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Smolenski7

Rattling Noise under Prestige

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Smolenski7

Hi,

I have a 2006 Prestige. Lately I've noticed a rattling noise, almost like someone is rattling a chain coming from under my tractor. When I engage the brake/clutch it goes away immediately, so I spent a few minutes under the tractor and came to a quick conclusion that it is one or both of the pulleys under the tractor. Either the idler pulley or the pulley right next to it.

Here's a diagram. I'm referring to parts 14 and/or 17. I really don't know which one.

https://www.partstree.com/parts/simplicity/mowers-lawn-garden-tractor/2690252-simplicity-prestige-garden-tractor-w-ps-rmo-50-deck-23hp-hydro/controls-group-986599/

My basic question is this. How can I tell if it is the idler pulley or the pulley next to it? They are so close I can't tell if one or both of them is making the noise?

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Smolenski7

So I spent a little more time under the tractor today, left work asap! :D

There is no play in either spindle when the tractor is shut down. I even took the second spindle off (not the idler pulley) and put it back on as tight as I can turn my socket wrench. Trust me, there is no play. With that said, they do move when the tractor is on and the belt is moving. If the belt isn't moving, there is no noise.

In addition, both bearings turn without a problem, nothing it hung up. I tried with the belt on, they both spun. Then I tried with the belt off, and they both spun.

Finally, I thought that it might be the extension spring so I placed a wrench against it to prevent it from vibrating. The noise didn't change at all so I don't think that the spring is the cause of the noise.

I've included a link that shows both spindles rotating. If you listen carefully, you can easily hear the rattling noise.

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Mike_H

Sounds like the rattle is in sync with the belt motion on the opposite side of the idler pulleys. Its moving around quite a bit, and maybe its bumping on something? The belt might be stretched, and ready to be replaced.

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Smolenski7

Some more information.

I think the belt is original to the machine, I'm not sure because I'm not the original owner. It appears to be in good shape, but I didn't inspect it too closely, just a once over because it appeared to be fine.

The tractor is about 9 - 10 years old with only 236 hours. I've had tractors with twice that number of hours and never had to replace this belt.

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Smolenski7
quote:Originally posted by BLT

It looks like an idler isn't tight enough the way the belt is jumping back and forth.


id="quote">
id="quote">I guess I will try to tighten it tomorrow, but it sure seemed pretty tight when I checked it while the tractor was off.

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RayS

My original drive belt on my 2002 Prestige lasted 8 years. I remember it was 2010 because I had to change it a month after a back surgery. The other broke a year ago. I don't think they use the same quality of belts since Briggs bought them out.

Also the pulleys can be shot even if there is no movement in them. If the grease in the bearings is gone. They will make noises running on dry bearings.

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Burntime

Ray is right on the money. I had a snowthrower that would throw the belt. I checked alignment, tension, etc. Everytime is would jump the pulley. The pulley spun freely. A pulley can act different when it is static vs under a load, and it doesn't take many times around to tighten up. I grabbed a new pulley and good as gold.

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Smolenski7
quote:Originally posted by RayS

My original drive belt on my 2002 Prestige lasted 8 years. I remember it was 2010 because I had to change it a month after a back surgery. The other broke a year ago. I don't think they use the same quality of belts since Briggs bought them out.Also the pulleys can be shot even if there is no movement in them. If the grease in the bearings is gone. They will make noises running on dry bearings.


id="quote">
id="quote">So, do you suggest changing the idler pulley, the other pulley, or both? Is there a way to tell which one could be the problem for a simple DIY'er like me?

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RayS

Bearings that have grease in them will pretty much stop spinning after you spin them by hand. A dry bearing will spin alot longer. It may not even be that. I would do a good inspection of the belt before I replaced the pulleys.

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Smolenski7
quote:Originally posted by RayS

Bearings that have grease in them will pretty much stop spinning after you spin them by hand. A dry bearing will spin alot longer. It may not even be that. I would do a good inspection of the belt before I replaced the pulleys.


id="quote">
id="quote">Besides the obvious wear on a belt, like cracking and splitting, what are the signs a belt needs to be replaced? Can they just extend a bit and become loose?

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BLT

Todays belts have virtually no stretch tolerance, with the exception of the fraction HP furnace belt. The will snap and give a clean break, but, that comes from loose tensioning.

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RayS

They can crack and be held together by the top portion of the belt. The v shape can also wear and get smaller. Which would ride further down in the v on the pulley. Which is lengthing the belt in away or causing slack in the belt.

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Smolenski7

Ok, so instead of waiting I headed down to my dealer and got his opinion. I showed him the video and he was 90% sure it was the bearings in the pulley. So, I bought both pulleys, installed both in about 15 minutes, turned on the ignition, and the same rattling noise is present!ngr2

I also gave the belt a good once over, it looks to be in great shape. In fact, it doesn't even look old. I'd be willing to be that the previous owner changed it.

I also don't think it's the extension spring because when I press on it to make it stop vibrating, the noise is still present.

Is there something else that could be making that noise from that area?

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Smolenski7
quote:Originally posted by Bruker

I had a similar noise on a Prestige a few years ago. Turned out to be a bad deck drive belt. You couldn't see a problem with the belt but it must have been stretched or out of balance.


id="quote">
id="quote">Thanks for the help, but the noise doesn't have anything to do with the deck. The deck isn't even installed at the moment.

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Smolenski7

Solved.

It was the brake rod and the clotter pin underneath. The washer that separates the two of them had become warn, causing some play. The vibration was killing me. I solved the problem by replacing the washer with 2 rubber washers. Now it probably vibrates less, and even if it doesn't, I don't hear it.

I did replace those pulleys, which was a waste of $33.00, however, I least I won't have to worry about them for a long, long time.

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