How Does a Lawn Mower Work? Read A Details


How does a lawn mower work

Lawn mowers are great tools that make lawn maintenance easy and effective by using blades to cut grass. In other words, they reduce the height of the lawn to a more pleasing height. Lawn mowers come in a variety of types, and each type is best suited for a specific lawn type, size, and so forth. Some are very much cheap, while others are quite expensive, depending on the features they possess.

These machines work wonders on various lawn types, whether they’re small sized pieces of grass or an entire golf course. Perhaps you want to know how does a lawn mower work? and you are in the right place. This article will show you how the basic types of lawn mowers work, so read on.

To start the lawn mower engine, you use the brake bar to pull the starter cord. This action will cause the fly wheel to rotate. The spinning of the fly wheel causes the crankshaft to start moving. Many of the parts of the engine will also begin to move when the starter cord is moved.

Now let’s look at how the different parts of the engine function.

Spark plug:

This part is quite crucial in the functioning of the engine. It is the one responsible for lighting the fuel-air mixture in the engine. This lighting up of the air-fuel mixture results in combustion taking place. This results in the piston being forced back downward, causing another component called the crankshaft to rotate and send the piston back up the cylinder where the same process of lighting up the fuel-air mixture is repeated.

Fly wheel:

Fly-wheel of Lawn mower

Two magnets are on the fly wheel, and they are the ones that power the spark plug. The fly wheel is responsible for carrying in the 2 magnets and passing them through the ignition coil, resulting in a magnetic field. This magnetic field powers the spark plug.

Carburetor and carburetor rebuilt kit

Lawn mower carburetor

Other essential parts of a lawn mower engine include the carburetor and the carburetor rebuilt kit. The carburetor is one that is responsible for mixing the right amount of air and fuel for combustion. Burning fuel is essential in the engine’s functioning as it causes motion to happen in the engine. The carburetor rebuilt kit has parts like seals and gaskets. These parts are essential and are used for refurbishing the carburetors.

Other vital parts of the lawn mower and how they operate

Lubrication system:

Since a lot of friction is produced by the different parts inside a lawn mower, a lot of heat is produced. Due to an increased amount of heat produced, parts of the mower will expand, causing further friction. This is bad and can result in the engine stopping. The lubrication combats this issue by reducing friction and minimizing the lawn mower’s components’ heat.

Air filter:

Dirt and any other form of debris shouldn’t enter into the carburetor and other internal parts of the mower. If the carburetor is contaminated with dirt, the engine may have problems. The air filter is responsible for the protection of the different internal parts of the mower from debris.

The blades:

Blades are essential in a lawn mower as they are the ones responsible for cutting grass. Most rotary blades nowadays spin rapidly, which enables them to cut grass effectively even when it’s tall compared to traditional blades. There are other complex forms of blades usually used for commercial purposes.

The 4 Stroke Process for lawn mowers with a 4 cycle engine

Although there are several mower types, the working mechanism is similar. The most common lawn mowers are powered by a 4-cycle engine, which runs on gasoline. This engine is the one responsible for enabling transmission, driving wheels, and spinning blades. You may need to use the battery, ignition switch, or starter motor to start a riding mower engine. In a walk-behind mower, you’ll need to squeeze a bail to start the engine.

When you start the ignition, a current will be transmitted from the battery to the starter solenoid and the starter motor. Prior to releasing the switch to the run position, the current will move from the starter solenoid and motor to an alternator. This is pivotal as it will ensure that the battery is charged. When the starter motor gets energized, the engine’s flywheel will spin the crank-shaft, which connects to the piston. Prior to its connection with the spinning crank-shaft, the piston will move upwards and downwards in the cylinder.

As the fly wheel spins past the ignition coil, a magnetic field is created, which induces electricity. This induced electricity is crucial as it will allow the ignition coil to transmit voltage to the spark plug. Meanwhile, the intake stroke occurs, whereby the intake valve opens, allowing the piston to move down and create a vacuum in the cylinder. This vacuum will draw air and fuel and mix it. The next thing to happen is the piston’s movement upwards to the engine’s tip, causing the intake valve to close. This is called the compression stroke.

Next, the power stroke is created when the air and fuel mixture is ignited by the spark plug, forcing the piston to move down. Lastly, the exhaust stroke will happen whereby the exhaust valve opens and the exhaust gases are released. The four cycles will be repeated till the mowing ends.

To better understand how does a lawn mower work? let’s look at how the basic types of lawn mowers work below

Walk-behind lawn mower

Walk-behind lawn mowers are quite popular. There are 2 basic types of walk-behind mowers, that is self-propelled lawn mowers and push mowers. Walk-behind mowers come in single and variable speed models.

How a self-propelled lawn mower works

A self-propelled lawn mower is also called an automatic lawn mower. It requires you to squeeze a bail in order to start the engine. Squeezing the bail will cause the mower to move forward on its own. As the lawn mower moves, its blades will be spinning, cutting grass in the process. Although this mower moves on its own without using your energy to push it, you will need to direct it in the direction you want it to go.

The self-propelled lawn mower is designed for your convenience. If you remove your hand from the bail, the mower’s blades will stop, and the mower too. This great feature ensures your safety as you mow your lawn. Self-propelled mowers are classified as front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive. Each self-propelled lawn mower model is well suited for a specific lawn type and size.

If you’re looking for an easy to use lawn mower model, you may want to consider using the front-wheel drive model. If you’re going to cut flat lawns, this model is probably the way to go. On the other hand, rear-wheel drive mowers are ideal when you’re cutting grass across sloping areas. Self-propelled walk behind lawn mowers can also be classified by the type of power they use. The common self-propelled mowers are gas powered, while others use electricity as a source of power.

Push mowers

Unlike a self-propelled lawn mower, you should push it manually for a push mower to move forward. This means that there is no involvement of motors to drive this type of lawn mower. The mower’s movement depends solely on you. If you don’t push it, you won’t move it. The main types of push mowers include the gas-powered push mower, reel mower, and electric motors.

  • Reel mowers

On the wheels of a real mower are a number of blades that are mounted to it. These blades are the ones that spin and cut grass in the process. Reel mowers are well known cut grass perfectly and are quiet. This is an excellent choice of mower if you want to comply with your city’s noise regulations, cut a small area of grass, or deal with excellent quality lawn.

  • Motorized push mowers

Motorized push mowers are usually powered by electricity or gas, and no matter the power source, they do pretty much the same thing. The rotary blades used in this type of mower are similar to those used in self-propelled mowers. This type of mower is a lot easier to use because you won’t need to use much of your energy for the blades to move.

Riding mowers

Think of a riding lawn mower as some sort of vehicle. A riding mower requires you to drive it using a steering wheel or levers to move in the direction of the grass you want to now. This mower has a seat where the driver can sit and is far more comfortable operating than the walk-behind mower.

On a riding mower, on the underside of the deck is a pair of blades. These blades spin with great speed when you’re mowing and are responsible for cutting grass. These blades are adjustable. This enables you to choose the grass height you want. This type of mower is ideal when mowing a large lawn area, for instance, a golf course.

There are two basic types of riding lawn mowers: the rear engine mower (and lawn tractor) and zero-turn mowers.

Rear engine mower and lawn tractors

The rear engine mower is powered by an engine and is smaller in size as compared to other riding mower types. Rear engine mowers are ideal for mowing a small area of grass. A type of riding mower similar to rear engine mowers is the lawn tractor. Lawn tractors are a popularly used type of mower. They are a great choice of mowers because they offer more incredible mowing speed when compared to rear engine lawn mowers.

Zero-turn mowers

Zero-turn mowers are a great choice if you want a mower that offers you a better mowing experience. The engine is quite powerful, and it is easy to navigate through your grass and takes less mowing time. To navigate a zero-turn mower, you use the two levers on it. This contrasts with other riding mowers where a steering wheel is used for the mowers forward momentum. Although zero-turn mowers are more expensive as compared to their counterparts, you are guaranteed a great lawn mowing experience.

Safety issues you should consider when using a lawn mower

To make sure you don’t get injured or cause any accidents when mowing lawns, you should consider some safety issues. Always make sure to remove obstacles like twigs and rocks. This is because if any objects are in the way of your lawn mower, the lawn mower blades can pick them up, and this can result in you being injured. The other safety precaution to take when using a lawn mower is wearing safety gear. Safety glasses are essential for the protection of your eyes. Also, make sure to wear closed shoes.

Make sure no children are in the way of the lawn mower. Perhaps, you’re using a riding lawn mower, and you don’t want to carry any children along as this can result in accidents. You should maintain your lawn mower for safety. This involves getting rid of grass clippings and other forms of debris from the lawn mower parts. This prevents problems like overheating, which can result in fires.

Final Verdict

If you want to up your lawn maintenance game, you should consider getting the right mower type for your landscape and budget. By knowing how does a lawn mower work?, you can choose a mower with a working mechanism that’s convenient for you. If your landscape is sloppy, you don’t want a lawn mower that’s best suited for a flat landscape. If you choose the right mower type, your lawn maintenance work will never be the same again.

Kazi Taslim

Kazi Taslim


Poweredgrip ensures an expert team of writers, to provide you with excellent informational and unbiased content. We are dedicated to giving you much smoother and best up to date information. We share the incomparable tricks, tips that give you awareness and confidence for making your buying decision. We are a very enthusiastic, dedicated and hard worker. Kazi Taslim is the Author and Editor of our experienced writing team.

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