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Garden Tractors Discussion Forum

Re: Kohler K341 (16hp)

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Author  [Modern View]

11-03-2013 20:28:48

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IMHO, valves in a "flathead" engine are not likely to be the source of lots of smoke on startup, as there"s not much oil in the valve stem area in the first place, and it has to travel straight UP to get past the stem and into the intake port, vs. a "valve-in-head" engine where oil is drizzled over the valvespring/valvestem area, and simply has to move DOWNWARD to get to the intake port.

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Tom Arnold

11-04-2013 09:24:23

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 Re: Kohler K341 (16hp) in reply to Bob, 11-03-2013 20:28:48  
Sorry but I have to disagree.

In Section 11, Page 6 of the Kohler Service Manual, it states: "If a valve guide is worn beyond specifications, it will not guide the valve in a straight line. This may result in a burnt valve face or seat, loss of compression, and excessive oil consumption."

There is plenty of oil available to be sucked past worn guides because the crankcase breather also serves as the cover for the valve stem/springs. You must remove this cover in order to set the valve lash. During operation of the engine, the entire crankcase area is awash with an oil mist thanks to the dipper on the end of the connecting rod splashing the liquid oil.

The up and down movement of the piston creates positive and negative pressures inside the crankcase and the breather assembly addresses those pressures to neutralize them. A faulty breather will allow engine oil to drool out of the vent.

It does not take a lot of oil in the combustion chamber to create a bluish tinge in the exhaust gasses.

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11-04-2013 13:51:04

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 Re: Kohler K341 (16hp) in reply to Tom Arnold, 11-04-2013 09:24:23  
GOOD points, Tom! Breather problems are certainly a possibility, or simply a worn bore/rings.

As we know, with a properly functioning breather and rings that seal well, the engine will operated with NEGATIVE pressure in the crankcase, making it tough for the oil to defy gravity and move UPWARD.

(Crankcase negative pressure/manometer test is covered in 4.2 and 4.3 of the manual... 5" to 10" water column.)

While it's certainly POSSIBLE the guides are at fault, oil migration past worn valve guides comes up #5 out of the list of 5 causes of oil burning in the official Kohler manual.

Start at the top of the list/most likely cause and work from there. (Occam's razor)

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