Don't forget to winterize your lawn mower before putting it away for the winter

NORTH RIDGEVILLE, Ohio - Saturday was the first official day of fall, which means winter is right around the corner. Before you put your lawn mower to bed until next year, here are a few winterizing tips that will not only save you future headaches, but extend the life of your mower as well.

First, clean grass and debris from under the mowing deck. This will help keep it from rusting out.

Second, make sure the blades are sharpened. Most manufacturers recommend a thirty degree angle. The edges on both sides of the blade should be evenly balanced. An easy way to tell if the blades are balanced is by simply nailing a nail on a wall and hanging the blade on the nail. It should hang horizontal.

Third, change the oil and oil filter. While doing this step, check the air filter as well to make sure it is clean and free of debris.

Fourth, drain the fuel out of your engine or use a gas stabilizer. Some people recommend that you run your engine for a few minutes for the stabilizer to reach your carburetor.

"Today’s fuel and the addition of ethanol, sits and deteriorates the rubber components," said John Worcestor, owner of a local power equipment shop.

Lastly, if you have a riding mower, remove the battery and clean the terminals. Then charge the battery and store it indoors.

With a little effort at the end of each mowing season, you should be able to use your mower for years to come with out any major problems.

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