Just as it’s inevitable that your lawn will keep growing, it’s inevitable that at one time or another you will experience issues with your lawn mower. It may sputter, or cut out, or it may not start at all. The good news is that a little troubleshooting, maintenance, or repairs you can probably get your mower back on the turf in no time. The majority of mower problems are caused by failing to perform basic lawn mower maintenance at the mowing season’s end and storing it off-season without routine maintenance. Additionally, cold temperatures cause certain fuels to gel, clogging the carburetor and preventing your lawn mower from starting.
When you add in clogged, broken, or corroded parts, or when your mower refuses to start or runs unreliably, things can start to get confusing. There are many reasons that your lawn mower may need servicing, and it can save you a significant amount of time and money to consult a professional. Whether you’re using a small push-mower or a riding lawn mower or zero-turn mower, this is just as true.
Lawn Mower Issues
There are a variety of reasons your mower doesn’t work properly, if at all. Here are the most common reasons:
Lawn Mower Loses Power
If your mower keeps losing power while you’re operating it, the air filter may be dirty and need replacing, or there may be bad gas in the mower.
Lawn Mower is Overheating
Many mowers have cooling fins and engine shrouds to eliminate overheating. If these components are filled with grass clippings, dirt, and other debris, the mower can quickly overheat because mower sensors signal to stop the mower from being started or continuing to run.
Lawn Mower Doesn’t Cut Properly
Mower blades tend to get duller with every use. Hitting rocks, roots, or other hard objects can nick the blades, affecting the cut greatly. While an experienced DIY person may be able to sharpen them, this dangerous task should be left to the professionals.
What To Do If Your Lawn Mower Breaks Down
If your mower suddenly calls it quits, it could be broken, or it could just be in need of routine maintenance. If you are handy around a mower, check the following maintenance issues; if not, it’s time to schedule professional lawn mower maintenance or repairs.
- Check the mower’s gasoline — If it is older than 30 days, empty it from the mower and add fresh gasoline. Gasoline loses its volatility during the winter or periods of non-use, which will cause problems with starting later. It is recommended that you drain the gasoline from the mower at the end of each mowing season.
- Check the oil -– Measure the amount of oil in the mower and check the color and consistency. If it’s overly thick or appears black, it’s time for an oil change. Check your manual for recommended oil change scheduling. Most mowers require an oil change after 25-50 hours of use.
- Check the mower’s air filter –- Your lawn mower’s air filter needs to be changed annually. A clogged air filter makes the mower run less efficiently, and allow carbon to build up on the cylinder and spark plug, causing the plug to foul, and compromising the entire mower.
Are There Lawn Mower Service Centers?
Just as it is with your car, performing routine maintenance and repairs can extend the life of your lawn mower. Lawn mower service centers are the equivalent of mechanic service centers for your car. To run most efficiently, your mower needs a regular tune-up that includes replacing the air filter and spark plug, changing the oil, and sharpening the blades. This is equally true for both residential lawn mowers and for commercial lawn mowers. However, if you aren’t a hands-on person or your mower is broken beyond basic DIY repairs, it’s best to take your mower to a trusted lawn mower service center for regular tune-ups, service, and repairs.