Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Cool season grasses like Kentucky Bluegrass, Fescue & Rye
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jessehurlburt
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Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by jessehurlburt »

I've never once cleaned a lawnmower. I recently bought a old super recycler 20463 (1995 model). It was very well maintained and I want to clean and wax it before putting it away for the year. Does normal car wax work? The one I bought has a cast aluminum deck. Also, curious what people use to clean their machines.
Last edited by jessehurlburt on Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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ForsheeMS
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Re: Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by ForsheeMS »

I clean mine often. It's a big investment so I do my best to keep it clean and in good condition. I'm not big on washing a mower with soap and water. Too many bearings and things that can be damaged over time from getting wet. Instead, I blow the mower off with the leaf blower after every mow and once a month or so I'll wipe it down with spray wax to remove the dust, dirt and grass stains the blower didn't get off. I'll normally wax all painted metal surfaces a couple times a year with regular automotive wax. Takes less than an hour to wax the whole mower and mine is a large zero turn. Most of the time my mower looks brand new.

Green
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Re: Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by Green »

I do some basic rough cleaning...sweep or blow off the top once in awhile, use water through the washout port after mowing damp, weedy, or diseased areas or every few mows (but not so much to make it rust faster, and I always run it for a few minutes to warm it up after and get rid of as much of the water as I can). Sometimes I use the hose with a hard spray, even though you're not supposed to. Occasionally I'll scrape the bottom. No time to wax anything...maybe if I had a better mower. Haven't even had time yet to wax the car before Winter, but need to do so...takes forever. I do wax the show shovels, otherwise, everything sticks. I thought of repainting the underside of the mower, but realized I would never get it clean enough first, so changed my mind.
Last edited by Green on Mon Oct 22, 2018 12:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Front: Northern mix - mostly TTTF, KBG, TTPR. Back: Firecracker and Bullseye TTTF with America, Rugby 2, Bewitched KBG. Upper Side: Mostly TTPR, KBG. Lower Side: similar to front. Low-input: TF/FF, KBG, PR. Always seeding somewhere or fighting Triv.

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kaptain_zero
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Re: Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by kaptain_zero »

Just keep the pressure washer away from your mower and as others have suggested, let it run a few minutes after rinsing off with water to dry out any bearings were water may have gotten into.

Any regular automotive wax product is fine, but it won't "protect" the paint. Micron thin coatings of wax or polymers of any kind will never do a better job of protecting than the paint itself (this applies to cars as well). However, dirt and dust will release easier from a waxed surface than from one that has not been waxed. Dish soap will strip any wax already applied, so use either an automotive specific shampoo of some kind or just water to clean the mower after it's been waxed.

I usually just hit mine with the leaf blower to knock the dust off the top and I attach the water hose to the clean out port and let it run for a minute or two when I'm done mowing which seems to work fine keeping the underside of the deck clean, but as mentioned above, I let it run a few minutes after turning the water off to let it warm up and dry out. I have noticed that if I don't use the clean out port every single time, it won't wash off the dried on stuff and becomes pointless.

Besides keeping the pressure washer away from your mower, I would suggest doing the same when it comes to an air compressor. Compressed air is often at too high a pressure and can blow water past seals if you get too close. The leaf blower on the other hand, is never pressurized enough that it should be a problem.

Lastly, watch out for anything rubber or black plastic. Wax on these will show and it can be a bugger to get it completely off again. Best bet is to use some masking tape to cover those bits so you can wax right up to them.
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silvercymbal
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Re: Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by silvercymbal »

jessehurlburt wrote:
Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:47 am
I've never once cleaned a lawnmower. I recently bought a old super recycler 20463 (1995 model). It was very well maintained and I want to clean and wax it before putting it away for the year. Does normal car wax work? The one I bought has a cast aluminum deck. Also, curious what people use to clean their machines.
You have now proven that I am not alone :) My Greensmaster restoration video shows how I wash power equipment and I have washed a lot of equipment including motorcycles, mowers, power equipment, amphibious cars and more. The important part is using a cleaner that is designed for wiring, paint grease, etc. Most things aren't....

Not sure you will really need the wax but the key is getting the dirt off and renewing plastics. The best product I have ever used is S100 Total Autowash or it's also sold as P21 Motorcycle wash. It is an amazing product. You can check out my video which shows how I wash this greens mower but I do the same for my Walker as well.

Dozens of videos on repairs, maintenance, power equipment & landscaping

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Green
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Re: Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by Green »

kaptain_zero wrote:
Mon Oct 22, 2018 4:52 pm

Besides keeping the pressure washer away from your mower, I would suggest doing the same when it comes to an air compressor. Compressed air is often at too high a pressure and can blow water past seals if you get too close. The leaf blower on the other hand, is never pressurized enough that it should be a problem.
Good tips. I use a hose nozzle set to high blast, and am careful only to hit the metal deck and wheels with the direct spray. Never had any issues, and it's not as strong as a pressure washer anyway.
Last edited by Green on Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Front: Northern mix - mostly TTTF, KBG, TTPR. Back: Firecracker and Bullseye TTTF with America, Rugby 2, Bewitched KBG. Upper Side: Mostly TTPR, KBG. Lower Side: similar to front. Low-input: TF/FF, KBG, PR. Always seeding somewhere or fighting Triv.

Shindoman
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Re: Cleaning and Waxing your mower

Post by Shindoman »

Just wash it a few times with an good car wash soap that has some wax in it. A lot easier than trying to wax all those little nooks and crannies

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