Whining noise when blades engaged.

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by herler, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144

    Everride 60" Warrior, operates fine but when the blades are engaged there is an ever-present whining noise that is similar to belt slippage but more in the direction of a jet engine... The sound is constant and directly proportional to the engine rpm's, the question is...

    Can spindle or idler bearings develop a whine as they go bad?
  2. Mickhippy

    Mickhippy LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,251

  3. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    Yes...... Remove belts and free spin idlers and spindles with your hand......
  4. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144

    Will do, I went ahead and ordered up the bearings and upper and lower seals ($75!!!) last night as I figured it was the most likely culprit anyhow, thanks for the great answer, just never had heard bearings make that kind of a noise before.
  5. Greg78

    Greg78 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,010

    Why order the parts first? Pull the belt and you can turn every part and find out which is the "culprit". Could have been a $25 idler pulley for all you know!!
  6. Valk

    Valk LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,711

    Or possibly even a bad/worn belt?
  7. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144

    Doesn't matter, experience tells me if there are no spindle bearings in stock some need to be ordered because it's only a matter of time before I need them anyway. That is why I ordered them, because I don't have any in stock and if you don't have spindle bearings for your mower(s) in stock, you need to order at least one set.

    I am fortunate mine apparently decided to go slow and made it through more than a day with it whining, most often spindle bearings don't give us much warning, and when they go you'll wish you had put a set aside.

    I didn't mention this but the mower in question was used ALL day with that noise going, and usually a belt making that kind of a racket won't make it much past the first lawn if it gets that far. Further the whine is coming from the left side which leads me to believe it's the left-most spindle.
    A belt whining would create a centered source of noise, unless it was rubbing...
    Which again, it wouldn't last long if that were the case.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  8. Greg78

    Greg78 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,010

    So you still don't know if it is a spindle bearing, idler pulley or a belt? Just run it till it breaks then you'll know.
  9. Greg78

    Greg78 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,010

    It's a good idea to keep spare parts on hand. I have on my shelf right now a complete set of cutter housings with new bearings, all idler pulleys, 2 sets of caster wheel bearings and all the belts for my Exmark Lazer.
  10. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144

    I wanted to update I replaced that spindle's bearings this morning and the problem is fixed, thankfully it was the left side spindle...
    Which I thought it was, that is where the noise was coming from.
    I just never knew they could wail like a banshee.

    No, but I did consider that too just I don't like to run things to that point if I know something is wrong, I try to fix it before it gets there...

    The thing is I don't like to tear into machines when I don't have the parts I might need on hand. Not even for diagnosis, taking that belt off and spinning the spindle by hand... You need a TON of rpm's to where it starts the whining, and I wasn't about to disassemble the spindle beforehand then 3 days later when the parts come in I can't remember how it goes back together...

    And I'll give that my method may not be exactly the way it's supposed to be, but I have a way of doing things and that is how I roll.

    That's right.

    Turns out...
    When a bearing starts to screaming it is apparently due to mild scoring on the OUTER race.
    Of course it still requires the entire bearing, and really the pair of them, be replaced.
    Plus the upper and lower seals: $75!
    Just in parts...

    Dang things, I did order up some extra as well, no the $75 didn't cover that.

    As to what could have caused a well-greased bearing to score...
    Must have been a minuscule piece of dirt, my best guess.

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