Ryobi Smart Trek 20″ Self-Propelled Lawn Mower Review: Pros & Cons
It’s easy to operate; it doesn’t require any special tools like a power drill or electric screwdriver. You don’t need to have any experience with these types of machines. It requires no maintenance other than regular oiling and cleaning. There are several features that make this machine more convenient than others.
The motor is quiet and smooth. It produces good output, which makes it very effective in cutting grass without causing damage to the turf. You will not hear any noise while operating this machine.
You can easily maneuver around obstacles such as trees, shrubs, rocks and other objects using its wheels. This machine is equipped with a steering wheel so you can control the direction of movement.
You can use the included handlebar grip to lift and move this machine around. This feature is useful if you want to work near your home or office.
There are two different blades that can be used for cutting grass. These blades are made from high quality materials, which ensures longer life span of the blade and better performance when it comes to cutting grass. They are also easier to maintain due to their simple design.
This machine is safe to use. It has a slip clutch that prevents the engine from malfunctioning and getting damaged when it is overloaded. It will also shut the engine off to prevent any major accidents from occurring.
The handles are made from soft and comfortable rubber material to prevent your hands from burning or getting injured while you use this machine for a longer period of time.
It takes more effort to control the mower when the grass is wet. This is a common issue with most riding mowers, however.
The cutting height cannot be adjusted as easily as other models. If you want to change the height, you will have to remove some of the deck parts.
The front wheels do not have enough traction. When the grass is wet or slippery, it can be challenging to maneuver around tight corners and curves.
They keys are not easy to reach for people who are tall. If you’re taller than 6 feet, you may have some difficulty when trying to remove the key from the ignition switch.
The Ryobi SmartTek battery system needs improvement. The grass box can only collect so much clippings before the battery dies on you. You can’t really finish mowing your entire lawn with one single charge. It would be nice if there was an indicator that displays the current gas level or battery power remaining.
How to Maintain Your Ryobi 40v Lawn Mower?
The blade and the deck (the part where the grass is collected) are the two main areas that need proper maintenance. The engine requires less attention. You just have to put some gas in it, and from time to time you should change the oil and oil filter.
The deck is more difficult to clean up. First, you need to turn off the mower and wait for all the moving parts to stop. Then you can raise the handle and tilt the mower until the deck is horizontal and facing upwards. Use a garden hose to rinse the accumulated grass from the cutting deck and blow away any dirt or debris with compressed air.
The flat surface of the deck is where the cutting occurs. It is also where the majority of grass is accumulated. After each use, you should check this surface and make sure that it is free from any clippings, sticks or other debris that did not get chopped up. If there are objects stuck on the cutting deck, you can try to remove them with your hand or use a brush to gently dislodge them.
The underside of the deck is prone to collecting wet grass. You should check this area and remove all clippings if they are not already blown or washed away. This part of deck can get easily clogged, which affect the performance of your mower and could potentially damage some of the internal moving parts.
The blade is what does all the cutting. It is important to keep this area sharp in order to have a good cut. If the blade becomes dull or nicked, it needs to be re-sharpened or replaced. Most mower blades can be easily accessed by tilting the deck.
You can sharpen the blade using a grinder or a file. If you do not have experience in this process, it might be best to take your mower the local shop and have them do it for you.
How to Sharpen a Mower Blade:
Step 1: Use a socket wrench to remove the bolts on the mower blade.
Step 2: File down the burrs on the blade and remove any nicks using a grinder or metal file.
Step 3: Apply a thin layer of motor oil to prevent rust.
Step 4: Re-install the mower blade and tighten the bolts to about 75 inch pounds torque. Be careful not to over-tighten the bolts, as this may cause the blade to be permanently distorted.
Caring for your engine is fairly easy. You just have to refill the gas tank when necessary, and change the oil after a certain amount of hours of usage. The oil filter may also need to be cleaned or changed on certain mowers. Always follow the maintenance schedule provided by the manufacturer or in your owner’s manual.
Step 1: Use a socket wrench to remove the oil filter and pour several ounces of fresh engine oil in the filter housing. Do not overfill.
Step 2: Re-install the oil filter and hand-tighten only. Using a wrench may cause the filter to be over-tightened, deforming it and causing a leak.
Step 3: Add two gallons of fresh gasoline to the fuel tank. Always use a fresh fuel container and do not retain any remaining fuel from the last time you filled up your mower.
Step 4: Re-start the engine and let it idle for several minutes. This allows the engine oil to be distributed and the filter to be replaced.
Step 5: Stop the engine and wait 15 minutes to let the oil drain back into the crankcase. Shut the fuel valve off and re-start the engine. Let it run for a minute and then turn it off. This allows the fresh fuel to completely replace the old.
Step 6: Check for leaks and re-start if necessary.
How to Sharpen a Mower Blade:
Step 1: Use a wrench to remove the mower blade.
Step 2: File down any burrs in the underside of the blade using a grinder or metal file. Also, remove any nicks with a grinder or metal file.
Step 3: Re-install the mower blade and tighten the bolts to about 75 inch pounds torque. Be careful not to over-tighten the bolts, as this may cause the blade to be permanently deformed.
The plastic or metal parts of your lawn mower can be cleaned using a garden hose with a spray nozzle, a small amount of dishwashing liquid and some water. Never use harsh solvents as these may cause the plastic to become brittle and break.
The engine can be cleaned using a small amount of gasoline in a container or spray can with a spark plug installed. Pull-start engines may require a second person to help pull the cord. Prime the fuel system, start the engine and allow it to run for a few minutes to burn off any rust or carbon build-up in the combustion chamber. Shut the engine off and allow it to cool before removing spark plug and spraying an appropriate amount of engine cleaner down the spark plug hole with a spray can or bottle with an extension tube. Let the engine cleaner sit for about 20 minutes, then shut the engine off and let it cool completely before removing spark plug.
Spray a light amount of oil in the spark plug hole to prevent rust from forming in the combustion chamber and re-install the spark plug.
Part 2: Exercise
Cardiovascular exercise is an important part of maintaining your general health and can increase your life span. According to the Surgeon General, 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week can increase your life expectancy by 2 years. Walking counts as moderate-intensity exercise. To reach the goal of 150 minutes, you can do 30 minutes per day, 5 days per week or any combination that adds up to 150 minutes per week. This section will go over different types of exercise and how to get started with walking.
Walking provides many benefits to your health and is a great way of getting started with exercise. It is low-impact, so it is easier on your joints than running, yet still provides a good cardiovascular workout. It is also possible to walk indoors on a treadmill, which allows you to exercise regardless of the weather. Check your local newspaper for coupons to help lower the cost of a gym membership or look online for discount coupons.
Walking doesn’t require any equipment and can be done anywhere at any time. It is a good idea to check with your doctor before beginning a new exercise routine, especially if you haven’t been physically active in quite a while. Your doctor may also be able to recommend a good place to walk in your area.
The key to walking is keeping a solid pace and a steady rhythm. Walk fast enough to get your heart rate up, but not so fast that you are out of breath. It might be a good idea to go with a friend the first few times if possible, so you can maintain a conversation while walking. If you find yourself struggling to talk, you’re walking too fast. If you’re not talking at all, you’re walking too slow.
Stretching When Finished
Always remember to cool down and stretch when you are finished walking. This keeps your muscles from tightening up and reducing the risk of injury.
Stand tall with your shoulders back, head high and legs slightly bent. Gently swing your arms from side to side. Lift your heels off the ground and point your toes forward, then point your toes to the side. Rotate your upper body in a full circle, then do the same thing with your lower body.
Walking With Friends
Walking is more fun with a group of friends and you can maintain a conversation while walking. Walking on a regular basis can also build friendships as you are more likely to meet your buddies for a walk rather than just meeting them for drinks after work.
Walking With Music
Music can add some variety to your walk and help pass the time. However, you will need to be extra careful when listening to music while walking as you could become more easily distracted.
Walking For Weight Loss
For most people, walking alone will result in some weight loss, but it probably won’t be enough to be noticeable without a change in your diet as well. Walking after meals will help you feel full and cut down on the amount you eat. Use smaller plates to keep your portions in check. Drink water instead of soda or juice to fill up without adding many calories.
Walking For Dogs
If you have a dog, you have a built-in walking partner. Just make sure you get them properly dressed for the weather and don’t forget to pick up after them when they’re done!
Maintain a steady speed and keep an eye on your dog while walking. If you’ve had them on a leash this whole time, they might try to dart off after a scent. You don’t need to walk as quickly or as far when walking your dog as you would if you were walking alone. Keep this in mind and don’t push yourself.
Walking With Your Kids
If you have kids, get them walking with you as soon as they’re old enough to walk! This is a great way to spend time with them and teach them the importance of physical fitness. Start out with short walks around your neighborhood and work your way up from there.
Walking With A Partner
If you have a partner, walking is a great way to spend time with them outside. Just like walking with kids, it’s best to start out slow and work your way up. Taking walks around your neighborhood is a great place to start.
Walking With Pets
If you don’t have kids or a partner but want something to keep you company while walking, try walking with your pets! Just remember that pets require much shorter walks than we do and you’ll need to clean up after them.
You can make your walk easier by using the right equipment. There is clothing designed specifically for walking such as moisture wicking shirts that quickly move sweat away from your body so that you don’t get wet. There are also special shoes, walking sticks, poles and more designed just for walking. If you have back problems, there are even devices that can strap onto your back and reduce the pressure on your body when you walk.
Most communities hold walks every year to benefit a local cause or charity. Check with your local chamber of commerce or community center to see what’s coming up. Some companies even hold walking events as team-building exercises for their employees.
Walking With Others
Finally, you can make your walks more enjoyable by walking with others. You can take your kids with you, as mentioned above. If you don’t have kids, try finding another parent that lives close to you and taking turns walking each other’s kids. You can also try walking with a partner if you have one. If neither of these options appeal to you, there are also groups designed for people to walk with others.
Walking is an excellent way to improve your fitness and your health. It doesn’t have to be a chore and can even be fun if you find the right group or partner to walk with. Use the information above to help you get started and make walking a part of your daily routine.
Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program.
Exercise and Physical Fitness Myths
Setting The Record Straight On Fitness Urban Legends
By D. McCallum
It’s easy to form misconceptions about your body and fitness. Maybe someone told you that eating carrots gives you night vision, or maybe you’re under the impression that if you stop exercising your muscles will quickly turn to flab. Whatever beliefs you’ve come to hold about your body, it’s time to learn the facts. Here are some common fitness myths, debunked.
THE POPULAR MYTH: Doing a full-body workout once a week is enough to maintain your musculature.
THE TRUTH: If you don’t work out each muscle group at least twice a week, you’ll not only fail to increase your muscle mass, but you’ll also begin to lose the muscle you already have. How quickly you lose muscle depends on how regularly you exercise. If you don’t exercise at all, you can lose muscle quite quickly as your body focuses on vital organs and preserves energy. If you exercise three times a week, you’ll maintain your muscle mass, but won’t build more. To actually grow larger muscles, you need to work out four or more days a week.
THE POPULAR MYTH: Most of the population is prone to flat feet and should therefore avoid exercises that put excess strain on this area such as jumping, running and squats. THE TRUTH: Most people are prone to flat feet, but this issue has nothing to do with the myth that you should avoid exercises like jumping, running and squats. In fact, people with normal arches can suffer from injuries related to these activities if they don’t train properly. However, if you have really flat feet (also known as pes planus), you can benefit from using exercises that support your arch such as single-leg squats on a bosu ball. THE POPULAR MYTH: Crunches are the best ab exercise. THE TRUTH: When people think of ab exercises, they usually think of crunches. Although this exercise is a good way of strengthening your rectus abdominis (the “six-pack” muscles), it’s not the only way. In fact, crunches can cause neck and back problems. If you want to engage your abs, there are many alternatives such as sit-ups, hanging leg raises and plank exercises. THE POPULAR MYTH: You can’t build muscle after the age of 25. THE TRUTH: As long you have enough calories and protein in your diet, you can build muscle at any age. However, the older you get the harder it is to add mass due to a diminishing testosterone production. But if you’re willing to put in the work, it is certainly possible. THE POPULAR MYTH: Carrots help your vision at night because of all the vitamin A. THE TRUTH: Carrots do contain a lot of vitamin A, but they won’t actually improve your vision. At best, eating more carrots will help prevent you from getting night blindness. THE POPULAR MYTH: Muscle turns to fat when you stop exercising. THE TRUTH: When you stop exercising, your body does not automatically turn all your muscle into fat. In fact, it’s nearly impossible for this to happen. What usually happens is that your muscles lose some of their tone and become smaller due to a lack of stimulus but they don’t actually turn into fat. If your body did do this, then it would be nearly impossible to lose any weight since our bodies would turn all the fat back into more muscle as soon as we started exercising again. MYTH: Without enough sleep you will suffer from sleep deprivation. THE TRUTH: Sleep deprivation is a state of having little to no sleep over a prolonged period of time. While you may not get enough sleep on a daily basis, you will not suffer any kind of permanent damage or die from lack of sleep in the short-term. For example, if you only get 5 hours of sleep per night for a week, it is likely that you will feel groggy or have trouble focusing. However, this will go away once you get back on a normal sleeping schedule. MYTH: You must drink 8 glasses of water daily in order to stay hydrated. THE TRUTH: This myth has been disproven by medical professionals and personal trainers alike. Most people get enough water by drinking other fluids such as juice and soda. Sometimes people confuse thirst for hunger (or vice versa) and end up drinking too much water which can be just as bad as not drinking enough. MYTH: If you push yourself to the point of sweating profusely, you will lose weight. THE TRUTH: While it is true that you will sweat when exercising and this may seem like a waste of vital fluids, it actually helps you lose weight in the long run. When you work out, your body temperature rises which causes you to sweat. Sweating helps cool your body down to a normal temperature and gets rid of some of the unnecessary “filth” (i.e. fat) that your body has stored. MYTH: Muscle turns to fat when you stop using it. THE TRUTH: As explained earlier, this is only partly true. While your muscles will at best atrophy (i.e. shrink) when you don’t use them, they won’t actually turn into fat. Myths similar to this often confuse weight gain with fat gain in general. While it is true that if you do not use a muscle then it will atrophy and you will notice your weight go down, this does not mean that your fat is disappearing, it just means that your body is converting the muscle into energy. MYTH: Running excessively can fix anything. THE TRUTH: While running can be great for your health, it is not a replacement for medical attention in most cases. If you are feeling pain, or anything just doesn’t seem right, stop running and go see a doctor. MYTH: Running fixes everything. THE TRUTH: While running can be great for your health, it isn’t a substitute for proper diet and nutrition in most cases. If you are eating poorly or not enough, you won’t see any health benefits from running until you improve your diet. MYTH: You can prevent muscle soreness by stretching before and after exercise. THE TRUTH: Studies have shown that there is no difference in the amount of muscle soreness felt whether you stretch before and after exercise or just after. This myth probably came about when people who stretched before and after exercise felt less soreness from the exercise itself and mistakenly attributed it to the stretching. MYTH: Drinking alcohol before or after exercise prevents dehydration. THE TRUTH: While it is true that drinking alcohol will make you more dehydrated, it won’t help prevent dehydration caused by exercise. This myth probably came about from people drinking alcohol after exercising and not being as severely dehydrated since they were already higher up on hydration scale. MYTH: Strenuous exercise in the cold causes your body to lose heat faster and increase the risk of hypothermia. THE TRUTH: Strenuous exercise will cause you to lose more fluid than normal, but it has no effect on your body’s ability to keep you warm. MYTH: You lose most of your body heat through your head. THE TRUTH: You body loses heat through every square inch of its surface area, however most of the time we only focus on the major loss areas which are the head, hands, and feet. MYTH: You can prevent or cure a cold by drinking a lot of liquids. THE TRUTH: You can prevent a cold by drinking a lot of liquids, but you won’t cure one with liquids. MYTH: Refrigerating a bottle of water will keep you hydrated. THE TRUTH: While refrigerating a bottle of water may keep it from tasting gross, the temperature change causes the liquid to absorb chemicals from the plastic which are then ingested when you drink. MYTH: Aching muscles need to be stretched. THE TRUTH: While many people believe that you need to stretch your muscles in order to prevent them from atrophying, it isn’t actually true. Stretching will help prevent cramps and reduce soreness, but there is no evidence that it will prevent muscle atrophy. MYTH: You need to eat fruits and vegetables in order to be healthy. THE TRUTH: While eating fruits and vegetables is very important for preventing disease and malnutrition, they aren’t actually necessary for the average person. It is possible to get all the nutrients and vitamins that you need from a combination of food and vitamin supplements. MYTH: You can cure a hangover by drinking more alcohol. THE TRUTH: While it is tempting to repeat this mistake, it isn’t true. While you may feel better for a short period of time, it just leads to an even worse hangover and can be dangerous. MYTH: You need to wait an hour after eating before you go swimming. THE TRUTH: The only reason for this waiting period is so that you are unable to complain that you got too cold and your stomach got squeezed in a crowded pool. It doesn’t actually make any difference whether or not you go swimming one hour after a meal. MYTH: Sleeping on your side prevents heart attacks. THE TRUTH: There is actually no scientific evidence that sleeping on your side has any impact on your health at all. It may have come about from people experiencing an increased amount of deaths while sleeping on their sides, but it was because they were also drinking alcohol and smoking at the time. MYTH: Alcohol helps you get to sleep. THE TRUTH: Alcohol will make you sleepy while it is in your system, but as soon as the alcohol leaves your body you will actually wake up even if you’ve been in a deep sleep. MYTH: Drinking coffee before going to bed will prevent you from sleeping. THE TRUTH: While coffee initially makes you more alert, after its effects have worn off you will actually feel very tired and almost hypnotized. MYTH: Drinking alcohol before you go to bed will cause you to sleep more deeply. THE TRUTH: Alcohol may make you feel as if you are sleeping more deeply, but it actually causes your brain to wake up faster and interrupt your sleep cycle. MYTH: You can prevent a hangover by drinking a lot of water after alcohol. THE TRUTH: While drinking water won’t actually cause a hangover, it also doesn’t prevent one.
Sources & references used in this article: