Am I supposed to wash out the deck every time I mow? ZTR

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by TX Mudder, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. TX Mudder

    TX Mudder LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    I just bought an 07 Scag Tiger Cub 48" with the Kaw 19. I will pick it up tomorrow.

    I have heard about people pressure washing the bottom of the deck out (unless I misunderstood) and I asked the dealer about it.

    He said to use a blower to clean the outside of the deck but not to use water on the bottom unless I really needed to, and then only infequently.

    What is the right way? I am just mowing my own 2.5 acres maybe once a week, so it will not get a ton of use. But I want this major purchase to last a long long time.

    I already plan to do the oil changes as per the manual and to grease the zerks frequently. I just don't want to screw up and make this mower die early.

    Thanks for your help.
  2. PerfectEarth

    PerfectEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,734

    If you're mowing on a typical scedule on dry turf, I would not worry about every mowing. In wet conditions, you might flash a hose up there real fast to de-grass it. I occasionally spray the bottom of my 36" scag at work if it's after a wet mowing.

    Just check periodically for build-up. If I have hard buildup, I'll scrape it off with a putty knive. I've read that the Fluid Film product can greatly prevent build-up when applied underneath your deck.
  3. wolfsburg57

    wolfsburg57 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 23

    Watch the pressure washing thing. That will drive water into places you'd rather not have it.
  4. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,181

    TX Mudder,

    Your dealer cautioned you about using water on the bottom of your mower deck???????????? I don't know if that's the stupidest thing I ever heard, but it has to be right up near the top. Does he think the deck is made out of sugar? Pressure washing it is perhaps an unnecessary overkill, but I've been hosing the grass from the underside of my mowers for about 50 years now. Haven't ever had one dissolve on me yet. The reason I wash them off after every use is that I have always stored my mower(s) in my garage which is attached to my house, and I don't like the stink of decaying grass.
  5. TAZ

    TAZ LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 344

    yuummmmmy.... the smell of week old wet deck buildup fermenting away in a hot garage............. gag... can't understand why you don't like that Larry.... lol :)

  6. TAZ

    TAZ LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 344

    if it's wet out of if your mowing in spring and fall when the folliage is full of moisture it wouldn't hurt to scape out the buildup with a putty knife. If you have an atv jack or a jungle jack it only takes a second to get it lifted up to where you can give it a quick scrape.

    In the summer months when it's dry you may not get much buildup at all under there. Depends on the grass and blades. In short though just look up under there and let what you see determine when you scrape it.

  7. Mic_bug

    Mic_bug LawnSite Member
    from N.B. MI
    Messages: 201

    I am waiting for them to put that as a fragrence by ol spice:drinkup:
  8. TX Mudder

    TX Mudder LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    Well I picked it up today.

    Got it home and mowed the yard. I mowed for 1.5 hours per the hourmeter and I probably have another half hour to mow tomorrow (I had somewhere to be and had to stop.)

    As a first time zero turn rider, this was quite an eye opener. I can't believe you guys get paid to do this. Maybe if I did it 8 hours a day 6 days a week it would get old, but it was like riding a go kart lol.

    I mowed it down to 4" today. It had grown over a bit since I was shopping for mowers instead of actually mowing. I'll probably cut it down to 3 this weekend.

    How fast am I supposed to go while mowing? Is it just a "seat of the pants" thing, in that if the cut quality isn't what I want I need to slow down?

    I didn't do too bad for the first time out. I did hit the AC unit once but other than that I was getting pretty close to eveything without hitting stuff. Going around trees is just about easier than going in a straight line. I didn't leave many ruts but it's obvious a gradual turn is better unless you want to chance leaving ruts.

    I was going to wash it out but since it was hot I didn't know if that was OK, so I parked it in the garage not washed. The above post makes me think the garage is going to stink if I keep doing that so maybe I'll try the hose and see. As long as I don't get water on the hot engine it shouldn't hurt anything right?
  9. steve45

    steve45 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,325

    I've read here that pressure washing can cause problems by getting water into spaces were it won't dry. There are probably places where several plates are stacked, or the spindles mount to the deck, that could trap moisture. I clean mine with a long nozzle on an air hose.

    Don't forget to blow out the engine cooling fins. It's a good idea to periodically remove the flywheel housing and blow it out good.

    Since you won't be putting many hours on the mower, I'd recommend more frequent servicing than what the book recommends.
  10. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,181

    Welcome to the Homeowner's Commercial-ZTR Club. The uninitiated may think we're nuts, but they don't know what they're missing.:cool2:

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