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Were you sitting down in seat at the time ? cus this model has a safety system that shuts engine off if mower is engauged and no rider is in seat , if so then you got a problem with your seat switch sometimes they get unplugged or pulled loose when fueling it up

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The John Deere GX345 Garden Tractor was produced from 2002 to 2005 available in 48″ or 54″ mower deck options.
Check that all the safety switches are working correctly, it is possible the seat switch is bad or loose plug/ bad wire. Also if battery weak or charging system weak/faulty the clutch will stall out engine, charge battery up with charger and try.
The pulleys in your lawn tractor are driven by the drive belt, and turn the spindles. If a pulley doesn`t spin freely, it can cause the engine to die when the blades are engaged. To check the pulleys for sticking and damage, first remove the drive belt from the engine pulley and lift the lever to engage the blades.
What`s happening? This is a normal function of the seat safety switch. With the blades engaged, weight from the operator allows the seat safety switch to keep the engine running.
Information. John Deere 345 Lawn Mower, 20 HP, Liquid Cooled Kawasaki Engine, 54″ Cut, Hydraulic Deck Lift, Power Steering, Cruise Control, 1475 Hours!
The PTO lever allows the operator to quickly and smoothly control engagement and disengagement of the PTO using an easily-accessible control lever. If the tractor is stopped or is being downshifted, the PTO rpm levels can be maintained. To activate the PTO, simply move control lever forward.
An object or obstruction (such as an ant hill, clump of matted grass clippings or large tree branch) is jammed underneath the cutting deck or in the cutting deck drive system preventing the moving parts from engaging properly. Inspect for obstructions and carefully remove if necessary.
There is a safety switch at the end of the cutter engage lever which has gone faulty and needs replacing, overiding the switch by keeping it pressed in will allow the mower to be operational till replacement switch is fitted.
A full gas tank and oil reservoir are the essential first steps when checking why the lawn mower won`t stay running, but the problem could also be a dirty filter, clogged carburetor, improper fuel mixture, or a dirty spark plug.
You Lose Power in the Middle of Mowing:

Here`s why this happens and what you can do: Dirty Air Filter on Your Lawn Mower: Clean or replace. Dirty Spark Plug: Clean or replace. Build Up of Clippings & Debris: Clean underside of your lawn mower deck as noted above.

If your lawnmower will start and run with the choke on but dies when the choke is turned off, it may have a problem with the carburetor. The carburetor brings air and fuel together and mixes them in the perfect ratio for combustion before they enter the engine.
If your riding lawn mower engine dies when you release the brake, there`s a good chance the mower`s seat switch is broken or unplugged. The seat switch stops the engine when it doesn`t detect an operator sitting on the seat to prevent the mower from moving without a driver.
The 10-character year symbol is included in the 17-character Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) used by John Deere to identify vehicles. The year of manufacture of your tractor is stated in the VIN`s tenth character. If the tenth character is P, the year 2010 would be the manufacturer`s year.
With proper maintenance and repair, a John Deere riding mower will provide approximately 2,000 hours or about fifteen years of service.
345 P-Tier | Mid-Size Excavator | John Deere US.

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Replaceing mower deck belt on 20 hp 42 mower model no 917275660. Got the belt on. How do I get the cluch spring back on.
ANSWER : Are you refering to the spring attached to the end of the cable that runs up to the lever on the dash to engage the blades? All you needed to disconnect was that cable on top of the idler arm that’s held in place by a ‘hairpin’ and the left pulley cover to put the belt on.

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Chainsaw stalls Chainsaw is 4 years old and has a history of moderate use. After I ran the saw about 1 minute on plain gas (grabbed the wrong gas can – ouch) the chainsaw sputtered and stopped.

It didn't seize, and the pull starter never became more or less difficult than normal. The engine would continue to start if I pressed the prime bulb and engaging the choke, but stall again after 10-20 seconds. The temperature that day was about 50 degrees F and I was running the saw with the “cold plug” installed (per warm weather running).

When it refused to keep running I did the following:
Flushed the fuel tank (that's when I saw the gas had no oil in it).
Ran hardware wire through all of the fuel lines.
Replaced the fuel filter and spark plug.
Cleaned the air filter with a nylon brush and compressed air.

Same behavior (start then stall in less than 20 seconds). I made at least 20+ attempts to start it.

I removed the carburetor and, though it looked perfectly clean, I took off the top and bottom covers then sprayed everything with automotive carb cleaner and blew out the passages with compressed air. The gasket and diaphragm looked new. No pinholes in the diaphragm when held against a bright light. I reinstalled the carb but got the same behavior (start then stall in less than 20 seconds). I again made at least 20+ attempts to start it.

I disassembled the short block and saw that the piston has some slight scoring on it. The ring is clean and I verified that the piston ring has .001 clearance between it and the piston ring groove all the way around with the ring held tightly in place (I was thinking that the piston might have become deformed if it did indeed get too hot when run without any oil premix).

The cylinder wall has no scoring and there isn't any signs of melted aluminum anywhere. The crank is clean as was the inside of the crank cover.

I reinstalled the crank cover using permatex non-hardening gasket goop and torqued the cover bolts to 10 inch pounds. I reassembled everything else per the exploded diagrams in Echo's “parts manual” for the CS400.

During assembly I took note that both the carb gasket and intake boot look like new.

Still the same result: press prime bulb once, engage choke, pull a few times and it starts but stalls after 10-20 seconds.

I'm stumped.

ANSWER : Not sure what to say other than its fuel starvation, if not already done replace the fuel filter in the tank, if no better i would suspect a massive air leak, so replace the crank seals, if there is no primary compression in the crankcsae fuel will not pull through the engine, good luck.

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What causes JD 260 riding mower to start dying when you engage the mower deck? It runs fine when you disengage the mower deck.
ANSWER : It’s the safety system that causes this. There is a switch under the seat that should activate when you are sitting in the seat. The switch can come loose or fail, the mounting can break, or the wires can come loose – any of these would cause the “engine dies when I engage the mower deck” behavior. Lift the seat, examine the switch. Rmove the switch and keep the plunger in with a piece of tape. Fixed? Then it’s just the mounting or adjustment. Not fixed? It’s the switch itself or the wires or connectors to it.

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I had hit a somewhat hidden stump on the lawn..bending the blade. Took the deck off and replaced the bent blade. Put the deck back on and now the cut seems uneven. It appears that the deck is now uneven. I attempted to follow the directions for a side-to-side leveling. Started with trying to measure the blade height and am struggling with getting to a spot where I can measure the blade on the left side. By looking at the deck, it appears to be uneven. I am struggling with being able to raise the left side of the deck.
ANSWER : I’ve only had luck removeing the deck, turn it upside down. Measure blade, mark, remove blade, insert large pipe over spindle, bend in direction. Re-install blade, and do it all over and over till straight. Measure in several locations.

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Serviced my riding lawnmower runs great. but when I put in drive it dies out. Also when I engage blades it dies out. No problems last summer. It won,t stay running when I do these two steps
ANSWER : Probably the seat safety switch. If it’s not activated (from your weight on the seat) the engine is killed when you put it in gear, or engage the blades. Lift up the seat and check the switch – wires on tight? switch tightly mounted? You can take the switch out and tape it in the pushed-in position to test things. If that doesn’t let the mower run, the switch itself is probably bad, but it could also be a connector that knocked loose when you serviced the mower. Check wires and connectors. Good luck!

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Took my 1715 in to have the drive belt replaced, and when I got it back and went to mow, the electric PTO engaged, but the blades turned slowly, and bogged down in tall grass.

After engaging and disengaging the clutch and raising and lowering the deck in an attempt to get a feel for the problem, I noticed and smelled belt smoke, so I turned her off and looked underneath and saw a lot of slack in the deck belt. The deck belt was not correctly behind the idler pulley. At this point the PTO switch would not disengage, preventing the mower from even starting, but she would at least crank.

I took it back and showed the mechanic, who lowered the deck, put the belt around the pulley correctly, adjusted the three clutch bolts, then I attempted to start and she wouldn’t even turn over. He claims the clutch bearings may be frozen, all I know is it was fine before I took it to him.

It was very discouraging because when I took it to him, the clutch was fine, only thing wrong was the drive belt.


1. It seems as if the mechanic forgot to run the deck belt around the idler pulley – would the resulting slack in the deck belt damage the clutch in any way? If so, how? Is there reason to believe that the minor adjustment he made would cause the mower to not crank?

Any comments or help you could give would be much appreciated, it seems very strange.


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Engine dies if i engage blades or take my foot off the brake
ANSWER : You likely need to replace the brake switch,the seat switch can also cause the same problem.Most likely problem is the seat switch,i would try that first.The pto or the reverse switch can cause a shut down but not until you try to mow,seat switch is the most suspect.

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My Poulan 2005 17.5 HP, 42″ mower runs a few minutes, then sputters and either almost dies, or does die. If it doesn’t die, it will speed back up and I can mow 20 or 30 feet and it will sputter again, and may die. It will always start right back up after dieing, but mowing over 2 acres like this is taking longer than I want to devote to it! I have removed and checked the fuel filter, it’s fine. I removed the gas tank and cleaned it out, but didn’t find any obstruction or anything there. I removed the lines from the tank to the filter, and the filter to the carb, cleaning both out. I put carb cleaner in the gas twice to clean out the system. Is it possible the solenoid at the bottom of the carburetor bowl is acting up and cutting the gas flow sporatically? Or is it more likely a problem with dirt or something inside the carburetor? I have never been inside one of these carburetors and don’t know how hard they are to disassemble and clean, or replace a float in, etc.
ANSWER : Good advice on the vent..if that does not fix it, it does sound like you have a dirty carb…the the small valve on the bottom is primarily there to stop the flow of gas when the mower is not running an EPA required device so gas does not run out on the ground when the float gets stuck in the open/ flow position…as the older carbs do..but may cause another problem but not yours at this point ..not a hard job just shut the gas supply off and slowly remove the bowl on the bottom of the carb..some gas will spill out just have a rag or something inspect the bowl for dirt,water,grit etc. clean it and the carefully remove the float just remember,jot down or take a picture of the float and connection..remove the float and the float valve and use some carb cleaner to spray the valve seat and valve..and put it back just the way it was…this should fix it if not the carb will need the jet that atomizes the gas cleaned it is located in the bowl next to the float can be removed using a screw diver..kind of tricky it is a jet the size if a hair..but can be cleaned with spray and a needle…you may want to do both once the bowl us removed..if your up to the challenge..if all fails a rebuild or new carb is in order..hope this helps..good luck.

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