If you own a lawn mower, you know the importance of keeping it functional for as long as possible. There are so many aspects of your lawn care that are impacted negatively when you fail to take proper care of your lawn mower, and that goes down to even the most simple parts such as the air filter – which you might forget it exists, yet is always there.
The air filter is among the underappreciated parts of your lawn mower. When it is weak or suffers damage, it blocks the correct flow of air to the carburetor, which ultimately affects the performance negatively. When there is insufficient air flow, the engine overheats – and therefore, the air filter is necessary for proper functioning.
How can you tell there is a problem?
If you notice theirs is a problem with starting your engine, and it is unrelated to the pull cord, it could be the filter. Remove the filter and start the engine again – if it does so without issues – that is the best way to confirm it has a problem. The resolution here is fortunately simple, as you only need to replace or clean the air filter.
How do air filters operate?
For the gas in the engine to ignite and help the mower function, it must have oxygen present. Otherwise, if the air is insufficient in supply, the fuel will not ignite, and the engine remains cold – this leads to gas flooding the engine due to accumulation in the chamber. If you try to switch on the engine again, the gas burns inadequately, and will begin to smoke.
When this happens, the engine starts to sputter and it eventually dies because of the massive congestion. The smoke will also complicate the issue, because it soils the air filter, forcing you to replace it.
A word of caution
If you remove the filter and find that the engine is starting without issues, just keep in mind you need to prevent using the engine for very long when the air filter is absent. This is because the engine will tend to intake air actively, and this even includes some harmful particles such as dust – which can result in breakdowns of the piston seals and the entire engine.
In addition, you should not replace a dirty filter in the engine. Due to the reason of avoiding smoking in the engine, you want to ensure all the inner parts are as good as possible – including using a clean filter.
Tips on resolving issues with the air filter
The good thing about the user manual is that you will find all the information you need to handle the specific parts of the engine, as well as their maintenance. Regarding the air filter, there are specific procedures that you need to follow in cleaning it, as well as the recommended schedule of cleaning. The tools it can recommend include the pre-cleaner, and cooling areas could be another possible solution.
As a general rule, cleaning the air filter is usually after two or three mowing sessions, and you will need to wash the pre-filter after every 25 hours after application.
Remover the filter cover
This is the first step to take, as you want to make sure there is nonstop efficiency regarding the functioning of the mower. However, do this in a clean area, since you do not want dust and dirt to enter the components and risk ruining the machine.
To prevent dirt from entering the engine, a wiping session is enough. Wipe down the area near the cover of the filter, and remove the nuts of the cover carefully (you will re-install them after completing the cleaning process).
You are not just cleaning the filter itself; there are other parts to deal with. The surrounding parts, for instance, also need cleaning of their own, which will prevent dirt into the internal parts of the filter.
Remove this carefully – the usual time you should clean it is when you use the mower for 25 hours, or at least once a year if your mowing sessions are infrequent.
You will need to clean this to ensure higher efficiency, and you remove dirt by tapping it gently on a flat surface. Ensure you take care while doing it, as you do not want to damage it.
For your mower to be in top condition, all its parts need to be in top shape – including the air filter. You might not think much of it, but it helps your mower to run effectively.