MTD riding mower engine will not crank over

Old 06-28-05, 09:57 AM
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MTD riding mower engine will not crank over

I am at my wit's end on this one. I have an MTD 46" rider (bought in the mid-90s through the now defunct Montgomery Wards) with a 18hp Briggs engine, which will not crank over. Here's what I have done:

1. Installed new spark plugs
2. Installed a new battery
3. Tapped the starter with a hammer

When turning the key, the ignition makes that "clicking" sound but the engine doesn't crank. I even tap the starter while turning the ignition, but to no avail. At best, I might get a slight crank, but nothing more. The battery is charged, the cables are hooked up properly, and yes there is gas in the tank.

Perhaps I need a new starter? If I try jumping it with my car, might that help? Is there an alternative way to crank the engine vs using the ignition key?

Old 06-28-05, 10:22 AM
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Sounds like it is most likely the solenoid or possibly the starter gear is not disengaging the flywheel.
Find the starter solenoid, should be located under the panel where the Fwd-Rev lever is on a gear drive or where the hydro release and park brake set is on hydrostatic drive. It could also be under the pedestal...follow the postive lead from the battery, it will connect on the other end to the solenoid. Couple ways to test.
1. Ensure SAFETY!!!! Check that the starter gear is not engaged with the flywheel! Shrouds may need to be removed for inspection.
2. Using a jumper (screwdriver or similar) jump the two posts on the solenoid briefly, the starter should engage and turn if battery and connections are suffecient. If it does.../if it does not *
3. Using a jumper wire supply 12v from the + battery to the small spade terminal on the solenoid. If it clicks or does not attempt to crank...the solenoid is bad. If it does crank then the key switch or wiring needs to be looked at for cause.

*4. If the starter will not crank by jumping the posts on the solenoid, connections are most likely the cause. With a jumper cable (A car jumper cable not a wire as can be used in step 3) Connect the + battery to the post on the solenoid that goes to the starter briefly. If it cranks the cable from battery to solenoid and connections is suspect.
If not jump from battery to post on the starter, if it cranks check cable and connections from solenoid to starter.
If still not, starter connection to ground or starter itself needs checked.
Old 06-28-05, 03:00 PM
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also known as a starter RELAY
Old 06-28-05, 11:44 PM
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Side note: There is a good chance that you now need a starter since hitting it with a hammer. There are fragile ceramic-type magnets just inside the starter case that break easily upon impact.

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