Winterizing Lawn Equipment

Steve has certain fall rituals…some of which I’ll never understand. He always wears his lucky flannel shirt and gray socks to watch the Buckeyes. Really? That shirt is way past its prime and wouldn’t even make a good rag. His other ritual is winterizing the lawn mower, leaf blower and tiller. Now that’s a good routine to get into.

Being a mechanic, he knows that some basic preventative maintenance will help you get the longest life out of your equipment. Otherwise, you might be cursing it out come springtime when it won’t start and might have to haul it in for service. Here are Steve’s winterizing tips that even the most unmechancial person can do.

  • Change the oil. If you leave old oil in a motor over winter it can turn sludgy and lead to deterioration of internal engine parts. Please recycle the old oil properly. Steve’s a stickler for this.
  • Gasoline can degrade over time and residues can form that may plug fuel jets. There are two ways you can avoid this. Drain the gas or run the machine dry. The other option is to use a gas stabilizer. You can pick it up anyplace you find automotive supplies.
  • Sharpen blades, lubricate wheel bearings and throttle cables. Turn to your trusty can of WD-40 for the lubricating tasks. Turn to the owner’s manual if you’re not sure which spots should be lubricated.
  • Clean the equipment. Caked-on grass traps moisture and that leads to rust.
  • Change or clean the air filter. Once again, check your owner’s manual.

Follow these simple tips and your lawn equipment will run better and you won’t have to replace it as often. Now if I could just get Steve to replace that shirt. If you have any other thoughts on winterizing lawn equipment, the CleanGeek nation would love to hear them.