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Old 10-04-2011, 11:00 PM   post #1 of 17
simpsonc9
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Default Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Hello, I have been working on my friend's Wheel Horse 518-H - 31-18OE01. The inital problem he was having was that the mower deck was disengaging after only a minute or two of mowing. For this I replaced the belt which was old, cracked and loose, we also replaced the blades. After that was said and done I figured everything would work properly again, well I was wrong.

Now, about a minute or so after engaging the mower (PTO), the engine will want start to die out leading to it stalling. I read somewhere else on here that it could be due to the seat switch or safety switch on the PTO? The tractor runs fine and the lights come on, we even tested out the seat switch by sitting up while the PTO is engaged and it works fine, cuts the engine right off. Only odd thing is that when just driving the tractor and standing up the seat switch does not shut down the engine, could that have something to do with it? otherwise it's just when you engage the PTO there becomes problems.

Does either one of the switches need replacing or could you just disconnect them? If anyone could help me figure this out we would both appreciate it as the lawn needs to get mowed at least one more time before winter. Thank you for your time in advance!
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Old 10-05-2011, 12:27 AM   post #2 of 17
Anonymous
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

For debugging purposes I've temporarily bypassed switches with a jumper wire to help me pin down which one is faulty for sporadic electrical issues like yours.
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Old 10-05-2011, 12:54 AM   post #3 of 17
buffy12590
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Usually if the engine is running and an interlock switch is compromised / faulted the engine shuts down imediately, not run for a minute or so after the fault. If you take the drive belt off the pto does the same thing occur? If not then look to the mower deck for your problem. Loading down the engine? If it starts to fail what happens if you disengage the pto, does the engine speed pick back up?
Please update.
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Old 10-05-2011, 02:47 AM   post #4 of 17
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Is it a manual PTO or electric PTO?
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Old 10-07-2011, 04:51 AM   post #5 of 17
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Quote:
we even tested out the seat switch by sitting up while the PTO is engaged and it works fine, cuts the engine right off. Only odd thing is that when just driving the tractor and standing up the seat switch does not shut down the engine, could that have something to do with it? otherwise it's just when you engage the PTO there becomes problems.
There are two different interlock switches on the newer 300/400/500 series tractors. One prevents the engine from being started if the PTO is engaged, the other shuts the engine down in the event that the driver leaves the seat- but only if the PTO is engaged. With the PTO disengaged, you should be able to stand up without the engine shutting off. That's normal operation.

I would back up to the basics before blaming the interlock system on this one. I would check to see if the deck blades and belt routing pulleys spin freely- just to make sure there isn't some excessive drag on the engine. Then I would look at the ignition coil. Sometimes with Performer-series Onans, the coil will begin to fail only when the engine is hot. If you shut the tractor off for a few minutes, it cools a bit and cranks right back up. When you "load" the engine with the mower deck engaged, it's gonna push your operating temperature up quicker than it will without it.

Good luck!
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Old 10-09-2011, 01:48 PM   post #6 of 17
simpsonc9
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Did some tinkering with it last night, I disconnected the seat and the PTO switch, cleaned each one out and tried a few things out, still not working properly. I tried out engaging the PTO and standing up, the engine cuts off as it should. I can run the mower deck for about 3-5 minutes before the engine starts to want to die out and even after disengaging the PTO the engine still wants to die no matter if I throttle down or up or anything, no matter what the engine will die on me but after the engine dies I can start it back up with one crank and then the same thing happens all over again if I try to engage the PTO.

This is a manual PTO with the lever on the side and I just replaced the mower blades and the PTO belt so everything is good and tight, I also cleaned out the deck and greased the spindles, everything was spinning free when I put the deck back on. If there was strain on the engine wouldn't that be apparent immediatley when you engage the mower? Everything sounds and feels good when the deck is engaged.

Is there any good way to test the coil to see if it is at fault? Also, how easy/difficult is a new coil to come by? The engine runs fine, I can drive the tractor around with no problem but like you said by loading the engine with that mower deck engaged it wouldn't take too long for it to get hot.

The only other thing is a pesky parking brake light that is on even though the parking brake is not engaged and a flashing oil pressure light even though the oil checks out fine, any tips on a remedy to those?

I appreciate all of the help!
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Old 10-09-2011, 03:56 PM   post #7 of 17
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Quote:
Originally Posted by simpsonc9 View Post
Hello, I have been working on my friend's Wheel Horse 518-H - 31-18OE01. The inital problem he was having was that the mower deck was disengaging after only a minute or two of mowing. For this I replaced the belt which was old, cracked and loose, we also replaced the blades. After that was said and done I figured everything would work properly again, well I was wrong.

Now, about a minute or so after engaging the mower (PTO), the engine will want start to die out leading to it stalling. I read somewhere else on here that it could be due to the seat switch or safety switch on the PTO? The tractor runs fine and the lights come on, we even tested out the seat switch by sitting up while the PTO is engaged and it works fine, cuts the engine right off. Only odd thing is that when just driving the tractor and standing up the seat switch does not shut down the engine, could that have something to do with it? otherwise it's just when you engage the PTO there becomes problems.

Does either one of the switches need replacing or could you just disconnect them? If anyone could help me figure this out we would both appreciate it as the lawn needs to get mowed at least one more time before winter. Thank you for your time in advance!
Check all the wires going to and coming from each of the lockout switches. They are located under the seat, the PTO (underneath the panel your gearshift goes through), and the clutch. I had a similar problem. Everything looked fine until I actually pushed each of the wires that had a spade connector on to the terminal. Problem solved. The guy who said to jumper your lockout wires together was right on the money. I don't want to do that to my seat, cause I have some hills, and sometimes they get wet. Defiitely sounds like an electrical problem.
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Old 10-10-2011, 01:02 AM   post #8 of 17
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Is there a possibility the charging system is overcharging, and someone put in a circuit breaker so they wouldnt have to put a new fuse in every time? And as it overcharges after a few minutes, it trips the breaker...which resets after a few seconds?

Might try to see what kind of voltage the batt shows when it cuts off?
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Old 10-10-2011, 07:27 AM   post #9 of 17
duffer72
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

The "pesky oil light" has me wondering if there is a problem there?
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Old 10-11-2011, 12:20 PM   post #10 of 17
kpinnc
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

Quote:
The "pesky oil light" has me wondering if there is a problem there?
Probably not. My 518-H, and many other 5xx tractors do the same. It's caused by the oil pressure sending unit.
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1961 model 701 (x2)
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1972 Bronco 14 Auto
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Old 10-11-2011, 12:37 PM   post #11 of 17
duffer72
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

I wasn't sure if it is the type that kills the engine like on honda engines.
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Old 10-11-2011, 12:42 PM   post #12 of 17
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

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Originally Posted by duffer72 View Post
I wasn't sure if it is the type that kills the engine like on honda engines.
Nah, just the regular on/off sender like on cars with just an oil light.

My M10S Kohler has one of the cutoff style switches though. Oil light comes on, engine dies.
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Onan P216G

1962 WH702

1995 K3500 Silverado
TBI 454

1995 K2500 Silverado
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1994 GMC Sierra Z71
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Old 10-11-2011, 02:33 PM   post #13 of 17
km3h
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

If it were a safety switch the engine would cut off abruptly. It would not slowly die out until it stalled. What happens if you disengage the deck as the engine dies out? Does it come back to life?

Sounds like there is something dragging down the engine. Bad bearing or other worn part. If memory serves me there is a belt on the deck that turns the blades and a separate belt that goes to the PTO thru a mule drive. Everything must be free turning. Do you have the blades on right. I think but I am not sure the mule drive is adjustable for tension on the belt and if after putting the new belt on it is too tight it may cause a problem.
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MEN AND BOYS THE ONLY DIFFERENCE IS THE PRICE OF THEIR TOYS

Wheelhorse 416H
Case 444 and Tiller
Ford LGT165 3 Point
Wheel Horse 417A with Snow Blower
MTD 995 3 Point Hitch
Case 220
Case 444 with 3pt Hitch
1 Craftsman

Wife says I said no and then the fight started!
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Old 10-15-2011, 07:52 AM   post #14 of 17
travisf
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

I would agree with km3h my case just did this saturday it would mow for a couple minutes then the motor would drag down and mowing cease
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Old 10-15-2011, 11:35 AM   post #15 of 17
km3h
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Default Re: Wheel Horse 518-H PTO Engaged Engine Dying

I have a Case 220 that had the same problem. Would run good until I engaged the blades. It would drop a few hundred RPMs but still run on a flat surface. When I tried to cut grass it would die and then I could start it right up again. I found two problems with it. First and hopefully this is your problem, the carburetor was out of adjustment. I adjusted it and it did run noticeably better. It would cut grass, and climb hills but did so slowly and it also smoked a great deal.

Since yours is not smoking it could just be a carburetor adjustment. In my case that did not solve the final problem which were bad rings and a burned piston from running too lean causing heat in the engine.

So first thing I would do is look at the carburetor. If that does not work then you have some work cut out for you in doing further tests.

Are we having fun yet??????
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http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=121970

MEN AND BOYS THE ONLY DIFFERENCE IS THE PRICE OF THEIR TOYS

Wheelhorse 416H
Case 444 and Tiller
Ford LGT165 3 Point
Wheel Horse 417A with Snow Blower
MTD 995 3 Point Hitch
Case 220
Case 444 with 3pt Hitch
1 Craftsman

Wife says I said no and then the fight started!
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