Mowing your lawn in cold weather is a tough task. Not only can it be difficult for your mower to start, but the performance of the mower can be compromised. Here are some tips for getting your mower to start in the cold, and maintaining it so that it runs successfully:
Cold weather saps oil flow
In the cold weather, your oil flow becomes much slower. For this reason, you really want to make sure that you keep more oil in the tank than you might during the summer months. To test the oil level, lift your dipstick out of the oil reservoir. Make sure to refill it to a high level, especially if you have a substantial mowing job.
What to do if your mower won’t start
Cold weather is notorious for making it difficult to start lawn mowers. Even in relatively mild temperatures of 50 degrees or so, you may find it hard to start your mower. If you’re having trouble starting it, the first thing you should do is check your oil level. If you have enough oil, you want to examine your spark plug. The spark plug really needs to be replaced on a yearly basis, so if you’ve had yours for more than a year, make sure to replace it. Keeping your mower clean will also go a long way toward helping your mower start in cold weather. Clean the spark plug with a brush to remove any carbon or oil debris. You also want to make sure that your air filter is clean, so scrape the debris from it and change it if necessary.
(Note: this website gives additional info on cold weather lawn mowing.)
It is important that your gas is not too old. If your lawn mower won’t start and the gas inside is from last fall, try changing the gas. Finally, another handy tip is to warm up the carburetor. To do this, place a 60-watt light bulb up close to the carburetor, making sure not to burn it. If you have a warm, clean mower with fresh gas and a new spark plug, you’ll be all set for all manner of cold weather.