6 Problems With Case IH Farmall Tractors (For Beginners)

Case tractors problems

Case IH Farmall Tractors are rated among the top ten tractor brands in the country. 

While the tractors are great, they are not without a few problems that you should be aware of if you plan to buy one.

One of the widespread problems with Case IH Farmall tractors is the frequent breakdown of the motor drive, even before it is anywhere near expiration. The front axle also tends to wear out quickly. 

Let’s take a closer look at the common issues you might encounter with the Farmall tractors.

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1. Engine Overheating

Many older tractors, especially models without antifreeze coolant filters, may have recurrent issues of overheating.

This is usually because there is no antifreeze filter installed.  

In many cases, the radiator could also be a contributing factor to an overheating engine. 

The good thing about most of these tractors is that the engines are easy to repair. There is nothing too complex about the engines, making them pretty straightforward to work on.

But no one wants to consistently take their tractor to the mechanic because of the same problem, right? 

2. Gear Shift Problems 

The shifting on the Case IH Farmall tractor has an International Hanuman case. This usually comes with a short, stubby shifter attached. 

The gear shift is designed to change gears slowly, meaning you need plenty of patience while shifting gears. 

This slow change in transmission can be very frustrating. And if you are an impatient user, it won’t be long before you start slamming on the shift to make things a bit faster. 

Of course, it is possible to change the gear.

But this can cause serious malfunctions with the transmission, as some users have experienced firsthand. 

Driving a Case IH Farmall tractor with modified gear can be disastrous. 

Here’s another gear-related problem you might experience if you are not very patient with the transmission.

The gear teeth work in a slow, synchronous motion. 

If you attempt to change gears faster than you should, the teeth will start to wear out way too quickly.

That means you will likely need a replacement sooner than expected.

3. Clutches

If you are eyeing one of the loader tractor models, you might want to pay special attention to the clutches.

Some users claim that the clutch does a poor job of disengaging the engine from the drive motor and transmission gears.

Delivering friction to the gear is another issue that might arise. 

Of course, this doesn’t happen with newer tractors, as the problem tends to crop up after a while of using the machine. 

Nevertheless, the issue happens sooner than anyone would expect. 

In many instances, this problem is the leading cause for the quick wear and tear of the gear teeth. 

It is not uncommon for the problem to require a complete gear replacement.

4. Fuel Tank

A typical Case Farmall tractor comes with a fuel tank that can hold up to 20 gallons of fuel. The tanks are designed to be strapped to the back and bolted with the fenders. 

A common issue you might encounter is the tank not properly bolted to the fenders.

Ideally, you would expect the bolts to be welded together into the fender. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

This poses a serious risk because, with continuous use on the fields, the bolts will start to lose their hold.

Eventually, this can cause the bolts to create holes in the tanks. Of course, this can result in fuel leaking all over the work area. 

Another issue you could experience with the fuel tank is the unusual clogging at the entry. 

This can contaminate the fuel. 

It is not difficult to see how this clog could contribute to the malfunctions of the diesel engine. 

5. Front Axle

Another major problem that occurs over time with the Farmall tractors is the front axle wearing out. 

There are usually three bolts fitted to hold the axles at the front together. 

With time, they become wobbly and start to show signs of disintegration. This is not unconnected to the work rate on the field. 

It is common to see some users try to correct the problem by installing an additional steel plate. Keep in mind that while this might work, it is largely dependent on how you use the tractor. 

6. Oil Leaks

Although the Case IH Farmall tractors are well-built and reliable, they are not exempted from issues caused by either oil or hydraulic leaks. 

The center deck of these tractors houses the route for the hydraulic lines. 

The vibrations from the movement of the machine during use can cause the steel hydraulic lines to rub together and around the deck wall as the engine is in motion.

Continuous vibration can lead to a hole in one or two steel lines.

This can make the hydraulic oil and engine oil mix and create some serious problems for the engine.

Another type of leak is from the steering hand pump. 

When there is a leakage, the oil usually comes out from the top of the steering hand pump and streaks down the base of the steering.

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General Pros and Cons of Case IH Farmall Tractors

Here’s a general overview of the benefits of using a Farmall tractor as well as possible problems you may experience. 


  • Affordable and reasonably priced tractors with financing and flexible repayment plan
  • Well-built machines and usually reliable 
  • Readily available and easily accessible spare parts 
  • Easy to repair components, nothing complex about the parts, and maintenance is pretty straightforward 


  • Engine power decreases over time and the diesel engine can fail due to overuse
  • High fuel consumption, probably because of the location of the fuel tank
  • Fuel tank is prone to leaks
  • Costs of servicing and parts are unusually high, especially for the older models
  • Analog components make it difficult to detect the source of problems, and an electrical diagnostic approach may not be feasible

General Review of the Case IH Farmall Tractors

Owners of these tractors do not have many gripes with the machines. 

The tractors are designed to work for long hours. This makes them an ideal choice for farmers looking to spend significant amounts of time working in the field. 

The tractor series ranges from 16 hp to 120 hp, with many delivering up to 1,700 ft/lb for the loaders category. 

Powering agriculture for more than 170 years, Case IH has consistently proven that its tractors are one of the most reliable and robust products to grace the American fields.

One of the best things about these tractors is their pricing. 

You could get a utility tractor for as low as $56,500. Most of the tractors come with financing plans to make things convenient for buyers. 

Final Thoughts

Farmall tractors are great but they have their fair share of problems, too. 

However, you are less likely to find these problems mentioned on the company’s website. 

If you want a tractor that will serve you for a long time, it is only wise to go through reviews, particularly from unbiased websites.

An independent website like this one will give you the relevant details to help you make an informed decision before you set foot at a tractor dealer store. 

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