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Get Your Push Mower Purring Again: A Guide to Common Repairs

Lawn Mower Repair: Broken Cord | Family Handyman

A well-maintained push mower is a homeowner's secret weapon for a beautiful lawn. But even the most dependable mowers can encounter occasional problems. Before you call a repair service, consider tackling some common fixes yourself. Here's a guide to get your trusty push mower back in top shape:

Safety First: Always disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug before performing any repairs on your mower. This prevents the engine from accidentally starting.

Diagnosing the Problem:

  • Engine Won't Start: This is a common issue. Check for simple solutions first, like ensuring the fuel shutoff valve is open and the fuel tank is filled with fresh gas. A dirty air filter or a fouled spark plug can also prevent starting.

  • Mower Sputters or Loses Power: This could be caused by a dirty carburetor or clogged fuel line. Old gasoline can also lead to sputtering – it's recommended to use fresh gas at the start of each mowing season [Source:].

  • Uneven Cutting: Dull mower blades are a frequent culprit for uneven cuts. Sharpening or replacing the blades can resolve this issue. Uneven tire pressure can also affect cutting height.

Simple Fixes You Can Do Yourself:

  • Replace the Spark Plug: Spark plugs wear out over time. Replacing the spark plug with a fresh one is a straightforward task and can often resolve starting problems. Refer to your owner's manual for the correct spark plug type for your mower.

  • Clean the Air Filter: A dirty air filter restricts airflow to the engine, affecting performance. Consult your owner's manual for cleaning instructions. Depending on the filter type, it might be washable or require replacement.

  • Sharpen the Blades: Sharp blades are essential for clean cuts. You can sharpen your mower blades yourself with a mower blade sharpener following safety precautions. Alternatively, consider replacing the blades if they are excessively dull or damaged.

Repairs Requiring More Expertise:

  • Carburetor Issues: Cleaning or rebuilding a carburetor can be more complex and might be best left to a qualified technician if you're uncomfortable tackling it yourself.

  • Engine Problems: Serious engine issues often require an experienced mechanic to diagnose and repair.

Tips for Maintaining Your Push Mower:

  • Regular Maintenance: Regular maintenance is key to preventing problems and extending the life of your mower. This includes tasks like cleaning the air filter, sharpening the blades, and checking tire pressure. Refer to your owner's manual for a recommended maintenance schedule.

  • Use Fresh Gas: Always use fresh gas at the beginning of each mowing season. Old gas can break down and clog the fuel system.

  • Winter Storage: If you live in an area with harsh winters, properly prepare your mower for storage to prevent damage. This may involve draining the fuel, lubricating components, and storing it in a dry, protected location [Source:].

By following these tips and performing basic repairs yourself, you can keep your push mower running smoothly for years to come. However, for more complex repairs, don't hesitate to consult a qualified lawn mower mechanic.

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