More 2011 Hustler problems

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by JTLarson, Aug 3, 2011.

  1. JTLarson

    JTLarson LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Shenandoah, IA
    Messages: 274

    Besides cut quality being an issue, now my Super Z broke the deck belt at 166 hours. Throttle cable melted on the block and bound up. Fuel tank vent broke. Both gas cap keeper strings are tangled around the fuel lines in the tank and the caps barely come off far enough to get a fuel nozzle in there. My friends X-ONE only has 68 hours on it and the deck drive belt is coming apart also. So far we are not impressed.
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  2. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,468

    Man, you've had some crap for luck with that thing! Sorry to hear all this.

    Most guys who have a Hustler, like 'em, and really brag 'em up. I suppose it could be a fluke or something, but your friend is having troubles too. Doesn't sound to good so far for 2011.

    Still have the Scag? If so, I think I'd stick to using it.
  3. MJB

    MJB LawnSite Silver Member
    from Wa
    Messages: 2,869

    I know that feeling. I used to own a Super Z. One good thing is Hustler will usually give you a loner when your down. Makes you wonder how much testing they actually did on that model. I bought the Super Z when it first came out, nothing but problems, I guess never buy a new model the 1st year it's in production , or you can end up regretting it. I hope you get it resolved then trade it .
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Out of all the things you have mentioned I can see only one that appears out of line for its age and the number of hours,
    as for the rest you are going to see wear and tear that is going to result in little things falling apart at first followed by slightly
    bigger things later and so on as they don't last forever... Unfortunately if they say that a Ztr lasts a thousand hours it's not going
    to stay in one perfectly healthy piece for all 999 hours of that and then fall to pieces at the very last second, what happens
    instead is it breaks a little bit here and there all along the way, and that is what you are seeing and I believe this to be normal,
    at least I think it is.

    As for that one piece that broke that shouldn't have, it happens.
    It shouldn't but then it's also not a hydraulic motor that went, even in the first 1-200 hours you are going to have knick knack break
    and yes it could happen some of that falls in the space of $50-$100 knick knack, again it shouldn't but...

    That having been said I found the vent pieces breaking off the gas cap rather annoying as well, both of mine are long gone.
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2011
  5. MJB

    MJB LawnSite Silver Member
    from Wa
    Messages: 2,869

    Those belts should last at least a season. I get 2 to 3 seasons or longer out of mine. My Exmarks probably last 5 seasons on average. I mow about 300 hrs per mower per season usually if that helps.
  6. BINKY1902

    BINKY1902 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from South
    Messages: 1,123

    I'm about to pass 300 hours on my original deck belt on my Gravely. No cracks, slits, or any visual defect with it yet.
  7. JTLarson

    JTLarson LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Shenandoah, IA
    Messages: 274

    I shouldn't sound so harsh I guess because they did replace everything wrong under warranty except the belt which is now $128!!! Ouch! I usually put approximately 300 hrs a year on my mower also. On Hustlers I have only had to replace the hydro belt around 300 hrs, but usually got a season and a half to two seasons out of a deck belt. The cut quality coupled with all of these little problems is getting to me. They do offer a loaner when they go down, but since I have the Scag I usually just run it. We are starting to wonder if the poor cut and early belt breakage are related?????? All the spindles spun freely when the belt was off. That was my first assumption. Maybe I need to check all the other pulleys??

    I would be more than willing to sell it if anyone is interested!! LOL! Getting offered less than 50% of what I paid for it for trade on something else. I would rather help someone else out that needed a mower than let the dealer profit, but would I really be helping someone else with all of the issues I'm having and the warranty non-transferrable?

    I guess it is just kind of my venting, but I also want others to be aware of the issues we are having. Had good luck until this year. Been eyeing Exmarks. Dealer really wants to get me on one. My original 2005 Exmark is still going strong that I sold to a neighbor!!
  8. retrodog

    retrodog LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,429

    I have to say, that most of that stuff is normal wear and tear stuff. I have a few folks that buy a $8000 mower and never expect anything to go wrong. I had a guy in here monday that he had a switch go out with 73 hours on his mower, his fuel guage will get steamed up and he can't read it if it sits in sun to long, and his blades were ate up and he had to get another set. He said he wanted to sell it because he didn't expect to ever fix anything on it since it wasn't a $1000 craftsman or wal mart mower like he had been getting. After handing him a switch (for free, under warranty), asking if he wanted another fuel guage (again free, and I explained to him they don't always tell the truth to actually open the cap everyonce in a while to double check), and handing him a set of blades (only to ask him if he wanted me to throw them on for him, free, after going through the whole blades hit things therefore wear out and have to be sharpened, and god forbid replaced). $50 for all that knowledge, and he was still I am just trying to say, sometimes bearings, pulleys, belts, pumps, motors, decks break, frames break, catch on fire, leak, doesn't work properly, and sometimes they don't and go for 1000's of hours without issues, it just happens. Give it some time, and try to justify some issues, its when you get slammed with a ton at one time when it feels like you got a lemon.
    Good example, I have one mower that went over 1500 hours with no belt, bearing, pulley, nothing but a 25amp fuse that got corrosion on it (after flipping down a highway. Then my new mower same set up, I burned a belt mowing my first day, had 2 idler pulleys cease up in less than a month, had a wheel bearing go out, in the same year had a spindle bearing go out on the chute side, and thought I had ruined the engine after hearing awful clattering coming from it, but after opening it up realized the main bolt going down the center was backed off, and put over 23 plugs in my tires. To some people that sounds excessive, but really all of that was normal maintenance items, or what we call dreaded "wear and tear", I fully expect when running a crew, but I really feel I am harder on equipment than most of my guys were. I could rant and rave and blame bearing companies, pulley people, belt factory people, say kawasakis are pieces of crap, say the mower manufacturer builds crap, but all in all when you are using equipment on a daily basis expect stuff, its hit and miss. For normal 200 to 400 hours a year I say to sit back atleast $100 to $200 for oh crap stuff, and anything over 400 a year sit back $300 to $400. When you don't break anything you have a sweet nest egg, but when you do you have it there and were expecting it, makes since when you have a tranny blow, or an engine, tire pop on the sidewall, or like my newest customer the other day....his 2 year old Gravely cracked the deck from front to back in the middle, and instead of buying a new deck for $2000 and putting it together his self with his old nuts, bolts, spindles, etc, he came in and financed a new mower..... Some companies will replace under warranty, and some will say it was the users fault, kinda like playing lottery.....
    Kinda cool about Hustler, they have great customer service, and will go over and beyond your expectations on your issues, so hopefully your negative feelings will turn positive when the rep fixes your cut issues, and figures out a spot on the new belt system stressing belts out more than normal and retrofits a pulley with a spacer, or takes one out.... Sorry for the long post, I just want you to feel better about your purchase and not make your negatives influence people into thinking an exmark, gravely, or a scag would have been a better purchase for you because they have never had these types of issues, or vice versa influence you into loosing you butt and trading in swapping freaking brands, I see that alot, and yes, I have got hella good deals, on even exmarks, and scags less than one year with the same "this things a piece of crap" mentality people feel with their new purchases..... Truth is you and your buddy could get the next serial # machine exactly the same as you have, and it might cut perfect, and never break anything, I know its weird they are identacle in every way, but its true......happens all the time....
  9. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,375

    there's a remedy for's called quality control at the factory where they are built lol
  10. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    The new fuel tanks....Don't like them at all. I'd snip the lanyard, and let it drop to the bottom. Never lost a fuel cap in my 30+ years of mowing, doubt it'll happen anytime soon.

    The deck belt.... What height are you cutting at?

    I know on my older SuperZ, that I get the best deck belt alignment at about 2.5" !!! Any higher of cut and the belt has to bend up a bit after the clutch pulley, and then pitch down when it gets to the deck (deck pitch 1/4" forward).

    If this wasn't addressed with the new SuperZ, then this could be an issue as the idlers are all different now. That big pizza plate one may be causing heat as it's contact (scrub) patch is larger than the old small 8" idlers. Just a thought.

    I've only had 2 deck belts snap in 5 years. Both were after rainy/high humidity where clutch was overly grabby.

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