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#4532513 - 10/02/17 11:04 PM Easiest Oil Change Ever!
TheLoneRanger Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 1506
Loc: Southeast United States
The mower is a self-propelled LawnBoy with a Kohler engine.
Today I changed the oil by simply removing the dipstick and
tilting it on it's side to drain the oil. Worked great.

Is this SOP for push mowers, or is there a better method?
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#4532523 - 10/02/17 11:19 PM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
Reddy45 Offline


Registered: 08/15/08
Posts: 2963
Loc: USA
Some mowers have a drain plug underneath.. I prop up the front edge with a block of wood or something and drain it that way. Less messy than tilting it on the side.

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#4532530 - 10/02/17 11:37 PM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
raytseng Offline


Registered: 12/11/08
Posts: 2333
Loc: CA
used an oil extractor and didnt spill a drop.

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#4532543 - 10/03/17 12:30 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: raytseng]
FZ1 Offline


Registered: 02/07/08
Posts: 4727
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: raytseng
used an oil extractor and didnt spill a drop.
This ^^^^^

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#4532549 - 10/03/17 01:15 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
oldhp Offline


Registered: 06/28/12
Posts: 1621
Loc: USA
+1 on the extractor.
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#4532563 - 10/03/17 02:39 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
dwendt44 Offline


Registered: 05/17/06
Posts: 3967
Loc: Central Wisconsin
Yes, most mower engines these days call for the
'Tip it over' method. Cheaper than machining and installing
a drain plug.
In part due to 'all thumbs' home mechanics that don't install
drain plug properly and they work free and dump the oil killing
the engine.
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#4532579 - 10/03/17 04:47 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
Lubener Offline


Registered: 01/22/11
Posts: 2576
Loc: N.Ohio
Originally Posted By: TheLoneRanger
The mower is a self-propelled LawnBoy with a Kohler engine.
Today I changed the oil by simply removing the dipstick and
tilting it on it's side to drain the oil. Worked great.

Is this SOP for push mowers, or is there a better method?

Almost all new units have no drain plug. Myself, I would rather have a drain plug as it would be best for getting all wear metals out with the oil.
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#4532709 - 10/03/17 08:19 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
SubieRubyRoo Offline


Registered: 05/14/12
Posts: 1125
Loc: Winchester, Indiana
Yes, I just tip my mower over into the big drain pan, then lift the front of the mower and prop it up so it all drains out. Best to run the mower out of gas and drain it then, plus the oil is nice and hot and should take all the particulates with it.

My mower liked RT6 but since I only fill it with surplus and not specific oil, it has had PP 5W-30 and some Mobil1 0W-40 in it as well. I dosed the last fill with some Lubegard BioTech. Just because I can, and push mowers are cheap smile

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#4532712 - 10/03/17 08:21 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: Reddy45]
Bgallagher Offline


Registered: 04/17/12
Posts: 3159
Loc: Boston, MA
Originally Posted By: Reddy45
Some mowers have a drain plug underneath.. I prop up the front edge with a block of wood or something and drain it that way. Less messy than tilting it on the side.


+1 I am usually under the deck anyways taking the blade off for sharpening. I usually drain it using the plug. The tipping method is also pretty easy.
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#4532765 - 10/03/17 09:03 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
Linctex Offline


Registered: 12/31/16
Posts: 6148
Loc: Waco, TX
Originally Posted By: TheLoneRanger
Is this SOP for push mowers, or is there a better method?


I tell people to run the gas tank dry first before tipping anything on it's side.
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#4532776 - 10/03/17 09:09 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
boraticus Offline


Registered: 04/19/09
Posts: 2905
Loc: Canada
Any idea of how many mowers live long productive lives with no oil changes?

I've worked on mowers that had a substance more similar to black grease in their crankcases that were still running after 20 plus years of obvious abuse. Keep the oil up and a mower will likely never have oil related problems.

Not that I'm against proper maintenance which includes oil changes, I'm simply stating that if there's oil in the machine, it will likely run for many, many years without ever changing the oil. As a matter of fact, I've seen ads for mowers now that claim no oil changes required.

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#4532790 - 10/03/17 09:17 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
69GTX Offline


Registered: 09/23/15
Posts: 3815
Loc: Connecticut
When I talked to a Power Equipment servicer this past summer about my lawnmower issue, they said that the vast majority of failures are from the carbs. Change the engine oil all you want. But, keep the carb clean as well. In the half dozen or so small push mowers I've had, it's either been all but once that killed them beyond the cost to repair. The other one was from rust due to not cleaning the underside frequently enough. I do change the oil at least once per year for 50-100 hrs of use.
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2001 Lincoln Cont 4.6L DOHC/ 39K mi / QS HM 5w30 / FUG XG2
1999 Camaro SS M6 /19K /Mobil 1 0w40 /Fram UG /GM MTL-ATF
1969 Ply GTX/RRs

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#4532844 - 10/03/17 09:55 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: TheLoneRanger]
CT8 Online   content


Registered: 10/09/14
Posts: 10930
Loc: Idaho
I have been tipping the lawn mowers to drain the oil for the last 30 years. The technique works well
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#4532894 - 10/03/17 10:48 AM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: 69GTX]
jeepman3071 Online   content


Registered: 04/15/10
Posts: 4210
Loc: Storrs, Connecticut
Originally Posted By: 69GTX
When I talked to a Power Equipment servicer this past summer about my lawnmower issue, they said that the vast majority of failures are from the carbs.


I do agree that is mostly what causes people to buy new mowers. Before craigslist me and a group of friends used to spend our summers picking up curbside mowers, cleaning the carbs, and flipping them for profit. We made a nice profit to fund our ATV hobby. Now people know enough to just throw it on Craigslist for $20-30 even if the thing is missing parts.

Dealership markup on parts doesn't help either. I had a guy bring me a fairly new chainsaw that wouldn't start. He said the dealer told him it needed a new carburetor for $200 + labor. The saw was maybe $300 new. Before buying another saw for $300 he asked if I could look at it. I looked online and the whole carburetor was $100, but the rebuild kit was $18. We chanced on the rebuild kit and it took me an hour to clean the carb and install the kit. So for $18 + an hour of labor he was good to go. I feel a lot of the dealers don't want to mess with carbs and just say they need to be replaced, which usually means to the customer it is cheaper to buy a new machine.
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2009 BMW 328i (32k) - Castrol Edge Euro 0w40, MANN HU816X

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#4532972 - 10/03/17 12:42 PM Re: Easiest Oil Change Ever! [Re: raytseng]
Rab6715 Offline


Registered: 12/02/16
Posts: 72
Loc: Midwest
Originally Posted By: raytseng
used an oil extractor and didnt spill a drop.


I bought an oil extractor that you pump up and then release the valve. It works pretty good, but for me it only seems to pull about 80% of the oil out of my lawn mower. Tilting the lawn mower on its side and letting it rest there for 5-10 minutes gets 98+% of the oil out. You can attach a funnel to the filler tube to reduce spills when tilting the mower. I like getting the most oil out as possible, so I've stopped using the extractor for mower changes. If I was changing my mower oi1 dozens of times per year, i'd probably use the extractor, but I'm only changing it once a year, so the tilt method serves me well.

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