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  1. #1
    O2Man's Avatar
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    Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    I experienced an electrical short 3 or 4 weeks ago, while running, that sent a jolt up the throttle cable and shut it down immediately. Since then, it will not turn over or start from the ignition switch; however, I can get it to turn over if I "hot wire" either the wiring harness that plugs into the ignition switch, or the starter solenoid posts, but even under either of those two circumstances, it will not fire, only turns over.

    I have replaced the ignition switch and the pto/seat relay, and have tested all switches for continuity, and they all have continuity when they are supposed to, so I am thoroughly confused and have no idea what to look at or check next. Any help or guidance would be greatly appreciated.

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  3. #2

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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    Have you checked ALL the fuses and looked for fusable links ?
    Where was this "short" ? If you can "hot wire" it at least one break in the circuit is probably between where it normally goes and where you jump to.
    Sounds like you may have burned a solenoid - does the carb. have a solenoid wire to the fuel bowl ?
    Have you pulled a plug to find out if it is getting spark ?

    Just ideas -- hope something helps !

  4. #3

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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    Quote Originally Posted by O2Man View Post
    I experienced an electrical short 3 or 4 weeks ago, while running, that sent a jolt up the throttle cable and shut it down immediately....
    Are you saying you 'felt' a "jolt up the throttle cable" ... if that is the case, the throttle cable is likely shorting out the high voltage spark plug cable... you will not feel 12 volts...
    Check the spark plug wire... KennyV

  5. #4
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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    well, I didn't actually "feel" anything, basically what happened is it was running just fine for a minute or two, then just abruptly quit and shut down as if I had turned the key off, but I hadn't, and then I looked back and saw a little bit of smoke coming from behind me, so I got off of the mower and went to see where it was coming from, and it was the plastic cover to the throttle cable melting. Other than that, it does not appear to have actually burned up anything, but I cannot get it to even turn over via the switch now, although the switch itself is brand new and tests out fine, and all of the safety switches that I have been able to find and test are also testing fine for continuity, etc. And I can get juice to the regulator (brown) wire at the harness when I "hot wire" it, but it is not getting power from the switch when connected.

    I will check the plug wire, as that seems fairly easy to check. Would that prevent the ignition switch from giving voltage or power to where it needs to in order for it to turn the motor over and/or fire and start?

    And one other question, do any of you know off hand where the brake switch is physically located on this rig? I have found it on the wiring diagram but cannot place it on the mower itself. That is the only safety switch I have not tested yet, as I was not aware of its existence or where it was to check it.

    Thanks for any and all offers of help, I appreciate it :)

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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    So you have 12 volts at the key switch?
    If not check for a fusible link or fuse in the wiring that should supply the 12 volts... KennyV

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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    Yea, I have 12V going to the switch and at the switch, that is what has me baffled. I have tested the wires at the harness where they connect to the switch, and the switch seperately for voltage and continuity, and both check out fine seperately; however, for some reason that I have not yet been able to figure out, I am not getting anything at all FROM the switch to the starter when the harness is plugged into the switch. I can "hot wire" the wiring harness and get it to turn over non-stop, and same for when I hold a screwdriver up to the bolts on the starter solenoid; but I can't get it to fire under any circumstance, and can't get it to do anything at all via the key switch.

    I have checked all fuses and they are all good. I have checked all of the safety switch connections EXCEPT for the brake switch, because I have not been able to physically locate it yet. I have seen it on a wiring diagram, but cannot yet find it on the mower itself. All other safety switches have continuity when they are supposed to though, so if it isn't the brake switch that is keeping it from sending the charge and firing, then I have no idea what is going on with it, and it is probably going to the shop next.....

  8. #7

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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    The next questions are -- Are all the safety switches actually making contact (or not) when they are supposed to ? Does seat switch make contact when sitting on it - etc. Are you engaging all the safety switches when you try to start it ? ---- I forget the EASY things sometimes ! I would think the brake switch needs to be somewhere in the mechanical linkage. I found on one of my machines that the switch was good, but the cam that engaged it was not QUITE making it close - it needed an adjustment. Have you found where the short was that caused the shut down ?

  9. #8
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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    Best I can tell, all safety switches are making contact when they are supposed to. The seat switch is definitely making contact when sat on, and all safety switches that I know to engage are engaged when I try to start it, same as before the short when it would fire right up. I have not yet found the source of the short that shut it down, but I have thought about that, I figure I would want to find the source of the short and fix that specifically too, otherwise the potential is there for it to short out all over again even if I fix everything else (unless of course whatever it is that is keeping it from firing IS the source/cause of the short as well.) ??

  10. #9

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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    If the throttle cable got hot, there must have been some electrical contact with it somewhere. Is there continuity NOW from cable to Positive battery terminal ?

    If I had tried everything else, I might start checking continuity of every positive wire to ground {disconnect battery} (there should be no continuity from positive to ground). If you get a positive to ground continuity, that is your short.

  11. #10
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    Re: Ariens EZR 1542 won't start after electrical short.....

    Quote Originally Posted by BKBrown View Post
    If the throttle cable got hot, there must have been some electrical contact with it somewhere. Is there continuity NOW from cable to Positive battery terminal ?

    If I had tried everything else, I might start checking continuity of every positive wire to ground {disconnect battery} (there should be no continuity from positive to ground). If you get a positive to ground continuity, that is your short.
    I did some testing tonight (not sure I did everything right, but I think I did). Here is what I did and what I got:

    Using a voltage/ohm meter, I touched the red prong to the positive battery terminal, as well as to the pin on the starter solenoid where the brown wire plugs into (from the key switch), and the black prong to the throttle cable, and I got continuity both times. I don't know if I did that test right, and/or if that means I have continuity to the throttle cable, but the ohm meter did beep steadily when hooked up that way.

    A couple of other things I noticed; When I tested the pins on the starter solenoid (with the black on the ground pin and the red on the brown wire pin), it had continuity all the time, both with the key switch turned off and on. The guy at the Gravely dealer told me that either meant my starter solenoid is bad or not bad, but I don't remember which one he told me.....

    One other thing I checked is, I grounded the black wire on the voltage meter, and plugged the red one into the red&yellow wire that goes from the start relay to the fuel solenoid, and it had no continuity with the key on. Should it? I just wasn't sure if that was normal or not....

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