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The Most Common Cub Cadet Mower Deck Problems and Solutions

Cub Cadet lawnmowers are considered some of the finest pieces of machinery available in the market these days. Their lawnmowers are known for their safety features, reliable cutting performance, and durable construction that survives the test of time.

But just because you are going with a Cub Cadet lawnmower doesn’t mean you can forgo the maintenance duties that inevitably come with any mowers.

On the contrary, failing to take care of your lawnmower will lead to several issues and component failures regardless of the brand and model that you use.

Apart from engine issues or transmission failures, the deck in your Cub Cadet lawnmower can also start to malfunction if you don’t treat it right.

Some of the common issues include a noticeable decline in cutting performance, excessive vibration in the deck, or even step cutting issues.

However, don’t throw in the towel just yet if you face any of these issues. You can fix most of these problems on your own as long as you know what you are doing.

And if you are unfamiliar with troubleshooting your lawnmower, then let me lend you a helping hand.

In this article, I will address some of the common issues that may come up in your Cub Cadet’s mower deck and help you fix them with minimal hassle on your end. So, let’s get started.

The Most Common Cub Cadet Mower Deck Problems

How To Adjust The Deck In Your Cub Cadet Lawnmower?

Before I take you through the common issues, it’s best to talk a bit about how you can adjust the mower deck in your Cub Cadet vehicle. Since most of the deck-related issues can be fixed with a simple adjustment in the deck, this will help you out in the long run.

Here are the steps to manually adjust the mower deck in Cub Cadet lawnmowers.

  1. Park the vehicle on a flat surface and turn the engine off. I would also recommend removing the spark plug wire so that it doesn’t turn on unintentionally.
  2. Check the tire pressure using a pressure gauge and make sure all the tires are inflated properly. I know this is not the same as leveling the deck, but sometimes, improperly inflated tires can also lead to an unlevel cut from your lawnmower.
  3. Rotate the blades to the side and measure from one edge of the blade to the ground using a tape measure. Do the same for the other side. Jot down the two measurements and subtract them from each other.
  4. If the difference between the two sides is nearly 1/8 of an inch, then there’s no need to make any adjustments. However, if the difference is higher, then you need to make some adjustments in the deck.
  5. To make adjustments, start by turning the lift link lock nut to the left side. You can find it in front of the rear wheel. Each turn of the nut will adjust the height of the deck by about 3/16 inches. A clockwise turn will raise the deck, while a counterclockwise turn lowers it.
  6. Once you make some adjustments, measure the distance from the blade to the ground again. Similar to before, take note of the difference and see if it’s within the acceptable range. Once that’s done, you can move on to the next step.
  7. Rotate the blades again so that they are facing forward. The idea is the same as before – use a tape measure to measure the distance to the ground both from the bottom edge and front edge of the blade. Subtract the values.
  8. In this case, you need to make sure that the front blade tips are around 1/8-inch to 1/2-inch lower than the rear blade tips. If the angle is outside that range, you need to adjust the blade.
  9. To adjust the mower’s blade, you need to use a wrench to loosen the jam nut. This will give you access to the adjustment nut. Now simply rotate the adjustment nut clockwise to tighten or raise the blade or counterclockwise to loosen or lower the blade to your desired level.
  10. Once you make your adjustments, take the same measurements again and see if the difference is between acceptable parameters. If it’s fine, then you can reinstall the spark plug and start using your lawnmower. The deck should be perfectly level now.

Common Issues With The Cub Cadet Mower Deck And How To Fix Them

Common Issues With The Cub Cadet Mower Deck

Now that you understand how to restabilize the deck in your lawnmower, things will go much smoother. In my experience, resetting the deck gets rid of most of the problems that come up in Cub Cadet mowers.

But a few issues require a bit more troubleshooting than that. Here are some of the common issues you might face with your Cub Cadet mower deck.

1. Step Cutting

Step cutting is a common problem not just in Cub Cadet but also in most other lawnmowers out there. This is when your lawnmower leaves sharp edges on the grass instead of trimming them down to a smooth level.

Typically, this issue comes up due to damage in the deck, adjustment issues, or damaged blades. So, start with adjusting the mower deck and making sure it’s perfectly level. If that doesn’t fix the problem, then inspect the blades.

A bent blade can lead to this sort of problem, and if your blade is damaged, you need to replace it. However, if the problem still persists, then you might need to replace the deck.

2. Streaking

Another thing that many people complain about with their Cub Cadet lawnmower is its streaking issue. What that means is the lawnmower leaves strips of uncut grass between passes. Needless to say, that means you need to make the whole pass again to get the uncut section.

While streaking is mainly attributed to operator error, dull blades can also be a major culprit here. So, if you’re sure that you are not causing the problem, check the blade. If their blades are dull, you need to sharpen them. However, if sharpening the blade doesn’t fix it, you need to replace them.

3. Scalping Lawn

If the lawnmower you are using scalps the lawn while it’s supposed to be trimming the grass, then that never feels good as a homeowner. It makes your entire lawn look ugly, and with a Cub Cadet lawnmower, this is not acceptable.

Typically, lawn scalping occurs when the grass is not hydrated, or the blades are damaged. Improper deck adjustment can also cause scalping issues to occur in some cases. I would recommend hydrating the lawn grass and letting it dry up for a few days first.

After that, try cutting the lawn again. If you still face the scalping issue, then you need to check the blades and resharpen them. You might also need to readjust the deck height.

4. Uneven Cutting

If you suddenly notice that your lawnmower is making uneven cuts when you are trimming the grass, then that’s usually related to an adjustment issue in the mower deck. Don’t worry, the problem is fixable, but you need to pinpoint the exact cause behind the problem.

Before making any adjustments to the deck, make sure the blades are in perfect working condition. If the blades are dull or damaged, make sure you replace them right away. Also, check the tire pressure and inflate the tires if needed. If the problem is still there, then you need to manually adjust the deck height.

5. Vibration in the Deck

Cub Cadet lawnmowers typically come with anti-vibration features to reduce the vibration in your deck as much as possible so that it doesn’t distract you when you are using your vehicle.

But sometimes, people complain that the mower deck vibrates excessively, along with hearing a loud rattling sound in the deck. Well, as it turns out, this is a simple case of loose blades or stuck pebbles inside the mower deck.

And while it might sound scary, fixing the problem is pretty easy. Simply turn your mower off and check the blade area for any loose parts. Tighten the blades. If the issue still comes up, then check for any stone pieces trapped inside the deck.

Final Thoughts

Cub Cadet mowers are some of the finest ones available on the market these days. And as long as you treat the lawnmower right, it should offer an excellent cutting experience whenever you are using it to mow your lawn.

With regular use, though, the deck in these vehicles can fall out of alignment. This will inevitably lead to some weird and frustrating issues. But now that you know what to do to tackle these issues, you should be able to fix the problem without any hassle.

I hope my article on Cub Cadet mower deck problems could help you learn a thing or two about fixing the deck in your lawnmower. Good luck!

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