My Toro walk-behind lawnmower is around 3years old, and I'm guilty of not having done any sort of maintenance to it. Never an oil change, never anything other than fill it and mow. I do drain fuel at the end of mowing season, so that's one good thing, I suppose.
Last week, I had the lawnmower running fine for around a minute, and mowing grass reasonably well, when it suddenly slowed down (as if the engine was under extreme stress) and stopped. Slowing down and stopping must have taken around 15seconds or so, as far as I can tell.
I tipped it over to the side, and tried cleaning under the deck. Three years' worth of packed grass was removed (nothing really interfered with the blade, though), and I righted the machine back up.
From that point on, the pull cord is stuck. It pulls out maybe 4" or so, and then there's extreme resistance to any sort of further movement. There's no hard stop; just no movement at all. This happens regardless of whether the spark plug is installed or not.
I reviewed the engine oil situation; there's enough, but it's a sick gray-black color, and certainly smells like burnt oil. I'm assuming that's not good.
It looks like the engine is seized, though I hope that's not the case. I can turn the mower over and manually turn the blade, but that takes a whole lot of effort, and there's some sort of swishing (grinding?) noise behind the spark plug opening when I do this.
Is my engine beyond redemption? Is this something that I can fix myself (or get somebody to fix), or should I just go out and buy another (and maintain it better going forward)?