4 Problems With John Deere Lx188 (Explained)

John Deere Lx188 Problems

There is a high chance you have heard about the John Deere brand. The brand is among the best on the market dedicated to producing quality diesel engines, forestry machinery, agricultural machinery, among other things. 

One popular model under this brand is the John Deere Lx188. And while the Lx188 is a reputable model, it still experiences some problems. This might include engine problems, mower deck issues, and electrical challenges. 

Let’s consider the challenges you’ll face with the John Deere Lx188.

Related Article: Are John Deere Mowers Good? (Explained For Beginners)

1. Engine Problems

John Deere Lx188 tractor experiences engine problems in different ways. Let’s consider them below:

Engine Not Starting

The tractor engine might fail to start, thanks to an empty gas tank. In such a case, ensure that the tank is full.

You might also be using the wrong gasoline grade. Here, check the user manual to ensure you employ the correct gasoline grade.

Stale gasoline can be responsible for your engine not starting. Drain it from the tank and add afresh. 

Sometimes, the spark is defective or not working at all. Inspect the spark plug wires and ignition spark for any problems. Replace them where necessary.

Inspect if the tractor’s fuel filter is clogged and replace.

In some cases, the engine might fail to start due to a corroded or loose electrical connection. Inspect all electrical connections and make changes. 

You should also inspect the starter and replace any defective parts. 

Engine Overheating

Sometimes, you might experience your John Deere Lx188 engine overheating. This could be due to it running under excessive load. In such a case, ensure the load is reduced. 

The engine might overheat due to a blocked air intake screen. Ensure the clogged components are clean. 

Since oil acts as a coolant, too little or too much of it could lead to overheating. Inspect the level and ensure you fill it accordingly. 

It’s also important that you employ the right oil quality.

Engine Won’t Idle

If the engine fails to idle, the spark plug contact could be poor. Tighten it correctly to fix the issue. 

Additionally, the spark plug could have failed. Inspect it and make the necessary changes. 

Engine Knocks

Most John Deere Lx188 owners experience engine knocks. This could result from stale gasoline or excessive engine load. Employ the right gasoline and reduce the load, respectively. 

Inspecting the oil level and making the necessary addition could also solve the problem. 

Engine knocks also result from a slow engine speed. Here, adjust the carburetor. 

Insufficient Power

There are times when the John Deere Lx188 tractor engine generates insufficient power. The problem could be an overfilled engine oil or engine overheating. 

Drain any excess oil and change the air filters. 

If the problem results from a damaged fuel pump or faulty governor, repair the pump and adjust the governor. 

Excess Fuel Consumption

Your John Deere Lx188 tractor might experience excessive fuel consumption translating into high fuel expenses. 

The problem could be the throttle not opening fully. Inspect the choke cable and make necessary adjustments. 

You should also inspect the carburetor and make adjustments. 

Black Exhaust Smoke

If you notice black exhaust smoke, your oil might be soaked or the air filter dirty. Ensure you check and clean them properly. 

The choke might also be partially engaged. In such a case, adjust them well. 

2. Electrical Problems 

If your tractor isn’t functioning effectively, you need to troubleshoot electrical problems.

Starter Not Running

Here, the main fuse might be defective. The solution is to install a new fuse. 

A poor terminal connection might also result in the problem. It would help to ensure the terminals are clean. 

Inspect whether the battery is discharged and charge it accordingly. 

The starter might fail to function due to ignition lock challenges. Ensure you change the switch. 

If the starter itself is damaged, change it as soon as possible. You might also be forced to replace your wiring. 

Battery Not Charging

Some tractor owners experience dead battery cells. To fix the issue, buy a new battery. However, ensure the battery is the recommended model. 

The battery cables and terminals might also be dirty. In such a case, ensure they’re replaced or cleaned. 

3. Machine Problems

Machine troubleshooting could also help keep your John Deere Lx188 in good shape. 

Tractor Vibration

Tractor vibrations could be due to a worn-out equipment-driven belt or a damaged traction drive belt. In such a case, install new belts. 

The drive sheaves could also be dirty. We recommend that you clean them well. 

It would help to check for bent cutting blades and make relevant changes. 

Engine Operating But Tractor Not Moving

In most cases, the parking brake is locked. You should therefore release the brakes. 

The bypass valve lever could also be activated. Ensure you deactivate the valve immediately. 

Check for loose blades and fasten them securely. For instance, if the blades aren’t balanced well, balance them correctly. 

4. Mower Deck Problem

Discharge Chute Clogged

A clogged discharge chute could result from a high tractor speed. You must maintain the recommended speed. 

It’s also associated with a very high level of mowing grass. Employ a shorter cutting height to avoid the problem. 

You should also avoid cutting wet grass. 

Belt Slips

Some tractor owners experience belt slips, a problem associated with a dirty pulley. It would help to clean the pulley. 

The drive belt could also be damaged. We recommend that you install a new one in such a case. 

Excess Mower Vibration

This challenge is associated with a clogged mower. The solution is to remove the clogging from the sheaves or mower deck.

A worn belt or pulley could also cause this problem. In this case, replace all the damaged parts and ensure the pulleys and belts are aligned well. 

Uneven Cutting Outcomes

This is a common problem caused by an unleveled mower deck. To correct the problem, level your mower deck. 

It’s also caused by low tire inflation. We recommend that you inflate the tires. 

If the height of the roller is incorrect, check out for wheel adjustment. 

In some cases, the problem is caused by blunt blades. Inspect for blade fault and make the relevant changes. 

Pros and Cons Of The John Deere Lx188 Model


The Lx188 model presents various advantages that make it one of the best tractors on the market. First, the tractor offers the kind of reliability you’ll never find in some models. 

The tractor is also designed with a solid deck. 

It’s developed with advanced technologies that guarantee a smooth and powerful ride. 

One thing most owners love about the tractor is that it’s water-cooled. 


  • The tractor is slow in reverse
  • Its plastic hood isn’t durable

What Do Reviewers Say?

Looking at the John Deere Lx188 tractor’s online reviews, most are positive. However, some reviewers have raised various disadvantages relating to the tractor.

One reviewer highlighted that the tractor is very slow in reverse. The tractor is also designed with a plastic hood that isn’t durable. 

Despite such challenges, the John Deere Lx188 tractor is among the best tractors on the market.


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John Deere Lx188