MX condenser screen is worthless

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
So I spent a few hours on a hot day last week out in a tall field just running a flail mower. Grass was pushing up to nearly the top of the hood. Mine is an MX 6000 cab model. After about an hour, the AC started to get warm. After 75 minutes, the temp gauge climbed. I shut down to clean the screens, not unusual. The main radiator screen is good. It rides on a track, is all metal, covers the whole radiator, and slides easily out the side. The AC condenser screen is the biggest afterthought garbage design I’ve seen. I saw it and had to recheck the side of the tractor to see if it said Kubota instead of a Korean or Indian manufacturer. It literally is a floppy home-style window screen. It is about 2” short on either side of the condenser. It also does not sit right up to the condenser, but is forward of it. The screen “mounts” via two grommets hanging on hooks. You might as well not even have a screen here. The whole HVAC system is basically identical to the Grand L 60 series, which has a nice full width easy to remove steel screen. The big difference is that the MX has a longer nose than the L60 and has the air cleaner above the battery ahead of the radiator instead of above the engine like the l60 series. Instead of spending a few moments engineering a quality screen and easy method to remove it,
Kubota took the cheap and worthless way out. I’m truly disgusted. The condenser is totally plugged and I really couldn’t get cold air the rest of the time mowing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

ve9aa

Well-known member

Equipment
tg1860, bx2380
Apr 11, 2021
466
256
63
NB, Canada
I don't have A/C on either of my Kubotas /

Sorry you're having a bad day. :-(
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
I don't have A/C on either of my Kubotas /

Sorry you're having a bad day. :-(
Lol, I understand. I’ve mowed for years on open station tractors. The thing is, without AC in a cab tractor, you’re basically in a greenhouse. All you can open is the back window which does very little.
 

D2Cat

Well-known member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
L305DT, B7100HST, TG1860, TG1860D, L4240
Mar 27, 2014
10,828
1,994
113
40 miles south of Kansas City
Sounds like you're going to have to redesign and fab up something that works OR take a good battery powered leaf blower with you on jobs.
 

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
Yeah, I’m going to try to fab up a better screen. I might buy the one from the L60 series since I believe the condenser is the same. Just need to figure out how to get it out the side. Probably the drivers side since the accumulator / driver is on the passenger side.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
Well, the condenser is not the same. The compressor is, but not the condenser. It might still be the same size but with different mounts. The L4060 screen is $50, and the guides are about $18 per side. I was thinking of buying the screen anyway, since it is still a better fit than the factory floppy screen, but the reason the screen is floppy is so you can bend it around the battery and air canister. I need to be super careful with the condenser - its thin and a new one is about $1400. Parts seem to be crazy expensive. For example, the EGR cooler is $800, but on my 6.7L Ford Powerstroke, its much larger cooler is only about $400.
 

GreensvilleJay

Well-known member

Equipment
BX23-S
Apr 2, 2019
4,912
1,628
113
Greensville,Ontario,Canada
re: the reason the screen is floppy is so you can bend it around the battery and air canister.

man that's great 'engineering'.... ;)

Is there any room 'up air' of the 'floppy' to make your own REAL prescreen screen ? Even if not 'tight', something to take some of the crud before plugging up the factory screen ?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

RBsingl

Active member

Equipment
Kubota F 2690 72" rear discharge deck, Deere 955
Jul 1, 2022
194
164
43
Central IL
troverman, I somewhat feel your pain even though I have never had AC in a tractor.

I bought my Deere 955 compact for mowing, loader, and snow removal back in 1995 and my only real annoyance with it over the years are the stupid radiator screens. In order to remove them with the placement of the air intake hose, Deere designed the screen in two pieces with a mating joint to lock them together. So you lift the main screen out and then slide the smaller screen under the air intake hose and then it lifts out. Taking them out is easy but putting them back in requires making sure you line the joint up perfectly after the little screen is back in position while simultaneously making sure the other side of the second screen properly enters its guide or you will ram the screen into the radiator fins. Sliding out a one piece screen from the side would have been a much better design.

With the awkward and tight placement, it is also easy to have what the screen caught falling off in the radiator compartment when you are trying to remove it so a simple quick mid-work screen cleaning turns into a blow it out with the air hose operation.

I have no idea how the condenser is laid out in your MX6000 but don't overlook the power and usefulness of high strength rare earth magnets when mounting a redesigned screen. I have used them for several applications where I needed something to be held in place solidly but also easily removable when needed. I have a fireplace with forced air circulation around the fire box which puts out a lot of heat, but even with the damper closed there is sometimes a bit of cold air coming out when the fireplace isn't in use with the incredibly strong rural IL winter wind. I made a leather front for the fireplace with some foam weather strip behind the leather with rare earth magnets embedded in the weather stripping and it completely blocks any drafts but pulls off quickly when I want to use the fireplace.

Rodger
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
Thanks for the replies. The magnet idea is something I hadn't thought of and a good solution. Sounds like Kubota isn't the only one with dumb designs.

Right now I'm very angry with Kubota. I mowed for 4 hours yesterday to finish a job. I brought a soft nylon bristle round thin brush to try and clean the condenser. It won't clean and the cores are just packed up. I don't have access to air or water on site. It wasn't particularly hot yesterday (around 80F with some humidity) but the sun was out. I'm in the greenhouse sweating with the "A/C" on full blast, just blowing warm air. The MX makes a lot of heat from underneath, probably the HST transmission and PTO at wide open throttle on hills all day. It was cooler outside, but opening the rear window while flail mowing is a bad idea. I'd open the door briefly to cool off at intervals, but it flops around and I didn't want to break it.

I have about 2 more hours of mowing at this site. On my next trip I intend to bring a pancake compressor, a blow nozzle, and my little Honda EU2200 generator as there is no power or water at this site. Hopefully that will clean the cores. I'm surprised the engine is not overheating since the condenser is ahead of the radiator and hydraulic cooler; it must be pulling some air through.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

RBsingl

Active member

Equipment
Kubota F 2690 72" rear discharge deck, Deere 955
Jul 1, 2022
194
164
43
Central IL
That doesn't sound like fun :(

So if I understand correctly, the cooling stack is set up with the condenser at the front (common practice since the AC condenser along with the intercooler for forced induction engines need the coolest air) with its own cooling screen and then the radiator screen is between the condenser and radiator??? Does it have two screens when AC is added with the ineffective one ahead of the condenser?

Probably additional air can come in from the side between the condenser and radiator/hydraulic layers of the cooling stack but I can see where a setup like this without an effective condenser screen would cause major issues. I have seen the township using those with their roadside mowing setups.

If this job is creating far more "chaff" than typical, maybe check whether a temporary finer screen around the hood/front intake grill would make a good easy to clean solution to the problem. Taking a compressor and generator along is a hassle, depending upon how often and much air is needed maybe one of the cheap HF air storage tanks would work as a simpler portable source of cleaning air.

Rodger
 

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
Yes, there is a flimsy flexible screen not of full width which hangs in front of the condenser about an inch ahead of it, allowing chaff to be sucked in past it on the sides or around it quite easily. Behind the condenser is the hydraulic fluid cooler. Above that (and the condenser) is the fuel cooler. Behind all of that is the engine radiator, which has its own good quality metal stiff screen which is tight to the radiator on metal slides.
The attached photo isn't a great angle, but you can see the basic setup. This tractor is turbocharged but there is no intercooler.
IMG_9733.JPG
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

RBsingl

Active member

Equipment
Kubota F 2690 72" rear discharge deck, Deere 955
Jul 1, 2022
194
164
43
Central IL
Thanks for the detailed and labeled photo, I pictured it as being like this but the photo makes it clear. The problems with that setup are pretty obvious.

One place the auto makers have improved production efficiency and product quality is standardizing as much as possible for a platform regardless of options. A single filter screen in front of the entire cooling stack, regardless of other application specific additional coolers, would make good engineering sense.

By profession, I was a marketing prof before retirement but I spent a lot of time doing consulting work in risk and quality management and I got to meet a lot of interesting engineers during that time. One of my favorite quality redesign stories was from an engineer at a military communications/avionics provider. They produced a Jeep mounted medium power communications setup used during the Korean and Vietnam wars and it was designed to be weather resistant in use and waterproof when not in use. The transmitter needed a lot of cooling air to keep it within temperature limits and operating one can be simulated by sitting between two screaming shop vacs. To prevent overheating of the high power tubes inside, which have integrated finned radiators that are forced air cooled, a panel mounted filter kept the air and tube fins clean. They ran into a failure issue and it came from the radio operators reversing instead of cleaning the filter (probably done quickly when they weren't ready for inspection). The company engineers came up with multiple complex solutions using sensors and secondary filters to prevent the failure but a "lowly" company technician came up with the proper solution which was simply to slightly redesign the filter and mount so that it couldn't be reversed.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
Here's a pic of my previous tractor, an L4060. Although the hydraulic and fuel coolers are set in front of the condenser, in this arrangement you can see the much nicer screen (metal, tight fit) that just pulls up vertically. The radiator also had its own screen, although it was more of a pain to pull out than the MX6000 screen. The big difference is the 4060 has the air cleaner on top of the motor vs ahead of the motor as on the MX.
IMG_6220.jpeg
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

GreensvilleJay

Well-known member

Equipment
BX23-S
Apr 2, 2019
4,912
1,628
113
Greensville,Ontario,Canada
LOVE the idea of magnets !
HATE the 'engineering' of BOTH of those tractors!!
Just look at all the 'stuff' blocking easy air flow/cooling....overflow tank,battery, air filter,electrical boxes, and horn ?? There's maybe 20-30% 'free flow' blockage and probably 'hot spots' as well.

For your current cleaning problem..maybe take an air 'pig' with you and a long tipped air nozzle to blow the chaff/dust out ? I do this on the forklift as it's easy,even when engine is kinda hot.
I don't know if one of those 12V air compressors would have enough pressure to blast away the chaff.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

woodman55

Active member

Equipment
L6060HSTC, RTV 1100
May 15, 2022
250
135
43
canada
Thanks for the replies. The magnet idea is something I hadn't thought of and a good solution. Sounds like Kubota isn't the only one with dumb designs.

Right now I'm very angry with Kubota. I mowed for 4 hours yesterday to finish a job. I brought a soft nylon bristle round thin brush to try and clean the condenser. It won't clean and the cores are just packed up. I don't have access to air or water on site. It wasn't particularly hot yesterday (around 80F with some humidity) but the sun was out. I'm in the greenhouse sweating with the "A/C" on full blast, just blowing warm air. The MX makes a lot of heat from underneath, probably the HST transmission and PTO at wide open throttle on hills all day. It was cooler outside, but opening the rear window while flail mowing is a bad idea. I'd open the door briefly to cool off at intervals, but it flops around and I didn't want to break it.

I have about 2 more hours of mowing at this site. On my next trip I intend to bring a pancake compressor, a blow nozzle, and my little Honda EU2200 generator as there is no power or water at this site. Hopefully that will clean the cores. I'm surprised the engine is not overheating since the condenser is ahead of the radiator and hydraulic cooler; it must be pulling some air through.
Another option would be a cordless blower. The smaller of the two that Milwaukee makes I think would a good fit.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

ve9aa

Well-known member

Equipment
tg1860, bx2380
Apr 11, 2021
466
256
63
NB, Canada
I can't solve your problem however, if it were ME, I'd try to determine where "most" of the chaff was coming from (what angle/where is it entering?) and either add more filtration or block it off or divert it entirely.

Case in point, when I mow in dandelion season on my TG1860 the rad screen and screen by my knees get plugged very quickly with those fluffy flying seeds, so I duct tape a pc of a bed sheet here and there. Still passes air, but the dandelion seeds don;t "stick" and 95% of them fall right back off. Little 3 cyl diesel does not overheat. If I let it get plugged up with dandelions, overheats quickly. So I know my sheets are passing enough air.

I don't have to stop every few minutes and clean filters and screens.

You may even be able to add small pcs of aluminum or heck, even "Kr@zy Karpet" plastic as diverters or blockages if you determine most of the cr@p was entering at one location maybe where your poorly designed screens are letting it build up.

Sux, but sometimes owners need to come up with solutions...or partial solutions.

Good luck- I wish you well in your creativity.
 

woodman55

Active member

Equipment
L6060HSTC, RTV 1100
May 15, 2022
250
135
43
canada
So I spent a few hours on a hot day last week out in a tall field just running a flail mower. Grass was pushing up to nearly the top of the hood. Mine is an MX 6000 cab model. After about an hour, the AC started to get warm. After 75 minutes, the temp gauge climbed. I shut down to clean the screens, not unusual. The main radiator screen is good. It rides on a track, is all metal, covers the whole radiator, and slides easily out the side. The AC condenser screen is the biggest afterthought garbage design I’ve seen. I saw it and had to recheck the side of the tractor to see if it said Kubota instead of a Korean or Indian manufacturer. It literally is a floppy home-style window screen. It is about 2” short on either side of the condenser. It also does not sit right up to the condenser, but is forward of it. The screen “mounts” via two grommets hanging on hooks. You might as well not even have a screen here. The whole HVAC system is basically identical to the Grand L 60 series, which has a nice full width easy to remove steel screen. The big difference is that the MX has a longer nose than the L60 and has the air cleaner above the battery ahead of the radiator instead of above the engine like the l60 series. Instead of spending a few moments engineering a quality screen and easy method to remove it,
Kubota took the cheap and worthless way out. I’m truly disgusted. The condenser is totally plugged and I really couldn’t get cold air the rest of the time mowing.
I agree, for the most part Kubota builds good stuff, but some of their designs (their lastest grill guard) are next to worthless.
 

troverman

Well-known member

Equipment
MX6000 HSTC; 2020 Kubota Z421KW-54 zero turn mower
Jun 9, 2015
1,097
198
63
NH
Again, woodman55 thanks for the screen measurements from my other thread. I’ll measure my condenser when I’m back on the job site and if it’s pretty close I’ll order the L60 screen. Having run the L4060 last year, I didn’t have this problem so I attribute it to the really lousy MX screen.

In fairness to Kubota, the MX was never designed to be a cab tractor. It was later modified to make it work with the L60 cab. That said, there’s no reason why they couldn’t have done a better condenser screen.

I planned on taking a small pancake compressor and my Honda generator to the site with a blow nozzle. I also have a powerful backpack blower, Husky / Redmax 580 BTS. That might work as well.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

BigG

Well-known member

Equipment
l2501, FEL, BB, Rotary cutter, rake,spreader, roller, etc. New Holland TL80 A
Sep 14, 2018
1,872
679
113
West Central,FL
I planned on taking a small pancake compressor and my Honda generator to the site with a blow nozzle. I also have a powerful backpack blower, Husky / Redmax 580 BTS. That might work as well.
[/QUOTE]

Check out the Honda running the compressor before you carry it to the job. I was going to do the same thing but my little Honda will not run the compressor.
 

mcmxi

Well-known member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
M6060HDC, MX6000HSTC, MX6000HST (sold), BX25TLB (sold), GL7000
Feb 9, 2021
2,016
1,977
113
NW Montana
I haven't had an issue with my MX6000HSTC yet running the flail, but I haven't had grass up over the hood either. That might change tomorrow when I cut my friend's fields. One of the aspects of rotary cutters and flail mowers that can cause unexpected issues is how they move clippings around. Some seem to be better at directing stuff away from the tractor, and obviously the size and nature of the clippings has an impact too.

I noticed the double screens on the MX6000HSTC vs. my previous MX6000HST and thought the extra screen was a good thing. The M6060 has a more advanced screen system of course. @troverman, I'll be following along as you get this figured out.

Oh yeah, I have an ECHO leaf blower that I use to clean out the engine compartment when mowing. So far it's worked well.