John Deere 855 Problems (How To Solve)

As a John Deere user, you get the experience of one of the best products in the industry. However, it is not immune from its problems. Also, it is quite annoying when you stumble across one. 

So what John Deere 855 problems are expected?

John Deere 855 can be hard to start sometimes or just shuts off abruptly. There is also the issue of engine overheating. For hydraulic systems, there are problems of low oil pressure or hitch control.

Some other common problems are related to its steering, transmission, and electrical systems. 

But all of these problems are solvable, some even by yourself. So continue to find out more. 

John Deere 855 Engine Problems

Problems Reasons Solutions
Hard to start or Doesn’t start Clogged fuel filter 

Air in the fuel tank

Clogged fuel injection nozzles

Replace the fuel filter. 

Bleed air from the system. 

Replace fuel injection nozzles.

Shuts off suddenly Improper adjustment of fuel injection pump timing

Clogged fuel filter

Adjust fuel injection pump timing.

Replace the fuel filter.

Overheating Clogged radiator core Leaking radiator cap

Worn fan belt

Clean radiator core.

Install a new cap.

Replace the fan belt.

Some of the problems are easy to solve. However, certain precautions must be taken for each. 

John Deere 855 Starting Problems

If the engine has trouble starting, it is because of not getting enough fuel to start the ignition. Now that happens whenever the fuel filter or injection nozzle is clogged. Therefore, solving it will make the starting smoother.

To solve this we have three options. Replacing the fuel filter and replacing the fuel injector nozzle.

Solution 1: Replacing The Fuel Filter

  • Step 01: Pop the hood and locate the fuel filter.
  • Step 02: Loosen the bolts connected to the filter.
  • Step 03: Remove the fuel filter.
  • Step 04: Put the new filter and connect all the bolts.
  • Step 05: Add the required amount of fuel.
  • Step 06: Close the hood and turn on the engine.

Remember, to put a bucket beneath to collect all the residual fuel.

Solution 2: Replace The Fuel Injector Nozzle

Now, due to the complicated nature of this process, we suggest you consult a professional for this work. But if you are still into it, these are the steps:

  • Step 01: Find the fuel supply line after opening the hood.
  • Step 02: Close the fuel valve in this fuel supply line to avoid potential leakage.
  • Step 03: Now remove the high-pressure fuel injection line assembly but while you are doing that make sure to cover it with a clean vinyl bag to protect it from dust.
  • Step 04: Loosen the fuel line nuts at the fuel injectors and the injection pump.
  • Step 05: After that remove all the return fuel hoses from each fuel injector.
  • Step 06: Remove the bolts and washers from the retainers to the cylinder head.
  • Step 07: Make sure to remove the retainers.
  • Step 08: Finally, remove the fuel injector itself.
  • Step 09: You have to use a slide hammer for tapping the fuel injector out of the cylinder head.
  • Step 10: Remove the injector nozzle protector.
  • Step 11: Put in a fuel injector nozzle.
  • Step 12: Connect back everything in reverse order from the retainers to the fuel injection assembly itself.

Solution 3: Bleed Air Out Of The System

  • Step 01: Fill up the fuel tank.
  • Step 02: Locate the fuel filter.
  • Step 03: Find the bleeder screws and tighten it.
  • Step 04: Loosen the bleeder screw connected to the fuel injection pump. 
  • Step 05: Wait for the air bubbles to come out of the and now tighten the screw again.
  • Step 06: Loosen the fitting of the steel line from the injection pump.
  • Step 07: Start cranking the engine.
  • Step 08: Keep cranking until no air bubbles come out of the lines.
  • Step 09: Tighten the fittings back.
  • Step 10: Start the tractor.

Engine Shuts Off Suddenly

If your John Deere 855 doesn’t move, it is because of disruption in the fuel system. How do you solve it? By adjusting the pump timing and replacing the fuel filter. Following are the solutions to the engine shutting off suddenly:

Solution 1: Adjust The Fuel Injection Pump Timing

Before I begin, you need to find out whether it is advanced or retard fuel injection pump timing.

  • Step 01: Pop your hood, and find the injection pump first.
  • Step 02: Grab a dial indicator, and make sure that it has been calibrated. Install the dial indicator adapter and clamp it to the pump plunger opening.
  • Step 03: Find the flywheel of the engine.
  • Step 04: There is a target timing mark in this flywheel but you will also find a timing reference mark at the flywheel back plate or housing. Make sure to align both of these. 
  • Step 05: Now check the dial indicator. If it says less than 2.5 mm or 0.098 in. then the injection timing is retarded however for more than 2.5mm or 0.098 in. the injection timing is advanced. 
  • Step 06: Before dealing with either, you have to loosen the nuts connecting the injection pump to the gear case.
  • Step 07: Loosen the rear brackets as well.
  • Step 08: Now, if the reading says ‘retarded’ rotate the top of the fuel injection pump toward the engine.
  • Step 09: But if it says ‘advanced’ rotate the top of the fuel injection pump away from the engine.
  • Step 10: Keep an eye on the dial indicator. Stop when it reads 2.5mm.
  • Step 11: Check if the target timing mark and timing reference mark are aligned or not.
  • Step 12: If both have the correct result, your timing is adjusted.
  • Step 13: Tighten the nuts connected to the gear case and rear brackets.
  • Step 14: Finally, remove the dial indicator, adapter, plug from the plunger opening, and clamp from the fuel return line.
  • Step 15: Now, turn on the engine and look for any leaks.

Solution 2: Replace The Fuel Filter

The process of changing the fuel filter has been discussed

Engine Overheating

Engine overheating has direct correlation to the radiator system. If the radiator is clogged or if there is any leakage in the cap then there will be engine overheating.

Before working on the fan belt, check the condition of the radiator. If it is dirty or there is any leakage. 

If it is dirty, clean the radiator core by rinsing it properly, and for leakage, just change the radiator core and check for further leaking issues. Now, if it is neither of these then the fan belt could be the reason.

  • Step 01: Find the alternator first because it holds the fan belt.
  • Step 02: Loosen the alternator strap bolt and pivot bolt to get the belt slack. 
  • Step 03: Remove the bolts on each side of the fan shroud.
  • Step 04: Now remove the old belt and put the new belt in its place.
  • Step 05: Put this new belt over the pulley, fan, and alternator.
  • Step 06: Finally, tighten the bolts on the alternator and fan shroud.

John Deere 855 Hydraulic Problems

Problems Reasons Solutions
Hydraulic Oil Pressure Low Insufficient hydraulic oil level

Clogged hydraulic fluid filter

Faulty hydraulic pump

Maintain hydraulic oil level.

Repair hydraulic fluid filter.

Replace the Hydraulic Fluid Filter.

Replace the hydraulic pump.

Hydraulic system overheating Wrong hydraulic fuel type 

Air in hydraulic pipes

Use the correct hydraulic fuel type.

Bleed air from the system.

The hitch can’t be raised or lowered Faulty hydraulic pump Faulty main relief valve Repair or replace the hydraulic pump.

Adjusting relief valve pressure.

As observed, the problems are either due to problems in the system or the hydraulic fluid itself.

Hydraulic Oil Pressure Low

The decline in hydraulic oil pressure is because of a drop in hydraulic level and a damaged hydraulic system. These are the methods to get Hydraulic Oil Pressure to the proper level:

Solution 1: Maintain The Hydraulic Oil Level

Firstly, make sure the hydraulic oil is within the capacity of 4.50 gallons or 17 L. Use a dipstick to find out the hydraulic oil level

Solution 2: Replace The Hydraulic Fluid Filter

  • Step 01: Start running the engine to warm up the oil.
  • Step 02: Find out the filters and put a drain pan beneath to collect the oil.
  • Step 03: Remove the filters and let the residual oil keep pouring.
  • Step 04: Replace the oil plug.
  • Step 05: Fill up the tank with the required quantity of oil.
  • Step 06: Start the engine and check for leaks.

Hydraulic System Overheating

If the hydraulic system overheats it is because of using the wrong hydraulic oil type. However, another reason is air trapped in the system.


First, check whether the hydraulic fuel you used is correct or not. If it isn’t, use the correct grade. For John Deere 855, it is low viscosity hydraulic oil of any company recommended. 

Now, if hydraulic fuel grade is not the problem then air in the system is. If it is in a dissolved condition then keep the engine running and the air dissolved in the fluid will vaporize. 

But what if the air is not dissolved? In that case, loosen the hose connected to the hydraulic pump and up the lever connected. Once the fuel starts leaking out, tighten it back. Keep doing this for other hoses. This will bleed out all the air. 

Hitch Can’t Be Raised or Lowered

Another common issue is if the hitch can’t be raised or lowered properly. It is because of problems with the hydraulic pump and main relief valve. The following are the methods to solve this problem:

Solution 1: Repair The Hydraulic Pump

Due to the relatively complicated nature, we suggest consulting an expert for this task. However, if you are willing to DIY then disassemble, inspect, and replace it yourself.

Solution 2: Replace The Main Relief Valve

Mainly, if the pressure is low then the relief valve is going to underperform and not lift as you would expect. So, all it requires is to increase the pressure by repairing the main relief valve. Here is how you do it:

  • Step 01: Remove the side cover and the tunnel cover.
  • Step 02: Remove all the surrounding knobs and then the center panel.
  • Step 03: At this point, you should be able to see the relief valve.
  • Step 04: Clean the surroundings of the relief valve.
  • Step 05: There must be a coupler near the valve, remove it and put a dial indicator there. The purpose here is to measure the pressure.
  • Step 06: Turn on the engine and check the pressure, it should be lower than expected.
  • Step 07: Bring out the main relief valve and pull out the spring.
  • Step 08: You will see that it consists of a collar and shims in it. Remove the old shims and put new one in its place.
  • Step 09: Put the spring and then the main relief valve back. 
  • Step 10: Turn on the engine and check the pressure. If it is more than the previous value then the hitch will work properly.
  • Step 11: Now remove the dial indicator and connect back everything accordingly.

John Deere 855 Hydrostatic Transmission Problems

Problems Reasons Solutions
Transmission Noise Defective speed control linkage

Transmission overload Faulty relief valve

Repair speed control linkage.

Reduce load.

Replace the relief valve.

Insufficient Power Insufficient transmission oil Maintain sufficient transmission oil.
Transmission Oil Leaking Blocked oil drain line 

Defective seals

Faulty gasket

Clean the oil drain line. 

Replace seals.

Replace gasket.

Now, the next step is to go through each of these transmission problems and find how to solve them. 

Transmission Noise

Transmission-related noise is mainly from faulty speed control linkage and relief valve. However, some other key reasons are faulty components in the transmission, transmission overload, and defective transmission fluid. Following are some of the solutions for this problem:

Solution 1: Replace The Linkage

  • Step 01: Drain the transaxle and then remove the drawbar.
  • Step 02: Remove the sheet metal panel and transmission drive shaft.
  • Step 03: Then you have to remove the MFWD drive shaft.
  • Step 04: After all this, you will find the linkage connected to the transmission. Remove it and replace it with a new one.
  • Step 05: Now, connect back the MFWD and transmission drive shaft.
  • Step 06: Connect the sheet metal panel and fill up the transaxle.

Solution 2: Replace The Relief Valve

The process of replacing the relief valve has been discussed already. 

Insufficient Power

Lack of transmission power is directly related to not having enough transmission oil.

How to solve the lack of power? Just add enough transmission oil and maintain the capacity. Now, the capacity here is 18 qts or 17 L. It’s easy to check the hydraulic oil level. All you need is a dipstick. 

Transmission Oil Leaking

Hydraulic seals and gaskets help to seal the hydraulic cylinder and maintain the pressure. However, any damage or wearing out of these components means transmission oil leak in john deere 855.

To solve this, check the oil drain line. If there is any leakage in the drain line itself then the transmission oil will leak. Replace this drain line.

Other important steps are replacing the seals and gaskets. These tasks are slightly complicated and we recommend consulting a professional. 

John Deere 855 Steering Problems 

Problems Reasons Solutions
Difficulty in steering Air in the hydraulic steering system

Dirty steering filter

Insufficient steering fluid level

Bleed air from the system Replace filter.

Add more steering fluid.

Excessive free play Worn steering shaft

Worn-out steering column

Damaged steering pump

Replace the steering valve.

Replace the steering pump.

Due to its connection to the hydraulic system, solving problems related to hydraulics will have an impact on the steering system as well. Now, you need to know how to deal with each of these problems.

Difficulty in Steering

If there is any air trapped in the steering system or if the steering filter itself is dirty then you will have a hard time moving the steering wheel. But check the steering fluid as well. 

To solve this problem, at first, bleed air out of the system as discussed here. But if trapped air is not the reason then you need to replace the filter. The steps have been discussed

Excessive Free Play

A key symptom here is your steering wheels becoming looser. Steering free play in John Deere 855 happens because of the worn-out steering shaft and column. Although a damaged steering pump can be the reason for this problem as well. 

To solve this problem you have to replace the steering valve or just reassemble the entire steering system.

John Deere 855 Electrical Problems 

Problems Reasons Solutions
Battery not charging The battery cable connection is corroded

Faulty terminal connector

Repair the battery cable connection.

Replace battery.

Starter not working properly Low battery power

Damaged battery 

Improper wiring

Damaged Starter motor 

Charge battery.

Replace the battery.

Fix the wiring.

Replace starter motor. 

The battery is related to most of the problems and working with the battery will solve the electrical issues. 

Battery Not Charging

Your battery not charging properly is because of a corroded cable connection and faulty terminal connector. The following are the solutions of this problem:

Solution 1: Fix The Wiring

Check for all the cable connections surrounding the battery. If there is a loose connection then tighten it. But if the wire itself is damaged then change it. 

Solution 2: Replace The Battery

  • Step 01: Pop the hood and find the battery.
  • Step 02: Remove the negative (-) battery cable first.
  • Step 03: Remove the positive (+) cable.
  • Step 04: Lift the battery out. 
  • Step 05: Put the new battery in.
  • Step 06: Connect the cables starting with the positive one.
  • Step 07: Close the hood and turn on the engine.

Always remember to remove the negative cable first and connect the positive cable first. 

Starter Not Working Properly

Apart from the faulty starter motor, the battery is also responsible for your starter not working properly.

Solution 1: Charge The Battery

  • Step 01: Pop the hood and locate the battery.
  • Step 02: Disconnect the charger from the electric connection.
  • Step 03: Connect the positive charging cable to the positive terminal.
  • Step 04: Connect the negative charging cable to the negative terminal.
  • Step 05: Charge the battery properly.
  • Step 06: Remove the charging cables starting with the negative. 
  • Step 07: Close the hood. 

Solution 2: Replace The Battery

The steps for replacing the battery have been discussed.

Solution 3: Fix The Wiring

The process of wiring fixing has been explained

Solution 4: Replace The Starter Motor

Finally, if the starter motor itself is damaged then replace it. Locate the starter motor and change it with a new one.


Does John Deere 855 Use Briggs & Stratton Engines? 

No, John Deere 855 uses Yanmar 03-cylinder diesel engines.

Can I Use a 72 Inches Mower Deck On John Deere 855?

Yes, you can use both 72 and 60 inches Mower Decks on John Deere 855. 

Is 4WD Possible With John Deere 855?

Yes. However, the front tire for 4WD should have a dimension of 6.00 x 12.


So that covers all the key John Deere 855 problems. Most of it can be solved by yourself. But definitely seek professional help if you are not into DIY work.

Finally, check all the links given.

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