John Deere Fuel Shut Off Solenoid Problems: Here’s How To Fix

John Deere machines are some of the most popular, courtesy of their reliability. Their tractors and lawnmowers will serve you for a decent time with minimal disturbances, guaranteeing you an excellent time on the field.

While John Deere’s products are excellent, you may encounter some problems, such as fuel shut off solenoid failure. It is a severe problem you must address once you notice its signs. Stick on to learn more about this hitch and how to fix it.

What’s the Fuel Shut Off Solenoid?

The fuel shut off solenoid (FSS) is an electromagnetically-run valve system in the fuel line. Its purpose is to discontinue the fuel supply to the engine when not running. The valve’s design incorporates the solenoid system, which, if powered, will open the valve and allow fuel flow. 

When an electric current flows through the solenoid coil, it turns it into a magnet and will attract the valve’s plunger, causing a pull. The valve opens, and fuel flows to the engine. When electrical flow is absent, the valve’s plunger returns to its original shut form, preventing fuel flow.

The solenoid is a crucial component that prevents your engine from backfiring, and you can operate it manually or remotely. 

Common Fuel Shut Off Solenoid Problems

Your John Deere equipment may encounter two problems with the FSS:

  • A faulty close – The valve fails to open, meaning fuel will not flow to the engine, and the tractor or field equipment won’t run. 
  • A faulty open – The valve remains open and won’t cut off the fuel. Therefore, if the engine is running, it will keep on running.

The second situation is easy to control, and you can still operate your John Deere equipment. However, a faulty close calls for a fix or replacement for fuel to reach the engine. A faulty open is common on older diesel engines. If you own an older John Deere tractor, you will likely encounter this hiccup.

The other probable cause of a faulty FSS is a low battery or poor wiring. The electrical issues hinder the powering of the solenoid, causing its malfunction. 

Signs of Fuel Shut Off Solenoid Problems

The following are some signs of a faulty fuel shut off solenoid on your John Deere equipment. 

Engine Shut Off

A common sign of a faulty FSS is the engine shutting off. This issue is associated with a defective close since the fuel does not reach the engine. The engine will shut off abruptly without any warning, which can be frustrating if you are at work.

Hard Start

The other sign of a faulty solenoid is difficulty starting the engine. The ignition is rough, and you may need plenty of trials before the engine comes to life. 

Difficulty in Acceleration

Acceleration will be challenging if the solenoid is faulty. There is not enough fuel reaching the engine to boost its speed here. You may notice a jerking motion when you try to increase your speed. 


You may also notice black smoke from the engine. This issue is due to excess fuel supply, leading to incomplete combustion. Other signs of a bad solenoid are poor fuel economy and rough idling. 

How To Fix a Faulty Fuel Shut Off Solenoid

To fix a faulty FSS, you should start by testing the solenoid to see if it is in proper shape. The following are steps to follow when testing the fuel valve unit.

  • Locate and remove the solenoid from the fuel relay system. Be careful lest you cause damage to other systems.
  • Hold the solenoid assembly in a vice and get a 9-volt battery to test it. Ensure the prongs are visible and accessible.
  • Connect wires from the battery to the prongs. If the solenoid works, you will notice a little projection connecting to the valve plunger moving. If it doesn’t move, the solenoid is faulty, and you should replace or fix it.

If the solenoid is functional, you should check the electrical unit. Start with the battery, checking for its charge and whether it needs an upgrade. It is easy to know if the battery is the problem, as your car will have trouble igniting.

Next, inspect the wiring, which is a probable culprit, if everything else is in good shape. Fix the wires and see if the solenoid works.

Final Thoughts

The fuel shut off solenoid is an essential part of your equipment’s fuel system that controls fuel flow to the engine. This piece looks at the common issues affecting this valve controlling assembly and how to fix it.

The valve system may fail to open or close. Failing to open is the most challenging situation, as fuel will not reach the engine. Such a hitch requires you to replace the solenoid or bypass it. If the valve remains open, you can handle it, though some symptoms, like poor fuel economy, will require an immediate fix.