Kohler engine losing power under load? (We have a way) | Home updated (2023)

Many Americans own lawn mowers with Kohler engines. Although they generally run well, Kohler engines can lose power. Whether it's the fuel lines or the spark plugs, let's explore what you can do when your Kohler engine loses power.

Kohler engine losing power under load? (We have a way) | Home updated (1)

As winter turns to spring, it's time to free up outdoor space for relaxing and grilling in the garden. The mower stops when you start to cut rough grass, dry leaves and occasional branches.

There are several reasons why your Kohler engine may lose power under load. Problems can range from faulty spark plugs to dirty fuel lines and incorrect oil levels. Try to solve the problem yourself before taking actionLawn mowerto a professional service center.

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Kohler engine losing power under load? (We have a way) | Home updated (2)

Diagnosing Kohler Engine Problems

Be prepared as you may have a lot of questions to consider. Before disassembling the lawn mower, make sure you have the following items ready.

Tools needed for work:

  • work gloves
  • tissue
  • glasses
  • clamp
  • Screwdriver
  • socket wrench set
  • Socket Wrench/Fork
  • adjustable spanner
  • spark plug socket
  • steel brush
  • different

many people thinkmotor kohlerSome of the best engines on the market, but problems still happen. Therefore, understanding the mechanism is crucial in the troubleshooting process. Also, finding out where the various components are located will help you save time and money.

A systematic, step-by-step approach will help you identify problems and find solutions.

Step 1: Check the fuel

Make sure you have enough fuel. Also be sure to use the correct type of fuel for your lawn mower. This step is very simple but often overlooked.

(Video) Kohler No or Low Power Diagnose and repair

If you put the wrong fuel in the tank, empty it when it's full. If you have the wrong quart of fuel in your tank, fill it up correctly.fuel.

Step 2: Check the Fuel Supply

Once you've determined that the fuel level is correct, check the fuel lines for leaks, blockages, or dirt. Make sure the cutter is in the "OFF" position before removing the fuel line from the tank. Clean up any debris, if necessary, and check for cracks and possible leaks.

If your lawnmower uses a fuel pump, check it for cracks and dirt. If the internal parts are brittle and worn, the pump will need to be replaced. Do not neglect the fuel filter, be sure to clean it and inspect it for damage.

Step Three: Check the Spark Plugs

On a standard lawn mower,You must replace your spark plugs every season.or every 25 hours of use. Disconnect the spark plug wires and clean the area around them to prevent debris from entering the chamber. Using the spark plug socket, remove the spark plug and clean the area with a wire brush.

If the spark plugs are wet, there could be a faulty choke system or water in the fuel. However, if it is dry, the problem could be a leaking carburetor mounting gasket or a clogged carburetor needle. If you notice signs of burning or cracking, replace the spark plugs and be careful not to over-tighten them.

Step 4: Check the air filter

Before entering the carburetor, the air passes through a filter that removes dust and other debris. A dirty air filter can cause the engine to intermittently stall and stall. As with spark plugs, you should change the air filter every season or every 25 hours of operation.

If your lawnmower's air filter is made of crumpled paper, it needs to be replaced immediately. If it is a foam filter, it can be cleaned with hot water and detergent. Be sure to let it dry and dry completely before dipping it in fresh oil and installing it.

Step 5: Check the oil level

Typically, every season or every 50 hours of operation, you should change the oil in your garden equipment. Fresh new oil is amber in color and clear. In contrast, dark oil means that dirty oil has almost lost its ability to protect the engine.

After determining the freshness of the oil, check that the oil level is correct. Make sure the oil level is between the two dipstick holes. Overfilling or underfilling is just as bad as old, dirty oil and can damage your engine.

Step 6: Check the battery

If you are using a self-propelled lawn mower, you may need to check the battery and battery contacts. Gardening equipment batteries can be lost if not used during the season.

You can usually restore the battery by charging it for a few hours. Use a multimeter to check for signs of a dead battery or electrical system failure.

Step 7: Check the Choke

If you can restart the mower, the choke opens, causing the air and gasoline in the carburetor to move. If the choke gets stuck with oil and dirt, it will not open. This means that the mower will not move smoothly and will eventually lock up and shut down.

(Video) Zero Turn No Power, Bogs/Dies Under Load How To Diagnose Easy

Take a rag and clean the choke and the connections around it, making sure to remove any sticky residue. For best results, spray carburetor cleaner along the shaft to remove sand and dirt. The action should remove dirt immediately after turning it back on.

Check that the choke connections are properly aligned and not loose. If not properly adjusted, the choke valve will not open and close properly, causing the engine to stall.

Step 8: Check the circuit

To docheck the circuit, grab your trusty multimeter or voltage ohmmeter and get started. Mentally divide the circuit into its parts and examine each part accordingly. Check each section for current before moving on to the next.

After following these steps and your lawn mower still won't run, the problem may be with the carburetor. However, carburetor repair is a more complex process that requires more time and effort. Clean the carburetor and its components before attempting repairs.

How to Clean the Carburetor on a Kohler Engine

Tools needed for work:

  • work gloves
  • steel brush
  • Screwdriver
  • philips flat screwdriver
  • Oil
  • adjustable spanner
  • screw
  • clean cloth

Step 1: Remove the filter

Simply pull the filter away from the top of the carburetor. If it's corroded, you'll need a screwdriver to loosen it. Scrub the area with a wire brush and replace the filter.

Step Two: Unscrew the Throttle

Unscrew the throttle with a Phillips screwdriver and remove the old screw. Clean and lubricate the choke around the bolts.Replace the carburetor with new screws. Tap with your finger to ensure it rotates smoothly.

Step 3: Remove and clean the dipstick

You'll find the gauge rod in the fuel filler compartment. Use a wrench to remove the rod and discard the old screws attached to the mechanical system.Thoroughly clean the metering rod and lubricate the mechanical joints. Reattach the rod using new six-inch steel screws and an adjustable wrench.

Step 4: Unscrew the float valve

Unscrew the float valve with an adjustable wrench. Clean the surrounding area with a dry cloth and inspect the parts for damage and corrosion. If there is a lot of corrosion, the float valve will need to be replaced.

Scrub all areas around the float valve, including the injectors and intake area. Be sure to include the interior of the float chamber. When finished, use an adjustable wrench to replace the float valve.

After following all these steps, if the engine still stalls and starts, it might be time to call in a professional.

Quick Tips for Maintaining a Kohler Engine

Carefully following these simple maintenance steps will keep your Kohler engine and equipment in top condition.

  1. Read the user manual.
  2. Empty and clean after each use.
  3. Check the oil regularly.
  4. Check the filter regularly.
  5. Check and replace spark plugs if necessary.
  6. Blunt blades.
  7. Check for wear and adjust loose connections.

Need Lawn Mower Repair Services?

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Kohler engine losing power under load? (We have a way) | Home updated (3)

(Video) Why Does my Lawnmower have No Power?

Related questions

Should I fix my lawn mower or buy a new one?

It is certainly worth trying to repair your lawn mower before buying a new one. Most of the time, there is simply a blockage in the system that doesn't work smoothly. So cleaning your mower regularly will ensure that it lasts longer than one that was never maintained.

On the other hand, if your mower is more than a decade old, it might be time to get a new one. Repair costs over time are another factor you should consider.

How long does the lawn mower last?

With regular care, cleaning and maintenance, a standard lawn mower will last approximately 8 to 10 years. However, if you don't maintain it properly, you can expect your lawn mower to last 4-5 years. Also, if you use and abuse it extensively, expect its lifespan to be reduced to 2-3 years.

Are Kohler engines better than other engines?

Smaller engines made by Kohler have been shown to last longer and tend to be more balanced than the competition. The Kohler brand has been around for nearly 150 years and is now one of the oldest engine manufacturing companies in the world.

Keep future jobs in mind and research accordingly. No matter what brand of engine you end up with, maintaining your engine is key. With proper care and maintenance, your Kohler engine can last for many years.

related guide

  • Kohler Lawn Mower Engines Vs. Briggs: which one is better?
  • How to Recognize If a Lawnmower Engine Is Stuck
  • 160cc and 190cc Lawn Mower Engines: What Are the Key Differences?

stacey randle

Stacy Randall is a NOLA-based wife, mother, and freelance writer who has always loved DIY projects, home organization, and landscaping. In recent years, she has lovingly renovated her grandparents' old home with her husband, making it hers and learning a lot about life along the way.

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(Video) Riding Mower No Power, Bogs/Dies Under Load Easy Diagnosis and Repair


Why is my lawn mower losing power under load? ›

Replace dirty or clogged fuel filter. Replace old gas with fresh gas (properly dispose of old gas). Check oil level and add if low. Adjust cutting height of mower before cutting tall grass.

Why is my lawn mower not running at full power? ›

Loose, Dirty or Disconnected Spark Plug in Your Lawn Mower: Check it out, clean off debris, re-connect and tighten. Dirty Air Filter: Clean or replace. Fuel Not Reaching the Engine: Tap the side of the carburetor to help the flow of gas. If this doesn't work, you might need a new fuel filter.

What Kohler lawn mower engines are on recall? ›

This recall involves Kohler gasoline engine models SH265, CH245, CH255, CH270, CH395, CH440, and ECH440. The engines are used in a variety of outdoor power equipment including log splitters, generators, wood chippers, stump grinders, pressure washers, water pumps and snowbrushes and were also sold separately.

Why does my riding mower lose power when I engage the blades? ›

Whenever the blade is engaged, it rotates on a crankshaft to cut the grass. But if there is interference in this rotation, the engine can overload and shut off or lose power. Check the crankshaft connection to see if it rotates freely. Inspect the connecting hardware for damage or rust.

Why is my lawn mower engine bogging down? ›

Over time, a spark plug will wear out. Eventually, the spark will no longer be powerful enough to fully ignite the air and fuel. You are likely to notice power loss including bogging down when cutting grass because of a worn spark plug. Removing and replacing a spark plug is easy.

Should lawn mowers run at full throttle? ›

Lawn equipment (including lawn mowers, lawn tractors, and even trimmers and blowers) is designed to run at full throttle to give the best performance. Your blade will turn faster at higher throttling, which is essential to proper cutting.

Why is my lawn mower surging then dies? ›

If your lawn mower starts, runs briefly, then dies these are the four most common reasons that's happening: Dirty carburetor / clogged carburetor bowl. Old gasoline that has gone bad. Dirty or defective spark plugs.

How to stop governor surging? ›

Often surging caused by the governor can be fixed by simply adjusting the governor spring. It usually only takes a small adjustment to correct the surging. If the spring has stretched out it will need to be replaced.

How do you reset a governor? ›

Setting the governor is accomplished by activating a solenoid at any speed less than normal over-speed, thus setting the grips and activating the safety. Resetting is accomplished by first running the car briefly in the “UP” direction. A spring resets the governor grips.

What is the life expectancy of Kohler engines? ›

Well taken care of.... 5000 hours.

Is a Toro engine better than Kohler? ›

The biggest advantage the TORO V-Twin has over other top tier engines is that TORO can have it produced less expensively than buying similar quality engines from Kohler and Kawasaki which frees up dollars to offer a lower mower price or to invest that savings in making the mower better in other areas like the frame, ...

Are Kohler engines made in China? ›

Manufacturing of the new Kohler engines will occur in Chongqing, China. Kohler officials said the joint venture will have no impact on current employment in Kohler's three existing manufacturing facilities in Wisconsin, Mississippi or Mexico.

Why is my riding lawn mower losing power going uphill? ›

When a spark plug becomes fouled, the tips become coated with fuel, carbon, oil or dirt. This interference limits the ignition power needed for mowing on level or uphill surfaces. Maintain your spark plugs by changing them every season or regularly removing and cleaning the tips.

What are the symptoms of unbalanced mower blades? ›

An unbalanced blade spinning that fast will cause a significant amount of vibration, which will put stress on yout blade shaft, spindle, and even the engine. So if you want to get the most life out of your mower... keep the blades balanced! If playback doesn't begin shortly, try restarting your device.

Why does my mower keep dying while mowing? ›

The spark plugs are worn or damaged

If you find that your lawnmower keeps dying, or keeps stalling while cutting grass, then inspect the spark plugs. Look for signs of damage or wear. Something as simple as a cracked porcelain insulator can mean an electrode has been damaged or burned away.

What causes an engine to hunt and surge? ›

Engine hunting and surging at idle is usually caused by a fuel delivery, air leak, or governor system problem. Cleaning/overhauling the carburettor, adjustment of the governor, and/or changing the air filer may be required.

What are the symptoms of engine surge? ›

The problem may involve an annoying change (up/down) of engine speed while cruising at a steady pace, a low drop (or even cut-out) at idle or when approaching a stop, a wild high engine speed of several thousand rpm followed by a drop to near zero, etc.

Why is my lawnmower hunting? ›

Why does hunting happen? The most common cause for engine hunting is a blockage in the carburettor. Put simply, this restricts the fuel flow in the carburettor causing the engine to slow down. To try to compensate for this, the engine's governor opens the throttle to allow more fuel into the engine.

Why does my carburetor bog down when I accelerate? ›

The “Bog” simply means the engine is not receiving enough fuel when you go to wide open throttle. While there are other issues that may cause similar reactions within the carburetor, often the problem can be traced back to the accelerator pump system. Incorrect adjustment is the typical culprit.

Why does my lawn mower engine speed up and slow down? ›

The most common reason for a surging lawn mower engine is a blockage in the fuel supply, but there are other possibilities: Bad gas. Bad spark plug. Dirty/faulty carburetor.

What is throttle bogging? ›

When a dirt bike bogs, it simply means it's not getting enough fuel and the engine sputters or stalls at full throttle. There are two common types of bogging: lean bog and rich bog, distinguishable by how the bike sounds when you throttle. Lean Bog - Happens when there's too much air and not enough fuel in the engine.

Should you engage mower blades at full throttle? ›

(1) The blades should always be turned on at full throttle if the mower has a electric P.T.O. switch.

How can I improve my lawn mower performance? ›

Here are seven ways to keep lawn mowers running like new:
  1. Use a clean air filter. ...
  2. Use a clean fuel filter. ...
  3. Replace the oil. ...
  4. Replace the spark plug. ...
  5. Check the blade. ...
  6. Check tire pressure. ...
  7. Clean the undercarriage.
Mar 7, 2013

Why is my riding lawn mower chugging? ›

Dirty air filters are one of the most common reasons lawn mowers sputter. Dirt can be present in the apertures that lead from the carburetor and the fuel filter and interrupt the flow of fuel supply to the combustion chamber. You want to be sure to clean or replace dirty air filters.

Can a governor cause surging? ›

The other problem that often occurs is governor hunting or surging up and down. Most of the time this is not the problem of the governor, but a partially plugged carburetor, usually a plugged idle circuit or worn linkage.

What is engine surging? ›

What Is Engine Surge? Basically, when an engine surges, you notice your car speeding up and slowing down even while you keep the accelerator steady. You may notice the tachometer fluctuating, for example, from 1500 to 2000 rpm. At the same time, you may feel a soft and rhythmic jerking motion.

What is the RPM of a 27 hp Kohler engine? ›

With it in the water it is running 3600-3700 rpm so it is in the recommended range most of the time.

Does increasing RPM increase power? ›

The higher the RPM, the more power the engine can produce. RPM is a determining factor for any form of power in the vehicle's output. Vehicle torque is calculated based on the RPM at any given time. This means that the engine's power output determines the torque of a vehicle engine.

What is the cause of surging? ›

There are several reasons that surging occurs. A restriction to flow or fouling in the air/gas system is one possible factor. This could be caused by a dirty charge air cooler, or dirt or contamination on a nozzle ring, for example.

Does the governor control engine speed? ›

The engine governor controls engine speed, and in some generator applications, generator load.

Does a governor limit rpm? ›

Maximum governed RPM means, for an engine which has a functioning governor, the manufacturer's recommended maximum engine speed as restricted by the governor.

Can you override the speed governor? ›

All speed limiters can be overridden by pushing down hard on the accelerator, ensuring that you can always accelerate away should you need to do so.

Can you run for governor twice? ›

The governors of the following states and territories are limited to two consecutive terms, but are eligible to run again after four years out of office: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, ...

Can you adjust air governor? ›

To raise the pressure settings, turn the adjusting screw counter-clockwise. To lower the pressure settings, turn the adjusting screw clockwise. Note: Be careful not to over adjust. Each 1/4 turn of the adjusting screw raises or lowers the pressure setting approximately 4 psi.

What is the most powerful Kohler engine? ›

The KDI 3404TCR-SCR Stage V in the Power Pack version is the most powerful engine in Kohler's offering, with performance capable of reaching 650 Nm / 1400 rpm of maximum torque and 112 kW / 1800 rpm of maximum power (105 kW / 2200 rpm).

Why does my Kohler engine keep dying? ›

The carburetor might be clogged. A clogged carburetor is most commonly caused by leaving fuel in the engine for a long period of time. Over time, some of the ingredients in the fuel may evaporate, leaving behind a thicker, stickier substance. This sticky fuel can clog up the carburetor and cause the engine to stall.

Does John Deere still use Kohler engines? ›

Kohler Engines supplies multiple engine models to John Deere's operations in Horicon, Wis., Greeneville, Tenn., and Fuquay Varina, N.C. "No other engine manufacturer has received such high honors from John Deere," Shoemaker observed. "We will continue to make great strides in driving quality throughout our company."

Is Kawasaki engine better than Kohler? ›

Reliability and Efficiency

You may not know, but Kawasaki hires a third-party testing group to ensure the reliability of its Critical Power engines before they hit the market. But if you want maximum fuel efficiency, Command models from Kohler are the best engine to consider.

Which is better Kohler or Honda engines? ›

Both brands offer high-quality products. But when compared in multiple factors, they deliver different values: Power: Kohler is the better option for the heavy tasks because it has more powerful products. However, Honda engines are easier to maneuver.

What's a better engine Kohler or Kawasaki? ›

There is no doubt that both engines are powerful and can cut through the toughest of yards. However, after using both motors on Gravely, Hustler, John Deere, and Cub Cadet, I concluded that the Kawasaki FR is the more robust and durable engine over Kohler 7000.

Who makes oil for KOHLER engines? ›

Kohler PRO 10W-50 is engineered by Amsoil as a premium lubricant specifically for air cooled engines.

Who owns KOHLER? ›

David Kohler

Who owns KOHLER Motors? ›

President and CEO David Kohler represents the fourth generation of the Kohler family to lead the 145-year-old company. His great grandfather, John Michael Kohler, founded the company in 1873.

How do I know if I have a bad carburetor on my lawn mower? ›

A dirty or restricted carburetor on a lawn mower is fairly easy to diagnose: The lawn mower engine has trouble starting. The engine starts but stalls while you're cutting the lawn. The engine runs rough during mowing.

Why does my lawn mower lose power going up hill? ›

When a spark plug becomes fouled, the tips become coated with fuel, carbon, oil or dirt. This interference limits the ignition power needed for mowing on level or uphill surfaces. Maintain your spark plugs by changing them every season or regularly removing and cleaning the tips.

Why is my lawn mower hesitating? ›

Clogged or Dirty Air Filters

It is one of the most common problems that cause lawnmowers to sputter. The mowers take the air from the surrounding through air filters and mix it with fuel inside the engine. So, if the air filter is clogged or dirty, it will affect the flow of air into the carburetor.

What causes a carbureted engine to surge? ›

If an engine is not getting enough fuel (this is called “running lean”), due to fuel pressure (regulated by the fuel pump and regulator), restricted fuel injectors, a vacuum leak or really anything that throws off the fuel mixture going in to the engine, this can cause the surge.

What are the symptoms of carburetor not getting enough fuel? ›

Four Signs Your Carburetor Is Failing
  • Engine Performance Reduction. As mentioned above, combustion starts and keeps your engine running. ...
  • Black Exhaust Smoke. You shouldn't see black smoke coming out of your exhaust pipe even if you drive a diesel. ...
  • Engine Backfires or Overheats. ...
  • Starting Difficulty. ...
  • Don't Ignore the Signs.
Oct 29, 2019

What causes a hydrostatic transmission to lose power? ›

Failure of any mechanical component, a broken hose, or clogged filter will cause tractor hydrostatic transmission problems. But the most common issue will be the oil itself. In the transmission section of your operator's manual, you'll find a section that covers oil viscosity.

Why does my Cub Cadet riding mower lose power uphill? ›

Check for bent or damaged belt idler brackets, a missing, broken, or worn idler tension spring, and service as needed. If these do not resolve the situation, the problem may be with internal components of the transmission.

Why will my mower idle but not accelerate? ›

If the engine will idle but dies at full throttle the main jet in the carburetor may be plugged. You can repair a plugged main jet by cleaning it, replacing the jet, or replacing the carburetor. If you choose to clean or replace the main jet, you will also want to clean the rest of the carburetor.

Why does my lawnmower run for 10 minutes then dies? ›

As the fuel level drops, a vacuum begins to form in the fuel tank because air can get in to fill the space the consumed fuel occupied. After about 10 or 15 minutes, the vacuum will become strong enough that fuel will stop flowing to the carburetor and the lawnmower will die.


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