How to Store a Lawn mower Outside

So you’ve got yourself a brand new lawn mower and there just isn’t any room in the garage to park the thing and you don’t have a tool shed or some other reasonable shelter outside. Fortunately, there’s no need to worry—all is not lost.

Tarps are relatively cheap, as are plastic storage boxes and even quick-assembly sheds that won’t set your bank account back. Most lawn mower manufacturers also offer lawn mower covers, typically sold separately from the lawn mower.

The thing is, there are plenty of options if you’re willing to look. Of course, you don’t want to end up purchasing something that’s going to come apart when exposed to the elements or that’s too weak to survive a decent thunderstorm.

Short-Term Storage

Short-term storage options are a dime a dozen. It’s long-term storage you have to worry about, especially as the winter months close in. If you don’t have to worry about that just yet, there are a number of things you can do to protect your lawn mower from the elements.

  • Park it under a heavy tree canopy
  • If you have a covered porch, use it
  • Lawn mower covers
  • Tarps
  • Store it up against the house, under the eaves
  • Pop up tents
  • Quick-assembly storage units

Using the trees is literally the last resort. If you have nothing else to cover your lawn mower with, push it under the thickest tree canopy in your yard. It won’t keep all the rain off your lawn mower but it will help a little.

Pushing it or driving it up under your house’s eaves is often helpful The only thing you have to worry about is rain runoff from the roof is capable of a waterfall effect. If it’s not fully protected, it may catch a lot of water anyway. It’s also no good for sideways rains.

Lawn mower covers are relatively cheap and largely universal. You can pick up a push or riding lawn mower cover from Amazon or Walmart for a relatively cheap price. For a little more money, you can invest in something like a 6×6 ShelterLogic Shed.

These are quick assembly sheds and provide more than enough shelter for lawn mowers. The only drawback is that they don’t keep out humidity very well.

Long-Term Storage

Long-term storage is less about where the lawn mower is going to go and more about the condition of the lawn mower before you store it. Long-term storage can be something as simple as a lawn mower cover. However, you have to prep your lawn mower for the long winter months ahead.

  • Remove the spark plugs
  • Remove the blades
  • Empty the oil tank
  • Completely drain the gas
  • Clean the mower thoroughly, especially the undercarriage
  • Replace the gas and add a treatment
  • Replace the oil

Treating the gas is pretty simple. All you need to do is add a good gas stabilizer. This keeps the gas from deteriorating over time. It loses its combustibility and when that happens, you may as well flood your fuel injector with water for all the good it will do you.

The stabilizer will maintain it until springtime rolls around again.

How to Store Different Kinds of Lawn mowers Outside

When most people hear the term, “lawn mower,” it automatically conjures an image of a push mower. However, there are several different types of lawn mowers, especially with combustion engines changing over to electric or battery on some platforms.

Gas-Powered Lawnmowers

We’ve pretty much covered the storage options for gas-powered lawn mowers above. Since gas power is easily the dominant lawn mower on the market today, it made sense to detail that one first. The biggest concern with gas is long-term storage viability, which can be eliminated with a gas stabilizer.

Battery-Powered and Robot Lawnmowers

These aren’t as common but they’re growing in popularity. We should probably include remote-control mowers on here too but they’re generally gas-powered. Storing the battery is imperative. If you have a battery-powered lawn mower, it needs to come inside so it’s stored in a room temperature environment.

Robot lawn mowers are expensive but popular and these types of lawn mowers need to be thoroughly cleaned and brought inside. Fortunately, these kinds of lawn mowers are not huge and you should be able to store them somewhere inside the house.

Electric Lawnmowers

Electric lawn mowers need to have their connection points taken care of. Wrap up the extension cord and store it away. Put a tarp or cover over the electric mower and make sure that the ports will never be exposed to water.

If you have a lot of humidity in your area, you may want to go the extra mile and place tape or some sort of plastic cover over the ports. Humidity can get inside and the changing weather (warm to cold and cold to warm) can cause problems with the humidity, including corrosion.

How to Store a Lawn Mower Outside Without a Shed

It doesn’t matter what kind of mower you have, so long as its well covered. Gas-powered mowers require a stabilizer while electric mowers need to remain dry. Without a shed, use what you can get your hands on but your best bet is a simple lawn mower cover.

They’re relatively inexpensive and you can even find covers or tarps on things like the Facebook Marketplace for far below market retail. Battery-powered mowers need covers as well and you should bring the battery inside with you.

The point where the contacts are placed on the battery should be wrapped in electric tape and covered up so they aren’t exposed to wet weather. Corrosion is also a concern when your mower is outside.

You just need to make sure that the mower is exposed to the outside air as little as possible.

Using a Lawnmower Cover

Using a lawnmower cover isn’t difficult. Most of them come in a variety of sizes so check the dimensions of your particular lawnmower before you make a purchase. Almost all lawnmower covers come with stretchy material at the bottom.

Stretch that material out and wrap it around the bottom sections of the mower, especially the undercarriage so rain that strikes the ground next to the mower doesn’t splash up on the bottom. So long as you prep the mower accordingly, the cover should be more than enough.

What happens when you store your lawnmower outside?

If you store it outside and prepare it for the long-term the right way, nothing. If you don’t prep it, you will have to deal with possible corrosion, bad fuel, and bad oil, as well as wet and corroded components.

Can you leave a lawnmower outside in the rain?

For the most part, you can leave it out in the rain if it’s covered. If you forget once or twice over the lifespan of the mower, it will probably be fine.

Can you leave a lawnmower outside in the winter?

If you prepare your lawnmower according to the above-listed standards and cover it properly, your lawnmower will be perfectly fine and ready to go when spring and summer roll back around.

Conclusion

Storing a lawnmower outside is pretty simple, especially in the short term. A decent cover or tarp is relatively inexpensive and easy to use. For long-term storage, some preparation methods are necessary but if you follow the above guidelines, your mower will run like it’s new when you finally take the cover off again.