John Deere 332 - Best Diesel Lawn Garden Tractor?
John Deere 332 Overview
The John Deere 332 is considered in many respects the diesel equivalent of the magnificent John Deere 318 gas powered lawn tractor. Hence, you will see it commonly referred to as the "Diesel 318."
You will see from the specifications and information below that they are practically identical in several ways.
The 332 is a slightly larger model than the 316, which is basically the 318. It boasts the same engine as the 318 (16 HP, later produced with an 18 HP) but it comes without the power steering options as well as a few other basic aspects.
The 332 was brought in as a replacement model for the John Deere 330 lawn tractor. It used pretty much the exact same engine (a 16 Horse Power 658cc 3 cylinder diesel engine) but came with a few additional features:
- Hydrostatic power steering
- Dual hydraulics system
- Individual brakes for the left and right
It was marketed as an upgrade to the already popular 330, with features from the well-liked 318.
There were essentially three variants of the same base model: the John Deere 318 which operated on air-cooled gas; the 322, which ran on liquid-cooled gas; then finally, of course, the 332 (this model) that runs on a diesel engine.
John Deere 332 Specifications
Here's a quick overview of the overall specs of the John Deere 332. For more information please see the technical information manual, which you can source online, as well as the reviews and restoration project videos I've included below.
The model began production at the start of 1987, essentially the year after the 318 at the same Horicon factory, and stopped as of 1992. It was of course classed in the overall 300 series.
The engine was a 16HP Yanmar 658-cc 3-cylinder diesel engine with a rated RPM of 3635 and overall fuel capacity of 17 liters. The overall tractor weighed in at approximately 400 kilos (slightly heavier than the 318) and had a set wheelbase of 46". Like the 318, it boasts a range of attachments (that we will go into a bit more detail just below). It has the same power take-off mechanism as the 318 (electric clutch) and very similar hydraulics.
For more information, including about restorations, please visit tractordata.com.
John Deere 332 Review
With the 332 there was an option of either of two tillers: a 48" shaft drive (which needed the 2000 ROM rear PTO) as well as a 30" hydraulic tiller.
- 38-inch cutting width mower deck (two-blade)
- 46-inch cutting width mower deck (three-blade)
- 50-inch cutting width mower deck (three-blade)
All the mower decks are placed mid-mount.
- 46-inch snow blower (clearing width)
- 47-inch snow blower (clearing height at 23 inches)
The snow blowers are placed front mount.
Overall, the 322 was never quite as popular as the 318, and you will generally come across it a lot less frequently (at least when you are looking to buy one). However, like the 318, the 322 was incredibly well engineered; a lawn tractor that was built to last an age. That's why they are still popular even today.
If you are planning on making any sort of servicing attempt or overall repair to your John Deere 332 then we certainly recommend that you consult John Deere official literature and material before doing so, or contact them by email or over the phone.
Where to Find a John Deere 332 and Parts for Sale?
If you are interested in actually buying or selling your John Deere 332 (or parts), you have many options.
Big sites such as eBay and Craigslist are always a good place to start a search. However, look also at smaller niche sites and forums (such as Weekend Freedom Machines forum) that specialise in vintage lawn tractors. Sites such as tractorhouse.com are a great place to take a look to see if they are selling or potentially even buying.
Don't neglect the old-school offline route. Remember, the type of demographic to be selling parts for a 332, or the entire tractor, might not actually be online. So it is worth going to markets and dealerships that sell such tractors and see if they have anything that's available.
Since the model has been discontinued for over 15 years, parts are scarce, and will become increasingly scarce. The best start in finding certain parts is knowing exactly what you need first, then searching online. There are plenty of avenues through eBay and Craigslist as mentioned, but also Facebook is a very good avenue to go down; certain Facebook groups that specialize in these machines.
You can also look to certain John Deere and vintage lawn tractors forums and see if they have a certain section of the site that has a place to list and buy certain parts.
Of course, it is actually worth consulting John Deere themselves to see if they can put you in the right direction.
Operator's Manual, Parts Catalogs & Technical Manuals
If you are looking for a John Deere 332 manual or technical information, there are plenty of PDF versions online that you can go read and download.
If you visit John Deere's website directly, you will be able to find a host of different information along with a range of different specification sheets. If you are still struggling, email them directly and they should be able to provide you with any particular information that you might need.
Overall, the John Deere 332 is clearly a fantastic lawn and garden tractor, with reliability, vintage appeal, and the overall nostalgia of a hard working tractor.
Of course, the downside to getting such a tractor is that the parts are becoming rarer to find, and as such, it becomes more and more expensive to maintain.
But the overall value of a John Deere 332 keeps rising too. At this writing, I found a John Deere 332 for sale on eBay that is fetching around $4000. They clearly continue to hold their value incredibly well.
There are newer models that you should consider too. For instance, check out my review of the John Deere 425.
If you do have any questions with regards to the John Deere 332 Diesel Garden tractor, then, by all means, let us know in the comments below.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2019 Harry Sheen