Mowing your lawn is a chore that many people put off. But it’s an essential part of caring for your yard, keeping weeds and pests under control, and making your property look presentable. With a well-maintained lawn, you’ll also be getting exercise while you work on the yard.
But does a brand new blade need to be sharpened? Sharpening blades is one way to keep them in good shape. There are a number of other things you can do to maintain the condition of your blade without having to send it out for professional sharpening. Doing so will make mowing tasks easier and more pleasant for you.
Why is sharpening a blade important?
All metal blades are subject to wear and tear. When worn down, the blade isn’t so sharp that you can see through it. This makes it harder for you to cut grass with your mower, causing you to spend more time just trying to stay upright.
You’ll also have to spend more time sharpening the blade, or replacing it entirely. What you need to consider about sharpening a blade There are a number of things you can do to keep your blade sharp.
How often should you sharpen your blade?
While you can sharpen your blade up to two times a year, it’s not necessary to do so more than that. Do you need a new blade? It doesn’t always make sense to replace the blade on your lawn mower when it’s more than a few years old.
However, the blades should always be checked for proper wear and tear. Some brands are recommended to be replaced every 10 years. However, you need to make sure that the blades on your mower are up to date as well.
Can you sharpen your blade without sending it to the shop? There are times when it doesn’t make sense to send your lawn mower to the shop to be sharpened. Or if you’re unsure of the condition of your blade, it might be worth keeping it sharp by doing it yourself.
Does A New Lawn Mower Blade Need to be Sharpened?
Corrections and maintenance on a mower blade are easy, and you can do them at home. You can sharpen the blade by clamping a wire wheel to the blade. It takes a while for the blade to become sharp enough, but it’s not difficult.
The only thing you can’t do is completely replace the blade without having a professional sharpen it. Sharpening blades is a common service that the big equipment providers offer. That’s why they stock the latest blades and blades that have been tested and proven to perform well.
But if you can do it yourself, you’re likely to find it quite simple and inexpensive. There are a number of blade replacement procedures that you can perform at home without professional equipment.
How to sharpen a blade yourself
If you don’t have access to a professional blade sharpening tool, you can still sharpen your blade yourself. That way, you’ll be able to put the proper amount of pressure on your blade while you cut the grass, making the job more comfortable and more enjoyable.
Of course, if you have a tool like this in your garage, you don’t need to worry about sharpen the blade yourself. Just buy new blades, loosen the new ones, and put them in place. For a more hands-on approach, you can sharpen a blade by using a jigsaw.
You can also use a cordless drill, or a power drill if you have a good one. When sharpening your blade by hand, you’ll need a few tools: A steel post driver or two. The holes and pins in the post driver or the drill need to be ground to remove sharp edges. A knife sharpener.
Why you should replace a blade
New blades are much more likely to start breaking when used for the first time. After a few times out in the elements, your blades are bound to break. Many people call this “bean-popping” of the blade. When this occurs, it’s very difficult to straighten and use the blade again.
Replacing the blade makes mowing less frustrating and easier. How to replace a blade: You’ll find that most lawn-care equipment comes with a tool to replace a blade. The blades come in different grades. If you need to replace your blades, simply take off the metal blade with your tool.
Then, take out the blade that you’re replacing, and slide it over the old blade. Put the new blade on, and re-insert the new blade back into the deck.
When to replace your blade
Mowing is the main job of a lawn mower, so you’ll want a blade that’s in good shape before you start using it on your property. Most mowers will be best for about 400-500 miles. If you’re starting a new lawn, you can get a new blade when you start mowing, but that’s not a good time to worry about a blade being too dull.
Instead, leave a brand new blade in the bag so it’s easy to remember when the blade is in need of sharpening. What causes dull blades? Lawn mowers have a spinning deck that pushes back grass. The spinning disc provides power to the blades by causing it to spin at high speed. The friction created by this action can cause blades to become dull, especially if the grass is wet, as it can be quite slippery.
How to tell if it’s time to replace the blade
So how do you tell if it’s time to replace the blade? There are several ways to find out. For starters, look at the new blade. Many manufacturers these days offer lightweight blades with long, thick rims that won’t break in severe grass or weeds.
There are many newer designs, such as the heavy-duty utility blades. You can also check the old blade. If you don’t notice any wear or deterioration, it’s probably fine. If you see wear or a hole, the blade needs to be replaced.
Also, look at the tread. If the tread is worn away, the blade needs to be replaced. A worn-out tread will allow sharp objects to be easily kicked off and cause damage to your grass and your shoes. And when you’re putting the blade back on, take into account how you’re mowing.
If you decide to use the sharpening option on your own, follow these simple steps to begin sharpening your lawn mower blades: Before you buy any blade, do some research to determine its condition and general make. It’s better to buy a blade you’re certain you’ll need than to buy a cheap, slightly worn blade just because you have some extra money.
Pick a convenient location to do the sharpening. This is not a place where you might have children around, and it’s not like you can spend the day sharpening and cleaning your mower blades. Do it after you’ve put your child to bed, or whenever you’re feeling free and calm. Choose a sharpening tool that’s right for your blades. It should be lightweight and portable, or else you’re wasting your time.