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Troubleshooting a hydro transaxle?


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#1 zuren OFFLINE  

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Posted August 27, 2016 - 07:33 AM

My neighbor has an Ariens zero turn mower that has eaten the pulley on the right side hydro transaxle twice now in the past week.  I'm wondering if there is something wrong with the transaxle that is creating too much resistance, so when that side is engaged the torque from the belt destroys the pulley. 

 

Is there a good DIY approach to testing this theory?  I'm not familiar with working on hydro transaxles.

 

Thanks!


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#2 chieffan OFFLINE  

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Posted August 27, 2016 - 09:27 AM

Be sure he is using a good quality pulley and not a spot welded tin one. That is the first place I would look.  I went through that on a power steering pump on a tractor.  Went to a cast iron pulley and it was still running when I sold it years later.


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#3 Cvans ONLINE  

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Posted August 27, 2016 - 10:44 AM

Jack up that side of the mower and see if it makes any unusual noises. Grab the wheel and see if there is any play in the axle moving the wheel back and forth and up and down. Other than that ??????



#4 zuren OFFLINE  

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Posted August 27, 2016 - 01:10 PM

Be sure he is using a good quality pulley and not a spot welded tin one. That is the first place I would look.  I went through that on a power steering pump on a tractor.  Went to a cast iron pulley and it was still running when I sold it years later.

Interesting that you say this!  The replacement he put on was a genuine Ariens replacement pulley but they changed the design.  It is a stamped unit with various pieces that get "sandwiched" together when you bolt it down.  The old design was one piece, mostly cast and machined.  I'm going to order him an old design pulley as I suspect he will be having problems again.



#5 crittersf1 OFFLINE  

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Posted August 27, 2016 - 01:12 PM

Pics of the pulley?



#6 zuren OFFLINE  

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Posted August 27, 2016 - 01:40 PM

Pics of the pulley?

 

This is what the new pulley looks like:

full.png

 

Here is what the old one looked like:

01569100.jpg

 

The old design was much more substantial.  The new design feels and looks cheap (despite the $50 price tag).  It's all stamped metal.

 

The repair shop claims that he didn't torque the nut down enough.  That may be true, but the old design seems far more robust and less failure prone.  If the nut on the new design loosens at all, you have a catastrophic failure.


Edited by zuren, August 27, 2016 - 01:44 PM.





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