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One Thing to Know Before You Mow

By Real Simple Magazine May 9, 2012 8:21PM

You might be able to skip the lawnmower tune-up and save a little money this year by following this one tip.

If you still have gas left in the tank, empty it out (and dispose of it according to your city ordinances) and fill up the mower with fresh gas. This is frequently the cause of sputtering and problems during the first use of the season.

Get more tips on ways to save money in May.

Photo: Courtesy of Real Simple.


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May 10, 2012 4:47PM
The mower in the picture is electric.  Shouldn't use a lot of gas.
May 10, 2012 4:52PM
Why is there a picture of a battery operated mower?
May 10, 2012 5:04PM
Someone... you're a true idiot. No one entity on the planet controls gas prices moron. OPEC does.. I swear you idiots would blame anyone but yourselves for the problems of the world. Thumbs down
May 10, 2012 5:19PM
Its funny they show a Electric mower. How do you pour out bad gas?
May 10, 2012 5:44PM

Forget this tip! You should never leave any fuel in the tank of any lawn care equipment. Run it dry before you put it up for the season. If you do this then you will have solved the problem before it becomes a problem.

The fuel most available to us contains up to 10% ethanol and if left sitting in the fuel tank and float bowl over the winter it is a guaranteed problem. Ethanol is hygroscopic and absorbs moisture from the atmosphere. This means you will have water in the fuel mixture anywhere you live and have humidity.Short term this is not a problem but over time it goes bad. If you have ever smelled bad gas you know and the ethanol is corrosive to most lawn care equipment.  In many parts of the country there are a few service stations that have ethanol free gasoline. It's more expensive but substantially less than what a repair bill could be.

Also, if you have fuel leftover at the end of the season, always add a fuel stabilizer to protect it from going bad.


I don't believe the mower in the picture is battery operated. It's probably plugged into an extension cord that has been run over and patched many times.

May 10, 2012 5:20PM

How do you get the gas out of the lawn mower? Tip it upside down ?

May 10, 2012 5:11PM
Good catch on the electric mower. Smile
May 11, 2012 1:11PM

Well, we don't have to worry about leaving gas in the mowers in SoCal. The grass is always growing here.


Now let me see, where in the hell is that gas tank in this picture above. Anyone see it?

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