Maintaining your outdoor power equipment

Outdoor equipment can suffer from the elements even if it has been kept in a shed or garage. Water and air can cause rust, which in turn can damage some or all of your power equipment. If you haven’t used your lawn mower since last fall, then you should definitely check it over before use. With summer fast approaching, it’s time to do a spring clean on the power tools.

Good maintenance is important for your own safety, and to prevent needlessly having to re-buy the equipment, which can be expensive. Having a seasonal or regular check up will save you both time and money.

Handy hint and tips for taking care of you power equipment:

Always have a lubricant and oil on-hand for cleaning trimmers, edgers and lawn mowers. Clean the inside of a trimmer to remove any built up debris from inside and along the cutting line. For hedge trimmers, make sure the cutting blade is cleaned and sprayed with a lubricant. Doing this after each use, will not only prolong the life of the power tools, but will actually allow you to get on with the next job more quickly.

Always ensure the chain on a chainsaw is rust free by cleaning it thoroughly and covering it up when it’s not in use. It might require some oil as well a good clean of any leftover debris. Dust from wood or metal can seriously damage your power equipment, so prolong their life by cleaning them regularly.

Maintain sharp blades by getting an expert to sharpen any that are blunt. A blunt blade could actually do you more damage by slipping off. If in doubt, get the manual out.

Power tools for all seasons

Seasonal checks should be made for oil, tire pressure and any gasoline filters should be cleaned. Remember that any petrol should not be kept over 30 days as it quickly deteriorates. Fuel must be carefully disposed of and in a law-abiding manner. For each seasonal use, make sure that the fuel tanks are emptied and clean out both the tank and the cap. Take precautions when you do so and consult the manufacturer’s handbook.

For long-term storage, find a dust-free, frost-free solution. Save space in garages or sheds by hanging on a wall. This helps to keep items from being damaged. Don’t forget properly fitting cases to cover. If you need to move your tools, make sure they are properly secured in the trunk of your car. Always ensure the hose and wires are completely and correctly wound, as this will prevent the wires from tearing or being exposed. If wires are exposed, then you should not use the equipment until an electrician has looked at it.

It’s helpful to follow the advice given on PSEP’s Blog, which provides up to the minute information about a range of power tools and equipment. They have an excellent blog on their website which gives users of power tool equipment some expert advice and tips for good maintenance.