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Winterizing Your Lawn Mower

  • By East Coast Lumber
  • 18 Dec, 2017

Learn How to Properly Store Your Lawn Mower for Winter

The winter season is more than just a time to bring out your seasonal equipment. It's also a time to properly store the other equipment you've used all year. For this article, we asked Dan Rogers, the manager of the East Coast Lumber Equipment Center, to explain how to winterize your lawn mower. See our Lawn Mower Winterization Infographic for step-by-step instructions.

The key to having a lawn mower that starts right up in the spring is by properly winterizing it before you put it away. This prepares your mower for the long winter months it will remain idle and makes it ready for you when you need it in the spring.

Remove or Stabilize the Fuel

A mower used at the end of the season needs to be emptied of fuel. First, drain or siphon the gas tank dry. If the gasoline you've been using in the mower over the summer has a fuel preservative, you can store it until next spring or run it in your snow thrower. If the gasoline has not had a preservative added to it, you need to use up the gasoline as soon as possible. Allowing it to sit over the winter will cause the ethanol in the gasoline to separate and its other chemical components to degrade.

The alcohol in the fuel dissolves plastic and rubber parts in the fuel system. It also attracts moisture, which leads to the corrosion of metal parts. Even if the engine escapes damage, it experiences a loss of performance from chemically degraded fuel because ethanol-based gasoline can spoil rapidly, often separating into layers of alcohol and fuel. Once you've emptied everything, restart your mower to let it burn through any remaining gas. If fuel lines are easily accessible, you can disconnect and drain them to ensure that the mower is as fuel-free as possible over the winter. This is the most important step to ensure your mower starts right up in the spring.

Lawn Mower Maintenance

You should give your mower a thorough cleaning before the winter. Remove and sharpen the mower blade. Apply a light film of oil to it and reinstall it. Disconnect the spark plug lead, tip the mower over, and clean the underside of the deck with a wire brush and a putty knife.

Remove the spark plug and apply a few drops of oil into the cylinder. Pull the recoil handle several times to ensure that this film of oil is evenly distributed on the wall of the cylinder. Replace the spark plug with a new one.

Clean or replace the air filter. Wipe the top of the mower deck clean. Lubricate all exposed cable-movement points and pivot points using a good-quality spray lubricant, like Fluid Film or WD-40 . Change the mower's oil. Be sure to check the operation and maintenance manual for what type of oil to use.

Lastly, remove the battery from your machine and store it in a climate controlled area to avoid freezing.

Battery-Powered Lawn Mowers

If you've got an electric or battery-powered mower, there is no need to fiddle with the motor. Just remove the battery, place it on a battery maintainer, and follow the above steps for maintaining all the moving parts of the mower. You'll also want to make sure the deck and wheels are clean of dirt and lawn debris.

Check the charging requirements from your battery manufacturer before leaving the battery on the charger throughout the winter.

Knotty Notes for the Home Owner and Builder

By East Coast Lumber 15 Jan, 2018
When we learned that Graystone Builders started a campaign to raise and match funds for Love for Love City , a foundation created by country singer songwriter, Kenny Chesney, it was an easy decision to help. East Coast Lumber has donated $5,000 as a show of appreciation for Graystone's commitment to this cause and the business relationship. Thank you to everyone at Graystone Builders for your kindness and dedication to a place you hold dear. Read the full press release below.
By East Coast Lumber 05 Jan, 2018

Does your family count on you to clear the driveway after a big snow storm? Are you the person who helps clear the sidewalks and the driveways for the neighborhood?

The winter season is finally here, so it’s time to talk snow blowers. At East Coast Lumber, we want our customers to think smarter about their work around the home, and ultimately get those jobs done easily and quickly. To do this, we consult the pros to give us tips on how to choose the right equipment for you. Dan Rogers, the Equipment Center Manager, is back to talk about choosing the right snow blower.

By East Coast Lumber 18 Dec, 2017

The winter season is more than just a time to bring out your seasonal equipment. It's also a time to properly store the other equipment you've used all year. For this article, we asked Dan Rogers, the manager of the East Coast Lumber Equipment Center, to explain how to winterize your lawn mower. See our Lawn Mower Winterization Infographic for step-by-step instructions.

By East Coast Lumber 21 Nov, 2017

The winter season is more than just a time to bring out your seasonal equipment. It's also a time to properly store the other equipment you've used all year. For this ProTip Tuesday, we asked Dan Rogers, the manager of the East Coast Lumber Equipment Center, to take us step-by-step on how to winterize your lawn mower. Read Dan's full article to learn how to winterize gas and battery powered mowers.

For visual representation, we also created this infographic to help give lawn mower owners an idea of how to do it yourself. We used the Toro 22” Personal Pace Mower  as a model, which can be found in our Equipment Center. According to our experts, the process should take only about an hour and a half to complete.

By East Coast Lumber 02 Nov, 2017

A deck may not be the first thing people see when they pull up to your house, but it is important to both the aesthetic of the home and for your personal comfort. So, when you're choosing what material to build your deck with, our millwork specialist and supervisor Mark Dionne says there are basically two schools of thought: pricing and maintenance. 

"It's always the battle between price and low maintenance," said Dionne. "Most homeowners are saying 'I want low or no maintenance.' But you're also coming in on a budget. Most people make decisions based on how long they're staying at their house or property."

For most long-term homeowners and the elderly, low maintenance is the diamond in the rough. For someone who is looking for a more economical solution, like most renters, or even someone who likes the authenticity of the product, wood is usually the way to go.

Within each of these options, Dionne says that material-wise, there are always a 'good, better, and best' option. Let's explore these materials and find out what tiers these products entail and why they would fit your needs.

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