I’ve been using my John Deere push lawnmower for a couple of years now and it’s been delivering unmatched cutting performance in the field.
However, it tends to slow down at times, which isn’t just frustrating but takes me longer to complete my tasks.
As part of regular maintenance and proper maintenance routines, I’ve checked several components of the mower to ensure they are in good working order including the wheels, shafts, starter gear, and even if grass is accumulated in the frame of my mower.
But since this inspection didn’t resolve the issue, I called in a John Deere professional to diagnose the problem, and voila – I have an almost brand-new mower that performs without any hiccups.
There are several reasons why your lawnmower speed, including a hydrostatic lawn mower, is slow including faulty spark plugs, poor quality of gasoline, and more than likely a clogged air filter.
Fixing these issues will increase mower speed and help the machine deliver optimal performance.
5 Ways to Make Your Lawn Mower Faster
The first thing worth noting is that lawnmowers including hydrostatic lawnmowers and belt-driven lawnmowers that aren’t regularly maintained will not function at full performance and will showcase low lawn mower’s speed.
1. Faulty Spark Plug
Spark plugs are an essential component of a lawnmower that is designed to ignite the fuel and air mixture inside the lawnmower engine.
Dirty or faulty spark plugs could result in the slow starting of the machine and even affect the battery’s life. In worse cases, a bad spark plug could cause your lawnmower’s engine to stall and affect the engine’s performance.
Since each lawnmower varies in design, refer to your owner’s manual on how to check and change a faulty spark plug.
If you don’t have your lawnmower user guide handy, check to see whether your lawnmower is using more fuel than usual in the case of gas-powered mowers.
Riding mowers may take longer to start when you turn the key and it may take an increasing number of pulls in the case of a pull mower.
How to Fix Faulty Spark Plugs in Lawnmowers including hydrostatic mowers?
Changing a spark plug may seem overwhelming but is a fairly easy task. You will need a few tools to change a spark plug of a mower including a riding mower:
- A spark plug socket (13/16 or ¾-inch)
- A ratcheting socket driver
- Spark plug gauge
- Disconnect the lawnmower’s spark plug wire. This is also a good time to wipe the dust and debris around the plug socket.
- Carefully remove the spark plug. If it isn’t coming out easily, spray a little WD-40 to loosen it up.
- Inspect the spark plug to see if there’s any powdery material on it, which indicates a problem with the lawnmower carburetor.
- Ensure you are about the install the right spark plug for your lawnmower model.
- Install the spark plug, and finger-tighten it, after which use the ratchet to tighten the plug until it stops.
2. Lawn Mower Slows Down When Cutting
There are plenty of reasons why your lawnmower slows down when cutting including clogging, bad battery, and using the wrong type of fuel.
A clogged lawn will not supply enough fuel to the mower’s engine, which affects everything from fuel consumption to its speed.
If you have a battery-powered mower, aka electric lawnmower, a bad battery can cause the lawnmower to slow down and sometimes stall.
Using the wrong type of fuel can cause your lawnmower’s engine to run hotter, damage fuel lines, and reduce engine performance and consequently its speed.
How to Fix Lawn Mower Slows Down When Cutting Issue?
With regards to clogging, the good news is that you only have to clean the carburetor of your mower once a year, which should speed up your mower and keep it running well until the next growing season.
Before cleaning your lawn mower’s carburetor during the spring or any other time of year you see fit, you should ideally ensure that isn’t something else causing the slow lawnmower issue.
- Given that the purpose of cleaning the lawnmower’s carburetor is to remove any debris that could be causing the mower’s engine to run rough and slowly, it’s a good idea to clean the outside of the engine when it is turned off.
- To access the carburetor, you’ll have to remove the air filter housing, and the air filter that sits overtop of it. Remove the air filter and clean it if necessary if you have a dirty air filter before placing it aside. You should now have access to the carburetor.
- The carburetor of a lawnmower is divided into several pieces, which need to be removed and put back in the same position. After cleaning the carburetor and its pieces, reassemble the carburetor and test the lawnmower to see if it’s running at normal speed.
3. Check the Governor
Just like a cruise control system on a vehicle, some lawnmowers and traditional lawn tractors come with a governor, which is designed to maintain the speed of the mower when mowing, and outdoor power products.
There are two common types of governor systems – mechanical governor systems and pneumatic governor systems. Most people believe that the governor can increase the mower’s speed, but what it actually does is set an upper speed and ensures the mower doesn’t cross it.
Therefore, if the governor’s upper speed is set to low, your lawnmower won’t run at higher speeds than the configured limit.
How to Fix Governor Speed Issue?
Adjusting the governor on your lawnmower is a relatively straightforward process. The first thing you need to do is locate the governor’s arm.
Then look for the governor’s spring. To make the necessary adjustments, loosen the lock nut on the governor’s arm, and then rotate the arm in the direction that increases the engine’s speed. Once you’ve set the arm in the desired location, tighten the lock nut until the governor is properly secured.
4. Check and Replace Engine Oil if Necessary
Old, dirty engine oil and/or low oil levels can cause engine wear and reduced performance and can cause permanent damage to your mower.
Whether it’s a push or riding a lawnmower, changing the oil periodically will keep it running smoothly and efficiently and allow you to work with a fast lawn mower.
You can use car oil in lawnmowers with 4-stroke engines (larger engines) but not in lawnmowers with smaller engines like two-cycle engines.
How to Change the Oil of Lawnmower?
Changing the oil of your mower is simple and can be done in a few simple steps. Turn off your mower and let it cool down, and drain out the old oil into a drain pan or oil-safe container.
Most mowers come with a drain plug underneath to easily drain the oil without any spillage. While you’re at it, check the oil filter and replace it if necessary.
Refill your mower with fresh oil and check the oil level with a dipstick. If the oil level in your lawnmower id still low, add some more, and remove it if it’s too high.
5. Sharpen Your Mower Blades to Make Lawn Mower Fast
Believe it or not, dull mower blades just affect the speed of your mower, and here’s how! Sharp blades provide a more crisp and clean cut than dull mower blades, which decreases the need to go over a patch of grass more than once, hence increasing the speed of the mower.
How to Sharpen Mower Blades?
The easiest and fastest way to shape lawnmower blades is with a bench grinder. Since not many gardeners own a bench grinder, you can use a clamp and file to sharpen a dull mower blade. Another way to sharpen a dull mower blade is with a drill and blade sharpening stone.
6. Make Sure Your Fuel Tank is Topped Up with High-Quality Gas
Regardless of the type of fuel you use in your mower whether high-octane fuel or other quality fuels, keep the mower gas tank including riding lawn mower topped up with the best fuel quality at all times for optimum speed and keep the engine running smoothly.
But always refer to your lawnmower’s user manual to ensure you are using the right fuel for your lawnmower.
7. Check the Lawnmower’s Wheels
Lawnmower wheels come in all sizes, mostly larger wheels at the rear and smaller wheels at the front. Damaged lawnmower wheels can slow down your mower and will probably not let the mower run well on rugged or hilly terrain.
Q. How to Make My Craftsman Mower Go Faster?
A. There are myriad different ways to make your Craftsman mower go faster including using a higher octane gas to make the engine burn fuel faster and increase its speed.
Q. What Mower Has the Fastest Blade Speed?
A. Honda produces mowers with the fastest blade speed but keep in mind that faster doesn’t always mean crisp cuts.
Q. Do Lawnmower Blades Get Too Dull to Cut Grass?
A. Lawn mower blades can get dull over time, and using dull lawnmower blades including dull push mower blades can be detrimental to the health of your turfgrass.
Using a slow lawnmower can be frustrating but the tips above can help speed things up. Start by adhering to maintenance routines for your mower including hydrostatic lawnmowers and belt-driven lawnmowers.
Always check the air level and maintain the right air pressure level in your mower’s tires to increase the speed of your mower and to mow different types of grass including wet grass and overgrown grass without any problems.
Hi, Alex Kuritz here. Growing up I remember that my family had one of the best lawns in the neighborhood. Richly green and lush. I did a lot as I grew up in terms of caring and tending for not only my family’s lawn but also my neighbors. I can say I have years of experience, and I am here to share it with you.