Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)/shifting hard


QUESTION: This is in regards to a Murray 30560b 30" 10hp rear engine riding mower.  It hadn't been used for a couple years and now it seems that the shifter is hard (stiff) and sometimes tough to get in the correct spot for the gear.  There doesn't seem to be any binding on the linkages.  Do these rear ends have a plug where you can add more grease, or what should I be looking to do to help it?

ANSWER: Do you have the Dana 4450-1 transaxle?

If so, then the transaxle uses grease, not oil.  You pretty much have to dis-assemble the entire transaxle to change or replace the have to scoop/scrape out the old grease.  

You can try loosening the detent ball screw and see if it shifts any easier.  If so, spray some WD-40 in the hole as the ball or fan gear may be rusty...see this before.

Parts list link:


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I don't know what transmission is in it.  Is the detent ball screw where the shifter rod goes into the transmission?

No, the detent ball is located inside the transaxle.  There will be a screw on top of the transaxle to access the detent spring and ball.

The screw hole allows you to insert the detent ball, then the spring and finally the screw to hold them in place after you have finished assembling the transaxle.  

It will probably by very difficult to access the screw with the transaxle in place. You could try lowering the transaxle by removing the retaining bolts but even then I'm not sure you would have enough room to access the screw.

Have you ever removed a transaxle?


Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)

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Eric A. Jones


Lawnmower Repair . Certified Master Service Technician from B&S. Have 23 years experience on B&S, Lawn Chief, Weed Eater, Echo, Peerless, Wheel Horse, Snapper, Atlas, MTD, McCulloch, Homelite and many other numerous brands. Specialize in electrical repair.


Born and raised in the midwest. Started tinkering with engines when I was about 14 on my Suzuki RM-80. I began lawn mower repair at a small hardware store. I knew absolutely nothing. I read lots of repair manuals and met an older fellow who taught me many lessons. I continued working on small engines through high school and paid my way through college working on mowers at the same hardware store. Decided to get away from the midwest and mower repair so I joined the Air Force. I repaired air traffic control electronic equipment and ended up in Hawaii where I got a part time job at Small Engine Clinic. I gained a lot of experience from the Small Engine Clinic and had a blast repairing small engines. I then took the Briggs and Stratton Master Service Technician test and earned my MST. I then traveled to Wisconsin where I attended the factory update training seminar and received formal training. Continued working on mowers part time as I completed 20 years of military. Retired from the military on a Friday and continued in the lawn and garden industry the next Monday.

MAS Aerospace Operations BA Mathematics AAS Electronic Communications AAS Electronic Technology

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