Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)/Oil on Belt & Pulley


Hi Eric

Snapper LT125, 23hp B&S/42, model 2690808.

Tried draining oil from the oil drain valve at lower side of engine block. Suppose to turn drain valve quarter turn and pull out and the oil suppose to flow. Was very slow so I tried to pull off the clear flexible drain tube I had attached to the drain valve. But the flex tube was on tighter than I thought and when I pulled the flex tube the whole drain valve came off. Oil everywhere. Lot of oil on top of front pulley and some on belt. Fortunately I had newspaper & towels already on the floor.

My question is, since I got oil on the pulley & belt, is belt going to slip when I engage the blade or cause other problems? The oil is NOT on entire belt, just a small area, just where the belt touches the front pulley. I intentionally did not start engine to find out if it would slip because I thought the oil might get on the other pulleys and along the entire belt and make it worse.  

I cleaned all the oil off of everything, especially the pulley but Im sure some oil is between the belt and the pulley. Its not enough oil that you can see it, but as I was wiping I could tell some oil got behind the belt. Wiped belt to remove all oil but did not take it off.

At 66 y/o, I thought I had finished all my bone-head mistakes; guess not.

Thanks Eric.

It should not really hurt much but if you can access the pulley/belt area you could spray some brake cleaning on the belt to try and clean the area.

Use some decent brand brake cleaner, CRC or Valvoline...just do NOT use the Walmart generic brand as sometimes the generic brake cleaner is very aggressive...I've had it eat paint and rubber parts. I'd also stay away from carb cleaner as it could cause damage to the belt.

If, for some reason the belt does slip, do NOT use belt dressing.  Belt dressing may work well in certain situations but in the lawn and garden industry I have only seen bad things with belt dressing...just admit the oops and replace the belt if you have to.


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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