john deere l120 problems

Common John Deere L120 Issues Explained

Welcome to our guide on the common problems faced by the John Deere L120 lawn mower. As an experienced user, you may have encountered various issues that can impact the performance of your mower. In this article, we will provide troubleshooting tips and maintenance advice to help you tackle these problems effectively. Whether you’re dealing with starting issues, electrical problems, smoke emissions, excessive vibrations, or other concerns, we’ve got you covered. Let’s dive in and discover solutions to keep your John Deere L120 running smoothly.

Before we get started, it’s essential to note that regular maintenance plays a crucial role in preventing problems with your John Deere L120. By following our maintenance advice, you can minimize the occurrence of issues and ensure optimal performance.

Now, let’s explore some of the most common John Deere L120 problems and learn how to troubleshoot them. Whether you’re a seasoned user or a new owner, this guide will equip you with the knowledge and techniques to keep your mower in top shape. Let’s get started!

John Deere L120 Starting Problems

One of the most frequent problems with the John Deere L120 is the inability to start. This can be caused by various issues such as:

  • Bad or no gas
  • Broken battery
  • Dirty fuel filter
  • Spark plug troubles

To troubleshoot these starting problems, you can try the following:

  1. Tighten loose cables
  2. Clean them with a wire brush
  3. Replace spark plugs
  4. Fill the tank with fresh fuel

We will provide detailed solutions for each of these issues. Refer to the table below for a quick overview:

Bad or no gasFill the tank with fresh fuel
Broken batteryReplace the battery
Dirty fuel filterClean or replace the fuel filter
Spark plug troublesReplace the spark plugs

John Deere L120 Electrical Problems

Electrical issues are another common problem faced by John Deere L120 owners. One of the main issues is power loss during mowing, which can be frustrating when trying to maintain a well-kept lawn. Additionally, blown fuses are frequently reported problems that can leave you without a functioning mower.

The power loss experienced during mowing can be attributed to a couple of factors. One possibility is cutting too much grass at once, which puts a strain on the mower and causes it to lose power. Another potential cause is debris and grass clippings getting stuck under the mower deck, obstructing its movement and resulting in power loss.

To resolve the power loss issue, there are a few steps you can take. Firstly, when dealing with tall or thick grass, it’s advisable to lift the mower deck slightly to reduce strain and maintain optimal cutting performance. This can alleviate power loss and ensure a smooth mowing experience. Additionally, regular cleaning of the mower deck is essential to prevent debris buildup and maintain proper airflow for efficient grass cutting.

Blown fuses are another electrical problem that John Deere L120 owners may encounter. When a fuse blows out, it disrupts the power supply to the mower and renders it inoperable. To address fuse blowouts, it’s crucial to check for wire damage in the power take-off (PTO) system, which is responsible for transmitting power from the engine to the mower deck. If any wire damage is detected, it should be repaired or replaced by a qualified technician.

When restarting the mower after a blown fuse, it’s important to keep the PTO clutch disconnected to prevent further damage. Once the fuse has been replaced, the PTO clutch can be reconnected, ensuring the mower is ready for use.

john deere l120 electrical problems

Troubleshooting Tips for Electrical Problems:

  • Lift the mower deck slightly when cutting tall or thick grass to reduce power loss.
  • Clean the mower deck regularly to prevent debris and grass clippings buildup.
  • Check for wire damage in the PTO system when experiencing blown fuses.
  • Keep the PTO clutch disconnected while restarting the mower after a blown fuse.

By following these troubleshooting tips, John Deere L120 owners can effectively address electrical problems such as power loss and blown fuses, ensuring a smooth and uninterrupted mowing experience.

Common Electrical Problems and Solutions for John Deere L120ProblemSolution
Power loss during mowing– Lift the mower deck slightly when cutting tall or thick grass
– Clean the mower deck regularly to prevent debris buildup
Blown fuses– Check for wire damage in the PTO system
– Keep the PTO clutch disconnected while restarting the mower
– Replace blown fuses

John Deere L120 Spitting Smoke Problem

Seeing smoke coming from the underside of a riding lawn mower can be a cause for panic. In the case of the John Deere L120, this issue is often caused by debris stuck in the mower deck or the engine not getting enough air.

To resolve this problem, follow these troubleshooting tips:

  1. Turn off the mower and let it cool down.
  2. Clean the mower deck to remove any debris that may be causing the smoke.
  3. If the issue persists, consider replacing the blades as they may be damaged or worn out.
  4. If none of the above solutions work, it is recommended to consult a mechanic for further inspection and repair.

By addressing this smoke issue promptly and taking the necessary steps, you can ensure the optimal performance of your John Deere L120 and avoid any potential further damage.

john deere l120 spitting smoke

John Deere L120 Excessive Vibration Problem

Experiencing excessive vibration while turning on the engine is a common issue with the John Deere L120. This problem can be attributed to various factors, including unbalanced mower blades, debris accumulation on the mower deck, or shifted sheaves.

To troubleshoot and resolve this vibration problem, follow these troubleshooting tips:

  1. Check the condition of the engine. If the engine is damaged or faulty, it may cause excessive vibration. If necessary, replace the engine with a new one to restore smooth operation.
  2. Inspect the mower blades for balance. Unbalanced blades can lead to excessive vibration. If any blade is damaged or out of balance, replace it with a new one.
  3. Thoroughly clean the mower deck. Debris and grass clippings that accumulate on the deck can disrupt the even rotation of the blades, resulting in vibration. Regularly clean the deck to prevent debris buildup.
  4. Examine the attachment of any additional accessories to the mower. Certain attachments may alter the blade’s motion, causing vibration. Ensure that attachments are properly secured and do not interfere with the blade’s operation.
  5. Divide the PTO (Power Take-Off) if needed. Dividing the PTO can help distribute the load more evenly, reducing excessive noise and vibration during operation.

By following these troubleshooting tips, you can effectively address the excessive vibration problem of your John Deere L120 and ensure a smoother and more comfortable mowing experience.

John Deere L120 Mower Blades

John Deere L120 Excessive Vibration Troubleshooting Tips:

Troubleshooting TipsAction
Check engine conditionInspect for damage or faults. Replace if necessary.
Inspect mower blade balanceReplace any damaged or unbalanced blades.
Clean the mower deckThoroughly remove debris and grass clippings.
Check attachmentsEnsure attachments do not interfere with blade operation.
Divide the PTOIf necessary, divide the PTO to evenly distribute the load.


In conclusion, the John Deere L120 is a reliable lawn mower that can encounter common problems affecting its performance. However, with the troubleshooting tips and maintenance advice provided in this guide, you can effectively address these issues and ensure optimal functionality of your John Deere L120. Regularly checking spark plugs, cables, fuel levels, and mower deck cleanliness is vital for preventing potential problems.

By following these maintenance routines, you can prolong the lifespan of your John Deere L120 and enjoy seamless mowing experiences. Remember, maintaining a well-functioning lawn mower not only saves you time and effort but also helps achieve a perfectly manicured lawn.

Proper care and maintenance are essential in keeping any machinery in excellent working condition, and the John Deere L120 is no exception. By conducting regular inspections and adhering to the recommended maintenance schedule, you can prevent most issues before they become significant problems. This ensures that your John Deere L120 performs optimally, giving you the best results every time you use it.


What are some common issues with the John Deere L120?

Some common issues with the John Deere L120 include starting problems, electrical problems, spitting smoke and excessive vibration.

How can I troubleshoot starting problems with my John Deere L120?

To troubleshoot starting problems, you can tighten loose cables, clean them with a wire brush, replace spark plugs, or fill the tank with fresh fuel.

What should I do if my John Deere L120 experiences electrical problems?

If you experience power loss or blown fuses, lift the mower deck slightly while cutting tall or thick grass, clean the deck properly, and check for wire damage in the PTO.

How can I resolve the issue of my John Deere L120 spitting smoke?

To resolve this issue, you should turn off the mower, let it cool down, and clean the mower deck. If the issue persists, it may be necessary to replace the blades or consult a mechanic for further inspection and repair.

What can I do to address excessive vibration on my John Deere L120?

Check the condition of the engine and replace it if needed. Inspect the mower for any attachments that may alter the blade’s motion and divide the PTO if necessary.


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