You need to visually check the air filter on your own to be able to tell if it needs a new one or can still be clean.
The very first thing that must be done is to make sure that the air filter is not doing any restrictions and chocking the engine.
Loosen the wing nut that holds the air filter in place then start the engine, put it on high throttle then try to push the air filter on which it use to seat then release the pushing pressure, do this a few times and see how the engine respond as the air filter is being held on and off.
Although the service manual indicates that it needs to be replaced on a specific time there are still a lot of factors to be considered like the environment where you used the lawn mower, the way the lawn mower being use and the condition of the machine.
Most Air filters compose of a pre-filter which is a foam-like filter and the main filter, remove the foam filter and visually check it, if the color is darker than what it should be or if it’s obviously clogged the best thing to do is to use a pressured air to blow off the dirt or wash the foam using a clean petrol and blow it dry.
The main filter can be check by looking at it from the inside and see if the light from behind is coming in, if not try to blow it with air if it doesn’t work then replace the air filter.
Is it Possible to clean the main filter of a lawn mower with petrol
Don’t even try to clean the main air filter with petrol, if the paper element gets wet it will cause more trouble, it will chock the engine resulting in lack of power and hard to start.
Even if the filter element gets wet with rainwater and you dry it, it is still not advisable to reused it because the paper element already loses its property to filter air on a certain micron.
is it necessary to oil the primary filter of foam filter
It is not necessary to oil the foam filter but there is also no problem if you want to oil foam, just don’t put too much that you can see it the oil leaking.
Even if there is oil in the foam filter it can still function perfectly because the foam filters job is to filter larger microns of dirt on the air, the foam particles are not to tight from each other allowing air to pass through easily even with oil.
Actually, a brand new Honda motor comes with an air filter with oil on the foam, but when you purchase an OEM Honda air filter for your next service you will notice that the foam on that filter is not oil anymore,
is it ok to use replacement air filters
It’s ok to use replacement parts especially air filters, these companies who make replacements parts or products allow everyone to have an option not just in the price and brand but also in availability.
Most of the time genuine OEM parts run’s out of stock so thanks to these companies who make replacements parts we can still find what we are looking only on a different brand.
Just keep in mind that there are so many companies out there who make replacements parts and still it varies in prices to tell which one is much better than the rest.
The idea is the higher the price the better the part should be, but still don’t forget the credibility of the brand, which one should me trust.