What Kind of Oil should you use for a Toro Lawnmower?


If you’ve started using lawnmowers for your garden very recently, you may be learning how to carry out your basic maintenance. In terms of maintenance, oil change itself is one of the most significant activities of the engine. Realizing how and when to make an oil change might not be that challenging.  But it helps to know the appropriate grades of oil and those suitable enough to be used in small engines. If you’re looking online to find out what kind of oil makes your engine run efficiently, this blog post can assist.

What Kind of Oil should you use for a Toro Lawnmower:

  1. SAE-30 is the most widely used motor oil for a Toro lawnmower
  2. If a variable viscosity range is required for use at different temperatures, a multigrade SAE 10W-30 can help you as it improves the cold start.
  3. Like the synthetic form of SAE 10W-30 or the Vanguard 15W-30, synthetic oils are suitable for extended operations and other high-end engine requirements.
  4. If your region undergoes cold temperatures, the SAE 5W-30 can help your cold engine start.

Motor oil is necessary to lubricate mechanical parts of a lawnmower engine. These oils have two main types that serve the purpose of lubrication. That is Synthetic oils and crude oil derivatives.

This blog post will further help with a comprehensive insight into the types of oil for your Toro lawnmower and some helpful strategies for doing an oil change yourself.

Oil types for lawnmowers, a summary:

Motor oils used for engine lubrication come in different grades. Each grade varies from the other on the basis of its viscosity at different temperatures. In the engine crankcases, the engine oil is added separately.

● Recommended types of oil:

Below are some of the most commonly used types of oil for Toro lawnmowers. At a certain temperature, each type performs its lubrication in the best way.

– 1. SAE-30:

SAE-30 is by far the most widely used motor oil for small engine types such as lawnmowers, chainsaws, and snowblowers. SAE-30 implies a viscosity rating of 30 as provided by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). The oil classification varies from 0 to 50. Extremely viscous oils have a higher performance capability in warm environments. That’s why you should choose to use SAE-30 engine oil if you’re based in a warmer climate.

– 2. SAE 10W-30:

SAE 10W-30 is a multigrade oil. Multigrade means that it provides a variable range of viscosity. 10W means the oil has a viscosity level of 10 when the engine is cold (W means winter or cold start) and 30 when the engine is hot. The benefit of using SAE-30 is that it offers better efficiency when the weather is cold. However, using this grade of oil can increase your oil consumption.

If temperature differences are substantial in your area, you can choose to use a multigrade oil.

– 3. Synthetic 10W-30 SAE:

The synthetic version of the SAE 10W-30 results in much better engine performance. It operates at a variable temperature range, increases the cold weather’s start, and reduces your oil consumption. You should use this grade of oil if you want to improve your Toro engine’s service life.

– 4. 5W-30 SAE:

Compared to 10W-30, SAE 5W-30 has a cold temperature viscosity value of 5. This rating means that it is significantly beneficial for regions with a frigid climate. Since any fluid’s viscosity increases at low temperatures, it is best to use 5W-30 instead of 10W-30 if you happen to reside in regions where the temperature drops below 0 degrees.

– 5. Vanguard 15W-30:

Vanguard 15W-30 is a synthetic oil ideally suited for small engine applications like your Toro lawnmower. It has a relatively high viscosity of cold start-up. It is also ideal for use in regions where temperatures remain mild, such as coastal areas.

Since it is a synthetic grade, it is typically used for high-end engine applications such as commercial lawn mowing or pressure washing at the service station.

Note: When you buy the engine oil for your mower, please ensure that it states “For Service SF, SG, SH, SJ” or higher.

Oil capacity of lawnmowers:

While the exact details of your capacity are better elaborated in the owner’s manual, we’ve listed the volume of oil that your mower may require if you’re trying to make an oil change on your own.

● 1. Self-propelled mowers:

For walk-behind self-propelled lawnmowers, the oil capacity of the engine varies from 15 oz to 18 oz. For such engine models, a change in oil is recommended after 50 hours of use. As a basic guideline, you can have an oil change at the beginning of each mowing season to ensure smooth operation.

● 2. Riding lawnmower:

Riding lawnmowers’ oil capacity is higher than that of self-propelled mowers since they are built for longer and more intensive service. The oil capacity ranges from 48 oz to 64 oz. Please note that the engine should never be overfilled with oil. For this purpose, please always check your owner’s manual. After 100 hours of use, such lawnmowers must make an oil change.

Checking and adjusting the amount of oil:

You can come across circumstances where the change of oil in your lawnmower becomes inevitable. If you want to make an oil change yourself, the instructions below are as follows:

● Check the level of oil:

Checking the oil level of the engine is very convenient and can be done in a few steps.

-Step 1: Find and remove the dipstick:

The oil dipstick lets you check your level of oil. It’s usually present next to the engine, and it’s pretty easy to find. Rotate the dipstick head clockwise and detach gently. Clean any residue on the dipstick cap.

-Step 2: Check the level of oil on the dipstick:

The oil level is shown by a few indications at the bottom of the stick. If the oil level is between these indicators, it’s good, and you don’t need a change in oil.

● Perform an oil change:

Every once in a while, you would need to make a change in oil. It could be done by going through the mentioned steps:

-Step 1: Find and remove the oil dipstick:

You need to find and disconnect the oil dipstick on your engine to get started. If the oil color on the stick is black, the oil in your crankcase has become old, and it’s calling for an upgrade.

-Step 2: Disposal of the old oil:

The easiest way to remove the old oil from your engine is to use the oil extraction kit available from the oil retailer at a low cost. Place the oil extractor pipe into the oil hole and pump the oil from the engine into the extractor kit using the supplied piston.

– Step 3: Adding fresh oil:

After you have purchased the appropriate type of oil for your mower, insert it into the cap. It is safer to use a funnel to ensure that the oil enters easily without having any spills externally. Ensure that the oil level is checked consistently using the dipstick. Once the target amount has been achieved, close the dipstick and clean the worksite.

● Change of oil for two-stroke engines:

The method mentioned above refers to four-stroke engines. You can check the user manual that comes with your device to see whether the engine is two-stroke or four-stroke. While two-stroke engines are less popular due to pollution regulations, if your mower has one, you should know how to make the change.

Two-stroke engines blend oil and gasoline. So, the easiest way to change the oil is to drain the petrol. Then fill in the appropriate quantity of oil (as suggested by the manufacturer) in your tank. After that, get your gas tank full by going to a petrol station. After the gas has been added, give your can a nice shaking so that the oil and the gas blend up correctly.

Related Questions: 

1. Can I use 10W-30 in my lawnmower instead of SAE-30?

It is an excellent choice to use SAE 10W-30 instead of SAE 30. If you do not have any cost-related constraints, you should turn to 10W-30, as this gives your engine an even better cold start performance.

SAE-30 is a single-grade oil whose viscosity does not alter when starting hot or cold. 10W-30 has a cold starting viscosity of 10. This rating makes it an extremely preferred option for use in winters where the engine is cold, and a low viscosity level is required for lubrication.

2. Can I use 5W-30 for a lawnmower?

5W-30 is a thin, cold-engine oil like in snow blowers. If the weather in your region is often below zero degrees, you can turn to 5W-30 instead, as it offers better lubrication than thicker oils at low temperatures. However, if the temperature is high, the oil can become too thin to lubricate it adequately. Therefore, you should make a decision accordingly.

3. Am I supposed to use synthetic oils in my lawnmower?

Synthetic oils have a remarkable performance for engine lubrication relative to crude oil derivatives. The use of synthetic oils does not, however, affect the necessary oil change intervals. These oils are used where the engine’s prolonged activity is carried out, and high reliability is required.

4. Is there a difference between lawnmower oil and car oil?

Usually, lawnmower engines use the same oil like the ones used in cars. However, the owner’s manual on the lawnmower should be reviewed to see if the engine is susceptible to any additives or detergents. These small engines most frequently use SAE 30 or 10W-30 variants.

Final comments:

You should note that your Toro lawnmower engine has multiple moving parts, such as pistons and crankshafts, which work at high speeds and higher temperatures. As a result, the continuous wear rate makes these components extremely susceptible to overheating and degradation, causing your engine to perform poorly and ultimately seize. Therefore, an oil change should never be neglected, particularly at the beginning of the mowing season. The regular maintenance of the machine facilitates streamlined performance and long-lasting service life.

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