It’s important to be able to keep your lawn looking as tidy and presentable as possible. If you’re lucky enough to have a really large yard, you might even need a riding mower to be able to get the job done.
Those who recently moved onto large properties might still be getting used to using riding mowers. They’re truly great to own, but it’s imperative to know how to take care of them properly.
You might be wondering about mower battery issues. If the battery doesn’t seem to be working, what could be wrong?
Does a lawn mower battery charge itself? How do the batteries work?
Read on to learn more about mowers and their batteries. You’ll also get some tips about fixing issues with them when they won’t hold a charge.
Why Does a Riding Mower Need a Charger System?
You might be wondering why a riding mower needs a charging system in the first place. After all, push mowers don’t typically utilize batteries.
When looking at riding mowers, you need to separate them from standard push mowers in your mind. Although they’re used to accomplish similar tasks, riding mowers are in a different class altogether.
The components used to make a riding mower are more complex than those found in a push mower. There are many parts that you simply won’t find in a typical push mower.
These parts require the use of a battery to run. If a riding mower didn’t have one, it wouldn’t be able to function properly.
This means that the battery is a crucial part of the riding mower, and if a battery didn’t have a proper charging system, it’d wind up going dead really fast.
Charging systems make it so that you can go use the riding mower when you need to. Otherwise, you’d have to plug the battery into a charger each time you intended to use it.
You might also be able to jumpstart the battery each time, but that wouldn’t be convenient. Charger systems are a normal part of riding mowers that allows them to do what they need to do.
Tractors Use One of Two Battery Charging Systems
Riding mowers will typically use one of two battery charging systems. The most common system that you’ll see involves the use of an alternator.
Essentially, a riding mower is going to work very much like a car. The alternator is belt-driven, and it’ll often be found mounted directly to the tractor’s engine.
The belt on the alternator turns and this action generates power. It keeps the battery charged so that you’ll be able to go out there and mow your lawn when you need to.
Another system that is used in some tractors is the stator system. This involves the use of a round, metal body that has a central hole with prongs around it that are wrapped in coil wires.
The metal body in question is positioned underneath a flywheel. It’s simply a different method to generate power that winds up accomplishing the same thing as a standard belt-driven alternator design.
Depending on what type of tractor you own, you might be dealing with one design or the other. It’s possible that something could go bad no matter what system you’re using.
Having Issues with Mower Charger Systems
There could be a situation when you will have issues with your mower charger system. Sometimes components can fail, and this will cause you to have to make repairs or replace certain things.
There are a large number of different things that can go wrong with an alternator or a stator. Sometimes it isn’t easy to tell what’s wrong until you troubleshoot and examine everything closely.
For instance, your charger system could stop working if certain wires are worn out. Alternators can also stop functioning as intended when belts get worn out or come loose.
You could have a regulator stop functioning as it should. It’s possible that the charger system will stop working because of something minor that can be easily fixed.
It’s also possible that there could be something more complicated to deal with. You might need to outright replace the stator or alternator depending on what’s wrong.
Before jumping to conclusions, it’s best to test the battery. You should charge it using a charger so that you can see if it’s working.
Using a multimeter will allow you to determine if the battery is working or not. If it isn’t, you might simply need to buy a new battery and install it in your riding mower.
In many ways, it’d be easier to replace a battery than it would to handle problems with an alternator or a stator. No matter what’s wrong, you’re going to be able to repair things so long as you get the right parts and understand how to do the job properly.
Those who aren’t comfortable making repairs will want to seek professional assistance. You can pay a local repair business to fix your riding mower for you so that you can get your lawn mowed again.
Storing a Mower Battery During the Winter
Depending on where you live, you might need to store your mower battery carefully during the winter. In areas that get really cold, it’s going to be rough to just leave your battery alone.
It’s unlikely that you’ll need to mow the lawn during the winter if it’s very cold. This means that the battery won’t have the benefit of being started every now and then.
Your car battery would die if you didn’t go out and use your car semi-regularly. The same thing can happen to a riding mower battery.
In many ways, it’s going to be more practical to store your riding mower battery during the winter months. There are a few different things that you can do to protect it so that it’ll stay working for as long as possible.
One idea is to hook it up to a battery charger. To do this safely, you’re going to need something that is known as a battery tender.
A battery tender will be hooked up to a battery and you can leave it on for months. It won’t risk overcharging the battery because of the way that it’s designed.
It’ll trickle power to the battery to keep it at the maximum charge without exceeding the limit. This is a handy way to keep your riding mower battery in good shape during the cold months of the year.
You could also choose to simply store the battery indoors. Some people go ahead and remove riding mower batteries so that they can keep them inside the house during the winter.
This ensures that the batteries won’t be exposed to the harsh temperatures in very cold parts of the world. Storing a battery in very cold conditions can negatively impact batteries, after all.
You’re going to lose some charge if you choose to do things this way. This means that you’ll need to charge the battery up again before installing it in the riding mower in the spring.
Going with one of these storage options will be a good idea. You can easily get a battery tender from a department store or an online retailer, and they aren’t exorbitantly priced either.
If you want your mower to be ready to go in the spring, it makes sense to pay attention to how you store it. The battery is a major component of your riding mower, so taking care of it just makes sense.
Riding mowers have batteries because they’re necessary. If a riding mower didn’t have one, many of its components would not be able to function.
A riding mower has a lot more going on than a standard push mower. If you’re used to using push mowers, learning how to care for a tractor might take a bit of getting used to.
These mower batteries charge using one of two systems. You’ll either have a belt-driven alternator or a stator system depending on what type of tractor you purchase.
Which method is being used doesn’t really matter that much. They’re both capable of charging the battery so that you can mow the lawn.
Things can go wrong with either system due to regular use and other complications. For example, you could have problems with your mower battery if cables come loose or damaged.
Sometimes alternators can wear down so much that they’ll need to be replaced. If your battery isn’t holding a charge, you could need to fix the charger system.
It’s also possible that the battery could go dead after a period of time has passed. Most mower batteries are designed to last for up to three years, but it isn’t unusual for a battery to die before that amount of time has passed.
Check the battery using a multimeter so that you can be sure what you’re dealing with. You can repair or replace the charging system if it becomes necessary to do so.
Ben has a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies, you can find him at home with wife and two daughters. Outside of family, He loves grilling and barbequing on his Big Green Egg and Blackstone Griddle, as well as working on projects around the house.
If you want more backyard tips including recipes, how-tos and more, make sure you subscribe to my youtube channel