Over time, a lawn mower deck belt will experience wear and tear, no matter how much you take care of your lawn mower. However, depending on the quality of the material the belt is made of and sometimes the model, it is expected to last for a stipulated amount of time.
You should not have to change your belt every year or two; that is why you should know how long your lawn mower belt can last. This way, you get to know when it is due for a change and how to use it, so it lasts for as long as the manufacturers claim.
What Is Deck Belt?
The Inside of a lawn mower has a rubber belt called a mower deck belt that facilitates movement of the lawnmower’s moving parts. The lawn mower blades on your riding lawn mower are turned by the crankshaft connected to the deck belt. The deck belt holds the blades and the crankshaft together, causing the blades to move and cut grasses. It is quite an active part, I must say.
How Long Should A Mower Deck Belt Last?
The longevity of an item depends solely on maintenance. A lawn mower deck belt can last for about three to four years. It is not news that it can last more than that with proper care. On the other hand, if it is not appropriately used and not well taken care of, it will get worse sooner.
How Do I Know If My Mower Deck Belt Is Bad?
It is not magic to know when your mower deck belt is terrible. All you need is a little bit of attention and to watch out for a couple of signs. Here are those signs:
- If the belt has no ridges or bumps and looks shiny, look properly. It indicates the belt is worn and sliding inside the pulley’s grooves.
- The belt is too stretched that it slacks between the pulleys. In other words, it slips off the pulley. This causes the belt to lose power and run loosely, reducing its effectiveness.
- There are cracks or tears on the edges of the belt. This is most likely the last sign that happens before it eventually snaps.
- More than 1 inch of belt deflection suggests that the belt may be riding too close to the pulley, which may also cause the belt’s wear.
Apart from these physical signs on the belt, other signs could indicate that the belt needs to be replaced. You might hardly have the chance to look closely at your deck belt, but when you notice these signs in your lawn mower, you need to check your deck belt.
- The mower might not run up to its average speed and is no longer effective.
- When turned on, the mower vibrates a lot
- The mower does not start or run without stuttering
- The mower does not move until the belt gets hot or you can perceive a burning smell
When Should I Replace My Mower Belt?
You do not have to wait till your mower deck belt is completely spoilt or torn to have it replaced. There are some early signs to look out for to prevent unexpected accidents that could happen when the belt cuts when in use. The belt should be changed before it breaks to ensure no interruptions when mowing.
If you are the type that likes to change the belt even without seeing signs of it breaking, you should wait for about four years before replacing it. Replacing an old deck belt earlier than that might be worth it but will be unnecessary costs.
And for those that prefer waiting for signs, ensure you pay attention to your lawn mower. With that and the knowledge of the signs discussed earlier, you know when it is acting out of the ordinary and then a replacement.
Related Read: Do Lawn Mowers Have Batteries?
Why Does My Lawn Mower Deck Belt Keep Breaking?
If you have to change your lawn mower deck belt because it keeps breaking, some things could be wrong.
- Excess grass clippings or debris build-up
The effects of excess grass clippings and grass debris on a lawn mower are numerous and severe. Hence the need to constantly clean the mower after use and store it correctly.
- The pulley has sharp edges
Sharp edges on the pulley leave incision marks on the belt when the blades are engaged. And worth every turn is a cut. If this is not checked and the edges are not evened out fast, the cut will continue, and the belt will break.
- The spring is weak
The tensioner spring is responsible for how tight the belt is. If the spring gets weak, it will cause the belt to slip. Continuous slip-offs expose the belt to break, which then causes it to break quickly.
- Spoilt pulley bearings
This problem might require removing your deck belt to check, but it’s worth it. If the pulley bearing is loose, that is the problem. The loose pulley causes friction on the belt, causing the belt to have tears which eventually causes it to break.
Poor belt quality, I am sorry, but you might just be getting poor-quality belts. This mistake is nothing to be ashamed of; we all have done that at one point in our lawn mower use. All deck belts would not be the same; if they were, we wouldn’t be having deck belt problems such as this.
Anyways, when you are looking to get a deck belt, go for an OEM belt. You can also check out Kevlar belts. A little research and questions will also help make the right pick. Like my friend will always say, they are that cheap for a reason.
Related Read: Husqvarna Lawn Mower Keep Shutting Off
How to Make Deck Belt Last Long?
There is nothing special you have to do to make your mower deck belt last long if not to care for it.
- Clean the lawn mower after every use
- Do routine checks on the lawn mower to ensure every part is clean.
- The pulley bearings should be checked quite often.
- Over time the pulley experiences wear and tear. This applies to the edges of the pulley. Check it for sharp edges and smoothen them out.
- When purchasing a deck belt, make sure you do your research and get a high-quality belt.
Mower deck belt replacement is a common repair that most people can do on their own. It’s important to know how long your mower deck belt should last so you can plan for the repair. There are several factors that affect how long a mower deck belt will last.
Also, Do not be deceived by the manufacturers’ claim on the lifespan of a lawn mower deck belt. If you do not take care of the belt and even the lawn mower, you will most likely replace it now and then. We hope this information helps you keep your lawn looking great all season long.