How to Replace Brakes on a Tractor

How to Replace Brakes on a Tractor. On the farm and in your lawn, tractors have made life easier. But it's not easy to take your tractor in to be repaired every time maintenance is necessary. With a few simple instructions, you can tackle many tractor maintenance projects yourself, and next time your tractor needs new brakes, you can feel confident that you can do it yourself.

For a Lawn Tractor

Step 1

Remove the transaxle from the tractor. It's necessary to drain the oil in order to do this.

Step 2

Locate the gear reduction housing. There, you'll remove the brake adjusting screw, the pivot pin, the brake lever and the push rod and ball. You'll also remove the front cover, the large reduction gear and the sliding brake pad cylinder. Take extra care when removing the sliding brake pad cylinder.

Step 3

Chisel out each pad and clean the counterbores where the new pads will fit.

Step 4

Install the new brake pads using a highly adhesive bonding agent or contact cement. That helps keep the pads in place.

Step 5

Reinstall the above mentioned parts in the order they were removed.

For a Farm Tractor

Step 1

Remove the rear wheels. This step is optional, but if you're just starting out, it makes it easier to access the brakes.

Step 2

Unhook the brake linkage from the cam, and remove the bolts from the cover.

Step 3

Check that the brake cam is in neutral. This means there won't be any pressure on the shoes. If the brake can is stuck, feel free to use a tool to lightly tap it and it will move.

Step 4

Use a small, flat tool to remove the cover. Take care not to break this cover. Then, remove the shoes, the brake cam and the o-ring.

Step 5

Clean the cover and the brake cam. This is an important step to do before you reinstall these parts.

Step 6

Inspect the surface of the drum to see if it's rusty. If so, you need to sand it until it's smooth. If you leave it rough, it could drastically decrease the lifespan of the new brake shoes.

Step 7

Grease the brake cam and install the new o-ring. Install new shoes and new springs, if needed.

Step 8

Add a new gasket. This helps keep moisture from causing more rust.

Step 9

Reinstall the rest of the parts and the rear wheels, in the order they were removed.

Step 10

Test the brake pedal. If it's uncomfortable, you can make the necessary adjustments.


It's possible that brake shoes could contain asbestos. Wear a mask over your mouth and nose so you don't inhale the brake dust. Each tractor has its own specifications. Refer to your tractor's manual for specific information.