Hydro question?

Discussion in 'Hustler Turf Equip (Archived)' started by Soupy, Oct 12, 2004.

  1. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    The left side of my hydro's seems to be dragging. (Hustler Z) I notice it doesn't have as much power/speed as the right. I can really notice it when I'm backing up my trailer ramp. It just seems like my left side don't have much life in it. It is fine going straight, But I use the left side most because of it being on the trim side of the deck. This mower only has 400 hours on it, but I have used it with a tow aerator.

    Do you have any advice? I don't want to take it to the dealer just yet. But I would like to know what kind of repairs I might be facing in the future. Does this sound like something that an adjustment can fix? I'm thinking not, because it is a big difference compared to the right. I don't know much about the way the hydro system works, So can you give me an idea of the different parts that might be involved, such as pump etc?

    Thank You,
  2. mowerconsultant

    mowerconsultant LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Syracuse, NY
    Posts: 9,761

    A couple things to check before getting to nervous here...
    Check your hydro fluid level, it should be up to the bottom of the filter screen in the tank.
    Check all lines and fitting for tightness, if thew unit is "sucking air" it would appear to have a pump problem.
    Check your pump control arms, make sure they are tight and not slipping on the shaft, depending on how old your unit is, there may be a newer type arm.
    Check your dampeners, you can switch them from side to side easily, see if that changes anything.
    If none of the above helped, then I would have your dealer take a look at it, they can pressure test the pumps and isolate the problem.
    Hope this helps.

  3. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    Pj, Thanks for the good advice. I will check these this week. You have been so much help to me from day one. I really appreciate it!!
  4. Doc Pete

    Doc Pete LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,469

    I'm having trouble with one of my Pumps (the usually problem part). I'll keep you informed, but I'm pretty sure I need two new pump parts.
    FYI, after much talk to Hydro-gear, I've found out you can damage the pumps in many ways, without realizing it. Working a cold pump (fluid) hard, extreme forward and reversing on pavement, and hitting a curb (stopping the machine) all can overload the pump and cause scaring of the machined fit. This will show up in leakage of the pump, which slows that side down. Moreover, the problem becomes more apparent under load (pressure) which you may notice in going up hills, traversing a bank and turning on a bank.
    My machine is 4 years, and the “normal parts” to repair my problem are about $200. Good news for new machine are that Hydro-gear has changed the two parts that normally get damaged, and price for them now should be a bit under $100.
  5. Fescue Farmer

    Fescue Farmer LawnSite Member
    Posts: 202


    You may also want to check the "dump valves". I had a pump that I thought was going out and all it ended up being the dump valve had loosened and backed itself out - I have been told that these only need to be snugged - not over tightened.
  6. theservicingdealer

    theservicingdealer LawnSite Member
    Posts: 118

    Every on is the right track but please don't make the mistake and forget the most overlooked thing. The drive belt. I have found from years of experience and mistakes that the design of the tensioner on most z are the same. This favor more tension on one side . So I would replace the belt first before you go to the dealer. I have seen pumps replaced for nothing so check it out!!
  7. Doc Pete

    Doc Pete LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,469

    Really??? If the belt "looks" good and the tension is good, I find it hard to believe that you would have only "one pump" slip. Both yes, but not just one. Furthermore, I'm trying to give the benifit of a doubt that the belt has already been throughly checked, the bypass valves are tight, fluid is Ok, and hoses are not leaking.
    Ya know, at about $80/hour for dealer services, if an LCO isn't don't some of his work own on these machines, it won't be the easiest to stay in business.
  8. theservicingdealer

    theservicingdealer LawnSite Member
    Posts: 118

    YES I KNOW IT SOUND LIKE I AM CRAZY.I have fixed serial other brands of units run through other shops that replaced a hydro -wheel motors and still had the same problem. The belt look good but have either a broken cord or something wrong with it under load. Installed a factory belt and wow we are back to new with out spending $500 dollars on pumps. It doesnt fix all but it cheaper than pumps. As a rule I change hydro belts first then test the hydros. The belt tension design does this. Believe me!!

    Maybe I better move closer to you so I can charge 80.00 and hour!!!! :help:
  9. gene gls

    gene gls LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,213

    My hydro belt and the vac unit belts don't stand up on my Hustler. The vac belts crack and the hydro belt starts slipping from dust that gets embedded in the fabric. Hustler needs to redesign their belts.

  10. Doc Pete

    Doc Pete LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,469

    I'm not going to argue with you but again, if only one side is affected, which is the original question, the belt passes around both pulleys, therefore what affects one must affect the other.
    However, if we were talking about a different problem involving both pumps and/or wheel motors I'll agree with you.

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