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Exmark Metro HP Stops when going uphill in any gear higher than first

Graveslawncare

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Nashville, TN
I have a 48" Exmark Metro HP belt driven stand-behind. I bought it used last year, I'm pretty sure its a late 90's model. It runs good, starts right up, and cuts good, but lately it has started showing this weird symptom. In first gear, it will go up hills and stuff just fine, but you go any higher than that and it just stops, and if you try to push it, it acts jerky and will only move a little bit and you have to work real hard to get it turned around. Has anyone else had this problem and knows how to fix it? I'm kinda stumped.
 

ffemt1271

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Shreveport, La.
sounds like yor drive belts are slipping, you can adjust the spring attatchment point to create more pressure on the belt, or replace the belt.
 
OP
Graveslawncare

Graveslawncare

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Nashville, TN
I did that already. I moved them down to the most extreme point and it still does it. I don't see any belts slipping either. Everything just stops. Then when I squeeze halfway down on the brakes, the mower starts to roll back, and then of course it brakes when I squeeze all the way down
 

ffemt1271

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Shreveport, La.
there is also a belt underneath that goes from the engine to transmission, it has a manual tensioner on it, think it's a 9/16" nut, other than that it would have to be the transmission
 
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Graveslawncare

Graveslawncare

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Nashville, TN
Ya, I just got off the phone with my local exmark guy and he said that either replacing, or tightening the tentioner on that transmission belt is probably my best bet. I have considered it being the transmission, but it goes fine on level ground, which I don't think it would do if the transmission was going out. I'm going to tighten that tentioner tomorrow morning and see if it works. I will post my results :)
 
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Graveslawncare

Graveslawncare

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Nashville, TN
Ok, the very good news is that I fixed it. It went up my driveway in 3rd gear and it ran on the road in 5th gear, which is also an improvement because it used to not go at all in 5th gear. So here is the whole deal spelled out for anyone's benefit who might have a similar problem:

Bottom line, I simply replaced the transmission belt. It was a little over 20 bucks and about an hours labor, cuz you really have to take the deck off to be able to effectively work under the engine where all your belts are. But still, it was pretty simple. The reason my mower was stopping when it was going uphill, and wouldn't go in high gears like 5th, is because the transmission belt was slipping and therefore not creating the pull. Now here is the reason for the slippage: I learned something about these belts when I picked up the new one this morning. They explained to me that the pullies on these mowers do not grip and pull the smooth inside of the belt, but rather they grip and pull the rough stitch-like surface on the sloped part of the belt. And sure enough, when I took off the old belt, it was slicker than snot, there wasn't even a trace left of the grip stitch. That's pretty much it, I put on the new belt and from that point on it started acting like it's supposed to again.

Hope this helps somebody else, and I appreciate the people who posted on my original suggesting that belt slippage may be the problem. It led to the solution. Happy Mowing!
 

burkcs

LawnSite Member
Location
Acworth, GA
Thanks for the info. I have a similar problem with my 48" Metro HP. At first I begin experiencing the same issues getting up hills in high gear (low gear would go right up) I tighten the tention on the drive belts and it helped some. However, now I have an issue with my mower hesitating or pulsing while running across a flat surface in any gear. I was looking at replacing the drive belts, but at $20 bucks for the transmission belt I may try that first as I can not visually see the drive belts slipping.

Exmark drive belts are around $60 bucks each.
 

DT Lawn Care

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Grand Rapids, MI
Thanks for the info. I have a similar problem with my 48" Metro HP. At first I begin experiencing the same issues getting up hills in high gear (low gear would go right up) I tighten the tention on the drive belts and it helped some. However, now I have an issue with my mower hesitating or pulsing while running across a flat surface in any gear. I was looking at replacing the drive belts, but at $20 bucks for the transmission belt I may try that first as I can not visually see the drive belts slipping.

Exmark drive belts are around $60 bucks each.
Yeah, the trans belt underneath is usually the culprit. Going only in low gears is usually a dead giveaway.
 
OP
Graveslawncare

Graveslawncare

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Nashville, TN
Well I'm glad it helped you out! Mine got so bad that you almost couldn't mow anything at all in anything higher than first gear. The belt edges were completely worn out. You'll have to drop the deck to be able to effectively get under the motor deck to replace the belt, but its well worth the trouble :)
 

burkcs

LawnSite Member
Location
Acworth, GA
Well I'm glad it helped you out! Mine got so bad that you almost couldn't mow anything at all in anything higher than first gear. The belt edges were completely worn out. You'll have to drop the deck to be able to effectively get under the motor deck to replace the belt, but its well worth the trouble :)
Problem resolved with a $10 transmission belt. When I pulled mine off I found a big 1" chunk missing from the inside of the belt. Thanks dude, you saved me some coin.
 
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