Mower Life Expectancy

  • Thread starter GrassRoots Lawn Care
  • Start date

GrassRoots Lawn Care

I am sitting here trying to come to a good, solid figure for my average annual overhead concerning equipment upkeep and total costs. How many years can I expect to get out of a quality commercial mower (eXmark, Scag, Toro, ect.). Proper daily and routine maintenence are a given. I know this varies from mower to mower, so I will pose the question for three categories; belt drive walk behinds, hydro walk behinds and ZTR riders. I have only been doing this a few years and cannot rely on my experience concerning this, so can I draw upon yours? Thanks in advance.<p>----------<br>Mike Reynolds,<br>GrassRoots Lawn Care, Florida


LawnSite Gold Member
I know if some Choppers in my area that are around 12 years old. I feel the life expectancy of anything is based upon the owners ability to maintain it. There will be normal wear and tear just like the truck pulling the mowers but regular oil changes and air filter maint. will add much life to the engine, deck maintenance........keep it in the grass and out of the dirt. I have got wear under one of my decks now because of sandy accounts..........I may give them up, don't even mow the areas with sand anymore because of it.<p>Homer


LawnSite Bronze Member
Somerset, NJ
I think there are way too many variables to answer that one. Maintenance, what you are using it for, is the engine powerful enough for the particular machine, etc. My first mower 4 years ago was a nasty beat up looking 48&quot; belt drive Kees that made stripes you wouldn't believe and vacuumed leaves like you wouldn't believe. My mechanic found a serial number on it 1 day & determined it was built in 1985. I couldn't believe it was that old. I mow a couple of 34 - 2 acre commercial sites that are downright nasty, so I try to mainly use the cheaper belt drives on them because I know they are cutting into the life expectancy of the mowers. If you are only mowing nice plush lawns all the time you're going to get more life out of the machines. I've thought about the same question many times & I feel there are too many variables, so I just try to buy the best piece of equipment I can afford at the time.

Eric ELM

Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
Chicago, IL USA
Since I'm waiting for the rain to go by, I'll give you my theory. It depends a lot on the engine and the filtering system how long an engine will last. I feel the Donaldson filtering system is the best out there for us commercial guys. It also depends on if you have oil coolers for the engine and/or the hydro system how long a mower will last. I've heard of engines lasting over 6,000 hours with a Donaldson filter and coolers on a Chopper. My dealer also a lawn care owner, has one like this, but you can believe he takes care of them. That is another important key to longevity, regular oil changes. I have a Kohler on a Chopper that has over 2,850 hours and still runs like new and still don't need any oil added between changes. Now if you get a diesel engine with a Donaldson filtering system, they figure the average life will be 12,000 hours with regular maintenance. This new diesel Chopper I just got will last me for 20 years putting on around 600 hours a year. By then I'll be 77 and ready to retire. :)<br> <br>Now if you have a cheaper air filtering system on an engine and don't change oil but every 200 hours like some guys, don't expect it to last long. Another key thing is don't over fill the engine with oil. That is what causes the Kohler engines to have lifter noise. I get a lot of email about lifter noise. I tell them, check the oil on a level surface and I bet it's over filled, if so drain some out and try it again. It fixes the problem. The rain has stopped, so off to work, see ya!!<p>----------<br>&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Eric@ELM&lt;/a&gt;<br>The Grass is always Greener on the other side of my competitors fence

AGG Lawn Maintenance

LawnSite Senior Member
Guys in my area up date every 4 years. It all depends on:<br>1 How many lawns you do.<br>2 Who uses your mowers.<br>3 The maintenance.<br>I think if you cut alot of lawn 100 + you should up date every 4 years. Just my opinion. Travis AG&G Lawn Maintenance