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LX266 still acting weird after traction drive belt replacement

Dave I have an LX266 lawn tractor (about 5 yrs old) with hydraulic transmission. A few weeks ago, it was acting like traction drive belt was slipping. I bought a new belt and replaced as per instructions in shop manual. There is no adjustment. Instead there is a pulley tensioning assembly that is attached to a spring and provides tension on the belt.
Today, when I used the tractor for the first time, the same thing happened. It runs great for about an hour. Then, I started noticing if I am going forward at full speed and let my foot off the gas, it seems like the belt slips until something "catches up" then the tractor starts to jerkily move again. In reverse, it is even worse. I checked all the pulleys when i took the old belt off and everything looked fine. I can't imagine the heavy tensioning spring is worn out.
I looked at the hydraulic oil with the tractor cold, and it is right in the middle between full and add lines. Could this be the issue? I would think the oil would expand when the trctor heated up, but could this possibly be it? Thanks.

Dale G. Basgall Remove the e clip from the transmission drive pulley. Remove the pulley and look at the inside bore of the pulley it has splines that could be causing the problem. I have ran into this many times, if the splines are damaged then simply purchase a new pulley from your dealer. If not then you should start looking at replacement of the transaxle assembly they are not serviceable. Most likely I run into the pulley problem on those instead of the transaxle.
Dave Dale,
Would that happen when the tractor gets hot only? (Only happens after over an hour of mowing).

Dave The tractor went to John Deere ($125 pickup charge). They had it for several days and ran it for over 1.5 hrs on rollers to simulate movement. Then they took it outside to mow. Two mechanics could not get it to reproduce the slipping feeling.
I checked the pulley on the transmission, and the splines were fine. Has anyone run into this issue? The tech said they haven't seen this problem before.



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