How to Check Lawnmower Oil With a Hot or Cold Engine

Just like your car, it is necessary to check the oil periodically in your lawnmower. Unlike your car, your lawnmower burns oil more quickly. This is especially true if you cut wet or tall grass. Checking the oil regularly helps keep the lawnmower running efficiently and keeps the internal parts lubricated properly. Manufacturers recommend checking the lawnmower oil with a cold engine. However, the actual process of checking lawnmower oil with a hot or cold engine is generally the same. The difference is giving a hot engine time for the oil to drain into the crankcase.

Lawnmowers With Dipsticks

Step 1

Move the lawnmower to a level area. If the lawnmower has been running, allow the mower to sit for 10 minutes once you shut it off. This gives the oil time to drain into the crankcase.

Step 2

Wipe the area around the fill tube cap with a clean rag. This prevents dirt and grime from getting inside the crankcase when you remove the fill tube cap.

Step 3

Turn the fill tube cap counterclockwise and remove it from the fill tube. The dipstick attaches to the bottom of the cap. Wipe the dipstick clean with a clean rag.

Step 4

Insert the dipstick back into the fill tube, and turn the cap clockwise. Turn the cap counterclockwise and remove it with the dipstick from the fill tube. Check the oil level on the dipstick. The level should be near the upper hole or fill line on the dipstick.

Step 5

Add oil if necessary, and recheck the level. Wipe the dipstick clean each time you check the oil. Once the level is correct, insert the dipstick back into the fill tube and turn the cap clockwise.

Lawnmowers Without a Dipstick

Step 1

Wipe the area around the oil fill opening cap with a clean rag.

Step 2

Insert the shaft of a screwdriver between the two button tabs on the fill cap. Turn the cap counterclockwise with the screwdriver and remove it from the fill opening.

Step 3

Check the oil level inside the fill hole. There is a slot on the inside of the fill hole. The oil level should be near or at the top of the slot.

Step 4

Add oil as necessary until the level is at the top of the slot. Place the fill cap back over the fill opening and turn it clockwise with your fingers until it is tight.