My Lawn Mower Bogs Down in Thicker Grass

You care cruising along and cutting the grass when you hit a patch that is a little thicker than normal. All of a sudden the mower begins to bog down and may even die. You are now wondering why it does that?

If your lawn mower works well under normal conditions, it could be a mechanical, electrical or fuel problem. Each of these systems will need to be troubleshot to determine what the problem is. One by one is the best way to proceed.

Since you really cannot put a load on the engine unless you are cutting grass, let’s check some easy things first. Is the spark plug normal looking with a brownish appearance on the electrode? Is the fuel filter clogging up? Are the valves properly adjusted? Is one cylinder not getting spark or fuel?

Check each component to find out what exactly is causing the problem. Some things such as spark will require a spark tester to determine if the spark is good or not. The other items are a visual inspection to see if things are working as they should be.

If you find something wrong, adjust or change the component and retest to see what results you get to ensure that your lawn mower is not bogging down.

Should you need technical help with your lawn mower, check our Locations page for a lawn mower repair shop near you.

My Lawn Mower is Leaking Gas From The Air Filter

If any gas is leaking from your lawn mower, that is a safety hazard. The fumes can ignite from a hot exhaust  and cause a fire. When you have a gas leak, it is best to get it addressed by a lawn mower repair professional immediately.

Many times the cause of this leak is the needle and seat in the carburetor is not sealing. The weight of the gas from the tank is sitting on the needle which is the size of a sharpened pencil lead. If there is any buildup of oxidation on it, it will begin to leak. It could leak out slowly or it could come out gushing and empty the tank quickly.

Garage fires have been caused by leaking lawn mowers, so be careful about paying attention to the top of your mower on a push or self-propelled and on the floor if it is a rider or zero turn.

The carburetor will need to be disassembled and cleaned or replaced if the fuel oxidation is too bad.

If you need lawn mower repair, visit our Locations page for a shop near you.

One Wheel Turns on My Riding Lawn Mower and Other Does Not

Riding lawn mower transmissions are normally a one wheel drive at a time. You may notice it especially on hills where one tire slips on the uphill side.

On many riding lawn mowers, this is a perfectly normal situation. There is a sort of limited slip built into them and slippage like this is common.

If your riding lawn mower is supposed to have both wheels turning, then you may have a transmission problem or one of the wheel keys to holds the wheel to the axle may not have been installed after recent work.

One way to tell if your transmission is working properly is to put the rear up on jacks and then spin one back tire. The other tire should rotate in the opposite direction on a normal lawn mower. They should both turn in the same direction on a mower where both wheels engage.

Check the wheel keys. They are just a square piece of steel that slides into the axle and the wheel itself.

If you cannot find the source of the problem, visit one of our Locations for a riding lawn mower shop near you.

When I Let The Clutch Out My Riding Lawn Mower Dies

You start up your riding lawn mower and everything is running fine. You let the clutch out and then it quickly dies! You try fiddling with the different knobs and it does the same thing.

Let’s check a few things to see if we can quickly troubleshoot this problem.

First, make sure that the PTO switch or Lever is in the OFF position. Next, put the riding lawn mower in neutral and disengage any other features of the mower.

Now start the engine and let the clutch out. If it dies again, check to make sure the seat switch is connected that is under the seat. If it is disconnected, re-connect it and try again.

Most likely this problem is the seat switch. The mower is not sensing someone seated and will kill the engine if an operator is not present. It is creating a scenario where the mower is tipped over and wants to shut down the engine to stop the blades from turning and injuring the rider if the mower rolled over onto them.

You can replace the seat switch fairly easily and a common one is this //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=lawnmowerre02-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B004HSFDT4&asins=B004HSFDT4&linkId=ed9f0add22f818e9db12f4675f36bae3&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff“>switch.

6 Ways To Extend Your Lawn Mowers Life in Dusty Conditions

Dust is a killer on a lawn mower engine and drive system. When you are mowing on a dusty lawn, your mower will kick the dust up and it covers every part of your mower from the transmission to the electrical components.

To keep your lawn mower working its best for years to come, here are some pro tips that will do the trick.

  1. Air Filter

Check your air filter more frequently. You probably change it once a year right now, but if you are mowing in dusty conditions, you may need to change it 2-3 times a year or more. Remove the filter cover and use compressed air to blow out the housing. Now remove the filter and inspect it by holding it up to a light or by putting a light inside of it for round filters. If there is little light shining through, replace it. If there is a foam air filter, gently clean it with compressed air and then wash it in a mix of liquid detergent and water. Squeeze out the excess water and allow to dry. You can also spray some oil filter oil on it to help capture the dust before it gets to your air filter.

  1. Oil

Check your oil and change it more frequently. Fine dust particles will get through the air filter and crankcase seals and into the oil. These microscopic pieces of sand are like a diamond and will scour the engine parts and create more wear over time. By changing your oil more frequently, you will purge these contaminants out of the system each time you change it.

Most lawn mowers use 10W-30 or SAE-30 motor oil. You can find the oil that we recommend by clicking on these links //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=lawnmowerre02-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B00GEIAA0C&asins=B00GEIAA0C&linkId=f2e9839e672e5450c7935279d53e03e1&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff“>10W-30  – //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=lawnmowerre02-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B000BXOGMY&asins=B000BXOGMY&linkId=88fb8f8c9825b25cdc4914bf9e66676b&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff“>SAE30

  1. Spark Plug

Change your spark plug a couple times year. As this dust comes into the engine, it mixes with the gas and air and ignites in the cylinder. It can collect in the spark plug and fowl it out. Spark plugs are fairly cheap, so change them out to keep your engine burning clean.

  1. Cleaning

Keeping your engine, deck and drive system as clean as possible is extremely important. As you mow, this dust collects on everything and builds up over time. This creates heat buildup on an air cooled engine and reduces the life of the engine. The same thing happens with the transmission.

Use a leaf blower or compressed air to blow the dust off your engine, transmission, body, frame and deck after each mowing.

The dust will get into the deck system and damage bearings, pulleys and linkages. When you clean your deck, it may be necessary to use an air chisel to get the dust/grass mixture from under the deck.

  1. Greased

There are grease fittings on the deck, on the suspension components and the front wheels on most lawn mowers. Be sure to great them more frequently in dusty conditions. The dust will impregnate the bearings on the deck and the wheels. Fresh grease helps push out that dust away from these critical components.

Here is a heavy duty grease for your lawn mower. //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=lawnmowerre02-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B0038U3L28&asins=B0038U3L28&linkId=538c790ca18ecc6faa5a72a862aa3e38&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff“>Lawn Mower Grease

  1. Clean You Lawn Mower

Most people never clean their lawn mower. A good electric or gasoline power washer does a great job. You can even load it up and take it to the car wash for a good deep cleaning. The only precaution is to be careful around carburetors, fuel injection components and computer controlled units.

My Lawn Mower Backfires and Then Dies

The first thing you must find out is if it backfires through the exhaust or the intake or carburetor side of the engine. In a lot of cases it will be on the intake side of the engine. When it backfires, it is sending out raw fuel out the carburetor and the ignition is igniting it and you may see flames come through the air filter or it blows off the air filter box completely. When it blows the fuel out, the combustion chamber has no fuel left in or very little and the engine dies. The same thing can happen in the exhaust.

So obviously we have a timing problem or a valve problem. A set of tests must be done to determine what the problem is. The first test is a leak down test. This will tell you if your valves are leaking and which one is the culprit. It could be both of them causing the problem.

Checking the engines timing is more difficult and requires that the engine be taken apart to see if the timing gear cam or chain has jumped a tooth. But before you go ripping things apart, check the flywheel key to make sure that it is not partially sheered. One some models you have to remove the flywheel to check it, but on most you remove the nut holding it in place and you will see it.

These tests are often out of reach for many home owners because they do not have the test equipment. Check our Locations page for a shop near you for help.

 

My Lawn Mower Leaks Oil And I Cannot Tell Where it is Coming From

Just how in the world can you tell if you have an oil leak on a lawn mower that is now covered in dirt and dust?

When oil leaks out of your lawn mower, dust and dirt quickly adhere to that oil and make it very hard to detect the exact location of the leak. The first thing you must do is to power wash the engine to remove the dirt and debris. You must take special care to ensure that you don’t get water into vital areas such as the carburetor, fuel injection or air filter area.

Now you can run the engine and search for the leaking oil but you must take care if this is a push or self-propelled engine as the blade will be turning.

Another way to look for an engine leak is to apply some dye to the engine oil and then use a black light to find it. The dye is illuminated by the black light and makes finding leaks easier.

If you are still struggling to find an oil leak in your lawn mower engine or need the leak repaired, check out our Locations page for a lawn mower repair shop near you.

One Wheel Turns on My Riding Lawn Mower and the Other Does Not

You are riding along and take a turn while cutting the lawn and the inside tire spins. This is very normal because most riding lawn mowers have a type of limited slip or one wheel drives only.

When mowing on hills or when turning quickly, you soon find out which tire is spinning right away. Some riding lawn mowers have a locking rear end that makes both of the drive wheels turn at once. These would be on a lawn tractor or a compact tractor.

If you feel like your lawn mower should not have only one wheel turning, look in the owner’s manual and see if it gives you the specifications. If it does not list it, contact the manufacturer and speak to Technical Support for expert advice. There are many different type of transmissions so be sure to have the Model and Serial number of your mower so they can easily look it up to see what drive system it has in it.

So if the spinning tire is creating an issue, you may have to adjust your mowing habits and how you mow your lawn to resolve this situation.

If you need professional riding lawn mower repair, visit our Locations page for assistance.

Riding Lawn Mower Blade Stopped Turning

If one blade has suddenly stopped turning, the pulley will stop turning and it will burn up or shred a belt. You might hear a squealing sounds or smell some burning rubber but not always.

A few things can cause the lawn mower blade to stop. The first is a blade strike. A blade strike is when you hit something such as a root or rock. It can bend the blade or push it into the deck.

Another thing that will stop the blade quickly is a stick getting caught in the blade or something gets wound around it such as heavy wire, a dog run cable etc,.

The other problem is the bearings will seize up over time and especially if they need grease and they do not receive it during your routine maintenance.

Sticks can also land on top of the deck and get caught in the belt or the pulley, so be sure to check that area too.

All of these problems are fairly easy to fix and may require that the deck be removed. If this is something that you are not comfortable doing, visit our Locations page for a lawn mower repair shop near you.

The Rear Wheels on My Riding Lawn Mower Don’t Turn

There could be many reasons for this happening, but the first question is “what has changed?”

Did you do anything to the lawn mower such as change the rear tires? Did you pull out the tow rod to move the mower and forgot to push it back in?

Those are a couple of the common problems that we normally see in the shop and they are easy to sort out. When the back tires are changed, some riding lawn mowers such as John Deere what have wheel keys that fall out when you pull the wheel off. You don’t notice until you put the wheel back on and the transmission shaft just spins but the wheels do nothing.

The other thing that happens is the drive belt becomes so loose or it will break. There may be one of two belts depending on the make and model of riding lawn mower. Check those to see what condition they are in.

A linkage could also have broken but this is not very common.

Lastly, the transmission could be low on fluid or it could be broken and needs replaced. The newer plastic transmissions have a lever that can get stuck when a twig or rock gets behind it, so check that as well.

If you need professional riding lawn mower repair service, visit our Locations page for a lawn mower shop near you.