How To Check And Change The Oil On A Lawn Mower With A Briggs & Stratton Engine

Your lawn mower is obviously not an automobile, but you still have to check and change the oil every once in awhile.

Oil gets dirty overtime and needs to be removed from an engine or it could damage parts. Fresh oil is a golden or amber color. But after months of use it becomes black. It happens because heat, dirt, and agitated air gets into the crankcase and they do a number on the oil. When the oil is black it needs to be removed from the engine because its ability to coat and protect engine parts have been compromised.

When To Change The Oil

You should develop a regular routine when it comes to checking and changing the oil. Experts advise that the oil in the crankcase of a Briggs & Stratton engine that powers a lawn mower needs to be changed every 50 hours of operation or at the end of every mowing season.

Furthermore, if the mower is new, then it’s necessary to change oil after the first five hours of operation.

Experts also suggest that you check the oil every time you use the mower. Tough conditions common to a mower including wet grass, heavy dust, high temperatures and rough or hilly terrain can adversely affect the oil requiring an oil change more frequently.

Checking Oil Level

The oil can be checked when the engine is cold. In this state, most of the oil is in the crankcase and thus you get the most accurate measurement.

Changing the oil on a Briggs & Stratton engine of a lawn mower can be achieved in a few easy steps.

Check the oil level using the dipstick to start the process. For the oil level to be proper, the oil level should appear between the two holes on the dipstick. When changing oil, take care not to put too much into the engine. Overfilling can be just as bad as using old oil. It’s essential that you check the oil regularly.

Once you’ve checked the oil and determined that it needs to be changed, you’ll need to drain the oil from the engine. Draining oil on a Briggs & Stratton engine is performed through the dipstick tube, drain plug or with an oil extractor tool. Check your mower’s manual to determine which method applies to your machine.

Removing old oil from a Briggs & Stratton engine.

Steps you take to drain the oil include:

1. Run the mower’s engine for 15 minutes to warm up the oil. This is essential to removing all dirty debris from the engine.

2. Turn off the engine and disconnect the spark plug wire.

3. Drain the gasoline from the mower or place a plastic sandwich bag over the gas tank and secure it by screwing the cap on to the bag. This is necessary to prevent leaking

4. Insert the oil extractor tube and pump the oil out of the engine.

5. Place the old oil into a container.

Now it’s time to pour the new oil into the engine. You should have checked the operator’s manual to learn the proper oil to use in the engine and you should have that oil at hand. Briggs & Stratton suggests that you use SAE 30 oil. This oil can be used in most small engines.

Pour the oil into the crankcase and then insert the dipstick into the tube. Pull the dipstick out to check that the proper amount of oil is in the tube. Once you’ve confirmed that the oil is at the proper level, put in the dipstick and screw down the dipstick cap.

If you had removed the fuel, pour fresh fuel into the tank and then reconnect the spark plug wire.

Always read the engine and equipment manuals before starting, operating, and servicing the engine or any other equipment of your lawn mower. It helps prevent injuries and property damage.

If you’re unsure about changing the oil or performing any other maintenance to your mower, take the mower to an authorized dealer for service.


About Robert Janis

Written by Robert Janis for LawnEq - Your specialists for Lawn Mower Parts and Small Engine Parts. We offer genuine premium OEM parts for Land Pride, Toro and many more dependable manufacturers.