This article will provide you a step-by-step guideline on how to drain gas from a lawn mower, with and without a siphon.
If you want your lawn mower to last longer and give the best performance, take out some time to drain the old gas before restarting it after a close season. Letting the gas sit in the lawn mower for long periods can cause endless issues. The deposits will sink to the bottom which will lead to reduced fuel quality resulting in poor performance of the lawn mower. The gas may get stale, jam the carburetor, and may lead to rust
How often should you drain gas from a lawn mower?
It is suggested to drain gas from your lawn mower if you have not used it in the past 3 or more months. Draining gas before starting a lawn mower after a close season helps in improved performance.
Before you start draining the mower, make sure that it would not move or accidentally ignite by taking these measures:
- Put the lawnmower on a smooth, leveled surface for example your driveway, and engage the parking brake.
- Turn off the mower and let the engine cool down.
- Take out the ignition key.
What do you need for draining?
The common and efficient way of draining gasoline is by using a siphon. However, if you do not have a siphon pump, all you need is an empty jerry can, a long plastic hose (2.5 cm diameter), and a short hose.
How to drain gasoline from lawn mowers without a siphon pump?
Some lawn mowers have anti-siphon batteries which make it impossible to use siphon for draining the gas. For such models, follow these steps to safely drain the gas:
Place the jerry can under the tank. Make sure that the receiving container is placed lower than the gas tank.
Simply unscrew the gas cap and remove it.
Insert the long hose into the tank to the point where it is substantially submerged into the gas. You can test the position of the hose by blowing air into it. If you hear bubbles, the hose is in the right place.
Place the other end of the long hose into the jerry can. Make sure that the hose is long enough to fit into the jerry can. It would prevent any spilling of the liquid.
Insert the shorter plastic hose into the gas tank. This hose should not be submerged into the gas and should rather remain over the liquid.
Seal the opening of the gas tank to prevent the escape of the air. To do this, use an old rag to cover the opening. If you still feel any air escaping through the opening, wet the rag. As this method depends on the pressure of air buildup in the tank, it is important that the opening is sealed properly.
The setup is all done. Now just blow air into the short hose which will increase pressure in the tank. This increased pressure will raise the level of the gas and it will start to flow into the larger hose. Keep blowing air into the shorter hose until you see gas flowing through the longer hose into the jerry can. While blowing, be cautious not to inhale the fumes.
Once the gas has started flowing, you can stop blowing. If you need to halt the draining process, just increase the level of the jerry can.
How to drain gas from a lawn mower with a siphon?
Place the lawn mower on a smooth surface and unscrew the gas tank.
Place an empty container at a lower level than the gas tank.
Insert the tube of the siphon pump into the gas container. The tube should be submerged into the liquid.
Take the other end of the tube of the pump and place it into the receiving container. Make sure that the tube is somewhere in the middle of the container. If it is close to the bottom, it may interfere with the draining process. If the tube is right on the top, it can lead to the spilling of the liquid, creating a mess.
Now to initiate the flow of the gas, pump the handle of the siphon a couple of times.
For some brands, you only have to pump a couple of times and once the flow has been initiated, the gravity works to continue the process. However, for some brands, you may have to keep pumping until all the liquid has been transferred from the gas tank into the receiving container.
If you are still confused about the process. Watch this guy demonstrate the siphoning of lawn mower.
Traditional Mouth Siphoning (CAUTION-NOT ADVISED)
Gasoline contains a large number of chemicals that can be injurious to health. Especially when inhaled through the mouth, it can even result in life-threatening diseases. When siphoning via the mouth, be super cautious of gasoline entering into your mouth.
Get a clean and clear tube of about 2.5 centimeters in diameter. It is crucial that you use a clear transparent tube so that you can see the flow of the gas inside the tube and remove it from your mouth when it comes closer.
Get an empty container and place it near the gas tank.
Now place the tube inside the tank to the point where it is submerged into the liquid. Blow air to see if bubbles are formed. If you hear bubbles, the tube is at the right place.
This step is crucial to this method. Once the tube is set, create a suction in the tube with your mouth which will draw the liquid out of the tank. Be careful not to inhale any vapors or fumes. Inhale through your nose while performing this step. Keep your hand on the tube near your mouth and your eyes on the flow of the liquid.
Once the gas is about 6 inches from your mouth, crimp the tube tightly. Release the crimp when you have placed the tube into the empty container. Gravity will take care of the rest.
Remove the tube once all gas has been drained out of the gas tank.
Frequently Asked Questions
How often should I drain gas from my lawnmower?
To keep your lawnmower in the best shape, prefer to siphon it before storage if you know you are not going to use it for a long time (3 months or more). If you did not siphon it before storage, NEVER use it without siphoning.
What should be the length of the hose to siphon gas?
The length of the hose depends on the size of the receiving container and your gas tank. However, the diameter should be somewhat about 1 inch (2.5 cm).
One may think that you can leave the engine running until all gas is burnt. Yes, it is an easier method but the harm it will cause to your lawn mower would be a lot more expensive.
If you want your machinery to last longer, small things like siphoning count are very significant.
We have tried to explain the procedures in the simplest way possible. However, every unit is different from the other so read the user manual of your lawn mower before you take any action.
You may want to read about the lawn mower injuries that may have serious consequences.