Bobcat zero-turn mowers are known for being exceptionally powerful, versatile, and efficient. It makes even the most challenging mowing jobs feel like a walk in the park. However, like any mower, it can experience certain issues that may affect its performance.
Common Bobcat Zero Turn Mower Problems include oil leaks, electrical problems, starting issues, high-pitched whining noises, and blade malfunction.
What Are The Common Bobcat Zero Turn Mower Problems?
Let’s take a look at some of the most common issues with Bobcat ZRT Mower problems.
1. High Pitched Noises
The mower can suddenly start making high-pitched whining noises. It may increase with time, increasing more on the 2nd or 3rd day. The noise may continue even when the blades are not engaged.
- A clogged filter may be starving your pump. If it doesn’t get fixed, then cavitation can worsen the situation.
- A wobbly pulley may not be spinning properly. It drives the hydrostatic transmissions. It may be because a bearing has failed. Get a new bearing, and pulley, and at least a check of the oil level.
2. Engine Overheating
While running your Bobcat, overheating will cause loud beeping and you may need to put the throttle down. The temperature gauge marks the red zone.
Machine shutdown prevention keeps track of critical machine functions and when a monitored function exceeds its typical operating range, the system sounds an audible alert and displays a warning message.
- Hydraulic fluid can get heated in severe temperatures and heavy workloads. Keep an eye on it. If it becomes too hot, leave the machine idle to cool off. Don’t immediately turn off the engine. Instead, let it idle.
- Check to see if the radiator is full or not. If its not, then fill it up.
- Clean the hydraulic cooler’s fins. It occasionally becomes clogged with dirt and oil, preventing the fan from drawing air past it.
- There could be a fluid leak. If the fluid leak is near the hydraulic fill, the hydraulic fluid is likely to swell and pressure out the cap. These caps are normally designed to enable fluid to pass through if the level becomes too high.
3. Hydrostatic Issues
Either one side of the hydrostatic transmission/mower will not move forward. But it will instead reverse. After the season, the machine will go slow drastically on little hills or similar areas.
It appears to improve as it warms up, but there is a visible slowing.
- Many users get lemons or factory defects from Bobcat with these problems. It is best to lawyer up if your new Bobcat ZT has these hydro issues.
- Begin by changing the filter and releasing the cap. When it comes to pump or motor problems, they normally start on one side first.
- If you are unfamiliar with hydro systems, take it to a dealer that can perform pressure tests. There isn’t much else an amateur can check besides fluid and filter.
- If notging solves the issue, then changing the hydrostatic transmission on both sides will be the best bet.
4. Blades Won’t Turn
One of the most common complaints about the Bobcat zero turn mower is that its blades do not engage. The blades won’t turn on when the PTO button is pressed. When the blades are engaged, the zero-turn becomes slow and eventually stops.
- The wiring harness must be checked for continuity to ensure it is functioning properly.
- There are normally three relays and a safety control module located under the Zero turn seat on the front left side. Since relays are often interchangeable, you can switch them out simply by changing their positions.
- Make sure nothing is burnt or melted, and use electric cleaner things to clean out your fuse holders.
- A faulty voltage regulator/rectifier may let the machine function, but not the clutch. So, check that part out.
- Also, check the seat safety module.
5. Starting Issues
The cranking or stalling of the Bobcat ZT mowers is caused by many things. It’s like the Pandora’s box of issues. It may be due to fuel system problems, or electrical issues or simply battery or engine issues.
- It may be a solenoid or battery issue. You may have a 4 post or 3 post solenoid. If it is a three-post solenoid, connect the clamp end to the engine ground and place the pointed end of the test light on the tiny post of the solenoid. There should be power at that post when you switch on the tester. If there is no electricity there, you most likely have a faulty switch. You should get 12V at the battery.
- If you do find battery voltage, then you probably have a bad solenoid.
- Checking for battery voltage at the Start Relay is a quick way to check the Ignition switch, safety switches, and PTO switch. Just check the three relays and locate the one with two black wires.
- There will also be two brown wires, one yellow wire, and one yellow wire with a black stripe running through it. This should be the center relay.
- Put the key in the Run position. Then get both Traction Levers fully open, PTO off, and Parking Brake on. Now check for battery voltage at the Brown wires.
- If you have battery voltage yet the mower will not start, you have a faulty Relay. If there is no battery voltage, you have a problem with one of the switches. In that case, you may have to replace the switches and/or the wires connecting the switches. You can also watch this video to learn how you can check the safety switch.
When to Seek Professional Help for a Bobcat Zero Turn Mower?
Bobcat has comparatively fewer issues than other contemporary mowers. But when do you consult a professional to help you with your Bobcat zero turn? Here’s when:
- Failure to start the engine, frequent stalling accompanied by loud unusual noises.
- Hydrostatic transmission issues, that is dragging on one side.
- Erratically behaving electrical systems definitely need an expert’s touch to fix.
- Uneven cutting means a bent deck, and that needs professional servicing.
These are the situations when you must seek professional help for your Bobcat Zero turn mower.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How often should I perform routine maintenance on my Bobcat zero-turn mower?
The routine maintenance on a Bobcat zero turn should be performed every 25-50 hours of operation.
Can I use my Bobcat zero-turn mower for snow removal in the winter?
Yes, some Bobcat zero-turn mower models can be connected with a snow removal tool, such as snow blowers and snow plows.
What type of fuel should I use for my Bobcat zero-turn mower?
Most Bobcat mowers are designed to run on gasoline with a minimum octane rating of 87.
How can I find an authorized Bobcat service center near me?
You can locate authorized service centers for Bobcat zero-turn mowers on the official Bobcat website. Or you can do it by contacting their customer support.