John Deere Lawn Tractor L130 - rapidly dying hydrostatic drive

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John Deere Lawn Tractor L130 - rapidly dying hydrostatic drive

nzo Over the last 6 months, I've noticed the hydrostatic drive getting weaker and weaker, to the point where if the ride-on has been mowing for an hour or less it cannot get up slopes it used to handle with ease. If I continue mowing I'll be lucky to get the machine back to base.

Two years ago, about 2 years after purchasing the new L130, I noticed the same problem, resulting in the John Deere agency replacing the hydrostatic transmission under warranty.

I expressed my concern at the time that the same fault may happen again, with us having to foot the out-of-warranty bill next time. The agency's response was that this was most likely a 'one-off'.

When I contacted them before Christmas about the present problem, the service guy said, "Oh, we don't bother repairing these transmissions - we just throw them out and put in a new one."

This did not reassure me at all, and made me wonder how many other L130 owners are being taken to the cleaners by John Deere with having to replace their transmissions about once every two years!

It also makes me wonder if there is some underlying fault in this transmission that JD are not being straight about.

Any insights very much appreciated :)

Shawn Have you had your drive belt and idlers checked. A lot of times the idler will seize and cause the belt to slip which heats it up and then causes it to expand in length which will also cause the transmission to seem to slip. Just a inexpensive thought to try looking at.
nzo Thanks Shawn. Yes, we've checked the drive belt/idlers.
matthew hi i have a deere L130 doing the same thing mow about 10.min and hope you make it back!! it will quit pulling and whine on flat ground. so i called jd and thet said it needs a new trans $600.00 what gets me is two years ago we bought it new for $ 1,600.00 hoping to get a relible mower for years to come and it is a "pile of crap" i am mowing with my old murry now .
kyle yes I had to replace my trany too it happened at about the 23 month period, so i was lucky, I think the early ones are junk cause the mower has about 400 hours since the trany, it now has 780 hrs and runs better then it did when it was new. However I had replaced every moving part except the motor since, I guess the good thing is the parts are cheap!!!
Bob Color me "in the same boat". I have a L130 that is aflicted with the same problem. Has anyone found a fix other than replacing the tranny through JD? After the way JD has treated me, I can't find it in my heart to buy from them unless I have to.
TIA, Bob

glen ross Mine is in its 4th year and has begun to make a whining sound and not pull hills that it used to pull easily. I will try replacing the drive belt but I'm not optimistic. I have 211 hours on the machine and have carefully maintained it.
Mark My L130 is on its last leg. I thought it was the drive belt but no such luck. JD must have known there was a heating problem because punched in the tranny mounts is a hole on the left side that is exactly big enough for a garden hose. So, I drive it for 20 to 30 minutes and then pull in for a pit stop and put the hose in the hole and spray cold water over the tranny for 5 minutes and I can go again for 30 minutes. John Deere promised me (and I quote) my hills were no problem for this meaty of a machine - unquote.
Ed I have a John Deere L-130 lawn tractor with almost 300 hrs & it won't go up a small grade after about a half hour of cutting the grass! Trans gets so hot you can't touch the bottom casing!Then You can not make it any where even on flat ground! Thanks John Deere for making a Great Lawn Tractor! Now What are all of us John Deere lovers going to do!
Joe I just bought a K66 Transaxle to replace the wimppy one in my L130 read about the convertion on my tractor forom .com real good reading there
Bill Adams Boy am I lucky to have hit this site tonight,
I was close to buying a 2005 L130 this week end. It appears I have some questions to ask. The tractor looks great, but this could up set the deal for sure. I think everyone should take this to John Deere and push for a recall. Have you ever seen the add about discount tire? When the little old lady doesn't get satisfaction, she send the tire through the window. I'm not suggesting that, but maybe a place for everyone to sign a patition and give to the dealers. That would make me feel better than doing nothing if I had boughten the L130 today.
Sorry, but Thanks in the same breath.

Tom This is happening to all of these models. John Deere says they are not made to pull big grades. They will be glad to put in a new transmission just like the one that is in it. If I pay that is. It WILL happen again. There is an upgrade on E-Bay for 1600.00 that is supposed to make the LA models perform a lot better than new. They are not affiliated with John Deere so maybe its true. I have a brand new looking mower that works for 15 minutes. I will never ever buy another John Deer product!!!!!!!!
Tom The upgrade is the K66 so if I do this I will have 3600.00 in this $2000.00 mower. I will probably do it but, I will tell you this, you won't see the words John Deere anywhere on my mower. Heck I may even paint it red!
Dave Lester bOUGHT USED jd.l 130 piece of junk transmission why don't your Dealers tell us the problem so we don't get screwed by buying what we are told is a good used machine.Been all checked out everything is good .Right got it home mowed half hour tractor wouldn't pull its self contacted dealer would not help me.So rest assure i tell every one i know don't buy this tractor with this transmission.The dealers are aware of this problem and not being upfront and telling me about this now i paid 1500.00 for a piece of junk thats no good .will never buy another one cant trust your dealers to be honest. No better know to bad i got burnt Dave Lester

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