Last Update: 10 Jan 2021

How To Start A Zero Turn Mower?

James Kelly
James Kelly

Hi! This is James. I'm a professional writer and working on this field for a long time. Basically I love to write about everything related to tools, diy and home improvement. All my writings speak for itself as I'm passionate about this. I love to explore new things as well as new places whenever I get free time. You'll never find me free for this reason!

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Those who own a big yard, mowing is a regular job to make the field fresh. But this is very time consuming if it is done by bare hand. Technology has put an end to this situation by inventing the automated zero turn mower. So we are here today with the concept of how to start a zero-turn mower.

Generally, a zero turn mower has a 4 stroke cylinder with a dual ignition switch. The start-up fuel rating of the machine has a value of around 80 to 90. The governor type of machine is fully mechanical. An external built-in cooler is integrated to cool down the oil and it is applied to the oil storing tank.

Responsible Components To Start The Machine

An automated zero turn mower has many components responsible to start the engine. Because the product is very big and all the requirements for starting are also vast. Some of the components run at a time when the engine is ready for ignition. The others have their purpose and run as per the requirement of the driver’s condition. Here are the responsible components,

Power Source

The power source is the main component by which all the other components can run up to their potential. As there are so many components, the required energy is pretty much vast. The power is around 22 to 28 horsepower.

This section powers up all the components including the parking and brake control. The continuity of the power supply doesn’t seem to be unifrom. Because a little portion of the power gets lost due to unavoidable friction force.

Starter Component

Here starter refers to the voltage requirement for the power source to start the mower. The standard value of the voltage eligibility is around 10 to 15 volts. But there are 2 types of starter,

Electric Starter:

The electric starter is a simple objective starter. It is used for domestic purposes. The average output of the starter is 12 volts and extra power is supplied by the complementary battery source.

Industrial Starter:

This type of starter is mainly for the profit-making situation and the applied area is the industrial area. As the industry has to conduct a lot of energy, so several starters are connected parallelly.

Charging System

Charging the whole battery before the ignition of the mower is pretty much necessary. Because some components like indicators, headlights, lead screws, etc need to be run at a time while starting the mower.

So the charging capability is integrated with the machine and the voltage requirement is around 15 to 20 volts. Also, the standard current supply requirement of the machine is around 10 to 15 amperes.


Ignition is one of the steps to make a part of an electrical pulse by the spark plug. But polarity is a big issue here. The negative polarity is needed to initiate the ignition of the starter portion of the mower.

But to create the polarity, you will have to give the electrical circuit of the ignition chamber, voltage difference. The optimal voltage is needed around 10 to 12 volts to polarize all the negative atoms to start the mower.

Applied Fuel

A big fuel capturing storage is used to retain the needed fuel mixture to initiate the starting. The fuel is not a single component of liquid. There is also a rating value to denote the proper mixture of the fuel.

The mixture of the fuel includes the unleaded gasoline and the other component is hydrocarbon called octane. The optimal rating value for both of the mixture of the fuel is exactly 87 or higher depending on fuel storage size.

Spark Plug

A spark plug is a common mechanical component that can be seen in almost every vehicle. But a spark can be created in many ways and it differs based on the vehicle. A zero-turn mower used the electrical pulse as a spark plug.

Cylinder Exhaust

The power-consuming level is determined by the number of exhaust cylinders. The total number of exhaust cylinders in a zero turn mower is 4. All the strokes of the engine are four and the exhaust pipe is singular.

how to start a zero turn mower

Steps To How To Start A Zero Turn Mower

If you don’t know how to start a zero-turn mower, get ready to learn about it. We have read the manual properly and come to an easy learning method with detailed infromation. These steps have been examined by one of us to make sure the proper safety and the whole functionality. Here are the steps,

Check The Fuel

Before running an automobile, it is always recommended to check the oil or the fuel level inside the storage. As the fuel is gasoline and octane, it may vanish or finish due to the regular use of the mower. So it may require refilling and the oil container may need to be refiled to avoid any kind of interruption.

Also, the molecules of the mixture of the gasses are very unstable. If they are not pressurized, the molecules will burn themselves to the open air. So you have to check if there is any leak on the fuel cylinder. Because this will cause a big explosion and damage the vehicle.

Clear The Mowing Area From Hard Objects

A zero-turn mower consists of a high hardness steel blade. But those blades are customized to cut the grass only. So any kind of hard object that may get consumed by the mower deck, can cause damage to the mower blade. So make sure to collect every little rock, brick, or any kind of hard material from the mowing ground.

Lock The Steering And Brake System

The steering control can be initiated by the help of the longitudinal handlebar situated right in front of you. There is not a driving wheel in this automobile. To lock the steering you just need to bend them to the edge. To control the movement, put the handle back on and try moving them ahead or reverse.

The brake system is very pretty strong for this kind of vehicle. The hydraulic brake has been used to the back portion. To lock the brake you just need to do the same as steering-controlling. But if one handlebar is not in the equilibrium position, the vehicle will not be stopped until the brake is locked.

Adjust The Seat As Per Requirement

The Seatpost is situated at the top of the mower deck. Before starting the machine it is required to adjust the seat of the vehicle to avoid falling. The seat can be adjusted at a range of 55 to 75 cm above and the back panel can be widened up to 15 cm. Also, don’t forget to put the seat belt on.

Move The Mower Deck To The Transport Position

Now it is time to select the transport position of the deck. But before that, you need to understand how the transfer paddle works. The paddle is on the same side and they are situated at a series combination. There are 2 functional approach to work with the left side deck paddle,

Deck Elevating Paddle:

The deck elevating paddle is situated top left corner of the deck paddle controlling side. This is used to lift the deck to the transport position. The paddle is covered with a black substance.

Deck Discharge Paddle:

The deck discharge paddle is situated at the bottom left corner just under the elevating paddle. This functional paddle is used after the mowing job is done to lower the mower deck.

Intercept Your Blade Switch Down

After lifting the mower deck, it is time to intercept the blade switch. The blade is situated inside the main chamber of the mower deck. It is also movable according to deck movement. There is a switch beside the ignition key that can be used to manipulate the position of the blade.

Activate The Parking Brake

The parking brake should be activated before mowing for real-time safety preparation. To activate the parking brake, you have to make a move to both of the handlebars that are at a longitudinal position. The 2 handlebars should be pushed at the end towards the parallel axis of the handlebar.

Make A Move To The Throttle Controller

The throttle control is needed after the parking brake position has been set. The frequency of the velocity is being controlled by the throttle controller. The shaft should be placed in the middle position to take over the average speed. For low speed, the shaft should be in the bottom passion. To achieve top speed the shaft should be at the top position.

Control The Choke Panel

The chock key is very important and without it, the mower cannot initiate the pre-heating. There are 2 controlling methods for the choke key. These methods will determine the starting. This control depends on the circumstances of the state of the vehicle.

Pull Up The Key:

If the mower is cold and hasn’t been used in a couple of hours, the chock key must be pulled up. This is done because the mower needs to be warmed up before the spark plug is activated.

Push Down The Key:

While mowing the choke key must be pushed down. Because the vehicle will be in full throttle and the velocity will be around 20 to 25 km per hour. This is done to avoid extra heating.

Select Your Desired Tank

There is a crankshaft that is situated at the intersection point of the two different materials containing the cylinder. One of the tanks will contain the oil and the other tank will contain the mixture of gasoline and octane. You just need to turn the shaft to clockwise to select the desired fuel tank to start the mower.

Set Up Your Required Deck Height

The deck height controlling panel can be found under the Seatpost but slightly to the right. There are different slots available in the height selection panel. The range of height can be manipulated around 35 to 90 cm. It depends on the grass height of your target mowing ground.

Control The Starting By The Ignition Key

This key is used to start the vehicle. The key can be rotated either clockwise or anti-clockwise. In the beginning, it will be in the left-most position. To start the mower you need to turn the key clockwise right-direction. This will initiate the run mode and make ready the throttle controlling section.

This is the final step for starting a zero-turn mower. The controlling handlebars are the only component that needs to be handled with caution. Finally when you need to park the vehicle somewhere, no need to pull up the ignition key.

Safety Concerns

Safety is the main target of any kind of vehicle. Because there are so many issues to get hurt from a vehicle. Such as flaws in the control and brake system, tire not inflated, the deck not working, the seat doesn’t adjust, etc. So as you don’t know what is coming, you have prepared yourself to tackle those situations. Here are safety concerns that must be maintained,

Put Your Seatbelt On

Speed related to any vehicle can cause an accident. Because high-velocity crates a high kinetic force to the human body and for that reaction force is also increased. So getting hurt is a common issue.

Before starting the vehicle, the first and foremost thing to be done is to put your seat belts on. You don’t know what will happen if you cannot control the speed of the mower. The seat belt is included with adjustable cables.

Do Not Start In Front Of The Fire

We know that the used fuel for the mower consists of 2 composite liquid materials. The first one is gasoline and the second one is an explosive hydrocarbon called the octane. These 2 are very flammable materials.

A little flame from 1 single match can destroy the whole vehicle. So you need to be careful while pouring the oil into the oil container. Make sure there are no fire sources around you and no smoking is allowed.

Eye & Ear Protection

This protection is the basic level for any kind of vehicle-related operation. While mowing sometimes the wind can make the weed fall into your eye. For that, you may lose your eye. It is recommended to wear glasses.

Also, the sound created by the huge engine of the vehicle is very loud. The intensity of the sound is around 70 to 80 decibels. To protect the ear from this sound range you need to use a special noise cancellation headset.

Use Of Oil Consumer

An oil-consuming component or material has a unique technique to consume the molecules of the oil. Oil is a very sticky material and it becomes very hard to divide all the atoms and then consume it properly.

Sometimes accidentally a little amount of oil falls into the ground. It is normal and happens with all of us. So in this case you have to use silk. You just need to cover the oil with the silk. This is done to avoid any kind of explosion.

Wear Gloves And Safety Boots

Your hands will be controlling both of the longitudinal control system and the brake system. Also, the grip on the control section is pretty much necessary. For this, leather gloves should be used and those must be wet.

Now let’s talk about the protection of the leg. The leg will be in contact with the deck-position controlling paddle. So it is pretty much obvious to get your injured due to wrong commands. High rigidity boots must be used to avoid any distractions.

Read The User Manual Before Using

Reading the user manual before using any mechanical or electrical component is a very good habit. A zero-turn mower has different driving functionality and various uses of the components. So make sure to read the manual properly. If you need an expert then do it, but this cannot be missed.

Final Verdict

A zero-turn mower has a huge weight. For that, the chance of getting hurt is being increased. This type of machine should not be used if you are not an expert or at least trained. Because a little mistake can bring harm to you or maybe to the other persons.

Every mechanical component is related to risk. But that doesn’t mean the component is not useful. The controlling of the mower is a bit tricky. Because there is no steering wheel in front of the driver. There are 2 longitudinal handlebars to control the direction and the brake system.

It is highly recommended to read the manual for those who have no idea about this machine. Safety is the first and foremost thing that should not be taken lightly. If you have further confusion about how to start a zero turn mower, read the steps attentively.

How To Start A Zero Turn Mower? A To Z Description! 1