How to Troubleshoot a John Deere 185 Tractor


If you have problems with the operation of your John Deere 185 tractor, take time to troubleshoot the problems before calling a repair service. The problem may be something simple that you can resolve on your own. Always refer to your John Deere 185 Tractor user manual for specifics regarding the particular problem you are experiencing, parts you may need and for a diagram indicating the location of various parts on your tractor.

Things You'll Need

  • Battery
  • Light bulb
  • Transmission oil
  • Gasoline

Fuel Consumption

  • Open the shutoff valve to your gas tank. If it isn't open, your tractor will not receive the proper mixture of air and gasoline. Drain old fuel from your gas tank that may have been sitting over the winter, and replace it with new fuel.

  • Inspect the fuel filter for cleanliness. If the fuel filter is clogged, your tractor will not get the fuel it needs to run.

  • Remove the spark plug after trying to start your tractor. Sniff it to determine if it smells like gasoline. If not, you may have a blockage in your gas line.

  • Inspect the air filter to make sure it is clean. If it is clogged with dirt, the engine will not get the air it needs to start.

Driving Issues

Electrical Issues

  • Push the brake pedal down if the starter does not turn the engine.

  • Replace your battery with a new one if the tractor won't start and the battery terminals appear corroded.

  • Change a burned out bulb if the lights don't operate. Also connect the light plug if it is disconnected.

Chute and Blade Issues

  • Empty grass out of the discharge chute if it gets clogged. If this keeps happening, you may be driving the tractor too fast or trying to cut grass that is too long and wet.

  • Drive more slowly if patches of grass remain uncut. You may also need to sharpen or replace your mower blades.

  • Raise the cutting deck if the grass is getting scalped.

Tips & Warnings

  • Call John Deere at 309-765-8000 for more information.

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