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How to Start a Riding Lawn Mower: A Quick and Easy Guide You Need To Follow

So, you have a wide lawn, do you? How would you consider mowing this vast lawn? Well, I would prefer the use of a ride-on mower compared to the standard one. But, do you also know the right way on how to start a riding lawn mower? If not, let me guide you.

A riding lawn mower on the field

A riding lawn mower on the field

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Benefits of a Ride-On Lawn Mower

Of course, there are a lot of benefits when using a riding lawn mower compared to the conventional option. You know the fact that tending the garden could be tedious, right? However, due to latest innovations, it is a lot easier to take care of the gardens these days.


Specific models might come with additional attachments which are designed to catch the grass clippings while other models offer mulching capabilities. Nevertheless, you can have the best models having both of these said features.


Still, specific steps on how to start a Husqvarna riding lawn mower are also available and for other models of your choice as well.


In addition, if you choose to buy and use this kind of lawn mower, it could be beneficial regarding storing large quantities of fuel. Most of the models feature an electric start-up too. And they are generally easy to handle. 


Also, riding mowers which have cutting decks could be adjusted according to your needs. And it is also easier to find replacement parts like lawn mower deck parts if you opt the use this type of lawn mower.

Quick Start Guide to Follow

A gardener sitting on a riding lawn mower

A gardener sitting on a riding lawn mower

Before you begin starting the machine, of course, there are things that you should check first. Some of these things are the following:

Electric Start Troubleshooting. It is essential that you have to double-check the battery once you are to use an electric start mower. Together with the battery of the mower, the ignition system of the machine also highly relies on the solenoid switch and starter.

Once you have problems in starting the mower, yet the battery isn’t the issue, the solenoid switch might be the next possible culprit. If the starter is the problem, this might be a complicated issue since there is a need for you to disconnect the mower’s wires and then take off the starter. Or it should be done by a professional, instead.

Check The Oil Level Of The Machine. There might be some users out there that could forget to inspect the oil level before starting it up. Don’t you know that damage might happen once you run a driving mower with low oil? So, check the oil with the use of a dipstick.

And this process doesn’t take more than ten seconds which is a short amount of time to consider compared to spending thousands of your dollars just by replacing the engine of the mower.

Make Sure That The Safety Is On. Yes, these lawn mowers as well come with safety switches and these switches turn off the engine once you aren’t sitting correctly on the seat of the machine. Also, this feature would make sure the safety of the driver if the driver falls off the engine.

There are also other mowers which come with a switch hindering the mower from cranking of the blades are engaged. And this kind of feature helps the machine regarding protecting the engine from wear and tear.

You should at least bear in mind these points first before you proceed to start the said machine.

How to Start a Riding Lawn Mower

So, for the most important part, be guided with these procedures on how to make use of the said kind of mower:

A man sitting firmly on the machine

A man sitting firmly on the machine

Step 1. Firmly sit in the seat.

There are some riding mowers with built-in safety system wherein the engine would shut off unless you are seated or once you have engaged the parking brake. Prior to starting the mower, make sure that you are properly seated and could reach all the levers and pedals.

Step 2. Next, press the brake.

You should look on the left side, and the brake might be a pedal down by the left foot. However, some mowers might have a brake that could be a lever that you can reach. Push the lever or the pedal down to engage the brake. And hold the brake in the said position.

Step 3. And now, engage the parking brake.

There could be variation when it comes to the location of the parking brake between models. However, it would be a knob or a lever near you. Merely look near the seat to the left or right of you. Then, pull the brake up as you release the brake pedal slowly.


If your mower doesn’t have a brake knob, then you can try pushing down the brake pedal as for engaging the parking brake. 

Step 4. You have to shift the gear to neutral.

Locate the gear shift lever. In most cases, it is near the steering wheel or sometimes below the seat. Shift the lever so it points to N for neutral. There are some mowers like those having no brake knobs that might require you to hold down the brake once you shift the gears.

Step 5. Now, the throttle should be pulled into a choke position.

Look for your throttle lever. It might be located next to the seat located on the left side. Most throttles are considered to be identifiable since they specify speed by a picture of a turtle and a rabbit. And move this throttle lever for it to engage the choke. Indeed, you should know how to start a riding lawn mower with a choke.

Based on a the model that you have, this could be done through putting the lever in between the slow and fast settings or by pulling it upwards past fast to a point which is sometimes indicated by a circle having a diagonal line through it.

Step 6. And insert the key in the ignition.

And now, you could put the key in the ignition switch which is located on the dashboard ahead of you or it could be next to the seat.

Step 7. It is time to turn the key to the right.

If the key is in the ignition, simply turn it all the way to the right. By now, you’ll hear that the engine would begin to come to life. You might need to hold the key like this for about 15 seconds or even more up until the engine begins.

Using the lawn mower to cut grass

Using the lawn mower to cut grass

For ways on how to start a riding lawn mower without a key, watch this:

Via youtube.com

Step 8. Finally, move the throttle into the fast position.

At this moment, go back to the throttle again and release the riding lawn mower choke by moving the lever upwards to a faster setting that is most of the time indicated by a picture of a rabbit. And the lawn mower is now ready to go at this point, though some older models might require you to let the engine warm up first before you can start driving.


Watch this video to learn more:

Via Youtube.com

Essential Tips and Warnings

A ride-on lawn mower

A ride-on lawn mower

There are also some tips and warnings that you should consider including the following:

  • check
    The machine needs proper storage and maintenance in order to keep running effectively and also to prolong its life along with your other garden equipment like a Lesco spreader. Knowing that you are now capable of starting a lawn mower, there is also a need for you to learn on how to keep it in top operating condition. Based on the model of lawn mower that you have, maintenance could vary.
  • check
    In terms of replacing parts of the this lawn mower, there is a need to only use the manufacturer-approved replacement parts. Consider the mower make and the model number too for you to provide this information to the attendant once you shop for the needed replacement parts.
  • check
    Never leave the machine outdoors. Safely store the mower in the shed then use a lawn mower cover that is mildew and water resistant as for protecting the machine from any worst weather.
  • check
    For cleaning and inspections, you have to do a maintenance check in a well-ventilated area. There is a need to make sure that the mower is parked on a flat and hard surface having the brake on. You also need to turn off the machine and get rid of the ignition key before you clean or inspect the riding mower.
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    It is also advised that you unplug the battery then disconnect the spark plug wires too. And of course, manage to follow the instructions from the manufacturers. And check for any pre-maintenance process that the manual states.

Final Thoughts

Finally, you are now guided on how to start a riding lawn mower along with some additional tips and warnings. There are benefits out of choosing this kind of lawn mower and so make sure that you are capable of using it efficiently as well. 


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