A riding lawn mower is your best friend when it comes to keeping the garden and lawn in great shape. However, just like your friend, the mower requires constant maintenance to keep functioning at its bests. The best way to maintain your riding lawn mower and increase its life is by cleaning it regularly and carrying out other maintenance routines.
So, can you pressure wash a riding lawn mower? Yes, you can, if anything it is one of the best ways to clean your mower. When working, lawnmowers attract grass, mud, and dirt, which tend to stick to the grass blades and sometimes dry there with time. As such, their build-up can result in trapped dirt or the grass blade rusting which reduces the efficiency of the mower. The best way to get rid of this dried dirt is by applying pressure. This can only be achieved using a pressure washer and not a towel or scrubbing your mower.
Keep reading to find out more about why pressure washers are preferred, how to pressure wash your riding lawn mower, tips on pressure washing it, other methods of maintaining it and other riding lawn mower related questions
Why are Pressure Washers Preferred?
As mentioned above, dirt, grease, and grass tend to stick to the grass blades and over a long time, they dry up. This means, scrubbing your mower or using a cloth to wash it may not get rid of all the stubborn dirt. It is equally tedious to get rid of the stubborn dry dirt. This is where the pressure washer comes in.
Pressure washers are built to release waster at high-pressure levels that can blast away all types of dirt accumulated. Therefore, with the pressure washer getting rid of the dirt, cleaning is made easier and almost effortless.
Another reason why the pressure washer is preferred is that it can reach the underneath of the mower deck and clean it effectively. Therefore, for the best cleaning results for your riding lawn mower, you may have to invest in a quality pressure washer like this.
How to Clean your Riding Lawn Mower with a Pressure Washer
The following is a step-to-step guide for cleaning your riding lawn mower using a pressure washer
Step 1: Safety Measures
Before cleaning your mower or doing any maintenance work on it, your first concern should be your safety.
To start, make sure you are familiar with all the safety information about operating the lawnmower. Second, move the mower in a well-ventilated area preferably with a hard surface.
Once the mower is in the cleaning space, ensure the parking brake of the mower is engaged. The next step is to remove the ignition key and disconnect the battery. This ensures that the mower stays intact. A riding lawn mower is a heavy machine that can cause great injury if it moves unexpectedly. Therefore, you want to avoid that at all costs.
Another safety measure is to ensure the blades of the mower have come to a complete stop. With that done you can empty the fuel tank or gas of the mower.
Once you are sure you have taken all the above safety measures, put on safety clothes like gloves and you can now start cleaning your riding lawnmower.
Step 2: Access the underside of the mower deck
To access the underside of the mower, use a lift to raise its front into the air. Alternatively, you can roll the mower on its side. For the latter, removing the grass blades is an additional safety measure.
Step 3: Scrape Off Dred Grass and Dirt
Use a blunt bar to scrape off all the dried clumps of grass, dirt, plant roots, and leaves. To make the scraping easier, you can wet the dirt using water.
Step 4: Thoroughly Clean your Mower
Once you have gotten rid of the excess dirt, apply a multi-purpose detergent to the underneath of the mower. Leave the detergent to settle for about 10 minutes. After the ten minutes, use a power washer, a high-powered jet of water, to blast off all the stubborn dirt.
Step 5: Clean the Tires
When the mower is still in the air, use the opportunity to clean the tires using the high-powered jet water.
Step 6: Rinse the underside of the Mower and Tires
Using the pressure washer, run the jet of water, through the mower ensuring all its partsare well rinsed.
Step 7: Clean the Top of the Mower
Roll the mower back on the level ground, wash the top of the mower, and rinse it.
Step 8: Check the Air Filters
Check if the air filters need to be cleaned. For cleaning the air filters, use an air compressor to blow off the trapped debris. After blowing it, deep the filters in water and wash it with soap and water. After washing it, you can rinse the air filters and leave them to dry.
Step 9: Leave the Riding Mower to Dry
After you are done cleaning the entire mower, leave it to dry. Ensure the mower dries completely before using it. Leaving traces of moisture can damage your mower, so you want to make sure the mower is completely dry.
Tips for Cleaning a Riding Lawn Mower using a Pressure Washer
- Make sure you know how to operate a pressure washer. If it is your first time with one, you can ask for guidance from an experienced person. Besides, you can make use of the pressure wash manual to guide you on how to use it.
- Choose a pressure washer from an approved recognized brand for the best results.
- Before turning on the power washer, check to ensure all the connections including inlet, outlet are well connected. Also, look that the power washer is properly connected to the electricity. If the washer uses fuel, ensure it has the desired levels of gas or fuel before powering it.
- Use eco-friendly cleaning solutions for the stubborn stains in the mower. It is recommended you use cleaning solutions to ease the cleaning process
- When using the pressure washer use the nozzle carefully on the sensitive parts of the mower to avoid damaging them.
- Avoid wetting any electrical components of the mower. Wetting these parts may damage your mower.
- Avoid cleaning the bearings of the mower. When the bearings are wet they size up an stop working smoothly.
- It is recommended you wash your mower on a sunny day to expose it to maximum sunlight for it to completely dry.
Other Ways to Maintain Your Riding Lawn Mower
Maintaining your mower will require more than cleaning. The following are general maintenance methods for your mower
- After every mowing session, brush off the mower and the deck. This removes the grass and debris that may have accumulated during mowing. It is especially important to clean area fuel are after mowing
- Check that the shield and deflators of the mower are not damaged. If they are, make efforts to replace them. This is recommended for after every mowing session
- After mowing check the tires to make sure they are in good condition
- Lubricate the pivot points of your riding lawn mower
- Regularly check the blades of the mower to make sure they are in good condition. You can sharpen them to increase their efficiency or replace them altogether.
How regularly should you clean your riding lawn mower?
You should clean your mower as frequently as possible. The recommended rate is after every 2 sessions of mowing. Cleaning is important to maintain your mower and expanding its life. However, maintenance does not stop at cleaning. Therefore, even when cleaning your mower religiously do not disregard the other maintenance procedures.
How can I remove the grass blades from my riding lawn mower?
Removing the grass blades can be for several reasons ranging from a cleaning procedure to sharpening or replacing the blades.
To remove the blade, first observe all the safety procedures highlighted above in the article including putting on protective gloves. Lift the mower to be able to reach its underneath.
Use a block of wood to wedge the blades and make sure they completely stop moving. Once the blades have settled take a picture of how they fixed. This is because it is easy to reattach the blades of a mower wrongly. Therefore, you want to make sure you have a point of reference when reattaching the grass blades.
Using a wrench, unscrew the nut or bolt that holds the blades I position by turning anti-clockwise. Place the nuts or bolts on the ground where you can easily see. With the blades removed, carry on with your maintenance work.
When you are done, refit the blades or replace them. Use the photo you took to reattach the blades this time moving the nuts or bolts in the clockwise direction