Common Problems With John Deere 317 Skid Steer (Solutions Included)

Skid steers are loaders that do not have the traditional steering wheels for their steering mechanism. Instead, they rely on turning their wheels or tracks at different speeds and thus skidding to change their motion direction. John Deere 317 skid steer loader is a straight four cylinder diesel engine powered loader. The loader comes with either wheels or tracks for their movement. By either reducing or increasing one wheel side speed as compared to the other the turning is achieved and hence the name skid steer. Loaders can have different attachments to suit various job requirements. The 317 skid steer can have attachments from pallet forks, buckets, grapple buckets, dozer blades, hydraulic augers and snow scrapers attachments. Problems with John Deere 317 Skid Steer loaders vary as indicated below.

Table of Contents

Starting Problem

The problem of starting the engine is common in many loaders including the John Deere 317 skid steer loader start up may be affected by factors discussed below.

Defective Battery

Defective batteries are a common cause for startup problems in John Deere 317 skid steer loaders. This is either due to damaged battery plates or terminals, very low battery electrolyte or excessively discharged battery. The first thing to look at is checking the battery voltage using test meters. If the battery voltage is low recharge and test. John Deere 317 skid steer loaders require periodic checking and cleaning of battery terminals. Damaged terminals are also another reason why voltage loss is experienced in loaders. Damaged terminals require proper terminal build up using homogenous pure material.

Broken Electrical Circuit

The other thing to check to address start up failure problem in John Deere 317 skid steer loaders is broken or loose electrical connections. Inspect all the cables and connections for damages, short circuits and broken lines. All broken connections need to be rejoined and properly insulated. Bare wires need insulation to avoid coming into contact with other metal points resulting in short circuits. This should normally solve the problem. John Deere 317 skid steer loader suppliers offer manuals for servicing of their loaders which should be treated primary troubleshooting and servicing guide to avoid these problems.

Hydraulic Problems

John Deere 317 skid steer loaders perform loading operations which require tremendous power for lifting and for stock piling operations. The skid steer loader makes use of the hydraulic system to achieve this. Various hydraulic system components are prone to failure due to high pressure application and wear and tear. Typical hydraulic system components include the hydraulic pump, pressure lines or pipes, cylinders and fittings. All these components are critical to achieve and maintain the hydraulic power to do work. John Deere 317 skid steer loaders experiences hydraulic problems and hence require periodic service inspections as recommended by supplier.

No Power to Load

This problem is common with John Deere 317 skid steer loaders. The loaders in order to carry out loading operations, it must be able to raise the bucket and the load. In case of the loader failing to lift the load, the first thing to look for is the hydraulic pump. The purpose of the pump is to supply all the pressure lines with hydraulic fluid and maintain high pressure to operate the lifting cylinders supported by rams on either side. If the pump is defective, there is no supply of hydraulic fluid to operate the cylinders which lifts and lowers the bucket. Fault hydraulic pumps require pump specialists to repair and fit back onto the machine. It is also recommended to engage John Deere 317 skid steer loader service personnel for problem solving in skid steer loader hydraulic pump repairs. The other thing to look for when there is no power at all to lift the bucket is hydraulic pipe connections. Worn out fittings results in excessive loss of hydraulic fluid and hence the required or adequate fluid pressure is not achieved to perform the lifting operations.

Bucket Raises and Fails to Lower

John Deere 317 skid steer loaders sometimes experience this problem. The raising and lowering of loader buckets depends on hydraulic fluid flow via different pipe lines. To achieve this, there are valves fitted at various pressure line points, control valves and non-return valves. Their purpose is to allow sequential fluid flow as directed by operator. If the valve components gets worn out or gets sticky due to fluid contamination, this results in bucket failing to lower down. The valve which opens to direct fluid flow back to the tank and release the pressure from cylinder to retract requires cleaning or replacement to solve this problem. In worst case scenarios, the cylinder piston if bent or has dents may result in this problem. Defective cylinder piston requires replacement.

Slow Piston Movement

This problem occurs when piston movement is slower than it is supposed to and is common with John Deere 317 skid steer loaders. Mostly slow piston movement is a result of hydraulic oil leakages. The most obvious sign is contamination due to lost fluid. Leakages are as a result of loose pipe connections and fittings, burst hydraulic pipes and worn out fluid seals on various system components. The other reason for this might be use of incorrect oil grade. Various hydraulic oils have different properties for different applications. Use of oils with a higher viscosity than the recommended will cause this problem. It is recommended to follow John Deere 317 skid steer loader service manual for solving problems related to hydraulic oil guidelines. Loose connections require to be tightened and all worn out seals replaced to avoid leakages. Burnt pipes require replacement due to high pressure application. Piston movement should return to normal after attending to these issues. The pump may also be the root cause of the problem. If pump performance deteriorates, it may end up pumping slowly and thus result in slow piston movement. Again the recommendation is to source repairs for the unit or replace with a now unit.

Tracking Problem

This problem is common with John Deere 317 skid steer tracking loaders. The major problem is poor track tension. This in most cases results in track moving out of position. The tracking system of John Deere 317 skid steer loaders consist of track shoes, rollers, link assemblies, carrier rollers, idlers and sprockets. All these units need to be periodically inspected and make sure they are intact and all bolts tightened. Alignment of rollers and pins should also be checked to ensure that the track remains in position. Periodic lubrication is critical to maintain all rolling parts or components working efficiently and increase their life span. For detailed track system troubleshooting, John Deere supplies manuals with schematics for all the system components.