Lawn Equipment Maintenance

Lawn Mower

Spring is arriving and plants are growing. That means it will soon be time to mow your lawn, trim your hedges, etc. So before you take dusty pieces of equipment out of storage and start working you should perform maintenance on them unless you are hiring someone else to do the work with their tools. One of the first things to determine before working on equipment is the initial condition of it. If the equipment is old then you should consider replacing it with something new. If an expensive part needs to be replaced to make the equipment functional then it may also be more cost effective to buy something else.

After determining whether to buy, or continue to use existing equipment you should find the model and serial number of each item you plan to use for the season if it has one. If you are going to have someone else do the maintenance work you better contact them soon as this time of year there can be a two to three week delay in getting your work completed. If you plan to do the maintenance yourself then go to a shop that can provide you with the items needed such as filters, spark plugs, oil, blades, etc. By providing them with model and serial numbers the professional can look up your equipment and sell you the parts you need.

Some of the items you should consider for maintenance are as follow:

  • Riding Lawn Mower – Typically needs a new spark plug, oil change and filter, new air filter and possibly a new battery. The blades will also need to be sharpened, or replaced. You probably need to inflate the tires and straighten anything you may have bent last season.
  • Gas Powered Self-Propelled / Push Mower – Typically needs a new spark plug, oil change and oil filter, new air filter and the blade sharpened, or replaced. If it is a two cycle engine then you will skip the oil change / filter as the oil will be in the fuel mix.
  • Gas Powered Trimmer – Typically needs a plug and air filter if it has a two-cycle engine (four cycle will need an oil change and oil filter). Check your trim line stock and bump button on the bottom. If you are low on line pick some up, and if your bump button is heavily worn replace it.
  • Gas Powered Blower – Typically needs a plug and filter if it has a two-cycle engine (four cycle will need an oil change and oil filter). Check to make sure tubes are fitting properly, and carrying straps are in good shape.
  • Gas Powered Chain Saw – Although not used as often as some of the other yard tools, the chainsaw is very valuable when needed. Typical maintenance needs are plug, filter, chain sharpening or chain replacing.
  • Electric Tools – If you are using electric tools you need to make sure any blades are free of obstructions and electrical cords do not have any breaks in them.
  • Battery Operated Tools – Make sure any blades are free of obstructions and batteries are holding and retaining a charge for the duration of the time you typically use them. If the batteries are not holding a charge you may need to replace them, or replace the whole tool depending on battery replacement cost.
  • Manual Tools – Hedge Clippers, Loppers, Rakes, Etc. Check these tools for loose and missing parts. If they have loose parts can they be tightened and stay reasonably tightened for the duration of your work session? If not then they may need replacing. Are they sharp? If not then sharpen them. Depending on the tool, a drop or two of oil on places that see the most friction will be beneficial.
  • Gas Cans – Are your gas cans in good shape? If not then you need to replace the defective ones.
  • Old Fuel – You should consider replacing the fuel before you start the machine.

Regularly performing maintenance on quality equipment should provide years of trouble free use and keep your property looking sharp.