Belt Drive mower gears stuck--need advice

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Roachy, Apr 25, 2011.

  1. Roachy

    Roachy LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 125

    I have a toro belt drive walk behind mower that started acting up on me today when I was out mowing. I am having a lot of trouble shifting the gears and cant even put it in 5th and really hard to put in reverse. The gears seem like they are stuck. Is there any grease or oil I should be putting inside the transmission? I greased up the coupling on the outside about 2 weeks ago. Do you guys think my trans is about to go on it?? The mower is about 3 years old. Any input is great.
     
  2. Lbilawncare

    Lbilawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,116

    Check the transmission belt underneath. It may have slipped off the pulley, or the spring may have come loose.
     
  3. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    If you don't see a lot of grease leaking out of the tranny on the outside then the chances that it needs some are pretty slim. These transmissions usually fail because of improper shifting techniques. They are not "Shift On The Fly". You shoud be stopping the mower, shifting to the desired gear and then proceeding.

    More than likely you have damaged the shift keys. There are 2 of them inside of the tranny and they cost about 10 dollars each. If you attempt to replace them yourself I wholeheartedly recommend purchasing the Techumseh Peerless tranmission service manual first. These transmissions also use a special grease called Bentonite grease.

    A new transmission costs from $200 to $400.
     
  4. GPDesign1

    GPDesign1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 420

    Good advice here. Most of the "commercial duty" Peerless 700's have 4 shift keys (the 2 key units are for consumer applications), but they're still a weak design and won't tolerate banging from gear-to-gear. The keys get a slight twist and then... well, you know the rest.

    WARNING: Bentonite grease looks like something you sucked out of your septic tank. It's uber-Nasty and your P-700 has about ten gallons of it inside! By a new can of Go-Jo and a 500 pack of shop rags before you dive in- You'll need it! :laugh:
     
  5. Roachy

    Roachy LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 125

    THanks. Ya ive probably been shifting on the fly too much. I used it today and it didnt give me too much trouble. just have to wiggle to go into gears. Im def gonna baby it from now on. If some of the keys get too damaged is it an easy fix or is it worth it to just buy a new transmission?
     
  6. GPDesign1

    GPDesign1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 420

    They're dead-simple. No special tools required. Just pay attention as you get into it and be clean. Check out the shifter key grooves in the shaft to make sure there aren't any "boogers". Also, check the key slots in the gears for the same.

    When reassembling, make sure the little triangular anti-rotation nibs on the bronze bushings are seated in the matching recess. If not, it'll bust the case.
     
  7. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    Like Gary said, pay a whole lot of attention to how all of the spacers, shims and other do-dads come out of it. Most of them have to go back in in the same exact orientation and order that they come out. You may as well replace the bronze output shaft bushings since you're going to have it apart. Take your time and pay attention is the best advice.
     
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,654

    Those couplings on the outside should be greased often, only takes one squirt each.

    Greasing these mowers is imperative, unlike Ztr's most Wb's have open (unsealed) couplings,
    greasing these is a whole lot cheaper than replacing them and I suggest daily attention,
    every time the gasoline tank needs filling, grease all around the couplings.
     
  9. BrunoT

    BrunoT LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 741

    If you have the T bar there really isn't much reason to ever need to shift gears except to reverse out of a bad spot now and then. One of the pluses of that design.

    The owners manual probably has info on the maintenance for the transmission. I bought some gear oil years ago and never needed it, so it's pretty likely that your transmission is damaged if it's not a belt or other issue.

    A replacement is about $200-$250 from a parts supplier (not dealer) and can easily be bolted on. NBD.
     
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,654

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