As your acreage activities wind down this fall, take the time to winterize your tractors. Listed below are instructions to winterize your lawnmower and farm tractors, remember a few hours in the fall will increase the life of your tractor by many years.
Instructions for Lawnmower:
- Empty fuel tank, the easiest way is simply start the mower and leave it running until it runs out of gas, also empty any fuel from the carburetor as well. Leave it empty until you need to use in the spring.
- Empty the oil tank, if mower has one.
- Before turning the mower on its side disconnect the spark plugs. Never work on a mower unless the spark plugs are disabled then hose the deck down and scrape off any grass clippings and dirt.
- Remove any rust by rubbing the affected area with steel wool.
- Check the blades at this time, if need sharpened this is a good time to have it done.
- Spray the underside of the deck with a penetrating oil to prevent rusting.
- Clean or replace your air filter. These should be changed once or twice during the mowing season.
- Refill the oil tank with fresh oil.
- Check your lawnmower maintenance manual for other suggestions.
- Store your lawnmower by covering it with a waterproof tarp in a shed or garage. Do not hang your mower by its handles to store.
Instructions for Storing Your Farm Tractor in the Winter:
- Run tractor out of fuel, if you are worried about rust, fill tank and add Sta-bil.
- Either drain the cooling system or add antifreeze for 30 degrees colder than is expected in your area.
- Remove the battery and store on a piece of wood in a shed or garage.
- If you have an exhaust stack, if it doesn't have a flapper valve place a can over it, to keep water from getting into engine.
- Change oil to prevent corrosion.
- Change air and fuel filters.
- Lubricate the bearings and remove spark plugs, put a couple pumps of oil in each cylinder and replace spark plugs.
- Wash, cover and store in building or shelter.
Instructions for Using Your Farm Tractor in the Winter:
- Keep the fuel tank full, if diesel make sure and change to a blended diesel fuel.
- For diesel tractors, add a diesel additive to the fuel tank.
- Add antifreeze for 30 degrees colder than expected in your area.
- Change to a lighter weight hydraulic oil.
- Change to multi weight motor oil, such as 15-30.