Are your Bad Boy Mower problems getting you down on your knees? You are not alone in this situation. Despite the great fame that Bad Boy Mowers enjoys, some users might need help with a few issues now and then. 

Bad Boy Mower Problems can be frustrating, from excessively vibrating engines to blunt blades. But luckily, these problems don’t mean ditching your bad boy. You can still restore its old glory in some simple steps.

This comprehensive blog post will unmask the real suspects behind Bad Boy zero-turn mower issues and reliable remedies. So, grab your wrench, as you are about to whip your bad boy back into its original grooming shape. 

The Most Common Problems With Bad Boy Mower

 If you know some basics of DIY Zero-Turn mower troubleshooting, you might save your dimes. Instead of buying a new mower or hiring a professional mechanic, you can go on with your uninterrupted mowing routine.

1- Starting Difficulty or Failure

Bad Boy mower starting difficulties or failure are disheartening and daunting but you can’t go wrong with their diagnosis. Now let’s look at some of these major causes and their suitable fixes.

  • Dead Battery: When your mower’s battery charges slowly or has corroded terminals, you should know that it has gone kaputt. Exhibiting such symptoms means you need to bid the old champ farewell. 
  • Choked Air Filter: A clogged air filter restricts the airflow, leading to engine starting failures or malfunctions. Instead of leaving the engine gasping for air, you should free the filter from blockage or ditch it for a new one. 
  • Faulty spark plug: Besides the usual engine sputtering and stalling, you can identify a bad spark plug from its physical appearance. Look for erosion, soot buildup, or cracks on the insulator or electrodes. While buildup can be cleaned, erosion or cracks point to the need for a new spark plug. 
  • Malfunctioning ignition switch: While less common, a faulty ignition switch disrupts the electrical signal, leaving your bad boy in silent mode. This component controls the electrical power flow to the engine. 

To correctly address this issue, inspect the switch and look for wear and tear signs. Replace the damaged switch and take a look at the coil. Tighten any loose connections or look for corrosion. Replace the coil if it is no longer functional.  


Remember, regular fuel checks are mandatory. An empty tank or stale fuel prevents proper starting sequence. So, keep the tank clean and adequately filled with fresh fuel to enjoy the non-stop roaring of your bad boy mower

2- Improper Alignment 

Incorrect wheel alignment makes your bad boy appear like a drunken sailor on a windy ship. 

There are various factors affecting the rear and front wheels as they turn, leading to alignment issues, such as:

  • Working on uneven terrain 
  • Hitting rouge curbs
  • A flat tire or loose components 

Common symptoms of improper alignment include:

You can detect imbalanced bad boy mower alignment through these signs:

  • Vibration in the steering wheel
  • The mower pulls to one side
  • Wear signs on one of the wheels 

Once you are certain about the presence of alignment problems, you should go for these common troubleshooting steps:

  1. Adjust the tire pressure according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Adjusting tire pressure may require professional intervention. 
  2. Worn tires will need replacing by a mechanic. 
  3. Inspect the bushings and tire rods to tighten them up if they are loose. 

While addressing these common causes, you might want to go beyond the obvious and check these parts:

  • Bent Spindles: They result from accidental bumps leading to a tilted wheel. Look under the wheels for crooked metal shafts.   
  • Worn-out Ball Joints: While connecting the components of the steering system, ball joints may suffer from wear and tear with frequent use. Replacing worn joints can resolve this problem. 

3- Gas Leakage

If you smell gasoline mixed with the scent of freshly cut grass, it might be a sign of gas leakage in your bad boy mower. Gas leakage is not only inconvenient but also a safety hazard. 

The following are a few of the common culprits of gas leakage in a bad boy mower:

  • Damaged fuel lines: Frequent exposure to heat and vibrations may cause fuel lines to loosen or crack. Tighten them up if you can, but major cracks need professional servicing. 
  • Problematic fuel pump: A fuel pump might leak internally or externally when worn out or damaged. Aside from sniffing the fuel system and looking for visible leaks, you might notice an unusual noise coming from the pump. Replace the faulty pump with professional help.  
  • Cap chaos or an overfilled tank: A loose or damaged tank cap or an overfilled tank will make gasoline ooze out. Check the cap for proper tightening or replacement if necessary. Also, stick to Bad Boy’s recommended fuel level. 
  • Blocked tank vent: Carbon deposits and stale fuel residue can clog this vent, causing pressure buildup and fuel leakage. Clean the vent and install it back in place. 
  • Problematic Carburetor: A cracked carburetor housing is a one-way ticket to fuel leaks. This calls for immediate replacement, while stuck floats can be resolved by cleaning or repositioning. 

4- Unequal Mowing

Is your bad boy leaving uneven patches instead of straight and even grass? This issue points to various culprits, including:

  • Dull or blunt blades: Dull mower blades won’t make a clean and even cut. You can sharpen the blades and balance them adequately. If this doesn’t work, replace all the blades. This replacement routine is recommended once a year. 
  • Uneven terrain: Sometimes, the nature of the landscape you are working on leads to uneven mowing. To fix this, you should always check the landscape before working and adjust the deck height and mowing patterns accordingly. 
  • Wrong tire pressure: Inconsistent tire pressure affects the consistency of deck height level and the cutting quality. To fix this problem, you should regularly check the tire pressure and equalize it for a uniform cutting. 

5- Vibrations In the Cutting Deck 

How many times were your mowing sessions interrupted by unusual vibrations from the deck? When your mowing deck shakes and vibrates like a possessed jackhammer, the overall mowing quality will sink, as well as the machine’s health. 

Let’s focus on some usual suspects and less common culprits:

  • Unbalanced blades: Sand and debris can make bad boy mower’s cutting blades wear unevenly. Over time, a shuddering deck will be the best-case scenario, as continuous vibrations will cause wear and tear. Sharpen the blades equally to achieve balance or replace them if needed. 
  • Bad belt or pulley: The belt and pulleys work together to transfer the engine power to the rotating cutting blades. With wear and tear, the belt will cause ongoing deck jitters. Replace a cracked or damaged belt. Refer to the manual to check the correct alignment of the pulleys and realign them. 
  • Loose mounting bolts: These rubber isolators ensure the engine vibrations are not disturbing. With frequent use, these bolts might need re-tightening. If they are worn out or cracked, replace them.    

In some cases, a bad boy mower might disturb you with engine vibration without any physical problem. In this case, consider investing in a vibration dampener kit. 

6- Unreliable Hydrostatic Transmission 

Weak or rogue transmission is not an exclusive problem for bad boy mowers but in various zero-turn mowers and tractors. This system acts as a conductor inside the mower’s body, directing the engine power to the wheels through the hydrostatic fluid. 

When this system weakens, you’ll notice sluggish frequent starts, bad cutting, power loss, and jerky performance.  

To diagnose this problem take a look at the following:

  • Hydraulic fluid levels: Insufficient fluid will weaken the system’s performance. So, refill the tank as needed. 
  • Poor hydraulic quality: If the hydraulic oil tank looks like a swamp, rich in contaminants, this calls for an immediate oil change.
  • Air bubbles: These small air locks or pockets prevent the smooth flow of fluid all over the system. You can fix this by bleeding the system. If uncertain, refer to the manual or seek professional help. 

If you want to DIY fix it, follow these steps:

  1. Park in the “N” position.
  2. Disengage the clutch.
  3. Bring the levers to the forward position and hold this position for 3-5 seconds.
  4. Bring the levers to the “R” position. 
  5. Repeat this process 5 times and the air should be purged.    

7- Smoky Emissions After Starting  

Smoky fumes accompanying your bad boy mower might be a result of minor or major issues. There are different colors of smoke that your bad boy might emit: blue, white, and dark. 

Here’s what you should investigate when your bad boy smokes:

  • Choked air filter: In this case, air won’t flow smoothly into the carburetor, leading to burning more oil and leaving behind dark smoke. Clean or replace the filter depending on the situation. 
  • Malfunctioning air pump: a defective pump can deliver too much fuel that will be burnt inside the mower and cause dark smoke. Replace the defective pump.
  • Gasket leakage:  While their main function is to prevent leaks by sealing the gaps between the engine parts, damaged gaskets allow different fluids to leak and burn excessively. Worn gaskets are a major cause of blue or white smoke, which is way more hazardous than dark smoke. Change the leaky gaskets.   

Bad Boy Mower Problems: Are They a Deal-Breaker? 

While bad boy mowers aren’t immune to problems, they are far from being deal-breakers. If you know a thing or two about zero-turn mower basic maintenance, you may prevent some of these issues.

Furthermore, your DIY knowledge will qualify you to address issues like uneven cuts, starting difficulty, and unusual vibrations. Don’t let these simple and common issues prevent your lawn from looking well-groomed with bad boy mowers’ precision and top-notch performance. 

Embrace now the basic maintenance fixes, such as regular filter cleaning (or replacing), oil changing, blade balancing, and fresh fuel filling.  

If you want further insight into more common bad boy mower problems, you can take a look at this blog post:

In case you are interested in other leading zero-turn mowers, browse these blog posts:

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