Sears 12.5HP 38" Lawn Tractor Shifting Problems


Old 08-09-07, 09:51 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2007
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Sears 12.5HP 38" Lawn Tractor Shifting Problems


When I bought my house, I inherited a mid-'90s Sears Craftsman 38" 5-speed lawn tractor (12.5Hp). It has worked well for the past few years, though lately I have had difficulty in leaving various gears for others. It seems that something is not releasing the shifting lever when I want to go, for example, from 1st gear to 3rd gear. I affects all gears.

Are there any adjustments that can be made on this type of mower to the shifting linkage to ease my shifting woes. Please note that I am depressing the clutch/brake all the way, and the tractor does stop when I do this (brakes seem fine). Any pointers here?

Thanks in advance,

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Old 08-10-07, 04:12 AM
puey61's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Upstate New York
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There is nothing externally that you can adjust for a hard shifting issue except to be sure the trans belt is coming to a hault when you depress the clutch pedal. Even if it isn't you should still be able to shift the tranny without much effort since these are basically shift-on-the-fly tranny's. You can check for any debris buildup at the point where the shifter shaft enters the trans (should be the left front of the tranny) or any point at the shifter pivot points and lube such points. I'll say you have a tranny that has an internal issue, most likely with the shift keys. Either the keys are worn or there is a lack of grease at this point in the trans.
Old 08-20-07, 06:32 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2007
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Sears 12.5HP 38" Lawn Tractor Shifting Problems

Thanks for the reply,

Any idea what type of lube this transmission takes? 80W90? Hypoid grease?
I cannot recall actually seeing any filler locations, but I will take a more thorough look later this week....

Old 08-20-07, 09:17 PM
cheese's Avatar
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I use "00" grease, and ther is no place to fill it. You have to open the tranny up to fill it with grease, which I do anytime I have to open one to repair it. Check the belt. I've seen the belts get worn and flip over where the backside of the belt is riding in the tranny pulley, which causes it to bind just enough to make the gear selector hang a little at times between gears.

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