What Should I Know About Lawn Mower Repair?

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  • Written By: Adam Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 31 October 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
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Lawn mowers are relatively simple machines, but the fact that they operate outdoors will lead to problems with some. In light of this fact, there are a few things that every homeowner should know about lawn mower repair. Problems can manifest themselves in a variety of ways, from the engine not starting, to white smoke in the exhaust. Some basic knowledge and safety tips can go a long way toward extending the life of a mower.

The first thing to know about lawn mower repair is that safety is the paramount concern. It’s a good idea to wear eye protection and work gloves, as well as to disconnect the mower’s spark plug before beginning. This ensures that there is no chance that the engine will accidentally start. If the problem is that the engine won’t start, or stops soon after difficult starting, it may not be necessary to go any further than this. A worn, discolored, or damaged spark plug will need to be replaced, and this alone may solve the problem. In any case, resist the temptation to take apart the whole engine right at first.


If the spark plug is in good condition, then another part to check is the carburetor. The carburetor is the number one culprit of lawn mower problems, and this is an crucial point to know about lawn mower repair. The carburetor is highly sensitive to dirt, and must be very clean in order to work properly. Since lawn mowers often sit idle for many months, gasoline can sometimes leave harmful deposits in the carburetor. This may well be the problem if a mower won’t start for its first use after a long winter.

Another possible cause for an engine that refuses to start, is that the gas has gone bad. Sometimes during the winter months, water can leak into the carburetor or gas tank. This is not a serious problem, but it will require draining all of the gas and replacing it. Since this is the easiest type of mower repair, it may be a good idea to try it first, especially if one suspects this may be the problem. The best way to keep water from getting into the gasoline is to park the mower in a garage or shed for the winter, if possible.

Perhaps the most important thing to know about lawn mower repair is that the solution is likely a simple one, such as a dirty carburetor or air filter. Problems with the engine wiring, valves, or ignition system can get slightly more complicated. These will be solved best by a professional or by following a detailed repair manual.



Discuss this Article

Post 4

You should check your lawn mower warranty before you start doing a lawn mower repair yourself. You can void the warranty if you make a repair that the manufacturer of the mower thinks caused damage to the machine, or lead to a later problem.

Post 3

I wish I knew more about lawn mower repair. I can mow our yard in a little more than a couple hours with the used push mower we got from my girlfriend's sister. The other day, I was all set to cut the grass. When I pulled the rope to start it, the rope broke.

In my head, I know this is a simple repair and something I should be able to do myself. However, my concern is that I will take something apart and end up doing more damage. I would rather simply take the mower to a shop and have the work done since the charge isn't ever very much anyway.

Post 2

Buy a quality lawn mower and have the mower serviced before and after each cutting season and the machine will run forever with little or no repair needed. I agree with the article that keeping the mower undercover when it is not being operated is very important.

Doing the cold months when the machine is not in use, all of the fluids should be drained from the mower and it should be stored in a garage. Extreme cold over long periods can cause damage, so if you have a heated garage that is the best place to leave the mower in the winter. And it goes without saying that you should never leave the mower in the rain.

The best way to avoid costly lawn mower repair is to do maintenance on the machine regularly.

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