Maintaining the Lawn Mower

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 13,285
    Joe Newland, Black & Decker product development manager, shows you how to clean and maintain the lawn mower.

    Joe Newland: Hello! My name is Joe; I'm a Product Manager for Black and Decker's Outdoor Product division. We're here today to talk about cutting and maintaining your yard. Once we've finished cutting and maintaining the yard, we need to maintain the equipment. It's very important to read the instruction manual thoroughly for all lawn equipment before use and follow all warnings and safety instructions.

    The first thing we want to do is put the mower over and check the underside of the mower. Make sure that it's clean; if not, we need to clean it. We need to check the blade; if it's not sharp then you need to sharpen it. So this is a good example of the mower that does need to be cleaned and you can see from this mower, the underside is very dirty and caked with grass. You need to take a putty knife and scrape away all of this old dead grass before the next mowing. This blade also is not in very good shape, we're going to take this off and show you how to sharpen it.

    See your instruction manual for ease of doing that. We've used a 2x4 to braze the blade and keep it from turning while we remove the nut. Loosen this nut completely, remove any washers being careful to remember how they fit so when you install, you assemble it correctly. Remove the blade and secure it in a vice. Now wearing safety glasses, carefully file the edge of the blade with a fine tool file. Try and file the same amount of off each side of the blade by carrying the file strokes for each side. File only enough to get a sharp edge. If there're any major nicks and gauges, replace the blade.

    Check the balance of the blade after sharpening by clamping a screwdriver into a vice, protruding horizontally. Position the mower blade's center hole onto the screwdriver shank. Lay this properly balanced when neither in drops. Again, see your manual for more information. So once you have the blade sharpened, replace the blade with the washers and the nut. Make sure the blade is positioned as it was removed. Start mowing, check for vibration and if vibration occurs, rebalance the blade as instructed or replace the blade. Vibration is a warning of trouble. So after the mower has been cleaned and the blade has been sharpened, now it's time to store the mower and if you're storing for the winter as an example, with a gas mower, you need to drain the fuel, you don't want to store with gas in it. You need to change the oil every year and you need to look and maintain all of the puller, rope and so forth. Make sure that that's all in good working order.

    None of those problems are associated with a corded or a cordless mower. It will have no maintenance other than sharpening that blade. Now one advantage for these mowers is they take considerably less area to store, is the fact that you can remove the bag, pull the handle down. These mowers take up considerably less space to store than our gas counterparts. They could be rolled over to the corner and away for the season.

    The next task in hand is edging along your sidewalks, driveways and so forth for a clean manicured look.