How to Level a John Deere Riding Lawn Mower Deck

How to Level a John Deere Riding Lawn Mower Deck

When mowing around your home and businesses, pay attention to the recently mowed lawn. If you notice ridges forming where you recently mowed, the deck on your lawn mower may not be leveled. Luckily, leveling your mower deck is not a time consuming task, allowing you to get back to cutting the grass in no time.

Before performing any maintenance on your riding lawn mower, refer to your owner’s manual for maintenance and safety information. Maintenance instructions vary by model. Depending on your riding lawn mower model, our instructions may vary slightly so refer to your owner’s manual for more specific instructions.

Before you begin leveling your lawn mower deck follow these safety instructions. Park your mower on a hard, flat surface and shut the engine off. Set the parking brake to prevent your machine from rolling back, injuring you or others. Remove the ignition key to prevent accidental starting and wear heavy leather gloves since you’re working near mower blades.

Tools you’ll need:

  • Exact Adjust wrench
  • 18 mm wrench
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Mower gauge

Here’s what to do:

Before starting, make sure the tires on your John Deere mower are inflated. Check your owner’s manual for information on tire pressure numbers.

John Deere Tractors

Raise the mower and place the mower cutting height knob at the position specified for deck leveling. Lower the mower and check that the mower wheels are not making contact with the ground and raise if necessary. Place the mower gauge under the mower at the adjustment point near the left rear corner. If your tractor does not make contact with the gauge, adjust the deck accordingly.

Check the mower front to back level at the front adjustment point on the front left deck hanger bracket. If necessary, use the 18 mm wrench to loosen the rear nuts on each of the front lift rods. Turn the nuts on each side until the gauge slips under the front adjustment point.

Fully raise the tractor and adjust the height control knob to the desired height, then lower the machine. Adjust the wheels so they’re at least 1/4 inch off the ground. The wheels will carry the mower deck over higher areas in the lawn to give it an even cut.

John Deere Zero Turns

Make sure the mower is parked and then mount the mower. Raise the deck into the transport position. Make sure the anti-scalp wheels are not making contact with the ground.

Lower the deck to 76 mm (3 inches). Position the right mower blade on the discharge side in the front to rear position. Once the blades are in the correct position, measure the distance between the front blade tip to the ground. Use the mower gauge to check the mower blade level. The front blade tip should be 76 mm, with a tolerance of +/- 2 mm.

Move to the other side of your zero turn and position the mower blade in the front to rear position. Measure the blade’s tip to make sure it is 76 mm as well.

If one side is lower than the other, loosen the jam nut on the adjustment rod and turn the rod tube as needed to bring the tip into the proper position. When satisfied, lock the jam nut to secure the setting. Re-check both sides of the deck after the adjustment has been made to ensure it is within specification.

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How to Change the Deck Belt on a John Deere Riding Lawn Mower

How to Change the Deck Belt on a John Deere Riding Lawn Mower

When the deck belt on your John Deere riding lawn mower begins to make noise, slip, or snap, it’s time to replace it. It’s a good idea to stay on top of maintenance and repairs to extend the life of your mower. Though changing the deck belt on your lawn mower may seem overwhelming, it’s a relatively easy task. Here’s how to change the deck belt on a John Deere riding lawn mower.

Before performing any maintenance on your John Deere lawn mower, refer to your operator’s manual for maintenance, safety information, and instructions for your machine. Maintenance instructions vary by model, so depending on your riding lawn mower model our instructions may vary slightly.

Before changing the deck belt, make sure your lawn mower is parked on a flat, level surface. Shut off the engine, remove the key from the ignition, and disconnect the spark plug wire to prevent accidental starting.

Once this is done, raise the deck height lever to the highest setting. Place wooden blocks under each side of the mower deck to prepare for deck removal. Lower the deck height lever to its lowest position so the mower deck rests on the blocks.

Disconnect the deck lift linkages by removing the pins and washers. Remove the linkages from the deck, disconnect the rear draft arm, and disconnect the mower deck belt to remove the deck from the mower. Remove the wooden blocks and allow the deck wheels to touch the ground. Slide the deck from underneath the mower.

Remove the belt covers by removing the screws that hold it in place. Loosen the sheaves and remove the old deck belt. Replace it with a new John Deere deck belt.

Route the deck belt around the sheaves and pulleys, following the same path as the belt you removed. Replace the belt covers and screw them into place, and re-tighten the sheaves with the belt in position.

Place the deck height lever in the transport position to reattach the mower deck. Slide the deck back under the machine. Reinstall the pins and washers to reattach the linkage to the deck, and reattach the rear draft arm to the deck.

Lastly, reconnect the spark plug ignition wire and start the mower.

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Green-Parts-Direct.com stocks a wide inventory of parts for John Deere power equipment. Our comprehensive parts selection allows us to provide quick response times and help you confidently find the parts you need.

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