An American lawnmower is a tough machine. They are often asked a lot and neglected. They don’t stop working, from the Best Lawn Tractor Black Friday Deals 2021 first signs of spring green to the full bloom in late spring or early summer to the long, hot-and-humid mowing sessions in summer’s peak to finally mowing the lawn covered in leaves in fall. It’s a hard, long season. It is important to choose a mower with care. We’ve compiled a list of the top mowers from our testing. Also, some tips and tricks to help you choose the right machine. Happy lawnmowing.
Mower SelectionA mower should leave a lawn that looks like velvet. Today’s mowers are capable of doing this. However, not all mowers are suited for every yard and every owner. Some mowers are designed to provide specific benefits. While battery mowers are quieter and more efficient than gas-engine counterparts they can also handle tough conditions like tall grass or thick grass. Deck design and blade configuration have an impact on bagging ability. Some self-propelled mowers can be so fast that you will need to walk to keep up. Rear-wheel or front-wheel drive is important. Front-drive mowers excel at maneuverability, but lose traction uphill. Rear-drive mowers, on the other hand, are less maneuverable, but can cut as fast uphill as flat surfaces. Consider what you are looking for and then shop accordingly.Scroll down for more information about mower health and how to choose the right mower for you.
What We TestFrom decades of mower testing, we have learned one thing: To get an accurate idea of a mower’s value, you need to cut lots of grass and mow under many conditions. We do tests uphill, downhill, sidehill, and on flats. We mow areas that are pristine and have been planted with fine fescue and bluegrass, as well the wall of a retention tank that is covered in weeds. We bag, side-discharge, and mulch. This takes into account handle comfort, ease of raising and lowering the deck, as well as how easy it is to mount and dismount the grass bag. All aspects are thoroughly analyzed, including power and cut quality. We also check if the tires are prone to picking up grass clippings. It is a tedious, exhausting task. It’s also the best way to test a mower.
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Our testing for this spring is ongoing, even as this article is being written. The mowers are coming in, the sun shines, and the grass grows. What’s not great about this? Three new Editors’ Choice mowers were also tested during our testing (a Ryobi Toro and an EGO). We hope that our testing of the mowers shows you how to maintain a tidy yard. The 140-cc Briggs & Stratton engine is sufficient to power this mower. This mower’s small engine is what makes it light and maneuverable. It’s fun to mow with it, which is not something you would normally associate with outdoor chores. The TB115 mulched and bagged normal-height grass remarkably well and, with the side-discharge chute in its place, did a great job in tall-grass testing. Although it doesn’t have the same power as a 190-cc mower we don’t think it needs, you don’t necessarily need more. This is the best choice for small yards and a mower that can be used to cut complex landscapes before you pair it with a rider.
Comparison of Electric and Gas-PoweredFor small to medium yards, battery mowers work best. They need to be well maintained and have a surface area of 5,000 to 10,000 feet. A gas-engine mower is better for larger areas, especially if there are leaves on the lawn in fall. A gas mower is also a good choice if you are looking to cut tough grass or weeds. Gas engines are well-suited for this task.The Mower Types and the Yard Sizes They’re Best forSelf-propelled and walkable (10,000 feet or less of grass): Engines up to 190cc (with some larger), deck width from 21 to 3 inches. If you are mowing uphill, you should choose rear drive. Front drive is best for level ground. For steep hills, side hills and rutted ground, you can buy all-wheel drive (or power-reverse) or purchase an all-wheel drive. If your cutting surface is smaller than the one we have described, or if you want to save money and mechanical simplicity, a mower without any drive (also known as a push mower).
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Rear-engine riding (10,000 sq. ft. grass, up to 2 acres; heavy-duty variants up to 4 acres): The range of typical engine sizes is 10.5 to 13.5 horsepower (hp), although some models can reach up to 21.5 HP. The deck size is typically between 30 and 33 inches. Heavy-duty models can have decks as high as 54 inches. Although they allow for faster mowing, wider decks are more costly. There aren’t nearly as many electric riding mowers available as there are gas-engine models. There are only a few products that you can choose from, including the Cub Cadet CC30E, Turf One and Ryobi’s RY48111.
Traditional lawn tractor: Up to 20,000 sq. ft. of grass, up to 4 acres. The engine size ranges from 10.5 to 25 horsepower. The deck sizes vary from 42 inches to 54 inches. Heavy-duty lawn tractors have features such as a differential lock, which allows both the rear and front wheels to turn simultaneously. This is useful for pulling attachments like a grader or going uphill. The XT1 Enduro is the only battery-powered tractor we know. It looks like a gas engine machine. However, it is powered by 56-volt motors and lithium ion batteries.
Zero-turn riding (20,000 feet of grass, up to four acres): The engine size ranges from 12 to 25 horsepower. The deck sizes range from 32 inches to 60 inches. These machines are controlled by two lap bars, one at each end of the rear wheel. The fluid flow from the transmission is increased by moving a bar forward; it decreases when it moves back. This allows the mower to turn in a circle, move in a straight line, or pivot. One of the fastest-growing mower categories is battery-powered zero-turn mowers. They are expensive but they offer quiet, high-capacity mowing. These machines can cut more than one acre. Ryobi’s RY48140 and Ego’s Z6 are two examples of cutting-edge mowers.
Do you want to bang, mulch, or side discharge?
Nearly all walk-behind mowers today bag and mulch. Some mowers also have side discharge. A mower that has a strong mulching performance is the best choice for homeowners. Mulching refers to the process of recutting clippings and dumping them under the deck. Mulching is a process where clippings are recut repeatedly and disposed under the deck. This improves grass health. Mulching does not require that you dump clippings elsewhere and compost them. Bagging clippings, on the other hand leaves a clean lawn surface that is less likely to be trampled onto your shoes. Side-discharge mowers will shoot clippings to the sides of the deck. Best Lawn Tractor Black Friday Deals 2021 This is best for tall grass and areas that don’t require mowing. The clippings can cause rows of ugly streaks in the lawn.