How To Jumpstart A Lawnmower

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Mowing your lawn is one of the easiest and quickest ways to give your garden a boost in terms of health and appearance.  However, lawnmowers can be fallible. 

Modern lawnmowers are complex machines that have lots of moving parts that need to be maintained.  

One of the most common signs that your lawn mower hasn’t been properly maintained is that it won’t start.  When this happens, the most likely cause is that the battery has drained. 

When this happens, you might be wondering whether you can jumpstart the mower.  In this article, we will look at how you can jumpstart your lawnmower.  

How To Jumpstart A Lawnmower

Jump Starting a lawn mower is actually quite simple.  If you have ever jump-started a car or other vehicle before, you will already be familiar with the process.  Below, we have outlined the steps you need to take to jump your lawnmower. 

Materials & Tools

The biggest tool that you will need to jumpstart your lawnmower is a car or other vehicle with a functioning and healthy battery.  The vehicle that you use to jump your lawnmower should be bigger than the lawnmower itself.  

You will also need a pair of jumper cables to connect the two batteries to each other.  It is important to make sure that your cables are in good condition and that the rubber insulation is intact for the full length of the cable to avoid sparks and shocks.  

It is also a good idea to have a cloth to wipe the battery and cables.  Insulated gloves and eye protection should be worn to keep you safe from sparks and electric currents.

Step One: Check The Mower Brake And Battery

The first thing you should do when jumping your mower is to check the mower brake and the battery.  You should make sure that the mower is on a flat surface and that the parking brake has been engaged. 

This will ensure that your mower doesn’t roll away while you are trying to jump it. 

You will then need to locate the battery.  For most mowers, it is positioned beneath the hood or the seat depending on the type of mower you have.  If you are unable to locate the battery, you should consult the user manual for your mower.  

When you locate the battery, you will need to make sure that it is a 12-volt.  Most modern mowers have a 12-volt battery, however, if yours is older and has a 6-volt battery, using a car to jumpstart it will blow the battery. 

In this case, you should use a battery charger for your jump.  

You should also check whether the battery has any leaks or other physical damage to the casing.  If you find any damage, you should not jump the battery.  Instead, you will need to replace it entirely. 

Step Two: Examine The Battery Terminals

It is also important to make sure that you are checking the battery terminals properly before attempting to jumpstart the lawnmower. 

If there are any signs of corrosion or looseness in the terminals the jump won’t start.  You might want to use the cloth to clean the terminals so that you can detect any corrosion on the metal. 

If you do detect corrosion, you can fix this by sprinkling some baking soda onto the terminals and adding a small amount of water.  This will neutralize any acid on the terminals.  

How To Jumpstart A Lawnmower

Step Three: Turn Off Your Car And Pop The Hood

Bring your car close to the lawnmower, but crucially ensure that the two vehicles are not touching each other.  If they are touching, this can cause a short circuit when you are jumping the battery.  

Pop the hood of your car and locate your battery.  This should be clearly labeled and will be located beneath a plastic cover. 

It is important to make sure that the battery in your car matches the battery in the lawn mower.  This should be the case but it is good to check. 

Step Four: Connect The Cables In The Correct Order

Now it is time to connect the cables.  It is important that this is done in the correct order to protect yourself and the batteries.  For this step, you should wear the protective equipment that you have chosen to wear.  

Begin with the red jumper cable, one end of this should be connected to the positive terminal on the lawn mower battery. 

Connect the other end of the same cable to the positive terminal of the car battery.  Make sure that the second end doesn’t touch any metal on your car. 

Connect one end of the black jumper cable to the negative terminal on your car’s battery.  The other end of the black cable should be attached to the metal frame of the mower, away from the fuel tank and battery. 

Do not connect this cable to the negative terminal on the lawn mower battery. 

Step Five:  Fire It Up

Once all the cables have been connected to their respective points, it is time to fire up the ignition.  You should start the ignition of the vehicle that you are using for the jump. 

Then, start the ignition of the lawnmower.  If the lawnmower engine turns over right away, you can leave it running for a few minutes to get some extra charge.  If the jump doesn’t start the lawnmower, your battery may be completely fried. 

Step Six: Remove The Cables In Order

Keep the lawnmower engine running and begin to remove the cables in the right order, this is the exact opposite order of how you connected them. 

Begin by removing the black cable from the metal frame and then from the negative terminal.  Then remove the red cable from the positive terminal on the car and then the lawnmower. 

Step Seven: Fully Charge Or Replace The Battery ASAP

You should fully charge the battery when you get the chance.  This will keep it as healthy as possible.  If the battery cannot hold its charge at all, it will need replacing.

Why A Lawnmower Battery Might Be Dead

The most common reason for a lawnmower battery to have no charge is that the ignition was left on for a period of time without turning the engine over. 

If this is the case it should charge up again just fine.  If the battery won’t hold its charge it is likely at the end of its life. 

Final Thoughts

Jumpstarting a lawnmower is a simple process that can come in handy when you need it.  Having jumper cables on hand is super helpful to make sure you can use the mower again quickly. 

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