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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was cutting my grass. It was very wet but had to be cut due to all the rain. The mower now quits when I engage the deck. It runs until I engage and then it dies. I also get the battery indicator light when I engage.
 

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Carefully jack the front of your tractor up and check to see if the under side of your deck is packed with grass clippings. This would really be the case if you mulch.

I would have to guess that you have so much grass under there from it being wet that its stopping your blades from turning.

If thats not the case, try to turn each of the blades when its in the air. Could be a bad bearing.
 

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I agree with Brian. You might also want to check the seat safety switch, which would have no connection to cutting wet grass. But, I believe if the seat switch is defective, the engine will quit when the mower is switched on. You can troubleshoot the switch by disconnecting the harness from the switch and using a jumper wire between two female terminals on the harness.
 

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I will throw another one into the mix. My first thought was the PTO switch. I would also check the deck as Brian suggests. Let us know how it turns out.
 

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Hi! First off, I'm jealous that you got to mow your lawn. Even if it was a little wet. We've had so much rain since the snow melted I'm going to need a baler by the time I get out there! I had this problem last year and after checking the belts to the deck, cleaning grass clippings from under the deck, and many frustrating calls to my Dad. (see DRobinson comment). We did find out that it was the switch under the seat, we replaced that and have had no problems since! I hope that is your problem because it was easy to change and not very expensive. Good luck!
 

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I have to concurr with the majority, here. Obstructed blades or seat switch failure.:thumbup1gif:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Carefully jack the front of your tractor up and check to see if the under side of your deck is packed with grass clippings. This would really be the case if you mulch.

I would have to guess that you have so much grass under there from it being wet that its stopping your blades from turning.

If thats not the case, try to turn each of the blades when its in the air. Could be a bad bearing.
I bypassed the safety switch under the seat. I cleaned the deck and it's still doing the same thing. As soon as I engage the mower deck it kills the engine and I don't get my battery or oil light until i wiggle around the wires at the ignition and it sounds as if a relay kicks in and I get my lights again. The procedure is the same over and over. It seems to be in the switch area. It's never been replaced in 25 years. Is there PTO wires I could also check? Thanks much.
 

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From www.jdparts.com in case you didn't know about it...there is a quick tutorial in my signature if you need help with it. One hint: Think like a parts guy...it's the same basic system the parts counter uses at the dealer, and it's FREE:yahoo:

It sure sounds like you have at least gotten close to finding the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I've had to replace my Ignition switch several times, over the years, but I've used After-Market that can be had for under $20-! Might be worth a 'gamble'! ~S

http://search.aol.com/aol/search?query=John+Deere+318+ignition+switch&s_it=keyword_rollover
Scotty, you're spot on. It was the ignition. Not so much the switch, but I pulled the plugs off and cleaned them and it now works fine. I sure am appreciatlve for all the imput. It was all good and I have now made notes of the answers you provided. I have also made this site a favorite, as it truly is.
 
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