Is Your Lawn Mower String Stuck? Here’s How to Fix It!

You’re ready to tackle your overgrown lawn, but when you pull the string on your weed whacker, it just hangs limp. The dreaded lawn mower string stuck problem has struck again! Frustrating, right? Don’t worry, this article will guide you through the steps to fix this common issue and get your lawn mower back in action. We’ll cover troubleshooting, common causes, and step-by-step instructions for freeing your stuck string.

**In a nutshell, a stuck lawn mower string is usually caused by a tangle, a blockage, or a worn-out spool. Most of the time, you can fix the problem with a few simple tools and some patience. **

Identifying the Problem: Why is Your Lawn Mower String Stuck?

Before diving into solutions, it’s important to understand the root cause of your stuck string.

1. Tangles and Knots

The most common culprit is a tangle or knot in the string itself. This can happen when the string winds around the spool unevenly or when the string gets caught on something while you’re mowing.

2. Blockage in the Housing

Another reason your string might be stuck is a blockage in the housing of the weed whacker. This can be anything from grass clippings to small rocks or twigs.

3. Worn-Out Spool

If your lawn mower string has been used a lot, the spool itself could be worn out. This can make it difficult for the string to feed out properly and lead to it getting stuck.

4. Defective String

While less common, the string itself could be the problem. If the string is too thin, too thick, or too old, it can be more prone to tangling or breaking.

Troubleshooting Steps: Getting Your String Unstuck

Let’s tackle the problem systematically. Here are some steps you can take:

1. Check for Obvious Issues

  • Visual Inspection: Start by carefully inspecting your lawn mower string and housing. Look for any visible tangles, knots, or blockages. If you see anything, try to remove it gently.
  • Free the Line: If you see the string is knotted or tangled, try to gently pull it out of the housing. Be careful not to pull too hard as you might damage the spool.

2. Remove the Housing

If you can’t find the source of the problem visually, it’s time to remove the housing. This will give you better access to the spool and string.

  • Locate the Release Button: Most lawn mower heads have a release button or a lever that allows you to easily remove the housing. Refer to your user manual for the exact location of this button.
  • Release the Housing: Press or pull the release button and carefully pull the housing off the spool.

3. Inspect the Spool and String

  • Clear the Blockage: Once the housing is removed, you can inspect the spool and string. Look for any blockages or tangles. Remove any debris or loose material you find.
  • Unwind and Inspect the String: If your string is tangled, carefully unwind it, making sure to avoid any sharp edges on the spool.

4. Reload the Spool

  • Replace the String: If your string is worn out or broken, replace it with a new one. Make sure to use the correct type and diameter of string for your lawn mower.
  • Rewind the String: After replacing or untangling the string, rewind it evenly onto the spool. This will help prevent future tangles.

5. Reassemble the Housing

  • Secure the Housing: Once the spool is rewound, reattach the housing to the weed whacker. Make sure it’s properly secured before testing.

Preventing Future String Problems

Taking steps to prevent a stuck lawn mower string is key to hassle-free lawn care.

  • Use the Right String: Always use the string that’s recommended by the manufacturer of your lawn mower. Using the wrong type of string can lead to tangling, breakage, and other problems.
  • Regular Cleaning: Clean your lawn mower housing regularly to remove grass clippings, debris, and other things that can cause blockages.
  • Proper Winding: When rewinding your string, ensure it’s wound evenly around the spool. Avoid any overlaps or gaps in the string.
  • Don’t Overtighten: Avoid overtightening the string when rewinding. This can create unnecessary pressure and lead to it getting stuck.
  • Maintain Your Lawn Mower: Regularly check your lawn mower for signs of wear and tear. This includes the spool, the string, and the housing. Replacing worn-out parts can prevent future problems.

Other Common Issues and Solutions

Here are some additional problems you might encounter with your lawn mower string and how to address them:

1. String Won’t Feed

If your string won’t feed out, even after you’ve cleared any blockages, the problem could be with the feed mechanism. This is the part of the lawn mower head that controls how the string is dispensed.

  • Inspect the Feed Mechanism: Check the feed mechanism for any debris, dirt, or damage.
  • Clean and Lubricate: Clean the feed mechanism with a small brush and some WD-40 or other light lubricant.

2. String Breaks Frequently

If your string keeps breaking, there are a few potential causes:

  • Incorrect String: Make sure you are using the right type and diameter of string for your lawn mower.
  • Worn-Out Spool: A worn-out spool can cause the string to break.
  • Sharp Debris: If you’re mowing through a lot of debris, it can wear down the string and cause it to break.

3. String Gets Caught on the Housing

If your string keeps getting caught on the housing, it could be because the housing is not properly aligned. Check the alignment of the housing and make sure it is securely attached.

4. String Spins Too Fast

If your string spins too fast, it can cause it to break or tangle. This could be a problem with the motor or the speed control mechanism.

  • Check the Motor: Make sure the motor is running properly.
  • Adjust the Speed: If your lawn mower has a speed control, adjust it to a slower setting.

When to Seek Professional Help

Most lawn mower string issues can be fixed with simple troubleshooting and a little DIY know-how. However, there are situations where it’s best to call a professional:

  • Severe Damage: If the spool, housing, or other parts of your lawn mower head are severely damaged, it’s best to leave the repair to a professional.
  • Electrical Issues: If you suspect a problem with the motor or the electrical system, call a professional electrician for repairs.
  • No DIY Experience: If you’re not comfortable working with tools or you’re unsure about the cause of the problem, it’s best to seek professional help.


A stuck lawn mower string can be frustrating, but with a little patience and understanding, you can usually fix the problem yourself. By following the troubleshooting steps and preventive measures outlined in this article, you can keep your lawn mower string running smoothly and your lawn looking its best!


1. What is the most common reason why lawnmower string gets stuck?

The most frequent culprit for a stuck lawnmower string is the string itself. When the string becomes worn, frayed, or tangled, it can get caught in the spool or the housing, hindering its smooth movement. Another common issue is a buildup of debris, such as grass clippings, dirt, or leaves, in the housing or around the spool. This accumulated debris can impede the string’s ability to feed out properly.

It is important to note that excessive string length can also contribute to the issue. If the string is extended beyond the recommended length, it might be hitting the housing or the cutting deck, causing friction and entanglement.

2. How do I know if my lawnmower string is stuck?

Several signs can indicate that your lawnmower string is stuck. Firstly, you might notice that the mower is not cutting properly, leaving behind patches of uncut grass. Secondly, you might hear a grinding or scraping sound as you try to mow. Thirdly, you may observe that the string is not feeding out as it should, or it’s coming out in uneven lengths. Finally, if you can see the string itself, you might observe that it is tangled or frayed.

If you experience any of these signs, it’s highly likely that your lawnmower string is stuck, and you should address the issue promptly to prevent further damage to your mower and ensure a clean cut.

3. How can I prevent my lawnmower string from getting stuck?

Preventing your lawnmower string from getting stuck is crucial for maintaining smooth and efficient mowing. The first step is to ensure that you use the correct type and length of string for your mower. Oversized or inappropriate string can lead to tangling and clogging. Regularly cleaning the housing and spool of any debris buildup is also essential.

Furthermore, it’s good practice to inspect the string for wear and tear before each mowing session. Replace it as needed to avoid issues caused by fraying or breakage. Lastly, avoid mowing over thick clumps of grass, as these can easily clog the housing and impede the string’s movement.

4. What are some tools I need to fix a stuck lawnmower string?

To fix a stuck lawnmower string, you’ll need a few basic tools. You’ll need a screwdriver to access the housing and spool, as well as a pair of pliers or wire cutters to trim the string. A cleaning brush can also be helpful for removing debris from the housing. If you’re replacing the string, you’ll also need a new spool of string that’s compatible with your lawnmower.

With these tools at hand, you can effectively tackle the issue and restore the smooth operation of your lawnmower.

5. What is the easiest way to fix a stuck lawnmower string?

The easiest way to fix a stuck lawnmower string often involves a simple cleaning. First, disconnect the mower from its power source and remove the string housing. Next, remove any debris, such as grass clippings or leaves, from the housing and spool using a brush or vacuum cleaner. Then, inspect the string for tangles or breakage and untangle or replace it as needed.

Finally, reassemble the housing and test the string’s functionality. If the problem persists, you might need to look into more complex issues, such as a damaged spool or a faulty string feed mechanism.

6. What do I do if I can’t fix the stuck string myself?

If you are unable to fix the stuck lawnmower string yourself after attempting the aforementioned solutions, you can consider taking it to a repair shop. A professional technician can assess the issue and make any necessary repairs, such as replacing the spool or fixing the string feed mechanism. This option ensures that your mower is properly repaired and can be used safely and effectively.

However, before taking your lawnmower to a shop, make sure to check the user manual or contact the manufacturer for instructions and troubleshooting tips.

7. How often should I replace the string on my lawnmower?

Replacing the string on your lawnmower depends on how frequently you use it and the type of string you use. As a general guideline, you should replace the string every 1-2 months, or whenever you notice signs of wear or breakage, such as fraying or thinning.

Remember that using the correct type of string for your mower is essential for optimal performance and longevity. Refer to your mower’s manual for recommendations and specifications.

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