Proper storage for your lawn mower allows the machine to stay in tip-top condition throughout the seasons. If you’re storing your mower over an extended period, such as winter, you may struggle to find a solid space to keep it.
Should you put it in the garage, shed, or basement, or leave it outside? How should you store your mower to ensure it remains safe and ready for work? This guide discusses lawn mower storage options, including preparing your mower for winter storage.
Lawnmower Storage: Quick Summary
A lawn mower is a meaningful investment, especially if it’s a riding mower. So, you want to find the best place to keep it in great shape. A garage or shed is the most secure place for storing a lawn mower.
But if you don’t have the two, you can store the mower in your basement or outdoors. Of course, keeping a mower in the basement or outdoors has its downsides.
Before storing your mower, you’ll want to prepare it to ensure it remains safe throughout the storage period. Ensure to remove the battery and clean the deck to remove dirt and debris.
You should also empty the gas tank and disconnect the spark plug. Check the store to ensure it’s cool and dry. Let’s now explore lawn mower storage ideas in detail.
Best Places To Store Your Lawn Mower
The type of lawn mower, storage timeframe, and weather conditions determine the lawn mower storage methods one should consider. For example, if you have a riding lawn mower, you’ll require a spacious garage. This is especially true for larger mowers, such as zero-turn mowers ranging from 48-79” wide.
When storing the mower over a longer timeframe, you’ll want to maximize space to have enough room for other gardening equipment. A large store is also an excellent choice to ensure enough air circulation to keep it cool and dry during winter. This protects your mower against high moisture that can cause rust.
But what if you don’t own a garage? You can keep your lawn mower in good condition by storing it in a shed. Here’s what you should consider for a lawn mower storage shed to offer maximum protection.
Ensure the shed is spacious enough to accommodate your mower. If you have a push mower, a DIY shed measuring 5 feet by 2 feet can work for you. For storing a riding mower, you’ll need a larger shed, such as an 8-foot shed.
Protecting lawn mowers from elements that can cause damage over time is paramount. Your shed should protect your mower against heat, snow, and rainwater.
Insulation is crucial, especially if you own an electric mower. Remember, these types of mowers are not waterproof. In the case of leakage into the shed, water can get into your electric mower and damage the wiring and power delivery system.
Additionally, water or moisture can land on the metal components and lead to corrosion. You also don’t want your shed to allow excessive heat that can damage the engine when the temperature is high. If your shed gets too cold, the battery will likely have problems.
Keeping lawn mowers in an open space can attract thieves. Since these machines are costly – costing upwards of $1,000 – you’ll want to ensure your shed is secure. Burglar-proof your shed by installing a solid door with a security lock.
A good lawn mower storage shed should have reliable flooring to protect the wheels and blades. You also don’t want to experience difficulties moving your mower in and out due to a rough floor.
The blades can get cracked, scratched, or caught if the ground has stones and roots. Install suitable shed flooring to allow an easy wheeling of your mower when moving it in or out.
Storing your mower in a garage or a shed has other benefits besides keeping the mower safe. These places are easy to access, unlike the basement.
When designing your garage or shed, you create a spot for storing the mower. So any time you need to take the mower in or out, you know where to find it.
A garage or shed allows you to keep any mess out of your house. Mowers can take up space in your home and make it look disorderly. Even after cleaning the machines, some clippings and mud might remain on the mower. If you store a mower indoors, you will likely bring this dirt into your home.
Alternative Lawn Mower Storage Options
If you don’t own a garage or shed, you can look for alternative storage for a lawn mower in your home. Below are lawn mower storage options that help keep your machine in good shape.
The basement can be your best option for storing your mower. Like the garage or shed, the basement is secure as you can keep the mower in a sheltered environment. This prevents other people, including thieves, from seeing and accessing your mower.
Additionally, this area protects your mower from extreme temperatures that can harm the engine, plastic, and metal components.
Storing a mower in the basement has a few downsides. For example, moisture build-up can be a problem in your basement. This moisture can damage the wiring system or engine of your mower.
Additionally, you’ll need to carry the mower in and out of your house. If it’s a gas mower, you may cause oil spillage and mess up your home. The basement is also not ideal for storing a riding mower as it is heavy to maneuver it around.
Outdoor (Under a Cover)
If you have a riding mower that can’t be stored in the basement, outdoor lawn mower storage can be the next option. This is safe for homes with fenced yards. The goal is to keep your machine away from prying eyes. You may opt for your backyard, where very few people can access it.
Remember, storing your mower outside does not protect it from extreme temperatures. You can, however, use a waterproof lawn mower cover to keep it safe from rain, excess heat from the sun, snow, and wind. Covering your mower will also keep it dust-free and clean. Dust can penetrate your mower and damage the engine and its moving parts.
Keep your mower in a non-grassy area to offer the blades plenty of breathing room. Allowing grass to make contact with the blades can lead to rusting. If you don’t have a paved section in your yard, a floor mat can help keep your mower safe.
Using a floor mat has other benefits, such as keeping the wheels safe and preventing your yard from oil spillage. So when purchasing a floor mat for your mower, find an oil-absorbent one to ensure any oil spillage doesn’t get to the ground.
Are you still looking for another storage for lawn mower? These can be viable options:
- Container: This can serve as a mini-sized shed. It’s a good option for storing a small, foldable lawn mower.
- Canopy or tent: A canopy or tent can be another option if you live in a region that doesn’t experience extreme temperatures.
How To Prepare a Lawn Mower for Winter Storage
Preparing your mower before storing it can help maintain and increase its longevity. Be sure to incorporate most of these lawn mower storage tips to get the best results.
Remove the Battery
If your mower has a battery, it’s best to remove it before storing it in winter. Sometimes temperatures in winter can go below 32°F, which can harm your battery by reducing its efficiency.
If your garage or shed doesn’t feel safe for the battery, remove it and store it indoors. Find a cool, dry spot away from your fireplace or heaters. Remember, excess heat can also damage the battery.
Before storing it, clean the terminals to remove any corrosion. You can do this with the help of an old toothbrush and baking soda to wipe the terminals. After cleaning, you may use a protector to coat the terminals.
Remove, Clean, and Sharpen the Blade
Locate the bolt that holds the mower blade in place and unfasten it. The blade can be sharp, so you must be careful when removing it. You can wear thick gloves to keep your hands safe.
After removing the blade:
- Wipe or clean it to remove any dirt or grass clippings.
- Inspect the blade to see if it has signs of rust or cracks.
- If it has rusty spots, scrub the rust particles with a steel brush. You can also use a spray such as WD-40 Multi-Use Product to remove the remaining rust particles.
- Use a file to sharpen the mower blade.
Clean the Mower Deck
Clean the deck using a pressure washer or garden hose to remove any mud, clippings, and dust. If clippings won’t come out, scrape them off using a putty knife, wire brush, or screwdriver. Allow the deck dry before storing it. Leaving the deck’s surface wet can lead to corrosion or mold build-up.
After fully drying, apply a silicone spray evenly on the undercarriage. This spray prevents rust and future grass build-up.
Draining the gas is a crucial lawn mower storage tip if you’re putting it in the basement or garage throughout winter. Gasoline left in the mower can be risky in a fire accident. You also don’t want to leave gas in the mower because it can begin to degrade and damage your mower.
You can allow the mower to run until it stops. Then siphon out the remaining gas to ensure the tank is dry.
Add Fuel Stabilizers
Draining the gas tank is ill advised because an empty tank is susceptible to corrosion. On the other hand, leaving too much gas may lead to more problems when gas degrades. Consider adding a fuel stabilizer to the gasoline in your mower before storage.
A fuel stabilizer will extend the gasoline’s life for up to 24 months. After topping up the tank with a stabilizer, allow your mower to run for several minutes. This will circulate the fuel stabilizer through the mower’s fuel system.
Disconnect the Spark Plug
Disconnecting the spark plug prevents your mower from starting up accidentally. You don’t want the mower to start running while cleaning or removing the blade.
After disconnecting the spark plug, inspect it to ensure it’s in good condition. You can clean it or purchase a new one for replacement.
Clean or Replace Air Filters
Before storing your mower, inspect the air filter for dirt or damage. If your mower uses a foam or plastic filter, clean it if it looks dirty. Allow it to dry, and coat it with fresh oil before reinstalling. If your mower has a paper filter, replace it.
Drain and Replace the Oil
Storing your mower with old oil can ruin the engine. This oil may contain acids and moisture, damaging engine parts during the storage season. Follow these tips to remove old oil.
- Run the engine to make the oil warmer.
- Drain the oil and replace it with a fresh one.
- Ensure to check the recommended oil from the manual.
Inspect Drive Belts
If you’ve used the lawn mower throughout the mowing season without checking the drive belts, remember to inspect them before storage.
Check whether they’re loose, cracked, or worn. Tighten them if they’re loose. Replace the drive belts if they look cracked or worn.
Locate grease fittings in your mower and lubricate them before storage. You can use lithium grease or what the manufacturer recommends. Find other moving parts and lubricate them.
You now know the best lawn mower storage options and tips to help keep your machine safe. If you want to keep it in good condition in winter, store it in a garage or shed.
You can also consider other options, such as the basement or outdoors. However, these two options may not guarantee the best safety for your mower. Remember to winterize your lawn mower before storing it. This will allow the machine to return to work without issues in the next mowing season.
Hello! My name is Chris, and I am the founder of Yard Floor. When I was a toddler, my family had a lush green lawn. I was at the center of caring for and maintaining this lawn and even proceeded to take an associate’s Degree in landscaping. I am here to share my years of experience with you – be it repairing your mower/tractor or caring for your lawn.