Common Problems With Snapper Riding Lawnmowers

Updated February 21, 2017

Snapper was founded after World War II by William Smith and soon revolutionised lawn maintenance with its patented lawnmowers. The company was purchased in 2004 by Briggs & Stratton and currently produces six different riding lawnmower models. The Snapper riding lawnmower manuals list different problems with the mower and how to correct them. The troubleshooting section of each manual lists the most common problems with these mowers.


One of the most common problems with a Snapper riding lawnmower is the belt slipping. The blades quit turning and cutting the lawn when the mower deck is engaged. A belt is laced through a series of pulleys located on top of the mower deck and connected to the PTO drive of the mower engine. Once the belt becomes worn or stretched, it does not place enough tension on the pulleys to turn the mower blades. Another common cause of the belt slipping is if the belt is oily or grease has got onto the belt, causing it to slip. At times the idler pulley may become frozen, causing the drive belt to slip. The pulley must be removed, cleaned and lubricated to correct this problem.


One problem with Snapper riding lawnmowers is the brake not hold or slipping. When this happens, the internal brake pads are worn and need to be replaced. Riding the brake, while mowing the lawn, will cause the brake pads to prematurely wear; and when the brake is engaged, it will not hold the lawnmower in place or stop it at all.


Another common problem with the Snapper riding lawnmower is steering problems. A Snapper mower that becomes hard to steer is generally due to improper tire inflation. The tires will either have too much or too little air, making the lawnmower hard to turn. The steering linkage can be loose and cause steering problems, or the spindle bearing under the front of the mower requires lubrication.

Mower Deck and Blades

The mower deck on the Snapper riding lawnmower may experience several problems. If the mower is not cutting the lawn evenly, the mower deck needs to be levelled. The mower deck on the Snapper mower can be adjusted on either side to correct this problem. If the mower is not cutting the grass smoothly, you will need to have the blades sharpened.


A common complaint for Snapper riding lawnmowers is not starting up when the ignition is engaged. Check the PTO lever to see if it is engaged; the mower will not start if the PTO is pushed in the "On" position. No gas in the gas tank is another cause of the mower not starting. Other common reasons for a mower not starting are clogged fuel or air filters. The fuel filter must be replaced to correct this problem, and the air filter must be removed, cleaned and reinstalled.

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About the Author

Mitchell Brock has been writing since 1980. His work includes media relations and copywriting technical manuals for Johnson & Johnson, HSBC, FOX and Phillip Morris. Brock graduated from the University of Southern California in 1980, earning a Bachelor of Arts in English.