11 Key Maintenance Tips For Long Lawn Mower Life

Keep your lawn mower running smoothly with these 11 maintenance tips! Learn how to extend its lifespan and save money on repairs.

man mowing his tall back lawn with a gas lawnmower


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Lawn & Garden


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If you’re a homeowner with a lawn, then you know the importance of keeping your lawn mower running smoothly.

A well-maintained lawn mower not only ensures a clean and well-manicured lawn but also saves you money by avoiding costly repairs and replacements. In this article, we’ll discuss 11 key maintenance tips that will help extend the life of your lawn mower.

First and foremost, it’s crucial to read the owner’s manual that came with your mower. The manual will provide instructions on how to properly maintain your machine, as well as information on specific parts and features.

It’s also important to check the oil level regularly and change the oil at recommended intervals. By following these and other key maintenance tips, you can ensure that your lawn mower is in top condition and ready to tackle even the toughest lawn care tasks.

man mowing his tall back lawn with a gas lawnmower

1) Read the Owner’s Manual

You’ll want to start by taking a peek at the owner’s manual, which is jam-packed with all sorts of helpful information to keep your trusty machine running like a dream.

The manual will provide key insights into how to properly operate your lawn mower, including guidance on how to handle any potential maintenance issues that may arise over time.

It may also include helpful tips on how to store your lawn mower during the off-season, which can help ensure its longevity.

One of the key benefits of reviewing your owner’s manual is that it can help you identify potential maintenance issues before they become major problems.

By understanding how your lawn mower works and what it needs to operate at peak efficiency, you can take proactive steps to maintain its health and prolong its lifespan.

From changing the oil and air filter to sharpening the blades and lubricating the engine, the owner’s manual can be an invaluable resource for anyone looking to keep their lawn mower in tip-top shape.

2) Check the Oil Level Regularly

Make sure to keep an eye on the oil level in your machine to ensure it runs smoothly and efficiently.

Checking the oil level regularly is a simple yet crucial step in maintaining the longevity of your lawn mower. The oil lubricates the engine’s moving parts and helps to prevent wear and tear on the machine.

To check the oil level, first, locate the oil dipstick, which is usually located near the engine. Remove the dipstick and wipe it clean with a cloth.

Then, reinsert the dipstick into the engine and remove it again. The oil level should be between the “full” and “add” marks on the dipstick.

If the oil level is low, add the appropriate type of oil in small increments until it reaches the desired level.

By checking and maintaining the oil level in your lawn mower, you can extend the life of your machine and avoid costly repairs.

3) Change the Oil

Now it’s time to give your trusty machine some love and change its oil for optimal performance and a smooth-running engine.

Changing the oil regularly is one of the most important maintenance tasks for your lawn mower. Over time, the oil in your engine can become contaminated with dirt, debris, and other particles, which can lead to engine damage and reduced performance.

By changing the oil on a regular basis, you can help ensure that your lawn mower stays in top condition and lasts for many years to come.

To change the oil in your lawn mower, start by reading your owner’s manual for specific instructions on how to do so.

Generally, you will need to drain the old oil from the engine, replace the oil filter, and then fill the engine with fresh, clean oil. It’s important to use the correct type of oil for your engine, as using the wrong type can cause damage to your lawn mower.

By taking the time to change your lawn mower’s oil regularly, you can help ensure that it runs smoothly, and efficiently, and lasts for many years to come.

4) Replace the Air Filter

It’s time to give your machine some TLC by replacing the air filter, ensuring that it’s running smoothly and efficiently. The air filter is responsible for preventing dirt, dust, and debris from entering the engine.

Over time, the air filter becomes clogged with dirt and can’t perform its job effectively. This can cause the engine to work harder than necessary, leading to reduced fuel efficiency and potential damage to the engine.

To replace the air filter, consult your owner’s manual for guidance. Usually, you’ll need to remove the air filter cover, take out the old filter and replace it with a new one.

Make sure to dispose of the old air filter properly. It’s important to replace the air filter at least once a year or more frequently if you mow in dusty or dirty conditions.

By replacing the air filter, you’ll help extend the life of your lawn mower and keep it running smoothly for years to come.

5) Inspect and Sharpen the Blades

Before moving on to inspecting and sharpening the blades, take a moment to appreciate the importance of this step in keeping your machine running at peak performance.

Dull blades not only make your mower work harder, but they can also damage your lawn by tearing the grass instead of cutting it cleanly.

This can lead to a brown and unhealthy-looking lawn. Regularly inspecting and sharpening your blades will ensure that your lawn is cut cleanly and evenly, which promotes healthy growth and a beautiful landscape.

Inspecting and sharpening the blades is a relatively easy task that can be done at home with a few basic tools. First, turn off the mower and disconnect the spark plug wire to prevent accidental starting.

Then, carefully remove the blade and inspect it for any cracks or signs of damage. If the blade is damaged, it should be replaced immediately.

If the blade is in good condition, use a file or grinding wheel to sharpen the cutting edge. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the correct angle and technique.

By taking the time to inspect and sharpen your blades regularly, you can extend the life of your mower and ensure a healthy lawn.

6) Clean the Deck

Cleaning the deck is an essential step in keeping your machine running smoothly and maintaining a pristine lawn.

Grass clippings, dirt, and debris can accumulate on the underside of the deck, leading to rust and corrosion over time.

This can also affect the performance of your lawn mower, causing it to work harder than necessary and potentially shortening its lifespan.

To avoid these problems, it’s important to regularly clean the deck after each mowing session.

To start, turn off the engine and remove the spark plug to prevent accidental starting. Then, use a scraper or putty knife to remove any built-up grass clippings and debris from the deck.

You can also use a wire brush or pressure washer to remove stubborn grime. Be sure to check for any signs of rust or damage while cleaning, and address these issues promptly to prevent further damage.

By regularly cleaning the deck, you can help extend the life of your lawn mower and keep your yard looking its best.

7) Check the Spark Plug

Now let’s take a quick look at how checking the spark plug can help keep your machine running smoothly and avoid potential issues down the road.

The spark plug is a vital part of your lawn mower’s ignition system, responsible for igniting the fuel and air mixture that powers the engine.

Over time, the spark plug can become dirty, worn, or damaged, which can lead to starting issues, reduced performance, and even engine damage.

To check the spark plug, first, remove the spark plug wire from the plug and use a spark plug socket to remove the plug from the engine.

Check the plug for signs of wear, such as a worn electrode or cracked porcelain. If the plug looks worn or damaged, replace it with a new one.

If the plug looks fine, use a spark plug gap tool to check the gap between the center and ground electrodes.

Adjust the gap if necessary, using the tool to bend the ground electrode slightly. By checking and maintaining your spark plug, you can ensure optimal engine performance and avoid costly repairs down the line.

8) Lubricate Moving Parts

To keep your machine running smoothly and avoid potential issues, make sure to lubricate all moving parts regularly.

Lawnmowers have a lot of moving parts, from the blades to the engine components, and all of these parts need proper lubrication to function properly.

Without proper lubrication, the parts can wear down faster, causing damage to the machine and potentially leading to costly repairs.

When lubricating your lawn mower, it’s important to use the right type of lubricant for each part. For example, the blades should be lubricated with light oil, while the engine components may require thicker grease.

Check your owner’s manual to determine the recommended lubricant for each part. Additionally, make sure to clean each part thoroughly before applying any lubricant, as dirt and debris can cause damage and prevent proper lubrication.

By taking the time to lubricate your lawn mower’s moving parts regularly, you can help ensure a long and healthy life for your machine.

9) Store Your Mower Properly

Make sure you store your machine properly to protect it from the elements and prevent any potential damage.

First and foremost, you should always clean your mower before putting it away. This includes removing any debris, grass clippings, or dirt that may have accumulated during use.

Once you have cleaned your mower, make sure to dry it thoroughly to prevent any rust from forming.

Next, you should store your mower in a dry and secure place , such as a garage or shed. Avoid leaving it outside, as exposure to the elements can cause damage to the engine and other components.

Additionally, you should consider covering your mower with a protective cover to further shield it from the elements.

By taking these simple steps, you can ensure that your mower stays in top condition for years to come.

10) Use the Right Fuel

If you want to keep your machine running smoothly, you gotta use the right fuel, buddy. It may be tempting to use any old gasoline you have lying around in your garage, but that could do more harm than good.

Using the wrong fuel can clog up your engine, leading to decreased performance and even damage over time.

So, what’s the right fuel to use? It depends on the type of mower you have. Some mowers require gasoline with a higher octane rating, while others can run just fine on regular unleaded gasoline.

It’s important to read your mower’s manual carefully and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. This will ensure that your mower runs efficiently and lasts as long as possible.

11) Address Any Issues Promptly

In addition to using the right fuel for your lawn mower, it’s also important to address any issues promptly. Ignoring small problems can lead to bigger, more expensive issues down the line.

If you notice that your mower is making strange noises or isn’t cutting as well as it used to, don’t hesitate to take it in for a tune-up or repair.

Regular maintenance and upkeep can extend the life of your lawn mower, and addressing any issues as soon as they arise is a key part of that.

By taking care of problems promptly, you can avoid costly repairs and ensure that your mower runs smoothly for years to come.

So, be proactive in keeping an eye on your mower’s performance, and don’t hesitate to seek professional help if you notice any issues.

Are the maintenance tips for traditional lawn mowers applicable to robotic lawn mowers as well?

When it comes to maintenance, the tips for traditional lawn mowers are not directly applicable to robotic lawn mowers. While both require regular cleaning and blade sharpening, robotic mowers have additional considerations due to their advanced technology and the intricate process of how robotic mowers work.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I replace the air filter in my lawn mower?

The air filter in your lawn mower is an essential component that keeps dirt, debris, and other contaminants from entering the engine.

To ensure optimal performance, it’s recommended that you replace the air filter every 25 hours of use or once a year, whichever comes first.

Neglecting to replace the air filter can lead to reduced engine power, increased fuel consumption, and even engine damage.

So, if you want to keep your lawn mower running smoothly for years to come, don’t forget to replace the air filter on a regular basis.

Can I use regular gasoline in my lawn mower or do I need to use a special type of fuel?

Using regular gasoline in your lawn mower is perfectly fine, as long as it meets the minimum octane rating required by the manufacturer.

Many people believe that they need to use special fuels or additives, but this is not typically necessary. However, it is important to always use fresh gasoline and to avoid using fuel that has been sitting for an extended period of time.

Stale gasoline can cause problems with your engine and decrease its overall performance. By using fresh gasoline and ensuring that it meets the minimum octane rating, you can keep your lawn mower running smoothly and efficiently for years to come.

How often should I get my lawn mower serviced by a professional?

It is recommended to get your lawn mower serviced by a professional at least once a year. Regular maintenance by a professional can help prevent major breakdowns and extend the life of your lawn mower.

During a professional service, the technician will inspect and clean the air filter, spark plug, and carburetor, as well as change the oil and sharpen the blades. They may also check the fuel system, belts, and cables for any signs of wear and tear.

By keeping up with regular maintenance, you can ensure that your lawn mower will run smoothly and efficiently for years to come.

Is it necessary to use a specific type of oil in my lawn mower or can I use any type of motor oil?

Using the wrong type of oil in your lawn mower can lead to serious damage and a shorter lifespan for your machine.

It is important to use the specific type of oil recommended by the manufacturer in order to ensure proper lubrication and performance.

While it may be tempting to use any type of motor oil you have on hand, it is not worth the risk of damaging your equipment.

Always refer to the owner’s manual for the correct oil type and change it regularly to keep your lawn mower running smoothly for years to come.

What should I do if my lawn mower won’t start or is running poorly?

If your lawn mower won’t start or is running poorly, there are a few things you can try before calling a professional.

First, check the fuel and oil levels to make sure they are at the appropriate levels. Next, inspect the spark plug and air filter to see if they need to be cleaned or replaced.

It’s also important to regularly sharpen the mower blades and clean the underside of the deck to prevent clogging and ensure a clean cut.

By taking these steps, you can help prevent issues and extend the life of your lawn mower.