New England Outdoor Blog

How to Keep Your Mower in Top Condition

DIY lawn lawn maintenance Maintenance mower


Senior man mowing the lawn with a lawnmower


When it comes to keeping your yard lush and green, the tools you use matter. Even if you purchased the best mower on the market, you’ll still need to put in a little work to keep it running efficiently and to ensure a properly cut lawn.


Here are some tips to prolong the life of your mower and get a good clean cut every time.


Keep it Fresh


Just like your car, your mower will need oil changes. This should be done each spring even if you don’t think your mower needs it because dirt and buildup in your oil tank can wreck your engine. You can take it to a professional, but it’s a fairly easy do-it-yourself job – just be sure to check the owner’s manual to make sure you’re using the right type of oil.


A new spark plug at the beginning of each season is a good idea, and it’s a simple and inexpensive job. Just disconnect the spark plug wire, clean the area, and use a wrench or spark plug socket to remove the old plug. In a pinch, you can also just clean your old spark plug with a wire brush and cleaner. However, if it’s more than two years old, put it on your to-do list to replace it.


Keep it Sharp


Dull mower blades can actually ruin your lawn because they tear rather than cut the blades of grass, leaving them susceptible to disease. You can sharpen your mower blades at home, but it’s very inexpensive to get them sharpened professionally, and the job can be risky if you’re not a seasoned do-it-yourselfer. If you’re taking matters into your own hands, whatever you do just make sure the spark plug is disconnected before you start tooling with the blades.


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Keep it Clean


If you’ve changed your spark plug but still find that your mower is hard to start, the culprit could be a dirty air filter. Cleaning your mower’s air filter is relatively easy, but there are a few steps to it and the job depends on the type of filter you have.


You’ll also want to clean the undercarriage of your mower because clippings will clump and clog the discharge chute. Because this involves putting your hands near the mower blades, disconnect your spark plug first and foremost, then clean the underside with a wire brush and rinse it off with a hose.


Finally, be sure to keep your mower dry and rust-free by storing it in a sheltered area. An outdoor shed is a great solution, and helps you keep all of your yard tools and equipment in one place for easy access and organization.


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