Diagnostic Puzzle - 05 Snapper Rider (series 23), 28" cut, 12.5 Briggs, OHV, Elec.
I purchased a used Snapper riding lawnmower from a private seller. It is 10 years old but has been garage kept and very rarely used. It actually looks like it rolled off the assembly line. I looked at it and tested it one evening, then picked it up the following day. Both days the unit started right up with no problems. When I picked it up, I drove it up sellers ramps into a standard pickup and traveled about 30 minutes to my home. Offloading was more difficult, because I had no ramps ... so I backed the truck close to a hill in my yard and pulled the unit out backwards until the rear tires hit the ground. I then tilted it up on end drove the truck forward and lowered the unit back down. Nothing was done aggressively. When I tried to start the unit, nothing happened. I turned the key, and silence. So I rolled it into the garage and started my diagnostics. Here is how that progressed:
1) I checked the battery with my multi-meter. It showed 12.4 Volts (or 75% charged).
2) I used the multi-meter to check continuity at the following: Break/Clutch safety switch; seat safety switch; blade safety switch; and ignition switch. All appeared to be working properly (depressed and not depressed).
3) I pulled the 12 V ignition switch wire from the solenoid (3 pole) and used my multi-meter (positive to the ignition switch wire that I pulled off the solenoid and negative to ground - frame of unit). Sat on the unit with break fully engaged, in neutral, and blade disengaged. I showed no voltage going to the solenoid. This told me that I had a problem with one of the safety switches ... but I had tested them all!
4) I then put a screw driver across the + and - poles on the solenoid, which engaged the starter (assumed at that point that the solenoid and starter were not the issue.
5) Finally I checked the 10 amp/32V fuse in-line on the small red wire coming from the battery side of the solenoid, and it was blown. I went to the auto store and bought a similar fuse and installed it. I sat back on the unit with break fully engaged, blade disengaged, and in neutral and turned the key ... absolutely nothing (silence). I then checked the new fuse and it too had blown.
I am stumped as to what could have happened to my new/used Snapper riding mower ... and how to repair it, without taking it in to a mechanic. ANY help from this forum would be greatly appreciated! John