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Cub Cadet / Mower drive belt keeps throwing off

1 United States Review updated:

I bought a Cub Cadet LT 1045 in September of 2006. The mower blade drive belt started throwing off in the spring of 2007. So far, I have 40 hours on this mower, it has been in the shop twice, the first time for the blade drive belt, the transmission pedal fell down onto the foot rest, and the parking brake would not engage. I got the mower back after about a month, this in August of 2997, the shop did not put the right belt on and the blade drive belt kept flying off, the vibration in the blade deck was still there, and the4 parking brake still would not engage. They did fix the transmission pedal, and told me that to keep it from happening again, I needed to keep the mower dry. I took the mower back to Home Depot where I bought it, and they sent it to another shop, this one in Lakeland Florida. When I got the mower back, I got touse it two times before the mowing season eneded. The mowing season has started again in earnest, and now the blade drive belt still flies off, and now once that happens the electric PTO will not engage again until the next day. I have a little under an acre to mow. The mower now has 40 hours on it, and I have sent emails to Cub Cadet, and never heard anything back from them. To be honest here, if you want to have a mower that you have to put in the sdhop every time you turn around, and is entirely undependable, then a Cub Cadet is the mower for you, however, if you want something solid and dependable, you really should consider any other brand because a Cub Cadet just is not going to work for you.

John Amstutz,
Plant City, Florida

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  • Bo
      8th of Jun, 2012
    +1 Votes

    I have a 2006 Cub 1046 and it has started throwing the belt that drive the mower blades. Everything looks good but it still tosses them off.

  • Te
      29th of Dec, 2014
    +1 Votes

    Bought my Cub Cadet from Tractor Supply in 2005. Less that 5 hours it threw the belt. Could not re-install it. Saw that parts were missing from mower deck ( I work maintenance on production equipment) and took the whole thing back to tractor supply. They gave me a new one no questions asked. 2nd one had all the parts on the deck, but the motor smoked a lot. Took it to factory authorized service in area and was told they wouldn't get paid for the work by manufacturer and that they welded part of the cylinder. That fix lasted 4 months maybe. So oil drips on the exhaust manifold and muffler . . . you'd think I'd kill all the mosquitos in the county, but not that luck either. Now it won't start and backfires like crazy. Not sure if I want to get it fixed or go buy a cheaper lawn tractor. I have hated this piece of crap since I got it. Never again will there be a Cub Cadet on my property . . .

  • Li
      1st of Nov, 2013
    +1 Votes

    I purchased a LGT 1054 model. At 10 hours, the front tire rod came off. At 14 hours, the front wheel went flat and needed air with every use. At 28 hours, the belt came off and would not stay on. I contacted Cub Cadet customer service and made it to the third level. They agreed to send me a belt. After much research, I found that this was a common problem and contacted customer service again. They denied any such problem, pointing out that they would have been advised by their engineers. I advised "level III" to look on the internet, as it was screaming with the same complaint. I called three Cub Cadet authorized service repair technicians in three different states and all stated that the belt issue was a common problem, that Cub Cadet knows about it, and that putting on a new belt would not fix the problem. The issue is a design problem with the pulley system. I called customer service again and they again denied any problem, but authorized a "repair" by one of their technicians. I contacted every senior officer of MTD and got a letter which stated they apologize for the circumstances that caused me to write and would also authorize a repair. The rep repaired the mower using a "Low Cut Idle Kit Part Number 759-05026 from cub cadet designed for this issue, which they deny is a problem. He also fixed the wheel/tire issue stating that it is common for the bead to break and go flat on this machine. He did say, the Idle Kit would not fix the problem permanently. MTD and Cub Cadet have yet to acknowledge that there is a problem and offer the consumer anything. When my mower was delivered, there were 8 hours on it. I purchased it from Tractor Supply. The Cub Cadet service reps also advised me often these mowers would throw their belts after one or two hours and Tractor Supply would take them back and resell them as new, knowing there was a problem. I would warn anyone against purchasing a Cub Cadet Mower or dealing with Tractor Supply.

  • Ju
      18th of Apr, 2014
    +1 Votes

    At exactly 50 hours my deck belt came off. The warranty paid the fix. 6 months later and exactly 5 or 6 times after the fix the belt came off again. Cub Cadet will not pay the bill this time. Seems like a design problem not an operator or maintenance problem. The warranty rep has lied on the repair ticket that this was because of a failure to perform maintenance on the product. It had just made it 50 hour oil change!

    I have another brand riding mover that has been running for 8 years and never did it have such a problem.

    No more cub cadets!

  • Co
      20th of Aug, 2014
    +1 Votes

    I have a Cub Cadet Commercial Zero-turn 48 inch deck that's 2 years old I cut at number 7 on deck height and my belt comes off at least 3 times on my 3 1/2 acres and wraps it’s self around the Idler pulley bracket. I looked under the mower and the PTO pulley doesn't line up with the mower deck idler pulley that what is causing the belt to jump you mean to tell me that Cub Cadet can't see this I replaced my belt 2 times costing $43 a piece. This is a Factory Problem.

  • Li
      20th of Aug, 2014
    +1 Votes

    Update: The belt continues to come off even with their so called fix.

  • Tg
      8th of Apr, 2015
    +1 Votes

    i am aswell having the same issue and am working on the deck constantly ... Dough22 your pic did not upload ?

  • Sm
      26th of Apr, 2015
    +1 Votes

    Here is a good video on how to fix this issue. I followed his placement of the pulley arms but relocated my springs where they were pulling more directly against the belt tension. All you really need for this is some 3/8 bolts, nuts and washers and a drill.
    Where you mount the bolts to hold the springs make sure they have plenty of tension once the belt is on the mower.

  • Pm
      28th of Sep, 2014
    0 Votes

    I bought a used LT1045 from a friend and mow just a normal-sized residential yard. My belt comes off almost always when I put the mower in reverse without shutting off the blades first, but it can happen at other times too, but I can usually prevent this from happening by just never shutting off the blades and never going into reverse.

  • Th
      8th of Feb, 2015
    -1 Votes

    For you LT1045 owners. The mower deck belt throwing problem is readily fixed. Root cause is right-most idler pulley is mis-aligned about 3/8" too high. Fix is to remove its bracket and have a shop cut it and lower bracket height by 3/8". Did this to my LT1045 back in 2008 and have had no problems. Other thing is to *assure* that no oil or grease or debris interferes with free swiveling of both idler pulley brackets. Always keep contact area between pulley brackets and deck clean (use carb cleaner or whatever). No oil or grease (will attract dirt and bind). Frequently check for freedom of movement prior to mowing, ENGINE OFF, by grabbing both idler pulleys and moving them back and forth. If they don't freely move fix it or you will throw a belt. Yes, I know that the original design is less than adequate but if you do the above I expect you will minimize problems. It did for me.

  • Do
      7th of Apr, 2015
    -2 Votes

    Here's a photo of the fix I used. Just remove the outer idler pulley bracket, take it to a shop and have them cut it where shown and re-weld so the outer pulley is 3/8" lower. You can see in the photo how the belt is better aligned. My LT1045 has never thrown a belt.

  • Di
      8th of Jun, 2009
    0 Votes

    Maybe Cub Cadet management would like to hear about your troubles. Try contacting [protected] regarding these problems.

  • Ya
      9th of Sep, 2016
    0 Votes

    Bought my LTX two years ago. Throttle was defective and replaced second month. Used to mow 2 1/2 acres weekly with no problems other than front tire losing air weekly. However, this year, the throttle problem reoccurred but Cub Cadet sent me one free and I installed it. My drive belt shredded and smoked so I installed a new one. Mowed about 600 feet and another drive belt shredded and smoked. Give up-and after reading these posts, have decided to purchase a different brand. Not enough time and too much yard to put up with all this noise. Will fix, if possible, and sell. No more!

  • Cu
      9th of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes

    Got my mower at the same time 2008 threw the belt the second year called a couple of shops that said they would not even work on it because of a belt problem or pulley problem the thing that gets me is Home depot doe's not sell parts like belts if I have to keep replacing them maybe it would be a good idea for the place where I bought it would stock the parts for the junk mower I bought there!!! Steve Herm Louisvile Ky

  • Je
      22nd of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes

    i also have the same belt problem. i've put on 3 belts so far this season, at 45 bucks a pop. i get about 10 hours of mowing out of each belt before it begins being thrown off. i've checked alignment and tension on the deck but alignment with the drive pulley could very well be the problem since the deck moves up and down and the drive pulley doesn't move, there must be an alignment problem there. local service person doesn't want to see it. tells me the rpm is too high or i'm mowing too low and it is not a maintenance issue. no more cub cadets for me.

  • Eg
      24th of Jul, 2018
    0 Votes

    @jerry33 Get a 49 inch belt from advance Auto and make a extension for spring to connect spring or longer spring I was having same problem now my tank is ok

  • Go
      3rd of Aug, 2010
    0 Votes

    We have a 2006 Cub Cadet “Tank” Commercial Zero-turn model number m48kw.
    We are in the middle of our 4th. season and have replaced 15 belts (at about $35 a piece) that power the blades. We found out about a supposed fix called a Deck Drive Idler Kit from Service Advisory #CC-559. It cost us $180.00 labor and the mower was less than a year old.
    When the belt jumps off it wraps it’s self around the Idler arm pulley bracket.
    Some times if we catch it before it burns the belt up we can just reinstall it.
    The pulleys are not all in line with each other, it came this way from the factory.
    Any help would be appreciated

  • Ny
      3rd of Jun, 2011
    0 Votes

    I also have a Cub Cadet LT1045 that throws the deck belt quite often and has been doing it since 2007. This is a Manufacturing design defect. The PTO pulley plane to the deck pulley plane is drastically off. Cannot mow on lowest setting ever. There should either be something that assures all pulleys align in the same plane or there should be "keeper" shoulder bolts around each pulley (including the PTO pulley) to prevent the belt from jumping off. I will NEVER, NEVER, NEVER buy another Cub Cadet product. I have a 1989 Bolens GT2000 that runs like a swiss watch and have had a low end MTD 17HP hydro tractor that never threw a belt!

  • Ad
      24th of May, 2012
    0 Votes

    I am having same issues with my ltx 1050. The mower has 22 hours on it and constantly throws belt off! What a piece of crap!! I just got it back from shop where I purchased mower and it threw belt off again. Took it back same day and they said they spoke to a cub cadet tech and they know what is going on. My question is if they know this is a common issue why has there not been a recall? My guess is there is a design flaw and they will keep putting new belts on and just give mowers back to people saying they fixed it. This is why 99% of all new products don't last like older models because manufacturers are more worried about cost savings then making a good quality product. It's a damn same!

  • Do
      10th of Apr, 2013
    0 Votes

    I've got a LT1045 I bought in 2008. Belts, belts and more belts. I can't remember a time that I've made it all the way through cutting my 3/4 ac. yard without having to stop and put the belt back on. It's been 100's and 100's of time. I've replaced the 46" deck belt no less than 16 times since it was bought new. For a mower that "has a deck designed by a aerospace engineer" I dog-gone sure wouldn't stand next to their rocket. The Kohler engine has been dependable but not without some repairs. the top crank case cover came loose and slung motor oil everywhere. The steering it pitful and wore out way before it should have. The front wheels are toed out real bad. All in all the thing works me to death. I despise this mower and probably won't buy a cub cadet again.

  • Ar
      28th of May, 2013
    0 Votes

    I have a 2 years old LTX 1050 and also the same problem with the belt popping off all the time. At $40+ belt retail price, It would be better to have a contractor doing the job for me. This is not acceptable!!!

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