9 Common Bad Boy Mowers Problems [Incl. Solutions!]

bad boy mower problems

It’s no secret that Bad Boy mowers are some of the most popular on the market. However, they’re not without their problems.

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the common Bad Bboy mower problems and how to fix them.

Some of the most common Bad Boy mowers problems are transaxle issues, problems with the mower starting, and the mower deck vibrating too much.

Bad Boy has been a leading brand in lawn care equipment for years, and with good reason – their products are top-of-the-line. But even the best machines can have issues from time to time. If you’re having trouble with your Bad Boy mower, don’t worry – we’ll help you troubleshoot it!

Our quick list of common Bad Boy Mower problems:

  • Mower not starting
  • Transaxle issues
  • Pulling left or right
  • Mower cutting out
  • Hydrostatic transmission problems
  • Excessive vibrating
  • Uneven cutting
  • Too much smoke
  • Weak spindle

Let’s get into the article!

9 Common Bad Boy Mowers Problems

Bad Boy Mower Not Starting

If your bad boy mower won’t start, the first thing you should check is the battery. Make sure it’s properly charged and installed. If the battery seems fine, then check the spark plug to see if it needs to be replaced.

The battery and spark plugs should always be the first check if any of your bad boy mowers won’t start; they’re easy to replace and usually the first elements to go.

When it comes to a bad boy mower specifically, on a few occasions, I’ve seen both faulty safety switches and ignition switches as the problem. These switches are there as a safety measure, hence not allowing the engine to start.

You’ll need to test these individually and buy replacement parts should they turn out to be the issue.

Don’t forget to make sure you’ve got fuel in the tank; it’s never nice being that guy that lugs their mower all the way into the repair shop when it’s a simple refueling fix!

Transaxle Issues

One of the most appealing features of a Bad Boy mower is the suspension mechanism; they’ve done an excellent job, it’s a smooth ride, and you usually get a great, even cut even on slopes; they’ve nailed it.

There is a but coming, though; for all their great work, Bad Boy mowers have been known to have transaxle and hydraulic issues, which do take away from that smooth ride!

To diagnose, there are two questions to ask:

Is the hydraulic leaking fluid?

Is the charge pump broken?

If you’re answering yes to either of those questions, you’ve got an issue. To block the leaking fluid, you’ll need to order a new seal kit from Bad Boy. If it looks more like a severe problem than changing a seal, I’d recommend getting a mechanic on the case.

Follow these steps to change the hydraulic filter and oil:

1. Make sure the bad boy mower is turned off, and the battery is disconnected.

2. Remove the cover of the hydraulic filter.

3. Clean the surface around the hydraulic filter.

4. Remove the hydraulic filter and discard it.

5. Install a new hydraulic filter.

6. Apply a light coat of oil to the gasket on the new hydraulic filter.

7. Install the new hydraulic filter and replace the cover.

Bad Boy Mower Pulling Left or Right

Zero-turn mowers are complex machines, and they can be prone to pulling too much in one direction. This can be down to poor build quality or faulty electrics; when it comes to Bad Boy mowers, it’s usually a symptom of steering situations, likely a defective damper.

It’s actually a really common issue on the Bad Boy ZT, specifically the 50-inch deck model.

Bad Boy has redesigned its dampers to be more durable, you need to order a kit from them and fit it. The dampers are under the steering arm, which is relatively easy to get to.

Don’t forget to make sure the tire pressures are all equal; that can also be a reason your mower is pulling one way more than the other. The tire pressure for bad boy mowers should be set at 10-12 psi.

Intermittent Cutting Out

If you find your bad boy mower cutting out intermittently, it’s likely an issue with the fuel filter or carburetor.

A lot of the time, it can be something as simple as dirt in the gas tank, which is easily fixed by draining the tank and refilling it with fresh gasoline. If that doesn’t fix it, then it’s time to check the fuel filter.

The fuel filter is usually located under the gas tank, and it’s a pretty easy replacement. Make sure you get the right size for your bad boy mower model.

Airflow is critical for a mower to run efficiently; if any of the filters get blocked up with debris, you’re going to have problems. Regular maintenance and cleaning is an important part of keeping your mower in running condition.

Always ensure you’re putting the correct fuel in your mowers gas tank. Fuel quality does matter as fuel deteriorates over time, leading to engine issues and clogging. One of my favorite products, SeaFoam, is great for stabilizing fuel if you’re having an issue.

If your mower is getting hot before it cuts out, check the cooling fins. They are important for the airflow on your mower; if the cooling fins or fans aren’t doing their job, the mower will shut off mid-mow.

Poor Hydrostatic Transmission

The hydrostatic transmission is what gives bad Boy mowers their zero-turn capability, and while it’s a great feature, it can also be the source of a lot of problems.

If you’re having trouble with your bad boy mower not moving or moving very slowly, it could be an issue with the hydrostatic transmission.

There are a few things you can check yourself, such as the transmission fluid level and the hydrostatic filter. If those look good, then it’s likely a problem with the hydrostatic pump or motor, and you’ll need to take it to a mechanic.

If the hydrostatic transmission is feeling weak, that can be a symptom of either the belt, pulley, or both needing to be replaced. The belt and pulley enable the drive belt to work; if the tension gets removed from any element of the system, you’ve got problems.

Double-check your hydraulic oil level, if the oil level drops too low, it won’t be able to lubricate the system efficiently. This causes too much tension and grinding, which inevitably leads to something breaking.

Excessive Vibrating From Mower Deck

Another problem that plagues many bad boy mowers is an unacceptable level of vibration from the mower deck.

The most likely reason for this is a bent spindle, which can be caused by hitting something while mowing. It’s not a huge deal to replace a bent spindle, but it is something you need to do to fix the problem.

Another potential cause of excessive vibrations is an unbalanced mower deck. This is easily fixed by removing the deck and reattaching it, making sure everything is level and tight.

Last but not least, make sure all the blades are attached correctly and are the same size. If they aren’t, it will throw off the balance of the mower deck and lead to vibrations.

Remember, not every problem is challenging to fix, luckily! The mower deck can be as straightforward as readjusting the belt and pulley, checking all the screws and bolts are secure, ensure the blades are balanced – and you should be good to go!

Uneven Cutting

This is a problem that bad boy mowers are notorious for, and it’s usually due to one of two things.

The first thing to check is the mower deck itself. If it’s not level, then you’re going to get uneven cuts. The mower deck can be easily adjusted by loosening the bolts and moving it into the correct position.

The second thing that can cause uneven cuts is the blade. If the blade is damaged, bent or not sharp enough, then it’s not going to cut evenly. Blades are easy enough to replace, and you can usually find a good deal on a set of bad boy mower blades online.

Remember to check your tire pressure! If your tires aren’t level, your cut won’t be either.

Smoke Coming From the Exhaust

This is usually nothing to worry about, as it’s just unburned fuel burning off. However, if the smoke is excessive, it could be a sign of something more serious, such as a bad piston ring or valve seal.

If Bad Boy mowers smoke too much, it can also be clogged air filters, these mowers are serious machines, and all sorts of debris get thrown up into the mower on a good run; always check your filters.

Finally, excessive smoke can also be down to oil. If there’s too much oil in your mower, the pressure can build and cause oil to leak into the cylinder and crankcase, to fix this you need to drain the oil and get down to the recommended oil level.

Annoyingly, too much smoke can be down to a low oil level! Low oil means a low level of lubrication, which means more friction, heat, and therefore smoke! If your oil level looks too low, top it up!

If you see excessive smoke and you’ve checked everything, it’s best to take it to a mechanic and have them take a look.

Spindle Issues

The final bad boy mower problem on our list is an issue with the spindle.

The spindle is what the blade attaches to, and if it’s bent or damaged, it can cause a whole host of problems. First, and most obviously, it will lead to uneven cuts. Second, it can cause the blade to wobble, which is dangerous.

Third, a damaged spindle can cause the mower deck to vibrate excessively. And last, but not least, it can damage the blade itself.

The best way to fix a bent or damaged spindle is to replace it. Also, check the spindle gait and ensure the coils attached to it look good; if any of these get damaged, they can ripple down to the spindle.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How long is the warranty on a Bad Boy mower?

The warranty on a Bad Boy mower is two years for residential use and one year for commercial use.

Why does my Badboy Mower cut unevenly?

There are a few reasons why your Badboy mower might be cutting unevenly. It could be that the blade is dull or damaged, the deck isn’t level, or there’s something blocking the deck.

What company makes Bad Boy Mowers?

Bad Boy Mowers is a privately-owned company based in Batesville, Arkansas.


The majority of bad boy mowers reviews are positive, with users praising the machine’s power, durability, and easy-to-use features.

However, there are a few complaints about bad boy mower problems with uneven cutting and smoke coming from the exhaust.

In my opinion, I’ve had a lot of experience with bad boy mowers, and apart from a few issues, they’re amazing mowers.