Help! My Treadmill Turns On… But the Belt Won’t Move

Help! My Treadmill Turns On… But the Belt Won’t Move (Last Updated On: August 31, 2022)

Precor Treadmill ReviewA dreaded thing has happened.

You stepped on your treadmill to complete your workout, the treadmill turns on, you pop in your headphones, but wait… The belt won’t move.

A treadmill is a machine, and any device can break down. Some repairs need a professional’s expertise.

However, some simple ones, like fixing a treadmill belt that won’t move, can usually be fixed in a few quick steps. In this blog, we share all the information to repair the belt of a treadmill that won’t move.

Reasons Why a Treadmill Belt Will Not Move When the Power is Turned On

There could be several reasons for your treadmill belt not to move, although the treadmill’s power cable connects to outlet, and the switch is on.

However, the issue is generally not major and you can rectify it by using this post as a guide. 

Tip: Have your treadmill owner’s manual handy for repairing a treadmill belt that won’t move.

Is Your Treadmill Belt Squeaking?

Typically, a treadmill gives warning signs before it stops working altogether (although, sudden malfunctions can happen). The most common red flag is an overly squeaky belt while you’re exercising. Has your treadmill’s belt begun to make squeaky noises? If so, it needs your immediate attention.

A squeaky belt indicates the excess friction caused by the lack of lubrication or the belt being too tight. It wears, overstretches and damages the belt, so you need to troubleshoot it immediately.

Troubleshoot by:

  • Lubricating the belt as per the user manual instructions.
  • Loosen the belt (see instructions below).
  • If the damage is extensive, you may need to replace the belt.

Reason #1: The Belt Isn’t Lubricated

The first and most common reason a treadmill belt gets stuck is the lack of lubrication. For the treadmill belt to operate smoothly, it has to be well-lubricated. 

There are many different types of treadmill lubricants available. The treadmill manufacturer typically specifies which type of lubricant that you should use on your treadmill in the user manual. Be sure to only to use the ones specified by the manufacturer. Some manufacturers, such as NordicTrack, sell their own treadmill maintenance kit that includes the preferred lubricant.

Apply the lubricant to the treadmill parts manually. The easiest method for applying lubricant to the belt is to insert it toward the middle of the treadmill belt, switch on the treadmill’s power, and walk slowly to get the belt to move. You only need to walk two-three minutes as it will evenly distribute the lubricant all over the belt area of the treadmill.

Reasons #2: The Belt is Too Tight

A treadmill belt that is a bit too strains the treadmill, and causes extra tension. An overly tight treadmill belt does not allow the motor to rotate the belt as it should. 

So, how do you test if a treadmill belt is too tight? 

When you raise the belt at the edge of the treadmill, it should rise to a minimum of two to three inches above the walking or running deck. If it doesn’t, the belt is too tight, and you will need to loosen it until you can lift it to that level. 

Here is how to loosen a treadmill belt:

  • Switch the treadmill off and remove the power cable from the electric socket whenever you work in or around the electric components of the treadmill.
  • Check the user manual for instructions to adjust the treadmill’s belt.
  • Look for the hex screws generally found at the rear end of the treadmill.
  • Use an Allen Wrench to turn them gently, and keep checking if the treadmill belt is adjusted right by lifting the belt at the sides. 
  • Connect the treadmill and switch it on to check if the belt is running. 

Reason #3: The Weight Limit is Maxed Out

The manufacturer generally sets a maximum weight specification for the treadmill. If your weight exceeds the maximum weight specification of the exercise machine; the belt could get stuck and refuse to move, or stop suddenly as you are working out. In this case, the only solution to this problem would be to replace it with one that has a higher weight limit. 

Reason #4: The Treadmill Belt is Out of Alignment

When you use your treadmill frequently, the belt can shift to the left or right. If the belt shifts too much, it can become misaligned and cause the belt to stop moving. You can troubleshoot by re-aligning your treadmill’s belt, and here’s how you can do it.

how to align a treadmill beltHow to Align a Treadmill Belt

  • Switch off and disconnect the treadmill from the electric supply.
  • Stand behind the treadmill and look at the treadmill’s belt to check the direction of the misalignment.
  • Use the user manual to locate the rear roller adjustment bolts. 
  • The user manual will also indicate the two bolts which you need to turn to re-align the treadmill’s belt.
  • Use an Allen wrench to do likewise. 
  • When you have re-aligned the belt, switch on the gadget and run it to see if the belt is still stuck. 

Reason #5: Faulty Connection

The console wire connects the primary wire and the motor board. You will find it inside the treadmill. The console wire can snap, entangle, pinch or twist, making the belt stop. Check to ensure the two wires are securely connected. It is better to replace the pinched or twisted console wire to avoid treadmill breakdowns in the future. 


    The tips in this post don’t qualify as repairs, for they are troubleshooting processes that you can run through to try and get your treadmill functioning properly again. If these adjustments don’t solve your problems and your treadmill’s belt continues to stick and not function properly, there is probably a more serious issue at hand.

    A treadmill has many other parts that can break down and cause the belt to stop moving. If you’re not able to resolve the issue on your own, it’s best to contact the treadmill manufacturer to seek out help. If your treadmill is still covered under the warranty, the manufacturer will likely get the treadmill fixed for you at no cost. If you do not have a warranty on your machine from the manufacturer, you may want to consider checking out a local fitness equipment repair store to have a professional look at it and diagnosis your issue.

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