How to Start a Riding Lawn Mower

. October 28, 2017 . 0 Comments

How to Start a Riding Lawn Mower

Lawn mowers are a must have for anyone who has a big yard and wants to maintain its beautify without having to hire a professional to do the job for them. Riding a mower not only saves you time but its fun to ride as well. Granted that riding lawn mowers are more expensive than the traditional mowers, they do provide a user with incredible advantages that you would otherwise not get while using a conventional mower. These machines allow you to not only trim your grass in a short period of time, but they are also able to cut around trees, shrubs and so much more. Furthermore, you’ll be able to enjoy clipping your overgrown grass whenever you deem fit – be it during a boring afternoon or in the morning hours. Simply sit atop your mower, crank the engine on, and proceed to clipping grass and shrubs. Your lawn will be beautifully manicured in less than 20 minutes.

Types of Riding Lawn Mowers

These machines not only provide a simple and effective method of cutting grass but they are also fuel efficient. This means that your device is armed with larger fuel capacity than that of a push mower or even an electric starter. Aside from this, they are also highly versatile as they are not designed only to cut grass. You’ll be able to tackle many more chores thanks to their attachments and their adjustable features. Cut your grass, mow soil, spread seed and fertilizer, or even haul feed to your livestock. Lawn mowing does not have to be a boring task – you can include your family and allow your older child to sit on your lap and take over the wheel. As your child grows older, mowing the lawn can become a weekly chore. Sit on your deck with a glass of lemonade and watch the joy of your teenage child as they control this powerful machine and trim any overgrown grass.

Furthermore, these devices are super easy to handle and operate. In this review, we will show you how to start a riding lawn mower as well as how to operate it for best results. As mentioned earlier, there are different models available on the market. When hunting for a new riding lower, we would recommend that you look out for a brand that also sells spare parts to local stores across all States. It can be incredibly frustrating to have no access to spare parts – imagine having to order a spare part from Amazon or a seller and wait for a week before it’s shipped to you. By then, you’ll have gotten fed up with the overgrown shrubs and either used a machete or hired a professional to tackle the chore. This will not only be tiring but also time and money consuming. This is why it’s best to buy a machine with easy-to-find spare parts.

This way, you’ll be able to find replacement parts quickly in case your machine ever breaks down on you. Some brands do not have replacement parts readily available to customers – a user is required to preorder spare parts from the manufacturer in advance and store these elements in their garage for later use. However, most riding lawn mower parts are easy to find, which is why most users are attracted to them.


Product Name



Carburetor Spray Cleaner

Gumout 800002230 Carb and Choke Cleaner

4.5 / 5

It’s our top pick as it’s highly affordable, performs exceptionally well, and the container is 16 Ounce.

GC15 Carburetor & Choke Cleaner

4.2 / 5

Works pretty well and it’s a great option for anyone working with a tight budget – 12.5 Oz

Riding Lawn Mower Oil

Briggs & Stratton 30W Engine Oil

4.7 / 5

Affordable, versatile (it can be used with other machines at home) – 48 Oz

Poulan Pro Lawn Mower Engine Oil 30W

4/ 5

Fast Free Shipping, works well with lawn mowers – 20 Oz

Quick Tips

Almost all riding mowers are powered by electricity. From a simple ignition switch, your powerful machine will kick into actions. If you are a first time user, then you might find that you do not know the proper steps to follow before turning the ignition key on. The highlighted steps to follow might differ slightly based on different manufacturers, but the basic layout is almost the same. Have you ever tried turning the ignition system on and your mower did not kick into life? If the answer is yes, then you might need to do a few checkups to diagnose the problem.

This tends to happen especially if you are operating an old mower that has not been in use for more than a month. What you need to do is:

v Change out the old fuel

The tank is either located under your seat or in the front of the mower. Some models do come armed with a fuel gauge, but it’s advisable to check the tank as well. Ensure the tank is ¾ full and not leaking. If you haven’t used your mower for more than a month, drain out the old fuel and put in fresh gas. This is because old gas tends to clog up mowers.

v Check oil level

The oil valve is located near the engine. Using the dipstick attached to the oil tank’s cap, check to see if there is any oil. If the oil looks black, replace it immediately. Engine oil is relatively easy to find and it’s affordable as well. It’s better to just put in fresh oil rather than risk clogging your machine with old oil.

v Check spark plug

Can you spot those electrical wires that connect to the side or front of your engine? This is the spark plug. Using a pair of pliers, wiggle the wires free and continue to brush off any dirt or debris using your hands. If the plug is rusty, replace it. Simply visit a hardware store or head on to Amazon for a spark plug – remember to have your model’s number on hand.

v Check air filter

When your mower operates for some time then stops, there might be an issue with its airflow. Undo the spark plug and proceed to open up the engine. Locate a chamber shaped like a cylinder and look inside it. Remove any grass clippings, dirt or any other debris that might be interfering. NOTE: The filter can actually be removed and washed with lukewarm water and some liquid detergent.

v Clear out the fuel filter and carburetor

Remove engine cover and locate the fuel line that leads from the tank to the engine. The carburetor is that bowl-shaped unit connecting to the fuel line. Using a carburetor spray cleaner (which can be purchased from any hardware store), sprat this part to remove any old fuel or debris that might be blocking the lines.

v Check battery

A dying battery will interfere with your mower’s performance. The battery is located either under your seat or in the hood. You can use a voltmeter to test whether your battery is still producing juice. NOTE: Always have your mower’s model number when purchasing spare parts.

Guide on How to Start a Riding Lawn Mower

Now that you’ve checked all the specs and ensured your machine is ready for operation, it’s time to get started.

Ø Step 1: Hop on

Position yourself firmly in the seat and check whether you are able to reach all pedals and levers. Next, using your left foot, press the brake/clutch lever located on the left bottom side of your device.

Ø Step 2: Engage Parking Brake

Set the parking brake using the knob located on your right side. Location of the parking brake tends to vary but it should either be a lever or a knob located somewhere on your right side. NOTE: If you can’t find a brake knob, try engaging the parking brake by pushing down the brake pedal. Some brands come inclusive of a built-in safety system that cuts off engine unless you have engaged the parking brake or you are seated.

Ø Step 3: Shift to Neutral

Gear shift lever is mostly located near the steering wheel but can sometimes be found below your seat. Shift lever into “N” for neutral. For anyone operating a machine without parking brake knob, you’ll be required to hold down the brake as you shift gears.

Ø Step 4: Position Throttle Lever

The throttle lever is typically next to your seat on the left side. Position throttle lever between the fast and slow setting – this is known as the “Choke” position. Most throttles can be identified by the icon images of a rabbit (fast) and a turtle (slow).

Ø Step 5: Insert Ignition Key

Now, it’s time to insert your key in the ignition switch. Depending on the manufacturer, the ignition switch will be located either on your mower’s dashboard in front of you, or next to your seat.

Ø Step 6: Turn the Key

Once the key is inserted, turn it all the way to the right and your engine will kick into motion – starting a lawn mower is quite similar to starting up a car. Hold the key in this position for about 15 seconds to allow your engine to warm up. If you live in cold areas, then you may have to hold the key for longer – instead of the 15-seconds, just hold the key until engine kicks to life.

Ø Step 7: Move Throttle Lever to “Fast”

Back to the throttle lever you go. Release the choke by moving lever upwards towards the rabbit image. Let the engine warm up for a few seconds then begin driving.

Final Thought

Learning to ride a mower is an art that when well mastered, will deliver exceptional results. Once you learn all the tricks and tips, you will be able to do so much more with your machine other than clipping grass. The accessories are available online, and some can even be purchased from local hardware stores. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to leave us your queries below and we shall get back to you as soon as possible.

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