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post #5 of Old 08-08-2019, 08:38 PM
AKA Moses Lawnagan
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Newton, NC
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Re: JD 318 PTO will not engage - bad connections

Originally Posted by CantKeepUp View Post
OK, I feel stupid for asking because I've seen many many posts where some one has answered this, but I'm getting tired searching thru posts to find those responses. So my apologies ahead of time.

Two weeks ago I threw the PTO switch and the PTO didn't engage. The PTO light on the cluster did not come on either. I began troubleshooting by checking for voltage to the PTO coil - no voltage. As I was about to start checking other things, the PTO just pulled in...and held in while I mowed. I figured I hadn't seen the last of the issue...

Last night I was one minute away from finishing and the PTO cut out. Again, the PTO indication on the cluster was out, so I'm quite certain that the clutch and coil are not the issue. It's not the seat switch because the engine starts and runs. It was getting dark, so I didn't check anything yet. I assume I'm looking for a bad connection or bad ground wire. Can you name any particular connections or places to begin looking?
Originally Posted by PA318Guy View Post
Have you checked the gap on the PTO? The gap is supposed to be .018 and if not set correctly will cause PTO to disengage when voltage drops. However, I agree that you may want to check your battery and ensure a full charge before using PTO. Your Voltage Regulator may not be returning enough electric to the battery to keep it charged while running, this will also cause the symptoms you provided.
PA318Guy has it nailed. My '84 318 was doing just what you described, and after reading his sort of answers, I re-gapped my PTO and problem solved.....pretty much. Mine will engage after I first start up, and will stay engaged for as long as I want to mow, as long as I don't turn the PTO off after the engine has warmed up. Once I do that, I have to stop and let the tractor cool down before it will engage again. I attribute that to the gap closing too much as the PTO heats up, so I may see if I can open the gap a tiny bit, but I set it as close to 0.018 as I could get. I may just have to be happy a 35 year old tractor still works at all.

'09 JD 2520, CX200 loader and 62D deck
LP RTR0550 rototiller
?? 60" box blade
Simplicity 10" plow adapted to 3-pt hitch
3-point PTO DR wood chipper

'02 JD GT235, 48C deck

'84 JD 318, 50" deck

'86 JD 214, 46" deck

'86 JD 212, 38" deck

'08 X748SE, gone but not forgotten
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