As useful as your lawnmower is, it doesn’t get used all the time. When you’re not mowing the lawn, you need to be sure to put the machine away properly so that it will last longer. Storing your lawnmower correctly can prevent rust and decay and ensure that it will run smoothly every time.
There are many ways you can store your lawnmower, such as building a shed for it, covering it with a tarp, or hanging it from a wall. It will also depend on whether you have a push or riding lawnmower, as the machine’s size and weight will make a difference. Also, storing your mower for the winter requires additional preparation, which we’ll cover later in the article.
You can get creative with lawnmower storage ideas, but we will dive into some of the most common options used by most owners.
Table of Contents
- Top Ways to Store Your Lawnmower When It’s Not in Use
- Build a Shed or Small Housing Unit
- Use a Tarp or Tent
- Use a Lawnmower Cover
- Hang From the Wall
- Place on a Shelf
- Install a Mower Lift
- Tips and Tricks for Storing Your Mower Over Winter
- Related Questions
- Can I leave my mower outside all the time?
- Do I have to clean my lawnmower before storing it every time?
Top Ways to Store Your Lawnmower When It’s Not in Use
Build a Shed or Small Housing Unit
This method is by far the best one, as you can use the shed all year round. However, it does require some planning and elbow grease to get the job done, so we don’t recommend it if you’re looking for a quick and easy solution. That being said, you can customize your lawnmower shed as much as you like so that it can be as useful and convenient as possible. Here are some considerations to make before moving forward with this project.
- Measure the Size of Your Mower – Whether you have a push model or a riding lawnmower, you need to be sure that your shed will be big enough. For riding mowers, you also have to consider whether you will push it into the shed or ride it in. If you decide on the latter option, you will have to make the structure tall and wide enough to accommodate you with the machine.
- Cost Out Your Materials First – Before taking on such a big project, you want to be sure that it is worth the time, effort, and cost. Once you have the dimensions figured out, you can source the lumber and determine the overall cost. Also, if you have to borrow tools and equipment, be sure to include those expenses. Finally, plan to buy a little more wood than you think you need, just in case.
- Consider the Project’s Length – Unless you are hiring someone else to build a shed for you, it’s crucial to estimate how long this job will take. Building any kind of structure, particularly one from scratch, can take days to complete. If you’re proficient at cutting and shaping wood, you might be able to finish in one or two weekends. However, if you’re trying to learn as you go, it could take weeks before you’re done.
- Think About Usability – While the primary function of this shed is to house your lawnmower, you may want to make the structure even more useful. What about installing shelves to hold other yard appliances? Perhaps you want to install a light on the inside so that you can work on the mower without having to bring it into the garage.
Use a Tarp or Tent
While a shed will be a long-term solution, hanging a tarp or tent over your lawnmower will be quick and easy. This option can be ideal for summertime storage since you mostly have to worry about rain and debris. However, we do not recommend this method for winter storage, as the cold and wind will still get to your machine, which can add unnecessary wear and tear. Here are a few tips to utilize a tarp or tent effectively.
- Don’t Use More Than Necessary – If your tarp is much bigger than the lawnmower, we recommend folding it so that it doesn’t take up too much room. This way, your storage solution isn’t as much of an eyesore.
- Consider the Terrain – As rain falls on the tent and rolls off, where will it go? Be sure to have the tarp at an angle so that water doesn’t pool and cause it to sag.
- Put the Tarp in a Fixed Position – While it may be tempting to just toss a tarp over your lawnmower when you’re not using it, we highly recommend tying it in place. Doing this will not only ensure that it won’t blow away, but you don’t have to worry about pools of water getting everything wet the next time you need to mow the lawn.
Use a Lawnmower Cover
Although this method is similar to using a tarp, a cover provided by the manufacturer is designed to fit your specific make and model. This way, you can be sure that the material will cover everything and that it is weatherproof. Also, unlike a tarp, an official cover can be suitable for winter as long as you prep the mower before storing it (more on that later). This option is both cost-effective and simple enough for anyone to utilize. Just be sure that you buy the right size for your lawnmower.
Hang From the Wall
This option only works on push mowers, and you need to be sure that doing this won’t cause fluids to leak. Oil and gas can drip out of the engine if you tip it too far forward, so you want to plan accordingly. Here are some other tips for hanging a mower from the wall.
- Use a Strong Enough Hook – You also have to attach it to a stud so that it won’t slip off from the machine’s weight. If there is any movement when placing the mower on the hook, it is too loose.
- Don’t Hang it Completely Vertical – Doing this has a much higher risk of leakage. Instead, the front wheels should be away from the wall. Ideally, the rear handle should be flush against the surface if possible. However, space constraints in your shed or garage may prevent this.
- Don’t Hang it Too High – It will be too hard to put the lawnmower up and take it down if it is high up on the wall.
Place on a Shelf
Again, this method is only suitable for push lawnmowers, but doing this can make it easier to store the machine when you’re not using it. As with the hanging method, you don’t want to place it too high, as it could be too heavy to lift.
Placing your lawnmower on the shelf has the added benefit of making it easier to work on the engine whenever there is a problem, so keep that in mind as well.
Install a Mower Lift
This tactic is a bit tricky, and the benefits may or may not be worth the extra work. However, building a makeshift lawnmower lift will allow you to store the machine and work on the underside much more easily. For example, cleaning the cutting deck or removing the blades will be a breeze when you can lift the whole thing up.
To build a lawnmower lift, you will have to install some kind of pulley system. However, you can use rope and place loops on either end of the machine (behind each set of wheels). As long as you have a crank to raise and lower the rope, it will be relatively easy to maneuver. Also, be sure to buy rope with a sufficient weight rating for your specific mower.
Tips and Tricks for Storing Your Mower Over Winter
Putting the lawnmower away during the summer is relatively easy – just keep it out of the elements, and it should be fine. However, when winter comes, you need to prepare your machine before storing it for several months. Follow these tactics to ensure that your lawnmower will be ready to go next spring.
- Empty the Gas Tank – Gasoline can go bad when it sits for too long. Even a few months can cause the liquid to separate, which will create residue. Particles can get inside the carburetor and cause it to fail. If that happens, you will need to clean it to keep your mower running.
- Remove the Battery – The primary purpose of taking the battery out is so that it won’t corrode over winter.
- Clean the Cutting Deck – If you leave dirt and grass stuck underneath the mower, it will cause rust and decay. Also, it will be much harder to clean next season.
Can I leave my mower outside all the time?
Technically speaking, you can, but we don’t recommend it. While your lawnmower may be able to withstand rain, it can rust more easily and cause engine parts to wear down faster.
Do I have to clean my lawnmower before storing it every time?
Ideally, you should clean the cutting deck after every mowing session. However, as long as you do it a few times during the season, that should be okay. No matter what, clean everything before storing the mower for the winter so that it will run smoothly next year.