- by Bryan Veldboom - updated on 4/21/2022
The grass is getting greener outside, which means it's time to pull your riding lawn mower out of storage. Riding lawn mower batteries typically last between three and five years, although they can die much faster if they aren't maintained properly. If you're having a hard time starting your mower back up again, follow these troubleshooting tips. If the engine still won't start, you've probably got a dead battery on your hands. This article will help walk you through the basics of lawn mower batteries, so you can find a suitable replacement.
The first thing you need to know when shopping for a new battery is your mower's voltage requirement. Most riding mowers take a 12 volt battery, although some smaller mowers rely on a 6 volt battery. If you're unsure what type of battery your mower requires, you can check the voltage of your old battery, or look up the information in your owner's manual or on the manufacturer's website.
The next thing you want to pay attention to is your battery's chemistry. Most riding mowers rely on lead acid batteries, although some use lithium-ion or lithium iron phosphate batteries. When selecting a replacement battery, it's very important that the new battery you select shares the same chemistry as your old one.
Despite the fact that they work very similarly, lawn mower batteries are not the same as car batteries and are much smaller than those used in cars. In order to make it easier to find the right battery, the Battery Council International (BCI) has broken batteries down into a number of different group battery sizes. Most lawn mower batteries fall into the Group U1 format.
Another thing you need to know is your battery's terminal type and position. This information will also appear in the group battery sizing standards. For instance, the "U1" group size has two different options: U1L and U1R. Group U1L batteries have the positive terminal located near the top left corner of the battery, while a Group U1R battery has the positive terminal positioned near the top right corner. When replacing your lawn mower battery, be sure to identify which type of terminal positioning your mower requires.
The final thing you want to pay attention to is the number of cold cranking amps your replacement battery needs. Without getting too technical, the battery's CCA rating tells you how well the battery will perform in low temperatures. A lawn mower battery will have a much lower number of CCAs than a typical auto battery. For most mowers you'll want a battery with a minimum rating of 145 CCA. Your owner's manual or the manufacturer's website will supply you with the correct CCA specifications for your mower.
Shop our selection of lawn tractor and mower batteries either online or at your nearest Batteries Plus location. If you're looking for a way to maintain your riding mower battery when it's not in use, we have plenty of battery chargers available. We suggest the X2Power 1.5 Amp Charger, which is perfect for off-season storage. You'll also find plenty of useful information in our blog. Some related titles include "How to Get the Most Out of Your Lawn Mower Battery" and "How Do I Winterize My Lawn Mower?"