What to do If You Have Too Much Oil in Lawn Mower – Effects and Protective Measures

Did you know that the recommended oil levels for use in all lawn mowers are always indicated in the user manual? If not, then you should definitely start going through it every time you get your hands on a new lawn mower.

It is very important to be aware of the amount oil that is recommended for your lawn mower. This is because you may actually neglect this bit and cause damage to your engine. Some people assume that putting any amount of oil in their lawn mower will still enable it to run efficiently. Well, this is only until the lawn mower starts to misbehave. Sometimes you can save your engine but if you aren’t careful you may not be too lucky.

However, you shouldn’t panic if you overfill oil in your lawn mower because we have a solution for you. There are three very effective ways that you can actually remove the excess oil in the engine of the lawn mower. The first and most recommended way to do this is by sucking out the excess oil by using a tube and suction bulb. This method also enables you to maintain the cleanliness of your garage while doing it. Aside from this method, you can also tilt the lawn mower to its side until the oil starts dripping from the oil port. You should ensure that the carburetor is facing upwards so that the oil doesn’t flood the combustion chamber. Another method that you can use is by loosening the oil plug using a wrench. However you should be careful not to drain too much oil.

How to determine you have put too much oil in your lawn mower

Have you ever noticed a black spot that looks like dried liquid on the floor of your garage? Well if you have, it may probably be an oil stain. When you put excessive oil in your lawn mower, it overfills the oil sump which may eventually start leaking from the sump.  This oil stain is a definite indicator that either you put excess oil or you probably have an oil leak that needs to be fixed as soon as possible. And this is not all, as cleaning an oil stain from the floor is really frustrating!

Another sign that shows you have put excess oil in your lawn mower is if you see oil on the exhaust of the lawn mower. You can confirm this by waiting for the lawn mower to cool down after use then touch the inside part of the tip of the exhaust, if you see oil on your finger then this is a sign. It is easy to differentiate an oil splatter from exhaust soot as soot is black and dry.

If you also notice that your lawn mower produces a lot of white smoke when you are using it to cut the grass on your lawn, it means you have excess oil in the engine. This is actually a hazard to both your health and the environment. So, if you note this please save yourself before your health is affected because we still need you alive! I need you alive. A hard start every single time you switch on your lawn mower is also an indicator that it has too much oil in it and the engine is not operating efficiently.

Effects of too much oil in a lawn mower

Sometimes it’s really difficult to understand how a lawn mower engine works but among the simplest concepts to understand is lubrication. When you put less amount of oil than the recommended amount, the internals are going to grind and this friction will cause overheating. You may probably think that putting too much oil will not be a problem, because at the end of the day your engine has oil, right? Unfortunately this is not the case. Excess oil will cause the engine to produce a lot more heat than it should so as to compensate the excess oil which will still lead to overheating. If you don’t sort out this issue sooner rather than later, it will cause serious damage to the engine of the lawn mower.

Excess oil will also make your lawn mower struggle to go on and will frequently turn on with a hard start. I remember there was once a time that I kept on ranting on how inefficient my lawn mower got because it would always start up like a 1967 tractor that’s still in use to date. However, I was wrong. If you are experiencing this with your lawn mower, you should definitely first check the oil levels in the lawn mower and see if you have put the recommended amount of oil in the engine of the lawn mower. This also causes damage to the engine internals of your lawn mower.

Too much oil will also cause the crankcase to stop functioning efficiently which will cause an imbalance in the air to fuel ratio in the pressurization chamber. This imbalance will make the engine to stop running efficiently and you may even notice the engine jerking at some point when you are using the lawn mower. All of this happens when the excessive oil overflows in the sump.

Another effect of too much oil in your lawn mower is oil leaks. You’ll agree with me that it is very dangerous when oil leaks from the engine of the lawn mower. This is because it is a highly flammable liquid, therefore if someone even lights up a cigarette close to it, your house will go boom! This is a really expensive risk and should be avoided at all cost. You should always ensure that the engine oil in your lawn mower is not leaking.

Protective measures to help you avoid putting too much oil in a lawn mower

To be honest, the easiest way to prevent yourself from overfilling the engine of your lawn mower is by checking in the user manual how much oil you should put during an oil change. Most brands come with user manuals that come with various instructions on how to properly maintain the lawn mower. However, if you are in a situation where the lawn mower doesn’t have a user manual, you should contact the manufacturers and request for specifications.

Another very effective way is by checking the oil levels on the dip stick. The dipstick has marks on it that show you the oil level in the engine. If you dip it in then remove it and you see the level is past “F” it means that you have overfilled oil in the engine. When the oil level is at “E” then it means you have put too little engine oil and you should add more. You should remember to do this when you have switched off the lawn mower and let it rest for a few minutes.

How to know there is an overfill

Effects of too much oil

Protective measures

Oil stains on the garage floor.

Engine overheating.

Checking the recommended oil level of your lawn mower in the user manual.

Oil on the exhaust tip.

Hard starts.

Checking the oil levels on the oil dipstick.

White smoke from the exhaust.

Inefficiency in the crankcase

Oil leaks.


It is clear as daylight that having too much oil in the engine of your lawn mower is not recommendable. This causes damage to the internals of the engine which is very costly to fix. Therefore, you should always be careful not to overfill the engine of your lawn mower with oil so as to enable it to provide you with long service life.


How often should I check the oil levels in my lawn mower?

You should check the oil levels in your lawn mower as frequently as possible so that you are always on the safe side.

Can I save the engine of the lawn mower even after using it with excess oil?

Yes you can, if you find out this problem early enough and sort it out before it causes damage to the engine.

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