The three primary belts found in a Craftsman mower are the drive belt, power clutch belt and arbor belt. Craftsman mowers come with these belts when bought from a Craftsman dealer. Over time, though, the belts wear down until they are not usable anymore. A mower's owner must know the belt's function and how long the belt should be for their models. Appropriate belt lengths depend on the size of the mower's deck and engine.
A drive belt is a belt that transmits driving power from the lawn mowers engine to movable parts throughout the mower. The two chief responsibilities driving belts is propelling the mower forward and sending power to the belts in the mower's deck. Craftsman mowers have primary and secondary drive belts. Both belts range between 42 to 50 inches long, depending on the mower's model. Craftsman's riding and push mowers use drive belts. A rear baffle covers the drive belt in Craftsman mowers. In order to replace old drive belts, temporarily remove the rear baffle and wrap the new belt around the gearcase pulley and belt adapter.
Power Clutch Belt
The power clutch belt is one of two belts that operate the deck of a Craftsman mower. Also known as the PTO belt (power takeoff belt), this pulley receives power from the driving belt and is located right below the deck's surface. Replacing old power clutch belts is easier than replacing worn drive or arbor belts due to the location of the power clutch. Depending on the mower's model, power clutch belts are 42 to 50 inches long. Power clutch belts are usually lighter than drive belts.
Similarly to power clutch or drive belts, arbor belt lengths range from 40 to 50 inches. The Craftsman's arbor belts rotate on two to three pulleys, depending on the model of the mower. The other belt in the mower's deck area is the arbor belt. The arbor belt rests below the power clutch belt and is responsible for operating the mower's blades. The power clutch belt sends power to the arbor belt. To replace an arbor belt, the lawnmower's owner must first remove the mower's pulley shields, upstop, arbor cover and the tension spring from the idler pulley.
Signs of Wear
After purchasing a Craftsman lawnmower, check your belts periodically for wear and tear. Turning the mower sideways is the most proficient way of inspecting the mower's belts. For riding mowers, lift the deck cover. Cracks and splits are signs that the mower's owner must replace the belts. Wear and tear primarily occurs from usage. Other signs of wear and tear are slippage while operating the mower and fraying. Old belts snap during operation if they are not replaced. When replacing any of the Craftsman's belts, unplug the spark plug before removing belts to avoid injury.