5 Common John Deere 345 Problems [& Fixes!]

john deere 345 problems

If you are the proud owner of a john deere 345 mower, you may wonder what to do if it starts having problems. It is essential to know what the common john deere 345 problems are so that you can address them as soon as possible.

Some of the most common John Deere 345 problems are ignition module problems, trouble starting the mower, coil failure, and needing to replace the timing delay module.

In this article, we will discuss some of the most common issues that people have with this mower.

We will also provide information on how to fix these problems yourself and when to take your mower to a repair shop for assistance.

5 Common John Deere 345 Problems

John Deere 345 Ignition Module Problems

One of the most common john deere 345 problems is with the ignition module. The ignition module is responsible for sending a spark to the spark plugs, which in turn ignites the fuel and starts the engine.

If the ignition module is not working correctly, the engine will not start. Ignition modules can fail for various reasons, including age, corrosion, and vibration.

Connect a spark tested to the spark plug wire using an alligator clip to test the ignition module. Turning the adjustment knob, set the gap on top of the spark tester to 4.2 mm. Then, with the ignition switched to “Run”, watch through the window in the tester for a spark. A consistent blue arc would show that the ignition module is functioning correctly.

You’ll need to replace the ignition module if you don’t see a spark.

Fuel Pump Problems

In my experience, there’s a dead giveaway if you’re having fuel pump problems, and that’s the mower working intermittently. The mower will normally run for 30-60 seconds and cut out, it’ll start up again, and the same pattern repeats.

Honestly, you’re likely dealing with a faulty fuel pump, but it is worth taking the time to check on the more straightforward fixes:

  • Air blow out the fuel lines, debris can get into the fuel line, which will stop the mower from running efficiently.
  • Replace the fuel filters.
  • Drain the gas tank and give it a good clear-out, old fuel can degrade and cause problems
  • Refuel with premium gas that’s been recommended in your user manual.
  • Check if the fuel cap is clear of any dirt or debris

If you still have problems after the above checks, it’s time to get a new fuel pump!

John Deere 345 Won’t Start

If your john deere 345 mower won’t start, the first thing you should check is the fuel level. If the tank is empty, fill it up and try to start the mower again.

If the tank is full, or if filling it up does not help, the next thing to check is the spark plug. Remove the spark plug and inspect it for damage. If the spark plug is damaged, replace it with a new one.

If the spark plug looks OK, the next step is to check the air filter. A dirty air filter can prevent enough air from reaching the engine, causing it to run rough or not start. Clean or replace the air filter as needed.

If the air filter is clean and the spark plug is in good condition, the next step is to check the carburetor. The carburetor mixes fuel and air and delivers it to the engine. If the carburetor is dirty, it can prevent the engine from starting.

To clean the carburetor, remove it from the mower and disassemble it. Clean all of the parts with a carburetor cleaner and a brush. Reassemble the carburetor and reinstall it on the mower.

The fuel filter can often be the culprit, change it and make sure you put the new one in correctly. The arrow should point to the flow of the fuel, basically towards the engine.

And finally, check your battery, ideally using a voltmeter.

Coil Failure

I’ve worked on a lot of 345’s, and a common issue I come across are the coils failing. Specifically the ignition and pulser coils.

The ignition coil sits under the flywheel and produces the spark that ignites the fuel in the cylinder. Over time, the ignition coil can fail due to a build-up of heat and vibration.

To test the ignition coil, remove the spark plug and connect the lead from the tester to the end of the spark plug wire. With the engine switched to “Run”, watch for a consistent blue spark between the tester’s electrode and ground. If you don’t see a spark, or if the spark is weak, replace the ignition coil.

When replacing the ignition coil you need to be very careful; precise spacing is required between the flywheel and ignition armature. Check your user manual for that information, but the typical spacings are 0.006-0.010 inches and 0.010-0.014 inches.

The pulser coil sits on top of the flywheel and generates a signal that is sent to the electronic control module (ECM). The ECM uses this signal to determine when to fire the spark plugs. Over time, the pulser coil can fail due to a build-up of heat and vibration.

Replacing coils can be a tricky one; I’d recommend taking your John Deere 345 to a local repair shop.

Timing Delay Module Problem

Another common issue with the John Deere 345 is a problem with the timing delay module. The timing delay module controls the timing of the spark plugs. If the timing delay module fails, the spark plugs will fire at the wrong time. This can cause engine damage and poor performance.

Over time the TDM will degrade, but luckily it’s an easy, inexpensive part to fix/replace on your mower.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What engine does a John Deere 345 have?

The John Deere 345 mower is equipped with a Kawasaki FD611V engine. This engine has a displacement of 603 cc and produces 23 horsepower.

What are the john deere 345 dimensions?

The john deere 345 mower has a width of 54 inches, a length of 73 inches, and a height of 45 inches. The weight of the mower is 588 pounds.

What year did they make the John Deere 345 tractor?

The john deere 345 tractor was first manufactured in 1995. Production of this model continued until 2001.

How much oil does a John Deere 345 take?

The john deere 345 mower takes 2.5 quarts of oil. This should be 10W30 engine oil.


The john deere 345 mower is a good investment. It’s a durable mower that is built to last. Even with everyday problems, the john deere 345 is still a reliable mower. If you can do your own repairs, then the john deere 345 is an excellent value.

But if you don’t feel comfortable working on engines, then you may want to consider another model. Either way, the john deere 345 is a great mower that has an average life expectancy of 1500 hours. However, with proper maintenance, you can extend the life of your mower.

Happy Mowing, all!