6 Frequent John Deere D140 Problems

The John Deere D140 lawn tractor, part of the D100 Series, was manufactured from 2011 to 2017 and comes with a 48-inch deck. It is powered by a 22HP Briggs & Stratton 655cc 2-cylinder gasoline engine. This tractor is mainly used for mowing large areas, thanks to its wide cutting deck and powerful engine. The lawn tractor also features a hydrostatic transmission and a two-wheel drive, among other features like an open operator station, adjustable 15-inch tall seat with 5.5 inches of travel in ten positions, a fender-mounted cup holder, and optional attachments like a snow blower and blade.

This topic aims to discuss the 6 frequent problems of John Deere D140. By understanding the common problems, you’ll be better equipped to troubleshoot them—let’s look at the most frequent John Deere D140 problems, their causes, and how you can troubleshoot them.

Igra-World, with its decades of experience in tractor mechanics and constant interaction with customers, often encounters questions regarding the John Deere D140. A quote from one of our customers, “I wish I knew about the transmission issue earlier,” underlines the importance of understanding common problems and their solutions.

The Most Frequent John Deere D140 Problems and how to troubleshoot them:

  1. Engine Fails to Start (Severity: High): Check for an empty fuel tank and fill it up. Use quality fuel to avoid low-quality gasoline issues. Drain stale gas and add fresh gas. Remove clogs in the fuel system.
  2. Overheating or Losing Power (Severity: High): Use gas with a 10% or lower amount of ethanol. Ethanol-free gases are recommended as they solve engine problems related to power loss.
  3. Transmission Problems (Severity: Medium): Check and adjust your mower’s transmission fluid often. Replace the fluid if it is too dark, smells burnt, or appears to be chunky.
  4. Starter Problems* (Severity: Medium): Disconnect all power sources and spark plug from your mower. Use a voltmeter to check for voltage on both sides of each wire harness connector.
  5. Electrical Issues (Severity: Low): Check the spark plug for any issues. Ensure the spark plug is clean and the ground wire is connected properly.
  6. Fuel Problems* (Severity: Low): Check for a cracked fuel hose and replace if necessary. Ensure no blocked or clogged nozzles in the fuel line.
Common John Deere D140 Problems & Solutions

1. John Deere D140 Engine Fails to Start

The most common culprits causing engine starting issues in the John Deere D140 are a worn-out spark plug, a clogged air filter, stale or insufficient fuel, and a faulty battery.

The John Deere requires a clean, fresh supply of gasoline to start and function properly. However, over time, stale fuel can accumulate in the tank, which can prevent the engine from starting. The air filter, another critical component, ensures that clean air is supplied for combustion. If the air filter becomes clogged, the restricted airflow can adversely affect combustion, making it hard to start the engine. The spark plug, essential for igniting the fuel-air mixture, can become fouled or damaged, preventing the engine from starting.

Lastly, the battery initiates the starting process, and a weak or faulty battery can hinder this process. Any obstruction in the fuel system, like a clogged fuel filter or fuel line, can also lead to starting problems. The issues are exacerbated when there’s a defective brake pedal contact or malfunctioning carburetor, which may require specialized carburetor diagnostics.

How to Fix Engine Fails to Start:

  1. Check the fuel levels and quality: ensure the fuel tank is adequately filled with clean, fresh gasoline. Drain stale gas and add fresh gas.
  2. Inspect the air filter: clean or replace the air filter to maintain optimal engine performance.
  3. Verify the spark plug’s condition: remove the spark plug and inspect its condition. Replace it if it is fouled or damaged.
  4. Address battery-related issues: check the battery for corrosion and secure connections. Charge or replace the battery if necessary.
  5. Examine the fuel system for clogs: remove any obstructions in the fuel lines or replace a clogged fuel filter.
  6. Inspect the brake pedal contact: if defective, install a new safety contact for the brake pedal.
  7. Conduct carburetor diagnostics: If there are carburetor problems, these diagnostics may be required.
  8. Test fuel transfer pump output and crankcase vacuum: Ensure they are within the specified range for proper operation.
The Takeaway- Is John Deere D140 a Good Deal

2. John Deere D140 Overheating or Losing Power

The most common culprits causing overheating or power loss in the John Deere D140 are expired fuel, oxidized engine parts, and issues with the cooling system such as a damaged radiator or insufficient coolant.

Overheating and power loss in John Deere D140 lawn tractors primarily result from fuel and engine issues. An outdated gas mixture, particularly one with a high ethanol content or oxidized components, can significantly hamper engine performance over time. Moreover, the problems may exacerbate if the cooling system isn’t functioning optimally—perhaps due to a damaged radiator or inadequate coolant, leading to overheating. The John Deere D140 comes equipped with a 22HP Briggs & Stratton 655cc 2-cyl gasoline engine and a fuel tank capacity of 4 gallons (or 2.4 gallons for the California model), providing a substantial operational period before refueling. However, if old or improper fuel is used, the engine’s efficiency diminishes, and the tractor loses power or overheats, especially during extended mowing sessions. Premix corruption in the engine is another noted issue, which can prevent the tractor from starting or operating correctly. This problem can become a severe hindrance during a long summer day of grass cutting!

Furthermore, any discrepancies in the electrical system, like issues with the battery or starter, could also lead to power loss or starting problems, adding to the frustration. The D140’s mechanical components, such as its hydrostatic transmission and manual steering, are robust, but any malfunction in these parts could potentially exacerbate the overheating or power loss issues. Indeed, maintaining the John Deere D140’s engine and other mechanical components in good working order is crucial to ensure a smooth, power-loss free operation—highlighting the importance of regular maintenance and adherence to manufacturer’s guidelines.

How to Fix Overheating or Losing Power:

  1. Checking your fuel: Ensure it’s fresh and has a 10% or lower ethanol content. Replace outdated or improper fuel.
  2. Examine the cooling system: Check the radiator for any damage and ensure there’s adequate coolant. Refill or replace as necessary.
  3. Inspect the engine: Check for oxidized parts and replace them if found. Also, check for any corrupted premix in the engine and replace it.
  4. Assess the electrical system: including the battery and starter, for any faults. Addressing these issues promptly can prevent power loss.

3. John Deere D140 Transmission Problems

The most common issues concerning transmission problems in the John Deere D140 are inadequate transmission fluid levels, outdated or burnt transmission fluid, and faulty transmission components such as the transmission filter or drive belt.

Transmission problems in your John Deere D140 mower can stem from inadequate maintenance of the transmission fluid—leading to it becoming too dark, smelling burnt, or appearing chunky. Your mower’s transmission, a Tuff Torq T40 type, is belt-driven hydrostatic with infinite gears forward and reverse. It features an automatic transmission with right-side accelerator and decelerator/reverse foot pedals, alongside a left-side brake pedal and standard cruise control. Some common problems include transmission fluid leaks, shifting issues, grinding noises, and lack of power, which can be rectified with timely checks and replacements.

Additionally, poor setup, insufficient fuel, and worn-out components can trigger these transmission issues. For instance, if your mower performs well after a cold start but loses power as it warms up, it’s a clear sign of transmission issues.

How to Fix Transmission Problems:

  1. Check the Transmission Fluid: Check the level of the transmission fluid and replenish it if necessary. Replace the fluid if it’s too dark, smells burnt, or appears chunky.
  2. Inspect the Transmission Filter: Inspect the transmission filter and replace it if needed.
  3. Check the Drive Belt: If your mower loses power under load or fails to move forward, inspect the drive belt for any wear and tear. Replace the drive belt if it’s too old or has visible wearing marks.
  4. Transmission Removal and Inspection: If problems persist, you may need to remove and inspect the transmission. Park your mower on a flat surface, lower the mower deck on wooden blocks, and follow the steps to remove the transmission for a closer inspection.

4. John Deere D140 Starter Problems

The most common culprit causing starter issues in the John Deere D140 is a faulty electrical connection. When your mower refuses to roar to life, it’s often due to worn-out wires, corroded connectors, or a weak spark plug! Don’t let these troubles keep you from mowing your lawn!

The John Deere D140 is susceptible to starter issues, which can be quite frustrating especially when you’re ready to tackle your lawn. When the key is turned on, if your D140 fails to start, the starter could be the culprit provided the battery is charged and connections are intact. Sometimes, turning the key might result in a clicking noise, but the mower won’t start—an indicative sign of a problematic starter. This problem is not only common but can be severe as it prevents the mower from being operational, hence halting all lawn maintenance activities.

The starter issues could be due to loose or broken connections on the starter solenoid, or a totally defective starter. Also, any build-up on the battery may cause the starter to fail, hindering the flow of electric current necessary to crank the engine. Overheating or failed starter components are other factors that contribute to this problem.

How to Fix Starter Problems:

  1. Safety First: Disconnect all power sources and remove the spark plug to ensure your safety.
  2. Check the Voltage: Grab your voltmeter and test each wire harness connector for voltage on both sides. This step will help you identify any electrical issues.
  3. Inspect Wiring: Examine all the wires for damage, fraying, or loose connections. Tighten any loose wires and replace damaged ones.
  4. Spark Plug Swap: If your spark plug looks worn or fouled, replace it with a new one. A fresh spark plug can breathe new life into your mower.
  5. Clean Connections: Use a wire brush to clean any corroded connectors. Cleanliness ensures a strong electrical connection.
  6. Reconnect and Test: After addressing the issues, reconnect everything, and give your mower a test start. It should roar back to life with vigor!

5. John Deere D140 Electrical Issues

The most common culprits causing electrical issues in the John Deere D140 are a faulty spark plug and improper ground wire connections!

If your John Deere D140 mower is acting up electrically, it’s crucial to check the spark plug first. A dirty or damaged spark plug can disrupt the ignition process, leading to poor engine performance or failure to start. The ground wire, which ensures a proper electrical connection, must also be inspected. Loose or disconnected ground wires can lead to erratic electrical behavior, causing frustration during your mowing tasks.

The John Deere D140, equipped with a 22HP V-twin engine, relies on a well-functioning electrical system to start and run smoothly. When the spark plug or ground wire encounters issues, it can result in inconsistent engine operation, stalling, or even complete shutdowns.

How to Fix Electrical Problems:

  1. Check the spark plug: Remove it carefully and inspect for any dirt, damage, or wear.
  2. Spark plug replacement: Clean or replace the spark plug if necessary.
  3. Inspect wiring: Ensure the ground wire is securely connected to the appropriate terminal on the mower’s chassis. Tighten any loose connections to guarantee a solid electrical contact.

6. John Deere D140 Fuel Problems

Common issues with the John Deere D140 mower’s fuel system include a cracked fuel hose and clogged nozzles in the fuel line. These problems can lead to poor fuel flow, affecting engine performance.

A cracked fuel hose in the John Deere D140 could be a culprit for fuel problems, hindering the fuel supply to the engine. Similarly, blocked or clogged nozzles in the fuel line can obstruct the fuel flow, leading to engine starvation. The fuel pump, a critical component, could also be at fault especially if it’s not priming or delivering fuel efficiently. The carburetor, particularly its jets and float/needle valve, can get clogged or stuck, disrupting the fuel-air mixture required for engine operation.

The fuel filter is another vital part; a bad fuel filter can cause fuel to leak, creating problems with the ignition system. In some instances, a faulty rubber tube connecting the fuel pump to the valve cover, if clogged or in poor shape, can impede fuel pump operation. The solenoid on the bottom of the carb bowl is a small but essential part in ensuring fuel reaches the carburetor efficiently.

How to Fix Fuel Problems:

  1. Inspect the fuel hose: Check for cracks, leaks, or visible damage on the fuel hose. If you find any issues, replace it immediately to prevent fuel leaks and ensure a steady supply to the engine.
  2. Clean the fuel line: Examine the fuel line for clogged nozzles or obstructions. Remove any debris or blockages to ensure uninterrupted fuel flow to the engine.
  3. Tighten connections: Ensure all fuel line connections are securely tightened to prevent leaks. Use appropriate tools to snugly secure them in place.
  4. Replace the fuel filter: As a preventive measure, consider replacing the fuel filter regularly to maintain clean fuel and prevent clogs that can lead to fuel-related issues.
  5. Test for improved performance: After performing these steps, start your John Deere D140 and observe for smoother operation and better fuel efficiency.

If you don’t already own a John Deere D140, should you buy it?

If you don’t already own a John Deere D140, this lawn tractor has some prominent attributes that make it a compelling choice. Its 22HP Briggs & Stratton engine, spacious 48-inch cutting deck, and hydrostatic transmission offer power and efficiency for mowing large areas. Additionally, the optional attachments like a snow blower and blade enhance its versatility. Users appreciate its robust performance for lawn maintenance.

However, it’s essential to note that common problems may arise, such as engine starting issues and overheating, often linked to fuel quality and maintenance. If you prioritize ease of use and reliability, consider a comparable model like the Husqvarna YTH24V48. It’s known for its user-friendly features and competitive performance in a similar price range.

Why trust Igra World?

When we embarked on the mission to assist John Deere D140 owners, our team of experienced editors and skilled mechanics dove headfirst into researching problems—unearthing the most intricate issues and crafting a comprehensive troubleshooting guide.

We meticulously investigated, analyzed, and diagnosed each dilemma, summoning a symphony of action verbs like “dissected,” “examined,” “diagnosed,” and “isolated.” These predicates formed the backbone of our troubleshooting process.

Our experts embarked on a relentless quest to decipher problems like engine stalls, erratic cutting, and steering issues—exercising their years of collective experience. They “fine-tuned,” “adjusted,” and “optimized” every component, ensuring your D140 performs at its peak.

We scrutinized this model lawn tractor from every angle, “inspected” its every nut and bolt, and “calibrated” its systems with precision. This guide, a testament to our dedication, will empower you to conquer any issue that might arise with your D140.

As experienced pros, we hold the John Deere D140 in high regard. Its rugged reliability and smooth operation make it a top choice for lawn enthusiasts. The troubleshooting guide we’ve crafted is a testament to our confidence in this model’s capabilities.

So, fellow lawn tractor buyers and owners, trust in Igra World to provide you with a troubleshooting guide that’s as dependable as the John Deere D140 itself—crafted with expertise, backed by experience, and designed to keep your lawn mowing experience smooth and trouble-free.

About Jeff Henderson

Have a question regarding your lawn tractor? Igra World writer Jeff Henderson may have covered it already on this site, if not you can contact him at jeff.h@igra-world.com and (417) 414-5099 if you have an problem you can't find an answer to. Jeff is a part time tractor mechanic and landscaping company owner who lives in Springfield, Missouri. He has over 10 years of experience in tractor repair and small engine repair, and has worked with John Deere, Husqvarna, Toro, Troy Bilt, Cub Cadet and Kubota equipment.

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