The best time to mow your lawn is when the grass is dry, but it comes a time during the mowing season when the rain keeps falling incessantly.
The grass grows tall, and you wonder whether you should or shouldn’t mow it.
Can you mow wet grass?
Yes, you can mow wet grass, but we strongly recommend against it.
This is due to the downsides it comes with: you can slip and fall, the grass clipping can clump, leaving your lawn looking ugly and patchy, and the grass is more likely to stain your clothes when wet.
If using an electric lawnmower, the water can get into the machine putting you at the risk of getting electrocuted.
Why should you not cut the grass when it’s wet?
Mowing the grass when wet comes with plenty of downsides that include:
Mowing wet grass increases your risk of personal injury.
According to Science Daily, lawnmowers are among the leading causes of amputation in the United States, with 13 children being taken to the hospital every day.
Mowing the grass when wet increases the risk of injury, especially if you mow on hills and slippery areas. When you fall, you can easily bruise yourself or even break a bone.
In addition to slipping and falling on the slippery surfaces, you can also cut your toes, especially if not wearing tough work boots, such as steel-toed boots.
Cutting wet grass can damage your lawn.
For an ideal cut, the grass blades should be standing up off the ground.
Since wet blades are heavy, they don’t stand up straight, so you don’t have an easy time cutting them.
When mowing, you can’t easily get access to them, so you end up with tears instead of a clean cut.
This not only leaves your lawn looking ugly, but it also opens the door for fungus while the moisture provides a medium for the fungus to spread.
Wet grass doesn’t mulch well, so it falls out of the deck in large, heavy clumps.
Instead of spreading back into the lawn as mulch, these clumps mat down, restricting airflow, which can eventually kill your lawn in patches.
The act of making passes up and down a wet lawn can hurt your lawn.
This is because the wheels can sink into the moist surface. This leaves your yard looking ugly when it dries up.
In the worst case, the wheels cause rugs on the surface, which directly damages the grass.
Wet grass is harmful to your mower.
If you are asking, will mowing wet grass ruin the lawnmower? Yes, it will ruin it.
The damp grass’s moisture is harmful to the lawnmower fuel tank, its metal parts, and even its engine.
Unless you are using a stabilizer in the fuel tank, introducing moisture in the tank causes corrosion.
The grass clippings can also cake on the lawnmower’s underside, increasing the chances of the lawnmower rusting.
Cutting wet grass gives you more work.
Since you don’t get a clean cut when you mow your lawn when wet, you have to mow it all over again after just a short time.
Extremely wet grass tends to bend over, increasing the mower’s chances of missing or knocking over tall grass blades.
When the grass dries and gets back up, the blades that you missed the first time stand out, giving your lawn an ugly, uneven cut.
To fix the look, you have to mow again, which is synonymous with doing double work.
As mentioned above, when you mow when wet, you easily stain your clothes and shoes, which gives you a lot of cleaning work later on.
How long should you wait to mow the grass after it rains?
Ideally, you should wait for the grass to dry enough such that you can walk through the lawn without getting wet shoes.
If it’s spring or you live in more humid regions, this isn’t always possible, so you should mow the grass when it is partially wet.
Mowing wet grass
When there is no alternative but mowing while the grass is wet, you should consider several tips to increase the chances of giving the lawn a clean cut.
Before you begin mowing, test the ground and ensure it’s not soggy.
If your yard sinks as you walk, it’s too wet.
Due to the risk involved with using an electric lawnmower, you shouldn’t use one.
So if you are one of the people asking, “Can you cut wet grass with an electric mower,” no, you can’t and shouldn’t unless you want to get electrocuted.
If you are ready for the consequences of mowing a wet lawn, go ahead with it but consider these tips:
Keep the blades sharp.
Dull blades put a lot of stress on your lawn by shredding the grass instead of cutting it.
As mentioned above, this increases the chances of diseases getting into your yard and spreading.
Reduce the chances of damaging the grass by using a sharp blade.
Sharpening lawn mower blades is easy as all you need to do is buy a blade sharpening kit from your local garden supply store.
If you are strapped for time or aren’t a handy person, take your mower to your local mower repair center.
Discharge the grass on the side
Instead of bagging or mulching, leave the clippings in place to feed the turf.
Watch your fuel
The ethanol in gasoline has a strong affinity for moisture, which corrodes the fuel tank.
When mowing during the cold season, only buy enough fuel and take caution that you don’t overfill your lawn mowing machine.
You can prevent fuel contamination by using a stabilizer.
Clean the lawnmower
To keep your lawnmower in good condition, and prevent rusting, clean out the underside of the machine. Does your lawnmower have a washout port? Use it to clean the deck.
Scrape the deck with a putty knife, then use a wire brush to clean the lawnmower tires.
For more tips on how to effectively mow the grass when wet, read this detailed guide.
Can you mow in the rain?
Regardless of how long the grass is, don’t mow while it’s raining.
This is because the water can harm the mechanical components of the lawnmower.
The situation is worse if using an electric lawnmower with an extension cord.
If the connections are exposed to moisture, you damage the lawn mowing machine, not to mention your increased risk of electrocution.
Which is the best lawn mower for wet grass?
You can use a commercial grade or consumer-grade lawnmower to cut the wet grass. The most vital thing you should do is to keep the blades sharp.
If your blades are worn out, consider installing gator blades with serrated tips as they do a better job at breaking up the wet grass clumps.
The rainy season comes with its fair share of gifts, but it’s not the right season for mowing.
Luckily, by putting the above tips into action, you will have an easy time maintaining a healthy, lush lawn, all year round.