where does most engine/machine wear occur?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bobbygedd, Mar 2, 2005.

  1. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    okay, as u all know, i have no mechanical ability whatsoever. my question is, where does most engine wear, or overall machine wear occur? is it in constantly stopping and restarting? is it in running for long periods of time? is it in neglect as far as tune ups/oil changes? is it in being taken on and off a trailer constantly?
     
  2. DennisF

    DennisF LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 1,381

    The valve train and bearings are what wear the fastest. Piston rings will begin to leak after 1500 hours or so on a mower engine. That's was causes compression loss which in turn causes power loss. Keep the oil and filter changed so that it never gets dirty and you can get more life from an engine. Nothing will kill an aircooled engine quicker than dirt. The air filter is one of the most neglected items on a mower engine and if it is not kept clean it can cause early engine failure.

    I'm a gear head by birth and a grass cutter by choice. I'm also a maintenance freak when it comes to my vehicles and equipment.
     
  3. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    Most of the mowers, both commercial and residential, that I've seen that were "worn out" still ran and moved. What tends to happen is as a mower ages little things start to break down. A cable here, a bearing there, maybe a safety switch or a handle is worn out. Most people just rig the mowers up on these little things rather than actually repair or replace the worn out part. After you get enough worn out little things people start to not think of the mower as being as valuable as it once was (despite the fact that it is every bit as valuable to their business as the day they bought it) so they skip a greasing here and a oil change there. Before they know it they have a pile of junk that could have very well in very good shape if they had kept up on the little things.

    There is no one specific area to watch. You should occasionally go over the entire mower with a close eye and repair/replace anything that needs it. Don't skip anything. You should also get the owners manual out once a year and read it, particularly the maintenance section. You be suprised at what people never read or do.
     
  4. ince8728

    ince8728 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 249

    I would have to say neglect. Example: I bought a walker used with 1500 hrs on it, 2 weeks later I had 2 replace the motor (very long story). Someone i kno with the same machine Uses moble 1 synthetic, maintains the machine like it's his religion, oil change every 50 hrs, grease, the whole 9 yds, his walker has 3700 hrs on it at is running strong. Origional, YES origional motor. I will also be doing this for my new/used walker.
     
  5. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    ok , to narrow it down further. what is harder on the engine, long periods of running time, or the constant stop and start with short periods of running time
     
  6. DennisF

    DennisF LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 1,381

    Starting and stopping for short periods will cause more wear. Not allowing an air-cooled engine to warm-up to operating temperature can cause problems with bearings, rings and seals. Not operating at full RPM will also lead to early failure. Mower engines are designed to operate a maximum rpm for long periods of time.
     
  7. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    thanks dennis, that was really what i was after. i thought it would be the opposite, i thought long periods of run time would beat it up fast than stop and start.
     
  8. The landscaper

    The landscaper LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 845

    Just like a car. Its much easier on it to drive down the highway rather than stop and go.
     
  9. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Thanks also for that info Dennis...gonna keep that in mind.
     
  10. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,328

    We have a guy in our area that lets his engines run on the trailers, all day. He claims that his engine failures have gone way down..he is a Kohler guys.
     

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