You recently acquired a new mower blade or sharpened your current one, reinstalled it on your lawn mower, and rolled it out onto your lawn while grinning smugly, anticipating the flawless cut you’re about to see (poetry in motion…). Your mower cuts worse than before when you turn her on, though. However, you remark, “The blade is sharper than ever.”
It’s highly likely that you installed your blade the wrong way around if you’re going through this situation now or in the past. In case you didn’t already know, it’s crucial to understand which side of the lawn mower blade is up.
3 Ways To Tell Which Side Of The Lawn Mower Blade Is Up
Whether you are using self propelled or push mower lawn mower there are a few tricks for determining which side of your lawn mower blade is up. Normally, it isn’t too difficult, but I’ll go over a few options because it isn’t always the same for different lawn mower blades.
- Find the cutting edge of Blade
- Find the Blade’s Cutting Edge
- Conduct the “Wobble Test
1. Find The Cutting Edge Of Blade
Recognizing the instrument’s cutting edge is the most reliable and effective way to tell if your mower blade is up. This edge will be noticeably sharper than the duller side. As it will be chopping the grass, the cutting edge should be facing it.
Always use caution when handling a mower blade. Before performing at-home mower maintenance, unplug any connected wires and remove spark plugs to avoid a cut finger or other injury. Mowers can be replaced, but fingers (and, in the worst-case scenario, lives) cannot.
Not all cutting edges are interchangeable. Do not use them in a lawnmower unless the center hole and length of the instrument are of the same dimensions as the original one(s). Using the incorrect blade on a mower can cause many new problems. The edges of the mower blade frequently wear out over time, becoming dull and reducing cutting capability. Keep your blades sharpened to avoid a choppy lawn.
2. Conduct The Wobble Test
After the blades have been adjusted or replaced, the final step is to put them through the wobble test to ensure they are secure in the mower. This simple stress test will tell you whether your blade is likely to fall out while you mow and whether it will mow effectively. To be more specific, if there is a wobble, it means there is a problem. The following are the steps to take when performing a wobble test:
- Hold the mower blade in one hand and the deck (the part that acts as a shield, protecting you from the open blade) in the other.
- Give the blade a gentle tug and pull it down.
- If the blade is on the right side, with the sharp edge facing the ground, it should not wobble. If it wobbles, make sure it’s on the blade shaft. If you tighten the securing bolt with a wrench it will assist you in accomplishing this.
Once the wobble test is completed, your lawnmower blade will be secure and ready to use. Put your mower back on its wheels, and you’re done.
3. Locate The Sit-Down Or Cut Grass Stamp
Despite popular belief, lawnmower blades are not interchangeable and cannot be flipped. The majority of lawn mower blades will have a sticker or stamp indicating which side the tool should be pointed at. Some models might have words engraved or machine-printed on the blade; rust may cover these seals over time.
If your mower blade lacks a sticker, you can purchase or make your own to help you remember which side should be facing up. If you do this, be careful where you put the sticker, so it doesn’t interfere with any other parts.
How To know If The Mower Blade Is Upside Down?
If you’re observant, you’ll notice that your lawn mower blade is turned upside down. It’s all in the editing, you see. As I mentioned earlier, you should sharpen your existing blade or replace it with a new one to achieve a better cut.
However, if you install this blade the wrong way around, the quality of the cut your mower provides will be significantly reduced. That makes sense because it is now cutting the grass with the blunt edge (well, more like a hack). Consider chopping your vegetables with the blunt edge of your knife tonight as you prepare dinner. I’d bet it’s a shambles! The same can be said for a lawn mower blade that is turned upside down.
So, if you notice your grass being hacked to pieces rather than a crisp cut, it’s because your blade is oriented incorrectly. And this is something you should correct right away!
What Happens If You Put The Lawn Mower Blade Upside Down?
In theory, if you turned your mower blades upside down, they would not cut the grass. If the blades are installed upside down, the sharp edge will face the lawn mower deck rather than the grass.
This error can also cause damage to your lawn mower. It is a potentially hazardous and costly error. Refer to our previous answer to determine which side of your blade is up before beginning the installation process.
1. Grass Will Suffer
I won’t go on because I’ve already mentioned it, but cutting with the wrong side of the blade is like hacking your grass rather than cutting it. Tearing it in this way weakens it and makes it far more vulnerable to lawn diseases and pests.
2. Best Mower Blade
Do you recall the “wings” we previously discussed? In particular, if you frequently mow your lawn short and have the deck closer to the ground, the likelihood of hitting a stone, rock, or stump increases when the blade is pointed toward the ground. These impacts have the potential to bend your blade or worse, throw it off balance. A blade that is bent is useless. You’ll need to swap it out.
I hope I’ve emphasized enough how important it is to pay close attention to which way the lawn mower blade goes on. It’s a simple mistake, but it can be costly for you and your lawn. Look for a sticker indicating which side is up and which is down. The cutting edge should be facing the grass, while the dull edge should be facing the mower deck. And it doesn’t have to be that way when there are a few simple tricks to ensuring you have the proper lawn mower blade position.