how long do lawnmowers last

How Many Hours Does a Lawnmower Engine Last?

how long do lawnmowers last pin Lawnmowers can be a significant investment to your tool shed. They come in a variety of models and levels of quality. Knowing how long should a lawnmower last along with It’s engine lifespan is an important factor that will help you make the right purchase decision.

In this article, we’ve outlined all of the factors that influence how long a lawnmower engine should last, along with how to increase the overall lifespan of your lawnmower.

How long a lawnmower engine lasts depends on a variety of factors such as usage, maintenance and the quality of the mower. With normal use and proper maintenance, a lawnmower should last at least 9-10 years. On average, that is around 300-500 hours for a small engine and 750-1000 hours for a large engine.

Although the manufacturer’s warranty offers an average life expectancy, a lawnmower may last longer If it receives proper maintenance and is well looked after.

The Factors That Influence How Long a Lawnmower Lasts

Brand & Quality

As there are many different brands and models of lawnmowers on the market, the one you choose can affect the engine lifespan of the lawnmower. Some brands that aim to offer the lowest prices will often use cheaper engine parts that are lower in quality. Other brands will offer more professional models that have a high-quality engine in them. Generally, the more expensive the lawnmower is, the longer the engine will last. But this isn’t always the case.

The average lawnmower lifespan from a reputable company that has been well maintained can last from 9-10 years. This depends on if the lawnmower brand focuses primarily on impeccable craftsmanship when building their engines using only the highest quality engine parts that provide operational efficiency and can be operated under any condition.


A properly maintained lawnmower engine will always last longer than a mower that is not maintained or serviced well. The engine is a combination of different parts that will require different levels of replacement or service. For example, a lawnmowers oil should be changed every 50 hours of usage making sure you don’t add too much oil. A riding lawnmower’s engine oil should be changed every 100 hours as it has a much larger engine size. The air filter and spark plug should get maintenance on an annual basis around the same time as the oil change.

The engine for both push mowers and riding mowers should be services every 50 hours or annually. Maintaining and caring for a lawnmower engine based on it’s service requirements will help it last longer and work as new for it’s entire lifespan.


The amount of usage and work a lawnmower puts in will greatly impact the engine life expectancy. If you regularly cut grass that is thick and long this will result in your mower working harder than it normally would and putting extra load and strain on the engine. This can sometimes reduce the engine life to 500 hours instead of 750 hours expectancy.

Cutting wet grass can also impact the overall strain on the lawnmower engine as it’s often a lot thicker and heavier than normal.

If you have a lawn with very steep inclines and hills, it will most definitely strain the engine more than a flat area, which will influence engine wear and tear. This becomes less of an issue the more powerful your lawnmower is.

Lastly, how you use your lawnmower will influence the lifespan of the engine. Many short bursts of usage will impact the engine as opposed to less frequent mowing sessions.

Engine Size

Like cars, lawnmowers are as powerful as their size and engine capacity, type of fuel or the number of cylinders. Pushing lawnmowers generally have a single cylinder piston engine as opposed to having a larger twin cylinder piston engine like riding mowers.

A single-cylinder lawnmower engine can last 500-700 hours and a larger engine will last up to 1000 hours. This is a rough estimate based and only apply if the recommended maintenance and usage has been followed. There are many other factors involved.

How to Increase the Number of Hours a Lawnmower Will Last

Give Your Mower a Regular Tune up

Air Filter

Check and clean the air filter and vents regularly. Change the air filter if it is too dirty. When you mow your lawn in a dusty environment, dirty and dust can build up quite easily. It’s a good idea to check the air filter regularly to ensure it’s doing it’s job correctly.

Oil Filter

An oil filter helps keep debris that may end up in the oil out of the engine. We recommend checking this at the same time you’re checking the air filter. Although an oil filter is a small part on a lawnmower, it plays an important role in the engine’s effectiveness.


Change the oil regularly. Most brands and models should be done after 50 hours of usage or every year. The owner’s manual will give you the exact timing for when to change the oil. Check the oil quality and color before every use.

Spark Plug

Without a good spark, your lawnmower won’t start. Make sure to check and clean it every 6 months. Depending on how much you use your mower, it may be a good idea to change the spark plug every year and avoid getting them wet when cleaning the mower.


It’s good practice to drain the fuel out of your mower at the end of each session to prevent it going bad and clogging the intake lines. This isn’t necessary if you’re regularly using your mower.

Sharpen the Blades

A dull mower blade won’t cut the grass properly and can add to grass build-up underneath the mower. A dull blade will also slow the lawnmower down and place unnecessary strain on the engine. Having sharp blades will cut grass quickly and cleanly, resulting in a neatly trimmed and healthier lawn.

Check and align the blades on a regular basis to ensure that the blades are still sharp. If they’re not sharp enough, it’s a good idea to sharpen them with a file or angle grinder.


Check if your wheels aren’t damaged or are properly inflated. Wheels can be damaged easily by rocks or hard sticks which may force the wheels out of alignment. If the wheels are out of alignment it can make operating the lawnmower more difficult and put extra strain on the engine.

Battery Maintenance

If your lawnmower has a battery (like most riding mowers) It’s a good idea to check it regularly. A well-maintained battery will make the lawnmower start a lot easier and helps the starter motor last a lot longer. These batteries a different to battery-powered tools.

Maintain the Belts

A quick inspection of your riding lawnmower belt can prevent a major equipment malfunction. Make sure to look for cracks and separations that may have developed along with ensuring the belt is tightly fastened. If the belt has any cracks or is more than a year old, you should replace it.

Professionally Service the Lawnmower

If you’re not particularly handy with engines and can’t maintain it yourself, sometimes it’s a good idea to have a small engine professional service your mower to ensure the engine lasts as long as possible. A professional service is a time and cost-effective way of looking after your lawnmower.

Most lawn mower repair men can service your mower for under $100 and they typically know the common issues that arise with lawnmower engines. They can often repair them quickly and will prevent you from having to go through the owner’s manual yourself. Read our guide on transporting a lawnmower.

Run the Engine Full Throttle at the End of Season

At the end of mowing season, we recommend letting the lawnmower engine run at full throttle until it goes out of fuel. This helps release the extra carbonated gas and cleans the internal engine of the lawnmower.

Store Your Lawnmower Properly

Make sure to always store your lawnmower in your shed or garage. Storing a mower outside is not a good idea to maintain it’s overall health. This will help keep your mower protected from rust and debris that can harm it.

Remove Rust

When exposed metal on a lawnmower comes into contact with moisture, it will form rust. It’s important to correct any rust that forms to prevent it from eating entirely through the metal.

Should rust start to appear anywhere near or on the engine, use a wire brush to remove as much as possible and paint the metal with rust-proof paint and primer.

Prepare Your Lawnmower for the Winter

Once winter comes around, you’re most likely not going to be using your lawnmower much if not at all. Make sure you completely empty the fuel tank or add a fuel stabilizer. Ethanol in the fuel begins to degrade and can attract moisture which can cause the tank to rust. It’s also a good idea to check the fuel filter while you’re at it.

It’s also a good idea to disconnect the battery and sparkplug during winter as this will increase their life.


Lawnmowers can be a significant investment to your tool shed. They come in a variety of models and levels of quality. Knowing how long should a lawnmower last along with It’s engine lifespan is an important factor that will help you make the right purchase decision.

In this article, we’ve outlined all of the factors that influence how long a lawnmower engine should last, along with how to increase the overall lifespan of the lawnmower.

Andrew Fisher

Andrew Fisher

Andrew is a dedicated father of three who really takes pride in his lawn and garden. You'll find Andrew behind the scenes of almost everything Edge Your Lawn produces. When he's not helping readers find all the information they need, he's in his backyard working on his lawn and garden landscaping. This year he hopes to build an outdoor deck and sort out his veg patches.

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