I purchased a Honda H4518 riding mower in 1996 - been a great engine and transmission
The problem is the cutting deck belt drive system
Anyone out there have one of these machines and want to discuss the issue
Sure could use some suggestions
I've had what I consider normal 'wear and tear' issues with the 46" cutting deck . I always keep a spare drive belt on hand. Kind of a bugger to change the belt, and even worse to R&R the whole deck. I usually take a couple of deep breaths first, and then pray I don't drop it on my toe when I flip it over to clean stuck clippings or sharpen mulching blades.
I have what I think is a major problem in the making, though. Hopefully I'm wrong. The PTO has been making groaning sounds all season when the cutting belt is not engaged (of course while the engine is running, sheesh!). It has been getting worse, and yesterday, when I shut the engine off after an hour of mowing, it would not start due to something binding up there. It seems that the warmer the engine gets, the louder the noise from the PTO when the blades are not running. Is there a clutch or bearing that is a fairly common item needing to be replaced after 10-15 years with these?
I called the local Honda dealer, and they do not stock any parts, and could not give me any suggestions over the phone. They didn't even know if it was something they thought I would be able to troubleshoot myself. I was about to go out and look it over when I found this forum. I've had mine for almost 14 years. My only complaint until now has been how quickly the cooling system overheats and sounds the warning whistle as grass clippings collect on the radiator. I try to keep the fins blown out with compressed air or pressure washer which helps somewhat. Engine is solid and always runs great.