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Kawasaki or Kohler engine??


lkkeo's Avatar
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01-17-09, 01:00 PM   #1  
Kawasaki or Kohler engine??

Looking to buy riding lawn mower. Was told by John Deere that Kawasaki are best engines to have. Went to price a Cub Cadet and they told me that Kohler is the best engine, even better than Kawasaki..... Heellllpppp!!!!!! I don't mind paying alittle extra, just want a good machine to mow my 3 acres....:

 
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indypower's Avatar
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01-17-09, 01:24 PM   #2  
Both of those engines are good, reliable engines. Much better than B&S. Don't decide by the engine. Decide by the dealer who will service the equipment you buy.
Does the dealer have a good inventory of parts?
What is the average turn around time?
Does the dealer have a lot of "fixed it right the first time" customers?
Best way to get the facts is from previous and current customers. Ask friends, co-workers about their dealings with the dealers.

 
Airman's Avatar
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01-17-09, 02:19 PM   #3  
They are both good engines. I would choose Kohler over Kawasaki simply because Kohler provides better technical support and parts are more readily available.

 
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01-17-09, 04:47 PM   #4  
Posted By: indypower Both of those engines are good, reliable engines. Much better than B&S. Don't decide by the engine. Decide by the dealer who will service the equipment you buy.
Does the dealer have a good inventory of parts?
What is the average turn around time?
Does the dealer have a lot of "fixed it right the first time" customers?
Best way to get the facts is from previous and current customers. Ask friends, co-workers about their dealings with the dealers.
The above is EXCELLENT advise. Don't buy based on a specific engine brand or color paint, look at the folks you will need service from. Check that the tractor meets all your needs, fits you physically, can be fitted with any attachments you might need in the future. Kohler makes a couple of different levels of motors. I personally like Kohler motors over Kawasaki because I can get parts easier/cheaper/ quicker, but that may not be true in your neck of the woods.

 
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01-17-09, 09:24 PM   #5  
Both engines are good choices and will give good service with proper maintenance.

My personal preference is Kawasaki, it's kinda like the Ford vs Chevy you will find a fairly equal following on both sides, and I can't say either one is right or wrong. They both have pros and cons but are both very good power plants.

 
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01-18-09, 08:26 AM   #6  
I will try to ad some clarification to my previous post. If you are a DIY person who maintains and repairs his own equipment Kohler offers free download of service manuals on their website, Kawasaki does not. To me this is a Kohler advantage.

Get the engine model number from each engine, pick a part, call local dealers, and see if parts are available. In my area of Northeast Tennessee Kawasaki, parts are scarce as hen’s teeth. Kohler parts are more common and easier to find.

Kohler makes several grades of engines. The lower grade engines can be found in lesser grade JDs and Cubs. I do not know if Kawasaki does the same.

Cub Cadet and John Deere make cheaper (residential) versions of their tractors. In fact, some, not all, Cub Cadets are manufactured by MTD and are not the quality of a real Cub Cadet. The John Deere’s sold from the big box stores, I have worked on, are not the quality of JD sold through JD dealers. I had heard the L100 series JDs are actually made in a separate plant from the others.

I do not agree with Indypower’s assessment of Briggs and Stratton. Briggs & Stratton is the world’s largest producer of gasoline engines for outdoor power equipment (OPE). They like others make several quality grades of engines. I think they get a bad rap simply because of the sheer number of engines they manufacture for low grade OPE. These engines are not designed for long-term use. Some have an operating life of only 300 hours and are found on low-end equipment.

 
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01-18-09, 10:22 AM   #7  
I agree with Airman, you should check availability in your area for parts, and the ability to find service manuals for Kohler online is a big plus. I have not had any problems with Kawasaki parts in my area, but different distributors provide different service so your area may be different.

Best of Luck...

 
cheese's Avatar
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01-19-09, 04:41 PM   #8  
I'll echo the same sentiment. Both are very good. I believe Kawasaki is a marginally better built engine in general and is probably likely to require less repair over it's lifetime. Kawasaki parts can get pretty darn expensive though, and not always readily available as mentioned. Kohler is domestic still as far as I know, so that's another reason to buy one of theirs. In my opinion, if those engines are what you've narrowed your choices down to, you'll be happy with whatever you decide.

One more wrench to toss in the works.... Briggs and Stratton also has an engine that will hold it's own against kawasaki. It's the vanguard series v-twins. They are Japanese built. I think Daihatsu is the one building them for Briggs. Parts are generally common enough and the engine is among the best of the best if you ask me. I personally know of one 14hp vanguard briggs that has been on and worn out 3 mower frames and still runs like new on the fourth frame. I think the X300 deere is using vanguards. (good mower aside from the plastic hood).


"Who is John Galt?" - Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

God bless!

 
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04-06-13, 10:32 PM   #9  
mower engines

looking at buying toro zero turn with kawasaki engine have had briggs and stratton 25 years old and still runs had put slick 50 in it frame and body fallen apart. ready for newer mower

 
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