How to Change the Treadmill Running Board

by William Machin

Treadmills have metallic or solid wood decks. Wood decks are pre-waxed or require dry deck lube that's sprinkled on by hand or applied automatically. When the wood is not waxed on a regular basis, or when the automatic system is not working, the board can be heated to the point where lacquering occurs and it will not accept wax. Metallic boards require regular cleaning to prevent belt wear and damage. Changing a treadmill running board is done by obtaining the correct board for a particular unit and organizing a few basic hand tools.

Step 1

Unplug the power cord. Reduce the tension on the running belt by turning the belt tension bolts counterclockwise with an open-end wrench or using the manual adjustment knob. Remove the front roller cover. Use a standard screwdriver to unseat a snap-on cover or remove a bolt-on cover using a Phillips screwdriver or Allen wrench.

Step 2

Remove one of the side plates to expose the rollers. Side plates are fitted into slots or attached to the treadmill using screws. Slide the running belt off the front and rear rollers and inspect the inner lining for lacquering deposits. Most often these will show up as smooth patches. The running belt should be replaced if lacquering is present.

Step 3

Use a screwdriver or Allen wrench to remove the attachment bolts that secure the wood board or metallic plate to the unit. Save the bolts for re-use. Remove the board or plate and set the new one in place on the unit. Make sure the waxed side of a wood board is facing up. Align the pre-drilled holes with the attachment holes on the unit.

Step 4

Thread the bolts into the wood board or metallic plate and tighten them in an alternating sequence. This will ensure a uniform attachment. Replace the side plate and front roller cover and tighten any screws or bolts that hold these in place. Turn the adjustment knob or tension bolts to hold the belt in place. Do not over-tighten the bolts.

Items you will need

  • Allen wrenches
  • Standard screwdriver
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Open-end wrench


  • Apply dry deck lube to the surface of the board before reinstalling the running belt.
  • Consult the owner’s manual for the procedure to adjust the running belt tension.

Photo Credits:

  • George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images

This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or