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Cub Cadet Mowers - Cub Cadet Lawn Tractors

Super Cub Cadet after 35 horsepower Vanguard repower 35 horsepower repower on Super Cub Cadet Cub Cadet with 35 hp repower
John wanted the biggest engine repower that would fit in his Super Cub Cadet-He went with the 35 HP Vanguard engine repower.

Repair - Repower - Troubleshooting for Cub Cadets

Questions and Answers about Cub Cadet mowers and tractors


Jim, Thanks very much for your assistance in getting my Cub Cadet running again. The Vanguard engine runs great. It's lighter and more powerful than the original engine and I saved about $1000 by installing the Vanguard myself. The adapter kit you sent worked perfectly. Your help and advice on the 800 number made everything go well. I was really impressed that you were available any time I had a question. I would certainly recommend you to anyone wanting to install a new tractor engine whether they wanted to do it themselves with your help or have you do a custom installation. Thanks again.

Sincerely, Tom

Cub Cadet Troubleshooting:

I'm trying to get the pulley and PTO off the front of my 1998 model 2185 Cub Cadet engine. How or what do I need to do to hold the shaft so I can get the bolt out?

A: Just use an impact wrench and you will not need to hold engine crankshaft at all.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet Tank with 23 hp Kawasaki engine, this mower has about 210 hrs on it. I am having trouble with the gas flow. The fuel filter will not fill with gas. I have changed the fuel pump, fuel filter, blown the hoses out with air and checked all the hoses for cracks. The mower will crank and run for a few minutes, then it seems to lose it's prime. there will very little or no gas in the filter. If the mower is cutting, it will not go far at all before it will cut off. Any suggestions ?

A: Check and see if you carburetor has an electric carburetor solenoid shut off switch. If it does, that would be your problem, meaning you need to buy a new one.

Q: I have been having problems with my cub cadet. I have had it for a year and half and the belt continues to pop off during mowing. We have put it in the shop and they say it is fine. We have replaced all blades and belts. I know it is not alright. Can you suggest what might be causing the belt to do this?

A: You need to check all the pulleys for belt alignment. Also check if a pulley is bent together in one spot and making the belt jump.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet tractor, 7200 series, with a Mitsubishi. I am having a problem with machine starting after sitting overnight. it cranks and we have white smoke coming from exhaust, but we continue to crank and machine wont start. The 1st thing we noticed was that when we turn on key to glow plug function the glow plug light only stays on for not even 2 seconds. We contacted Cub Cadet and advised them of our concern and they stated that the glow plugs should stay on for at least 4 to 5 seconds. So we replaced glow plug timer relay, but still same thing.  It only stays on for not even 2 seconds. We have checked all electrical relating to glow plugs and have all the proper readings. We checked all our fuel delivery and everything seems okay. The thing we are checking now is to see if the fuel quality is any good. If there is anything else you can think of please let me know. I really appreciate any help or ideas
you can come up with.

A: When you say white smoke the first thing I think of is burned antifreeze. In other words, it sounds to me like when you shut it off the night before, naturally it is hot and there is pressure in the radiator. If the head is cracked or there is a partially blown head gasket the coolant will go into the combustion chamber and then when you try to start it up in the morning the coolant has entered overnight and that will surely make it a hard starting engine. Then after it does start it would be belching out the white exhaust.

Q: I purchased a used Cub Cadet 2185 last year, with about 400 hours, that works like a dream. That is until the blades would not work. I was told that the problem is in my PTO clutch and will either need to replace the entire thing or the coil or maybe the wires. Can you tell me how to diagnose the problem?

A: Check how much amperage your clutch is drawing. It should draw a maximum of 3 amps. If it is higher than that you need replace the clutch or coil.

Q: I have Cub Cadet LT1045. I bought it new in the fall of 2005.  The problem I am having is it won't start. It cranks until the battery is dead. Every once in a while it back fires. I have put in a new plug and gas filter. New Gas also.
I have checked to see if there is gas flow to the carburetor and it is there. I have pulled the plug after cranking to see if it is real wet and it is not. The back fire is as loud as a shot gun. Do you have any suggestions? Also there is a solenoid on the bottom of the carburetor and I checked to see if it is working and it is fine.

A: Check and see if your flywheel key is sheared, therefore being out of time.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet 1600 residential lawn mower. It does not want to go forward, but will go in reverse. Any ideas? It started last year and when I held it in the forward position it would go just fine. This spring I was towing a thatcher and it stopped going forward.

A: If this has two towing valves it sounds like one of the two is partially released.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet 86 Mule. I guess they name it mule because she sure can be stubborn! I know she is old but I like the old gal. She has a Kohler 8 hp engine. When I mow my lawn she will quit for a second and then I can usually start her right back up. But this time she won't start. I put in a new spark plug and checked for spark, and she is getting gas. She sputters and back fires through the carburetor and will shoot a small flame doing it. Is it my coil? I noticed the spark was orange when using my gauge spark tester and not blue. If so what would you recommend I would use as a replacement coil for that old mule of mine? Or is it time to start thinking new? I keep it in the garage and she is well taken care of. I love her big rear tires.

A:  Yes, install a new ignition coil and I believe your tractor will come back to life.

Q: I have a cub cadet and when I was using it I ran over a chain that was covered in dirt in my back yard. It goes forward and back but when you engage the blade it stalls out? Can you tell me what's wrong with it?

A: Check for a bent up blade on the under side and replace the blades.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet Hydrostatic Lawn Tractor, Model SLT 1554. The Electric PTO Clutch will not engage. I just purchased and installed a new clutch and it still will not engage. I only have the Operator's Manual and the Parts Manual and neither one help me much. I have gone to the web site and it doesn't help me either. Can you give me some advice as to what may be wrong with this riding lawn mower?

A: Take a jumper wire and hook to the positive on the battery. Then take that wire down to the positive side of your new PTO clutch and then you should hear it energize.
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 I have a cub cadet 129 built in 1974 and I’ve burned out 3 coils in two years. Any idea why the tractor would do this? The one I have now is okay, but many times after the tractor has been mowing for about an hour the tractor shuts down. After it sits for 5 or 10 minutes it starts right back up. Is this coil related also?

A:  Are you buying the ignition coil that does not require a resistor? Coils will live a shorter life if you do not have a resistor built into them.

Q: We have a Cub Cadet 1320 mower. It runs perfectly but begins to lose power as it gets hot. It continues to run and sound good, but loses power to the point that it won't even pull itself. After it cools, it is fine again and will mow perfectly for about 20 minutes.

A: Check your spark quality when it is running at it's worst. If your spark is weak and orange in color, replace the ignition coil.

Q: A small Cub Cadet of my mother-in-law's has broken 3 belts this mowing season. The belt that breaks is the belt between the tractor and the mower deck. Any thoughts?

A: Yes, it sounds like the one pulley that should be spring mounted is rigid or stuck in stationary condition.

Q: I have a 1989 model Cub Cadet 1872 Super garden tractor with 60" commercial mowing deck. It has just recently started giving me trouble. It seems to run ok, but it is leaking oil pretty bad somewhere around the lower front of the engine. This seems to get worse when I start the mower blades (it has the electric clutch PTO). Is this an engine or PTO problem? Can it leak oil from around the PTO clutch/shaft on the front? The oil is dripping down onto the mower belt and causing slippage. It was not doing this when I parked it last Fall.

A: There is nothing wrong with your PTO clutch. The PTO clutch has nothing to do with oil. It sounds like your problem is the front main bearing on the engine, as the crankshaft gets wear the crankshaft moves up and down too much. Then in turn it will knock the oil seal out.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet 682 mower that has serious engine problems. I'm thinking it'll probably need a new engine. I understand you supply repower engines like the Vanguard. This tractor has the 17 HP Kohler. Which Vanguard will fit the best, and do you supply a complete kit that bolts-in without cutting/welding, etc? Does it include the muffler that exits out the front grille? I'm trying to learn my options in case this present engine is toast!

A: Yes, we can take care of your 682 Cub Cadet mower. The engine to install is the 18 horsepower V-Twin Vanguard engine or we also offer a 23 horsepower. We have an exhaust system that comes out the front by the grille.

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Q: We have a Cub Cadet Model 2135 Yard tractor. The tractor seems to start up right a way but sometimes quits for no apparent reason, then we are unable to restart. We have kept up with all maintenance and use OEM parts. The first time this happened we had run it out of gas, refilled and could not restart for several hours. Could this possible be a clogged fuel filter? Should we look at something else? Just yesterday while approaching a slight incline in our 1 acre lot it stopped after starting fine and having approximately 1/2 of the yard mowed, it could not restart, had plenty of battery power, just won't turn over.

A: I would start with the basics, replace your fuel filter, check the fuel pump pressure, check the fuel pump volume, and check your spark quality.

Q: I have Cub Cadet (Model 1863) that has about 575 hours on a Kohler Twin V Engine that is presently losing oil. In addition, my engine backfires and loses power and struggles to run especially when it is under load. Any suggestions as to what my problem is or if you think I need to purchase a new replacement engine. I not only use this tractor to mow, but I use is with my 45" two stage snow thrower.

A: Did you check out the ignition coil and the valve clearances? Check if a valve seat came loose. If your engine is bad, the number one engine to use for a replacement is the V-Twin overhead valve Vanguard engine. They have a 3 year commercial warrantee and are as trouble free as an air cooled engine can get.

Cub Cadet Transmissions:

Q: I have a question regarding speed on my Cub Cadet model 1045 hydrostat tractor. I have a large area to mow and would like to get a few mph extra out of the mower. Do you know a simple adjustment that I could make to achieve my goal?

A: Check the speed control arm on your hydrostatic transmission to see if it is traveling all the way forward inside the transmission. In other words, make sure the linkage is not holding the arm from traveling all the way.

Q: I have a 1860 Cub Cadet with a hydrostatic transmission. It quit pulling. I changed the filter and fluid in it but that did not help. Can my transmission be rebuilt? I'm looking to find out if any thing can be done to the pump to beef it up so it can be used in my pulling lawn mower. My friends says it won't hold up in my puller.

A: If this has the same transmission as the 782 Cub Cadet, that is a very good transmission This transmission will hold up fine in tractor pulling. I have used that Sundstrand hydro for pulling for years and it does not break down for me.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet Series 3000 mower and need to know if there is a way to get it to go faster in reverse because it barely moves when I need to go in reverse.

A: I would say you need to check out the hydrostatic linkage and see if you can adjust it or bend the linkage towards the direction of reverse and I am sure you will get things working better.

Q: I have an old Cub Cadet 1220 with the hydrostatic transmission. Is that one that you can rebuild? Reverse seems to go okay, but forward has become weaker and weaker.

A: Yes, we can rebuild that hydrostatic transmission. You would send it to us, we remanufacture it and send it back.
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Cub Cadet Attachments:
Q: I want to rig up a snowblower attachment for my 42 inch Cub Cadet zero turn mower with a 17 hp Kohler engine. The Cub is model number RZT4200. The rear tires are 40 inches from outside to outside.

A: We just came out with the Berco two stage snowblower with its own engine so you can quickly hook it up and unhook it with a 1 7/8" ball on the rear of your machine. The snowblower is mounted on the front of your Cub Cadet zero turn. This is a 48 inch wide cut with a nice sized Vanguard v-twin overhead valve 18 hp engine.

Q: I'm looking for a dozer blade for my Cub Cadet 2550 tractor, a sleeve hitch and a rear scraper blade, if those two items are available.  Otherwise the dozer blade is the item that I really need. The factory book calls for DOZER BLADE #190 302, but this item is nowhere to be found, MTD has the 90 833 and 674. but can't answer what will fit.

A: Yes, I can fit you right up with a new 48" blade package, a new 2 stage snowblower, and a 48" power broom.

Q: I am looking for a Snow Blade / Plow for a Cub Cadet 2182 Super Garden Tractor. Do you have anything that would fit?

A: Yes, we have the subframe that will hook right up to your tractor and then the blade attachment also hooks up to the subframe. This is a 48" wide blade and you can control the angle adjustments right form the driver's seat.

Q: Do you have a soft cab that will fit a 2006 Cub Cadet GT 3100?

A: We have a soft cab that will fit your tractor.  Our Bercomac universal cab is priced at $475 including the shipping and handling.

Q: Do you have a good used power broom for sale I have a Cub Cadet lawn tractor 3608?  I will need everything to mount it. I also only have one hydro hookup for raising my mower deck, can I use that?

A: We have the new complete power broom unit made for that tractor.

Q: What model snowblower would you recommend for a Cub Cadet GT 2186? What if any advantages does the Bercomac have over the standard Cub Cadet model?

A: The Berco snowblower will out throw the Cub Cadet by a long way. That isn't just sales hype. Our neighbor across the road from us out here in the country was lucky enough to have his renter leave him his Bercomac snowblower and when he uses it we still all have to watch out the shop window. Another big advantage is the resale value. Some day you could sell it to somebody with a different brand of tractor and all they would have to do is get a sub frame kit for their brand of tractor. We have the one to fit your tractor.

Q: I am looking for a front blade attachment for my Cub Cadet GT 1554 27 horsepower garden tractor. Do you have any that will fit?

A: Yes, we have a new 48" push blade for dirt or snow usage. It is made special for your tractor.

Q: I was wondering if you could give me a clue as to what I should be looking for. My husband and I have about 2.5 acres of forested land. We have had this year about 3-4 feet accumulated snow. We are off on a private road (about 400 feet to our driveway and then another 100 ft to our door). We are looking at garden tractors capable of handing a 2-stage snow thrower. They all seem to take a blade but once the snow is wet it gets pretty heavy. We wonder if you could give us your advice on this. We have looked at the Simplicity models, we are really leaning toward a Cub Cadet with a snub shaft and PTO. Something in the 2500 series. What do you think? We are going to use it mostly for clearing the snow.

A: If you want to get the Cub Cadet I would get the shaft drive model with the biggest engine you can get. I honestly have a much better 2 stage snowblower than the Cub Cadet snowblower. It can't be beat for the distance it can throw the snow. So buy your tractor and a mower deck. My 2 stage snowblower will handle heavy, wet snow with ease.
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Cub Cadet Repower - Engine Conversions:

Is it feasible for me to repower my Cub Cadet 1811 lawn tractor with the Vanguard engine? The original engine is the Kohler M18l. My repair shop says it needs
a valve job.

A: I would not spend any money on that Kohler engine, it is not a quality engine to start with. If you get into a V-Twin, overhead valve, Vanguard engine you will be starting out with everything new such as the carburetor and the starter. Also this is a much more advanced engine with an oil filter and oil pump and other features. I can get you into the Vanguard engine for not much more than the cost of just a valve job.

Q: I have a 70's Cub Cadet 1000 with 3 speed manual transmission. As you know these little tractors are tough and built like the proverbial brick outhouse. I would like to repower it and eventually equip it with hydraulics, 3 point hitch and front end loader. Do you think this will be possible?

A: Yes, we have the Vanguard engines in stock to go into your tractor and we've done the repowers ourselves on Cub Cadets. You can add hydraulics on this unit if you do a lot of plumbing. It is amazing what the sturdy little tractors can do.

Q: I have a Cub Cadet 123 narrow frame that I need to repower. I've noticed that most newer engine crankshafts are about 1/2 inch higher. Have you ever done a repower on a Cub narrow frame?

A: Yes we have done the repowering on Cub Cadets. I think it was a 127 that has a hydrostatic transmission.

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