In January 2011, I started using a treadmill desk. Early on, I stopped using it for a year or so (I wasn’t keeping track exactly) but about eight years ago I started a habit of walking at about 3.5 miles per hour for about an hour every weekday morning. This past thursday morning, the 9th, the breaker tripped while I was walking. I reset it and tried again, and the instant I started the treadmill, it tripped again.

This almost certainly means that there’s a fault in the driver board. I looked and the inrush-limited NTC thermistor looked cracked, and I saw posts online that this was a common failure mode, so I ordered a new thermistor to replace it with. Friday morning, when I would otherwise have been walking, I removed the driver board and removed the thermistor to prepare to put the new one in, and saw that what had looked like a crack was a stray line of silicone glue. The thermistor is fine. Some other component is at fault, and nothing shows physical damage. A replacement board is about $250. After eight years of fairly constant use, even with appropriately liberal lubrication, the walking belt is almost completely worn out; another $200. The replacement bearings I installed in the motor are louder than the old bearings and could be replaced again with tighter tolerance bearings (buying loose tolerance bearings was a bad decision).

It’s hard to invest about $500 to repair a nine year old treadmill and wonder what will fail next, when a completely new treadmill that (unlike my old treadmill) was actually designed as a walking treadmill is only twice that and comes with a warranty. The LifeSpan TR1200-DT3 has good reviews.

I’m not looking forward to carrying it up the stairs.