Spring is a few weeks away, and while many are looking forward to flowers and warmer temperatures, some are starting to sweat the `small' stuff, including getting their small engine equipment or machines out of storage and up and running. Most Americans will soon bid farewell to their snow blowers and anxiously dig out items that signal the start to a warmer season, including boats, sports cars, ATVs and lawn mowers.
However, according to the 2012 Spring Engine Survey conducted by Gold Eagler Co., nearly 70 percent of Americans dread the process of getting their equipment ready for use, so much so, that they would rather take down holiday decorations or clean their entire house instead. And, more than a third of respondents loathe the seasonal preparation process enough that they are willing to pay more than $100 on average to have someone do the dirty work for them.
"Springtime preparation of small engine equipment can be challenging, time consuming and expensive if not done properly," said Tom Bingham, director of marketing at Gold Eagle. "It's important to thoroughly inspect, clean and properly lubricate your equipment before flipping the ON switch or you could find yourself standing in line at a repair shop."
When it comes to seasonal preparation, more than a quarter of Americans with small engine equipment assume that no matter what they do they will have issues with their machines each season. Unfortunately, their concern is warranted as almost 75 percent of respondents have had an equipment malfunction when using their machinery for the first time each spring. The most common issue small engine equipment owners have experienced relates to the most important part of the machinery-the engine. Issues with the engine are not only frustrating, but expensive. Four out of five respondents who experienced mechanical issues found themselves paying just under $300 on average to fix the problem.
"When it comes to proper seasonal storage and maintenance, it literally pays to take care of your machinery between seasons and makes for an easy, stress-free transition," said Bingham.
How You Can Avoid Dealing with Disaster
1. Properly educate yourself on the steps you should take to store your small engine equipment or machines in the fall.
2. When taking your equipment out of storage in the spring, make sure you check that all fasteners are tightened and cutting blades are sharp and you have ample oil in 4-cycle engines. It's also important to lubricate any wheel bearings, grease fittings, etc. and ensure your fuel in the tank is still fresh.
3. If you have trouble starting your engine, add the appropriate fluids, such as Start Your Engines! to help your engine start easier.
4. If you think something is wrong and you aren't sure how to fix it, save yourself the hassle and ask an expert!