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A lawn mower has a lot of similarities with cars, and with spring around the corner, many Americans will be dusting off their lawn mower soon. Just like how cars need to be tuned up after they’ve been stored away for some time, lawn mowers also need to be prepped after being stored away for the winter. Here are seven maintenance tips that folks should remember when preparing their lawn mower for spring.

1. Refuel your lawn mower with fresh gas

Tractor Supply wrote that one of the most essential maintenance tips that owners should be aware of is ensuring that their lawn mower’s gas is fresh. Gas can go bad in about a month, and burning that old gas can clog and gum up parts of the engine. Ultimately, that can prevent it from running properly.

This problem occurs in cars too, but it’s fairly simple to solve. Before storing the mower, owners should empty the tank. Another option is adding a fuel stabilizer to the gas tank, which will keep the gas fresh.

2. Change the oil in the lawn mower

Just like with gas-powered cars, maintaining the oil levels in a lawn mower is an important part of preparing it for spring. If the oil in the mower is dirty or there’s just not enough oil, that can cause severe issues to the machine. For example, it could shorten the engine’s life and cause it to seize up. 

That’s why it’s important to change the oil every season or so. It’s also important to get the right oil for the lawn mower, which is usually the oil the manufacturer recommends.

3. Check the lawn mower’s fuel filter

Maintenance and repairs on lawn mowers for the 12-hour Lawn Mower Endurance Race in Billinghurst, England
Repairing a lawn mower | Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images

A lawn mower’s fuel filter can get clogged up, too, making it hard to start the machine. Owners don’t need to replace their fuel filter every season, but it’s still a good idea for a maintenance check before spring to see if it needs replacing before using the mower.

4. Check the air filter too

Similarly, owners should check their air filters every season. Unlike the fuel filter, a dirty air filter can cause more problems, including making the mower hard to start, shortening its engine life, and killing its fuel efficiency. As such, owners should clean or replace their air filters every spring, according to Tractor Supply.

5. Take a close look at the lawn mower’s spark plugs

Spark plugs are another essential part of a lawn mower that needs to be kept in tip-top shape. Owners should inspect, clean, or replace their mower’s spark plugs every spring. Faulty spark plugs can prevent the engine from running smoothly.

6. Grease the mechanical joints if necessary

Properly lubricating the lawn mower’s mechanical joints can ensure that the moving parts don’t wear out too early and can also prevent the mower from seizing up and malfunctioning. However, owners should look at their lawn mower’s manual before greasing up the joints. The owner’s manual will likely show the maintenance locations of all the lawn mower’s grease fittings.

7. Recharge the lawn mower’s battery if necessary

Another similarity that lawn mowers have with cars is that many have a small battery installed. Like a car battery, the lawn mower’s battery can die or lose power if it’s been stored for the whole winter. That’s why owners must recharge the mower’s battery, and if that isn’t enough, they will need to replace the battery entirely.

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