How to fix an Electric Lawn Mower?

Stuart Wellbert
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Vents Clogged

If you find that your electric mower isn’t starting or cutting, the first thing you should do is inspect the vents. It’s possible air has become trapped in the vents and temporarily clogged the motor by blocking the vents.

The first thing you need to do is remove any mulched leaves or debris in the body of the mower. Then pull the mower about a foot away from the nearest wall and place it on a flat, level surface.

Now, look at the vents on the outside of the motor housing. You should be able to see a bunch of holes. If the holes look clogged or covered, then blast some compressed air through them to open them back up. This should release any trapped air. Now, you should be able to start the motor and find that it cuts again.

If this doesn’t work, then the motor itself may have trouble. You can try unclogging the vents again, then testing the motor again to see if it works.

Extension Cord

Causes: Extension cords that are cheap or poorly made may short circuit under pressure from your lawnmower. To keep your cord in good shape, make sure you unplug it before you mow. Another way to put a stop to a frayed or faulty extension cord is to cover the cord with an outdoor extension cord cover.

Short Circuit

Cause: Lawnmowers that come with a removable, adjustable height feature use small transformers to adjust the height of the mower. Each of these transformers has fuses which may break or burn out. If your mower’s height keeps changing and you find yourself adjusting it more often than you should be, pay attention to the fuses and see if one of them needs replacing.


You flip the switch and hear the motor die. If it doesn’t start, examine the battery. First, check the acid level with a dipstick (most companies recommend 1/4–3/4) at the base of the filler holes inside the battery compartment. If filled above the indicator mark, carefully top up. Purchase distilled water if needed.

Replaced the battery? Perhaps the motor is burned out. If it’s a Briggs & Stratton, check the flywheel. If the flywheel is damaged, replace it; if it’s scorched, clean the flywheel’s surfaces and flywheel key and replace with a new flywheel.

If the flywheel is not damaged, check the starter gear. Remove the starter cover, then unscrew the starter cover bushing at the base of the motor and remove the bushing to expose the starter gear.

If the starter gear isn’t damaged, check the 1/4“1/2-inch-long squared section of rod sticking out of the outer flywheel. Place the starter ring, lining up the grooves, over the male end of the rod, then the female end onto the motor shaft. Mow the lawn.