Self-propelled lawnmowers are walk-behind mowers that feature a drive mechanism that turns the front wheels to propel the mower forward. Self-propelled mowers are good for mowing larger lawns and for homeowners who cannot push a mower for an extended period of time. Proper preparation is essential, before use, as is an understanding of the basic operation of the mower.
Position the self-propelled mower on a flat surface, such as a driveway or sidewalk. Adjust the cutting height of the mower with the levers located between each wheel and the mower deck. Use a ruler or tape measure to determine the height of the blade and adjust it for the lawn you're mowing.
Remove the plug or dipstick from the oil fill tube. Check the oil level visually in the tube or by the markings on the dipstick. Add oil, if necessary, to bring it to the proper level then replace the cap or dipstick.
Add unleaded gasoline to the engine. Fill the gas tank with enough gasoline to cut the entire yard, if possible, to avoid having to refill the tank.
Follow the manufacturer's recommendations for starting the mower based on the specific brand and model. As a rule of thumb, move the mower to the grassy area to be cut. Press the primer bulb to clear air from the fuel line and carburetor. Pull up on the operator control bar and pull on the starter cord to start the mower's engine.
Engage the drive mechanism on the mower by pushing or pulling the drive lever or raising the drive control bar against the handle of the mower.
Guide the mower left and right as it propels itself across the yard. Maintain straight lines, as much as possible, to cut the lawn efficiently without missing any areas.