Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)/coil


I have a craftsman riding mower with a kohler engine . Model 917271061 15.5hp. I have replaced 2 coils on this mower and it keeps burning them out after a couple hours running . engine will just shut off and will not crank . if i replace the coil it cranks up and runs fine for about 3 hours . what would cause it to keep burning up coils

I have read about defective key switches that allowed power (DC)to pass through the switch to the ignition module.  This can be very difficult to find and I have never seen it but it is possible.

You can check the switch, by ohming it with a multimeter.
You could check to see if there is any power getting to the coils...just connect/wire a multimeter in the shut-off circuit and see if there is any voltage in the circuit when you are mowing.
You could also just replace the switch and see if a new switch corrects the problem.  

I have not read or heard of anything else that could cause the problem other than excessive engine heat but this is pretty rare as well.  I should ask to make sure...does the engine run fine when it runs or does it seem like it runs hotter than it used to?

Let me know.

Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)

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Eric A. Jones


Lawnmower Repair . Certified Master Service Technician from B&S. Have 23 years experience on B&S, Lawn Chief, Weed Eater, Echo, Peerless, Wheel Horse, Snapper, Atlas, MTD, McCulloch, Homelite and many other numerous brands. Specialize in electrical repair.


Born and raised in the midwest. Started tinkering with engines when I was about 14 on my Suzuki RM-80. I began lawn mower repair at a small hardware store. I knew absolutely nothing. I read lots of repair manuals and met an older fellow who taught me many lessons. I continued working on small engines through high school and paid my way through college working on mowers at the same hardware store. Decided to get away from the midwest and mower repair so I joined the Air Force. I repaired air traffic control electronic equipment and ended up in Hawaii where I got a part time job at Small Engine Clinic. I gained a lot of experience from the Small Engine Clinic and had a blast repairing small engines. I then took the Briggs and Stratton Master Service Technician test and earned my MST. I then traveled to Wisconsin where I attended the factory update training seminar and received formal training. Continued working on mowers part time as I completed 20 years of military. Retired from the military on a Friday and continued in the lawn and garden industry the next Monday.

MAS Aerospace Operations BA Mathematics AAS Electronic Communications AAS Electronic Technology

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