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Discussion Starter #1
I LOVE my old L175.

I am having a continuing saga of some starting issues and I am trying to sort out where to go next:

It has always been a bit tough to start - when I first got it, it took pulling out the compression release, winding up the starter and then firing her up (after sufficient glow plug, of course).

Replaced the battery -- for about a year, it started right up first time, every time, then back to old tricks. I used a trickle charger, the "Start **** You" (55 amp engine starter) and the truck to get it jumped and running.

Next trick was that it would not start at all, no matter what I did, so I had the deisel repair guy come out. He took a look, shook his head and said it was the alternator/generator - which peeved me because I had already deterimined that was the case and had a new one on hand - but could NOT get it to fit and was just doing the Hail Mary. He gave me the name of a rebuild place, where they rebuilt and painted that alternator. (Of course, the one the guy told me would for sure fit had a $100 restocking fee -- jerk). This helped some for the first few months, then we went back to needing trickle charger, "Start **** You" and truck.

Just had a friend - who is a deisel mechanic - come take a look while he was vacationing here. He checked out the battery, alternator, connections, etc and scratched his head and thinks it could be that the ignition switch (which is weird - doesn't stop in any of the positions right).


SO, I'm figuring on buying a new battery (the current one is 2012, so it's time) and replacing the ignition switch -- unless there could be something I'm missing...?

:banghead3:



P.S. this means that I have an alternator - brand new - for cheap...
 

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Hello Lisa.
A couple questions to try and determine overall condition.
Do you know the hr's on the tractor?
Once it's running does it smoke alot? Continue all the time or stop once it's warmed up?
Does it use an oil,how much?
Do you have a multimeter?
Does the ign switch shutdown the engine or do yo have to pull the shutdown out then turn the switch off?

1st test is to check the charging voltage.
1) Before doing anything use the meter to read the battery voltage. Should see 12.0 - 12.7 volts. If under 12.0 volts charge the battery. Under 12v = hard starting.
2) With meter still connected, turn on glow plugs. Should see the voltage drop, perhaps as much as to 7-8 volts. This is a rough reading to see of the glowplugs are working.
If the volts don't drop, it's a good bet the glow plugs are bad - or - the wiring to them is bad -or- there could be a blown fuse. Bad glowplug circuit = hard starting....
3) Start engine, with throttle set halfway and meter on battery you should read 12.6 to 13.6 volts. Basically the reading should be higher than the 1st reading on the battery before you did anything. This indicates whether your alternator is charging.
No charging = dead battery.

Theres many things that would need to be checked if it's not charging, loose wiring, corroded wiring connectors, BAD GROUND (capitalized as most common culprit), blow fuses (if equipped), loose fan belt.

Batteries can go anywhere from 4 to 8 yrs or even longer but the common lifespan anymore is 4-5 yrs. They lose their ability to hold a charge. If just one cell goes bad the battery is toast.
Your battery is 6 yrs old, you can take it to a FLAPS and they can load test it but it probably should be replaced.

Make sure all the battery connections are good and tight and not corroded, the battery ground strap is good and tight and not corroded where it connects to the tractor and the battery positive cable is connected good and tight to the starter and not corroded.

re. the new alternator you've got, list it on your local craigslist.
Good luck
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hello Lisa.
A couple questions to try and determine overall condition.
Do you know the hr's on the tractor? No. None of the gauges or dash lights work. Arnie is a sweet old tractor (1979)
Once it's running does it smoke alot?nope. No Smoke. Continue all the time or stop once it's warmed up?
Does it use an oil,how much?Not really an oil burner
Do you have a multimeter?Yup! :)
Does the ign switch shutdown the engine or do yo have to pull the shutdown out then turn the switch off?THIS is likely the problem. I have *always* shut off the key and taken it out when the tractor is running. I was told by the guy I bought it from something about that, but I don't recall what - something about a generator...?

1st test is to check the charging voltage.
1) Before doing anything use the meter to read the battery voltage. Should see 12.0 - 12.7 volts. If under 12.0 volts charge the battery. Under 12v = hard starting.:tango_face_glasses:check
2) With meter still connected, turn on glow plugs. Should see the voltage drop, perhaps as much as to 7-8 volts. This is a rough reading to see of the glowplugs are working.
If the volts don't drop, it's a good bet the glow plugs are bad - or - the wiring to them is bad -or- there could be a blown fuse. Bad glowplug circuit = hard starting....Haven't checked that yet. On it.
3) Start engine, with throttle set halfway and meter on battery you should read 12.6 to 13.6 volts. Basically the reading should be higher than the 1st reading on the battery before you did anything. This indicates whether your alternator is charging.yeah. It isn't charging - dunno why
No charging = dead battery.

Theres many things that would need to be checked if it's not charging, loose wiring, corroded wiring connectors, BAD GROUND (capitalized as most common culprit), blow fuses (if equipped), loose fan belt. all checked and rechecked and checked again by my deisel guy

Batteries can go anywhere from 4 to 8 yrs or even longer but the common lifespan anymore is 4-5 yrs. They lose their ability to hold a charge. If just one cell goes bad the battery is toast.
Your battery is 6 yrs old, you can take it to a FLAPS and they can load test it but it probably should be replaced.I had figured this would not be a horrible first step. Going to run it in as soon as I either get it started to raise the bucket or take the bonnet off. :)

Make sure all the battery connections are good and tight and not corroded, the battery ground strap is good and tight and not corroded where it connects to the tractor and the battery positive cable is connected good and tight to the starter and not corroded.

re. the new alternator you've got, list it on your local craigslist.
Good luck
Dave
Thank you for your input. Will get back to this when I have answers
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Does anyone know where I can get a parts list for a VERY limited production tractor like the L175? I am thinking I should replace the ignition switch and want to make sure I get the right part.

Also, does anyone know whether I *should* be able to shut off the ginition switch, take the key out and have the tractor keep running?
 

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Heres a link to the work shop manual for your tractor series: file:///C:/Users/ME/Downloads/L175%20L210%20L225%20L225DT%20L260%20WSM.pdf
"Also, does anyone know whether I *should* be able to shut off the ginition switch, take the key out and have the tractor keep running?"
Short answer is yes, the key doesn't shut the engine down....

I skimmed through the electrical section and the schematic doesn't show a key shutdown solenoid which indicates to me that the key doesn't shut the engine down. Most of the older pre-safety switch diesel tractors all use a engine shutdown knob that you usually have to pull out for shutdown. So, your proper shutdown procedure would be to pull the knob out until the engine shuts down then turn the key off. Leaving the key on will discharge/kill the battery.

I couldn't find an operators manual on your model but did find one for the L235/L275 series which is similar. It indicates then shutdown procedure just like I stated above. Heres a link: file:///C:/Users/ME/Downloads/L235-L275%20Ops.pdf

It also discusses pulling the decompression knob out in cold weather or when using a weak battery to allow the engine to spin faster and to push the knob back in to allow the engine to start. It's listed in section 5 Instrument panel and controls.

Your key switch could be bad BUT if it's providing voltage to the regulator, hour meter and oil pressure switch, Lights, glowplugs and starter I wouldn't suspect it being bad.
The schematic is on page 53 of the L175 WSM.

Messicks seems to have a parts manual listed for the L175. Heres a link: https://www.messicks.com/wiki/kubota/l175
You may have to register to see it.

Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you so much, Volfandt!

I am realizing that I have known most of this stuff -- but real life and not Book Learnin'. Now to put it all together. My bet is that the battery is older and sluggish and there is something either wrong with the alternator (it was just rebuilt) or the alternator connection. WIll be checking that out -- as soon as the shade moves back around to ol' Arnie (so named because the truck is Bart, so we have Bart and Arnie)
 
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