Why You Should Cover Your Riding Lawn Mower

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As the weather gets colder and fall turns to winter, if you own a riding lawn mower, it’s important to properly protect it from the elements. Covering your riding lawn mower can save you time and money down the road by preventing issues caused by snow, ice, heavy rain, and more frigid temperatures.

When that riding mower sits unused all winter without a cover, it becomes susceptible to all kinds of problems. Rust can start building up, mice and other rodents may sneak in and start nesting, and important parts could crack once the temperatures plummet. Taking a little bit of time to cover it up properly goes a long way toward maintaining your investment.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the key reasons you should be sure to cover your riding lawn mower this winter. We’ll look at how the right cover protects from rust, cracking, nesting critters, and more. We’ll also review what to look for when shopping for a riding mower storage cover. Let’s get started!

A quality riding mower cover specifically designed for storage guards against problems big and small during the off-season.
A cover keeps out rain, snow, ice, falling leaves, twigs, and filth; moreover, it blocks UV rays that can fade and dry out tires, plastic parts, and seats. Plus, it keeps animals like squirrels and birds from using your expensive vehicle as a nest or lavatory!

Cover Your Riding Lawn Mower

Why You Need to Cover Your Riding Lawn Mower

Covering your riding mower when not in use is critical for preventing rust and corrosion damage. Exposure to rain, snow, humidity, and other moisture sources causes metal components like the deck, blades, engine, pulleys, nuts, bolts, and wires to rust over time. This rust slowly eats away at the steel, weakening essential mower parts and potentially destroying them beyond repair.

A quality riding lawn mower cover creates a waterproof barrier that protects against precipitation and condensation buildup. It blocks rain, snow, and humidity from reaching the metal components. At the same time, breathable fabric allows airflow, so moisture doesn’t get trapped underneath. The cover also prevents leaves, dirt, and other debris from piling up on your parked mower. Excess debris traps moisture, starting the corrosion process.

Checking under your riding mower’s cover periodically lets you spot any early signs of rust or corrosion. If you catch minor rust problems early on, treating them with sanding, priming, and touch-up paint will be much easier than letting rust slowly damage integral mower parts for the winter. Investing in covering your riding equipment from the elements will pay off in the long run by preventing major rust repairs or even replacement costs.

How to Prevent Lawn Mower Damage

Properly storing your riding lawn mower over cold, idle months requires forethought to avoid return issues like seized rust, clogged engines, and infested interiors. Prioritizing protective coverage not only saves time on reconditioning issues springing but also avoids equipment failure interfering with reliable mowing support when you need it most.

How to Prevent Lawn Mower from Rusting

Protecting your riding lawn mower from the relentless effects of moisture is essential for maintaining its longevity and performance. One highly effective way to shield your valuable investment is by investing in a reliable riding lawn mower cover.

When your riding mower is not in use, leaving its metal components exposed to the elements can lead to rust formation. Rain, snow, dew, and humidity all contribute to the oxidation process, gradually weakening the structural integrity of steel parts. To prevent this, make it a habit to cover your riding lawn mower with a specifically designed riding lawn mower cover.

During winter storage, regularly inspecting beneath the cover allows you to catch early signs of rust. If light surface rust is detected, immediate action is crucial. You can address this by repainting chipped areas, sealing damaged sections, and carefully sanding surfaces down to bare metal. This proactive approach helps to inhibit the progression of rust and ensure that your mower’s vital components remain in optimal condition.

Being attentive to the condition of your riding mower under the cover is a key preventive measure. By identifying and addressing spots of early rust, you can halt the exponential spread of deterioration across essential nuts, bolts, and structural accessories. This level of vigilance is not only cost-effective but also spares you from the need for expensive replacements of degraded mechanical and supportive components.

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How to Prevent Engines from Clogging

Shielding your riding lawn mower’s engine is vital for preventing clogs, and a riding lawn mower cover is a key tool in achieving this. Residual gas and oil within the fuel system can result in problematic clogs in filters, injectors, carburetors, and hoses when the mower is inactive.

To address this, make sure to cover your riding lawn mower with a dedicated riding lawn mower cover. This protective layer acts as a barrier against dust, dirt, leaves, straw, and debris, all potential contributors to clogging issues.

However, relying solely on the cover is insufficient. Before storing your mower for the cold months, take the precaution of draining old gas completely. This crucial action keeps engine components moving and stops internal varnishing brought on by subpar gasoline.

Depending on stale gasoline for the initial ignition can result in sluggish motor response and inevitable clogged filters. By planning and draining the old gas, you maintain the internal readiness of your riding mower’s powerplant. This strategic approach guarantees that when the next mowing season arrives, your mower is ready for uninterrupted grass-trimming action

Prevents Small Animals from Damaging Lawn Mower

Leaving your riding mower’s internal workings and wiring exposed in an unlocked garage or shed invites nesting rodents seeking shelter from the elements. Mice, rats, and squirrels in particular can wreak havoc by crawling beneath your mower cover and chewing through essential belts, hoses, and electrical components. Their nested debris and excrement further corrode connections.

Riding mowers left accessible also run the risk of birds turning cushioned seats into nesting grounds, complete with twigs and splattered bird droppings, deteriorating fabric, and foam over an idle offseason. A tailored cover offering a protective shield across your entire mower keeps determined pests at bay, no matter how harsh the conditions get.

Investing in a secure cover as part of your seasonal mower maintenance provides essential pest protection. Locking your mower away from bottom-dwelling critters and roof-flying birds maintains integrity through cold, stagnant months when rediscovering functionality is desired. Don’t let pesky creatures delay springtime lawn care readiness; keep comforts and finely tuned machines separated via preventative safeguarding instead.

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Taking the time to properly cover your riding lawn mower when not in use pays dividends through reduced maintenance and costly repairs down the road. Purchasing a protective mower cover protects your mower from rust, corrosion, clogged parts, nesting animals, and other problems that cause deterioration more quickly during the winter. It only takes a little time and effort to shield your mower from the harmful effects of exposure, protecting the engine, blades, belts, seats, and other important components.


Should I still drain the gas if I cover my riding mower?

Yes, old gas left sitting over many months, even with a cover, can still gum up carburetors and fuel injectors. Protect your mower by draining old gas first.

What kind of material should my riding mower cover be made of?

Look for durable, water-resistant fabrics like vinyl, polyester, or canvas. The cover should be breathable to prevent moisture buildup and UV-resistant to prevent sun damage.

How can I secure my mower cover from being blown off?

Many covers have grommets or loops around the bottom to slide bungee cords through and attach to your mower, keeping it in place. Some have built-in pull strings that slide under the unit and tie securely.

How often should I check under the cover during storage?

Plan to check at least monthly for any early signs of rust or small pest infestations even with the cover on. Catching issues early makes treatment easier.

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