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How to: Easily center any treadmill belt yourself

An off-center treadmill belt increases the risk of jerking or slipping when working out. If not corrected, it can deliver inconsistent speeds and wear other components. So, how do you center treadmill belt? On almost all treadmills, you’ll find some space between the footy rails and the belt. This is the area you should focus on. You can fix the problem yourself.

How to know if you need to center your treadmill‘s belt

Some common indicators are grinding sounds, uneven wear, uneven deck clearance, and drifting of the treadmill belt.

Step-by-step guide to center treadmill belt

1. Gather the tools

You will need an alen wrench or hex key, screwdriver, measuring tape, and a cleaning brush.

2. Switch the power off

Unplug the treadmill from the electrical outlet.

3. Locate the roller bolts

Roller adjustment bolts are embedded on the foot rails (either side of the belt) to control tension and alignment. Simply, rotate the belt and observe the edges of the deck. If it touches either side, it’s misaligned.

4. Adjust the bolts

The bolts you need to adjust will depend on the treadmill brand. If the belt veers towards the right, you ought to tighten the bolts on the left side. Do the opposite if it leans on the left side.

diagram of how to center a treadmill belt

5. Make small adjustments

Adjust one-quarter turn at a time and let the belt run slowly for a few minutes. If it’s not straight and centered, move to the other side. Repeat the process and give it a chance to re-center itself.

diagram on how to center a treadmill belt using alen wrench

A few adjustments should do the trick – don’t overdo it. If in doubt, walk on the treadmill at varying speeds. When the belt is centered, it won’t make unusual noises.

How long does it take to center a treadmill belt?

The required time to center the treadmill belt is around 30-45 minutes. This will depend on the condition of the belt, treadmill type, and level of experience.

How to prevent belt slipping in the future


You should regularly lubricate your treadmill belt. This reduces friction between the deck and the belt – some models require specific lubrication. Just turn off the treadmill and locate the lubrication points. Wipe any dirt or debris from underneath before applying.

If you use liquid wax lubricants, follow the line of the deck under the belt. For silicone spray lubricants, you should shake the bottle before application.

Regular inspection

If you spot signs of wear (uneven texture and fraying edges), you should address them promptly. A visual inspection will tell you whether the belt is off-center. If it’s running while touching the edges, make the necessary adjustments.

Proper tension adjustment

A misaligned belt can compromise the safety and longevity of the belt. Therefore, you should check the two bolts on the rear deck (both sides) to adjust a misaligned belt. Use your hand to press the middle of the belt and turn each bolt for proper alignment.

Place the treadmill on a level surface

If you place the belt on an uneven floor, it may appear off-center, leading to misalignment over time.

Even usage

Distribute your weight evenly as you work out. Avoid anything that can make it go out of alignment.

Consider professional maintenance

A licensed technician can conduct regular inspections to ensure the longevity of your equipment.

When you center a treadmill belt, you enjoy workouts and reduce wear on the components.


Centering a treadmill belt at home takes little time and effort. Hopefully this step by step guide helps you save some money and keep your treadmill running smoothly.

Happy running!

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