Saturday, my 1025r started up as normal and I drove it to the barn intending to put my MMM on, hit the lift button to put the knob in Install postion, and all the dash lights flashed on and off and then went out and the engine died. Then nothing electrical would work.
Checked all the fuses, good. Checked battery voltage with volt meter, nearly 13 volts. After a few minutes I turned the key on again and the dash lights would all flash for a minute and the tach needle jump back and forth, then everything would go dead again.
I knew it acted like a dead battery but volt meter said no. Couldn't get to where I could check it under load. This all couldn't have happened in a worse place 'cause where I had the deck stored was close quarters and I could hardly get around the tractor to do anything. Needed to get it started so I could drive it back to the shop where I would have room to work and tools.
Managed to get a battery charger on it and could tell by the meter that the battery was not taking a charge. Decided that if it was the battery that was bad I would need to connect another one at least temporarily to be able to move the tractor back to the shop. I remembered that I had one of the small emergency jump-start batteries in my truck that is just a little bit bigger than my Iphone.
Heck, the battery clamps are almost as big as the battery.
Had never tried to use it and wasn't too confident that it could actually start an engine, but had nothing to lose by trying it.
Lo and behold, that little battery started it right up. Once it was running I was afraid to disconnect the jump-battery so I carefully placed it where I thought it would ride safely, and slowly eased the tractor back to the shop. There I turned the key off and dis-connected the jump-battery and everything was dead again.
The battery placement in the 1025r is a PITA. It's like having to lift a lead block out of a well. There wasn't enough clearance for my battery carrier to get down to it. Finally just had to get hold of the battery the best way I could and was about half-way up with it when it became clear that at least one of the headlights would have to be removed before it would clear. Finally got it out after removing the light, while trying not to hit the fins on the oil cooler. At least the hold-down (rubber bungee) is easy to remove.
Once on the bench I put a load tester on the battery, it read nearly 13 volts but as soon as I hit the load it dropped to less than half a volt. I thought I had had every kind of battery failure there was over the years, but this is the first time I've ever had one die while driving. And the tractor is only a little over 2 years old (May of 2014) with 82 hours.
By now was getting late so decided to quit for the day. Sunday I started checking online for a battery. JD dealer was closed of course, and maybe tomorrow being a holiday, doubt that they would have one anyway. Batteries Plus showed to have a replacement but my store didn't have one. Only place I could find that had one was O'Reillys so went and got it and installed, tractor working again.
This battery size (group 22nf) is listed everywhere I found as a Lawn and Garden battery and the CCA and CA ratings are less than JD's, which seems to mean that John Deere wants you to only buy their battery. But since mine only lasted 2 years I'm not too impressed with their ratings. I guess time will tell whether I should be or not.
Probably should have just used the jump-battery in it, but would need a much shorter bungee hold-down.