As a mechanic, there are times when I come across situations where lawn mower batteries are completely drained and need a quick boost. This generally happens when the mower has been stored for too long, is not used regularly, or experiences extreme temperatures. Fortunately, a simple solution is jump-starting the lawn mower with your car.
In this comprehensive article, I will discuss the reasons for jump-starting a lawn mower, a list of essential items you need, a step-by-step guide on the process, some valuable tips to ensure the process runs smoothly, and an FAQ section to address common concerns.
Reasons to Jump-Start a Lawn Mower
There are various reasons why a lawn mower might need a jump-start. These include:
- A drained battery due to underuse or prolonged storage
- Cold temperatures cause the battery to lose charge
- A malfunctioning charger or charging system
Things You Will Need
To safely jump-start a lawnmower using a car, prepare the following items:
- A running car with a healthy battery
- A pair of jumper cables
- A pair of gloves
- Safety goggles
- A partner to help if possible
Step-by-Step Guide on Jump-Starting a Lawn Mower with a Car
- Safety first: Put on gloves and safety goggles before you begin. Ensure the car and lawn mower are turned off, including their headlights and accessories.
- Position the car and lawn mower: Move the car close to the lawn mower, ensuring both batteries are easily reachable with the jumper cables. However, avoid having the vehicles touch each other.
- Connect the jumper cables: Open the car hood, locate the battery, and identify the positive (+) and negative (-) terminals. Find the mower battery and do the same. Connect one end of the red jumper cable to the positive terminal on the car battery and the other to the positive terminal on the mower battery. Next, connect one end of the black jumper cable to the negative terminal on the car battery and clip the other end to an unpainted metal part of the mower, away from the battery and belts.
- Start the car: Turn on its engine and idle to charge the mower battery for a few minutes. Now try to start the mower. If it starts successfully, let it run for a few minutes to charge its battery.
- Disconnect the jumper cables: Turn off the mower engine before disconnecting the cables. First, disconnect the black cables, starting from the mower and then from the car. Then do the same with the red cables, beginning from the mower.
- Ensure both batteries are 12V; otherwise, there’s a risk of damaging the batteries or electrical systems.
- Check and clean the battery terminals for better conductivity before connecting the cables.
- Always connect the positive and negative terminals first to avoid short circuits or sparks.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you jump a riding lawn mower with a car?
If you have a riding mower, you can jump-start it using your car’s battery system. Most mowers use a 12-volt system, so check the battery details to be sure yours does too. Connect the jumper cables in sequences 1, 2, 3, and 4 to begin the process. Start up your mower and then remove the wires in the reverse order (4, 3, 2, 1).
The battery can usually be found in various hard-to-reach locations like under the hood, seat, or wheel. If you have trouble locating it, check the battery’s casing for a sticker or stamp indicating its voltage.
Q: Is jumping-start a lawn mower with a car battery okay?
A: It is generally safe to jump-start a lawnmower with a car battery. However, ensure both batteries are 12V and follow the abovementioned procedure.
Q: Can I damage my car by jump-starting my lawn mower?
A: Jump-starting a lawn mower with a car battery is generally safe if you follow the correct procedure. However, if done incorrectly, it can cause damage to both vehicles. Take proper precautions and use appropriate protective gear when jump-starting your mower.
Q: How often should I jump-start my lawn mower?
A: Jump-starting a lawn mower with a car should only be done as an emergency measure. If your mower battery keeps dying, it is likely due to a fault in the charging system and needs to be serviced by a professional.
What should the voltage be for the battery in my riding mower?
The voltage for the battery in a riding mower is typically 12V. Check the details on the battery casing or label before jump-starting the mower. It’s also essential to ensure the car battery is the same voltage.
We hope you got the answer about jumping a riding mower with a car. Jump-starting a lawn mower with a car is an easy and effective way to get your mower up and running in no time. Just take all necessary safety precautions, use the right equipment, and follow the above steps.
Douglas Mackalie is a Founder of Mackalies Garden. He is one of the most exciting people you’ll ever meet. He has 25 years of experience in horticulture and gardening, most of which he’s spent outdoors getting his hands dirty.