8 Tips to Keep Your Lawn Mower in Top Shape

lawnmower - Mobile Mower Techs

For your lawn mower to promote healthy grass, work smoothly, and last its full life span, you need to engage in proper maintenance. Poorly maintained mowers need to be replaced years before they have to be, and dull or damaged blades can make your lawn both unattractive and susceptible to disease. Thankfully, lawn mower maintenance isn’t particularly difficult or time-consuming.

Maintain the Blades


After every mowing

Brush debris off the mower so it doesn’t have time to linger and cause damage or become hard to remove.

After every 20 – 25 hours of use

You’ll need to sharpen your blades.

To do this:

  • Disconnect the spark plug wire.
  • Drain the fuel tank.
  • Turn the mower on its side.
  • Remove the mower blade with a socket wrench.
  • Sharpen the blade by filing it at a 45-degree angle.

As needed

When you notice that your blades are significantly dented or cracked, or they are broken, you’ll need to replace them. The process for replacing them is similar to the steps for sharpening the blades. You will just replace the blades rather than sharpen them.

Tip: if you clear the yard of things that can damage blades before mowing, you can limit the need to replace your blades.

Tend the Fluids


After every 50 – 100 hours of use

Push mowers need their oil changed after 50 hours. Riding mowers need theirs changed after 100 hours.           

If you discover that your oil is black or dirty, it should be drained and replaced regardless of how long it has been.

To do this:

  • Disconnect the spark plug wire before changing the oil.
  • Turn the mower on its side so the oil can pour out into an oil-safe container.
  • Replace with oil that fits the manufacturer’s specifications. Your climate can also influence the oil you need.

Tips: if you don’t have a drain plug, you can use an oil extractor kit. And auto parts stores and city waste sites recycle oil.

When you fuel up

Whenever you add gas to your mower, treat it with a fuel stabilizer. Blended gas only lasts 30 days. Pure gas lasts for three months. If you use a fuel stabilizer, your fuel will stay fresh and be better for your mower for much longer.

Change the Spark Plug


At the start of the mowing season or once a year

Change your spark plug by:

  • Disconnecting the spark plug wire.
  • Removing the spark plug.
  • Inserting the new spark plug and tightening it with a socket wrench.

Tip: you can take the spark plug to the store with you or write down its number so you are sure to get the right one.

Clean or Replace the Filters


Once a year or as needed

Fuel filters in lawnmowers usually need to be changed only once a year, but if they’re clogged, do it as soon as you see it.

Several times a mowing season

Check the air filter to see if it’s dirty or clogged. If it is, clean or replace it. You can clean plastic foam filters, but paper ones always need to be replaced.

To do this:

  • Disconnect the spark plug wire.
  • Clean foam filters with warm water and soap. Allow it to thoroughly air dry and then grease it with a thin, even coating of about 2 tablespoons of motor oil.
  • Install the clean or new filter.

Tips: it helps to keep one or more air filters available for a quick fix. You should also read your owner’s manual to make sure you don’t need a pre-cleaner.

Other Periodic Checks


Several times a mowing season

  • Make sure tires are properly inflated and replace them if they’re damaged.
  • Check that the mower hardware is secure. If not, tighten it.
  • Check the battery often for signs of corrosion or damage, and clean or replace it as needed.

Clean the Lawn Mower 


Several times in a mowing season

Clean the lawn mower by:

  • Disconnecting the spark plug wire.
  • Emptying the fuel tank.
  • Turning the lawn mower on its side.
  • Removing any debris wrapped around the blade
  • Using a nylon brush to scrub stubborn parts.
  • Hosing the mower down.
  • Drying the mower with towels before storing.

Tip: mowing when the yard is dry will mean the mower needs less cleaning.

Storing The Lawn Mower



Store the lawn mower indoors or covered so it is protected from the elements.

At the end of the mowing season

Properly store your lawn mower by:

  • Running it until it is out of gas or draining the gas.
  • Cleaning the mower.
  • Draining the motor oil and replacing it with new.

Tips: don’t store your lawn mower near a water heater or furnace, and make sure your mower’s carburetor and spark plug housing don’t need to be fogged.

Maintain your beautiful yard with Mobile Mower Techs

If you can’t see yourself doing this maintenance or discovered too late that you needed to do these things and your mower is in bad shape, we can help. We come to you to perform the maintenance and repairs you need. Contact us to get started.