DIY JD Maintenance Kit

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Job

Get the mower ready for the 2015 season. Change the oil, the spark plug, the belt, the air filter and teh gas filter.

Safety

Avoid spills of your oil and gas on things that don’t respond well to oil or gas; i.e., your lawn.

Tools

  • wrench set or adjustable wrench
  • a funnel
  • an oil bucket
  • some dirty rags
  • vice grips
  • needle nose pliers
  • a gas bucket

Materials

  • JD Maintenance Kit

Plan

  1. Start with the easy stuff: air filter and spark plug. They’re easy because they’re not messy. Just pop out the air filter (see video), and take the small foam filter out as well (there’s two air filters in there) and replace with the new ones.
  2. For the spark plug, pull off the cap, pull out your wrenches and loosen gently. Replace the plug by doing what you did to take it out in reverse to put the new one in. Be careful when seating the spark plug so as to not cross thread. If it came out easy, it should go in easy. Be gentle with it.
  3. The oil is a little messy. Loosen the oil cap first so that there isn’t any air pressure. Place your bucket under the drain plug. Then carefully, take the drain plug off. My drain plug squirted oil everywhere. I didn’t enjoy that.
  4. Drain the oil; replace the drain plug; take out your dipstick; set down your funnel and pour in the new oil.
  5. Don’t be this guy. Just because they gave you two quarts does not mean you need two quarts. Use the dip stick. Dip it. Check the oil after a few mows. You can crack the second quart and top up at that point.
  6. I don’t recommend changing the gas filter, but if you have some neurological problem like me where you have to use everything that comes in a box lest there be waste; crimp your gas line off with the vice grips, make sure your tank is almost empty and do not work around an open flame because you’re going to have a gas fight.
  7. Have a gas bucket handy. You’ll need something the size of a margarine container (something bigger if you didn’t crimp the gas line). Using the needle nose pliers, undo the clip at the top of the gas filter first.
  8. Place the new gas filter on the freed line and get that clip back in place.
  9. Now the messy part. If you didn’t crimp your gas line, get ready to get soggy; uncrimp the lower clip and pull the line off the old gas filter. Slide that clip down the line.
  10. As fast as you can, get the new gas filter onto the old line, then battle getting that lower clip in place. Then wonder why you even did this when I said don’t worry about it 4 steps ago. Why are you doing this to yourself? You’re covered in gas. There has to be a better way of doing it.
  11. You’re done. Start your mower; cut some grass.

 

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