FINDING THE MODEL/SERIAL NUMBERS OF YOUR LAWN EQUIPMENT
This can be confusing, but itís important, especially to the do-it-yourself repair person, because all replacement parts are pegged to these numbers, most usually the model number. But, before we go into how to find the specific model number(s) for your equipment, letís consider a few important things:
Most mowers have two model numbers: 1. the model of the mower itself (that is, the body and assorted equipment), and 2. The model of the engine.
Nonetheless, if all else fails, here are some hints about how/where to find body and engine model numbers for the most common equipment.
- Very often, the mower itself and the engine powering the mower are made by different companies, neither of which is the one the company selling the mower!
- Many lawn equipment companies have recently been bought out by other such companies, making for a confusing situation.
- Look for model numbers on parts that typically donít have to be replaced; the body itself, the housing surrounding the pull cord, etc.
- Remember that your manual will always have the model and serial numbers for your equipment, and that the Internet is a great resource as well.
Body/Deck (Everything but the engine)
The model and serial number of an Ariens walk-behind mower is printed on a sticker on the back of the deck, behind the engine.
The model and serial number of an Ariens riding mower can be located on the side of the mower frame, on the side of the dash support, or under the seat.
Most of the time, you can find the Craftsman model and serial number on the top of the mower. If you were standing behind it and using it, the identification tag would be on the top rear portion of the body, between the wheels.
The model and serial number is on a plate on the mower deck behind the engine. It is near the location where the bag attaches to the mower.
A common to find the location of the model and serial number on a John Deere riding mower is at the rear of the mower, just to the right of the left tire.
Usually the model number for a push-mower or a self-propelled unit is on a sticker or an etched plate located on the center of the mower body.
Find the model number for a Murray riding mower by looking under the seat.
The walk-behind model and serial number plate is located on the rear left side of the body.
Riding mower model and serial numbers are on a plate located on the underside of the seat.
Look at the rear left of the machine, near the tire, or back right near the chute
A walk-behind model and serial number plate is located on the rear left side of the body.
The riding mower model and serial number plate is located on the underside of the seat.
Briggs and Stratton
Briggs and Stratton engines command the majority of the engines in the market, and have for about 100 years. Since the beginning, Briggs and Stratton have always stamped their engine identification numbers on their equipment. Briggs & Stratton usually stamps the 20-digit model number on the air shroud--the part that houses the pull cord. If itís not there, itís probably on a horizontal plate located under/near the air filter. Recently, Briggs and Stratton has also attached labels directly to the engine. But, in case these fall off, they still stamp their numbers on the engine itself.
To find the model number, look for a model number sticker on the engine. All Honda engines model numbers start with the letter "G," such as "G100", "GX610", or "GXV160.
Tecumseh, the model and spec are engraved the back of the engine. Stand behind the mower-- it should be near the spark plug.
Check on the inside or sides of the flywheel cover for the engine decal. The flywheel cover is a circular metal piece that is part of the engine (same as the Briggs and Stratton). Also check the top and sides of the engine for the decal.
If your engine is neither a Briggs and Stratton, Honda, Tecumseh or Kohler, itís probably made in China (for some reason, everything else is made in Wisconsin!). Model numbers could be anywhere, but most newer models have easily-identifiable stickers on the engines.
Hopefully, this will help. But, many changes have come over the lawn and garden equipment industry lately. The notes below might help you cross-reference your equipment to some of the above brands.
Notes: (Or, ďmore than youíd ever want to know about all of thisĒ.)
Ariens and Craftsman decks/frames are made by Husqvarna in North Carolina
John Deere makes its own frames and uses Briggs or Mitsubishi engines
MTD uses either Briggs and Stratton or Honda engines
Honda builds its own engines
Toro uses Honda and Briggs engines; as of 2012 Briggs exclusively
Troy-built uses mostly Briggs on larger engines, but can be Tecumseh or Kohler on smaller products.
MTD is Modern Tool and Die, a major manufacturer of lawn and garden equipment. They own the following brands: Cub Cadet, Troy-built, MTD Pro, MTD Gold, Yardman, White, Columbia, Mastercraft, Ryobi, and Yard Pro. They also build (but do not own) Craftsman riding mowers as of 2010.
Murray mowers went out of business in 2004 and Briggs and Stratton bought them. Briggs also owns Snapper, Simplicity and others.
Sears does not build engines or equipment. They buy most of it from American Yard Products (Husqvarna), Murray (Briggs and Stratton), or MTD.
Tecumseh is out of the small gas engine manufacturing business as of Dec. 15, 2008. The engine division has been purchased by a company that says it will continue to make parts available. They may get into engine production later.