My mom said that the only reasons men are alive are for lawn care and vehicle maintenance - Tim Allen
There are few things in life that give us as much joy as tending to our lawns.
Seeing a lawn trimmed to perfection and knowing that you were responsible for making it look that good is one of life’s little pleasures.
Mowing your lawn, knowing how good it’s going to look when you’ve finished is a feeling that’s hard to describe and almost impossible to emulate.
When you’re ready to be overcome by that feeling and have it rush through every molecule of your being, only for fate to step in and take it away from you at the last minute by killing the battery on your mower can be soul-crushing.
But there’s an easy way to fix the problem, and all you need to head fate off at the pass and power up the battery on your mower is a cloth, the family car, a spanner, and a pair of jumper cables.
Check The Battery
As almost every ride on mower, like your car, uses a twelve-volt battery to power it’s electrical and ignition system, you can jump-start and power up the battery on your mower with a little help from your car.
But before you think about connecting your car to your mower, you’re going to need to check the battery on your mower to make sure that it's safe and hasn’t been attacked by mechanical gremlins.
Make sure that the battery hasn’t developed a leak, as the battery uses a combination of sulphuric acid and lead plates to maintain its voltage.
If the battery is leaking, put a sturdy pair of gloves on to protect your hands from the acid and remove it.
If the battery is leaking, it’s as good as dead and needs to be replaced.
If the battery on your mower isn’t leaking, the next thing that you need to check is the battery terminals.
Make sure that all of the connections are tight and haven’t worked their way loose. If they have, tighten them up with a spanner and try the ignition.
Sometimes, the easy fixes work, and sometimes they don’t. If your mower starts up after you’ve tightened the cables, there’s no need to try and jump-start it with the family car.
In all likelihood though, it probably won’t start so you’re going to need to jump-start your mower.
Before you start to even think about connecting the jumper cables, give the battery on your mower a thorough clean using the cloth.
The cleaner the connections on it are, the easier it’ll be to put some charge back into your mower’s battery with a little assistance from your car.
The Closer The Better
The first thing you need to do is make sure that your mower is as close to your car as you can get it.
The batteries of both vehicles need to be as near to each other as possible. If the battery on your mower is dead, it’ll probably be easier to bring your car to your mower.
As soon as both vehicles are as close to each other as they can possibly be, pop the hood on your car and locate the battery, which should be at the front of the motor on the right-hand side.
Red To Red, Black To Black
Every battery has a positive and a negative terminal.
The red terminal is the positive, marked by a plus sign and the black terminal is the negative one, marked by a minus sign.
It’s important to connect the right terminals to each other before beginning to jump-start your mower.
If you connect the wrong terminals using the wrong cables, you can short both batteries and permanently damage the electrical systems of both vehicles.
Before connecting the batteries, make sure that the ignition on both your mower and your car is in the off position.
Then connect the red clip of the jumper cables to the red terminal (positive) terminal of your car battery and connect the clip on the other end of the red cable to the red terminal (positive) on your mower’s battery.
With the positive connections in place, it’s time to connect the negative terminals of your car and mowers batteries to each other.
Connect the clip on the end of the black jumper cable to the black terminal on your car battery and then attach the clip on the other end of the black cable to the black terminal on your mower’s battery.
The jumper circuit is now complete and it’s time to start charging your mower’s battery.
Jump-Starting Your Mower
From this point on, it’s a simple exercise in power transfer. Switch the ignition of your car on and let the motor run for a couple of minutes.
Then switch the ignition of your mower on, which should fire up straight away.
Let your mower’s motor run for a couple of minutes as this will help to charge its battery.
Once you’re confident that both motors have been running for five or ten minutes, switch off the ignition of your car and then switch off the ignition of your mower.
Remove the cables from both batteries by reversing the procedure that you used to connect them.
Unclip the black lead from both batteries first and then unclip the red cable from the battery terminals of your car and your mower.
Lower the hood of your car and move it away from your mower, returning it to your usual parking place.
The final stage of the process involves firing up the motor on your mower.
As soon as you turn the key in the ignition, your mower should start, and ensure that it remains fully charged, it’s advisable to start mowing your lawn immediately.
However, if your mower's motor doesn’t start, it would suggest that the battery isn’t able to hold a charge for any significant period of time.
If that is the case, you’re going to need to take a trip to the hardware store or your nearest mower center, as you’re going to replace the battery on your mower.
And once you’ve done that and your mower is up and running again, you can return to fully enjoying one of life’s little pleasures.
Mowing your lawns on the back of your ride-on mower.