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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So had somebody running a 9430 that I have owned for a while and the stop sign came on half way down the field on the first pass in the morning. He immediately shut it down because that is what we told him to do if something like that ever happens. It still sounded fine to him and no smoke from anything. 2 days a go a code came up for fuel filter so changed those and checked the fluids including the oil. I Forgot to clear the codes. Ran it a whole day before this happened. Looked at the codes now and too many to determine. The stop code had never come up so thought it was something pretty serious but didn't know. Tractor won't start back up on one try so left it and thought it might be related to the fuel filter thing. Called john deere service and they came out and hooked up computer and said there was too many codes to determine which one so he cleared them and wanted to run it. Cranked and cranked and cranked it to get it started. Person running it had also told him the heater wasn't working when he started out this morning too. I was combining. They start down the field and a little more than a football field later steam poured out from everywhere. Water pump had dumped coolant into the case. Dipstick was full. The tech wanted him to run it into jd a mile away. We said no way. They recommended to drain the oil to safe level and drive it on the truck. Now we are looking at a new motor. Scuffed piston liner, cracked the head in like 10 different spots between the different valves on all cylinders and sunken liners. Was wide open when it blew the smoke. I just don't like how this was handled. Tech never checked the oil before going any further. Apparently other water pumps have failed this same way on the 13.5 and the 12.5 so the cold cab might have been a clue. Codes all got cleared so don't know which one was the stop code. Cranked and cranked and cranked on it too...wished it wouldn't have ever started. Sounds like it shouldn't have been driven at all after the coolant was found. 3100 hrs on it. I didn't know that the water pump had direct access to the crank case either. Great design John Deere!! Ruined the whole engine over that. Wasn't leaking or using any coolant prior. Just looking for thoughts on this and how it was diagnosed other than from the dealer... Can anybody tell me what stop code might have been triggered?
 

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Common problem on those.
The cold cab was the hint the antifreeze already had leaked into the engine and coolant level wasn't high enough to circulate.
There is no saving that engine it was done by the time the tech got there.
The fact it had to spin a lot says to me already done like dinner.
 

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I'm just going to warn you those JD tractors have a fair bit of issues. Next they are going to find the engine fan drive is bad, their fuel injectors go bad and axles give way more trouble than they should.
JD reliability on these 4wd are about as bad as their old 30 series 4wd, just so you are aware before you sink big $$ into the engine.
 

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Like WHY would that be required at 2500 hrs? Dumb AZZ design... the NEW 13.6 has ALL that changed, they knew for 25 yaers and did SFA, never fixed the crappy design, never stood by the repairs. The 13.5L combine fan drives in 9870 cost farmers MILLIONS in rads plus. We know, neighbors too!
 

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The 30 series and 20 series have served us quite well for years. I just had the 9220 in for a full inspection last winter and the axles only needed slight adjustment on one of the bearings to bring the play within spec. Other than that, a clean bill of health. Have had little issues over the years but nothing major. I expect it to run for another decade.

We also change the water pumps about every 3000 hours, which is a good reminder for me as I'm nearly due on the 9330. Sure it's a bad design when it can leak into the oil pan like that, or worse the bearings could fall into the gears on the older units. But has been otherwise pretty reliable for us. We did change out the injectors once. The Deere engine is basically a Detroit series 60, although by the time of the 13.5 the partnership had ended, but the dealer tech told me once the blocks are virtually the same. I know detroits also run the water pump off the front gear train. Do they have similar issues when the pump seals go out?

I'm pretty sure there was an upgrade for the fan pulley. I can't remember the details but the first version of the variable speed pulley was unreliable. I'm just servicing my 9330 right now, so I'll have to have a closer look at the pulley.

@slider, did the morning engine oil check show anything out of the ordinary? Surely filling the oil with water should have been detected early on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the replies. The level was good in the morning and started right up....so it must have happened on warm up and first pass. It was like 20 that morning so it always takes a bit to heat the cab it seems. I read to replace those at like 2500hrs too. But I also read some going out way earlier like at 500 hrs. Makes no sense to have it designed like that and cause catastrophic engine damage. Happened on the 12.5 too. The parts and reman motor are outrageous right now. I think the motor could still have been saved at the light coming on. Still was running and pulling good with no smoke. The tech struggling to start it and so many codes on there should have said to check something.....but who knows. It has been a good tractor otherwise. So the 9000 series R doesnt have this?
 

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slider
How is the crankshaft and camshaft?
I re read your original post says you have sunken liners. I don't think that really can be attributed to the water pump failure.
Its possible to repair your engine if enough of the main parts survived.
At the minimum its going to need set of liners and pistons, bearings and a complete new head.
You almost need a complete tear down crank out, camshaft out, oil pump out, turbo checked to get a complete picture of the damages and cost.
Who knows how the fuel injectors might have been affected by the high heat on the head.
Things can snowball in a hurry.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Cam and crank looked good. Yeah the liner thing wasn't caused by the pump. Was built at the same time all those 9770 sunken liners thing happened. So probably similar thing. They put spacers in those. The only scuff was on one piston and the head was cracked in 4 spots above that one. Couldn't dig in it with finger nail but could feel it. With the sunken liners on top of that they would have to come out too. The head cracked when all that smoke happened....no where for the water to go. That's the thing we are so far in on labor and those parts that it doesn't make sense or worth the risk to rebuild it. For another 20000 everything is new. If John Deere is taking that stupid design risk , at least put some sensor fail safes in there somewhere , that have to be overridden after certain steps are taken to check it out!!
 

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Anyone who hasn’t heard of the 12.5/13.5 water pump issues has been living under a rock… lol However I had a 9420 that had 9200 hrs on it on the original pump. But yeah cheaper to just keep changing it at 2500hrs just for the piece of mind. If the seal goes and takes out the bearing it screws up
The timing of the cam shaft and causes a whole boatload of problems
 

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Deere don‘t have the best 4th drive tractors… I own a 9320. Should probably get it in for a inspection. Water pump done at 3000 hours
 

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I'd say the 13.5 (and the 12.5 before it) are not lemons by any means. Deere must have thousands of units out there and the failure rate is pretty low, doubtlessly equivalent to any other brand. For the unlucky ones it's pretty horrible of course, and very costly. Deere is still using this engine to this day. Was it a flawed design? Maybe? My 12.5 and 13.5 engines have given me years of faithful service and I expect years more. It's worth it to me to replace the water pumps as a matter of maintenance (coolant needs to be changed anyway haha). If one blew up would I replace it with another John Deere? Probably, but not out of blind brand loyalty.

We can't draw statistical conclusions about mean time between failure with anecdotal reports online. Only Deere knows the true failure rate, but I'm betting it's quite low.

Remember all the folks complaining about failed Iveco engines a few years back on the forum? Last winter the local Case dealer put the third engine in a quad track on warranty. I'm sure the owner isn't too impressed with Case quality, but overall the Ivecos are pretty reliable.
 

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Deere don‘t have the best 4th drive tractors… I own a 9320. Should probably get it in for a inspection. Water pump done at 3000 hours
I figure an inspection at any color dealership will always cost at least $10-15k. I'm usually right, but it's money well spent once in a while. If they can tighten up your axle end play or catch an axle bearing before it's worn out that can save a lot of money over replacing an entire differential. John Deere considers our 9220 to be a "classic" tractor now. Yet I was surprised the relatively clean bill of health the inspection gave it. We had the axle bearing shimmed, valve clearance adjusted, and bushings replaced in the hinge and steering cylinders if I recall.
 

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Deere don‘t have the best 4th drive tractors… I own a 9320. Should probably get it in for a inspection. Water pump done at 3000 hours
The Deere seemed good at the start but quite a few of the neighbours are having failures with relatively low hours.
Injectors seem to be a problem and pricey Jimmy Pattison men won't change one bad one they change a whole set at around $20k I damn near fell over.
I'll have to ask my buddy that bleeds green what all happened when the back end all crapped out and he dropped $30k into that after 2 sets of injectors, the first set were JD remans that failed a little past a year so no warranty the 2nd time they put new JD ones in. The fan drive was all worn out needed several thousand in parts there and of course new water pump.
 

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I know of 4 engine failures and I mean failures! Rod through the blocks and water pump engine grenades within 15 miles of me. Green light almost always is a water pump to cover their ass. Buddy had 2 9870's and both were replaced with well under 1500 hrs. It's just expensive routine maintenance to owning one of these. Engines are the life blood of every machine and if it's reliability is questionable so is the machine it's in. To each is own but there are far more reliable engines in different brand combines. Neighbors had 4 Deeres. One never left the yard all fall with electrical problems that dealers can't seem to fix. He ended up buying an 8120 Case because he was fed up getting honed by Deere and no results. Had to try something different and he admits far more grain and canola in the hopper and can go much faster in canola with less losses. Fuel usage/acre far less as well. I never considered fuel a big issue but with prices they are today I sure do. My A85 with a C13 will be getting a tune. 18 gal/hr ain't no joke.
 

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Environmentalist have been forcing the goodness out of lubrication oil for a while now.


Well that is real interesting. Here over the years I thought oils were improved but according to those articles that is not the case.
The manufacturers have upped the hours between their service intervals several times, years ago the standard oil change interval was 100 hours.
The oils may very well have something to do with why the Deere engines are having camshaft failures the lobes are disappearing.
Don't think oil would have much effect on the Deere water pump failures. Usually those water pumps have separate sealed bearings pre packed with grease.
I'll discuss this with the neighbour a former JD tech he was asking me why their STS JD combine would have ate the cam lobes with not many hours on it despite having regular oil change maintenance being done.
 
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