When the self-propulsion feature in your Craftsman mower malfunctions, the previously manageable job of mowing the yard suddenly becomes more difficult. Wheels that skip and slip indicate an underlying problem with the drive system that governs the wheels. While not all repairs can be created by the typical mower operator, most of the causes of sliding wheels are those that you can fix yourself in your home.
On Craftsman versions, the drive wheels may be either the front or rear set of wheels, based on the model of the device. A belt that winds about a drive pulley and attaches to the gear box or transmission drives the self-propelled wheels. When the operator of the mower engages the operator presence control bar and also pushes the drive control lever forward until it clicks, the attached cable pulls tight and applies pressure to the pulley system that permits the self-propelled wheels to rotate. A error is possible at any point of the process.
Drive wheels that skip or slip frequently indicate a problem with the pulley or belt that controls them. Examine the belt to determine whether it’s worn and requires replacing. Nicks, tears or places along the belt that are worn smooth may cause the wheels to skip when the belt can not maintain a firm grip on the disk. Replace the belt using a new one that is recommended by the manufacturer. Check the drive pulley to make sure it is able to turn freely and isn’t broken or damaged. If the mower has been exposed to the weather or is an older model, it’s possible that grime or rust has locked the pulley to position and keeps it from spinning.
Skipping wheels may signal a problem with the Craftsman mower’s transmission, especially when the drive belt and pulley check out fine. A deficiency of transmission fluid can cause malfunctions in the transmission, or worn gears can stick and slip, causing the self-propelled wheels to react improperly. Regrettably, adding fluid to the transmission yourself isn’t an option since the transmission is filled with fluid in the factory and sealed tight. Any sort of transmission work has to be done by a mechanic certified to work on the Craftsman mower to prevent terminating the warranty.
Wacky Wheel Assemblies
Since the wheel assembly is a essential part of the self-propulsion system of the Craftsman mower, a problem with the wheel assembly gears may causing skipping wheels. When the gears are worn, then they might refuse to engage with the transmission or might engage on a hit or miss basis, causing the skipping. While it might sound easy to replace the wheel assembly gear, that isn’t how it works. To replace the gear, you must replace the entire wheel assembly that’s offered as one contiguous unit.
Since the bottom of the mower is constantly bombarded with dirt and grass clippings during mowing, a belt that is skipping might be caused by nothing more significant than detritus caught from the drive wheel area. To clear the debris, remove the hubcaps, cotter pins and washers that secure the drive wheels and remove the wheels in the adjusters. Clean all debris in the area, like the tooth of the drive wheel gears, the pinion and the dust cover. After cleaning, reinstall the wheels and washers onto the adjusters and secure them using the cotter pins.