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Organization Your Space

Lawn Mower Storage: Storing the Machine that Keeps Your Lawn Mean and Green

You can't deny it any longer: the days are shorter, the weather is chillier, and as much as you may not want to admit it, winter is here. If you live in a warm climate, consider yourself lucky that you need to mow your lawn year-round. For the rest of the country, the time has come to consider storing your lawn mower for winter. We're here to answer all your questions about how to prepare your lawn mower for storage, so it will be ready to keep your lawn mean and green once the weather warms up again.

How do I winterize my lawn mower?

red lawn mower outside on grass

If you're wondering how to prepare a lawn mower for winter storage, you're not alone. Questions about winterizing mowers and other equipment are common, and very important. Here are the best long-term lawn mower storage tips:

  • Check your air filter for any clogs or damage, replacing the filter if necessary.
  • Thoroughly clean your mower by removing all debris from the exterior and near the mechanical parts.
  • Tighten fasteners as needed.
  • Lubricate your mower as recommended in the owner’s manual.
  • For electric-powered mowers, remove the battery and fully charge it before you store it.
  • For gas-powered mowers, add fuel stabilizer to the fuel tank and circulate it through the system by running the engine for 5–10 minutes. Let the engine cool, then empty the fuel tank.
  • Should you run the gas out of your lawn mower? The answer is yes. Once you've emptied the fuel tank, turn the mower back on until it stops running, and repeat until it no longer starts.
  • For two-cycle engines, pull the starter rope until there’s some resistance, then slowly release. This helps prevent air from corroding the cylinder, by closing the intake and exhaust ports.
  • For four-cycle engines, remove the spark plug and add a tablespoon of oil into the hole. Distribute the oil by rotating the engine several times using the starter role or key starter. Put the spark plug back in, but do not connect the wire.

What is the best place to store a lawn mower?

Storing a lawn mower indoors is always the best option, for example in your garage, or, if you don't have a garage, in a storage unit. This will ensure your mower stays completely dry and won't be exposed to wind and freezing temps. You can also store it in a backyard shed or in your basement, provided it is elevated off the floor. The one thing to keep in mind is that the answer to where to store your lawn mower is always somewhere dry and away from the elements.

Can I store my lawn mower outside in the winter?

You can store your mower outside in winter, but it isn't ideal. If you must store your lawn mower long-term in your yard, make sure it is elevated, so that it doesn't sit directly on the ground. This will allow air to circulate in order to keep it more dry. Cover it tightly with a heavy-duty tarp, and check it periodically to make sure there are no holes or damage to the tarp. If you really want to protect your mower, you can learn how to build a lawn mower storage box with just a few basic tools. It's a great outdoor lawn mower storage idea, and will give you peace of mind over the long winter months.

Can I store my lawn mower vertically?

Good news: a winterized lawn mower can be stored upright, because it won't have any fluids in it. The same goes for electric lawn mowers, which is one of the reasons they are becoming more and more popular. There are even gas-powered mowers that have special features to prevent the petrol from leaking in an upright position. You can find tons of DIY lawn mower storage ideas for hanging your lawn mower on a garage or shed wall. However, if you have a traditional gas-powered mower and haven't drained the gas and oil, it's not a good idea to store it vertically.

Follow our lawn mower storage ideas to ensure your equipment stays in top shape over the winter. You'll be able to easily start your lawn mower after storage and get your grass looking great before your neighbors. That's a win for you and your mower!

About the author

The Storage Queens

We know a thing or two about moving. Together, we share the best tips in organizing, storage, navigating your city, and more!

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10 Comments

  • It has been quite a while since I’ve done proper maintenance on my mower. It was acting up quite a bit this past summer and that is probably why. This spring I need to replace the spark plug and change the oil like this article talked about.  Hopefully it doesn’t have any major damages as a result of lack of maintenance.

  • That is interesting that you mentioned mowing a lawn once a week, because that is what I had heard as well.   It seems like my dad also made sure all the gasoline was out of the machine before winter time, although I am not sure if that is always the case.   Lawn mowers seem to be the go to when it comes to lawn care, so it is probably a good idea to keep them up and running properly.

  • Thank you for the tips on how to take care of my lawn mower. I really need to do better at taking care of it. In fact, in the past two months I have had to take it into a repair shop three times because something was wrong with it. If I had kept up on the maintenance I probably wouldn’t have had to take it in. Thank you for the list of things to do to make sure my lawn mower is working properly.

  • These are some really great tips for someone who has never really gardened before. I had no idea that it is important to make sure the engine is cool before storing it. It seems like I still have a lot to learn about lawn mowers. 

  • I’ll admit that I never really gave much thought to a mowers maintenance. Never in the fifteen years or so did I do anything to keep my father’s lawn mower in working order. Sometime I’ll have to ask him whether or not he did the maintenance on it. I assume he did – or we had one of the best law mowers around. 

  • I liked the part that talked about short term and long term storage.   It would probably be the same way for other things as well, in that you would want to look at the item to determine how to store them.  There seem to be resources out there that can help with storage should help be needed.

  • Electronics require special storage and handling methods in order to remain in a good working condition when the new season sets in. If they are simply stowed away like any random tool or equipment, it would be a miracle and you are one lucky chap if you are still able to crank it up after the winter. Chemicals require special storage methods too like gasoline, liquid nitrogen, and others.

  • I had no idea that keeping a lawn mower in storage would consist of so many aspects to consider? I mean, I don’t think everybody truly cleans out the motor and worries too much of the maintenance of the mower itself. But now that I’ve read this article, it looks like I may have to do a lot more when I keep my lawnmower away in storage after use!

  • This really is a great article for anyone that is having a hard time finding a place to put their lawn mower. I definitely know that I have a really hard time with it since there is very little that is able to be utilized space wise in my garage. This really gives some great advice as well to ensure that you’re able to keep your lawn mower nice and well kept. Thank you for sharing. http://www.heathserviceec.com/

  • I really like that you talked about the importance of maintenance when it comes to your lawn mower. Keeping anything in good condition and taking proper care of it will help it work better and last longer. However, I didn’t see any instructions on how to keep your mower in top shape. Is it the same for every mower, or does it differ with every brand? http://www.cld-nc.com/Our_Services.html