Spring is here and summer is fast approaching. You're getting out your gardening tools from the shed and you grab the greatest tool a homeowner could have: your mower. It's your tried and true, your right-hand man... but it's also 10 years old and currently covered in three layers of old grass and spider webs. Is it finally time to upgrade? Here's a quick guide.
1. If Your Mower is More Than 8 Years Old
This may seem like a silly question, if your mower works then it works right? Well, maybe not! Even the best mower in the business will only last you about 10 years, and those last 4 or 5 can be trying. If you find yourself having to go over patches or replacing parts quicker than normal, your mower might just be too old! Although it seems easy and cheap to grab some parts every few weeks, that money can add up and you may only make it one more summer or so. If your mower is causing you trouble and is more than 8 years old, it is definitely time to upgrade.
2. If the Motor is Broken
Sounds self explanatory, right? While broken cables and pulled belts can be a pretty cheap fix, internal damage is not. Most of the time the cost of replacing a broken rod or piston is worth more than buying a new lawn mower all together. It may only cost a few hundred more to buy a new mower completely.
3. If There's Crankshaft Damage
Crankshaft damage happens when the blade of your mower hits something hard, like a rock or other debris. This could mean some serious cash to fix the mower. You may be able to tell that your mower has crankshaft damage if it is vibrating excessively. Taking it to a pro to get it checked out is always worth it. Even if they don't fix it on the spot, they can tell you if the damage is worth fixing or the mower is worth ditching.
4. You've Moved to a Different Terrain
Not all mowers are made equally. Your push mower may have been top of the line for your small, flat backyard. However, a new move could mean a new mower. You have to make sure you consider your lawn when deciding to change mowers. Here's a simple guide to help with your decision:
- Push Mower: These small lawn mowers are powered by you and you alone. Don't get it wrong, though. These mowers are now state-of-the-art and with a newer model, you should be able to push with little to no effort! If you have a small, flat patch of grass to mow, this is your go-to.
- Zero Turn Mowers: These mowers are best for large backyards with obstacles . The benefit of the zero turn feature means you won't miss any spots while turning to avoid trees, flower pots, and other lawn obstacles. Plus, these days they come with steering wheel grips for ease!
- Lawn Tractors: Not only are they quick and easy, like the zero turn mowers, but you can also add attachments. Easily add a vaccum or tow cart behind these mowers, as well as winter attachments for plowing. This option would be good for people with large yards and driveways in colder weather regions as it is both your plow and mower!
You May NOT Need a New Mower If...
If none of the aforementioned issues describe you, keep chugging along! There are some simple maintenance tasks you can do to help ensure your mower stays intact longer. Keep your mower running smooth with yearly oil filter and spark plug changes, along with blade sharpening. Doing simple tasks like this are much less expensive than a new mower.