10 Ferris Zero Turn Mower Problems and Solutions

Ferris Zero Turn Mower Problems

If you’re anything like me, you take immense pride in maintaining a beautiful yard with the help of the renowned Ferris Zero Turn Mower.

Its agility and cutting-edge technology have been a game-changer for all of us who love efficient yard work.

But, hold on tight, because in this article, I want to share some unexpected Ferris Zero Turn Mower problems that you might be facing too. Whether you already own one or are considering buying it, knowing these issues is crucial.

Stick around as we explore common pitfalls, troubleshooting tips, and essential maintenance practices to ensure a seamless mowing experience.

See: Best zero turn for steep hills

Common Ferris Zero Turn Mower Problems and Their Quick Fixes

1. Ferris mower starting problems

The average Ferris zero-turn mower can last a decade without requiring mechanical fixes. If there is a problem during that time, it is usually due to the user.

However, if you’ve owned your Ferris mower for a while, you might experience starting problems. Suppose you only recently bought a Ferris zero-turn mower.

In that case, the problem might be due to not following the proper starting sequence. If you are certain you’ve done everything right, you need to troubleshoot the cause of the problem.

How to troubleshoot Ferris zero-turn mower not starting

Check the fuel

Bad gas is a common problem for mowers not starting. If you let gas sit in your fuel tank all winter and didn’t put in a fuel stabilizer, the gas will now be bad. So empty it, put in some fresh fuel, and see how it runs.

Check the fuel filter and fuel lines

If you have bad gas, it can cause a plugged fuel filter and fuel lines. It could also clog the carburetor, which would take a bit of effort to clean, but always start with the easiest checks.

Check the battery connections

If there is any corrosion, the battery won’t be able to power up properly. Clean corrosion with a brush or sandpaper. If any wire is burnt or broken, swap it out.

Check the spark plug

Spark plugs are often the reason why lawn mowers don’t start. It might be due if you haven’t changed your spark plug this season. However, if it’s dirty, you can clean it and try again.

Check all connections

Look under the hood and ensure all the wires and fuses are in place. Don’t forget the safety switch and PTO switch.

Check the air filter

Without sufficient airflow, the engine won’t start. Unfortunately, for some Ferris zero-turn mowers, you have to swap out instead of clean the air filter, so consult your manual to know what to do.

In some instances, the engine isn’t starting due to a voltage drop. If you suspect an electrical issue, use a volt meter.

Once you trace the fault, you can easily swap out the part or call an expert because electrical faults can be tricky.

2. Brake not working

Given how fast Ferris zero-turn mowers move, failing brakes is one problem you don’t want to have.

Unfortunately, zero-turn mowers cause accidents and fatalities each year, with a notable portion of them being attributed to issues related to the parking brake.

In the case of Ferris zero-turn mowers, you can expect the brakes to last as long as the mower unless you push them to their limits by working at high speeds on a slope or you have a faulty brake.

Whatever the cause, there are usually two things to do when you suspect a broken brake.

  • If the brake lever fails, you should tighten the bars and bolts connecting the lever to the brake cable.
  • If a part of the brake cable is broken, replace the entire cable immediately.

Even though it sounds like a huge job, you can replace the brakes yourself.

3. Won’t cut wet grass

Most complaints about Ferris zero turn mower problems are usually exaggerated or common to most zero-turn mowers, and this is no different.

Mowing wet grass is a problem for all mowers, including zero-turn mowers from other brands. Besides that, Ferris explicitly tells owners not to mow wet grass.

However, there is a rumor that Ferris zero-turn mowers are meant for dry and wet grass, which has upset customers.

If you MUST mow wet grass, get the Gator zero turn mulching blades. These are game changer, but don’t use them on tall wet grass because that will still clomp up the cutting deck.

4. Unable to raise the deck

One of the advantages of a zero-turn mower is its speed. That is why Ferris and other brands make it easy for you to adjust the cutting deck on the fly, so you can get to your preferred cutting height in seconds.

Unfortunately, a few Ferris zero-turn mower owners have noticed slight or significant delays in this process. In some cases, the cutting deck didn’t raise at all.

This is usually due to a problem with the deck linkage. After a while, the linkage may not move as freely as it did and might require a bit of WD-40.

However, you should also check the springs, deck mounting points, and any arms for damage.

5. Engine runs poorly

Ferris zero-turn mowers are famed for their reliable engines. That’s because they only use the best of the best: Kawasaki or Briggs & Stratton.

So, if your engine isn’t running properly, there’s a good chance you have not been servicing it properly. Of course, it may also be a faulty engine or old age.

How to troubleshoot Ferris zero-turn mower engine problems

  • Check the oil level
  • Check the engine’s air filter
  • Check the engine’s oil filter
  • Check the engine’s fuel filter
  • Check the PTO switch
  • Ensure you are running at the highest engine throttle speed
  • While driving, ensure you adjust the levers evenly and avoid jerky movements
  • Ensure you used the right engine oil
  • Ensure you’re using the right fuel mixture
  • Check the spark plug gap

Chances are, whatever is wrong would be cleared by these. You can also prevent engine problems by keeping up with the required maintenance and not running the engine beyond its normal speed.

That will put unnecessary pressure on the engine and shorten its lifespan.

6. Excessive vibration

Feris Zero-turn mowers have fantastic suspension and one of the best riding experiences. That is why it is shocking when you begin to feel the lawn mower vibrate excessively, especially the mower deck.

The cause of this is usually loose bolts and connectors, which is normal when you’ve ridden a machine for hundreds of hours.

However, we’ve also noticed that this complaint is more frequent after the owner has removed the cutting deck, perhaps to sharpen the blades.

If you don’t reinstall the deck correctly, it will lead to this problem.

7. Problem with the hydro-gear system

Ferris zero-turn mowers use a hydraulic system with patented hydro-gear technology. The hydrogear uses hydraulic fluid to power the mower instead of gears.

This is part of the reason why you get a smoother ride and the part requires less maintenance.

Despite how great the hydrostatic transmission system is, it can be undone by something as basic as air.

For example, if there is a broken connection or you just changed the hydraulic fluid and air is trapped inside, the hydrogear won’t work.

You need to bleed out the air before you can get your zero-turn lawn mower back in the yard.

8. Uneven mowing problems

One of the most frustrating Ferris zero-turn mower problems is when it can’t do what it’s meant to do.

Of course, getting uneven cuts is not new with a lawn mower, but you don’t expect that from a commercial zero-turn mower that costs thousands of dollars.

However, it is abnormal to get uneven cuts from a Ferris mower if you have done everything right and are working on level ground.

It is slightly more common on slopes, but that’s to be expected from a zero-turn. If you aren’t getting the right results, you can troubleshoot the cause.

How to troubleshoot uneven mowing problems on a Ferris lawn mower

  • Check the tire pressure so that you have the right lawn mower tire PSI. Different models require different tire psi’s, so ensure you follow what’s in the manual.
  • Ensure the blades are sharp. Dull blades will scalp or pull up grass instead of cutting. Cut them every 25 hours or more often if there are a lot of rocks on your property.
  • Run your zero-turn mower at full throttle. Not only is this good for the engine, but it also ensures a level cut.
  • Keep the deck clean. When there’s a lot of debris in the deck, the airflow is compromised, and it won’t be able to suck up the grass for a straight cut.
  • Check the belt and pulley system. When the deck belt gets weak, the power becomes inconsistent, which affects the cut. Ensure you replace damaged belts and also check the springs.
  • Don’t rush. This is particularly important when cutting slopes. Moving too quickly will cause the mower to bounce, compromising the cut.

Besides these, ensure you double back when mowing and don’t cut wet grass.

9. Traction problems

Ferris zero-turn mowers are built with traction that is good enough to handle relatively steep inclines. It even gives a smooth ride on wet grounds – driving, not cutting wet grass.

However, if you have owned a Ferris zero-turn mower for a few years, you will notice that it will begin to develop traction issues.

There are several reasons for it, but the most common is your tires going bald. If you use your Ferris zero-turn mower in wet conditions, you should also consider getting tired with better wet traction.

And, of course, you should keep them pumped to the required pressure because this can also cause traction issues.

Low hydraulic oil could compromise the hydro gear and affect steering and traction, as well as broken or worn pulleys and loose connections.

It is critical that you solve the traction problem because this can lead to accidents if you lose control at the wrong time. If you can’t solve it yourself, call a mechanic.

10. Scalping

Last but not least is a Ferris zero-turn mower problem that is unbearable for a professional landscaper.

When you scalp your own land, it is inconvenient, and it is mildly annoying. However, scalping a commercial lawn can cause harm to your reputation.

If your lawn mower is leaving chunks of brown dirt as you cut, you need to inspect it right away, and here’s how.

Related: Simplicity zero turn mower Troubleshooting

How to troubleshoot scalping on a Ferris zero-turn mower

Adjust the deck

Ensure that your deck has been properly installed from all angles. So check the alignment and the height from front to back and side to side.

Make sure the mower blades are straight

No matter how good of a landscaper you are, a bent cutting blade will scalp. Disfigured blades are more common with commercial lawn mowers because you are more likely to hit rocks, logs, and other hard objects on different properties.

Check the height of the anti-scalp wheels

Firstly, ensure the wheels are in good condition. Secondly, you may need to lower the wheels to provide better protection.

Inspect the terrain before cutting

If the lawn is bumpy and slopey, there is a higher chance of scalping. By studying the terrain ahead, you’ll know when to adjust your speed accordingly and the angle to come at.

Check the suspension

If the suspension has a problem, it will likely affect the angle and quality of the cut. So, if you’ve been noticing a slightly bumpier ride than usual, the suspension could be compromised, and it’ll need help from an expert.

Check the hydraulic system

The hydrostatic transmission on Ferris zero-turn mowers affect everything. It could compromise the motion control levers, which could make you lose traction at the wrong time and end up digging into the lawn.

Ferris lawn mower troubleshooting

Engine won’t startFaulty ignition system or dead batteryCheck ignition components, charge or replace the battery
Excessive vibration and noiseLoose or damaged belts or blade imbalanceTighten belts, balance or replace the blades
Uneven cutting patternWorn or unevenly sharpened bladesSharpen or replace the blades, ensure proper deck leveling
Loss of power while mowingDirty air filter or clogged fuel systemClean/replace air filter, check and clean the fuel system
Steering difficultiesLoose or damaged steering componentsInspect and tighten/replace damaged parts
Hydraulic leaksDamaged hoses or sealsInspect and replace damaged hoses or seals
Mower pulls to one sideUneven tire pressure or misaligned steeringAdjust tire pressure, align the steering system
Excessive engine smokingOverfilled oil or worn piston ringsAdjust oil level or replace worn piston rings
Poor cutting performance on slopesTires lacking traction or uneven terrainInstall tires with better grip, mow slopes with caution
Abnormal engine temperature or overheatingClogged cooling fins or low coolant levelClean cooling fins, ensure proper coolant level and flow

Specific Model Problems

Ferris ISX 2200 problems

Ferris 3100z problems

  1. Engine Won’t Start:
    • Check the fuel level and make sure there’s enough gasoline in the tank.
    • Ensure the spark plug is clean and properly connected.
    • Verify that the battery is charged and the connections are tight.
    • Check the safety switches (seat switch, PTO switch, etc.) to ensure they’re not preventing the engine from starting.
  2. Uneven Cutting:
    • Check the mower deck for any debris or grass clippings affecting the blades’ movement.
    • Ensure the mower blades are sharp and not damaged.
    • Level the mower deck according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  3. Excessive Vibration:
    • Inspect the blades for damage or wear; replace them if necessary.
    • Check the pulleys and belt for any signs of damage or misalignment.
    • Ensure the tire pressure is even on all wheels.
    • Look for loose or damaged parts in the cutting system and tighten or replace them as needed.
  4. Loss of Power:
    • Check the air filter and clean it or replace it if it’s dirty.
    • Ensure the fuel filter is clean and free of debris.
    • Check the carburetor for clogs or other issues; clean or repair it as necessary.
    • Inspect the spark plug and replace it if it’s fouled or worn out.
  5. Hydraulic Issues:
    • Check the hydraulic fluid level and top up if necessary.
    • Look for any leaks in the hydraulic system and repair them.
    • Inspect the hydraulic hoses for damage or kinks; replace them if needed.
    • Ensure the hydraulic pump is functioning correctly.
  6. Ferris zero turn electrical problems
    • Check the battery voltage and connections.
    • Look for any blown fuses and replace them.
    • Check the wiring harness for damage or loose connections.
    • Inspect the safety switches and wiring related to the ignition system.

Ferris is3000z problems

Ferris is2000z problems

  1. Engine Issues: Problems with the engine can arise, such as difficulty starting, loss of power, excessive smoke, or unusual noises. These could be due to issues with fuel, spark plugs, air filters, or more significant engine malfunctions.
  2. Electrical Problems: Electrical components, such as the battery, starter, or wiring, can fail or develop faults, leading to issues with the mower’s operation.
  3. Hydraulic System Malfunctions: The mower’s hydraulic system controls the movement of the mower’s wheels and blades. If there are leaks, loss of hydraulic pressure, or unusual noises, it can affect the mower’s performance.
  4. Belt Wear or Breakage: The mower’s belts may wear out or break over time, leading to a loss of power transmission to the cutting blades or drive wheels.
  5. Steering and Control Issues: Problems with the steering system or control levers can affect the mower’s maneuverability and safety.
  6. Cutting Quality Problems: Uneven cutting, scalping, or other issues with the quality of the mowed grass may arise due to blade problems, deck issues, or improper adjustments.
  7. Tire and Wheel Troubles: Punctures, tire wear, or wheel alignment issues can impact the mower’s stability and performance.

Ferris is1500z problems

  1. Engine Problems:
    • Engine not starting: Check the fuel level, battery, and ignition switch. Ensure the fuel valve is open, the battery is charged, and the spark plug is in good condition. If needed, clean or replace the air filter and fuel filter.
    • Engine stalling or running rough could be due to clogged fuel filters, dirty carburetor, or ignition issues. Cleaning or replacing filters and carburetor maintenance might help resolve the problem.
  2. Cutting Issues:
    • Uneven mowing: Ensure the mower deck is level and blades are sharp. Adjust the cutting height to the desired setting. Dull or damaged blades should be sharpened or replaced.
    • Excessive vibration or noise: Check for bent or damaged blades. Balance or replace them if necessary. Also, inspect the mower deck for any signs of damage.
  3. Electrical Problems:
    • Electrical components not functioning: Check the fuses, wiring, and connections. Loose or damaged wires can cause electrical issues.
    • Battery not charging: Examine the charging system and voltage regulator. If necessary, replace the battery or charging components.
  4. Hydraulic Issues:
    • Hydrostatic transmission problems: Check the hydraulic fluid level and condition if you notice the mower’s speed or maneuverability issues. Top up or replace the fluid as needed.
  5. Wheels and Tires:
    • Uneven tire pressure: Ensure all tires are inflated to the correct pressure to maintain stability and traction.
  6. Safety Switches:
    • Interlock system not engaging: The mower might have safety switches that prevent it from starting or engaging the blades if certain conditions are not met. Check all safety switches and ensure they are functioning correctly.

As you navigate your search for mowers, it might also be helpful to explore a list of zero-turn lawn mower brands to avoid.

This resource can provide valuable insights into making a well-informed decision that aligns with your specific needs.

Final thoughts on Ferris lawn mower problems

Ferris makes some of the most reliable zero-turn mowers on the market, just as they have done for years and will hopefully keep doing.

The only reason we see a lot of problems is because of their impressive longevity – the longer they last, the more room for problems.

However, with the right maintenance routine, you may not experience these Ferris zero-turn mower problems.

We forgot to mention that some problems arise because you’re using the wrong deck size or the wrong zero-turn mower.

If that might be the case, see our blog on choosing the right size mower for your lawn.