5 Most Common Problems with Massey Ferguson 491

Massey Ferguson tractors are known as some of the most popular and reliable in the world. The MF491 models, manufactured between 2004 and 2006, have improved productivity, operator comfort, and durability to take on a wide variety of tasks in a wide range of environments.

The MF 491 does, however, have its share of issues. Common issues with this Kubota model include an extremely noisy engine, stiff steering, issues with the hitch system, electrical difficulties, and transmission failures.

Read this article carefully so that you understand the common issues and how they are resolved when using this particular Massey model. However, let’s begin with a quick review of the summary table.

Problems and Solutions at a Glance:

Problems with MF 491:Solutions:
Abnormal Engine Noise Or KnockingCheck oil level and add oil as required
Difficulty Shifting GearsInstall new shift linkage
3-Point Hitch Won’t Lift Or Lifts SlowlyRepair or replace hydraulic fluid pump
Front Wheels Wander To Left Or RightChange or repair steering control valve if required
Battery Cannot Be ChargedTighten or service cable connections.

5 Common Problems with MF 491 and Their Possible Solutions:

You might have troubles with MF 491 for a variety of different reasons. Here are some of the causes for it, as well as potential solutions to the problems.

1. Abnormal Engine Noise Or Knocking

When temperatures drop this low, MF 491 has a hard time keeping its engines functioning. It will turn on, but it will sputter and eventually start spitting out black smoke. It generates an abnormal engine noise or knocking.

Other common MF491 engine issues include: engine difficulty or refusal to start; engine stalls during operation; engine starts but then stalls; engine overheats; engine lacks power; engine stops when idling; and low oil pressure.

The Fix:

These difficulties will occur if the engine is not warmed up before starting. Warm up engine as necessary. It is possible that the engine oil level is low. Check oil level and add oil as necessary.

Wrong adjustment of the fuel injection pump timing produces excessive sound. Adjust the pump as necessary.

Piston wear or scoring is a key cause of unusual sound. Install new pistons.

If the connecting rod is misaligned or faulty, connecting rod has to be replaced or adjusted.

2. Difficulty Shifting Gears

A stuck or jammed gear is a typical issue with Massey Ferguson 491 tractors.

This problem can be very frustrating. Because, a tractor is useless if it is stuck in gear and unable to move. 

This issue can be caused by a clutch that is worn out or not set properly, connection for shifting gears that is worn or rusted, as well as shift forks that are worn out or bent.

The Fix:

It is recommended that a new shift linkage be installed in place of the rusty or old one now in use.

 The clutch that is worn out or has not been changed should be adjusted or replaced. Check to see whether any of the shift forks are crooked or worn.

Replace the worn-out shift forks with new ones.

The worn gear changing mechanism has to be repaired or replaced, depending on the circumstances.

3. 3-Point Hitch Won’t Lift Or Lifts Slowly

Most often encountered hydraulic problems on the MF 491 involve the hitch system.

The 3-Point Hitch on the tractor does not remain up and drifts or falls down; it will not rise at all. The tractor hitch stays up and won’t go down. The Tractor 3-Point Hitch is too sluggish – these are the few issues with MF491.

There are a few common causes of a tractor’s 3-point hitch not working: insufficient fluid, a clogged hydraulic filter, or tainted hydraulic fluid.

The Fix:

  • Whenever a 3-point hitch is not functioning properly, the hydraulics are normally checked first.
  • If the hydraulic pump is faulty, Repair or replace hydraulic fluid pump.
  • Damaged main relief valve should be installed with a new relief valve.
  • Faulty hydraulic spool valve should be repaired or changed if needed.
  • Look for any broken hydraulic cylinder, install a new hydraulic cylinder or repair it.
  • If there is insufficient hydraulic fluid. Fill the system to proper hydraulic fluid level. 
  • If there is clogged hydraulic oil filter element, service the hydraulic filter or change if required.
  • Reduce hitch load.

4. Front Wheels Wander To Left Or Right

The front wheel of the MF 491 shakes and moves either to the left or the right. The steering mechanism presents a number of issues. Other steering system issues, such as excessive steering wheel free play and heavy steering, are encountered by a significant number of MF491 users.

This type of issue can be brought on by a broad variety of mechanical flaws, such as components that have been worn or corroded over time.

The Fix:

If the power steering control valve is broken or worn, it has to be replaced or fixed. Fix the broken hydraulic steering cylinder. Toe-in wheel must be adjusted. Any worn or loose steering linkage has to be fixed or replaced.

Front wheel bearings that have been improperly set or are damaged must be adjusted properly or replaced. Make sure the tire pressure right.

5. Battery Cannot Be Charged

This tractor suffers from a wide variety of electrical problems.  Electrical issues include the starter which either spins slowly or will not start, and there are problems with charging the battery.

The battery of this tractor is unable to be charged, which causes the electrical system to have problems and makes the tractor difficult to start.

A problem with the battery charging might be caused by a flaw in the charging mechanism of the tractor or by an issue with the battery itself.

The Fix:

Connectors between wires must be tightened. If they are rusty or loose, replace them.

Adjust or repair loose cables. Connectors at the battery terminals maybe broken. Switch out the plugs at the terminals. Put in a new battery if the existing one is damaged.

The tractor belt is either too loose or has been damaged. Belt needs to be replaced or the tension adjusted.

What Majority of the Users Feel?

When deciding which tractor to buy, it’s crucial to read reviews and feedback from other customers. Moreover, this gives you a sense of the potential issues you may encounter with your purchase.

This section will offer you a clear idea of what the majority of people think about MF491.

One user remarked that what he enjoyed most about the 400 series (MF 491) Massey Ferguson tractors is that they come standard with aux hydraulics, whereas no other brand does.

Another customer stated that he purchased a brand-new 491 in 2005. Overall, it’s been a reliable tractor with very occasional issues. Early on, the dealer had to come out and patch a few leaks. There was just one instance of clutch cable failure before it had to be replaced.

People have diverse experiences with their MF491, but the majority are pleased with it, apart from the number of issues it has.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many horsepower is a Massey Ferguson 491?

89 hp 66.4 kW.

How much does a Massey Ferguson 491 weight?

6812 to 8025 pounds.

What engine is in a MF 491?

Perkins 4.4L 4-cyl diesel.

Final Thoughts

I’ve talked about all of the most common problems that MF 491 users run into. If any of these problems are bothering you, you should do what I say to fix it.

I strongly suggest that you perform routine maintenance on your trailer in order to avoid future issues.

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