Can I Keep a Treadmill Outside? (Yes! Just Follow These 6 Tips)

Foot Strike on Treadmill

While some manufactures do not recommend keeping their treadmill products outdoors, it is actually quite easy to do so safely. Whether you’re a runner who wants to practice for your races or working on your cardio to lose weight, running on a treadmill outside can be refreshing and exciting.

You can keep your treadmill outside if you keep it safe in a covered area on a level surface, keep the area clean, invest in a treadmill cover, and maintain the lubrication of your treadmill belt. 

With our 6 simple tips for keeping a treadmill outside, you will be able to work towards keeping it working well for years to come.

1. Find a Spot with an Awning

The first step in figuring out whether you can keep your existing or newly purchased treadmill outside depends on your outdoor space. The best thing to do is designate an outdoor space that has an awning.

An awning is necessary for having an outdoor treadmill because it guarantees safety from rain, snow, and other inclement weather throughout the year. 

Since treadmills are very susceptible to attracting and holding in moisture, they often experience electrical damage upon the first twin of the year if kept outside under an open sky. 

An awning is also great for protecting your treadmill from the sun. If a treadmill of any age receives too much sun, it is at risk for one or multiple of the following things to happen:

  • Cracking: Excess heat can cause parts of the treadmill to crack and fall away, rendering it useless.
  • Melting: If your treadmill gets too much sun, it can easily overheat and crucial electronic and manual parts may begin to melt away. 
  • Sun bleaching: The treadmill will gain light spots that cannot be removed and threaten the integrity of its materials.

Whether you have a concrete patio with a large carport awning or a backyard deck with a hand-built awning made of natural materials, keeping your treadmill under it will allow you to leave it outside.

Woman Running On An Outdoor Treadmill

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2. Pick a Level Surface

Another important factor to consider for anyone who wants to keep their treadmill outside is whether you have a level surface to put it on. 

Keeping your treadmill on a level surface free of rocks, grass, foliage, and other debris is important for the two following reasons:

  • Treadmill longevity: If your treadmill is placed on an uneven surface or rocky ground, it is likely to tip back and forth, especially when being used. Being placed on a flat surface prevents long-term belt damage.
  • Safety: By putting your treadmill on a flat area you are ensuring that it will not tip over dangerously and fall on you while being used.

If you don’t already have a level area outside in which to keep your treadmill, you can create one by embarking on a DIY ground leveling and concrete pouring project or hire a local contracting and landscaping company to create a stable and level spot for you.

3. Clean the Area Consistently

You can also keep your hammock outside if you clean the area around it consistently. If your treadmill is kept outside, it is highly likely to gather dust and become gunked up with pollen and other plant materials.

Cleaning your treadmill with non-toxic dish soap or a rag with clean water is enough to remove any debris that may attach itself to the outside of your treadmill. 

If any dry leaves fall from nearby during the Autumn season, make sure to keep them away from the treadmill belt and dispose of them right away. You can also use a screwdriver or another long tool or stick to take out any grime left in your treadmill’s crevices, corners, or belt entry points.

4. Invest in a Treadmill Cover

Buying a treadmill cover is the best way to keep your treadmill safe outside. A good treadmill cover should offer the following features:

  • UV protection
  • Mildew resistance and waterproof materials
  • Secure zipper with Velcro zipper latch
  • Drawstring bottom

If you want to store your treadmill somewhere very particular, you can often have a treadmill cover company make you a custom cover. These customs can have locking capacities to prevent theft.

5. Lubricate Your Treadmill Belt Occasionally

Our last tip for keeping your treadmill outside is to occasionally lubricate your treadmill belt. This is especially meaningful for those that live in dry Southwestern regions populated with summer storms, dusty areas, and extra hot climates with low humidity. 

» Related: Can you over lubricate a treadmill belt? (Yes, here are some tips!)

The process of lubricating your outdoor treadmill belt might sound complex at first, but can easily be accomplished by doing the following:

  • Get a silicon-based treadmill lubricator, avoiding oil or grease of any kind
  • Unplug the treadmill, loosen its belt, and spray lubricant underneath
  • Reattach the belt and run the machine for 6 minutes at 3 miles per hour

After lubricating your treadmill belt, your treadmill will be easily ready to withstand the next two to three months outdoors.

If you are ever using your treadmill outside and feel that it is bumpy or hear a grinding sound while you run, stop using it immediately and clean before lubricating its belt as soon as possible. This could be a sign that some debris is stuck in the belt and can ruin the belt if not removed and taken care of properly.

6. Outdoor Treadmill Running

For outdoor fanatics, race trainers, or anyone who wants to spend more time outside while working out, using your treadmill outdoors can be a great idea. Whether you plan to use it consistently or only store it to make more room inside, doing so properly will keep it safe and working well. 

By putting it in a covered area on a level surface, keeping the area clean, investing in a treadmill cover, and maintaining the lubrication of your treadmill belt, you can responsibly keep your treadmill outside.

Wrapping Up

While it is possible to keep a treadmill outside, it’s generally not recommended due to the potential damage from weather and the increased maintenance required. But with the help from the tips in this article, you can keep your treadmill outside.

It’s important to find a covered area to protect it from rain and direct sunlight, and to regularly check and maintain the equipment to ensure it is in good working condition. Furthermore, you should consider the potential noise and disturbance to neighbors when using the treadmill outside. Ultimately though, the best location for a treadmill is in a dedicated indoor space such as a home gym or basement, where it can be used safely and comfortably year-round.

Team HTF

We are the team at High Tech Fitness and have a love for educating and sharing our insights on all things tech and fitness with you.

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