As with any machine, regular maintenance is important to get the most out of your lawn sweeper and make sure it lasts long.
Regular machine maintenance is a task that is easy to overlook.
We hope this article helps you avoid that.
Below are some tips and guidance to assist you with recognizing what to look for when giving your lawn sweeper a maintenance check.
Frequency Of Maintenance Checks
How often should you give your lawn sweeper a maintenance check?
Depends on how often you use it.
It’s not a good idea to wait until the machine shows signs of deterioration, as that means it will be underperforming.
We recommend a thorough check about once every three months if you’re using it on a weekly basis.
When doing an inspection for maintenance, move from the center of the lawn sweeper outward and deal with all parts in order, until you’re left with simply washing and cleaning the exterior.
Ensure Proper Assembly
One of the most common mistakes people make with a lawn sweepers is not assembling it properly to begin with.
That sets the machine off to a bad start that will likely end up in breakdowns.
And when the lawn sweeper does not perform as expected, it leads to frustration for you.
Before you start using your lawn sweeper make sure it is assembled properly.
Read the manual and watch instructional videos (if available). And if you have any doubts or struggle with the assembly, take it to a home and garden store for expert help.
Don’t be impatient to get started and skip over proper assembly.
As part of your maintenance routine make sure that there are no loose parts on the lawn sweeper.
After you’ve put the machine together properly, you can operate it with greater confidence.
And good assembly should reduce time spent on maintenance work over the coming weeks, months and years.
Study The Owner’s Manual
Before starting to use your lawn sweeper, make sure you have done all the things that the owner’s manual advises.
Not only is the manual going to provide you with information for safely operating the machine, but it’s also going to instruct you about how to carry out regular maintenance.
The first thing to learn when you start using a lawn sweeper is how the various mechanisms work, such as height adjustment, debris dumping, and tow-attachment.
Learning how to operate the machine makes it clearer what you need to look for during maintenance checks.
Parts To Check
Certain components of a lawn sweeper may wear out or get damaged faster than others.
Here are the major components:
- Wheels – the wheels are prone to suffer from wear and tear, so next time you use your sweeper, have a quick look to make sure the wheels are in good condition. If applicable, ensure the wheels are properly inflated, but always check that the joints on the axle are clean and well oiled.
- Brushes – The brushes are the “work horse” parts of your lawn sweeper. They are in direct contact with the debris, working hard to lift and toss it into the hopper. Check the condition of your brushes frequently (ideally before each use). Don’t wait too long before ordering replacements if they are worn out, because they are a crucial component to the successful operation of your lawn sweeper. If the brushes are in good shape but still don’t work well, then check that they are properly oiled and tightened in the right position.
- Hopper – If you wait too long before unloading collected debris, the hopper can get very heavy, causing the base of it to chafe against the ground, eventually resulting in tearing and ripping. To prevent this from happening make sure to dump the contents of the hopper before it gets too heavy. Another way to prevent damage to the hopper bag is to attach a strong tape to the base, thereby reinforcing the fabric where it might make unwanted contact with the ground.
- Chute – The chute is the opening through which debris is passed by the brushes to the hopper. When picking up large sized debris from your lawn, you may find that the chute gets clogged over time. That happens especially when picking up stones, twigs and other hard debris of larger sizes. Each time before you start using the lawn sweeper, do a quick visual check to make sure that the chute is clear and there is no debris caught inside.
Ordering Replacement Parts
Most lawn sweeper manufacturers sell parts directly online. We feature information about where to buy replacement parts in our lawn sweeper reviews.
Using the owner’s manual, you can identify the parts that are showing signs of wear and tear, so you can accurately order replacements ahead of time.
Clean After Use
It is best to clean the entire lawn sweeper after each use.
However, that might not always be practical.
You may have time to clean the entire lawn sweeper only occasionally, especially the exterior. And that’s fine.
However, it’s vital that you immediately clear out any build up in the hopper and chute before it has a chance to jam up the entire lawn sweeper mechanism.
Do not wait with the clearing of build-up. Do it right away, after each use.
Also, check the wheels after each use and make sure nothing has wrapped around the axles (pine straw especially tends to do that).
Unless you live in a year-round temperate climate, you probably will not be using your lawn sweeper in the winter.
It is important that you make sure you have properly “winterized” your equipment before storing it away, in order to keep it in condition while it is not in use.
Rust is one of the foes that can arise during long-term storage.
Before putting your lawn sweeper away for the winter, make sure to clean it thoroughly (including the exterior), repair anything that needs to be fixed (order new parts if you have to), and lubricate all moving parts with oil.
Give it a thorough final inspection before you store it away to ensure that it is in good condition.
Some sweepers have the facility to be folded away for storage so be sure to take advantage of this.
Cover it with plastic tarp to block out dust and moisture.
Then, hang it up by the hitch against the wall (if possible) to reduce weight-bearing load on the machine.