A treadmill is a pricey investment. Therefore, after buying one, you want to ensure that you get the best value for your money. Of course, this means knowing how to set it just right, how to get the best out of it and much more. Among the main components of a treadmill is the belt. It should be set just right, not too loose and not too tight.
You are watching: How tight should a treadmill belt be
So, how tight should a treadmill belt be? To know whether the belt is at the right tightness level, you need to lift it up a bit at the edge of the treadmill in the center of the deck. If it is tight enough, it should be able to lift up by 3 to 4 inches. If it lifts lower than 3 inches, it is too tight and if it lifts higher than 4 inches, it is too loose.
Checking the tightness of the treadmill belt is not a one-off thing. You need to keep checking it from time to time. If it needs to be tightened up or loosened some, you can do it easily without help. In the upcoming sections, you will see how to do that.
If you are reading about a treadmill for the first time, you may not know all of its parts. So what is the treadmill belt?
First, a treadmill is the apparatus that helps you walk while it remains stationary. Fancy that! But it has a moving part, which is the belt. The standard size of a treadmill belt is 48 inches long by 18 inches wide. However, there are bigger sizes especially for taller people. If you are over 6 feet tall, you would need a treadmill with a belt that is 54 inches long.
The treadmill belt moves backwards. You can set the speed on the console. Now, all you have to do is match its speed by walking or running. Therefore you run towards the front while the belt moves towards the back. You are running, covering miles but you are not really moving.
Now that we have seen how to test the tightness of the treadmill belt and how tight should a treadmill belt be, we shall be looking at how to tighten treadmill belt if you discover that it is too loose.
Treadmill belt adjustment is not too hard. First, check on both parts of the deck at the rear. There, you will see two bolts, which control the tightness of the belt.
You can also check in the package that the treadmill came with. Most manufacturers supply their treadmills with an Allen wrench for tightening the treadmill belt tension.
It is very simple. However, you might also want to know how to center a treadmill belt if you find that it is slipping to the left or right.
First, turn the machine off and then unplug it from the power source. Now, take the Allen wrench and turn one bolt at least a quarter way in the clockwise direction. You can then go to the bolt on the other side and tighten it the same way. It is very important that you tighten the two to the same tension at the same time.
As you tighten the treadmill walking belt one bolt at a time, keep checking the looseness of the belt. You do not want to tighten it too much at the same time. When you have the right treadmill belt tension, ensure that when you lift it off the edge at the center of the deck, it is between 3 and 4 inches.
You can keep measuring the lift off gap with a small ruler. If it is still too loose, you can keep tightening the bolts one at a time, with just a quarter of a turn in the clockwise direction.
If the belt is too loose, it keeps on slipping as you walk or jog on it. Therefore, you can plug it back in, turn it on and set the treadmill belt speed at 3 mph. Walk on it and if it slips, you will know that it needs more adjustment. Keep adjusting until it stops slipping.
If you over-tighten the belt, you may need to loosen it a bit. The process is simple. Test for tightness and if the slack is less than 3 inches, it is too tight.
Turn off the treadmill, unplug from power source and then start loosening one bolt at a time, a quarter turn only in the anticlockwise direction. Work on both bolts one turn at a time so that you do not loosen it too much. Keep checking the slack, measuring with a small ruler until you get a slack of 3 to 4 inches.
That is it for how tight should a treadmill belt be. You have also seen how to test for slackness in your treadmill belt.
A loose belt is dangerous. It slips and it gets stuck. This is risky because you can also slip and fall. When the belt is not tightened just right, it could cause bearing and motor issues.