The John Deere L series was designed to be a one-stop shop for every type of yard work job. Although commonly used as a mower, the range of attachments you can get makes it great for things like light hauling or easy transport over large gardens.
It’s an affordable helper for anyone serious about their yard work.
As this isn’t intended for large-format commercial applications, you must understand the problems this mower can face before purchasing it.
So in this article, we’re going to cover all the most common problems that will crop up and how you can go about fixing them.
The most common problems with the John Deere l110
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Out of the four models available in the l range, this is the second in the lineup and is ideal for those who need something a little bit more potent than the l100 but are still looking for something with good value for money compared to the l120 and 130.
It has the same 42″ edge mower deck as the higher-end models but a smaller 19hp engine.
As this lawn tractor is designed with ease of use, it has John Deere’s own ‘easy change 30-second oil system’ , which makes maintenance of the mower a breeze.
Overall, user reviews for this lawn tractor are highly positive, with people praising the edge-cutting mower system, its overall comfort, and ease of use.
But the machine does run into some problems you will need to care of, so let’s take a look at what those are.
1. The battery doesn’t charge
The first thing to be aware of with this model is potential battery issues. No battery lasts forever; sooner or later, you will have to deal with some battery-related issues.
There are two main problems people run into regarding the l110 battery. Firstly is that, over time, the battery will naturally drain by itself. So if you’ve left the machine idle for a prolonged period, such as over the winter, you may come back and find that suddenly the John Deere tractor won’t start.
This is often mistaken for a battery failure, but before you run out and replace it, try to charge the battery for a good few hours – you may find that it fixes the issue altogether.
If you find that the battery seems to drain unusually fast after charging, it usually indicates that the cells inside the battery are dying. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to repair this, and we recommend simply removing the old battery and replacing it with a new, working one.
You should also check the connection terminals to see if they are corroded. You can use some battery terminal grease or a wire brush to clean the connection points.
2. The engine doesn’t start
Another quite common issue that can initially seem quite catastrophic, but more often than not, is just the result of some neglected general maintenance, and with a few small checks and fixes, we can get it back up and running in no time.
- The first thing to check here is enough gasoline in the tank. If you’ve forgotten to fill it up accidentally, the engine will not start, so fill the tank up.
- Ensure you are using high-quality gasoline. John Deere recommends not using gasoline with alcohol additives as it can affect the performance of the John Deere tractor engine performance.
- Even if you already have gas in the tank, it’s important to remember that the quality can degrade significantly when it’s left idle for a long time. So if the gas has been in the tank for a prolonged period, it’s often a good idea to discard it and use fresh fuel.
- Next, check the spark plug and ensure all the wires are connected. If it still doesn’t work, you can replace it with a new one, as this is a common point of failure and is cheap to replace.
- Finally, you should check the fuel filter. This is responsible for filtering out unwanted debris from the fuel so it cannot make its way into the engine. If this becomes clogged up, it can restrict fuel flow into the engine. Clean it out if possible, or if it’s already looking old, replace it with a brand-new one.
3. The engine overheats
Even though the engine is still technically able to run, overheating can lead to poor performance and accelerated component wear, so it’s best to address this sooner rather than later.
The most straightforward way to reduce overheating is to lighten the load on the engine. This can lower your operating speed, slow down the lawn mower blades, and be mindful of steep inclines that put additional pressure on the engine.
You should also check the air inlet and cooling fins that allow heat to dissipate from the engine. These can become blocked over time and should be cleaned regularly so air can move freely between the fins.
The oil level should also be set correctly. Both too little oil and too much oil can contribute to the overheating problem. So maintaining the correct oil level is very important. You should also ensure you use a good quality oil with the proper viscosity.
4. Excessive vibration
A certain amount of vibration during operation is to be expected. Still, you will know pretty quickly when this vibration becomes too much, as it will make the operational experience of using the lawn mower very uncomfortable.
It also usually indicates an underlying problem with the tractor, so it should be addressed as soon as possible.
The leading cause of this is the drive belts becoming worn out. It would be best if you inspected the drive belts for any signs of wear, including cracks or fraying along the edge of the belt. If the belt looks worn, you can replace it with a new one.
If the belt looks good, it may be too loose, causing slippage, in which case you should increase the drive belt tension.
You should also check that the John Deere mower blades are secured and the bearing turns nice and smooth. The blades may rattle around if these are off, causing unwanted vibrations.
5. Poor cutting quality
The cut quality will inevitably decrease over time through prolonged use of the John Deere Mower. Don’t worry; this is quite normal, and some easy maintenance steps should be taken to restore the cut quality.
The first thing to check is that the cutting and deck heights are set correctly. The blades will struggle to cut the grass nicely if it’s set too low or too high.
Additionally, you should also check the mower tire pressure is even across all four tires. If just 1 or 2 tires have low pressure, it will cause the tractor chassis to lean down on those sides, resulting in an uneven cut.
Finally, you should check the mower blades’ sharpness as, over time, these will naturally become dull through use and will need to be re-sharpened. John Deere recommends re-sharpening the blades every 25 hours of continuous use.
If the blades look bent or damaged, they should just be replaced.
6. The mower shuts down
It’s frustrating to experience when the John Deere lawn tractor shuts down in the middle of operation for seemingly no reason. If this happens to you, check the following areas to restore consistent functionality to the mower.
- Ensure there isn’t too much oil in the engine and drain any excess.
- Check the fuel pump is working correctly. It will shut down if this randomly stops supplying fuel to the engine.
- John Deere tractors have an inbuilt speed governor inside, which helps maintain control of the John Deere lawn tractor. If the governor is not correctly set, then it may cause the machine to shut down. So check this and repair it accordingly.
- Finally, you should check the carburetor to ensure the engine is getting the correct fuel-to-air ratio to perform optimally.
John Deere l110 Problems: Are they a deal-breaker?
This is a mower designed for the homeowner; as such, substantial and technical repairs can be a problem.
Fortunately, after looking at all the issues the l110 faces, we can see that these are just general problems that can be fixed and prevented with a good maintenance routine and do not require specialized skills or tools.
For that reason, we highly recommend this machine for homeowners and small-format commercial applications due to its excellent pricing point, complete set of user-friendly features, and ease of upkeep.