Lawn tractor battery question

Thanks for the advice on over-winter battery maintenance. I know I haven't been doing that properly. The battery that 's in there is probably 2 (at most 3) seasons old. As for the trouble starting the blades, I think it ma y have been something as simple as over-tensioning the drive belt. I did p urchase a new battery, which seems to be starting the lawn tractor just fin e - but I was still having trouble starting the blades. I loosened the ten sion on that belt a bit and the blades seem to be starting much more easily now - though now I'm afraid of that belt slipping and not driving the blad es properly when cutting grass.
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