The best way to sharpen lawn mower blades
To have the healthiest lawn, you will need to mow the grass about once a week, as removing only the top third of the blade of grass promotes growth. To do this effectively without damaging your turf, you will need to consistently sharpen your turf blade.
Why do I need to sharpen the blade of my lawn mower?
When you mow your lawn with a dull lawn mower blade, the grass will not cut. It rocks. The serrated edge of a torn blade of grass allows disease to enter the blade of grass. Not only will this make your lawn unhealthy, but instead of a lush green, the torn grass tips will make your garden look dull and brown.
When to sharpen your lawn mower blade
There are two quick and easy ways to tell when your lawn mower blade needs to be sharpened: look at the grass or look at the blade.
Look at the grass
After mowing your lawn, inspect the grass. If the grass has a clean cut on the top, all is well. However, if the cut mark is jagged and jagged, it is time to sharpen your blade. Also, you can scan the lawn after mowing to assess if all the blades of grass are at the same height and to see if the property has a brown cast.
Look at the blade
The second way to tell if your lawn mower blade needs sharpening is to inspect the blade. If there are any nicks, dents, or the edge is noticeably dull, it’s time to sharpen the blade. If the blade looks crooked, however, it’s time to buy a new one.
How often should I sharpen my lawn mower blade?
As a rule of thumb, always sharpen the blade of your lawn mower before the first cut of the season. After that, use the methods mentioned above to assess when to sharpen again. Depending on the size of your lawn, you will likely need to sharpen your blade two or three times per season.
Also, if you ever hit something solid with your lawn mower, like a rock or a root, you should immediately stop mowing the lawn and inspect the blade to make sure it is not bent. Even if the blade is in good condition, it is likely that it will need to be sharpened again before your next mow.
A step-by-step guide to sharpening lawn mower blades
- Before starting, remove the wire from the spark plug to prevent unexpected starting of the lawn mower.
- Tilt the lawn mower back, so that the spark plug is facing up. If you tilt the mower on its side, you are more likely to leak gasoline or oil. Alternatively, you can drain the fluids from your lawn mower before you tip it over.
- Insert a large block of wood into the mower to keep the blade from turning while loosening the nuts that hold it in place. If this is your strategy, make sure the wood stays perpendicular to the blade. Otherwise, you could accidentally bend the blade. Alternatively, you can put on a cut resistant work glove so that you can hold the blade securely while loosening.
- Using an appropriately sized wrench, remove the two nuts that hold the blade to the lawn mower.
- Clean the blade.
- Place the lawn mower blade in a vise and tighten it firmly so that the edge you want to sharpen is facing up. Using a metal file, follow the angle of the blade and use long, downward strokes until the blade is sharp.
- If you prefer, you can use a lawn mower blade sharpener that attaches to a hand drill to sharpen the lawn mower blade. Before use, put on a pair of safety glasses. Then insert the lawn mower blade between the plastic guard and the whetstone and simply run the blade sharpener along the edge of the blade.
- Alternatively, you can use a angle grinder or one bench grinder to sharpen the blade of your lawn mower. You must also wear protective glasses here.
- Turn the blade over so you can sharpen the other side.
- You should remove the same amount of material from each side, so that the blade remains balanced. To check this, place the lawn mower blade on a lawn mower blade balancer. If one side tilts down, more material will need to be removed from that side.
- Clean all the grass under the lawn mower before mounting the lawn mower blade and tightening the nuts.
What you need to buy to sharpen lawn mower blades
These cut-resistant work gloves feature a built-in non-slip PVC patch for enhanced grip, performance and protection.
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3M safety glasses are adjustable, so you can position the anti-fog and scratch-resistant lens precisely where you need it.
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This durable, smooth cut 10 inch sharpening file is a heavy duty tool that excels at restoring sharp edges.
If you need a lawn mower blade sharpener and a lawn mower blade balancer, this is the kit for you as it includes both handy tools for one low price.
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Allen Foster written for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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