If you are new to using lawn sweepers, you will benefit from the following user tips that prevent common problems from occurring when using these wonderful time and energy saving machines.
Tip 1: Get It Store Assembled And Save Time
If on your first few tries your lawn sweeper does not pick up debris that well, you will probably feel disappointed. But this is what we have found: rather than being a problem with the machine itself, it can often be due to incorrect assembly by the owner.
Different models vary in terms of complexity of assembly, but then again people vary too.
A lawn sweeper that takes one person 1 hour to assemble properly may take another 3 hours.
So if you are not 100% sure that you have assembled it right or your eyes glaze over when you look at the assembly instructions, take it to your local hardware retail store (such as Home Depot) and ask for help.
Most home and garden stores will assemble your lawn sweeper for a small fee, giving you assurance that everything is in place for your sweeper to do the job its supposed to.
Tip 2: Wait For Your Lawn To Dry
Similar to when mowing grass, lawn sweeping is best carried out when your lawn is dry rather than wet. The brushes are more likely to get a good grip on dry debris than if it’s wet, soggy, and slippery.
Tip 3: A Mowed Lawn Is Better Than A Grown Lawn
The shorter the grass on your lawn, the easier it will be for the lawn sweeper’s brushes to pick up actual debris, instead of fighting against long grass to reach it. Shorter grass means that debris sticks out more and is better swept up.
Therefore, mow your lawn regularly if you wish to sweep up maximum amounts of leaves and other debris.
Tip 4: Experiment With Tractor Speed
The speed at which you drive your lawn tractor or riding mower can affect the performance of your tow behind lawn sweeper.
There is no exact speed that works in all situations; each lawn sweeper is different, each lawn is different, and each type of debris is different.
So experiment away to find the speed that works best for your situation.
With a small amount of trial and error, you should find the best speed that ensures maximum pick-up of debris by your lawn sweeper.
Tip 5: Experiment With Brush Height
Most lawn sweepers have an easy to operate mechanism for adjusting brush height.
As with tractor speed, this could require some trial and error to get the best from your machine.
Setting the brush height correctly in relation to the height of your lawn should significantly improve the amount of debris picked up.
The general rule is that the brushes should sit half an inch below the tip of grass. This is a rough guideline, not a hard and fast rule.
Tip 6: Avoid High Speeds Over Uneven Surfaces
Going too fast over bumpy surfaces may damage your lawn sweeper and severely affect its performance by throwing the sweeping brushes out of whack.
Tip 7: Sweep Your Lawn Regularly
When you own a lawn sweeper, you will realize how easy it is to clear debris off of your lawn.
What used to take hours of effort with a rake will take minutes.
However, that does not mean you should stockpile lawn debris for weeks upon weeks.
In fact, take advantage of the ease of use of a lawn sweeper to sweep more regularly and prevent leaves and other things from clogging up your lawn.
Firstly, the more regularly you sweep the better it is for the health of your lawn.
Secondly, you will discover that the thicker the layer of debris covering your lawn, the more passes you will have to make with the lawn sweeper over the same area to collect everything. That will waste your time.
The less debris there is in the first place, the more effectively the lawn sweeper brushes will work.
Tip 8: Empty The Lawn Sweeper Hopper Regularly
Filling the hopper up with too much debris will weigh it down and could result in the bottom of the hopper dragging along the ground, catching bits of debris along the way. This can result in unnecessary wear and tear to the hopper bag.
Make sure to empty the hopper at regular intervals and do not wait for it to fill up to the brim before dumping the debris.
Tip 9: Mulch First And Then Sweep
Mulching (i.e. “chopping”, “cutting”, “shredding”) the debris before sweeping it up will make your lawn sweeper brushes work more effectively.
That is because smaller, softer bits of debris will be easier to sweep up and will also prevent the lawn sweeper brushes from getting clogged up.
Also, the debris will take up less volume in the hopper bag, meaning you won’t have to dump it as often.
How do you mulch?
As long as there are no large, tough bits of debris on the lawn, simply run your lawn mower over the affected area several times, and then go over the mulched area with your lawn sweeper.
When using a tow behind, you can carry out both tasks in one go and save time. Your riding lawn mower will shred, and your tow behind lawn sweeper will sweep. An elegant synergy.
Tip 10: Get Rid Of The Big Stuff First
If possible, remove large sticks or vines by hand before sweeping. This should ensure you don’t damage the sweeper brushes, clog up the chute or make the wheels lock. Pull out a rake (see Tip 12 below) and do a quick drag through any areas that have a lot of sticks, vines or moss.
Tip 11: Drive Straight
When using a tow behind lawn sweeper, drive your lawn tractor/riding mower in long straight lines as much as possible and try not to make sharp turns. Otherwise, the wheels of the sweeper might lock.
Tip 12: Pull Out The Rake
We are not saying you should go back to raking. We are saying that using a rake to pull debris from fences and edges into the center of your lawn will allow you sweep up more with your lawn sweeper. A rake will always have its uses. In this case, it will enhance your lawn sweeping experience.