob, do you think the heater is better than the magnetic ones? I have two magnetic heater I put on the outside of the tank. They are okay but I still need to put a propane heater facing it too. Eddie at Power Trac said he uses one the new heaters and it makes a big difference.
 

ponytug

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Any idea how many watts the new heater is?

I agree with Martt on the potential impact of cold oil. My issue is getting things warm at the right time- I don't always know in advance when I will be needing the PT! :)

All the best,

Peter
 

BobRip

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Bob, do you think the heater is better than the magnetic ones? I have two magnetic heater I put on the outside of the tank. They are okay but I still need to put a propane heater facing it too. Eddie at Power Trac said he uses one the new heaters and it makes a big difference.

I do did not ask the wattage. I think the advantage of this is that being in the engine compartment more of the heat will reach things that need it. Both hydraulic and engine need heat, and they will get some. A magnetic heater on the outside will not send any heat to the engine.
 

Gravy

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I do did not ask the wattage. I think the advantage of this is that being in the engine compartment more of the heat will reach things that need it. Both hydraulic and engine need heat, and they will get some. A magnetic heater on the outside will not send any heat to the engine.

In my experience, the EH72 isn't happy trying to start while dragging a hydraulic pump with frigid oil. For at least the last 5 or 6 years, I have used one magnetic block heater on the top of tram pump and another on the hydraulic reservoir inside the tub. I also installed a bigger battery and heavier battery cables. That has made the difference between starting under protest and refusing to start at all when the temperature is much below 40*F. If it's well below freezing, I've often draped a tarp over the engine cover to hold in some heat.

The new big block has started at 28*F once with no added heat. I'll see if it repeats the performance when winter really sets in.
 

BobRip

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I do did not ask the wattage. I think the advantage of this is that being in the engine compartment more of the heat will reach things that need it. Both hydraulic and engine need heat, and they will get some. A magnetic heater on the outside will not send any heat to the engine.

It's not a lot of difference though.
 

BobRip

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In my experience, the EH72 isn't happy trying to start while dragging a hydraulic pump with frigid oil. For at least the last 5 or 6 years, I have used one magnetic block heater on the top of tram pump and another on the hydraulic reservoir inside the tub. I also installed a bigger battery and heavier battery cables. That has made the difference between starting under protest and refusing to start at all when the temperature is much below 40*F. If it's well below freezing, I've often draped a tarp over the engine cover to hold in some heat.

The new big block has started at 28*F once with no added heat. I'll see if it repeats the performance when winter really sets in.

Ooh, I looked at your post again. Your way is fine. You just have to move the heater out after the start.
 

MossRoad

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Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year
If I was going to get a heater, I'd probably get one or two of these heating pads and stick them on the side of the hydraulic tank inside the engine compartment where they wouldn't get torn up:
https://www.wolverineheater.com/Engine-Oil-Heaters-for-Cars-s/1814.htm

Then I'd go down to my local u-haul store and pick up one or two of these mover's quilts and drape them over the hydraulic tank and engine compartment:

Object moved

And I'd get a heavy duty 20Amp X-10 AC outlet in my garage like this:
X10 Heavy Duty Appliance Receptacle, 20A, 240VAC

So I could turn it off and on from inside the house with a cheap x10 controller like this:
X10 Plug-In Desktop Mini Controller
 

ponytug

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Toys, toys, toys...:)

Sounds like a great setup. Those seem to be wonderful heaters. Thanks for the link.

All the best,

Peter
If I was going to get a heater, I'd probably get one or two of these heating pads and stick them on the side of the hydraulic tank inside the engine compartment where they wouldn't get torn up:
https://www.wolverineheater.com/Engine-Oil-Heaters-for-Cars-s/1814.htm

Then I'd go down to my local u-haul store and pick up one or two of these mover's quilts and drape them over the hydraulic tank and engine compartment:

Object moved

And I'd get a heavy duty 20Amp X-10 AC outlet in my garage like this:
X10 Heavy Duty Appliance Receptacle, 20A, 240VAC

So I could turn it off and on from inside the house with a cheap x10 controller like this:
X10 Plug-In Desktop Mini Controller
 

BobRip

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Powhatan Va.
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2000 Power Trac 422
If I was going to get a heater, I'd probably get one or two of these heating pads and stick them on the side of the hydraulic tank inside the engine compartment where they wouldn't get torn up:
https://www.wolverineheater.com/Engine-Oil-Heaters-for-Cars-s/1814.htm

Then I'd go down to my local u-haul store and pick up one or two of these mover's quilts and drape them over the hydraulic tank and engine compartment:

Object moved

And I'd get a heavy duty 20Amp X-10 AC outlet in my garage like this:
X10 Heavy Duty Appliance Receptacle, 20A, 240VAC

So I could turn it off and on from inside the house with a cheap x10 controller like this:
X10 Plug-In Desktop Mini Controller
That heater looking lot like the one PT used.
 
   #27  

ernemats

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Which heater?
 

smilindave

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Dayton, Pa
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Moss, your setup seems viable except for the last option. It is only rated for 120 volts
 

MossRoad

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The controller only has to be 120 volts. It sends a signal over the power lines to the devices you want to control.

They make a 20A 110V outlet as well, just don't offer them on that website. I've had one running my pool pump for years.
 

MossRoad

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For many years I used X10 stuff with no problems. Then, all of a sudden, things started going whacky in our house. Lights on at weird times, pool shutting off and on, etc.... I think someone else in the neighborhood had it. I never tried changing house codes. I used to use it on Christmas lights. Very handy. Kid's aquarium light as a night light.

At one time, I had it turning on the lights under the cabinets in the kitchen at 20% 5 minutes before my wife got up to light her way to the basement to do her workout. Then it would come on in my kids room 5 minutes before she was supposed to get up, and gradually increase 10% every couple minutes until lights were full intensity. Kept from blowing your eyes out in the morning. Had out closet light come on dim and increase when it was my turn to get up. Turned all the house lights off 10 minutes after we left, and 10 minutes before we came home just the ones we used. Pool timer in summer, too. Had a "movie mode" in the living room. Pushed that macro and the table lamps would come on and the overheads would go off. Then, every minute the table lamps would dim 10% until they got down to just a nice glow on the ends.

Problems with that stuff now, is they don't work on CFLs. Waiting for LEDs to become cheaper. Those are dimable.

Anyhow, I'm looking for my Power Flash module to hook up in our garage. We kept the car outside for 18 years. Got it inside this year. Now we forget to close the garage door. :laughing: So, I'll put a wide-gap magnetic switch on the garage door, connect it to the power flash module and set it to the code for a lamp module in the kitchen with a night light in it. When the door is open, the nightlight will be lit. When the door is closed, the night light will be out.

It fun stuff to play with, but cheap and cheaply made.
 

J_J

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I just installed a garage door opener with WI-FI.

Using a smart phone, you can check to see if the door is open or closed and if open, you can close it from around the world.

You can also program it to close after a set time.

I am doing the WI-FI thermostat next.

Then the security cameras.
 

SpringHollow

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Just be careful with your wifi security. People can hack in and use the cameras to see if you are home etc. if you do not use good passwords and such.

Ken
 
   #38  

PABenz

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Pennslyvania, Westmoreland County
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I have had a 422 since 2004. It's in an unheated shed and when it was below zero this winter, I just put a tarp over the engine compartment and used a small electric space heater for an hour. When I have problems starting, I take out the plugs and warm them with a propane torch...usually fires up right away when I do that.
 
 
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