8 Equipment Maintenance To-Dos for Spring Cleaning


With springtime on its way, you know you’re going to have to get out and do some cleaning soon! The sun is shining again and the snow is officially holding off. With all of this change, are you prepared to get into your garden and spruce up the mess that winter left? There’s no better time than now to get out your tools and fix them up. You can’t have a successful green thumb if your thumb is all rusty! Here are a few ways to make your tools and equipment effective and ready for the upcoming season.

Equipment Preventative Maintenance 101

1. Check your spark plugs.

How are they doing? Rusty? Need a little T.L.C? Getting your spark plugs replaced isn’t too difficult of an ordeal. It won’t be too hard on your budget either! Your power tool will thank you.

2. Clean up your air filters.

It’s possible that some dirt has gotten in there while sitting there unused. Make sure debris hasn’t caused any damage. If there is a lot of dirt or damage, a replacement is suggested. Make a note to also clean debris from your other tools as well.

3. Retighten screws and nuts.

This is more important than you may think! If your nuts and screws aren’t tightened all the way, they aren’t effectively helping your tools on the job! Be patient as you tighten them, as this is a very important step and shouldn’t be rushed. The IRWIN 9-in-1 multi-tool screwdriver is the perfect partner for this task!

4. Sharpen saw chains.

Having sharp saw chains is absolutely vital for making sure that your saw is working at it’s best! If you don’t want to go through the effort of sharpening the chains, at the very least, change them. This is also a good time to think about replacing your trimmer line.

5. Lubricate, lubricate, lubricate!

This will make your life so much easier in both the short and long run! Be logical and inspect any part of your equipment where friction will undoubtedly occur. All those places need to be  lubricated! This will make working with your tools a lot easier and give them a longer life.

6. Mix in fresh fuel.

Your tools need fuel to get them going! Since you probably haven’t used the tools in a while because of the winter season, it is more important now than ever to use fresh fuel for that first startup. Use fuel that’s been stored for less than a couple of months, then add two-cycle engine oil.

7. Warm up your tools.

After a season of storage, don’t start using your tools just yet! Make sure you look them over and let them warm up. Take about a few minutes or so to just examine that everything is working fine before you start using your tools.

8. Inspect everything.

Inspection is key – This includes power cords on electric tools. Excessive damage and wear are a red flag that replacements are necessary. Check all of your equipment for any broken parts, as certain issues, can potentially be dangerous. Be sure that everything is in top working condition before using!

At Big R, we have a plethora of resources so you can get into spring cleaning the right way! Come swing by and we can show you how to get your tools back into tip-top shape.

About Big R

Bill and Pat Crabtree originated the Illinois Big R Stores in 1964 opening the first store in Watseka, Illinois. To date 20 stores have been opened in Illinois and Indiana; 2 stores in Ohio and 1 store in Wisconsin and we are still proud to be family-owned and operated. Our 12 Illinois stores are located in Watseka, Gibson City, Danville, Tilton, Pontiac, Morris, Pekin, Washington, Rochelle, Homer Glen, Streator and McHenry. Our 8 Indiana stores are located in Warsaw, 2 locations in Elkhart, Rochester, Wabash, Crawfordsville, Michigan City, and Marion. Our 2 stores in Ohio are located in Lima and Findlay. And 1 location in Wisconsin in Burlington. The offices and warehouses for Big R remain in Watseka, IL. Farm and Ranch store owners in the western states started the Big R brand name; they chose the name "Big R" to convey the "Ranch" identity. The Big R group is now comprised of 12 independent owners with store locations throughout the U.S. They all are members of Mid-States Distributing Company of St. Paul, MN. The Mid-States Coop has over 600 stores throughout the United States and Canada.