How to Lubricate a Treadmill Belt: Step-by-Step
Starting with routine belt lubrication, maintaining your treadmill is simpler than you might imagine.
A personal treadmill is unrivaled in terms of convenience and safety. Although it may not be the most interesting form of exercise, it gives you confidence knowing that you can run anywhere, day or night, in a warm, dry, and secure environment. Of course, that assumes it’s operating properly. Nothing is more annoying than stepping onto your treadmill only to discover that it isn’t functioning properly or, worse, not at all.
To ensure that it is operating correctly and to extend its lifespan, a treadmill needs regular maintenance. One of the easiest ways you can (yes, I mean you can do this!) Keep up with routine maintenance is by lubricating your treadmill belt. You can find all the information you require here.
What is a Treadmill Belt?
It is a simple and easy task to lubricate your belt, but it helps to comprehend the basic terms and anatomy related to treadmills. The treadmill belt, also referred to as a running or walking belt, is a ring of rubber that freely encircles two rollers on either end of the treadmill and the deck of the stationary treadmill. The actual surface that moves when you run is the belt. The front roller, also referred to as the drive roller, rotates when the treadmill is turned on. This rotated front roller is what carries the belt over the deck and rear roller.
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Why You Should Lubricate Your Treadmill Belt
Every time you step on the treadmill belt, it presses against the walking deck and creates friction between the belt and the deck, explains Jon Fasulo, owner of TreadmillFixation, a full-service treadmill repair company based in the Philadelphia area. “The more friction you have, the harder the motor is going to have to work, which can cause premature failure to the motor and motor controller,” explains Lubrication serves as a buffer to lessen friction between the deck and the belt and to reduce unnecessary stress on the motor and controller.
You should read the owner’s or service manual first to learn the manufacturer’s recommendations, suggests Scott Eastman, senior test lab manager at Nautilus. You can usually find instructions in the manuals on how often and how to lubricate your treadmill. Fasulo concurs with Eastman’s advice to read the owner’s manual first and adds that some premium home and business brands, including NordicTrack, Spirit, Precor, and Life Fitness, have maintenance-free belts that do not require lubrication. He warns, “If you ignore their recommendations, some manufacturers might threaten to revoke warranties.”
What to Use to Lubricate the Treadmill
It’s fairly easy to lubricate a treadmill. But as with most projects, you should get ready before you begin using a lubricant. More importantly, you require the top treadmill lubricant.
Fortunately, some manufacturers have lubricants created especially for their treadmill models. A treadmill from such manufacturers might even come with some lubricant, which is even better. This treadmill is suggested for use with your device in that scenario. On a related note, you can see if the manufacturer has recommended a specific treadmill lubricant for their treadmills by consulting the user manual. This is important because using a treadmill oil that the manufacturer does not recommend could void the warranty.
What if your machine didn’t come with a treadmill lubricant? Thankfully, you can use a variety of other treadmill lubricants.
First, the majority of treadmill producers advise using lubricants that are entirely silicone-based. There are two types of silicone lubricants specifically made for treadmill running belts. The two types of silicone are liquid and spray.
Silicone spray, as its name suggests, is applied easily and is available in a spray can. In addition, all you have to do is take off the cap and connect the tube or can to the nozzle. The center and underside of your treadmill belt should then be sprayed with lubricant.
On the other hand, liquid silicone is readily available. As long as you have a spray can, it is applied in the same manner as silicone sprays for treadmills.
Treadmill waxing, which uses wax bars or powdered wax, is another option for treadmill lubricant. The only challenge with this approach is that you’ve to loosen the back roller of the treadmill belt before you lubricate it. After that, scatter powdered wax between the treadmill’s walking belt and deck. Tighten it and run the belt at a slow speed while doing this on both sides of the running belt. Warm up the treadmill for about 15 minutes before using the wax bar. Afterward, proceed as you would to apply wax powder.
There are some products you ought to completely avoid when selecting a treadmill lubricant. These products include petroleum-based lubricants, WD-40, and Vaseline. Such oils can deteriorate the treadmill’s parts or harm the running belt. Furthermore, petroleum-based lubricants improve the treadmill’s overall performance rather than lowering friction between the deck and the belt. This will eventually damage the treadmill and affect its efficiency.Although treadmill lubricant is the most essential product for this project, it’s not the only thing you need. Instead, you’ll need other items such as;
- Spray bottle
- Some hand wipes
- A rag/ towel
- A screwdriver
Once you’ve gathered all the required materials and equipment, lubricate your treadmill!
Knowing When You Should Lubricate Your Treadmill Belt
You can work toward a comfortable workout by routinely lubricating your treadmill. The running mat and the motor are both protected above all from accelerated deterioration. If you use the device regularly, you should lubricate it every 130 miles, or every three months. If you use your treadmill more frequently, check more frequently to see if maintenance is required. Don’t wait until you hear squeaking or another sound that would suggest unwelcome friction.
To check, loosen the belt, of course. As a necessary precaution before performing any sort of maintenance work, turn off the treadmill first. If necessary, use a screwdriver or an Allen wrench to loosen a bolt. For comprehensive instructions, refer to your user’s model.
Lift the treadmill belt up a little and place your hand underneath it after you’ve loosened it. If the interior surface is dry and doesn’t appear to have an oil coating, lubrication is necessary. But there’s no need to lubricate if you take your hand off and find some oil on it.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Lubricating a Treadmill Belt
Don’t worry if you haven’t lubricated your treadmill in three months or longer or if you discover that it needs more oil. The procedure is easy. You can complete it on your own.
- Step 1: Find a treadmill lubricant that is suitable and is not silicone-based. Contacting customer service will help you find this information, and they will be happy to do so. Use caution and avoid using grease or oil that has been produced for another use. The treadmill could get clogged or even get hurt if this happens.
- Step 2: Adjust the belt and unplug your device as described above.
- Step 3: Spray the lubricant underneath the belt after a slight lift. It should take about 3–5 applications on each side.
- Step 4: After lowering the belt, turn it on for 5 to 6 minutes at a slow speed (roughly 3 mph, the average walking speed). This ought to be enough to evenly distribute the lubricant across the belt’s inner surface.
- Step 5: Reconnect the treadmill to the power source and wipe any extra lubricant from the belt’s edges with a soft cloth.
- Step 6: Plug the treadmill in after tightening the belt once more. Now you can use your treadmill with no further delay. I’ll see you for the next tune-up in a few months.
Make Sure Your Belt Stays Tight
Always maintain a tight belt tension on the treadmill. But over time, it might become looser. You’ll need to tighten it in the following situations:
- Check to see if any bolts, as well as the belt, need to be tightened after 20 hours of treadmill use.
- after a period of continuous use.
- When you hear any strange noises, the treadmill skips, giving you jolts instead of the usual smooth motion, or the motor overheats, or whenever you notice any other abnormal behavior.
- IF YOU CAN LIFT THE RUNNING MATS BY MORE THAN OR EITHER SIDE 1-2 INCHES.
How Often to Lubricate Treadmill Belt
It is advised by well-known treadmill manufacturers to lubricate machines after every three months, or roughly 40 hours of use. According to how frequently the machine is used, this general advice might change. Because they are used for longer hours each week, walking treadmills, for instance, require lubrication more frequently than running treadmills. Similar to how compact/domestic treadmill models might need more frequent lubrication, heavy-duty treadmill models might too.
In conclusion, the amount of use your treadmill receives will determine how often you lubricate it. It’s interesting that some modern treadmills display a warning on their monitor that they need to be lubricated.
Conclusion: Lubricate Your Treadmill Isn’t Complicated
As you can see, maintaining your treadmill isn’t complicated. But keep in mind that this upkeep is necessary to increase the lifespan of your device. So consider doing it frequently.
It is obviously doing everything it can to look after you, so look after it!
Can You Use WD-40 to Lubricate a Treadmill?
To lift the treadmill belt and apply the lubricant, find out how to loosen it in the manufacturer’s instruction manual (available in hard copy or online). Use WD-40 Specialist Silicone or the manufacturer recommended lubricant and spray underneath the belt as you lift, repeating the process on both sides of the machine.
How Long Do Treadmill Belts Last?
How Long Do Treadmill Belts Last?
1-ply treadmill belts last for about 300 to 500 hours, depending on how they’re maintained. For a typical treadmill user, this translates to roughly 3 to 5 years. 2-ply belts, on the other hand, last for about 5 to 10 years.
What Happens If You Don’t Lubricate a Treadmill?
The costs of not keeping your treadmill properly lubricated can be high. Too much friction can lead to motor or controller board burnout, premature degradation of the treadmill belt and/or delamination of the board, and dramatically higher energy consumption.