Snow has already fallen in almost all 50 states except Hawaii, Louisiana, and Florida. If you haven’t already started getting your garage or shed prepared for winter – it’s time. Here are some tips to keep your gas-fueled lawn equipment ready for storage as the winter season is just around the corner.
Many people are caught unprepared each year when winter hits. One of the most expensive lessons you can avoid is properly caring for your power tools and lawn equipment so they don’t get damaged by the cold weather. Most people discover their error in the spring when they go to use these items and they work less-effectively because of the damage they received by not being taken care of in the winter – and all it would have taken was a little preventive maintenance. Fortunately, we have some tips that will help you prepare your power tools and lawn equipment for the upcoming winter season.
One of the costliest pieces of equipment to fix is our lawnmowers. Though it is recommended that you replace your lawnmower every six years, you might end up replacing it more often if you do not take winter storage precautions into account. However, follow these simple steps and you can make sure it is taken care of now so it can be stored well during the winter.
1. Make sure to clean all the debris and mud from the body and blades before you store it
2. Sharpen the mower’s blade when you get a chance
3. Empty out gasoline in the lines and the tank so it doesn’t separate or corrode
4. Change the oil
5. Disconnect the spark plug
6. Change the air filter
7. Lubricate any exposed cables
Lastly, keep items such as fertilizers, chemicals, and cleaners away from the lawnmower while it’s in storage. This can cause your lawnmower to corrode prematurely.
While people have varying opinions about storing fuel, saying that adding a stabilizer to existing gas will help preserve it over the winter months, there have also been reports that keeping fuel in the engine can lead to deposits that can become oxidized and potentially ruin the mechanics of your equipment. We think it’s better to be safe than sorry come spring since the small savings don’t outweigh the risks. Saving a few dollars on gas in December only to have to pay for a new lawnmower come spring doesn’t seem worth it when you can spend a few bucks to fill up a new tank come your first mow in spring.
Though chainsaws can be used year-round, they are not often utilized as much during the winter months unless you use it to cut firewood which can be difficult to cut and haul tree branches when there is an abundance of snow everywhere. However, there are maintenance tips we suggest if you are going to use a chainsaw during the winter months to make sure it stays in good shape.
1. Utilize high-octane winter fuel without ethanol and likely a fuel stabilizer to protect your chainsaw’s engine
2. Replace the spark plug if necessary
3. Examine your chain for any weaknesses that need your attention, and always keep a spare chain on hand in case you need to replace it
These are some of the most common pieces of power equipment used during the winter months so it is important that you keep it working properly.
1. Always test the equipment before the winter season starts to ensure that it is working properly
2. Like the chainsaw, utilize high-octane winter fuel without ethanol and likely a fuel stabilizer to protect the engine
3. Make sure that you keep spare parts around in case your snow blower malfunctions
4. Lubricate and bolts, clips or parts that may need it
Winter is just around the corner and the cold and snow can be detrimental to power equipment. Failure to protect your power equipment could lead to costly repairs down the line, but a little preventive maintenance can go a long way. Use our guide to keep your equipment safe this winter so they continue to function properly in the spring when you need them the most!