Fall is a busy time of year for power equipment. Mowers, weed trimmers, leaf blowers, chainsaws and other small-engine machinery are in heavy service, sometimes right up until the first snowflakes fly. But when the grass stops growing and every last leaf has fallen, yard equipment needs to be made ready for winter storage — a period of unuse that lasts months.

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It’s easy to stow away yard equipment and forget about it until spring, but that’s a big mistake if you want to avoid the frustration of hard starting or poor running engines later. Taking a little time now to properly prepare your power equipment for storage will ensure it operates as it should when you need it again, saving you time and money next year.

Clean Your Machine

At the end of a long season of regular use, yard equipment is often filthy with grass clippings, leaves, wood chips and dirt. Debris can get lodged in even the smallest of openings, including those impacting performance, such as your air cleaner or carburetor. Give your equipment a thorough cleaning — make sure every external part is free of debris.

Service Parts and Change Fluids

Is your air filter dirty? Make sure it’s cleaned or replaced. Check your spark plug and clean or replace that as well, if needed. Also drain and replace the oil. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations in your equipment’s service manual.

Replace Fuel

Improper fuel storage is the top reason for power equipment that won’t start, starts hard, or runs poorly. Fuel degrades, destabilizes and evaporates over time, leading to the buildup of gum and varnish in fuel lines and carburetors and corrosion in steel fuel tanks. It’s important to drain old fuel entirely, including from your carburetor’s float bowl. Then top off your equipment with fresh gas and fuel treatment to stabilize it during storage. For two-stroke engines, be sure to fill with properly mixed gas.


Treating stored fuel helps it resist evaporation, preserve ignition vapors and prevent the buildup of harmful deposits. To stabilize fuel in your power equipment, add 1 ounce of Sea Foam Motor Treatment per gallon of fuel. Then run the engine for a few minutes, so the treated fuel can work its way through the fuel system.

SEA FOAM MOTOR TREATMENT will stabilize your stored fuel, keeping your equipment dependable after months of storage. 

Adding Sea Foam Motor Treatment to fresh fuel is the best way to prevent common seasonal power equipment problems. It will help your engines start easier, run stronger and last longer.