John Deere D105 Transmission Problems & Solutions!

The John Deere D105 has long been a reliable option for lawn care, but like any machine, it can face mechanical issues over time. One recurring issue users have reported is with the transmission, particularly the tractor’s struggles going uphill.

This article aims to outline the common problems experienced by D105 owners and possible solutions to resolve these issues.

Symptoms of Transmission Problems

The typical symptoms that suggest a problem with the D105 transmission include:

  • Sluggish movement going uphill, worsening over time
  • Intermittent forward movement, eventually leading to complete loss of traction
  • Temporary relief of symptoms after the tractor cools down, but the issue reappears once the tractor heats up again.

Possible Causes and Solutions

Given these symptoms, let’s consider what might be causing the problems and how they could be fixed.

Drive Belts and Pulleys

  • Problem: The drive belts and pulleys may be worn or damaged.
  • Solution: Inspect the drive belts and pulleys. Replace them if necessary.

External Components

  • Problem: Faulty external components around the transmission area.
  • Solution: Before rushing to replace the entire transmission, which can be costly, thoroughly inspect the surrounding parts, including variators and pulleys. Sometimes, the fault may lie in one of these components.

Variator Belt

  • Problem: Loose variator belt.
  • Solution: If you notice the variator belt isn’t as snug as it should be, consider replacing it or investigating whether it’s improperly seated.

Hydraulic Oil

  • Problem: Old or contaminated hydraulic oil can lead to performance issues.
  • Solution: Although the D105 doesn’t have a hydrostatic transmission, it’s a good idea to check the quality of the hydraulic oil. Replace the oil if necessary.

Serial Number and Recalls

  • Solution: Verify if your D105 is subject to any recalls. Although some models have been, not all serial numbers fall within the recall range. If your machine is included, you may be entitled to a free fix.

Transmission Replacement

  • Problem: If you’ve ruled out all the above factors, then the last resort might be to replace the transmission.
  • Solution: Be cautious when purchasing a new transmission online, as some users have reported receiving incomplete or damaged parts from online retailers. Buying from a reputable John Deere dealer might be a safer bet.

Extra Precautions

  • Hills are challenging for the D105’s transmission. If you regularly mow hills, consider a more robust model.
  • Never tow anything with the D105. It is an entry-level mower that can’t tolerate additional stress.

Success Stories

Some users have found success by replacing the springs on the secondary variator, which was compressed due to heat build-up. This is a relatively low-cost fix that could resolve the problem.

What is the recall on John Deere transmissions?

John Deere has issued recalls on various products over the years, including some related to transmission issues. One of the more prominent recalls concerning the transmission was for certain D105 lawn tractors. Here’s a brief overview of that particular recall:

Recall for John Deere D105 Lawn Tractors and Service Part Transmissions:

  • Date Issued: August 2017
  • Affected Models: John Deere D105 lawn tractors with serial numbers beginning with 1GXD105, and service transmissions sold by John Deere authorized dealers for use in the D105 lawn tractor.
  • Reason for Recall: The transmission in the affected lawn tractors can fail, posing a crash hazard that could result in injury.
  • Incidents/Injuries: As of the date of the recall, John Deere had received 163 reports of the transmission failing. There were no reports of injuries.
  • Remedy: Consumers were advised to stop using the recalled lawn tractors and contact an authorized John Deere dealer for a free repair.

If you own a John Deere product or are considering purchasing one, it’s a good idea to frequently check the company’s website or the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) website for any new recalls to ensure the product’s safety.

For those specifically concerned about the D105 or any other model, they should reach out directly to their local John Deere dealer with the serial number of their equipment to see if it falls under any active recalls.

Final Thoughts

Experiencing transmission problems can be incredibly frustrating, but understanding the issue can help you pinpoint the cause and save both time and money. Before deciding to replace the transmission, consider inspecting and replacing external components, drive belts, and pulleys. Always remember to consult your machine’s serial number for any recalls. If all else fails, a transmission replacement might be in order, but make sure you purchase from a reputable source.

By following these guidelines, you can make an informed decision about how to handle your D105 transmission issues and get back to caring for your lawn as soon as possible.