John Deere x320 Hard to Start
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Thread: John Deere x320 Hard to Start

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    John Deere x320 Hard to Start

    Hello all, I'm trying to troubleshoot an issue with my mom's x320. Not incredibly familiar with mechanics/small engines but I'm fairly handy and can usually figure things out with some help from the internet but I've had a hard time tracking this one down.

    So what happens is that when someone goes to start it the battery and all that appears to be good (dash comes on) but it doesn't seem to want to crank over at first. When I listen closely there's a faint noise like it wants to roll over but something's not getting there. Usually if I keep on it by holding the key for a few seconds, letting off, trying again, etc. it'll eventually crank and start up fine. For me it's more of a nuisance than anything but it gets my mother incredibly frustrated every time she tries to mow so I'd like to fix it for her if I can.

    I'm thinking it might be something electrical but not sure where to begin trying to diagnose the problem. I've got some parts ordered to service it that'll get here Friday or Monday so I'm hoping one of the replies here can set me on the right path to trying to troubleshoot it when I head over to her house to do that.

    Thanks, and appreciate any advice that might help me troubleshoot this issue!

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    Difficult to say for sure but given the symptoms you listed, sounds like a weak/dying battery and/or bad connections at the battery.

    Many auto parts stores will test a battery free of charge if you pull it and take it to them. First thing I would check is to see if the battery cables are tight and clean. if not, clean and tighten them. If all looks good, I would pull the battery and have it tested.

    If it's neither of these, I would suggest posting back with a little more info such as age, hours and what kind of maintenance the tractor has had. Also, did this problem just start or has it been difficult to start for a while now? Is the issue new this season, etc.

    Also, I'm assuming that the tractor is out of warranty.

    Good luck
    kylew likes this.

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    xcopterdoc's Avatar
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    A common issue besides the battery is the starter relay and starter solenoid. The starter relay is located in the fuse box, right side, under hood near instrument panel. To find the solenoid, follow the red battery cable. It terminates at the solenoid.
    kylew likes this.

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    The one thing I can say with 100% certainty is that it isn't the battery - I've tried a known good battery and the same issue persists. The tractor is, I think, about 3-4 years old and probably has less than 100 hours on it. I haven't been over there recently to check but can update in the coming days when I do. The issue's been happening for a year and a half or so now.

    I'd like to investigate the starter relay and solenoid but am unsure how to figure out if these are the issues short of replacing them. Is there some sort of diagnostics I can do on both of these parts to determine if they're the issue with a multi-meter or something?

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    Just to update the thread, was over there today and can hear a click when I turn the ignition so it sounds like the relay is hitting. Going to take my multi-meter with me next time I head over and see if I can identify the solenoid as the issue with some troubleshooting info I found on the web for that.

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    Serviced it today and did some diagnostics on the starter relay. Even though I can hear the relay clicking I don't get 12V from the large red wire going from the relay to the solenoid so I suspect this is the issue. Ordered a new one on Amazon which will get here Tuesday so I'll update the thread once it's in with whether or not this worked to help anyone who may come across it in the future with a similar issue.
    romcjr, raco232 and kylew like this.

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