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Buying used Commercial mowers

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by HAS0586, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. HAS0586

    HAS0586 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    I have a question about buying a used, walk-behind mower. I'm looking at anything from 32" to 40". I do not have any experience with anything bigger than a 21", but I'm fairly knowledgeable about small engines. What should I look for and keep away from?

    Do I kick the tires.....!

    My goal is to stay debt free while building up my business. I do not have enough cash on hand to buy new.

    Any help greatly appreciated.
  2. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,954

    I would never buy new either. I'd keep my eyes open locally, but I would also set up an ebay account (if you don't already have one). The outfit that does our mowing always buys used mowers -- usually with Kawasaki engines. He will buy Exmarks as old as five years old, just so they don't have too many hours on 'em and haven't been abused. Rule of thumb on engine life: liquid cooled = 3000 hours. Air cooled = 2000 hours.

    You will probably pay more for a used unit in Feb/March, so nows the time to think about buying.

    Hope this helps. I hope you get advice from others here too. Kind regards.:usflag:

  3. bohiaa

    bohiaa LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,220

    it's real difficult finding used equiptment....

    the good stuff seems to be used up....

    from time to time I'll run across a co. that's going outta business and they have a few good things.

    But when you need equiptment you need it NOW.

    Good luck
  4. txgrassguy

    txgrassguy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,083

    Pretty much any machine that has the safety switches "field engineered" is a real good sign the remaining maintenance was ignored/not completed.
    Total engine hour life is essentially meaningless in and by it's self.
    I have had brand new Kawi motors blow in under two hundred hours and I have seen Kohler motors still with-in factory compression specs at 4000+ hours.
    The best thing is to look UNDER the machine if everything topside appears satisfactory. If the bottom of the machine is damage/oil stain/field engineered free than the unit could be okay. Think of it this way, if the previous owner took the time to keep the underneath correct, it stands to reason the rest was maintained.
    A classic example - earlier this year I bought a '04 ExMark Turf Tracer 36" hydro walk behind with a bull rider sulkie, in good shape, for $1,500.00.
    My equipment dealer saw it before I got it off my truck and his equipment resale value book listed it for $2,800.00 with out the sulkie.
    The deals are out there, just keep your ear to the ground.
  5. TimTim2008

    TimTim2008 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,772

    a little prayer too. :)

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