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May 252016

assess-commercial-mower-valueFinding the value of your Wright commercial mower can be difficult, but with a little research and a few pointers, you can make an informed estimate. It’s important to realize that interested buyers are the ones who ultimately determine mower value. So when making an asking price, it’s good to put yourself into the shoes of a prospective buyer. The condition of the mower will have a lot of impact on what it’s worth.

Things buyers will look for:

  • Does the engine start and run? A prospective buyer will likely want to test drive the mower.
  • Are all the safety labels and guards in place? This is something a buyer will consider to be a cost unless he or she has other decommissioned mowers to pull parts from.
  • Are all the tires in good shape?
  • Are the mower blades sharp and in good condition?
  • Is the transmission running strong? Any sluggishness, cogging, loss of power, or whining will tell a savvy buyer that there might be a $1000+ repair down the road.
  • Do you have oil change records? This can give a buyer more confidence that the engine and hydros will last a long time.
  • Do any of the bearings in the spindles or idler pulleys make a roaring noise? Although a lot less costly to repair than a transmission, it will still be a $50-$500 cost.
  • Are the valves tapping? There will be a ticking noise from the valve covers (best heard when the engine is at idle) if this is the case. Although this is not a direct indicator of the condition of the engine, have your valves adjusted if they are tapping.

Things you can do to increase mower value:

  • Clean the mower well using a good degreaser. Avoid directly spraying water into the pulleys and spindles.
  • Buy a can of OEM match spray paint and touch up any scratched parts of the mower.
  • Replace any missing decals or guards.
  • Apply some type of upholstery protectant to the pad, seat and instrument panel. If you really want to go the extra mile, apply a tire protectant.

How to evaluate the condition of your mower:

  • With commercial mowing equipment, the hours are what mostly depreciate the value. The mower will lose a little value year over year. Check when it was built by going to our Mower Parts Pick List and entering your serial number. If a second generation of your mower exists, the older generation will bring in less value.
  • Does your mower include a sulky or grass catcher? Is the engine more desirable than the average engine for that model? These extra features will make it stand out.
  • Was either the transmission or engine replaced? If so, do you have records or receipts?

With these factors in mind, you can now research what else is on the market. Where you plan to sell it is where you need to look for comps, whether you decide to post on local postings, Facebook, Craigslist, ebay, or trade-in. A private party sale might get you the best money but you may also get a lot of scammers and “tire kickers,” whereas taking a dealer trade-in offer is often easy and secure. Also, keep in mind that selling used mowers is seasonal. Expect lower prices near the end of the mowing season.

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