It’s the hottest, yet most rewarding chore of the summer – mowing your lawn. There’s nothing like the hum of a properly running mower and the sweet smell of freshly cut grass in the evening. Here are ten mower maintenance checks for your lawn mower to keep it running smoothly for the rest of the summer and years to come.
#1 Clean or replace the spark plug.
You can find charts online that show you what a good spark plug looks like. If the spark plug doesn’t look right, it may be indicative of an engine problem. When in doubt, ask your service technician.
#2 Clean or replace the air filter.
Before doing replacing the filter, blow the lawnmower off to remove debris. This keeps particulates out of the carburetor chamber.
#3 Check the blade for sharpness.
The blade should be free of rough places. If not, remove it and replace it or have it sharpened by a professional.
#4 Clean the deck of the mower periodically.
This can be done with compressed air or a water hose. If using a water hose, take care to keep the water off the engine.
#5 Clean the under-carriage.
This is best done with a water hose. Sometimes the build up may require some scraping.
#6 Check all the belts.
If your push mower is self propelled, it may be driven by a belt. Replace any belt that is cracked or worn. If the mower is gear driven, check all gears for wear and replace as needed. In many cases one of the wheels doubles as a gear.
#7 Replace any wheels that are worn and wobbling.
Eventually, these wheels will likely break. They usually break right in the middle of mowing, leaving you with a yard partially mowed until you can find a replacement to fix it.
#8 Check all tires on riding mowers.
Keep them properly inflated. The required psi is stamped somewhere on the tire. Replace the tires when you see any sign of dry rot or gashes in them.
#9 Familiarize yourself with any grease fittings.
Grease these periodically or as often as the manual states. A properly greased steering system is much easier to use.
#10 Change the oil every year.
There is a plug somewhere on the bottom of the mower to drain the oil. It’s best to run the mower before changing the oil for a few minutes to warm the oil. This loosens sludge and gives you a better oil change. Take care not to over-tighten the plug.
Another helpful hint is to use fuel stabilizer in the gas you use for your lawnmower and other small engines. This keeps the fuel fresh over the off-season, keeping the carburetor system clean. It’s also a good idea to start the mower a few times in the off-season to keep fuel moving through the system. It keeps sludge from building up in the crankcase and tarnish out of the carburetor. Always keep your lawnmower sheltered and out of the weather. A lawnmower that is kept dry, clean, and maintained well will serve you much longer than one that’s neglected.
Post Author: andyc.