How to Change the PTO Belt on Your Riding Lawn Mower

Lawn mower deck belts can wear with ordinary use over time and they can cause greater damage to your machine if not replaced in a timely manner. This video will show you how to perform a mower deck belt replacement on a Cub Cadet riding mower.  Depending on your model, the instructions in this video may vary slightly.  Always be sure to check your operator's manual for detailed instructions.


Step 1: Prepare your riding mower for maintenance. Place your mower on a flat, level surface. Turn the mower off and make sure the engine is cool.  Remove the ignition key, disconnect the spark plug ignition wire, and engage the parking brake. This helps ensure the machine doesn't start accidentally and cause you or those around you harm.

Step 2: Set your mower’s deck height to the lowest setting

Step 3: Remove both belt covers. Use a 3/8” socket or wrench to remove the belt covers from the deck. Remove all 6 screws.

Step 4: Remove the belt from the spindle pulleys. Using a 9/16” socket or wrench pull the idler pulley arm forward to release the belt tension.

Step 5: Remove the belt from the idler pulleys and engine pulley. Using both a 9/16” socket and wrench loosen, but do not remove, the idler pulley bolts.

Step 6: Install the replacement belt. Place the belt in position as per the routing diagram.

Step 7: Route the belt around the engine pulley.

Step 8: Route the belt through the idler pulleys. Using both a 9/16” socket and wrench tighten both of the idler pulley bolts.

Step 9: Route the belt around the spindle pulleys. Use the 9/16” socket or wrench to release the tension and finish routing the belt.

Step 10: Reinstall both belt covers.

Step 11: Reconnect your spark plug wires.

Genuine Parts Logo Cub Cadet Genuine Parts

Always use genuine OEM replacement parts when servicing your equipment. Use our parts finder to locate and order any replacement parts you may need for maintenance. Refer to your owner's manual for additional maintenance information.