John Deere Riding Mower Won’t Go Forward Or Reverse: Reason & Fix

There are various reasons that describe why John Deere riding mower won’t go forward or reverse. And it can be a nightmare! It’s the mowing season but it’s not working!

You are not alone. Apparently, lots of John Deere’s owners face this same issue. But it’s not that bad and there are some easy fixes!

So, in this article, I will talk about those problems and what to do about them. Sure, regular maintenance of the mower can help it to work effectively, but there are other things to learn!

Why Your John Deere Riding Mowers Will Not Move Forward Or Reverse?

john deere won't move forward or reverse

Every riding mower has a significant life span, after which it either stops working or does not work efficiently. Proper maintenance is required for every mower to make it work effectively.

John Deere riding mowers can become stuck and not move forward or reverse due to three main reasons.

  • Clogged Fuel or Air Filters

The fuel and air filters of the riding mowers may become clogged and negatively impact the mower’s performance. When a fuel filter is blocked, it keeps away the gasoline from flowing to the mower’s engine in enough supply.

This results in the lawn mower stop working. A clogged or damaged air filter causes the engine to overheat quickly. This can also prevent a lawn mower from moving forward or reverse.

Your mower engine may get damaged permanently if the fuel and air filters are not changed or cleaned regularly.

  • Some Issues In The Battery Or Carburetor

When the battery in your mower dies or fails, the mower tends to stop working. A weak battery may start the mower, but it may not have enough power to drive it.

Therefore, the John Deere mower may start but shut down soon once the power demand on the engine increases. Riding mowers that use carburetors, gasoline to air mixtures may become damaged permanently if the filters are not changed regularly.

  • Transmission Failure

Problems related to the transmission of your mower can lead to an inability to shift gears. This, in turn, may prevent the mower from moving forward or reverse.

There is also a possibility of the mower getting stuck in one gear for transmission failure or damage. Shifting problems may also occur due to leaks in the transmission lines or fluid reservoirs.

If not repaired on time, the problem may cascade to the engine components like sticking valves and pistons.

Are you still wondering why won’t your riding mower go forward or reverse? The above are all the possible reasons. Apart from the above issues, you may face other John Deere mower problems in the future!

What are those?

Common John Deere Riding Mowers Problems

John Deere has an excellent reputation for producing high-quality commercial-grade mowers and is also considered one of the top lawn mowers’ manufacturers. But even top-quality items come with some problems.

The John Deere mowers come with a hefty price tag and experience difficulty while climbing hills. However, it is expected that manufacturers will be able to reduce such problems soon.

Here is a list of some problems that are associated with John Deere riding mowers.

  • Price- Along with their high-quality products, they are also responsible for setting a hefty price tag. Competitors sell mowers at the price of $1500 or under, whereas John Deere mowers start from $3000. This is a massive drawback for the market of John Deere mowers.
  • Safety- John Deere also had a fair share of safety recalls, just like most huge companies. Consumers reported that when the brake was applied to the mowers, it veered left, creating a significant safety hazard. Hence, it is recommended that before purchasing any mower, you must check the US Consumer Product Safety Commission website for any recalls.
  • Difficulty while climbing hills- Some consumers complained that their John Deere riding mowers face difficulty in climbing hills. Though some hills are too steep to ride a mower, some consumers have reported that their John Deere mowers cannot climb the small hills.

How To Repair The John Deere Riding Mower?

john deere zero turn won't reverse or move forward

John Deere riding mower may stop moving forward or reverse due to clogged fuel or air filters, transmission failure, or battery/carburetor problem.

Here are some repairs that may help you solve the problems you face while driving your John Deere mowers.

  • Replace the drive belt- When your lawn mower does not move or slows down while climbing the hills, you must reinstall the driving belt if you find it has slipped out of place. If it is damaged, try replacing it.
  • Replace the carburetor assembly- It is necessary to replace the carburetor if you notice that the engine is not starting or the engine is running rough. This proves that the gas or air mix is not balanced.
  • Rebuild the engine carburetor- Seals and gaskets in the carburetor wear out and leaks gas. Hence, you may use a carburetor rebuild kit to renovate a clogged or leaking carburetor.
  • Tune-up the engine of your riding mower- When you witness uneven cuts while mowing the lawn, tune-up the engine of your mower. Replace the engine oil, air filter, oil filter, spark plug, and fuel filter.
  • Replace the seat and the seat switch- A mower seat engages the seat switch to keep the engine running when you sit on the seat. Replace a broken or damaged seat as it may not engage the seat switch. As a result, it can cause the engine to shut off when you release the brake. Also, replace the seat switch if you notice it is plugged in but not recognizing your presence on the seat.

Following the above steps, you will be able to restart your riding mower again and drive it as well. Now, watch this video to move your lawnmower again!

How Long Can A Well Maintained John Deere Lawn Mower Last?

Homeowners use riding lawn mowers to cut a large track of lawns evenly and efficiently without any extra backbreaking effort.

Such machines use similar components to automobiles, and just like automobiles, these mowers can also encounter several problems that may impact the performance.

John Deere produces and sells riding mowers because consumers prefer a lawnmower at a certain price point, and it should work fine for at least 8 to 10 years.

A lawn mower with a smaller horsepower should give 500-1000 hours only if used and maintained properly. Engines with twin cylinders will last longer than engines having a single-cylinder, just like a V6 truck engine that lasts longer than a four-cylinder mini car engine.

A classic riding mower can clock up 1.5 hours of cutting once every week, almost for eight months. This makes it 45 hours a year. Therefore, based on this calculation, a well-maintained mower can last for more than 15 years.

Though the average life span of a John Deere riding mower is ten years, still depending on your use and maintenance, it may work effectively for more than the average life span.

Final Thoughts

Not just John Deere, every mower has problems. A mower is just like other vehicles, which, if services correctly, can give you a better life span.

If you have a vast lawn and are planning to buy a John Deere riding mower to cut down the lawn efficiently, this article will help you know everything about riding mowers.

Here we have discussed why your John Deere riding mower won’t go forward or reverse and the process of maintaining your riding mowers so that it works effectively throughout.

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