John Deere L130 Problems And Their Solutions

Going through the daily rough and tough while functioning, any machine may come across problems, and it’s pretty common with them. Even if it’s the best among the brands, it is prone to problems, and the same is the case with the JD L130.

Hence, in this piece, we are going to tell you about the JD 130 problems and fixes,- the petty ones. From mechanical faults to electrical issues, we will explore each problem and learn how to fix them. For the major problems that you can’t fix it on your own, you will, of course, have to bring a professional.

Common Problems with the John Deere L130

Common Problems with the John Deere L130
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The John Deere L130 is a high-end model within the L series. It packs a powerful engine and has a significant lawn-mowing dimension, allowing it to quickly clear larger plots of land. Apart from this, you also benefit from the brand’s patent Tuff-Torq hydrostatic transmission system that will let you achieve speeds up to 5.5 mph.

Besides mechanical improvements, the John Deere L130 also packs user-friendly features. For example, a tool tray is designed for convenient use when under operation. Plus, there are also improved grips for added comfort.

You will get a bog 15” seat to offer added back support that eases extra-large mowing jobs. But like other machines, the L130 does show some problems. So let’s find out what the issues are and how to fix them easily.

1. The Engine is Not Starting

You need to pay attention to the general maintenance and upkeep of your complex mower machine to avoid problems with the engine sooner or later. With regular and proper maintenance and care, you can ensure all the parts of the John Deere L130 are working correctly to start and run.

The engine may not start due to various reasons, including battery issues, blocked air filters, dry cylinders, or an empty fuel tank. Furthermore, this commotion can occur because of the power cord problems that connect to different components.

This is undoubtedly an alarming issue, but you can get it fixed and get your mower back on track.

How to Fix it?

If your mower isn’t starting or is hard to start, check the batteries’ condition first. Next, inspect any defective fuses and loose connections.

Don’t forget to inspect the spark plug to ensure they are running properly. If not, replace them. The spark plugs produce a tiny electrical spark that burns the fuel and starts the combustion process. This component commonly fails but is easy to replace.

The cylinders can even dry; in that case, use any durable oil enhancer or fuel treatment to spray the cylinder. After that, try to start the engine.

However, if you don’t find any electrical problems, look for fuel issues. If the fuel tank is empty, add fuel to it. Ensure to use a high grade of fuel.

Fuel quality can degrade over time, especially if the tractor is left idle for an extensive period. Moreover, stale and old fuel can turn into sticky elements that gradually choke up the carburetor or the filters. So fill the fuel tank with the new correct grade of gasoline after draining the old gasoline.

On the other hand, clean and replace clogged air filters, carburetors, and fuel filters. Carburetors deliver the right amount of air and fuel into the engine for optimal functionality. So you will need to adjust it as the motor can struggle to start if the carburetor delivers too much air or oil.

2. The Engine is Backfiring

The Engine is Backfiring
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Is the engine of your John Deere L130 mower backfiring? Then, you may need to replace or adjust something.

How to fix it?

First of all, inspect the spark plug to ensure that it’s working properly or not. Replace it if required.

Secondly, check the carburetor and adjust it accordingly. In addition, inspect the valves to ensure they aren’t choked or don’t have any sticking. Finally, check and adjust the throttle.

Setting all these factors correctly should solve the backfiring engine issue.

3. The Engine is Overheating

Overheating is said to degrade the overall engine performance of a mower and escalate component wear that will cost you much in the future.

However, excessive load is a leading cause of engine overheating. These lawnmowers are designed to bear a certain amount of weight. You are likely to face overheating issues if you use the mower to cut damp, heavy grass for a prolonged time.

Other factors include clogged air filters or air intake. A combination of gasoline and air powers an engine. If the air intake gets clogged, the engine doesn’t get sufficient air and, eventually, can get too heated.

Moreover, the problem could be low or high oil levels and poor oil quality.

How to Fix it?

Inspect the oil level and add the necessary amount. However, lawnmowers feature cooling fins in their engine that decrease the generated heat amount during combustion. Now, these fins can get clogged because of dust or debris. So inspect properly and clean the parts thoroughly to increase airflow.

Next, test the oil level in your engine. Too low or too high an oil level can lead to overheating issues. Moreover, the oil quality shouldn’t be too old and should be of good quality.

Inspect the rod connecting the crankshaft bearing clearance and adjust it accordingly. Lastly, adjust the idle speed so that the engine moves properly at an idle state.

4. Transmission Issues

Transmission Issues
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Some John Deere mowers have transmission problems, including L130, L140, and L120. The fact is that these models pack a hydrostatic transmission. With transmission problems, taking your John Deere L130 mower up steep hills or slopes can become hard. However, the engine remains completely functional.

The transmission refers to an enclosed, sealed unit that has no access to the inner parts of the transmission. Eventually, it will be hard to change the worn-out parts.

Transmission issues can be a bit complicated and very frustrating. You may need to reassemble, replace the transmission if under warranty or change the fluid based on the hyperstatic transmission’ condition.

How to Fix it?

First of all, examine the drive belt as slipped or faulty belt can prevent the tractor from functioning properly. Although it’s not a transmission issue, this disturbance can appear like it.

Interestingly, a key cause can be transmission fluids. And if it’s so with your L130 machine, you, unfortunately, have nothing to do. This is because the models like L130, L120, or L140 have no option to change the fluid externally.

5. Rear End Issues

With a John Deere L130 model, you are even suspectable to encounter rear-end issues with your machine. Rear-end issues signify the transaxle issues situated at the mower’s rear end in the middle of the back wheels.

The transaxle is the mechanical part assembling and integrating the transmission and other systems under a single mechanism.

On the other hand, you may find that the transmission has been losing drive or becoming weak over the past few days. This can be because of the transaxle problems at the back.

How to Fix it?

You should primarily find out the initial reasons behind the issue. For example –

  • Check whether any debris or stick is stuck in the transaxle. Remove it, if any, and reinstall the belt.

However, suppose you face this disturbance suddenly. In that case, it’s most likely because of stripping out of the drive pulley on the transmission input shaft.

6. PTO Clutch Issue

PTO Clutch Issue
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PTO stands for Power Take-Off. This clutch helps transfer the power to all the parts of a mower from the engine whenever required. Interestingly, the PTO Clutch of the John Deere L130 is one of the parts that are vulnerable to failure.

It follows a very simple process – once the PTO clutch is engaged and starts to drive, it automatically makes everything else active on your mower.

The fact is that this part can easily get damaged with time, especially when many other pieces are fastened to the clutch. Moreover, debris and dirt can get accumulated in the body.

How to Fix it?

It’s not difficult to fix an issue with the PTO clutch. Still, the real deal is understanding what you should do and executing it correctly. So let’s know how to solve the problem.

Firstly, disconnect the PTO clutch wiring. You need to unplug the wires straight from the unit. Use pliers’ help to disconnect the wire from the plug by cutting through the plastic casing and removing it.

Get off the guard covering the PTO clutch. Unscrew the guard attached with screws and drag it out from the mower deck. After removing it, you can access the PTO clutch.

After that, clean debris or dirt from this area to detect the issue clearly.

Now start repairing the damaged or defective parts or wiring of this mechanism. Replace the broken or damaged wires with new ones. After finishing, carry out a good test run and switch them on and off the clutch repeatedly to ensure it’s working smoothly.

7. Steering Issues

Over time, the John Deere L130 owners can face trouble steering the machine – it becomes stiff or loose. The turning radius can even become shorter. However, it’s usually hard to identify the real cause behind this issue.

How to Fix it?

The steering wheel is possibly too stiff or loose if you see it’s hard to pull with the handlebar while driving the mower.

  • Check for any damage to the gears and wheel, and then the steering sector plate and the pinion gear within the wheel hub assembly.
  • Replace the parts that are showing any signs of wear and tear.
  • If you find no issue in these parts, look for the excessive play in the steering shaft that is often worn out because of overuse.

On the other hand, look beyond the steering wheel towards the bottom to check the pinion gear and bushing. These two parts can lead to steering issues.

If the pinion wears out, the machine starts slipping as the pinion prevents the sector gear from turning, which is responsible for steering the front wheel. On the contrary, the two primary steering gears get mismatched when the bushing is worn out.

While the teeth wear out due to excessive friction, it affects the mower’s steering. So considering the problem, change the bushing, pinion, or sector plate to fix the steering issues.

8. Carburetor Issues

Carburetor Issues
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The carburetor is the part that helps in mixing the oil and air at the correct ratio for a combustion engine. So a faulty carburetor can be responsible for various problems with the engine.

However, if the engine is gushing with the choke off, it’s possibly because the carburetor is dirty.

How to fix it?

  • First, remove the carburetor by unscrewing the nuts that secure it with the engine. 
  • Separate the metal parts and plastic.
  • Take a cloth to clean off the dirt or grease from the parts. After that, wipe it lastly with a carburetor cleaner.
  • Finally, use a compressor for blowing air and eliminating added moisture. Then, assemble everything again.

Note that the oil line and oil filer can cause carburetor issues, although they aren’t directly carburetor parts. So check the fuel lines and oil filter. If they are clogged, clean them.


Mowers are essential agricultural and farming equipment. But like other machinery, they are also vulnerable to different problems. The John Deere L13o is a robust mower designed to accompany you for many years.

But it may still show some problems we discussed above for several reasons. We hope this article will help you figure out the possible causes and solutions to resolve the issues quickly. Above all, make sure to maintain your machine following the manual to avoid unnecessary wear and tear.


Why is my L130 mower running smoothly?

A major cause of a poorly functioning lawnmower is a dirty air filter. It prevents the sufficient flow of oxygen inside the engine required for combustion. Also, check the fuel filter of your machine to ensure it is clean. Then, if necessary, replace it.

How long does a John Deere belt last?

John Deere probably doesn’t specify a timeframe for how long their deck belt should last. But, generally, it should accompany you for 3 to 4 years without any disturbances for cutting an average lawn.

Why is my mower not starting?

If your machine is making clicking sounds and not starting, it’s likely due to a bad battery. Or there can be a poor connection between the starter and the battery. So inspect properly that the batter connections and alternator are tight and clean.

About Jennifer Igra

Growing up in Brooklyn, New York City known for it’s green gardens. Jennifer, a 30 year old gardener and green living fanatic started Igra World to share her gardening journey and increase gardening awareness among masses. Follow Igra World to improve your gardening skills.

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