Why Is My Ryobi Lawn Mower Not Cutting Grass?

Ryobi is a well-known brand producing various products, including lawnmowers. However, like many products, these mowers may encounter issues every now and again, like failing to cut grass efficiently.

This can be a frustrating issue, especially if the mower is brand new or has only been used a handful of times.

Key Points:

  • Ryobi lawn mowers may encounter problems such as failing to cut grass efficiently.
  • Common causes of this issue include blade dullness or damage, a clogged deck, improper cutting height, and power issues.
  • Solutions to these problems include replacing or sharpening the blade, cleaning the deck, checking the belt, and adjusting the cutting height.

There are a couple of reasons that might be causing the issue, including blade dullness or damage, a clogged deck, an improper cutting height, and power issues. Luckily, several of these issues are easy enough to fix with a bit of elbow grease.

Blade Dullness or Damage

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The blade is the first thing you should check when your Ryobi lawn mower isn’t cutting grass as it should. Blade issues are common culprits behind this particular problem, as a dull or damaged blade won’t be able to chop the grass efficiently. This can do more harm than good to your lawn, so it’s best to remedy the issue as soon as you find it.

Replacing the Blade

Examine the blade on your lawn mower. If the blades are dull or damaged beyond repair, it might be necessary to replace them entirely. While this can be a nuisance, the good news is that replacement blades are typically readily available from various retailers, including Home Depot and Lowe’s.

When you purchase your replacement blades, ensure you choose an option that is compatible with your specific Ryobi lawn mower model. Additionally, it is recommended that you purchase OEM parts to ensure the best fit and performance.

Sharpening the Blade

If the blade of your Ryobi lawn mower is still in good shape but is definitely dull, sharpening instead of replacement can be the best solution. Sharpening the blades can restore their cutting ability and prolong their lifespan, so it’s well worth the effort.

You can use a few different methods to complete the task, including using a bench grinder, a rotary tool, or a sharpening stone. When sharpening the blade, ensure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions to a tee and wear protective gear, such as gloves and safety glasses.

In addition, it is recommended you balance the blades after sharpening them, as this helps ensure they rotate evenly and don’t cause additional damage to the mower or lawn.

Clogged Deck

A clogged deck is another common culprit preventing your Ryobi lawn mower from efficiently slicing through your lawn. This can happen when grass clippings build up under the deck, effectively creating a clog and preventing the blades from cutting properly. Here’s how to address this problem:

Cleaning the Deck

When dealing with a clogged deck, your first step should be to clean the underside of the deck. Start by turning off the mower and disconnecting the spark plug wire to prevent the mower from starting accidentally.

Next, tilt the mower on its side with the air filter facing up. Use a putty knife or a scraper to chip away any built-up grass clippings from the underside of the deck. If the grass is caked onto the mower and too hard to chip off, wet the underside of the deck with a hose to loosen things up.

Once the grass clod softens, scrape it from the mower deck. After scraping, use an air compressor with a nozzle or wand to get rid of any grass bits left over from cleaning.

Checking the Belt

Sometimes, cleaning the deck won’t resolve the problem. In this case, you’ll need to check the belt. If the belt is worn or loose, it can cause the blades to spin too slowly, resulting in poor cutting performance.

So, to remedy this problem, start by removing the belt cover on the deck and inspecting the belt for signs of wear or damage. If the belt is worn or damaged, replace it with a new one. If the belt is overly loose, adjust the tension by moving the idler pulley or adjusting the belt guide.

If you’re having trouble adjusting the belt tension, refer to your owner’s manual for further assistance.

Cutting Height

An improper cutting height is another common issue with Ryobi lawn mowers that fail to cut grass properly. Luckily, this problem entails a simple fix without any overly complicated steps, so you can be on your way in as little as a few minutes. Here’s how to adjust the cutting height:

Adjusting the Cutting Height

Before you start, check your owner’s manual for specific instructions on how to adjust the cutting height on your specific model. The exact steps may vary based on your Ryobi model, so you should be able to find specific instructions there.

Turn off your mower before attempting to adjust the cutting height. Generally, you’ll find a lever or knob that you can use to adjust the height of the cutting blade.

Once you figure out how to adjust the cutting height, you’ll need to figure out the best height for your lawn. This answer will hinge on the type of grass you have and the season.

For example, if summer is in full swing, it’s usually best to cut it shorter to keep it from drying out. Of course, avoid cutting it too short, as this can leave it susceptible to pests and diseases. On the other hand, it’s usually best to leave it longer during the winter to protect it from the cold.

Once you determine the best cutting height based on factors specific to your situation, adjust the mower accordingly. Remember, you should avoid cutting the grass too short, as it can cause problems. So, take no more than ⅓ of the total grass height at a time and slowly work your way down to the desired height over several mowings.

After adjusting the height, your last step is to test the mower on your lawn to ensure it’s set at your desired height. If it isn’t, adjust the settings until you achieve the desired results.

Power Issues

Power problems are another common culprit behind Ryobi lawn mower issues. If your mower isn’t cutting grass as it should, it could be the result of power issues. Here’s what you should check:

Checking the Battery

First, check the battery to ensure it has a full charge. If the battery is partially charged or dead, the mower won’t have enough power to cut the grass, leading to less-than-satisfactory results. Remedy this issue by charging the battery.

However, if the battery is fully charged but still isn’t working properly, try cleaning the battery terminals. Sometimes, dirt and debris can accumulate on the terminals, leading to complications with the battery and power.

If the battery is charged and the terminals are clean, try replacing the battery. Over time, batteries can lose their ability to hold a charge, resulting in power issues.

Checking the Power Cord

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If the battery isn’t the issue, the power cord is the next place to check. Examine the cord for visible signs of damage and ensure it is plugged all the way in. If the cord is damaged, you’ll need to replace it to restore power and function to the mower.

If the cord looks fine and is plugged in all the way, check the outlet. Verify the outlet is working by plugging in another device. If the outlet isn’t working at all, try plugging the mower into a different outlet.

If the above solutions don’t work, the problem may lie with the motor or another internal component. In these cases, it’s best to take the mower to a professional for repairs.


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Overall, the Ryobi lawn mower is a reliable and efficient tool for keeping your lawn looking neat and tidy. However, if you’re experiencing issues with it not cutting grass properly, there are several steps you can take to fix the problem.

Firstly, make sure the blades are sharp and in good condition. Dull blades can cause the mower to leave uncut grass and damage your lawn. Secondly, ensure that the throttle is set to full power to give the mower enough energy to cut through tough grass. Thirdly, avoid mowing wet grass and adjust the cutting height if necessary.

If you’re still having issues with your Ryobi lawn mower, refer to the user manual or contact Ryobi customer support for further assistance. With proper maintenance and care, your Ryobi lawn mower should provide you with years of reliable service.

Last update on 2024-06-16 / Affiliate links / Somes Images and Data from Amazon Product Advertising API

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