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Old 06-07-2018, 02:43 PM   #1
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Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Not sure if anyone can help. Have a Gravely zero turn (34z). Changed the hydraulic fluid following exact procedure in service manual. Moves and runs fine, but the mower (PTO) seems to lose power randomly. It feels like it would cuttong very thick, wet grass, when the mower bogs down, but Im not cutting qet, thick grass.

Any ideas? Thanks
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Old 06-07-2018, 03:05 PM   #2
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Was it doing the same thing BEFORE you changed the fluid ? If not, maybe some air in the lines? How are the lube points on the machine ? Lubed well ?
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Old 06-07-2018, 03:07 PM   #3
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No it ran fine previous to the fluid change. Purged the syatem twice and greased everything up. Also checked the bwlt and its in good shape.
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Old 06-07-2018, 04:31 PM   #4
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Sure there is no need in asking but I will. Once the machine was ran up to normal operating temps, did you recheck the hyd. tank fluid level ?


Two threads are now open !
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Last edited by Gregsoldtruck79; 06-07-2018 at 04:37 PM.
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Old 06-07-2018, 04:38 PM   #5
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Yes, after purging both times I ensured the level was correct on the dip stick.
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Old 06-09-2018, 12:45 PM   #6
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


By any chance...did you measure the fluid coming out....vs. the fluid you put in ? And...is there a hydraulic filter somewhere ?
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Old 06-09-2018, 12:56 PM   #7
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Maybe I'm reading this completely wrong but I can't recall hydraulics powering mower blades on a mower of that level.
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:02 PM   #8
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


I wonder if it is this mower, which from what I can read would be hydrostatic controlled ?

https://www.mowersdirect.com/Gravely...er/p10440.html
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:17 PM   #9
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregsoldtruck79 View Post
I wonder if it is this mower, which from what I can read would be hydrostatic controlled ?

https://www.mowersdirect.com/Gravely...er/p10440.html
Under the heading DECK it reads: View Pic - if it will open
Pic doesn't open. Finally opened.
It Reads : ENGAGEMENT -----WARNER ELECTRIC
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:31 PM   #10
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Yes there was a filter that i had changed as well. One thing i noticed was that it did not drain completely (only got a quart out, manual says it hold 2.5). I jacked the mower up from 3 different points and worked the levers to push more fluid out. Im sure i have old and new fluid mixed now.

I did run it for a good 4 hours yesterday and it mowed fine. Didnt bog down at all but did notice it handle differently. Hard to describe but feels like the qheels are slipping at times. Ive also rechecked the hydraulic level several times and it is right where it should be.
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:33 PM   #11
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Yep. the mower blades are belt driven, I was looking for a source where the mower would use hydraulic fluid. The wheel/steering on the zero turn looks to me at least, is using a Hydro-Gear Fully Integrated Transmission....to me meaning it is hydraulic/hydrostatic. Not sure what the OP means by a PTO, as I did not know zero turns had external PTO's drives. I have seen them as an accessory on some of the old WheelHorse lawn tractors though but they were belt driven.
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:36 PM   #12
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Yes the mower blades are belt driven. I should not have used the term PTO. Bad habit.
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Old 06-09-2018, 02:37 PM   #13
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


So the mower " moves and runs fine " but the blades RPM aren't staying up to speed?
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Old 06-09-2018, 03:01 PM   #14
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Re: Gravely Mower Dying After Hydraulic Fluid Change


Reads like a fairly expensive mower. I think before I would risk damaging the hydro drives or whatever, I would drop it off at a Gravely shop and pay for a diagnosis. Then, depending on the mowers age or how long you want to keep it, decide what to do from there, if it is a real problem that requires $$$$$ . JMO
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Old 06-09-2018, 03:33 PM   #15
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Yea it was about $5k new. I bought it for $2k almost 8 years ago. Its a 34 inch deck and i have 5 acres to mow. I have no problem tinkering with it - breaking it - and having to buy a new one 😉

After some more diagnosing and talking to other Gravely owners, it seems the symptoms im describing are aimply worn wheel motors. I know it has been towed/drug at least once without someone opening the hydraulic bypasses........
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