Sears PTO Clutch Issue


Old 06-25-08, 06:02 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2008
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Sears PTO Clutch Issue

I have a Sears Garden Tractor model 917.251481 with a 18.5 HP Kohler that has an electric clutch (Warner 5215-51). The engine starts to die whenever I engage the clutch, and will keep going if I disengage the button quickly...even with the deck removed. When the engine is off (deck removed) I cannot turn the clutch but 1/2" either direction. The shaft moves when I try to unscrew the clutch. I bought this clutch new last year. How can I tell if its electrical or mechanical? Thanks in advance for helping this old guy.

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Old 06-25-08, 07:21 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 6
Electrical clutch problem

I have recently experienced a like problem. I removed the clutch by placing a pipe wrench on the shaft just above the clutch, then removed the clutch. With an ohm meter check the continuity of the clutch coil, it should register high ohms. Then check each terminal to the clutch case there should be NO continunity. If other wise, its a safe bet the clutch coil is shorted. BTW there's a bracket that keeps the clutch case from moving. Observe its location before you remove the clutch. If your clutch is bad don't order one from Sears. One can be found on the internet at more than half their cost.
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Old 06-26-08, 06:01 AM
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 128
It sounds like you problem is in the safety switch area, like at
the seat.

Old 06-27-08, 12:40 AM
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I agree with Fish...sounds like the seat safety switch. Does it also die when you let off the clutch pedal?
Old 06-29-08, 12:48 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: GA
Posts: 150
It's normal for it to be hard to turn the pulley with the clutch disengaged. The electric clutch has a built-in brake to stop the mower when the clutch is disengaged. The 1/2" movemnet you mentioned sounds about right.

Has this clutch ever worked properly? Can you hear a "click" when you flip the switch?

On my Craftsman tractor, the safety switch on the seat will kill the engine if you try to engage the mower clutch with the seat unoccupied. The switch is closed when the seat is up.

Last edited by rogerflies; 06-29-08 at 03:37 AM.

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