Keeping your lawn mower in excellent working condition is a big part of maintaining a beautiful, healthy lawn, and it’s also key to ensuring your lawn mower will last as long as possible – approximately 10-15 years. Performing regular maintenance on your lawn mower, particularly its engine, will extend your lawn mower’s life and help it work its best all season long.
Lawn Mower Maintenance
Lawn mowers are one of the most important pieces of garden equipment for maintaining your outdoor spaces, keeping it look neat, tidy and fresh. However, they are renowned for breaking over time and can be particularly short lived due to lack of upkeep and unfortunate rust build up.
You don’t need to call on a professional and you certainly don’t need expert skills in small-engine maintenance to do these tasks effectively. Our simple yet important tips below are inexpensive to complete and are to help those less experienced.
What to do with your lawn mower in winter?
Did you know the correct maintenance for your lawn mower should always start during the winter months before you store it away? If you don’t take the vital precautions before storing it at the end of the season, it is most likely it won’t be ready to do its job properly in the spring.
Here are some easy steps to take before storing your lawn mower in the winter:
- It’s always safe and important to remove any gas out of the lawn mower
- Check the cables and ensure they are connected before storing
- Remove and clean any grass or residue from the undercarriage
- Make sure you store your lawn mower in a dry area for the winter
Starting your lawn mower after winter
So, now you know how to put your lawn mower to bed in the winter, it’s just as important to know how to get your mower ready for a busy spring season ahead.
Before starting up your mower for its first trip around the lawn, especially after the frosty weather, make sure you check on all the removable pieces. Although your mower has been stored in a safe and dry place during the colder months, things can still become dirty and extricated.
Next, check the spark plug and air filter. The spark plug is one of the main components that starts your lawn mower. Some avid gardeners and professionals would advise it should be replaced at the beginning of each mowing season as it’s low in cost and easy to do so. Once it’s been checked or replaced, it’s time to check the mowers filter as it gets dusty and dirty when not being used. Dirt can cause stress on your mower and waste gas when not cleaned properly. If the air filter needs replacing, we suggest doing this in spring and again halfway through the season.
Top tip: We recommend a thorough clean down too before your first spring mow! A simple, affordable and easy solution, as well as an excellent lawn mower cleaner, is WD-40®. Not only will a simple spray keep the housing and blades of your mower free from rust, but it will also prevent grass from sticking to them, keeping the functionality in great condition. During the sunnier months, if you give your lawn mower components a regular weekly clean with the help of the trusty can, WD-40, it will prevent and remove rust and prevent it from occurring. For a step by step guide on a deeper lawn mower service, visit here.
During the colder months, the lawn pretty much goes dormant, however, lawn care doesn’t quite end in the winter. To help you get prepared for the frostier season, here are some quick and easy winterizing tips to follow, so you can concentrate on building snowmen instead!
- Tidy up. Before closing your garden for the winter, it’s important not to leave debris, leaves, ornaments or even children’s toys out on the grass. They can suppress the lawn, create unwanted conditions and also invite insects, mice, and other destructive pests.
- The last mow. For the last couple of mows you complete, lower the height of your mower by a notch or two. Overly long grass can smother itself and is at risk of damage from freezing conditions. Be careful not to cut the grass too short exposing the crown of the plant to winter conditions.
- Seed it. Before putting your lawn to bed, invest in some ‘Cool-Weather Grass Seed’ and spread it evenly across your lawn. This will help protect in the harsher winter conditions.
Can you cut grass in winter?
Mowing during the winter is usually not needed, unless the weather is mild and the grass is still growing. If this is the case, mow occasionally with a high cut setting. However, it’s important not to attempt this if the conditions of the ground are soft or frozen. Pick a dry day and make sure the soil is firm before participating in a winter mow.
When to cut grass after the winter?
When it comes to regular mowing season, it’s ultimately weather dependent. The recommendation is to wait until you can see the grass growing and changing colour before you start. Do not cut your lawn if the soil is soft or if there is a frost (or one due within 24 hours), as mowing in these conditions will harm turf and compact soil. Other factors include how shady your lawn is. What’s more, even if you haven’t mowed over the winter, the blades will still need to be set higher than usual (2 to 2.5 inches is best height) , gradually reducing the height each time you mow. If you cut the lawn too low, you’ll scalp and weaken the grass.
There you have it all the top tips to keep your grass pristine and your lawn mower working seamlessly (with the help of WD-40) through the winter months ready for spring! Learn how to clean your garden sprinklers or prevent rust on your garden chairs. Browse our blog for even more WD-40 Uses and DIY tips.