Posts Tagged ‘spring mower safety check’

It’s Time for Spring Mower Maintenance

Tuesday, April 30th, 2019
Spring mower maintenance is essential for a great mowing season

If spring rains have suddenly made your lawn into a mess, it’s tempting to break out the mower and get it cut. But before you mow for the first time, it’s important to perform spring mower maintenance and do a safety check. Skipping it could mean costly repairs and could cause damage to your lawn.

First, do a visual check for problems, including wear and rust on cables, belts and brakes. Tighten any loose screws and bolts, and be sure that baggers and other add-on accessories are properly attached.  Check that handles on walk-behinds, and ROPS and seats on riding and zero-turn mowers, are in good condition and securely attached.

Next, perform basic spring maintenance. Replace any fluids or fuels left unused from last fall. Gas and fuels that have sat for months can degrade in quality, which makes the mower harder to start. Oil should be replaced, too, since dirt and other contaminants in the oil can cause engine damage. You should also replace filters, as dirty or clogged filters can lead to longer mow times and sluggish performance.

Clean your mower, especially if you didn’t clean it in the fall. Get rid of dirt and clippings inside and out. Use forced air rather than water to do this. A clean cutting deck provides improved air flow and capacity, which means improved performance and results.

Check the mower blades. Replace any that are nicked or cracked, and sharpen dull blades. Then be sure blades are straight and properly balanced. Unbalanced blades will cause ragged, uneven cutting, and knocking or excess vibration can damage your mower deck. Learn more about proper mower blade maintenance.

Finally, check the wheels. Look for permanent flat spots on tires, or worn and cracked tires, and replace these. For mowers with inflatable tires, check pressure and inflate as necessary.

Maintenance requirements vary from mower to mower. While we do our best to design mowers that require little maintenance, the needs of an Exmark walk-behind mower are different than those of an Exmark zero-turn. If you have questions about maintenance or would prefer to have a professional look over your mower, reach out to a service professional at your local Exmark dealer.

How to Perform a Spring Mower Safety Check

Thursday, April 19th, 2018

Before you head out to mow for the first time this spring, take the time for a safety check as part of your spring mower maintenance. Beyond making sure your mower is operating properly, some quick checks could help make you and your loved ones safer. Here are seven essential things to check before you head out to mow the grass:

Visually check the machine for signs of damage. This includes wear and rust on cables, belts and brakes, all of which could create safety hazards if they failed while the mower was running. Tighten loose belts, and replace belts with cracks or that show signs of separation.

Make sure parts are securely attached, especially handles on walk behinds, and seats and rollover protection systems (ROPS) on riding mowers. Tighten any loose screws and bolts. Pay attention to baggers and other add-on accessories, and check that they are correctly and securely attached to the mower.

Replace nicked or damaged blades, and check that blades are properly installed and correctly balanced. An unbalanced blade can damage the mower deck; a blade that comes loose during operation could cause significant injury.

Look for cracks, places where the metal is rusting through, and other signs of structural damage to the mower, especially older mowers.

Check that wheels are in good condition and that tires are properly inflated and show no signs of balding, flat spots or other wear. Tighten lug bolts.

Replace all fluids and lubricate the machine, and check for leaking fluids. Clean any accumulated grease or debris, especially from the engine, as this can be a fire hazard.

Start the mower and let it run for a few minutes. Take note of unusual vibration and noises, as these can indicate a problem that needs attention.

Paying attention to the condition of your mower can extend the life of your mower and help keep you safer while operating it. If you’re running short on time, your Exmark dealer may be able to complete a spring tune up and safety check for you. For complete mower safety information, refer to your owner’s manual, or check out our Safety Resources.