When to Replace Lawn Mower Or Should You Just Repair?

Your lawn mower stops working, and you go ahead and replace it!

Unfortunately, this is not how a lawn mower works. A lawn mower does not just quit the job announcing that it is done functioning. 

The death of a lawn mower is a long and slow process with many grey areas only to confuse its owner.

Again it also depends on the tolerance level of the individual. While some may bring back an old and dragging mower many times for repair, others would want to get rid of it as soon as they notice a single sign of trouble.

The problem of when to replace a lawn mower arises when you are hanging on the fence, undecided whether to take it for repair or discard and replace it.

Things to ponder over 

  • Does it seem that your lawn mower is struggling to function?
  • Is your lawn suffering because of your lawnmower’s poor performance?
  • Has your lawn mower already crossed 10 years of service?
  • Do you use the mower often? 
  • What kind of climate is your lawn mower exposed to? 
  • What is the size of your lawn?

The above are some vital things that you need to be aware of. But before you head out to the shop to rent one or decide to purchase a new one understand the typical problems that a lawn mower may show, shouting out that it needs replacement.

Standard problems with a Lawn Mower indicating a replacement

We have listed below a few common problems that are common with most lawnmowers. These are an indication that your lawn mower is close to its end, and repairing it further may not be a smart decision after all.

Issues with transmission

Suppose your lawn mower is old and has problems with the transmission. It is expensive to repair the transmission, which can cost over $500 to replace. It would be a waste of money to repair the transmission only to see your mower give additional trouble in a few days. In that case, it is wise to invest in a new lawn mower adding just a bit more money to the transmission replacement cost.

Problems with the engine

The problem with your lawn mower engine is a red signal that your lawn mower may struggle to perform. If the engine blows away, then it usually is the death of the mower. Repairing the engine may end up costing you more than replacing the mower. The engine motor could end up costing you around $600, which makes it a smarter move to get a new mower altogether.

Damaged crankshaft

A crankshaft works to covert the down and the up motion of the engine’s piston in a rotational or circular motion. The crankshaft gets damaged when it strikes a tree stump, rock, or hard object. If the crankshaft gets damaged, then the mower stops and fails to restart. The blade also does not rotate properly as it is bent. Repairing the crankshaft is costly, and in this case, investing in a new mower may be the ideal option.

Lawn Mower not under warranty

Lawnmowers came with a warranty, but it is applicable only for the first few years. Once the warranty period is over, it gets expensive to repair the lawnmower parts.

It is ideal for a lawnmower to function to its optimum capacity, post which trouble and repairs creep in seven to ten years. If it is just the broken cable or the belts, then these are easy and less expensive to replace. However, if the lawnmower has mechanical issues or if the mower breaks down completely, then replacing the parts turn out to be more costly than replacing the mower altogether.

The mower breaks down often

If your machine is breaking down continuously, then it may not be worth repairing it over and over again. The repairs may be minor, but if these are repetitive, it is a headache. In this case, you may want to throw off the mower and buy a new one.

Difficult to fix the lawn mower

Your mower may have easy-to-fix issues, letting your machine running smoothly for many years. Things like a dirty spark is one of the symptoms of a bad solenoid on riding lawn mower which prevent the mower from starting, but it is inexpensive and fast to repair. Old fuel is another issue common with mowers that are easy to fix.

If you are confused about the problem source, such as sputtering, then take the mower to a repair shop to let a professional look at the machine and explain the trouble. This can let you decide whether to fix the issue or replace it altogether.

Wish to upgrade

Your lawn mower may not have turned faulty still, but it is old and outdated. You look at the recent version with luxurious features that make mowing easy. New models save fuel which can save money in the long run.

Sometimes it is just fine to replace the mower for no other reason but because you wish to buy something that can make your work fast and easy.

Spotting the problem with your Lawn Mower

Lawnmowers can develop their potential problems depending on how long you have used the mower and what you use to drive the mower.

Spotting the problem with your mower early can be a decision-maker between fixing the mower part or to replace the machine.

You, however, need first to understand what to look for. Your lawn mower may run but with less efficiency taking extra time to cut the lawn. Some key things to look out for are:

  • Loss in power in the middle of mowing
  • Trouble in starting
  • Blades not cutting well as in the past
  • Harsh vibrations from the mower

Understanding the root cause of the problem is important, which differs on the basis of how the mower is powered. A petrol-powered mower has many parts, and you need to check them to diagnose the issue. If the petrol mower fails to start, there could be trouble with the spark plug, the air filter, or the carburetor, which is not a part of the battery or the electrical machines.

If it is an electric mower, then it could be the cable that is causing the issue. The cable could get frayed, which is causing a loss in power. Usually, the problem with an electric mower could be a fault in its extension cable. Test the mower in a different plug, and if it still fails to start, then this could be a problem of a blown a fuse and not of the spark plug. You may then want to purchase a replacement cable.

Regular maintenance to avoid the frequent breakage

Prevention is cheaper, and with regular maintenance, you can delay if not totally avoid replacing the lawn mower. Here are a few things that you should do regularly to keep your mower in a tip-top position.

  • If it is an electric mower that runs on cable, then ensure that it is not frayed. If the electric mower runs on battery, then clean the connecting pins regularly.
  • Store the lawn mower components like the battery away from metal containers to avoid the chances of a short circuit. Extreme heat and cold also degrade the charge holding capability of the battery.
  • Change oil each year if you own a petrol mover. Also, check the various components to ensure that they are not worn and are clean.
  • Remove petrol from the tank at the end of the season. Petrol has a 2-3 months’ shelf life, and if left in the tank, it gets stale, causing harm to the engine creating issues with starting the mower.
  • The ventilation slits should be clean to avoid the machine from getting overheated when it is operated.
  • Keep the blades clean by removing residues and grass, so nothing gets caught in the blade, letting the mower collect the neatly chopped grass easily. Remove soil and grass from the blade to not let the blade rust and, in turn, offer maximum cutting efficiency in the next mow.
  • If the mower is vibrating more than it normally does, then tightening the blade bolt should help.

Even after trying the above remedies, if there is still trouble with the mower, then it is time to think about whether to repair or replace the mower.

Repair or Replace – The debate

Normal wear and tear or technical issues are a clear indication that your lawn mower needs a change. Take a look at your lawn, and if you notice that its size or shape has changed or find it difficult to mow using the lawn mower, then these are a signal to bid goodbye to your mower.

If you notice your lawn mower faltering, check the manual to see a straightforward solution to troubleshoot the problem. If you cannot fix it, then here arises the question of repairing or replacing it.

If repairing seems to be a viable option, then go ahead with it. But suppose the mower is old, and repairing it seems to be a regular affair. In that case, you are better off replacing the mover and purchasing a brand new one.

Replacing your lawn mower, however, is not an easy decision. You have used your mower for years, and it has stood by you as a reliable accomplice letting you always flaunt a neatly cut lawn. But when it suddenly stops working, then ask yourself what the right step to take is.

If the cost of repair is more than the replacement cost, then you have the answer already. Also, keep in mind that the engine is a crucial part of the machine, and when that starts giving trouble, there should be no second thoughts about replacing the mower.

About Jennifer Igra

Growing up in Brooklyn, New York City known for it’s green gardens. Jennifer, a 30 year old gardener and green living fanatic started Igra World to share her gardening journey and increase gardening awareness among masses. Follow Igra World to improve your gardening skills.

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