The lawn mowers are an important part of every garden and it’s designed with a deck that not only protects the users but also the engine. That’s because the mower deck makes sure the engine is protected from debris and grass blades. In addition, it prevents the spinning blade from projecting the objects.
The mower deck is designed to raise and go down to make sure the grass is cut properly, but if your mower deck isn’t raising or lowering, there are various solutions that you can try!
Fixing Mower Deck Will Not Raise Or Lower
- Check If You Have Installed It Right
Since mower decks are universal, many people use them interchangeably but don’t focus on the installation. That’s because incorrect installation can restrict the deck’s motion, hence issues in raising and lowering.
The solution is to take out the deck and reinstall it according to the instructions mentioned in the user manual. However, if the user manual isn’t available, you can ask a professional gardener to install the deck for you.
If your mower is battery-based, there are chances that the battery is weak, which is why the deck is not working properly. In addition to deck-related issues, a weak battery will fail to operate the blades.
Having said that, it’s recommended that you charge the battery by jumpstarting the mower. Once the battery is fully charged, the mower deck will start working properly.
Height is an important factor when it comes down to raising and lowering the mower deck. However, many people set the height too low, which doesn’t leave enough space to move.
For this reason, we recommend that you turn the height adjusting knob to increase the height a bit and test the deck until you achieve the height that supports smooth raising and lowering.
In particular, the issue happens when users set the height to five. However, the ideal practice is to set the height adjusting knob to one and it will optimize the deck’s movement.
On the other hand, if the height adjusting knob is stuck, it’s recommended that you turn the lockout valve in a counterclockwise direction and raise the hydraulics. Then, try to adjust the knob and it will move easily.
- Lift Linkage
If the mower deck is still not working properly, you have to check on the left side of the lower arm to locate the lift linkage. In case the lift linkage is not connected to the lower arm, it could be the reason behind the deck’s movement issues.
So, if the linkage has slipped off, you have to put it back in place. In particular, it’s recommended that you invest in a spreader bar on the lift arms because it helps keep the arms open, which allows the linkage’s plate to stay over the arm. In addition to a spreader bar, you can also opt for a drawbar.
Secondly, you have to look for bent or broken linkages. In most cases, contact with a granite marker jams the lift linkages.
For this purpose, you have to inspect the lift area. If the lift links are bent or are frayed, they need to be replaced (you can try straightening the bent links). However, you must hire a professional to change the links as the connections are sensitive.
The linkage is important because it’s designed with the nut that’s tightened to raise the desk and is loosened to lower the mower deck. So, if the nut or linkage gets damaged, you have to get it replaced.
In case you want to replace the linkage on your own, you’ve to take out the pin that’s holding the linkage in place and remove the cable as well as the linkage.
Then, disconnect the cable from the linkage and connect it to the new linkage. Make sure that you insert the cable tightly, and when the cable connection is done, put the linkage in place and screw in the pin to tighten it in place.
- Lockout Valve
In case your mower has a hydraulic system, there are chances that the lockout valve is closed. That’s because if the lockout valve is closed, it locks the entire system and the deck won’t move.
So, consult your equipment’s user manual to locate the lockout valve and make sure it is open. Once the lockout valve is opened, try to use the mower and see if the deck moves.
The pins are used to attach different components of the mower to the deck and rods. However, if any of these pins are damaged, it can make it challenging for the deck to connect to the lifting arm and you won’t be able to adjust the deck’s height either.
So, if the deck won’t move and you cannot adjust the height, it’s recommended that you check the pins and replace the broken ones. In addition, if some pins are missing, purchase new ones but be careful about the size.
The brackets are attached to the deck and contains the deck’s gear assembly (this assembly is responsible for raising and lowering the deck). However, if the bracket becomes damaged, it will impact the deck’s ability to move.
The only solution for a damaged bracket is to replace it. For this purpose, you have to remove the deck and locate the bracket by following instructions from the user manual.
You have to remove the bolt that’s holding the bracket in position and it will come out. Then, just put the new bracket on the deck and use a bolt to put it in place. However, when you purchase the new bracket, make sure it’s the same size as the previous one.
The mower has a cable that connects the deck and lift handle, and you have to check it when the deck stops working. It’s connected by a rod or a linkage and plays a part in lowering and raising the deck.
However, with time, this cable can stretch or break down, which makes it challenging to control the deck’s position. So, check the cable and replace it if it seems damaged or frayed.
You can also replace the cable by locating its attachment points and disconnecting them. Then, put a new cable and tighten the attachment points. Also, if your mower has a pulley for running the cable, make sure that it’s working smoothly .
If the rod bends, it will cause issues while adjusting the deck’s height and position and the only solution is to replace the bent rod. For this purpose, you’ve to take out the hex nut on the adjustment rod’s front side and take out the bent rod. Once the bent rod is out, put in the new one and screw in the hex nut.
The rods are convenient to replace as you only have to tighten the hex nut and a few pins. Also, if some pins and hex nuts seem damaged, it’s better that you purchase the new ones to ensure secure connections.
In some rare cases, the mower deck doesn’t work because of the terrain. It’s recommended that you use the mower on even surfaces, and to prevent further damage to the deck, you must avoid debris and bumps.
Also, it’s recommended that you clean the bottom side of the deck properly to make sure grass cutting or other debris isn’t jamming the deck.
The Bottom Line
The decks are an important part of a mower and are often added to lawn tractors as well. However, if the mower deck has stopped working, you can try the solutions mentioned in this article.
In case something needs to be replaced or repaired, you must put the equipment on a leveled surface to make sure the connections are secured in place.