Best Practices with a Reel Mower

Published: 27th April 2011
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Though using a reel mower (sometimes referred to as a push mower) is generally quite easy, edging with a reel mower can be tricky. The wheels located on either side of this machine will push the grass down which may cause it to be overlooked. The best thing to do is get as close to the edge as possible. The use of a string trimmer in conjunction with a push mower will give your lawn a flawless cut.

There is a difference in opinion when deciding the height at which to cut your grass. Some landscaping experts believe that cutting the grass low encourages the roots to strengthen. A push mower offers the operator the choice of how high or low they want their lawn to be cut. Some experts also think that longer grass has more of a water capacity that will help fight diseases. Whichever your preference, a push mower can deliver the lawn that will be aesthetically pleasing to you.

Sharpening the blade on your mower can not only improve its performance, it will lengthen its lifespan. The blades on a push mower become dull after several years of use, especially in lawns with pebbles. As the blades become dull, it becomes progressively more difficult to utilize the push mower. Not only do sharp blades cut grass better, they are easier on the back and shoulders of the user. If your push mower is hurting your elbows with vibrations, it may be time to sharpen the blades.

Following proper safety precautions is most important when sharpening push mower blades. Avoid pinching your fingers on the apparatus or cutting your skin on the blades. One of the easiest ways to sharpen the blades on a push mower is by utilizing a sharpening kit. This type of kit comes with instructions, a sharpening compound and a handle. After applying the compound with a paintbrush, crank the push mower backwards so the blades scrape each other to smooth down.

A push mower can easily have its blades sharpened by using conventional blade sharpening kits. However, sharpening kits are better than knife sharpening tools because they prevent damage and reduce the risk of cutting your fingers. If you have a power drill, a sharpening attachment is likely the most convenient way to sharpen the blades on your push mower. After sharpening, a light coat of oil on the blade will protect from corrosion setting in. Low acidity vegetable oil is a great option for protecting your push mower because it will not leave any harmful residue on your lawn.

Sharpening the blades on a push mower is probably the most difficult part of maintaining it; however it only needs to be done every few years. The clippings sprayed about by a push mower act as mulch that will enhance the health of your lawn. If your grass is getting high, cutting in thinner rows may be easier when using your push mower. All in all, using a reel mower boasts so many benefits that more people are starting to switch to them.

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