Over time, the belts on a riding lawn mower will weaken and fray. Eventually, the belt will break and need to be replaced before you can continue to cut the grass. Replacing the belt involves removing the mower deck from under the lawn tractor so you can gain access to the belt. Here is how you can remove the mower from a John Deere 38' lawn tractor.

Work on a Flat Concrete Surface

You are going to need to slide the deck out from under the lawn tractor. This is done much easier on a flat concrete surface than it is on a grass surface where the lawn might be uneven and the wheels of the deck can dig into the dirt – which makes pulling the deck out from under the tractor much harder.

Shut Off Tractor and Mower

For your safety, make sure the tractor is turned off and the key removed before you start working on the mower.

Height Control Knob

Place the height control knob into the "blank" position (the other positions will show the height levels in inches that you can set the blade for grass cutting). The "blank" position disengages the blades from the drive shaft.

Placement of Lift Lever

Push the lift lever all the way into its forward position. The deck will drop to the ground to relieve the tension on the springs that hold the mower in place when it is in its highest (transport) position.

Disengage Drive Belt Tension Lever

The drive belt tension lever slips into a bracket on top of the mower deck. You will need to take the lever out of the bracket to release the tension on the drive belt.

Front Lift Rod

The front lift rod also needs to be taken out of its bracket located in the front of the tractor. You will need to pull the lever out of the bracket and then push down on it so you can disengage the lift rod attaching assembly. Remove the drive belt from the pulleys.

Pull Out J-Pins

There are two J-pins that will have to be removed so you can fully disconnect the deck from the tractor. The pins are located on the deck near the rear tires of the tractor. The pins are connected to a brace that runs under the tractor and need to be pulled out to disconnect the deck from the braces.

Adjust Lift Lever

You will need to pull back on the lift lever to place it into the transport position and create room underneath the tractor so you can slide the mower out.

Slide Mower Out

The mower should be completely free of the tractor and you can pull it out to work on the belts. You should pull the mower out from the right-hand side of the tractor.

Removing the mower is a simple task, but if you are unsure of your abilities, call a Gold and Turf lawn care equipment service to come and do the job for you before the grass gets too high.

Share