Owners and those considering the purchase of the Dixon ZTR Mowers may benefit from the following service tips and answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.
What type of gasoline should I use in my Dixon mower?
With the detrimental effects that ethanol is having on small engines today, we strongly recommend ethanol free fuel if it is available in your area. If it is not, then use a premium grade of fuel, preferably 92 octane or higher and add an ethanol fuel treatment like Star Tron to the fuel.
How frequently should the mower blades be sharpened?
This depends on conditions and use. Dry and sandy conditions will require more sharpening, possibly after every few hours of use. Blades should always be checked before each day of operation and sharpened if necessary.
How are the blades sharpened correctly?
– Always wear gloves and safety glasses.
– Sharpen the blades using disk grinder or a hand file.
– Clamp the blade flat in a bench vise by its edges.
– Sharpen the top of the blade only. Maintain a clean, flat edge on the bottom of the blade.
– Sharpen to a 30 degree cutting edge. Alternate the edges being sharpened to minimize heat damage.
– Check blades for balance prior to each use, with an inexpensive blade balancer found at most hardware stores and repair centers.
– If need be, sharpen the heavy side further in order to balance the blade.
Two Notes on Sharpening:
Do not use a bench grinder. They generate too much heat and can damage the blades, tempering, which softens the cutting edge and prevents it from staying sharp.
If no blade balancer is available, a round screwdriver can be clamped horizontally in a bench vise. If the blade remains horizontal when the hole of the blade is placed on the screwdriver, it is balanced.
What can be done to correct an uneven cut or poor discharge while cutting?
Poor discharge is related to the blade tip and ground travel speed. Always operate the engine at full speed and control the ground speed as needed. A ground speed: too high can result in cutting inefficiencies. Slow down in high grass. Do not cut more than 1/3 of the height of the grass. When cutting thick or high grass, first set the mower at the highest cut level and then re-cut at desired cut height. Poor operation can also be caused by improper tire pressure, grass buildup, and unbalanced or damaged blades.
What cleaning is recommended for the Dixon mower?
– At a minimum, clean your Dixon after every use.
– Clean the bottom of the deck after every use.
– If grass and leaves build up around the belts or spindles, multiple cleanings may be needed in day. A buildup around these components can increase friction and create a fire hazard.
– See the operator’s manual for proper Dixon mower cleaning procedures.
Should the wheels be turned or spaced for a wider stance?
Absolutely not. Broken wheel motor shafts could result from a wheel offset or a wheel change.
What procedure must I use to fix a flat tire on my mower, or must flat tires be fixed by a tire shop?
Go to a Dixon dealer properly equipped to fix flats. Dixon recommends removing the tubeless tire from the wheel and patching the puncture properly. Then, a thorough cleaning of the wheel rims and of the front caster tire beads is recommended after the flat is fixed. Leaving grass and debris behind can cause further flats or more serious problems. Only use liquid tire sealant in an emergency. Do not ever add bulk liquid to the tires – the wheel motor axles could break.
– Have an extra set of sharpened blades on hand in case of unexpected damage during use.
– Check hydraulic oils daily. Clean the top of the tank, remove the fill cap, and make sure the oil level is at the proper level on the dipstick.
– Change the hydraulic oil and filter once before each mowing season and then after every 500 hours of operation. See manual for instructions on doing this.
– For other mower service recommendations, such as where and how often to grease, please see the operator’s manual.
– Repairs under warranty must be made at an authorized Dixon dealer. Wherever service or repairs are made, be sure to use only genuine Dixon parts.
Finally, the Dixon ZTR Mowers operator’s manual is an excellent resource containing details on safe and trouble-free operation, recommended service frequency and procedures, as well as problem troubleshooting along with suggested solutions.