Step 6: Change the air filter

Change the air filter and clear the cooling fins of your lawn mower
Photo: Kenneth Chen
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A dirty air filter keeps the engine from burning gas efficiently by restricting the air needed for combustion. If your mower has a paper filter, replace it with a new one, paper edges facing out. If it's an oil-soaked sponge filter, remove it, wash it out with soap and water, allow it to dry completely, and then add a bit of clean oil to it before putting it back. Clear the cooling fins of dirt and debris using a screwdriver or popsicle stick.
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    Tools List

    • gloves
      Gloves
    • socket wrench
      Socket wrench
    • putty knife
      Putty knife
    • Wire brush
    • Nut screwdriver
      Nut screwdriver

    Shopping List

    1. Fuel stabilizer

    2. SAE-30 oil

    3. Pan
    for emptying old fluids

    4. Tarp
    to ensure quick clean-up after emptying old fluids

    5. Filter
    new paper or sponge filter to replace the old one

    6. Spark plug
    to replace old one, and guarantee a smooth start come next spring