My Kubota Digger Won't Start

Kubota digger won't start

My Kubota digger won't start, and how to troubleshoot?

If your Kubota digger doesn’t start, there are a few key things you can check to troubleshoot the problem.

  • Key: Make sure that you have the correct chipped key matched to the digger. 
  • Diesel: It’s obvious, but make sure you have enough diesel in the tank.
  • Pre-Heating: Turn the key on to the first position, and the pre-heating light will illuminate, allowing for up to sixty seconds of pre-heating in cold weather. 
  • Seat Belt: Sit on the digger and ensure your seat belt is securely fastened. Most diggers are fitted with a green flashing light to ensure that the operator has their seatbelt fastened at all times. Seatbelt issues are the most common fault when your digger doesn’t start.
  • Control Lever: Ensure the red control lockout lever is up (locking), disengaging all leavers and inputs. When the safety lever is in the locking position, the digger, arm, and slew will not move, preventing accidents caused by mis operation. The digger engine will not start or turn over while the leaver is in the down position.
  • Emergency Stop Button: Check that the emergency stop button is in the up position. The emergency stop button, also known as a kill switch, is situated on your right on the control panel, close to your hip. Please note that the digger engine will turn over with the emergency stop button in the down position but won’t start.
  • Battery Isolator Switch (battery cut-off switch) must be in the 12 o’clock position (vertical) “ON” position to start. If the isolator switch is in the 10 o’clock position, the switch is “OFF”, and the digger won’t start. An indicator that the isolator switch is off is when you have no electrically powered functions. (e.g. horn, fuel fill level, dashboard display, etc., don’t work.)
  • Battery: Check the battery to ensure it has enough charge and functions correctly.
  • Fuel Filter: Check the filter to ensure it is clean and not clogged. A clogged fuel filter can prevent fuel from reaching the engine, causing it not to start.
  • Air Filter: A dirty or clogged air filter can restrict the airflow to the engine, preventing it from starting. Check the air filter to ensure it is clean and not blocked. Always blow the air filter from the inside out to avoid contamination dirt, or replace the filter with a new part.
  • Fuses: Open the fuse box and check the fuses for any blown fuses, and replace them. If your digger is not starting, it could be due to a fuse that controls an essential function, such as the fuel pump, being the cause of the issue.


Download the Operators Manual:

For additional how-to and troubleshooting guides, consult or download the Kubota KX016-4 operators manual.

We highlighted “My Kubota digger won’t start, and how to troubleshoot” the mini digger, as it is a popular machine among plant hirers. The KX series machines are known for their versatility and efficiency, making them well-suited to a wide range of construction and landscaping tasks. They are also relatively easy to operate and maintain, which can be helpful for hirers who need to get their job done quickly and efficiently.

My Kubota digger Won't Start.

If none of the above work, ensure that the diesel is not contaminated, flush the water traps and check the engine and hydraulic oil levels. Next, check that the battery is fully charged and the battery acid levels. It’s also a good idea to clean the air filter by blowing it out with compressed air.

If warning lights appear on the dashboard, this could indicate a more serious issue. In this case, it may be best to call your plant hire professional or engineer for further assistance.

We have additional resources to help you with your daily mini-digger checklist and inspection.