john deere 318 electrical problems

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john deere 318 electrical problems

Tim Bright I have a 318 with front and rear pto. Sometimes neither one will work. If the switch is on neither will click in the clutch. Also I checked the voltage regulator on the center battery pin and it only has about 2 volts and when you go full throttle it goes negative voltage. I put on a new regulator and now it is still the same thing. I checked the stator output and it is about 46 volts a/c. Today I went to start it, it started then died, and I had no power to anything. Battery is new and fully charged. Cleaned the terminals and still nothing. Went back about 10 minutes later and had power. It started and died. Then cranked over but wouldn't start back. Checked and no spark. Got frustrated and went to the house. Went back about 30 minutes later and it started. Put it up and quit.
HELP !!!

Dave Tim - Electrical problems can be real tough to solve on the 318. A few things you've stated seem to contradict themselves. Not saying you are not stating the truth, just saying things on the surface, don't seem to add up.

The first thing I would do, is check ALL the connections at the battery, solenoid (if your 318 has a solenoid - some have a Bendix style starter), at the starter, both PTO switches, the safety swtiches at the brake, seat, and hydro lever (neutral start), and the ignition switch. I would also pull the battery and check the main ground point. (It should be located under the battery pan.) Make sure all connections are free of rust, dirt, grease, paint, whatever. It's a pain, but without going through this step, you may be chasing the problem for awhile.

I would also check both stator leads (the two outside leads at the regulator) for continuity to ground with the switch "off". If there is any continuity, chances are the stator has a short. With a short, it can still register the proper AC voltage, but the DC voltage coming off the regulator will be under spec.

You indicated the battery is new. Is it the proper size? I've seen people put those Wally World lawn tractor batteries in their 318s, and they just don't cut the mustard. Even so, new batteries have been known to be bad.

Whenever you check the voltage regulator output, pull the middle wire from the connection on the regulator, then start the tractor and idle up to full throttle. ALWAYS make sure the ground probe is making good contact to a known ground on the tractor, and then and only then, touch the positive probe to the middle terminal on the regulator. Otherwise, you run the risk of popping the regulator. Been there, done that -- several times. It gets expensive in a hurry.

That should give you enough to keep you busy for a bit. If none of this pans out, post back and I'll try to give you some more ideas. Good luck. - Dave

Tim Bright Thanks a million Dave. The charging problem was either the small ground wire under the battery box or my ignition switch. The ground wire had rust under it and the ignition switch had rust on the lugs and in the connector. The pto clutches was the air gap. By the way, the rear pto clutch is very hard to get to to adjust. Anyway thanks for the advice.
Fred Middleton I have a 318 John Deere tractor- mower, that I have replaced the PTO switch on it, with a new one of course.
Reason I changed it was that when I turn the old PTO switch on, it would kill the engine, shut it off as if you have turned the key and would not engage the clutch either even with just the key switch on and engine not running.
That didn't solve the problem.
Also, on the new switch, it has to be in the on position to kill the engine, were on the old switch it had to be in the off position to kill the engine.
Help, Help.

Frank Dedeo looking to replace my voltage reulator on my john deere 318 but were is located on the tractor
jason I have a 318 john deere tractor and the battery light stays on when running all the time it just start about 3 days ago what could be the problem and today i use it in the dark and had to use my light and the lights went dim.
chuck the voltage regulator is bad, it holds the charge on the battery
chuck it is beside ur coil on the right side of the tractor under the hood. it has 3 connectors (knife blade style.
rich After an hour or so of cutting grass, engine starts mis-firing. Let it cool down, and it is fine again. Coil is good. Help!
Jabo Everything works as it should, but sometimes when I am mowing it is like the pto gets turned off and the blades stop spinning. I can turn it off and then turn it back on again and it will work for a little while and stop again. Any idea what this could be?
Jabo Everything works as it should, but sometimes when I am mowing it is like the pto gets turned off and the blades stop spinning. I can turn it off and then turn it back on again and it will work for a little while and stop again. Any idea what this could be?
Michael Bresson My 318 keeps blowing the 15 amp fuse by the throttle lever. It wants to start and then dies and blows the fuse. Any ideas??
Floyd Scott Pto kills engine when engaged. Have changed pto switch,control module and ignition module. Engine starts and runs, when pto switch is engaged it kils engine. Have tried to trace all wires with ohm meter and everything seems to check out. Very puzzling! Wonder why or if since all switches are new the juice is or is not flowing between the control module to the pto switch. Any comments or ideas would be welcomed. Thanks
Justin Hackett I have a 318 that runs fine for about 10-15 minutes with the PTO engaged but then the engine kills. I can start it up right away and keep mowing and it will kill again. Do I have a fuel issue or an electrical issue. I have adjusted the air gap becuase I was having issues with the PTO engaging. I reset the gap to .18 and the PTO works like a champ. I need help on how to keep it running.Thanks
Scott what is the output voltage supposed to read at the voltage reg and also at the stator leads themselves on at J.D. 318
glen levesque battery light has been on for about 2 weeks, stays on while riding, figured it was letting me know that it's on it's way out,then while doing my leaves, i shut off the pto to empty bags , now i couldn't engage the pto again, and when i shut the tractor down ,now it won't start, turns slow, battery dead, will a new battery solve both issues? or do i have two separate problems? please help, thanks nothing runs like a deere, except for today, Glen
Dennis Melby I have a 318 JD that the charge light stays on and the pto clutch will not ingage. Had the tdc module checked and was told this was bad. I replaced the tdc and the same thing happened. Next I was told if the regulator had voltage at the center post, it was bad . I replaced the voltage regulator, same thing. Light stays on and the pto clutch will not engage. Any help would be appreciated. THANKS
Wade Graham I have the same problem as Glen Levesque,put a new battery in and doing the same thing,put a new battery in and light was out but in a short time battery light was back on.when i mow for a while and shut it off it will not start and when i jump it pto will not start without jumper cables on.could it be the regulator/rectifier?
scott humphrey I have a 318 JD. my problem is getting it started? I have to keep turning the key several times until the little washer in the solenoid finally makes connection to the pos and neg terminals to energize the starter. I had bought a new starter about 3 months ago and it is doing the same thing as the old starter. I am geting 12.2volts to the solenoid to energize the plunger. I have experimented with the starter by disconnecting it from the 12.0volt battery and just energizing the plunger and puttting an ohm meter across the output terminals which did not show any continunity. It seems like the plunger does not get enough force to push into the spring/washer to make connection to the terminals? Could it be my battery (5 years old) not putting out enough current or do you think my solenoid should be replaced? What are your thoughts? Thank you, Scott
Scott Humphrey I found my starter problem. The solenoid for some reason is not getting enough voltage to engage the starter. I found a harness and relay kit(AM107421)from JD and installed it. It cured all my problems. Thanks, Scott
Cory Delp I have a 318 I runs fine, but randomly shuts off. Sometimes it sputters before dying but eventually dies. At that time I have no functioning electric system. after about 15 or 20 seconds the lights come back on and the engive fires right back up. Sometimes I can mow for 3 hours without a problem sometimes ony 5 minutes. once this starts to act up on a given day it happens over and over again. I wonder if something electrical is overheating? Im no electric systems expert, Just looking for some input, Thanks
Don DeSotel I have a john deere 318 tractor and the battery light stays on all the time. I replaced the regulator and the light still stays on. I put new battery in early this year and the tractor starts up just fine. Is there something else i'm missing. I read one of your posts and it said to change the regulator so I did.
John Myers How to wire the pto switch for rear pto? I HAVE OEM WIRING HARNESS
Kris Franz I just inherited a John Deere 318. When I turn on the front PTO, the PTO indicator light stays on. Is this normal?
Kris Franz I just inherited a John Deere 318. When the motor is running, sometimes the battery light will stay on. When I jiggle the key, sometimes it will go off. Is this an ignition switch problem or stator.

dave hi , ive just installed a simple mains to light switch then to main light , but everytime i turn on the light bang goes the electric , ive tried replacing the switch but happens again , not sure as easy as 123 but still light switch blows , now light stays on but when i hit the switch the mains blows , help please , thanks .

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