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9 tips for finding outdoor power equipment replacement parts

When you need a replacement part for lawn and garden equipment, the big question is what part do you need? If you still have the owner’s manual, it’s an easy task to look up the part number. But as we all know, sometimes owner’s manuals go missing in action. Or if you bought a used machine, maybe the owner’s manual didn’t come with it. In these cases, you need Plan B to find the part you need.

1) Bearings
If you can’t spot any serial numbers on the bearing, your best bet is to measure it. Measure the inside diameter, outside diameter and width diameter in that order. Many bearings are measured by the metric system.

2) Blades
To choose the right blade, take these measurements. Begin by measuring your blade’s length diagonally from cutting tip to cutting tip. For mulching blades, use the back side of the blade for ease of measurement. Next, measure the width of the blade at its widest part. Then measure the center hole. Finally, measure the center-to-center distance between the outer holes.

3) Carburetors
To identify the proper carburetor, find the model number, usually located on its side. For many carburetors, the model number is two letters followed by two or three numbers, such as WA-80.

4) Starters
You can employ two strategies in researching which starter to buy. You can research by the model of your mower, lawn tractor or snowblower, or you can research by the brand and model of engine powering the machine.

5) Alternators
Similar to the advice for starters, try your research for alternators in two ways. Search by the brand and model number of your lawn tractor or the brand and serial number of the type of engine. Sometimes, the lawn tractor model and engine make are the same. Kubota models will have Kubota engines. Other times, the lawn tractor model and engine will be different brands, such as a Kubota engine in a Grasshopper lawn tractor.

6) Solenoid Relays
Solenoid relays are best researched by the make, model and year of your equipment. You could start with an online search of the part number for a particular machine.

7) Engine Components
Even if you don’t have the original owner’s manual, you can look up part numbers online. Start with your engine brand, model and serial number. You can start narrowing down the information to find the specific part number with that information. You’ll also want to note whether the engine is a 2 or 4 cycle model.

8) PTO Clutches
PTO clutches installed in outdoor power equipment are often made by one of two manufacturers, Warner or Ogura. These manufacturers assign a part number to every PTO clutch they produce. When you remove the PTO clutch from your equipment, you may find a Warner or Ogura part number on a sticker or stamped into the clutch.

9) Tires
You'll select your tires by size, and there are two common methods for measuring tires. Here is how to begin your search for replacement tires.

Method 1: B-C-D

  • B equals overall section of width of the tire
  • C equals height of the tire measured from the peak of the tire to the bead
  • C equals rim diameter

Method 2: A-B-D

  • A equals overall diameter of the tire
  • B equals overall section of width of the tireC
  • D equals rim diameter

Equipment Type

  • Lawnmowers: AxBxC
  • Industrial Go Karts B divided by D and then minus C
  • High Wheel Mowers AxB

Preparing yourself with this knowledge will give you more confidence in choosing the part you need to keep your outdoor power equipment working flawlessly.

Lawn equipment maintenance