2 mowers crapped out on me today

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Desoto_Lawn_Care, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. Desoto_Lawn_Care

    Desoto_Lawn_Care LawnSite Member
    from FL
    Messages: 49

    I just picked up a new account and the first mow was today, it's a decent sized residential yard about 1/4 acre on a lake in a nice subdivision. The backyard is fenced off so me and a friend hit the back with 2 pushmowers. The grass hadn't been cut for over a month because the house is for sale and the owners have moved out of town. Anyway, both of these pushmowers (one is a 22" Toro which always worked great until now and the other a 21" Honda) crapped out after 5-10 minutes of mowing. They just overheated? and shut right down. Then the pull cords were locked up when I tried to restart them. I know I REALLY do need a commercial walk-behind or 34" ZTR Commercial Gravely that I have my eye on and there is also very used Scag walk-behind for sale and that is in the works for next season, but not affordable right now. Anybody know why these pushmowers just crapped out like that? The Bahia grass was pretty high.

    BTW I offered that cut for free since I couldn't finish the backyard in time for a house showing, but she said it's ok and she will pay me the full amount once I finish the backyard (hopefully tomorrow.) I charged high for the first cut and then it's going to be weekly thereafter.
  2. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,085

    Did you check the oil? I know some of the Hondas have a shut-off if the oil's low. Just a thought.
  3. twj721

    twj721 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 619

    did you check under the deck to see if you had a chunk of grass hung in between the edge of the deck and the blade it happened to me last month thought that the engine had locked up could not even budge the pull rope . and if the grass was as tall as you said hopefull that is all it is Good luck .Tony J
  4. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,163

    Was the honda a home depot one or a commercial one? How old are the units?
  5. Desoto_Lawn_Care

    Desoto_Lawn_Care LawnSite Member
    from FL
    Messages: 49

    Yes, both mowers were full with oil. I always kept mine checked and maintained. My friends mower is a 21" Honda homeowner, it also had the normal level of oil. I checked underneath and there were no clumps of grass anywhere within the deck. It hasn't rained for 2 days so the grass was fairly dry. Mine is a few months old and my friends Honda is brand spanking new.
  6. SSS 18734

    SSS 18734 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 182

    how low were you cutting? if you were cutting way overgrown grass on the highest 5" setting, you should have been okay. But if you were mulching 8" grass down to 2" i'm not surprised your mowers crapped out on you.
  7. Desoto_Lawn_Care

    Desoto_Lawn_Care LawnSite Member
    from FL
    Messages: 49

    Both mowers were set to the very highest level from the start, just to be on the safe side, or so I thought.
  8. Vikings

    Vikings LawnSite Bronze Member
    from canada
    Messages: 1,657

    I have one of those 22" toros, they are not Commercial machines. When the cords locked up the blade was probably stuck with grass. That has happened to be more then once this spring, going through over grown grass.

    You have to tip it (air filter up) and push the blade to remove the clump. Pos of crap finned 22" blade.
  9. Desoto_Lawn_Care

    Desoto_Lawn_Care LawnSite Member
    from FL
    Messages: 49

    That's right, it is not a commercial pushmower. But I checked underneath both mower decks, and there were no clumps of grass. There were only a bunch of individual grass clippings left under the deck and in the discharge chute, but no big clumps. So I cleaned out all the grass in the deck and around the blade just to make sure and the damn pull cord was still stuck. I was mowing roughly 10-12 inches of overgrown, but fairly dry bahia grass. This is very puzzling to me. Anyway, I wish I weren't using homeowner equipment to tackle overgrown grass, but its all I have and can afford for the time being.
  10. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 2,994

    One of lawn care's mysteries, I guess!

Share This Page