If you want to keep your lawn in shape this season you need two things right off the bat. It’s the sharp blades and best engine oils for the lawnmower.
Since you have landed on this page, it’s likely you aren’t concerned about the lawnmower blades right now. In other words, we can assume you are searching for lawnmower oil so that the engine can run smoothly for a long time to come.
To give you the best bang for your money here we’re going to share a comprehensive buying guide on the best grade oil for lawn mower. You’ll also find relevant information at the end that you might be interested in.
Table of Contents
- In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top 3 Picks:
- Top 10 Best Grade Oil for Lawn Mower 2021 – Reviews
- #1. Briggs & Stratton 30W Engine Oil – Best Overall
- #2. Briggs and Stratton 100074 5W-30
- #3. John Deere Turf-Gard SAE 10W-30 Oil
- #4. Honda 08207-10W30
- #5. Pennzoil 550034991-6PK SAE 30
- #6. Kohler PK2 Command SAE 10W-30
- #7. Toro 38916 SAE 30 Oil
- #8. Quaker State (550035190-6PK) SAE 30
- #9. Husqvarna SAE 30 4-Cycle Mower Engine Oil
- #10. Lawn-Boy 89930 2- Cycle Ashless Engine Oil
- How to Choose a Grade Oil for Lawn Mower?
- Lawn Mower Engine Oil Brands
- Steps on Checking Lawn Mower’s Oil Level
- #Q1 How often to change the oil in a lawnmower?
- #Q2 How much oil should you add to the lawnmower?
- #Q3 What happens when you add too much oil?
- #Q4 Can a lawnmower run without oil?
- #Q5 Can you use automobile oil in a lawnmower?
- #Q6 Is there any difference between 4-stroke and 2-stroke oils?
- #Q7 What does SAE stand for in the grading of lawnmower oils?
- Final Words
In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top 3 Picks:
Top 10 Best Grade Oil for Lawn Mower 2021 – Reviews
I’ve picked ten-grade oil for lawnmowers from my experience. With the in-depth analysis, you’ll get to choose the compatible one for your need.
#1. Briggs & Stratton 30W Engine Oil – Best Overall
- Tested and approved by Briggs & Stratton engineers
- Warranty certified and recommended in all Briggs & Stratton manuals
- A high quality detergent oil classified SJ/CD by the API
When it comes to the best oil for engine-powered tools you can’t go wrong with the brand, Briggs & Stratton.
The quality of their products is outstanding and thus regarded as the best lawn mower oil manufacturer by a huge number of users.
And, one of their best-rated oil is none other than Briggs & Stratton SAE 30W due to the effectiveness it holds to run smaller engines like lawnmowers.
This premium Briggs & Stratton SAE 30W is known to keep the engine cool for an extended time despite continuous use. With this, you can also limit engine maintenance costs and increase oil change intervals significantly.
With a higher rating specified as SJ/CF, this superior detergent oil ensures optimum engine performance and cleans everything nicely with minimum friction.
The small engine oil is tested and meets all standards required to run all 4 cycle air-cooled engines.
It comes with a viscosity grade of SAE 30W, particularly formulated to match the warming condition. This keeps the engine operating at varying temperature ranges mostly between 40F to 100F.
- Reach small engine parts
- Enough oil (48oz) to use multiple times
- Reduce lawn mower engine frictions to nil
- Don’t work well at freezing temperatures
#2. Briggs and Stratton 100074 5W-30
- Pack of (2) 1-Quart (32 oz) Oil Bottles
- Genuine OEM Briggs and Stratton Oil
- 100% Synthetic SAE 5W-30
We have mentioned earlier that Briggs and Stratton is the best lawn mower oil manufacturer. Their products meet all the demands that 4 stroke air-cooled engines require.
And, the Briggs & Stratton 100074 5W-30 is no different. This top-notch synthetic oil works best to extract powerful mowing from your riding lawnmower.
Due to the ‘inherent strength’ at the molecular level, the Briggs & Stratton 100074 5W-30 oil provides excellent thermal stability at the highest level for the longest possible time.
The oil is relatively thinner, reaches all engine parts, and thus promotes trouble-free engine operation. It produces better lubrication and limits overheating close to zero.
This genuine synthetic OEM oil comes in a viscosity rate of SAE 5W-30, making it good enough to keep the engine operating in all kinds of weather and temperature ranges. This also ensures that the engine uses less oil when it starts.
Although recommended for lawn tractors and Craftsman riding lawn mowers, the engine oil provides excellent protection for all 4 stroke air-fueled engines. It works fine with 2 cycle motor as well.
Synthetic oil prevents varnish and sludge from forming. This, in turn, reduces engine maintenance costs and extends its service life substantially.
- Improves fuel efficiency
- Allow all weather protection
- Maintain viscosity at varying temperature
- Offer better lubrication at deep engine parts
- Might produce coking in dusty condition
#3. John Deere Turf-Gard SAE 10W-30 Oil
- 4-Cycle engine oil
- For gas engines only
- SAE 10W-30
Talking about the best lawn mower engine oil one name you can’t go past is John Deere. And their Turf-Gard SAE 10W-30 is a huge name in the oil industry for small engines.
It is a multi-viscosity engine oil rated for SAE 10W-30 in viscosity allowing it to create quick oil transmission at varying temperature ranges (0-100F).
The oil lubricates the engine parts consistently and maximizing their performance with negligible friction and head up. Moreover, it works great at cold starts and is safety tested to combat breakdowns at high temperatures.
The John Deere Turf-Gard SAE 10W-30 is for use with utility and lawn equipment that has smaller 4 cycle gasoline engines.
This particular oil keeps the engine run fluently and prevents deposits from forming. Thus it offers less wear and improves engine longevity.
- Top-quality oil at a fair price
- Improves fuel efficiency in small engines
- Limit friction and enhance the engine’s health
- Provide highest engine protection at different temperature
- Don’t work well at sub-zero temperatures
- The filter might create noises
#4. Honda 08207-10W30
If you want to refill your Honda-powered lawnmower with the best engine oil then this SAE 10W30 grade with the same brand is your best bet.
The oil is categorized as an SAE 10W-30 type and is not synthetic. That said, it is a decent rating, and once refilled it will keep your engine operational in all temperatures (0-100F).
This is not a vehicle oil and is explicitly designed to suit Honda 4 cycle lawn mower and pressure washer. This oil is blended with polymer additives and base stocks, which stops thermal breakdown and fights deposit formation in Honda engines.
The viscosity response of the oil remains consistent at different temperatures. Also, it reduces overheating significantly due to effective lubrication.
In other words, with this Honda 08207-10W30, you can extract the best engine performance from Honda products in the long run.
- Meets API (American Petroleum Institute) standards
- Reduce frequent oil changes
- Improves overall engine performance
- Keep the engine cleans and friction-free
- Enhance engine health and durability
- The engine requires more oils to start at freezing conditions
- Not the best option for warming conditions
#5. Pennzoil 550034991-6PK SAE 30
- For Best Performance, Follow The Manufacturer'S Recommendations In Your Vehicle Owner’S Manual
- Package Weight: 5.579 Kilograms
- Compatible With Vehicle Type: Car
If you are searching for one of the finest oil for your riding lawn mower to use regularly, this Pennzoil SAE 30 could be an ideal choice.
And, for people who wonder about the consistency of Briggs & Stratton SAE 30 motor oil, this is a true alternative for them as well.
This is a single viscosity oil rated at SAE 30, making it a good option for engines that you operate in regular weather conditions.
The Pennzoil 550034991 SAE 30 is particularly made to backs smaller gasoline engines and retain the performance consistently over time.
This monograde oil reaches out and lubricates small areas to fight corrosion and wear.
Pennzoil uses a patented cleansing formula that decontaminates the engine and prevents sludge actively so that these can’t get in the way of engine performance.
Usually, this serves well at warming conditions but when the temperature reaches 60F or above this isn’t the ideal option.
- Comply with API standards
- Retain performance in older engines
- Effective lubrication to keep the engine fluent
- Resist deposit formation
- Can’t deliver the right protection in harsh winter
#6. Kohler PK2 Command SAE 10W-30
- Kohler Synthetic Blend Universal 10W-30 Oil - 25 357 64-S Has Replaced 25 357 05
One of our favorite recommendations on the list of best lawn mower engine oil is the Kohler SAE 10W-30.
Being a multi-viscosity oil you get multiple benefits to improve the overall performance of any single cylinder or smaller (4 cycles) engine.
This engine oil is rated SJ. This means it is a high-quality detergent oil that you can use in wearing out (older) engines to increase their performance back to normal again.
It’s a multi-viscosity oil classified as 10W-30. With this, the movement of machine parts becomes fast and easy.
This also improves your cold starting and keeps the engine functioning properly at different temperatures (particularly between the 0 to 100F range).
In terms of anti-wear performance, it is better than conventional automotive oils.
Thanks to the use of top-quality ZDDP (Zinc/Phosphate) molybdenum additives. It keeps the engine functional for the longest possible time.
The oil keeps the engine parts clean and lubricated once the operating temperature is reached. At the same time, it reduces noise and stops varnish or deposits building.
- Efficient noise reduction
- Expands interval between oil changes
- Maintains long term engine’s durability
- Runs engine smoothly cold temperatures
- Comparatively costly but worth the cost
- Might fail to retain molecular integrity at high temperatures
#7. Toro 38916 SAE 30 Oil
- 18 Oz Bottle
- Genuine OEM Toro product
- To maximize the performance of your Toro lawn mower, we highly recommend using Toro oil, which has been specifically formulated for best results. Toro SAE 30 engine oil passed the strictest requirements in thousands of hours of testing in hundreds of engines. Our lawn mower oil meets or exceeds performance requirements of all OEM products
A superior proprietary product from the famous Toro brand. It is optimized to deliver the best engine performance specifically when used in smaller air-cooled engines hence the lawnmowers.
This particular oil has gone through a number of strict safety tests to conclude that it fulfills and exceeds all the performance requirements needed for OEM engines.
This Toro oil has a single-grade viscosity rate of SAE 30. It means the oil is relatively thicker and best used for warming conditions. On the flip side, you should avoid using it during winter as the oil becomes thicker and may lose some flow.
When used under appropriate conditions, this oil reduces molecular shearing drastically and thus ensures optimum engine fluency. This also prevents the formation of performance-robbing deposits. All of these then provide the scope to prolong the engine’s life and match your expectations.
- Efficient oil at a fair price
- Backs engine’s life with prevailing power
- Greater warm weather functionalities
- Minimize frictions for trouble-free operation
- According to a few users, the engine might need frequent oil changes
#8. Quaker State (550035190-6PK) SAE 30
- For best performance, follow the manufacturer's recommendations in your vehicle owner’s manual.
- Wear is one of the toughest enemies your engine faces; it can reduce engine life and rob your engine power; Quaker State heavy duty motor oils are engineered to reduce wear and protect against high temperature and severe service operation
- Quaker State heavy duty motor oils meet or exceed API SN and prior API SM, SL, SJ service categories
If you are looking for powerful and heavy-duty engine oil for your bigger lawnmower then this Quaker State SAE 30 deserves your best attention. Moreover, Quaker is a trusted brand that you can easily rely on to deliver consistent outcomes.
This exceptional motor oil is classified as SAE 30 in terms of its viscosity. It gives a consistent thermal response under regular weather.
The oil meets and exceeds all the latest API service categories including SN (2011), SM(2010), SL(2004), and SJ(2001). This gives it superiority over conventional motor oils available nowadays.
The biggest feature of this motor oil is the cutting-edge wear protection to survive severe, high-temperature operations.
This is engineered twice as much as what is needed to comply with industry wear standards. Consequently, this allows the engine to retain optimal performance for as many years as possible.
Quakers put a lot of emphasis to test the consistency of their oil under real-world conditions.
This ensures that the oil produces reliable performance covering a long distance right after an excessive idle time. So, you can be confident buying a bottle of this oil in terms of the durability and longevity it offers to the engine.
The industrial-grade oil features acid neutralizing additives and deters combustion acids from corroding your lawnmower engine.
This locks engine performance even when your machine gets older and provides the power it needs to cut rugged grass with ease.
- Enhance engine service life
- Incredible oil at an affordable price
- Don’t create harmful smells or smokes
- Industry winning corrosion resistance
- Perform well at harsh engine condition
- Has limitations in sub-zero weather conditions
#9. Husqvarna SAE 30 4-Cycle Mower Engine Oil
- SAE 30 4-Stroke Mower Engine Oil
- Ideal size for 2hp - 5.5hp mowers
- For most air cooled 4-stroke engines
Husqvarna has been a dependable name to garden equipment owners and their oils are no exception.
Designed especially for small Husqvarna mowers, this premium 4-cycle SAE 30 oil will keep them in proper shape.
The oil provides the best protection to most air-cooled 4-cycle small lawnmowers with engine capacity ranging between 2hp to 5.5hp.
This high-quality oil is tested and comply with all API specifications and is classified with a higher SJ service rating for gasoline engines.
The oil is SAE 30 weighted in viscosity grade and performs better in regular weather conditions (temperature range 40-100F).
When used under the right conditions, this oil ensures consistent in-grade performance with proper shear stability. At high temperatures, this protects against excessive viscosity decrease and provides the necessary engine power.
At the same time, the oil is formulated to fight engine wear and reduce scuffing significantly. All of these drastically improves trouble-free operation and prolong engine service life.
- Excellent wear protection
- Effective performance in high temperatures
- Increase oil changes interval
- Not appropriate for freezing conditions
#10. Lawn-Boy 89930 2- Cycle Ashless Engine Oil
- Formulated to withstand the higher operating temperatures in today's 2-cycle engines
- Special additives clean and prevent engine deposit buildup which helps maintain engine power and engine life
- Unique formula allows easy mixing regardless of temperature conditions
Our final recommendation is gas-powered lawnmowers, but that doesn’t mean you have to compromise the quality. It is especially the case when you use it for a 2-cycle Toro or Lawn-Boy engine.
This Lawn-Boy ashless oil is compatible with 2 cycle engines and works fine with engines in higher temperature conditions.
However, the synthetic aspect of the oil stops molecular shearing, allows it to mix easily, and promotes easier starts in all weather conditions.
This is a quality detergent oil that comes with special additives requires to keep the engine clean and free from deposit buildup.
As a result, it supports the overall fuel efficiency and prevents the engine’s moving parts to lose their power over time.
The Lawn-Boy 89930 uses an all-one formula that engages its chemical integrity when stored for a long haul. It stabilizes the fuel and maintains its economy.
The unique composition of the oil provides safeguards against chemical breakdown in high operating temperatures. Thus it locks the engine’s performance and makes it lasts longer.
- Doesn’t lose chemical integrity over time
- Increase older engine’s efficiency
- Low ash oil promotes & retain engine health
- Overpriced for the 8 oz. bottle
How to Choose a Grade Oil for Lawn Mower?
First and foremost you have to check the manufacturer’s manual to figure out the best oil for your lawnmower. Despite this, understanding the key aspects is important given that engines vary by lawnmower models and their requirements aren’t identical too.
Types of Oil
There are three types of lawnmower oils you can use; Two-Stroke, Four-Stroke, and Synthetic engine Oil. Two-stroke oils are lightweight and best suited for small engines i.e., push mowers.
On the other hand, if you own larger machines such as walk-behind or riding lawn mowers you should opt for four-stroke engine oil.
That said, synthetic oils suit all engine types. They reduce wear on engine parts and operate well at higher temperatures.
Viscosity refers to the thickness and flow rate of engine oils at a certain temperature to lubricate engine parts. Hence, deciding on the viscosity grade largely depends on the weather you live in.
For example, thick or viscous oils get thicker at low temperatures and fail to reach small engine parts to crank. It will be harder to start the engine as a result. Thus lower grade (thinner) oils are ideal here.
- SAE 30: Usually the best engine oil for lawn mowers in warming conditions (and smaller engines)
- SAE 5W-30: Provide the best results in freezing temperatures.
- SAE 10W-30: Suit when the temperature fluctuates (between 0 to 100 F) and ease cold weather starting in particular. But increases oil consumption.
- Vanguard 15W-50: The go-to oil type for continuous commercial usage.
If you switch to synthetic oils with the same rating you can save significant oil consumption.
Note: The viscosity of engine oils can be rated in two numbers. This is called the multi-viscosity grade.
The first one refers to the ability of the oil to flow at low temperatures (“W”-Stands for Winter) and the other one specifies the same for high temperatures.
As the number gets lower the oil gets thinner (less viscous) and the faster it will flow.
Make sure the oil you are using is either OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer’s) or API (American Petroleum Institute) (categorized as SF, SG, SH, SJ, or higher) rated for quality performance and detergent additives respectively.
Besides this, check whether the oil features anti-wear chemical agents (or technology) to save the engine’s moving parts from corrosion while it runs.
Buying the right amount of oil according to engine capacity is important. It will save you a trip to the hardware store to buy the rest of the risk to store spare oils before the next change.
Lawnmowers don’t require oils refill frequently means the overall quality of the spare oils could be impaired.
Different age of engines runs well on different grades of oil. For example, 10W-30 grade oil is ideal for modern engines and SAE 30W for aged motors.
Lawn Mower Engine Oil Brands
Briggs & Stratton
Based in the USA, the Briggs & Stratton Corporation (BRASCO) is a leading manufacturer of small engines, outdoor equipment, and related accessories.
Their products represent their remarkable learning curve of 110 years, leading them to bring a number of groundbreaking job site products, residential and commercial engines.
They transformed the lawn care industry with their lightweight aluminum engine back in 1953.
Now they’re an iconic name in the world of the best oil for lawn mowers that backs engine health for a long time, keeping maintenance and repair costs to the lowest.
When it comes to snowblowers, lawnmowers, and irrigation equipment Toro is the name that stands out along with other big names in the industry. This US-based company started its venture back in 1914 and has never looked back since then.
Toro is extremely popular for its world-class products that provide superior stability against harsh conditions.
They have unfolded their operations in 125 countries while owning premium lawn mower brands like Lawn-Boy, eXmark, and Hayter at the same time.
Since its origin in 1984, Honda has been a famous brand in Global Market, especially around the automotive sector.
Now, Honda is also the most recognized manufacturer of lawn mower parts backed with a ton of positive feedbacks from its users.
The GXV and GCV lawn mower engines are examples of their innovative creations that come at the convenience of their best lawn mowers engine oils.
Their collection of high-quality engine oils offers excellent firmness against molecular sheering, oxidation, and decomposition to keep the engine run smoothly for a great deal of time.
Steps on Checking Lawn Mower’s Oil Level
It’s crucial to check oil levels in order to avoid the engine to seize. Here is how you can do it:
- First, remove the dipstick cap by twisting it counter-clockwise using mild pressure.
- Then remove the dipstick and wipe it with a rag to allow accurate reading.
- Now match the grooves with the dipstick cap’s teeth and reinstall the dipstick.
- Twist the dipstick cap clockwise with slight pressure and reinstall it.
- Follow the first step again and see the oil level on the base of the dipstick blade.
- Check whether it stays between the full and add marks.
- Fill in a few ounces for low oil level and then close the cap.
- Wait for a few moments to let the oils settle and recheck the oil level at the end.
#Q1 How often to change the oil in a lawnmower?
Depending on whether you own a small or large machine the engine might last up to 25 or 50 hours of operation respectively.
For a brand new device, you might need oil changes after the first five hours or whatever is specified by the manufacturer’s manual.
However, it is good practice to check the oil level after every use. This is because factors like high temperatures, hilly terrain, wet grass, or heavy dust might increase the frequency of oil changes.
#Q2 How much oil should you add to the lawnmower?
The best answer is available in your lawn mower user manual. If you lost it, you can find this on the manufacturer’s website. However, depending on whether it is a walk-behind and riding lawn mower, engines can take up to 18oz and 64oz of oils respectively.
#Q3 What happens when you add too much oil?
The excess oil could get aerated or begin to burn and might prevent the engine to start properly.
#Q4 Can a lawnmower run without oil?
No. Lack of lubrication means increased frictions that could result in damaged engine parts beyond any repair.
#Q5 Can you use automobile oil in a lawnmower?
You cannot use oils designed for heavy-duty engines like cars in small engines like lawnmowers. This is especially the case for two-stroke motors. However, you can use automobile oil in your big lawn mower engines (4 stroke engines).
#Q6 Is there any difference between 4-stroke and 2-stroke oils?
Unlike 4-cycle oil, 2-cycle oil is added directly to the gasoline and burned with it. They tend to be thinner and refined with several additives to allow better combustion.
#Q7 What does SAE stand for in the grading of lawnmower oils?
SAE represents the “Society Of Automotive Engineering” which established a brilliant coding method to rate motor oils in line with their viscosity at a specific working temperature.
It’s a no-brainer that your lawnmower is as good as the oils you choose for it. More than that, the best grade oil for lawn mower engines ensures that it lasts as long as possible. We hope, by now you have already nailed your best oil according to your lawnmower type. To tell the truth, each one of them has the potential to an extent for you to consider but it’s not unusual to be in two minds.
Therefore, to help you decide, we recommend Briggs & Stratton 30W Engine Oil for small engines and Briggs and Stratton 100074 5W-30 for bigger lawnmowers when quality matters the most. Lastly, we wish you are able to back your weekend with the joy of your lawn by fueling the engine with the best oil.