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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’m new to this forum and just purchsed my first Honda mower. Growing up we always had Craftsman mowers, and I had always wanted a honda with the hydrostatic drive. Well I finally pulled the trigger and could not be happier! I’m excited to meet some folks on here and contribute from time to time.

Aside from non-ethonal gas and an oil change after the first 5 hours of use, is there anything else that is recommended for longevity?
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Aside from non-ethonal gas and an oil change after the first 5 hours of use, is there anything else that is recommended for longevity?
Nice machine. Hope it holds up for you as long as my 40-year-old HR214 has for me. Follow the entire recommended maintenance schedule and keep the undersides clean and it'll be an excellent tool for the long term!

The HRX equivalent of my HR would be the HRX217HZA. Maybe someday when my HR214SMA is 50+. It was my first Honda of almost 20...
 
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I bought an HRR with the faulty rear wheel situation and wishing I bought an HRX. The HRX does not suffer from the crappy rear wheel design so far as I know. I didn’t know any better At the time. So far as I can tell you made the right choice. Congrats on the new machine.
 

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I’m new to this forum and just purchsed my first Honda mower. Growing up we always had Craftsman mowers, and I had always wanted a honda with the hydrostatic drive. Well I finally pulled the trigger and could not be happier! I’m excited to meet some folks on here and contribute from time to time.

Aside from non-ethonal gas and an oil change after the first 5 hours of use, is there anything else that is recommended for longevity? View attachment 62796
Congradulations,
Don't be shy about changing the oil. There is no oil filter so IMO changing the oil more often will prolong the engine life. I have only used 10W-30 synthetic after the initial Honda break-in oil change.
Also keep a couple extra genuine Honda air filters on hand. Thats another thing that I highly suggest replacing more often than the manual indicates.
Since this can be a 40+ year lawn mower (depending how you take care of it) I would recommend purchasing the shop manual if you are mechanically inclined, $45 from Honda. I am amazed how affordable and available the replacement parts are for my 2003 HXA.
Also using Honda Spray Cleaner & Polish will keep the plastic deck looking new.
My 2 cents.
Enjoy!
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, the party didn't last. The mower was working wonderfully for the first two mows. Per the manual, I changed the oil around the 5 hour mark. After doing so it fired up fine.

Yesterday, when I went to mow, the pullcord kicked back hard. It felt like I almost had my hand broken. I tried again, thinking I just caught it right at the top of the compression stroke, but the same thing happened. The motor would get to the top of the compression stroke and was almost impossible to pull over. My initial thought was that the motor was somehow partially seized, but I was able to get it started by catching the engine between compression strokes with the pull cord to avoid kickback, and it would start and ran perfectly fine.

I checked the oil and mowed my whole yard without any issues. Plenty of power, ran smooth, etc. After I was done, I let it cool down and then tried to start it again. The kick back issue was gone and it easily fired right up.

I called the dealer and they said I probably overfilled the oil. I've been around small engines most of my life and highly doubt that I screwed up something as simple as an oil change, but figured I would try draining some oil. Perhaps too much oil could lead to pressure in the crankcase. I started draining oil, a little at a time until it just hit the very middle/low spot on the dipstick, which is very hard to read with clean oil. When I first cranked it the issue was gone. All of the sudden, it came back and basically breaks my hand. I tried pulling the cord with the oil cap removed and the issue persisted, so it's definitely not an issue with pressure in the crankcase.

I read something about a compression release on these engines to prevent this sort of kickback at low RPMs. Could this be the issue?

It's going back to the dealer this week. Go figure this is the most expensive mower I've ever bought and in less than a month it's broken.
 

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is there anything else that is recommended for longevity
Nice machine- sexy in a lawn mower way:love:
avoid cutting wet grass, keep it clean, keep it dry, keep it warm (if you live in snow country)
I read something about a compression release on these engines to prevent this sort of kickback at low RPMs. Could this be the issue?
sorry for the sadness - a emotional roll coaster :cry:
Yes it sounds like something with the automatic start compression release
 
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