Spring is slowly spreading across the country as rain showers signal the grass to grow and flowers to bloom.
Be sure to bring your mower out of winter storage and properly prepare it and your lawn for your first mow of the season.
If you properly prepared your Bad Boy Zero-Turn mower for winter then your mower preparation should be little more than filling the tank with fresh gas, checking the oil levels and firing it up. If you didn't prepare your mower for winter there are a few things you can do to get your zero-turn mower back to optimal operating condition.
Untreated gasoline allowed to stand for over a month may form a varnish on the inside of the fuel tank, carburetor and other fuel system surfaces. You should drain the tank of any old gas and then fill the tank with fresh gasoline and a gasoline stabilizer. Stabilized fuel will treat the surfaces of the fuel system and help any gaskets and seals that have dried over the winter season. After adding the stabilized fuel it is recommended that you run the engine until it is warm to ensure that the treated fuel is circulated throughout the entire fuel system. Then you are free to continue with the remaining maintenance tasks.
Changing the oil in your mower prevents dirt and other particles from building up inside the engine and causing on-going damage.
Inspect the spark plug to make sure it is clean and gapped properly. Replace the spark plug as necessary to keep your engine firing strong.
Lubricating the cylinders helps get them ready for their first job of the year. Injecting oil through the spark plug hole is an easy way to lubricate the cylinder. Pour a couple of ounces of engine oil into the spark plug hole, then turn the engine over a few revolutions to spread it evenly throughout the cylinder.
After going through this basic maintenance check-list your Bad Boy Zero-Turn Mower should be ready to tackle anything that Spring can throw its way. Check out our Mr. Know-It-All help section for help completing any of these basic mower maintenance tasks.
After a long winter your lawn will need a little attention to prepare it for summer. Properly taking care of your lawn in spring will make sure it is ready to handle the high temperatures that are coming in a few short months.
Proper spring fertilization of your lawn will help make sure your lawn can grow strong throughout the year. You should fertilize your lawn during early spring, sometime from February to April. This gives the grass a nutrient boost that it needs after winter dormancy and promotes healthy root growth and energy for early growing. Fertilize again in late spring, May to June, to keep your grass strong for the high growth the grass experiences at this time.
Watering your lawn too early can cause the grass to weaken since it doesn't have to put forth effort to grow. Waiting until the heat of spring and early summer begins to wilt the grass will tell the grass to grow deeper roots so it can properly weather summer heat spells. When your lawn does require water, don't over do it. You should water your lawn once a week giving it roughly an inch of water.
The first mow of spring should be determined by the height of the grass. Mowing too soon can injure the grass and stall root growth as the grass has to expend more energy to recover. Also, never mow your grass too short. Removing more than a third of your lawns total height will stress the grass and can lead to root weakness as the grass fights to recover. Using a dull blade will also damage your grass. A dull blade will rip the grass more than cutting it, leaving jagged edges that can allow disease and pests to infect your lawn easier. Be sure to mow in a different pattern each time you mow your lawn too. Changing your route will keep the thatch from the clippings from building up too much in any one area and help keep water draining properly into the soil.
Properly caring for your grass in this early season and mowing with the proper technique will help your lawn grow strong and endure the harsh conditions of summer. A nice bed of grass and a well maintained mower will keep your lawn looking its best throughout the entire year!