Treadmill Basics

Taking Care of the Tread Belt in Your Treadmill

A treadmill is an investment that pays off in terms of good health. To ensure that it provides value for money, it is imperative that the machine should be long lasting and durable. One of the ways to enhance its performance and life is to ensure that it is properly maintained.

After the motor, the tread belt is the most important component of a treadmill. To ensure the smooth working of the treadmill and its tread belt, it is important that the belt must be properly looked. Regularly adjusting the tread belt helps to make sure that it is neither too tight nor too loose.

The belt may slightly stretch over a period of time and may thus need to be tightened periodically. The treadmill belt may be adjusted as a part of the machine’s routine maintenance schedule. Adjusting the tread belt on a monthly basis is recommended.

Adjusting the belt helps to reduce the burden on the belt. Proper tracking keeps the rear and the front rollers in parallel.

Many treadmills provide easy accessibility to belt tracking. The adjustment screws are usually situated at the rear of the machine. Before making any adjustments, it is better to read the user manual. The user manual has many useful tips for proper treadmill maintenance. Reading and following these tips promotes the life and performance of the treadmill. 

Many treadmill producers provide an Allen wrench at the time of selling the treadmill. In case, the manufacturer has not provided it, one may use an appropriate wrench.

One must check the tension of the belt. If it has the right level of tension, it should be easily lifted from 2” to 3” from each side of the walking surface. If the belt slips, one should turn both rear roller adjustment bolts and turn them a quarter clockwise. Once the bolts have been adjusted, one must continue repeating this process, until the belt stops slipping.

If the belt moves towards the left, the left roller adjustment bolt should be turned a counter clockwise by a quarter. This procedure must be repeated until the belt stops moving towards left side. In case, the belt slips towards the right, the same procedure should be followed for the roller adjustment bolt for the right side.

If the belt is in the center and operating smoothly, then no adjustments are required.

While making adjustments, the user should exercise caution about a few points. Before making any adjustments, the key must be removed and the machine unplugged. Reading the user manual can also provide useful information about machine maintenance.

Each side should not be turned more than a quarter turn at a time since usually minor adjustments are required. The user must be careful not to over-tighten the belt.

These tips, usually provided in the manufacturer’s handbook, help to guide the user through the process of belt tracking and adjustment. These points must be cautiously observed because adjusting the tread belt properly helps to ensure long lasting and steady treadmill performance.