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A
"Left an message on Angie's List for the contractor. They contacted me within an hour and set up an appointment for the same afternoon. Mr.
" showed up on time and repaired the engine of the snow-blower in my driveway. Charges were reasonable and the snow-blower starts and runs like a dream. Mr.
also explained the problems that gasoline with ethanol cause with small engines and gave me tips to prevent carbureter clogging in the future.

-James W.

A
"I dropped off, and they called me a couple days later (sooner than they had estimated) telling me it was ready to be picked up. They flushed the fuel system. Fortunately," I haven't had to use it yet this winter, but I am counting on it starting right up when we get our next snow.

-JASON P.

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Local Articles in Wilmington

history of the lawn mower

Lawn mower repair

The average suburban lawn mower is a true workhorse, but you might not be maintaining it as well as you should. Here are some practical tips on troubleshooting common problems, how to make some lawn mower repairs yourself and how to maintain your mower so it keeps performing well year after year.

Gas-powered lawn mower
Lawn Mower & Power Tool Repair

Need a new lawn mower? Before you buy, learn what you need and how much a new riding lawn mower, reel, electric and self-propelled lawn mower will cost you.

Regular, preventive maintenance will prolong the life of your lawn mower. (Photo by Katie Jacewicz)
Lawn Mower & Power Tool Repair

Proper lawn mower maintenance can keep it running longer. Whether it's sharpening blades or getting a professional mower tuneup, follow these maintenance tips.

Failure to perform routine mower maintenance can lead to problems in spring. (Photo by Katie Jacewicz)
Lawn Mower & Power Tool Repair

If your lawn mower won't start, it might have a clogged air filter or bad spark plug. A lawn mower repair pro walks you through mower maintenance & start tips.

dirty lawn mower undercarriage (Photo by Katie Jacewicz)
Lawn Mower & Power Tool Repair

Experts in lawn mower maintenance say there’s a fix for common issues, but major problems often cost more to repair than buying a new lawn mower.

Angie's Answers

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The only time a carburator needs replacing is if you put some really corrosive cleaner in it that ate through the metal (usually aluminum), or if you have physically broken it.

Otherwise, carbs can be rebuilt - rebuild kits (that contain basically all the non-metallic parts, the primer bulb (usually) and carb gaskets) typically run $10-25. A tuneup (carb rebuild and new spark plug) with parts typically runs about $60-80 ($100-150 for rider mowers), although a lot of repair shops have $45-60 spring specials. Probably needs a sharpening too - another $10-15 or so when done as part of a tune-up.

By hiring someone to do it, I presume you mean taking it to a small engine repair shop with a good word of mouth reputation, and being sure to get a dropoff receipt and estimate in writing that you carry away with you.

If it runs at all, or ran last fall, this is probably all you need.

Compare this to the cost of a new mower - for a rider mower, no comparison of course - go with the carb cleaning and rebuild. However, for a standard 20-22 inch push power mower, replacement cost is about $140-250, depending on whether you go with a Walmart special or brand name, additional $100 or so if self-propelled or bagging type.

For a 10 year old push type power mower, if it sits outside all winter or is pretty rusty, since you are not mechanically inclined I would recommend getting a new mower - something like a Sears or Murray Ohio (at Target, WalMart, etc) plain-jane mower for about $150-180 unless you have steep hills or medical issues, then get the self-propelled model. A 20 inch or even 18 inch will do fine for a small lawn; if you have several lawns or a pretty big lawn area (over say 2500 SF) then you probably want a 22 inch - the extra path width makes quite a difference in how long it takes to mow.

If it sleeps in a shed or garage and is not rusting out, I would recommend a new one if the plain jane will do it for you, otherwise if the replacement one that you would buy is over about $250 I would go with the carb overhaul and tuneup.

I would STRONGLY recommend you get a 4 cycle engine - I swear by Briggs and Stratton rather than Tecumseh or other brands. 4 cycles start much easier and are less sensitive to fuel/air mix issues, and the plugs stay clean a lot longer. 2 cycles are lighter for the same horsepower which is why you see them a lot in outboard motors that are less than about 50-80 HP and in small generators and motorcycles, but they are a lot more tempermental about starting, especially in cold weather or after a long storage.

If you pay attention to proper winter storage procedure, rebuilding the carb on the old one should last you another 5+ years. I have a Murray Ohio with 4 cycle Briggs and Stratton engine that is 33 years old, lives in an unheated shed in a northern state, and has had nothing more than annual blade sharpening, oil change every few years, and one carb overhaul and plug cleaning (and ZERO new spark plugs) in its life, and starts by second pull every spring. The key is if you store it inside in a garage to run it dry each fall (so you do not have gas in the garage, for safety reasons in case it leaks out); if you leave it outside I fill the tank to the top so moisture cannot acccumulate from moist air "breathing" in and out of the tank due to temperature changes. I do this with mower, chain saw, leaf blower, weed wacker - all start on first or second pull in the spring (and throughout the summer). If you live in an area with a lot of moisture in the winter air (ours is very dry) you might have to add Heet or Sta-Bil to the fuel can (per instructions) before topping off tank.

You will find other people who say you HAVE to run it dry each season. Their theory is that if there is no gas in it then there is no gas to collect moisture or to evaporate and turn to varnish over the winter (though that generally takes a few years of sitting to happen). My theory is if it is filled with fuel it cannot dry out and leave varnish residue to block the fuel tube screen and fuel jets, plus it does not rust metal fuel tanks by being empty. To each their own procedure.

?

No personal experience on rider mowers but some with small rider tractors, but since you have gotten no response in 5 days, here is my 2 cents worth:

 

1) read the Consumer Reports and JD Powers reviews on rider mowers

 

2) from what neighbors have told me, TroyBilt are maintenance problem and not built very rugged, Sears tend to have transmission/drive train problems, those with John Deere say they were unhappy with the price but they run well and don't have extreme maintenance costs - so sounds to me like JD is best brand out there right now.

 

3) A recommendation also from personal small engine experience and neighbors - stay with Briggs and Stratton 4 cycle engines if possible, and stay away from 2 cycle engines - they are lighter and cheaper, but have a LOT more starting problems and tend to not last as long.

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Lawn Mower Repair reviews in Wilmington

A

Rating
Went to start up my snow blower (4PM) . Noticed my snow blower's electric starter was loose just before Blizzard '15 got started . .. Called around and no one was available or willing to do a on site call. Vinny agreed to come to the house when I explained the problem. Quickly re-attached the started in my garage as the snow continued.
Snowblower started up without a problem.
Perfect Emergency repair.
- David P.
F

Rating
Contacted him by phone. Said he would contact me to make appointment. Waited over a month. He finally did contact me and made an appointment. Day of the appointment he was several hours late, but he did finally show up. He did the repair. Price seemed fair. A month later I contacted him for another, probably unrelated problem. He got defensive, told me to look at the invoice for the previous repair and note that warranty repairs were to be performed at his location. I never mentioned warranty or free service, but he kept harping on it. Said most call-backs were because of bad fuel. I told him the fuel was new, and I didn't expect free service. He finally agreed to set up an appointment in a week. Day of that appointment, I took time off work, and again he didn't show during the appointed time. I texted him see if he was coming. I received a phone call back, and he proceeded to chew me out for texting him! Said he is a 55 year old man and doesn't text. I tried to point out that in our original contact, I had phoned him and he had texted me back. He got more irate. I finally told him he was completely unreliable and I was never going to do business with him again, and he hung up. I think he is unbalanced. Never call this guy, even though he can fix things.
- RICHARD M.
A

Rating
I used
Wilmington Lawn Mower Repair Shops Provider Name Locked
for the first time this weekend and was absolutely thrilled. My 17 year old Honda single stage snow blower was not starting. Admittedly, I had not had it serviced EVER. I called Ed [the owner's name] on a Friday afternoon, and he was able to come out the next day at 9 am, and he arrived punctually. I was a little put off by the old VW vehicle he drove up in but any reservation went away when he started working on the machine. He had it running in a few minutes and then started to look at other performance of the machine, lubricating parts as needed. He changed the oil and spark plug. He also found the scraper bar on the bottom of the blower was also in need of replacing. This proved to be a arduous task for Ed. I was surprised when he actually had the parts and appropriate tools with him, but then had to cut the bolts off because they were rusted. When he put the new scraper in place, he also put some "goop" on the bolts to insure this might not happen again. All in all, he not only did what I had asked but really did a bang up job of getting this older machine working in good order and he also giving me tips for treating the gasoline and how to properly store the machine during the summer. His price seemed reasonable especially since I did not have bring the blower to him. TERRIFIC.
- Ray M.
A

Rating
I got the machine back the following week. Price was more than reasonable, and snowblower has worked better than it ever has before. I am really pleased with their quality and service. I will be sending my lawn tractor to them for repair in the spring..Great people to do business with!
- Chris L.
A

Rating
Wilmington Lawn Mower Repair Shops Provider Name Locked
came to our home, quickly (and accurately) assessed the problem with the snow blower (a broken belt), made us aware that he unfortunately didn't have it in stock with him but would take the snow blower back with him, fix it, replace a missing
Wilmington Lawn Mower Repair Shops Provider Name Locked
pin and give the machine a oil/filter change. He did all of this in well under a week's time and dropped the snow blower back off to our home at a time convenient for us. I was not able to be home but reading the reviews about his honesty and trustworthiness made me feel comofrtable that my wife could handle the situation. She said
Wilmington Lawn Mower Repair Shops Provider Name Locked
was as nice as could be and very professional.
- Sean D.
C

Rating
This group was pricey and did not respond very quickly in their work. The amount of time that you have to spend to get customer service is far too long. Their processes are very disconbobulated.


- Joel P.
F

Rating
When I picked up the snow blower it was not fixed, more damaged than when I dropped it off. He has a hot temper. He doesn't put a physical address, he just shows his map. He has all of the snow blowers out and pictures in his ad on craigslist. He even used my snow in his ad. I would definitely would not recommend him for anything. He didn't do anything that he claimed he would do.
- Bill K.
A

Rating
Fantastic! Turns out, I left the fuel shut off valve closed. He saved me on this snowy day! I will definitely turn to him to provide yearly service as he was exceptionally professional and kind!
- Susan L.

All Lawn Mower Repair Shops in Wilmington, MA

Companies below are listed in alphabetical order. To view top rated service providers along with reviews and ratings, Join Angie's List Now!

A Cut Above

Wakefield

American Tools & Sharping Service

132 S Broadway
Lawrence

Anthony Vanaria & Sons Inc

PO Box 541113
Waltham

Antimone Landscaping

25 Palmer Ave
Saugus

ARROW SMALL ENGINE REPAIR

1 INNIS DR
Billerica

BATTERIES PLUS

173A CAMBRIDGE RD
Woburn

C & J EQUIPMENT INC

188 MAIN ST
Wilmington

Cason's Equipment

133 Congress Street
Lowell

Colameta Landscaping - Groton

45 Pleasant Street
Groton

Handyman Kia

327 Lowellave
Newtonville

Hingham Cycle

191 Beal St
Hingham

HUDSON SMALL ENGINE

156 Lowell Rd Ste 1

Imperial Services Inc

77 Alexander Rd
Billerica

Julians Landscaping

303 Pleasant St
Framingham

Kadet, Dr. Hessa

11 Nevins St
Brighton

kens home services

10 davis st.
Tyngsboro

Lew's Emall Engines

153 Uxbridge rd
Mendon

Little Mower Shop

120 Whittier Rd
Haverhill

Mal's Tree & Landscape

675 Veterans of Foreign Wars Pkwy
West Roxbury

Midurski Bros. Landscaping Inc.

118 Cushing Street
Stoughton

MTE Turf & Tractor

33 THRUWAY PARK DR

Schofield Power Equipment

12 Summer St
Leominster

Sears Stores Natick

1235 Worcester Rd Spleen St
Natick

Steve's Lawn Care, Inc.

PO BOX 233
Arlington

Superior Auto Repair

29 Groton Rd
Westford

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