lawn mower cleaning tools

Cleaning your lawn mower might not seem like a very important job, but it is possibly one of the most important jobs you can do if you want your mower to live a long and useful life.

Moisture is the enemy of all machinery but especially lawn mowers. And that’s because grass stuck to the mower causes two serious problems. First it traps moisture on the surface of the metal and then, as the grass starts to decompose, it turns acidic. The acid will happily eat your mower.

Wet grass needs to be cleaned from the mower after every use ideally. That realistically won’t happen. So at the very least, the grass needs to be removed from the under side of the mower before winterising, as that’s when most of the damage occurs.

Damaged mower deck Damaged mower deck

Lack of basic cleaning

This mower deck was simply neglected. Comically, the deck appears to have corroded at the unused washout port first.

Damaged mower deck

Water-less cleaning

I'd love to use the power washer, it would save a ton of time, but it's not the right tool for this job.

I do use the power washers on the grass bags.

Mower deck cleaning Mower deck rust proofing Mower deck undersealing

Undercoating the deck

This mower deck was caught just in time. I cleaned, rust treated and then undercoated the deck.

I've included these products below.

Although I’ve listed a power washer here, I’m not a fan of power washing equipment such as lawn mowers. Problems can occur when pressurised water is directed electrics, pulley’s and bearings.

The water enters through the seals and becomes trapped which then corrodes and causes failure.

I much prefer to remove the deck grass with a metal scraper. The engine bay and trans-axle grass, I use compressed air and a stiff brush.

The main areas that must be cleaned, include:

  • Deck underside
  • Deck top side
  • Trans-axle cooling system
  • Engine air cooling system

In this post I’ve listed some of the more useful products for cleaning and protecting your mower.

Some of the pictures on this page link to Amazon.com where you can check price and delivery of productsWe are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.


simpson power washer

The Simpson washer is powered by the smooth, dependable and powerful horizontal shaft GC 190 Honda. It's fitted with a maintenance free pump that pushes out 3200 psi. Simpson have a great name and they know pressure washers.

This washer comes with quick change nozzles which allows for greater control. The washer is shod with soft tires which reduces vibration on the washer. Picture links to Amazon.com


Deck Cleaner

Lawn mowers deck cleaning can be a pain in the jacksie, but if you've got the right tool it can be almost enjoyable... Ok, no, it's never going to be enjoyable!

But the right tool does make it less of a chore. This simple cleaning tool has a scraper on one end and a stiff brush on the other. The handle is nice and long, as are the bristles. Pretty cool tool! Picture links to Amazon.com


wire brush

I like these type wire brushes as your hand is protected by the handle. A mower deck will be rusty and so will require a quick rub of a wire brush if you intend rust proofing and undercoating. You won't need to remove all the rust, just the loose bits, and I advise wearing a respirator. Picture links to Amazon.com


Rust Converter

Rust-Oleum is pure witchcraft, you can spray this stuff straight onto a rusty surface and it will instantly bond and create a rust proof paint-able surface.

Just remove loose rust with a wire brush and your set. This is a pack of 2 rattle cans, however if you're doing both sides of your deck you may need to get the four pack. You will need to use a respirator and spray in a well ventilated area. Picture links to Amazon.com


underbody coating

This is the same stuff that goes on the underbody of your car or truck. It is great at protecting the metal from flying debris and it has the added benefit of sound deadening.

I like to hit the deck with a coat of this stuff, after I've applied the rust converter. You may need tow to three cans to complete a mower deck as it goes on pretty thick, you'll need a respirator with this stuff. Picture links to Amazon.com


3M respirator

I love 3M products, there great quality and I confident in there performance as I've been using them since forever. The silicone respirator is comfortable, durable. I use it when welding and cleaning old grass and dust from lawn mower decks and engines.

I wear glasses in the workshop and anybody that wears glasses and a respirator will know the value of the 3M downward facing vent. Fogged glasses drives me crazy!!! Picture links to Amazon.com

Auto Technician and Writer at | Website

John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Lawnmowerfixed.com. I've been a mechanic for over twenty years, I use my knowledge and experience to write "How to" articles that help fellow gear-heads with all aspects of mechanical repairs, from lawn mowers to classic cars.