How to Engage Lawn Mower Blades on a John Deere

There are different types of drive systems for John Deere lawn mowers. The first, and most common, is a mechanical system--a pulley that slides into position by a lever, which creates tension on the mower deck belt and causes the blades to turn. The second is an electrical system; an electric brake clutch is turned on by a switch that then sends a 12-volt current to the clutch, which enables a brake that has a pulley below it. The pulley engages the mower drive belt causing the blades to turn.

Mechanical Blade Engagement

Step 1

Turn the key to the "on" position, advance the throttle to half speed and allow the engine to warm up for 2 minutes.

Step 2

Lower the mower to the desired cutting height. Check for any debris around the mower.

Step 3

Engage the mower blades; push the lever to the right of the steering wheel all the way forward.

Electric Blade Engagement

Step 4

Turn the key to the "on" position, advance the throttle to half speed and allow the engine to warm up for 2 minutes.

Step 5

Lower the mower to the desired cutting height. Check for any debris around the mower.

Step 6

Engage the mower blades; pull up on the yellow "PTO" switch to the right of the steering wheel.