How to Troubleshoot Mower Blades That Will Not Engage

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Inspect the mower before each use.
Inspect the mower before each use. (Image: Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

The blades of a riding mower must be engaged for the tractor to cut. When the blades no longer engage, inspect the mower for damage and defects. A few factors may cause the blades not to engage. Checking these things yourself can save a costly repair bill.

Things You'll Need

  • Deck belt
  • Metal putty knife

Check the blade rotation control lever to ensure it is securely in position. Wiggle the handle to ensure it is not stuck between positions.

Check the drive belt for damage or excessive wear. Replace if needed.

Clean under the mower deck to ensure that debris is not clogging the drive shaft and that the shaft is not damaged or bent.

Level the mower housing, making sure the blades are even.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear gloves when handling mower blades.

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