The best lawn mower covers that are water poof

Wednesday, February 27, 2019
best push lawnmower cover

Choosing the best cover for your lawnmower


If you don't have a nice and dry place to store your battery powered lawn mower or you want to store your mower for the long term, a waterpoof cover will help keep the mower free of dust and rust.

It doesn't matter if you have a push or sit on mower, both kinds of machinery can succumb to the elements if not stored under some form of cover properly so it's really important to get some heavy duty cover care.

Have you ever had to replace a spark plug in a mower because it rusted out? Chances are poor storage was in part to blame as it was exposed to moisture.

It also doesn't matter if your grass cutter is a gas or electric powered, both kinds of engines need protection from the elements.

What to look for in a lawn mower cover?

  • Needs to be waterproof to keep moisture off the engine
  • It should be made of heavy-duty, tear-resistant material
  • Easy to take on and off
  • Is a universal fit
  • It is resistant to mold building up
  • Will block UV light radiation
  • Doesn't need to be a brand name, can be generic

Our recommended product is the ToughCover Premium Waterproof Lawn Mower Cover - it meets our criteria and is good value for money:
The ToughCover features a drawstring around the base to help keep everything snug and will help keep it attached should it be subject to windy conditions if stored outside.

If you are planning to store the lawn mower outside, it clearly needs to be resistant to all kinds of weather conditions - water is the obvious one but it's got to be able to keep the wind out as the wind will place dust and dirt on it. In some parts of the country snow is a problem and so the cover needs to be able to keep that out too - especially when the snow melts!

The WeatherPRO is a slightly cheaper cover:


WeatherPRO decree their cover is made with 100% Marine-Grade advanced Polyester material with special co-polymer additives which assures it offers UV protection and water repellency.

A user left a review on Amazon:

"Very nice cover. I had been using a much more flimsy style cover from another source. Seemed like that particular cover would never last more than a few months in the elements, so I searched Amazon and gave this one a try for a change. This one has been on my mover for a few weeks now, and it does a great job covering pretty much the entire lawn mower. Much more coverage than my old cover did.

It also holds up in bad weather much better than any I've had.

We've had several bad thunderstorms, with the covered lawnmower out in the open, and this cover takes torrential rain and heavy wind like a champ. Lawn mower bone dry under the cover even after the bad storms. Amazed by how nice this cover is for the price. Awesome product"

If that spins your wheels, check out the price on Amazon:
Briggs and Stratton and Husqvarna all make covers but remember, you can simply buy generic, one size fits all options at a cheaper price if you want!

What's the best cover for a ride on lawn mower?


Ride on lawn mowers naturally benefit from covers, especially if you don't have a shed or shelter and they need to be left outside. Aside from the weather, ride on covers protect against pollen, bird shit and debris such as pine needles.

All the big brands such as John Deere make them, and so we're featuring Deere's product:

best ride on lawn mower cover
  • Dual vents let air circulate and help prevent ballooning in winds
  • Elastic shock cord in bottom hem for a quick, custom fit
  • Coated fabric for maximum water protection
  • Handy storage pocket reverses into an attractive storage case
  • Fits all 100 - X300 Series riding mowers.
This covers should fit most standard size ride on lawn mowers. If you need a bigger size, John Deere has it

If you are looking for a cover that's more economical, then we're heading back to Tough Cover for their handy product.

  • The Tough Cover is crafted with 600D marine grade fabric and features double-stitched seams for enhanced durability over its long lifetime.
  • The durable fabric cover is designed to suit most common-size lawn tractors with decks up to 54" and to ensure convenient application and maximum protection.
  •  Allows an effective coverage of the entire surface of your riding lawn mower and comes with a practical storage bag for your convenience.
Check out the price on Amazon:

How to choose the best safety gloves for chainsaws

Monday, February 25, 2019
safety gloves chainsaw

Any chainsaw operator will know that they can be bloody dangerous machines to use and it can literally be life and limb when things go wrong.

This is why proper use of safety equipment such as chaps and helmets is so important.

Did you know though, un-gloved hands are one of the most likely parts of the body that get cut by chainsaws?

Especially the left!

This is due to the way chainsaws are held.

And that is why safety gloves are crucial when sawing.

Quick recommendation: If you want the best gloves to protect your fingers, then Husqvarna protection gloves are an ideal safety product.

You can find horror stories about fingers and hands being cut off on every corner of the internet. This former police officer cut his fingers and then hand to have them surgically removed.

Apparently, a chainsaw accident will involve, on average, 110 stitches.

Legendary golfer Greg Norman nearly cut an artery in his wrist.

Accidents can happen to the best of them and they can happen to you.

What to look for when choosing safety gloves


The best gloves for using a chainsaw will feature two layers.

The outmost layer exists to protect the inner layer until it needs to come into play. The outer layer will protect against trivial damage but is not designed to protect against a charging chain.

The inner layer of the glove is the most important. Like a good pair of safety chaps, the inner layer will be comprised of long loose fibers such as nylon or Kevlar (yes, like the bulletproof vests). These fibers are drawn out from the glove and quickly get caught in the chainsaw's sprocket. This causes the machine to lock and halts the chain.

So when choosing which glove to use, those with these fibers are the best and will go along way to reducing or preventing harm than an ordinary pair of gardening gloves!

You should also consider if the gloves meet a recognized safety standard. Many responsible manufactures ensure their gloves meet the requirements of EN 381:1999 which is specifically for protective gloves.

You'll also want gloves that offer enough flexibility for you to properly hold and operate the saw itself.

So here are some cut resistance glove recommendations to help you keep your fingers where you like them.

Husqvarna's Protection Gloves

You know this brand.

You know what it stands for.

Husqvarna is a tried, true and trusted brand when it comes to chainsaws. Their safety gloves have the same level of quality that should give all users the confidence to use them.

Husqvarna's gloves feature cut resistance in the left-hand glove which is industry standard for those serious about chainsaw safety.

Both gloves feature a spandex fabric back, goatskin palm, high visibility colors.

Here's a review left on Amazon from an actual user of the gloves:

"The fit is comfortable and as the old saying goes "they fit like a glove". The materials allow your hands the flexibility and comfort needed to operate a chainsaw for a number of hours. The grip is excellent and the padding on top to protect your hands does not interfere with maneuverability or functionality. Hopefully, I won't have to find out how they are at protecting me from a chain kickback.

While I infrequently do this type of work I can see these gloves lasting for a long time. I compared these gloves to other makes in the local hardware store and for the price and comfort I believe I got a good deal and with great quality."

Endura Hi-Viz Vibration-Dampening chainsaw gloves


You'll find Endura's cut resistant gloves are amongst the most popular and widely recommend safety gloves.endura safety gloves for chainsaws

Why would this be?

They are comfortable and dexterous meaning that you can ably use the chainsaw for many hours. Crucially, the left hand (remember most accidents happen on this hand due to the way the chainsaws are held) features woven Kevlar to stop a chainsaw.

The leather palms are abrasion resistant. The nylon backings are water resistant and the gloves themselves will keep your hands free of debris thanks to the elastic wrists.

The reviews from users on Amazon show these Endura gloves do the business:

"I use a chainsaw a lot and finally got gloves that offer more protection than the run-of-the-mill work gloves. I have used them several times and like them. They fit well and seem to be well-made as far as both material and workmanship. They are comfortable to wear and I have no problems with grip. Another season of cutting should give them a test of durability, but at this point, I am happy with my purchase."

"These gloves go on easy and fit snug while using them I hardly felt them on. Non-restrictive, very comfortable, of course, have not fully tested them as in getting cut by chainsaw blade, but they feel very thick, better than most gloves I have used."

Youngston gloves for chainsawing

youngstown glove utility

Youngstown's utility gloves feature Kevlar fibers throughout the whole glove to offer all round protection from cuts and digital calamity. 

Youngston Glove Company states in their marketing that the outer glove features "non-slip reinforcement on the palm, fingers and thumb for lasting grip and durability".

You better believe it as the gloves meet the ANSI safety standard of ANSI Cut Level 3 and ANSI Puncture Level 4.

Never mistake wearing gloves as being cut proof 


As with all chainsaw safety equipment, gloves are designed to reduce the effects of a chainsaw chain to the hand.

cut resistant utility glove
Youngston's cut resistant utility glove
You could still get cut wearing them as it all depends on the scenario of the cut incident.

They could, however, mean the difference between losing some fingers or simply receiving stitches for your trouble.

Extra benefits of wearing protective gloves


Gloves will, of course, help protect your skin from abrasions and small nicks and cuts when coming into contact with branches, thorns, brambles and the like.

You should also wear your gloves when tensioning the chain to prevent cutting yourself!

How to order the correct size gloves


Your cut resistant gloves won't help your fingers much if they are the wrong size.

A well-made pair of gloves can slide off your hands if they are too big for you. Spending some time checking that the gloves will fit and allow you to do your intended work is obviously really important. Check the size carefully and measure your hand against the stated sizes. Many manufacturers offer size quides on their websites. 

The four basic rules of chainsaw chain maintenance

Sunday, February 17, 2019
how to care for a stihl chain

Your chainsaw's chain is vital to a successful cut.

Obvious right?

Just like the barber's blade is a well-honed instrument, your chainsaw blade needs to be given the same love and attention so that stays sharp and cuts the wood just right.

In effect, the chain is the most vital and important part of the saw. It's also the part that needs the most maintenance - the beauty of this though is any user with a little bit of know-how can maintain the chain really well.

A dangerously undermined chain can increase the risks of a safety incident - incorrect sharpening angles, incorrect depth of gauge setting, a poorly tensioned chain and of course a dull and blunt chain can all cause real issues for the operator.

The Four Basic rules of chainsaw chain maintenance


There are four simple rules that will ensure that your chainsaw chain performs up to spec.

The operator should keep the chain:

  1. Properly oiled; 
  2. Correctly tensioned correctly; 
  3. Sharp, cutter angles correctly made; and 
  4. The depth gauge height to consistent and correct. 

Let's work through these now.

A chainsaw chain needs to be properly oiled

The chainsaws guide bar and chain are designed to be constantly supplied with oil. It's just how they work. If they did not get oil, the parts would overheat and seize and not cut properly. They would also suffer friction deterioration.

One should then regularly check that the chain oiling system is supplying oil. We recommend you use oil designed for chains and chain bars - not waste oil from other engines. Chainsaw oils are designed to stick to the chain, whereas used car part oil has no such properties and is probably filled with impurities and metal that could damage your gear.

chain maintenance tips

A correctly tensioned chain is a safe chain

At best, a loose chain is not cutting properly and at worst, it is likely to fly off the chain bar - causing you to lose time putting it back on and also run the risk of injury to hands or legs (unless you are wearing safety gloves or chaps!)

A loose chain also increases the potential chance of a kick back from happening. And no one wants a kickback blade to the face. 

An incorrectly tensioned chain will also place more pressure on the sprocket, causing it to wear.

A properly tensioned chain is one that has been adjusted to that it is touching the whole way around the guide bar. It should feel like a snug fit but still be easily pulled forwards from the chainsaw body towards the guide bar tip.

Some tension tips:

  • Tension the chain prior to each session. Tension the chain often, or at each occasion of refueling.
  • Never tension your chain right after cutting wood.
  • A chain tensioned while hot can cool and then shrink, causing tension to be too tight which will break shit.
  • Let the chain cool first before doing anything.
  • It's a smart idea to wear protective gloves, especially if you have diligently sharpened your chain or it's a brand new chain - those things are factory sharp!

Here's a handy video which demonstrates how to correctly tension the saw:


A sharp cutter makes a sharp cut

It just seems so sensible to ensure that your chains cutters are well maintained - damage free and sharp.

The basic rule is that you sharpen inline with the manufacturer's recommendations for your chain.

At the most basic level, you simply need a round file with a handle and also file guide to sharpen the chain.

Your goal when caring for your chain is for the cutters to be kept at an equal length and shape for the life of the chain.

It's best practice to use a file guide to ensure the file is held at the proper depth and angle.

Here's our guide to sharpening a chain. The basic method is to file from the inside out with firm and smooth strokes of the file. This should be done in conjunction with a file guide to maintaining the correct angle.

Complete one side of the chain and then swap over. If they are damaged, file and repaired as necessary. If you have had to make a replacement cutter then you need to ensure the cutter is the same length as the rest of the chain else it will lead to a less efficient cutting rate.

Check out this video tutorial which shows how to sharpen the chain:


The correct depth gauge setting 


This is a part of chain maintenance that is easy to overlook or ignore but as always, doing it right will mean a good and safe cut.

The depth gauge controls the thickness of the chip the cutter will remove from your wood target.

The basic tools required for this task are a flat file and the correct depth gauge tool as recommended by the manufacturer of your device.

To ensure the correct gauge once places the depth gauge tool in position over the cutter.  The excess is filed off from the inside of the cutter outwards.

It's good practice to check the depth gauges after 4 or 5 sharpenings.

Another really important component of chainsaw maintenance is ensuring you keep the chain and bar well oiled.

Review: Dewalt DCE511B Jobsite Fan

Tuesday, February 12, 2019


best work fan for job site - dewalt

The Dewalt job site fan is one of the most popular fans on the market today. 


A hard-working unit, this fan will run off the Dewalt battery system for hours, almost effortlessly - meaning it is a nice and quiet unit. 

Obviously, its rugged design means it works just as well outdoors and indoors and it can take the bolts and jolts that are the usual hazard on work sites

It's not so big that it can't be easily stored away when not in use and it on the pack of your ute or pick up with no worries. 

You can plug in the standard 120-volt cord or connect a Dewalt battery (20-volt maximum)  to it. As the reviews below show, you will get plenty of 'air time' with this Dewalt fan

Here's the specifications from Dewalt:

  • Corded or cordless use (the extension cord will need to be bought separately) 
  • Multiple hanging arrangement options - freestanding, hang hooks, and standard wall mount 
  • Variable speed control - wide-range so you control the speed you want; Airflow - 500 
  • Testing to IP54 standards - meaning it has 'ingress protection' from dust, dirt, splashes of water etc.
The unit has three blades which are 7 inches long and they will turn and turn all day to keep the air moving to keep you cool and to also help expunge unwanted smells such as smoke from soldering or other discharges. 

You can even use it to help dry painted walls, dry wall, and plaster mud.

worksite fan battery powered dewalt

But if you want to know if the Dewalt fan truly is worth your time and money, check out these reviews from actual users who have ponied up their cash on Amazon:

"Love this fan so far. The fan pivots back more than 90° as you may see from my picture. I was concerned the bigger flexvolt battery wouldn’t fit in it but it does with ease. I’m currently conducting a run till dead test to see how long it will run at high-speed with Dewalt’s strongest battery the flex volt 9.0 AH battery. Seems pretty well-made, however, I’m going to hang on to the box to carry it in just to protect it. I hope the DeWALT comes out with a carrying case for this. The hooks pull out from the base allowing you to hang the fan on the job site, which is a nice touch. As many have already posted you can plug it in but not while you have a battery in the battery socket. To use AC will need an extension cord with a female plug on one end just as the DeWALT power pack inverter uses."

"I am very Happy with this unit after day one. I placed a DCB203 20V Max 2.0AH Compact XR Li-Ion Battery Pack (Smallest they make) into the Fan, turned it on low at 10:45am. At 10:28 PM then unit is still running. On Low speed, you can not even hear the unit running. Will be running the unit on Medium speed this weekend, same battery."

So it will run all day. 

"This thing is made STRONG. This last week at the market I was pulling it down and it slipped. It fell from about 6ft and hit concrete. Didn't even scratch it. I'm not saying drop it on purpose but I thought for sure it would have been damaged if work at all. And it turned in and worked perfect! I love tho fan!

It's tough and durable. 

This is the 2nd fan I've bought. I love it! I use it for a weekly Farmers market tent. I hang it from the frame and it keep my customers cool while they shop. My original purchase was for the fan, battery set and charger. A full charge battery will run this fan on high from 8:30am-2:00pm and still have over half charge. It creates a nice breeze. Made 100* market days much more bearable. Highly recommend this little workhorse."

Does the business required. 

"I purchased this fan for the specific purpose of having some kind of cooling device available during a power outage. As such, I wanted to know exactly how much cooling time I would get from one battery. I'm using a 60-volt, 6.0 Ah "flex-volt" battery; however, my 20 volt, 4.0 Ah battery also (obviously) works. I turned on the variable speed fan to half speed; it's VERY quiet. The design of these batteries is such that they don't slowly wear down--instead, they just quit when the voltage drops too much--so, I suppose it could quit at any moment. But, after twelve hours, the fan is still going strong, and the battery still has 2 of its 3 charge level lights on (3 lights would be a full charge). I have to tell you, I am damned impressed! Well done, Dewalt!"

If that doesn't convince you, check out the unit on Amazon.

Dewalt not only make fans, drills and other tools - they make quality safety glasses!

Best 4-way Chuck Key for Drill Presses

Monday, February 11, 2019
multi size chuck key

Universal Chuck Key for Drill bits


What's worse than losing your car keys?

Not having a chuck key when you need to lock and unlock your drill. 

Chuck keys are brilliant little devices for securing hammer drills and all kinds of other drills. They also help with the quick change of drill bit heads. 

Drill locks do come in varying sizes do this 4-way Chuck Key for Drill Presses by Bastex is a handy tool to have in your kit, especially if you have all kinds of tools, presses and devices hanging out in your shed.

It has the following key sizes:
  • 1/4” (6mm)
  • 3/8” (10mm)
  • 1/2” (13mm)
  • 5/8” (16mm

If the universal key is not what you want, you might be interested in the thumb handle style of chuck key. These T-handle devices mean you can really get some could finger pressure to tighten the drill bit:


We personally think tools that need these kinds of devices should go the way of the dinosaurs and keyless drill chucks are the way to go! 

Each to their own though.

Remember, even if you have a Ryobi, Dewalt or a Makita drill, you do not need to buy the branded tool - most drills have universal parts so 'off brand' or OEM parts will work just fine. 

You can also buy holders that help prevent losing your key! We suggest you consider the rubber or magnetic kind. 

>> How to choose the best oil for your lawn mower

Sunday, February 3, 2019
adding oil to lawnmower

How to choose the best oil for your lawn mower


Just as you should regularly change the oil in your car or truck or chainsaw, the same should be done for your lawnmower.

If you want to have the best looking lawns in the street, you'll need your lawn mower to have a sharp blade and to be filled with the best oil so that while you are pushing the damn, thing, the engine operates well.

You could be tempted to think of your lawn mower tas being 'just a lawnmower' so any kind of automotive car oil will do but that could mean the difference between extending the life of your lawn mower or causing it to clog and become inoperable.

So if you want the 'good oil' on what to put in your grasscutter, read on.

What kind of oil do I need to use in my lawnmower?


The temperature of the climate in which you will operate the lawnmower will have an influence on your oil needs.

Lawnmower engine experts Briggs and Stratton advise that "Engines on most outdoor power equipment operate well with 5W30 Synthetic oil. For equipment operated in hot temperatures, Vanguard 15W50 Synthetic oil provides the best protection."

What that means for you as the oil user is that you need to check what range your engine will run on. The easiest way to do this is to check your engine's user manual for the manufacturer's recommendation. If you have lost the manual or never had one, then use a search engine to find a PDF of it. 

A general rule of thumb though is that engines on most outdoor power equipment operate well with 5W30 Synthetic oil.

Here's a handy guide produced by the engineers at Briggs and Stratton to help you decide:



Once you have found the right kind of oil, it's now time to consider what brand of oil you want to use. 

Cheap and cheerful or bespoke oil made for exact kind of engine? 

We typically recommend you avoid the cheapest range of any tool or safety gear or oil and most certainly do the same with lawnmower oil - we suggest you used tried and trusted brands - because these oils have been road tested in many machines being pushed many thousands of miles. 

If those brands didn't cut it, they wouldn't survive in the market. If you don't believe me, read this tale of how Slitz turned a quality beer into a joke and ran their brand into the ground.

One rule of thumb to bear in mind is that the older your engine is, the more likely that it will suit the traditional SAE30 oil ranges.

Recommended oil: Briggs and Stratton Small Engine 30W

If you want tried, trusted and true, Briggs and Stratton oil is for you.

best small engine oil

Briggs and Stratton is arguably the biggest named player in the lawnmower engine market. Their engines are known for 'going and going' so much so that several other big name brands simply use the Briggs and Stratton engine on their own branded machines as a selling point.

So, the biggest name in lawnmower technology is sure to have a quality oil product for their machines and their version of 30W for small engines is most likely what your engine would benefit from.

We think this review from a user on Amazon is just perfect:

"Bought a brand new lawnmower, and didn't want hubs to blow this one up too because he forgot to put oil in it."

Classic and it's always worth a reminder that if buying a new lawnmower, you need to add oil before you use it or you will destroy the engine.


How often should I replace my lawnmower oil?


Many car owners change their car's oil once a year as part of an annual tune-up up. It lengthens the life of the engine as its parts are protected from wear.

For smaller engines, the comparison is the same - many lawn mowers will change their oil once a year in the spring when the grass starts to grow long and the mower is used more regularly. 

This is tied into the use of the mower - your mower can have varying needs depending on use hours. A lawn that's mown for half an hour once a month, may only need a change once a year but a weekly mower of a larger lawn may require two changes. 

A ride on mower is probably more likely to benefit from a change at 100 hours of run time and annually. 

If you feel your engine isn't performing well, a change may help. As we always recommend, your user instruction manual should be able to give you advice - and it will be good advice too because the dudes and dudettes who made the engine have tested it to the ground in the lab so they will know how their machine works under so many conditions. 

How to remove old oil from a lawnmower


When it comes to changing lawn mower oil, there are certainly a few tips and tricks that you can do to make sure you have an oil splash free transfer.

So now you've understood the reasons why you need to regularly change your engine's oil, the next question might be how!

Items you may need to change the oil:
  • A pan or contain to catch the old oil 
  • some old rags or cloths 
  • A wrench with appropriate socket size for the oil drain nu 
  • Engine oil that suits your needs 
  • Funnel 
  • Siphon or oil kit system if you are going to siphon rather than drain

Location of the oil change



The first thing to do is consider the location where you will drain the oil already inside the mower.

Naturally, you'll want to avoid doing this operation on your grass lawn or near your garden in case of spillage.

To that end, concrete surface such as a driveway is ideal. You'll, of course, want to lay down newspaper or cardboard to catch any oil drops that may collect to avoid staining the concrete.

Warm the engine before you drain the oil


It is best to have turned the lawnmower's engine over for a few minutes before you drain the oil. This is because particles that have collected will be floating around in the old oil.

Take care that when draining the oil that the engine parts are not too hot - you may need to use gloves if you have run the engine for a while. It's also now time to disconnect the spark plug to prevent any accidental ignition of the engine.

There are two ways to remove the oil:

1. Using the oil drain
2. Using a siphon pump

Locate the oil drain plug on the underside of the mower


Clean the general area with an old cloth to prevent any external debris from falling into the crankcase when you open the drain plug.

Tilt the mower deck and then position some newspaper and an oil pan or jug beneath the mower.

Then take a socket wrench to run the plug counterclockwise. This allows the oil to drain into your collection device. Once the oil has fully drained, secure the drain plug by twisting clockwise and tightening gently with the wrench.

If your mower has an oil filter, its the opportune time to replace it as well.


Removing the engine oil with a siphon kit


If your preference is to siphon via the oil entry point rather than drain, a siphon kit might be just the ticket.

Once you have your siphon at the ready, place one end of its tube into the oil fill hole and make sure it has reached the bottom of the reservoir. The other end of the tubing needs to be placed into a container that will not knock over during the process.

Engage your siphon and do your best to empty as much of the used oil as you can.

Tilting the engine on its side slightly can help pool the last of the oil and the tube can be manipulated into a position to collect the last of the oil.

These kits can also be used to transfer fuel from your car or fuel container directly into the lawn mower's fuel pump. A handy way to make an efficient transfer!

Once you have completed the siphoning, you are ready to add some new oil. And what could you use?

How about Toro Synthetic oil?


Designed to work across a range of extreme conditions, Toro synthetic oil will handle the heat and the cold to help you get your lawns cut. It will work especially well with new model mowers that are designed to work with this type of oil.

toro synthetic small engine oil

Toro is a massive brand worldwide, in addition, to push lawn mowers they produce golf cars, ride on mowers, spray equipment, diggers, bunk rakes, and top dressers.

So they know engines and they know oil so you can be sure the oil its engineered and tested to meet the needs of their machines.

This means due to its quality, Toro oil will do most lawn mowers a favor in terms of performance. It certainly meets the performance requirements of brands such as Briggs & Stratton, Kohler, Honda, Tecumseh, and Craftsman!


So you've got your oil, it's now time to add it to the engine.

How to add oil to your lawn mower

This is the easy part of lawn mower maintenance! 

  1. Open the oil dipstick and remove it and check that you do actually need oil! 
  2. If the reservoir is empty, add the manufacturer's recommended amount. 
  3. You can pour the oil directly from the container or use a plastic funnel (or one you have fashioned from some scrap paper). If you make a mess, wipe the oil up with an old rag or paper towel.
  4. Screw the dipstick back in place and run the engine for 30 seconds so the oil can get around the engine's internal parts. 
  5. Unscrew the dipstick again so you can check the level - hopefully, the oil is bang on the 'full' line. If you have underfilled, top up. If you have grossly overfilled you may wish to remove some oil. 

Nice work, you've replaced your engine oil. 

How much oil should I add to the lawn mower?

Lawn mowers come in varying sizes but generally speaking, you can break them down into two sizes, walk behind mowers or ride on.

  • For walk-behind mowers, the oil capacity is about 15oz or 18oz.
  • Riding mowers tend to have an oil capacity of around 48oz or 64 oz.

As we need to keep stating, the exact amount for your engine will be found in the user manual and if you don't have it do hand, google it - they often can be found in a PDF format at the manufacturer's website.

What happens if I add too much oil?


Too much oil in the sump can be too much for the engine to handle. It might start to burn white or gray smoke. If you see this happening, it's time to change the oil. Drain it and then add the correct amount.

Too much oil can also prevent the engine from starting properly and there is nothing more frustrating on a Sunday afternoon if you can start your mower, especially if you are the cause!

An excess of oil can also potentially mean that it gets aerated and thus it's performance declines.

You can check if you have too much oil but using the dip stick. If the oil is over the full line, you'll need to remove some oil.

How to dispose of lawnmower oil environmentally


If you have collected the used lawn mower oil, please do not dump it down the drain or garbage bin. For the sake of the environment, there are plenty of places that will take your old oil.

Many services centers, dealerships and gas stations will do this. Some mechanics do so as well for the 'locals'.

It's good to be green.

Can I use synthetic oil in my lawnmower?


Yes, you can use synthetic oil in a lawnmower. Oils like Amsoil are designed for more modern engines.

Synthetic oil is a small engine lubricant full of chemical compounds that are artificially made using chemically modified petroleum components.

The benefit of using synthetic oil is they tend to offer better viscosity, wear and deposit control and low-temperature fluidity.

This means that if you regularly use synthetic oil in your lawnmower (over the long term) then you greatly increase the chances of long service life and reduce the need to replace your lawnmower at year 6 instead of year 10 (excuse the hyperbole!).

So the regular use of synthetic oils in your engine reduces the chances of it failing and thus in the process, extends its service life.

The only real downside to using this kind of oil is that it is usually priced significantly higher than standard oils.

Check out this example from Pennzoil for example, their 530-30 Full Synthetic can price over 50 bucks!

Is lawnmower oil the same as car / auto oil?


You might be eyeing up that bottle of Castrol car oil you have in your shed with an eye to adding it to your lawn mower as it could save you a trip to the hardware store.

So can you use motor oil?

Technically speaking, yes. Four stroke small engines can use car oil. However, motor oil is generally designed for the hot and heavy conditions of a car that will be driven for long periods. 

A smaller engine will benefit from oil that is designed for it - this is why most brands and manufacturers recommend oils like Toro or Briggs and Stratton's version of SAE 30W.

If you have a two stroke engine, then you must absolutely only add two stroke oil to the fuel.  Two-cycle motors simply cannot use motor oil.

You'll also be wise to not use oil designed for big engine / heavy duty machines for small engines - you probably do not may have a viscosity that could actually cause a clog or even disable your unit.

Can I use 10w40 oil in my lawn mower engine?


10w40 can be used in a small engine and most users do not report an increase in consumption. It's related to the viscosity of the oil and manner it will operate in cold or hot temperatures. 

How to change a lawn mower oil filter?

change oil filter for a lawn mower

If your lawnmower has an oil filter, you will need to change this once in a while so that it can continue to do its job of helping to keep your engine oil clean and free of gunk.

Once you have selected the correct filter for your engine (OEM or branded) follow these steps.

Locate the oil filter and twist it counter clockwise until the oil filter can be removed. 

If you cannot free it with your hands, you can use a pipe wrench or filter wrench.

Observe if there is dirt or other debris on the seal and clean it off with a rag (we love old towels for this).

Take your fresh engine oil, rub the clean sealing gasket with oil so that it appears clean and well-lubricated.

Take your new filter, remove it from the packaging and place it into the filter adapter and gently screw in by hand. When you feel its snugly in, tighten it firmly with a wrench but do not over tighten it as you could cause some damage. 

Here's a handy video tutorial on how to change the filter on a riding mower - the principle is the same for the push mower:


Two stroke oil engines - add oil to the gas directly


If you have a two stroke lawn mower then you are going to do things a lot differently than as described. You will need to add the oil directly to the gas, just the same as you would a petrol chainsaw.

When fueling your lawn mower, you'll need to add the correct two stroke oil in the correct ratio to the fuel, before you add the mixture to the engine. How much to oil add to the petrol? As always follow the manufacturer's instructions.

I've got a brand new lawn mower, what do I do with the oil?


If you have brought a new lawnmower (even a battery powered
one), it will not have oil in it and if you run it without, you will break your engines internal working parts in pretty good time! So, get some oil and get it in. Run the engine, check the level is filled properly and go cut some grass!

Can I use a chainsaw to quarter an animal such as a lamb or deer?

Friday, February 1, 2019

Chainsaws are not just for chopping down trees for firewood.

You can actually use them for a variety of tasks but one of the oddest ones we've thought of is using a saw to quarter a beast such as a deer or a sheep.

Say you are doing some homekill and you need to chop your beast up, then a chainsaw will make er.... 'mincemeat' out of the animal.

Can you see what is wrong with butchering a beast this scenario?

Now forget thoughts of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, I know you're thinking about how the meat will get imbued with quality bar and chain oil.

And that meat will then taste disgusting because have you ever tried such stuff? It's not for human consumption.

But do you know what is for human consumption?

Vegetable oil!

So why not give that a go to help carve up the cow?

First, of oil, this is gonna be a bit messy.

So you'll need to drain the standard bar oil from your chainsaw. Replace that with vegetable oil and run it a bit until you're confident that the standard oil has been flushed out.

You may have also already cleaned your chain to make it free from oil.

The real question we should be asking ourselves is do we really want to use our precious chainsaw to carve up a deer's hind?

It seems unhygienic but the truth is, you can do it.

If you do decide to go down this path, be safe and wear protective gear as you normally would when using a chainsaw.
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