Every year you will have experienced the changing climate across the UK and you will have adapted your garden growing and maintenance to cope with the warmer and colder months of the year. To ensure that all of your tools are ready for action the next time you need them, looking after them correctly will help ensure that they work well, first time, just when you need them.
When the weather gets colder, you’ll turn the heating on in your home and you will wear more clothes when you’re working outside in your garden. By the time the heat of the summer arrives you will be opening the windows in your property and working in your garden in a T-shirt and shorts. These extreme changes in weather and the way you adapt to them is easy for you to remember, so why do many people completely forget about their power tools and their electric or petrol lawnmower, which stay in your garden shed without any care or protection as the weather changes?
1. Storing your garden tools
Without concern and consideration to your power tools, they will suffer from damp or other damage if you don’t judge the season of the year and the temperature of your garden shed. By planning ahead you will ensure that your tools remain clean, are properly protected and ready for use whatever the weather is like outside.
During the colder months there will be periods of time when the weather does turn warm enough to cause damp and condensation to build up within your garden shed, particularly if it is well sealed and like many garden sheds, won’t be opened between November and February, which means that you may not see any deterioration in any of your equipment during that time.
By ensuring that there is a good flow of air through your garden shed, you will prevent the majority of condensation building up inside your building. Any water or damp that sits on your metal tools and particularly on anything electrical, may begin to rust or cause permanent damage to the electrics if they are not cared for. Where your garden shed is subject to a variety of temperatures and potential damp, either increasing the ventilation to allow air to pass through or moving your tools indoors will mean they are available for work when the weather changes.
2. Don’t use your tools direct from frozen
You may damage your power tools by using them immediately after removing them from your garden shed. If the temperature of your tool is too cold when it taken from your garden shed, when it is freezing outside, the extreme temperature change that will occur to the metal and electrics in your tools may be too much for them to cope with when you turn them on.
Most motors include grease or oil for lubrication and when you start up the power tools too quickly, the lubrication may not be working properly or not at all if they are frozen and your power tool may lock or freeze permanently.
3. Into the petrol from your lawnmower
After the last mow of the autumn season, like most people, you may be storing your mower in your garden shed and won’t expect to see it again until late March or April of the following year.
It is best if you run it until it runs out of petrol at the end of your last mowing session because this will prevent moisture building up inside the petrol tank which will turn the petrol stale over the winter. When you try and operate your lawnmower again, it may be difficult or impossible to start and only fresh petrol will help revive your new mowing season.
These three simple tips will help keep your power tools and lawnmower in tiptop condition so that they are maintained properly and ready for their next use.
Jen Byiers knows how to get the best from garden tools and equipment. She is part of the family garden landscaping firm Gardens Galore.