How to Mow Wet Grass Without Damaging Your Mower

You’ve probably heard that it’s best to mow grass when it’s dry. Wet grass can hurt your lawn mower and dull its blades. However, sometimes you have to mow grass when it’s wet. If it has been raining for days and your wife is tired of you “putting it off,” here are some methods you can use to cut your wet grass with the least amount of damage to your equipment.

So the next time that that your wife says “mow the lawn!” right after a rainstorm, you can respond, “Yes dear, I’ll do it right now.”


  1. Sharpen blades: One of the best things that you can do is sharpen the blades on your mower before beginning. Blunt blades tend to shred the grass – an effect that is even more pronounced when it is wet.
  2. Plan ahead: If it continues to rain and you must mow the grass while it is wet, try to mow more often. Trying to mow tall wet grass is even worse and it will clog up your mower extremely fast. If you normally mow your lawn once a week then try mowing it every 3-5 days instead.
  3. Raise mower deck: When grass stalks are heavy with water they will bend down with the weight. This makes it challenging to cut on a low setting and will wear down your mower’s blades quickly. Instead mow the grass down to 3 or 4 inches.
  4. Is your mower up the task? Mowers do age and sometimes you need to accept it’s time for your lawn mower to retire.

During mowing

  1. Side discharge: Trying to mulch or bag wet grass is a nightmare. Mulching it will create clumps of wet grass that can completely cover sections of your yard. This will lead to those areas of grass dying off if you are not careful to rake them.
  2. Mow from the outside in: Mow following the perimeter of your yard and working your way in. Set the side discharge to send grass toward the mowed section so that it gets spread evenly without being run over. As you mow, be careful to overlap your previous row halfway. It will take longer to complete the job doing this but it means that your mower must do less work. In this way you can preserve your mower blades for a longer period of time.
  3. Shut off mower occasionally and clean deck: No matter how careful you are while mowing you are going to need to clean it off as you go. Cutting wet grass will create a goopy, glue-like substance, and this gets sprayed all over your mower deck and blades. Turn the mower off and let the blades stop spinning. Then use gloves to wipe out as much of the wet grass clippings from it as possible. Be sure to do this often as you mow.

After mowing

  1. Clean deck: Once you are finished, take a few minutes to thoroughly clean your mower deck. You want to get all of the wet grass gunk off the mower deck. Though it will lengthen the project even more, if you can do this soon after mowing it will be much easier to remove.
  2. Rake grass clippings off lawn: Rake your lawn and spread out the wet grass clippings that are leftover. They tend to clump together. If you leave them, then sections of your grass will die off. Raking it to spread the wet clippings evenly will make a big difference.

Hopefully this will help you in the yard next time you have to mow in the rain or when the lawn is wet. Here at Beacon Equipment we have the ultimate range of John Deere mowers and ride-on mowers to help you get the job done well.