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October 23, 2014
3 min read time

Fall and Winter Lawnmower Maintenance Tips for Your HOA

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If your HOA community has lots of grassy common grounds, a lawn mower is a crucial piece of equipment for keeping up with grounds maintenance. In many states, the weather is warm enough in early autumn for grass to still need mowing. However, even if you live in a cold climate where lawnmowers will soon be retired for the winter, the fall and winter lawnmower maintenance tips below will help you get your community’s lawnmowers ready for spring.

Fuel System Maintenance

HOA management companies that maintain HOA lawn equipment on behalf of a community often begin lawnmower maintenance with the fuel system. A stabilizer is added to the fuel tanks, and the equipment is run for roughly five minutes to circulate the stabilizer through a lawnmower’s system. Adding a stabilizer helps keep the fuel systems of mowers ready for action at any time.

Piston Maintenance

Mowers with 2-cycle motors should have the starter rope pulled until resistance is felt, then slowly released to close the intake and exhaust ports of the machinery. This prevents moist air from entering the piston cylinders and corroding them while the equipment is stored away for the cold season. Pistons drive a lawnmowers’ motor, so maintaining them is especially important.

Mowers with 4-cycle motors should have the spark plug removed and a tablespoon of oil placed in the spark plug hole. Then the engine should be rotated several times by pulling on the starter rope. If the equipment is being retired for the winter, wait to connect the spark plug wire to the engine until spring arrives. This will help prevent the spark plug wire contact from corroding.

Air Filter Replacement

A lawnmower with a clogged air filter often has problems starting. Because mowers kick up lots of dust as they cut grass on hot, dry days, replacing the filter annually is a good idea, especially if the mowers are used several days a week. Keeping the air filter clean will help prevent you from needing to pull the starter rope multiple times until the engine finally engages and starts.

Battery Recharging

Before a lawnmower is stored away for winter, its battery should be fully charged. Over the winter months, the battery of a lawnmower can slowly lose its charge. Fully charging the battery should prevent it from dying and make it ready to supply power to the mower when spring arrives. If the battery’s lifespan has expired, install a new battery instead of charging the old one.

Part Replacement

If a lawnmower has worn or broken parts, the end of autumn is an excellent time to replace them. If your community does not have maintenance workers who are experienced in maintaining and repairing lawn equipment, a provider of HOA management services can connect you with a reputable vendor that specializes in lawn equipment repair and maintenance.

Clean Equipment

During the warm months, regularly used lawnmowers gather dust and debris in various places, particularly above the cutting deck and underneath it, on the motor housing, and around wheels and wheel bearings. Most lawnmowers can be cleaned of lawn debris by using a garden hose. Thick, matted accumulations of debris may need to be removed with a pressure washer.

Lubricate Equipment

After a lawnmower has been thoroughly cleaned, it should be lubricated according to the owner’s manual. Be sure to lubricate a lawnmower only after it has been cleaned, as this will prevent some of the lubrication from being washed away and make it easier to lubricate areas that may be covered by accumulations of lawn debris. Once this is done, the equipment is ready to be stored.

After Maintenance is Complete

After your community’s lawnmowers have received the maintenance measures above, it is important to store them in a clean, dry location that is inaccessible to everyone but maintenance workers and board members. When storing mowers, it is a good idea to cover them with a tarpaulin to prevent a layer of dust from settling on sensitive parts. For assistance maintaining your planned community’s lawn equipment, contact RealManage today.

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