Tips on Troubleshooting a Ride on Mower
At the beginning of the grass-cutting season there are always a few checks to carry out on your ride on mower to avoid later problems – or, indeed, to remedy those already present. Before starting, always check the manual you received when you bought your mower. If you no longer have it, check out the relevant website page of the company you bought the mower from; they should be able to help you. Safety should be your primary concern when troubleshooting a ride on mower. For every check, make sure you perform the necessary safety precautions, and then do the following to troubleshoot any problems.
If your mower doesn’t want to fire up, inspect the spark plug and the spark plug wire. Gap the plug accurately, and fix it in correctly. If there is still no spark, the problem may be the points if it is an older machine or an ignition module on a newer machine.
If this is the first time you have started your mower this season, take particular care when fuelling it up. Ensure the carburettor gets enough fuel to run. Tap the side of it to take out the float. It is a good idea to also change the oil filter.
Remember, the mower needs to be on a level surface to check the oil. This is especially important if it is a 4-stroke engine. Add oil if necessary, making sure that you do not overfill. You don’t want to see smoke coming out of the engine when you’re driving along.
The battery will undoubtedly need to be charged; you might even need a new one if you have had the mower for some time. Make sure you tighten the cables if they are loose and clean the battery posts if necessary.
Making sure you have disconnected the spark plug so the machine doesn't accidentally start, check the undercarriage. If the mower is missing a flywheel key, it won't start. While you are there, check the blade shaft and blades. If they are bent, replace them. If they don’t need replacing, clean them and sharpen them if necessary. With the blades removed, look for a clogged deck in the undercarriage and remove any lingering debris with a long screwdriver. Finally, replace the blades and tighten them securely.
It may be that you need spare parts – blades, filters, spark plugs. Again, check the website of the company you bought your ride on mower from; they should have a sales page listing all the spare parts available for your model.
Carrying out these maintenance checks will, not only make trouble-free mowing more likely, but they will also prolong the life of your mower. You may feel, though, that you can’t face overhauling your mower before you even start your mowing. After all, you might not have the right tools or know-how. So why not have your mower serviced professionally? That way your mind is easy and you are pre-empting any future problems or need for troubleshooting.
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