c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Fuel vapors are explosive and flammable. Engine exhaust fumes contain carbon monoxide and can cause serious illness or death:
• Run the engine only long enough to move the machine to or from storage.
• Machine fires and structure fires can occur if a machine is stored before allowing it to cool, or if debris is not removed from around the engine and muffler, or if stored near combustible materials.
• Do not store vehicle with fuel in the tank inside a building where fumes may reach an open flame or spark.
• Allow the engine to cool before storing the machine in any enclosure.
Preparing Machine for Storage
1. Repair any worn or damaged parts. Replace parts if necessary. Tighten loose hardware.
2. Repair scratched or chipped metal surfaces to prevent rust.
3. Remove grass and debris from machine.
4. Clean under the deck and remove grass and debris from inside chute and bagger.
5. Wash the machine and apply wax to metal and plastic surfaces.
6. Run machine for five minutes to dry belts and pulleys.
7. Apply light coat of engine oil to pivot and wear points to prevent rust.
8. Lubricate grease points and check tire pressure.
Preparing Fuel and Engine For Storage
If you have been using “Stabilized Fuel,” add stabilized fuel to tank until the tank is full.
NOTE: Filling the fuel tank reduces the amount of air in the fuel tank and helps reduce deterioration of fuel.
If you are not using “Stabilized Fuel:”
1. Park machine safely in a well-ventilated area. (See Parking Safely in the SAFETY section.)
NOTE: Try to anticipate the last time the machine will be used for the season so very little fuel is left in the fuel tank.
2. Turn on engine and allow to run until it runs out of fuel.
3. For machines equipped with key switch, turn key to off position.
IMPORTANT: Avoid damage! Stale fuel can produce varnish and plug carburetor or injector components and affect engine performance.
• Add fuel conditioner or stabilizer to fresh fuel before filling tank.
4. Mix fresh fuel and fuel stabilizer in separate container. Follow stabilizer instructions for mixing.
5. Fill fuel tank with stabilized fuel.
6. Run engine for a few minutes to allow fuel mixture to circulate through carburetor on gas engine or fuel injectors on diesel engine.
Engine storage procedure should be used when vehicle is not to be used for longer than 60 days.
1. Change engine oil and filter while engine is warm.
2. Service air filter if necessary.
3. Clean debris from engine air intake screen.
4. On gas engines:
• Remove spark plugs. Put 30 mL (1 oz) of clean engine oil in cylinder(s).
• Install spark plugs, but do not connect spark plug wires.
• Crank the engine five or six times to allow oil to be distributed.
5. Clean the engine and engine compartment.
6. Remove battery.
7. Clean the battery and battery posts. Check the electrolyte level, if your battery is not maintenance free.
8. Close fuel shut-off valve, if your machine is equipped.
9. Store the battery in a cool, dry place where it will not freeze.
NOTE: The stored battery should be recharged every 90 days.
10. Charge the battery.
IMPORTANT: Avoid damage! Prolonged exposure to sunlight could damage the hood surface. Store machine inside or use a cover if stored outside.
11. Store the vehicle in a dry, protected place. If vehicle is stored outside, put a waterproof cover over it.
Removing Machine From Storage
1. Check tire pressure.
2. Check engine oil level.
3. Check battery electrolyte level, if your battery is not maintenance free. Charge battery if necessary.
4. Install battery.
5. On gas engines: Check spark plug gap. Install and tighten plugs to specified torque.
6. Lubricate all grease points.
7. Open fuel shut-off valve, if your machine is equipped.
8. Run the engine 5 minutes without the mower or any attachments running to allow oil to be distributed throughout engine.
9. Be sure all shields and guards or deflectors are in place.