We will show you how to sharpen blades on your lawn mower. If you don’t want to remove blades check this step-by-step guide
When the grass is overgrown and is starting to lose its appeal, the best and most logical thing to do is to cut it. Easy, right? Not so much when the blades on your push lawn mower are less than sharp. I know that feeling all too well.
Blunt blades are not the easiest thing to handle when you are trying to preserve your lawn’s ‘clean-cut’ look. Plus, they damage the grass by tearing the tip of the leaf of the grass, which is the reason for rough, brown, unsightly ends.
Thankfully, this is something you do not have to live through and endure; you can nip this problem in the bud before you get the idea that your lawn will never be as lush as you desire. The good news is that you can sharpen lawn mower blades without removing easily at home. And you don’t need to enlisting the help of professionals.
In this article, I will share a step by step guide on how to say bye-bye to the damage that blunt blades can do to your lawn, and peace of mind.
You Will Need:
For you to be able to do this effortlessly and correctly, you will need a few items on hand. These are items that are easily sourced. If you don’t have them, you can get from your local hardware store or online:
- Sharpening tool. In this case, 8”-10” Bastard file/ Angle grinder should do
- Large block of wood/stone to hold the blade in place during sharpening
CautionYour safety comes first. Before you embark on anything else be sure to remove the spark plug before starting anything to avoid it turning back on by accident. For an electric model, disconnect from power source. Ensure that the gas tank of the lawn mower that you are working with is empty in order to prevent accidental spillage of gas.
Now that we have those out of the way, let’s get right into it, shall we?
- Lift the guard up to uncover the blades. If need be, invert the mower and look under it to identify them.
- Take hold of your bastard file
- Position the blade appropriately. It should be facing you
- Place the wooden block/stone on the opposite side of the blade to avoid the blade moving about. This is dangerous and could lead to nasty cuts and bruises
- Rub the rough part (either side of the file) against the dull blade, moving up and down as you go along
- Apply pressure on the file as needed
- In the case of the angle grinder, simply turn it on and work it against the cutting edge of the blade
- Keep checking on the sharpness of the blade. It will give you a rough idea of how long you should keep filing for. A hint to look out for would be a distinctive shine on the cutting edge of the blade that you have been working on. Alternatively, you could take off your glove from one hand and press the sharp edge firmly but cautiously against your thumb. Exercise a lot of caution as this is a dangerous way to test sharpness
- Continue filing if necessary. If not, move on to the next blade
- Repeat from step 2. for all blades
- Once done, return your tools and work materials to their respective places.
Lawn and garden machinery and equipment are of utmost importance and should be well maintained regularly for their maximum functionality.
This is quite an easy task and quite doable in the comfort of your backyard. Depending on the make and model of your lawn mower, a thorough sharpening done once will serve your backyard for the entire season that the grass will need cutting.
Steel blades are of premium quality, far above carbon steel blades. Mowers whose blades are made of this material are expensive to manufacture and maintain.
Sharpening them are quite the uphill task that is well left to the experts. On the bright side, once sharpened, these blades will go for a season after another of grass growing without needing another servicing. They stay sharp for an impressive stretch of time.
Carbon steel blades, on the other hand, make affordable lawn mowers that easily sharpened at home with simple, readily available tools at home. A lawn mower is one of those tools that will look after you in the same way that you look after it. It is a simple machine that will serve you faithfully for years, just as long as you keep the blades sharp and functional.
Along with these care tips the following safety tips should also be remembered:
- Always keep tools, sharp or otherwise, in a safe place far from the reach of children
- Hang up your tools where air can circulate. The logic in this is that moisture causes rust to form on the metal part of the tool. Hanging them up like that decreases that likelihood.
- If possible, grease the metallic part of your tools as a precautionary measure. This will create a protective barrier on the metal against water and moisture, and consequently, rust.
- Do not handle tools you are new to by yourself
- Always sharpen your tools for the next use before you store them.
- Drain the gas tank of any remaining gas and drain the engine of any leftover oil once you are done cutting the grass and mowing is over for the season.