Is it sensical to wait until wet grass dries before mowing it? Many homeowners have asked themselves that very question, especially after a very gentle rain or after they have woken up only to find heavy dew in their yard.
We have all been in this situation whereby overgrown grass needs to be cut but the summer showers keep raining. A great debate on whether mowing on wet grass is a good idea or not has been resolved. Generally, it’s not a good idea to cut your grass while it’s still wet. Although you can mow wet grass when it is necessary, there are some valid reasons why mowing wet grass isn’t ideal.
Why It’s Not A Good Idea
It’s not safe: Whether at home or at work, safety comes first. That’s why prevention is far much better than cure; the same in our case. When using a lawn mower on wet grass, you stand a high risk of getting involved in a slip and fall accident. This may lead to broken bones and other injuries that can be avoided by simply waiting for the grass to dry.
Clogging and clumping: Mowing wet grass is one of the reasons why lawn mowers malfunction. There are several reasons: First, cutting wet grass dulls the blades more quickly. This is because clumps of cut blades accumulate under the lawn mower decks.
Second, those wet chippings may clog up the mower. As a result, the mower will need to be cleaned out every time after it has been used and this may be dangerous.
It consumes more fuel: When using a lawn mower to cut wet grass, the mower uses more to cut the grass. This is because the grass demands more power.
It leads to lawn damage: Mowing wet grass can also increase the chances of your lawn getting damaged. First, the wheels will leave imprints on the ground, which makes your lawn look ugly when it dries up. Second, wet grass easily gets scrapped and uprooted, leaving ugly patches on the yard.
The fungal disease may also develop on the lawn: When you mow a lawn that’s wet, you are probably opening up fungus and moisture which provides a safe haven for fungus. These falling chippings also restrict a healthy airflow on the lawn.
Also, wet grass chippings can stick to the underside of the mower deck and if allowed, they may invite mold which can later on spread on your turf.
Mowing a wet lawn causes you extra work: It takes more time and effort to mow a wet lawn. Wet grass is slippery, which prompts you to go over a single area a couple of times. This consumes a lot of time and also highers the risks of slipping and falling. It may also end up making the lawn look uneven and unlevelled.
Wheel Ruts: Mowing wet grass can create wheel ruts in your lawn since soil becomes soggy when it gets oversaturated with rain or water. Consequently, it can create unsightly wheel ruts in your lawn and you risk damaging the grass.
Tips On Mowing Wet Grass
While it is preferred to mow in dry conditions, sometimes mowing a wet lawn is unavoidable. In case you need to cut wet grass you have to make slight adjustments to your mowing routine. This can be made possible through the following measures:
Sharpen your mower blades: When the blades are sharp enough, it takes the mower little effort to cut the grass. This saves you from the hassle of maneuvering the mower back and forth, which could higher the risk of sliding.
Raise your mower deck to cut between 3-4 inches: When the blades are set low, there is a tendency of grass clippings clogging the mower’s deck. This obstructs movement, making the mower hard to maneuver and, in turn, hiring the risks of possible hazards. You can avoid this by keeping the mowers deck at the highest setting.
Mow slowly: Mowing a wet lawn should be done at a slow pace since moving at a fast speed highers the risk of sliding.
Also, mowing in slow motion prevents overwhelming of the lawn mower engine. When the engine is overwhelmed, movement and maneuvering become hard, again increasing the chances of hazards.
Clean the mower immediately after use: After mowing the wet lawn, it’s healthy to keenly clean all the grass clumps that are underneath the lawnmower and on the blades. If left unattended these grass clippings will accumulate under the deck of the mower and this will cause rusting as well as damaging your valuable machine. Clean mowers tires with a wire brush, wipe down the top of the mower to remove wet clippings, and fill its gas tank to remove air. It’s also advisable to always keep clean spark plugs and air filters on hand, this way you can easily replace them if they become dump or dirty from the grass clippings.
Mow more frequently: Another measure is to mow your lawn frequently. This is because cutting wet grass is more difficult if it is long and overgrown. If you are managing a lawn in the midst of a wet season, it’s recommended that you mow in shorter intervals than usual.
Never mow your lawn when it’s raining: The reason is obvious, it is ten times riskier. Mowing a lawn has never been urgent, so wait for that drizzle to go away. It’s far better to battle with the wet grass alone than dealing with it alongside what’s causing the wetness.
Also, mowing when it’s raining exposes the machine to humidity, which might end up destroying the engine.
Lubricate under the deck of the lawnmower: Lubrication using silicone spray will help in preventing grass chippings from sticking under the deck of the lawnmower. Oiling and greasing immediately after use makes it easier when using the lawn mower the next time as well as increasing the lifespan of the lawn mower.
Wear the right gear: If after all, you are going to mow wet, dress appropriately for the task. Most of the people who slip and fall on wet grass, try to take on the task with slippers or some slippery sandals. Don’t do that, it’s dangerous. Get some cleats or a pair of gumboots that will offer excellent traction.
Get the right mower for the task: Not all mowers are designed for wet grass. And if the task is going to be smooth and risk-free, you’ve got to find the best fit. Here you can find some mowers that are particularly good for mowing wet grass.
It is recommended that you wait for the grass to dry before mowing it. This is because it is safer for you and your machine. However, if you can’t wait for the wetness to go away, follow the precautions to keep yourself safe. Having the knowledge of mowing a wet lawn is vital and is an added advantage.