Is replacing Troy-Bilt, Blade's Drive Belt a reasonable DIY job?

loger_gwAugust 23, 2011

Is replacing a Troy-Bilt, Model #13at609g766, Serial #1b034h20502, Blade's Drive Belt a reasonable DIY job?

1. I have not replaced one or know the tricks of the trade but feel mechanics is mechanics.

2. I feel it might be time consuming due to having to removing the deck or etc if needed.

3. What are your opinions of replacing the belt for equivalent donated grass cutting?

4. If your opinions are favorable, do you have any tips or links to share? loger

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No need to remove the deck; fairly simple installation. Look at page 21 in your owner's manual for step-by-step instructions and a diagram. If you don't have a manual, click on the link to get it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Troy Bilt owner's manual

    Bookmark   August 24, 2011 at 10:52AM
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Thanks zavert! Your comments and the video indicates my friend should be able to replace the belt. Otherwise, I'll take a look at it to verify he can do the job and if needed help with the task. I have a theory that most of my friends respect. " I w/n do a job that you can do, not even for money". All of us need to do as much as we can for ourselves vs depending on others. Enough Said And thanks Again!! loger

    Bookmark   August 24, 2011 at 1:37PM
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Zavert, My friend reported that he got the belt replaced but there was not enough tension to drive the blades. I feel it's an idler adjustment needed w/o seeing the mower or manual. Can you or anyone address this or refer me to info that will? It was good to hear he replaced the belt. I feel a belt tensioner would have been noticed or mentioned in the manual. Where did I miss it in the downloaded manual? I actually saw a video that I need to try to get back to but do not remember and idler adjustment mentioned. loger

    Bookmark   September 18, 2011 at 9:12PM
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Loger, My guess would be that 1) the belt is not properly installed, particularly around the idlers, or 2) the idler spring is not connected, or 3) the wrong belt has been installed - replacement belts should be purchased by manufacturer's actual stock number, and not by measuring the old stretched belt taken off the machine. I don't have access to a Troy tractor to look at, but there is probably not a way to adjust the idler, as the tension of the spring pulls it into position. In looking at the manual (link in earlier message), belt routing looks pretty straight forward, but folks sometimes go the wrong way around idlers, and that is my first suspect.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2011 at 12:27PM
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Thanks Javert! I understand all of your points well:

1. My friend does not have a background in mechanics and could easily be off track.

2. He assured me that he has an OEM belt by the # per his manual.

3. My concern is seeing what he has done related to his pics/manual vs a visit if possible.

4. I'm anxious to see there is not a tension adj vs just springs and ck belt's installation.

5. He's about 20 mi away, will invite him over when my yard needs cutting if needed. LOL!


    Bookmark   September 19, 2011 at 2:55PM
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Loger, I might be missing (or misunderstanding) something here. I hope I don't offend anyone, but both of you DO understand that the idler wheel IS the belt tensioner, do you not? The back side of the belt rides against the idler wheel, and the spring pulls the wheel into the belt to tighten it against the pulleys. Click on the link marked "Troy Bilt owner's manual" in my first post, and go to the section on changing the deck belt. There are two illustrations. See the instruction to use a ratchet in the idler bracket and rotate it counterclockwise to relieve tension on the belt (in order to remove the old belt.) When installing the new belt, you have to use the ratchet to rotate the idler wheel toward the front of the tractor in order to stretch the new belt around it. When you release it, the idler will snap toward the rear of the tractor, and as it does so it will push against the BACK of the belt to tighten the belt against the pulleys. This method is commonly used on mower decks. I have five riding lawn mowers/lawn tractors in four different brands, and all of them employ this method of tensioning the deck belt. The most common mistake folks make in installing deck belts is to fail to realize that the BACK of the belt is what should be in contact with the idler wheel, the inside, or V-shaped part of the belt rides in the pulleys that turn the blades.

Note that there are two idler wheels, but only the one toward the left side of the deck is a tensioner - i.e. on a movable bracket. The idler on the right merely changes the direction of the belt's travel.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2011 at 11:26PM
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Jvert, Thanks for the follow-up! I understand the design of routing, purpose of idlers with only spring loaded tension as with my automotive serpentine belts. loger

    Bookmark   September 19, 2011 at 11:47PM
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