A lawn mower has revolving blades that work by cutting grass and making the surface seem even. While freshly cut grass smells and looks great, cutting grass with a lawn mower with dull blades can be annoying.
If you’ve just bought a lawn mower, you might be wondering whether new blades need sharpening. This article answers that question while examining important elements surrounding lawn mower blades.
If you’re wondering when to sharpen your blades or when blade replacement is necessary, this article offers expert insight.
In This Article
- Do You Need to Sharpen New Lawn Mower Blades?
- Possible Negative Effects of Sharpening a New Blade
- How Often Should Blade Replacement Take Place?
- Does It Matter Whether the Blades Are Sharp?
- Do You Need to Balance New Blades?
- Regular Vs. Mulching Blades
- Signs that You Need a New Mower Blade
- Gator Versus Regular Blade
Do You Need to Sharpen New Lawn Mower Blades?
If you own a new lawnmower, there’s no need to sharpen the blade. Throughout the manufacturing process, blade sharpening takes place, which means that new mowers come with sharpened blades from the factory.
Some people think new blades need sharpening because of the paint finish on most replacement blades. You’ll notice that the finish is especially thick around the cutting edge, and it can feel dull to the touch.
The paint finish has various functions, including protection from injury, blade protection against damage, and the prevention of rust. Even though the protective finish makes your blade feel dull, you don’t need to remove it.
Possible Negative Effects of Sharpening a New Blade
Sharpening a new blade can potentially compromise its integrity and can cause it to become unbalanced. Unbalanced blades can exhibit a range of knock-on effects that cause considerable vibration when mowing.
Furthermore, it could place your spindle, engine, and blade shaft under considerable stress, which can result in a shortened lifespan.
How Often Should Blade Replacement Take Place?
If the blades show signs of considerable damage or if the edge is worn beyond repair, you might need new blades. Some common types of damage in lawn mower blades are curved edges and cracked blades.
Some lawn mowers have different recommendations for when the blades need replacement. It’s advisable to follow manufacturer recommendations. If you’ve misplaced the manual, the general rule of thumb is to replace the blades after every 200 hours of use. High-quality blades such as Oregon Mower Blades will easily give you 400 hours of use.
Keep an eye on your blades’ condition and how well they’re cutting your lawn so you’ll know when it’s time for a replacement. Remember, a badly damaged blade can break while being used and can cause injury and damage to the tool itself.
Does It Matter Whether the Blades Are Sharp?
If you’re like most lawn mower owners, you might wonder: “Do sharp mower blades make a big difference?” You might think that your lawn mowers blades will function just fine, even if they’re somewhat dull. However, while dull blades still cut grass, they will merely rip through grass and produce jagged tips.
Torn tips from dull blades make grass vulnerable to diseases and pests. Furthermore, the grass is likely to turn yellow or brown if cut using a dull blade. On the other hand, sharp blades provide a clean and healthier cut. They also trim grass neatly.
Most homeowners sharpen their lawn mower blades before the mowing season starts every year. However, if you mow your lawn almost daily for hours at a time, your blades will require sharpening twice a year.
Keep in mind that mowing over hard objects like rocks can harm mower blades and make them dull much sooner.
Do You Need to Balance New Blades?
Like most homeowners, you’ve probably wondered: “do new lawn mower blades need to be balanced?” Some mower blades arrive unbalanced and can vibrate considerably when used.
Balancing simply ensures that your blade’s weight is evenly distributed from one side to the other.
Typically, a blade becomes unbalanced during sharpening when one side undergoes more metal grinding than the other. In such cases, you simply need to use a balancer, which could be as simple as using a wall nail for testing balance and using a grinder to shave off the blade’s heavier side until it becomes balanced.
Regular Vs. Mulching Blades
The subtle differences in shape between regular and mulching blades make grass clippings seemingly disappear. Here’s how they’re different from each other:
3-in-1 Versus 2-in-1
Regular blades are at times called “2-in-1” since they can discharge chute or hurl them into a collection bag. Mulching blades are frequently referred to as “3-in-1 blades” since they perform three tasks rather than two. Mulching blades can bag or discharge clippings and cut them into fine mulch, leaving them on the lawn.
Regular blades are at times called “high-lift” since they’re meant to produce an aerodynamic lift on clippings that pull them up while flinging them through the discharge chute. On the other hand, a mulching blade produces a circulating air stream that guides the grass clippings toward the blade after being cut, unlike an ordinary blade’s one-directional lift.
Signs that You Need a New Mower Blade
People frequently ask, “How do I know if I need a new mower blade?” Watch out for these signs:
It’s common to see blades bending when you mow over rocks or other huge objects accidentally. Note that a bent, off-balance mower blade is a safety concern and might cause premature mower damage by damaging the bearings.
Signs of Gouges, Dents, or Missing Pieces
Deep gouges, dents, and missing pieces are a safety hazard. If there’s damage, it’s time to replace the blades. Pebbles and other tiny debris can be hurled at elevated speeds, which could cause lethal accidents. Beware that damaged blades increase the likelihood of items being dangerously propelled.
Gator Versus Regular Blade
Mulching blades push grass down while gator blades give a clean and even cut by providing a high lift that draws grass up. The high lift produced by gator blades makes them excellent for bagging operations.
When you purchase a lawnmower or a new set of blades, they might look like they aren’t sharp, and you may wonder if they need sharpening. They don’t. The blades come with a paint coat that will ultimately break off.
Nonetheless, paint thinner speeds up the process allowing your blades to function optimally. A crucial point to remember is that blades don’t have to be too sharp; this won’t enhance their efficiency in grass cutting. In fact, making them too sharp can prevent them from functioning correctly.