Belts are easy to forget about, but as the season wears on, it becomes more likely that a stretched or broken belt will keep your mower’s deck from working. Here’s what you need to know to replace the belts on your Cub Cadet, whether you have a wide-area walk-behind, a riding mower or a ZTR.
While it may be possible to change a belt without separating the deck from the mower, it’s not worth saving a couple minutes on a belt replacement if it means the risk of having the mower fall on you. Cub Cadet designs their decks to be easy to remove, so there’s no reason to tilt a riding mower or ZTR to access the belt.
It’s easy to accidentally touch the engine or muffler when working around the engine pulley, so it’s a good idea to let the mower cool for at least a half hour before replacing the belt. Before you start working on the mower, unhook the wires from the spark plugs to prevent an accidental start.
Removing the Deck on a Riding Mower
1.Move the deck height lever to the lowest position.
2. There are J hooks on the left and right sides of the deck that need to be separated from the mower. To do this, simply pull them outward.
3. Move the deck height lever to the highest position.
4. Remove the cotter pin from the stabilizer rod and slide the bar out of the hanger bracket.
5. Remove the screw holding the belt keeper around the engine pulley. Remove the keeper.
6. Slide the belt off of the PTO pulley.
7. Remove the bow tie clip and release the PTO cable from the hanger bracket. Remove the tension spring from the idler arm.
8. Turn the front wheels to left. You should be able to slide the deck out from the right side of the mower.
Changing a Riding Mower Deck Belt
After the deck has been removed from the mower, do the following:
1. Remove the belt cover from the outer pulleys.
2. Unhook the idler spring, then unscrew the nut and bolt that hold the idler pulley to the belt keeper.
3. Turn the square hole in the right idler bracket with a 3/8 drive ratchet to separate the pulleys. Remove the left pulley.
4. Replace the belt.
5. Follow the previous steps in reverse order to reassemble the deck.
Removing the Deck from a ZTR
1. Remove the mower deck belt-keeper rod. Slide the deck belt off of the engine pulley.
2. Set the deck to the highest cutting position. Slide a set of wood blocks underneath the deck, then set the mower deck to the lowest height to let it rest on these blocks.
3. Slide out the J-hooks on the left and right sides of the deck to release it. Slide out the blocks, then take the pin out of the front deck hanger rod.
4. Turn the front wheels to left. You should be able to slide the deck out from the right side of the mower.
Changing the Deck Belt on a ZTR
Once the deck has been separated from the mower, do the following:
1. Using a ratchet, remove the deck belt covers and the nuts and bolts that hold the idler pulley to the belt keeper.
2. Pull off the left idler pulley and remove the old belt. Loop the new mower deck belt around both pulleys.
3. Reassemble the mower by following the previous instructions in reverse order.
Changing the Belt on a Wide Area Walk-Behind Mower
1. Tip the mower so that the engine air filter is facing up.
2. Use Cub Cadet’s Universal Blade Removal Tool to take off the mower blade.
3. Remove the screws that secure the engine baffle and drive belt cover to the deck. Remove the baffle and cover.
4. Remove the belt from the blade adapter and drive pulley, then slide the adapter off of the crankshaft.
5. Starting at the rear of the mower, slide the belt off of the transmission pulley.
6. Push the deck baffle aside and slide the belt off of the engine pulley.
7. Slide the new belt in between the deck and the baffle. Wrap the belt around the transmission pulley and then the engine pulley.
8. Reassemble the mower following steps 1-6 in reverse order. When installing the blade, tighten the blade bolt to the torque specified in the owner’s manual.
Where to Get a New Belt for Your Cub Cadet
www.cubparts.com is a certified dealer for Cub Cadet, so we carry OEM belts that will fit your mower correctly and provide factory reliability. Our site’s search engine lets you quickly identify the right part thanks to built-in factory diagrams and descriptions. We ship across the U.S. and Canada.