Lawn mowers allow us to keep our outdoor area looking great. They keep our grass short and green, creating an attractive and enjoyable yard. To prolong their life, some maintenance is required. Properly maintaining a gas or electric lawn mower will enable it to keep your lawn trimmed throughout the spring, summer, and fall.
You will need:
• Lawn mower oil (see lawn mower manufacturer instructions for proper type)
• Disposable container for used oil
• Lawn mower air filter
• Lawn mower spark plug
• Deep socket wrench
• C clamp
• Wrench or ratchet
• Metal file for mower blade
• Steel wool
• Blade balancer
Step 1: Every few months, change the oil in the lawn mower. The more the machine is used, the more frequently the oil should be changed to prolong the life of the engine. Disconnect the machine spark plug. Find the oil drain plug (it is usually located above the cutting blade) and drain the oil into a disposable container. Follow the machine instructions for filling the machine with new oil. Add oil until the level is adequate per a dipstick reading or until oil can be seen in the fill tube.
Step 2: Fuel efficiently and engine operation are improved when the air filter is changed every month. A clogged filter can double the amount of gas used, justifying the under $10 cost of a new filter. The air filter cover is usually located on the right side near the top of the machine. Remove all screws that secure the cover, remove the old filter, and replace it with the new filter. The folds in the filter should point toward you.
Step 3: On an annual basis, change the spark plug in the mower. The spark plug is usually located on the front of the mower. Remove the black cable to reveal the plug and use the deep socket wrench to loosen and replace the spark plug.
Step 4: Following each use, remove grass clumps using a rag and a stick. After mowing wet grass, disconnect the spark plug to prevent injury, use a board to wedge the mowing blade, and wipe the blade to prevent rusting, using a rag.
Step 5: Sharpen the mower blade every few months. Disconnect the spark plug and use a board to wedge the blade. Lock the blade into position using the C clamp. Remove the blade with the wrench or ratchet. Remove small nicks with the metal file. Steel wool can be used to remove any rust. File in the direction of the cutting edge. Count the strokes and file the same number of strokes on each side. Balance the blade using a blade balancer.