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Rider on the Storm
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Discussion Starter #1
I was reading the September 2015 Amsoil magazine, and in it were some recommendations for winter equipment storage (page 6). They recommend the following four steps for lawn & garden equipment:

1) Stabilize the fuel
2) Fog the engine (if applicable)
3) Change the oil and filter
4) Remove grass, mud and debris

I completely agree with steps 1 and 2 (but I don't currently have anything that needs to be fogged).

But as a general rule, I wait to change the oil and any filters, and clean most of my equipment in the spring right before summer seasonal use. I realize this means used oil sits in the engine for the winter, as does debris on the underside of the mowing decks. But if the oil is changed before the winter, that oil will have sat in the sump exposed to the air for months before seasonal use during the next summer.

So, I'm hoping to poll the wisdom of MTF. Is Amsoil's recommendation correct? Should oil, filter, and deck/equipment cleaning occur in the fall before winter storage? Or is it better to wait until right before the mowing season in the spring to do yearly maintenance?


16,346 Posts
S/R--I read the same article last week...I agree w/ their theory--because they are trying to reach the 'masses'--most of the folks that don't pay as much attention to their equipment , as, say opposed to someone like your self.
I'm thinking the rules they posted are more like -say 'guidelines' to follow.

**Maybe you have a new piece of equipment, and you haven't serviced it yet--or you added to your fleet, and also extreme useage--like a lawn care company would do things differently than joe-neighbor.:dunno:

Myself--I always go by my hour meters on the tractors (Yes--I put one on everything)..or by months on the hand-held equipment. Write it down on a calendar hanging in the utility room. Go back and look at calendar at start of each month. I keep all the filters and oil I need in stock, pretty much, as I try to buy in quantity--and don't have to make so many one-off trips. I'll change mine as time goes--but I may be different than some--I put higher octane gas in my stuff, along with zoom or non-ethenol--and try to at least start it once a month in off season. Other stuff--I run gas dry.
And Try not to keep any gas past use date.

My feeling's being--if you keep up w/ the basic requirements year=round--it's no big deal at he end or beginning of season.
Hope this long-winded opinion gives some insight-I'm pretty picky about mechanical stuff--even though most of mine is old----

Oh--and definately clean everything before putting away--look at one of the lawn mower shops first warm week end in the spring--his place will be jammed up with machines that no one took care of--

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