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How to Adjust the Drive Belt on a Craftsman Lawn Tractor

Keeping your Craftsman lawn tractor maintained is part of your agreement for warranty coverage. This includes checking the tires, sharpening the blades, and lubricating the tractor and drive belts. The motion drive belt is connected to the transaxle pulley at the rear of the Craftsman lawn tractor. Belts may become loose from use or improper placement. But Craftsman lawn tractors do not have manual adjusters for motion drive belts, so the belts need to be replaced when they become loose.

Removing the Motion Drive Belt

Park the lower on an even, level surface such as a driveway or in a garage. Turn the engine off and remove the key. Disengage the blades and raise the mower deck to its highest level. Engage the parking break.

Remove the mower deck. Use pliers to remove all retaining springs (cotter pins) that connect the mower deck to the bottom of the lawn tractor. There are cotter pins located at the clutch to connect it to the clutch rod, the anti-sway bar to the chassis bracket, the front links at the front of the mower deck and at the suspension arms (attached to the lever that lowers and raises the mower deck).

Remove the upper belt keeper from the engine pulley using a screwdriver. This will relax the tension on the belt and make removal easier.

Slide the belt off the stationary and clutch idlers. Pull the slack part of the belt back towards the transaxle pulley located in the rear of the lawn tractor

Push the belt keepers on the transaxle pulley down and slide the belt up. This will remove the belt from the transaxle pulley. Pull the drive belt to the front of the lawn tractor and slide the belt down off the engine pulley.

Installing a New Motion Drive Belt

Slide the belt up and around the engine pulley. Push the belt keepers on the transaxle pulley down and slide the belt over the transaxle pulley.

Pull the slack from the back of the tractor (transaxle pulley) and slide the belt on to the stationary and clutch idlers. This will increase the tension in the belt and hold it in place.

Secure the drive belt by reinstalling the upper belt keeper to the engine pulley. Check the drive belt to make sure that there is no slack in the belt. Pushing on the belt with your hand should not move it.

Reinstall the mower deck. Align the mower deck so that the clutch should lines up with the clutch rod, the anti-sway bar lines up with the chassis bracket, front links line up and suspension arms are aligned with the deck brackets. Insert retainer springs to secure the mower deck.

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