John Deere 345 Garden Tractor Start Problem
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Thread: John Deere 345 Garden Tractor Start Problem

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    John Deere 345 Garden Tractor Start Problem

    Problem:

    Tried to start tractor; turned key to start, got a click (I suspect from the solenoid), and then nothing – dead as a stone. Subsequent attempts to start were unsuccessful…no click, no response. Following this occurrence I checked battery voltage as 12.6+ volts.

    Diagnosis thus far using JD Technical Manual TM1760 for 325, 335 and 345 Lawn and Garden Tractors:

    I began with Power Circuit Diagnosis – 345, on pg. 6-70, and found 12.64, 12.57 and 12.50 volts at Test Locations 1. battery + terminal, 2. solenoid battery terminal, and 3. X1 connector. I was unable to access Test Location 4, voltage regulator/rectifier battery terminal as the harness and connector are within the inaccessible space beneath the battery. For Test Location 5, delay module, with the connector disconnected, no battery voltage.

    I’ve done a few other tests. I have tested the seat switch (pg 6-132) to be O.K.. Also, the PTO/RIP switch (pg 6-131) tests O.K.. I have not tried the brake/neutral start switch test (pg 6-130), yet.

    I have also done the starter solenoid test (pg 6-125), although I have a question about the procedure. Test results: failed both parts of the testing. But, here comes my question about the procedure, and it relates to the ground connection to the engine. On the right side of the tractor, behind the oil fill/oil drain, the negative cable from the battery as well as two other ground wires are secured to the engine crankcase by means of a nut. Step 6 of the test procedure is: “Remove spark plug high tension lead(s) and ground to the engine.” I removed *all* grounds before continuing with the test…is that correct?

    The first solenoid test connects a jumper to the positive battery terminal and briefly jumping to the spade terminal on the solenoid…if the starter runs (it did not), solenoid is good (so I figure it is not good). The procedure continues …starter does not run; go to the next test which is connecting the jumper between the two solenoid large terminals. Did that; result: starter did not run…if the starter did run the conclusion would be to replace the solenoid. And, if the starter did not run; replace starter. ? ? ? Replace both starter and solenoid?

    Other tests recommended? The brake/neutral start switch test?

    Any help/insight/suggestions of direction in which to proceed would be much appreciated. Need more information?

    Thanks and Regards,

    Robert Chambers
    Corinth, Vermont

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  3. Top | #2
    felixm22's Avatar
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    I would have a helper crank the engine while you check the voltage at the battery. My guess the battery is putting out the correct voltage but can't keep it up with a real load. I would also check the +,- battery cables, older cables may appear to be good but have corroded on the inside not allow for enough current to flow.


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    Johndeereman1950's Avatar
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    Did you try to jump start it? Battery may just be low as pointed out above.
    Also, I have had to replace those coils with the plug wire attached. One went at a time so it ran very rough on my 335.
    - Tim

    "If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.” Mark Twain

    2014 JD 5055D, Johhny Popper Model B, JD 216, JD 335

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    Fixed ! With a New Battery

    Quote Originally Posted by Johndeereman1950 View Post
    Did you try to jump start it? Battery may just be low as pointed out above.
    Also, I have had to replace those coils with the plug wire attached. One went at a time so it ran very rough on my 335.
    Hello and Many Thanks to felixm22 and Johndeereman1950,

    After fussing with it a bit, which included turning the key to try to start it several times, I noticed that the battery voltage dropped to about 10.3 volts. That told me that one of the cells was dropping out, and in turn, made me think how old the battery was...the answer: 7 or 8 years! Went to my JD dealer this morning and bought a new battery. Put it in...and...VAROOM! All is well again.

    Thanks for posting and Best Regards,

    RC in VT

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    etcallhome's Avatar
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    Take the battery to Auto zone , Advance Auto , or some other shop and have your battery tested. Guessing it is defective.

    Just read your post after posting mine. Good to hear it is fixed because of a deft battery.
    Last edited by etcallhome; 10-22-2014 at 03:39 PM.
    Gene

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