How to Choose a New Lawn MowerMaddy Scheinost
READ THIS Before You Buy a New Lawn Mower!
How hard could it be to buy a new lawn mower, right? There can’t be that many options to choose from…push, ride, manual, gas or electric, correct? You just go to your favorite hardware store, pick out a mower—maybe the newest and the best with all the latest bells and whistles—plunk down some cash and get ready to do battle with your lawn. Easy. And if you hate the lawn mower you choose, no big deal, just return it and get another model. Right? Because hardware stores love getting back slightly used lawn mowers. Don’t they?
Wrong, wrong, wrong. In fact, choosing the best lawn mower for you and your yard can be complicated. Getting a new lawn mower is kind of like marriage. You’re better off taking your time and getting it right because really don’t want to do it more than once. At least not more than once a decade. Fortunately for you, the tire experts at Treadworld know everything there is to know about every type of lawn mower—from push reel mowers to robot mowers—EVERYTHING. And they’re here to share.
What You Need to Know About Choosing the Best Lawn Mower for You
OK, so the first rule as you may suspect by now is—don’t be impulsive. Do your research. You’re in the right place for that.
There really are a lot of types of lawn mowers to choose from. A lot. Push mowers, push mowers with bagger, riding lawn mowers, lawn tractors, riding mowers with bagger, electric mowers, electric mowers with cords, electric riding mowers, cordless lawn mowers, self-propelled lawn mowers, zero turn lawn mowers, electric zero turn mowers, mulching mowers, side discharge lawn mowers, robotic lawn mowers—ARGHH!
Let’s break it down. The factors you should consider when you’re trying to figure out how to select the best lawn mower are: yard size, terrain, your physical condition, power supply and how you want to handle the clippings. OK?
This isn’t brain surgery. If you have a smaller yard, say up to 1/4 of an acre, you will be well-served by a push mower, manual, gas, battery or electric. If you have a bigger yard, more than 1/4 of an acre but less than ¾ of an acre, you’ll be better off with a self-propelled mower, gas or electric. You’ll likely want to use a small riding lawn mower for yards that are more than ¾ of an acre. And if you have a HUGE yard, you’ll want either a riding mower, the best lawn tractor you can find, or a garden tractor. And finally, if you have a need for speed, or have a yard that requires quite a bit of maneuvering due to trees and shrubs for instance , you may decide on a zero turn mower. We’ll cover the best robot lawn mowers in a bit, because that involves a whole different set of circumstances.
The lawn mower that will make you happiest and make mowing your lawn less of a chore is one that is right for the terrain of your yard. Again, not rocket science. If you have a small, flat yard, a push mower should be fine, perhaps even an electric lawn mower—but don’t run over the cord! If your yard is sloped or requires navigating a lot of slopes, you’ll want to consider the best self-propelled lawn mower you can find, with easy-to-use controls, and a transmission that powers the drive wheels to make mowing essentially effortless. If your lawn is populated with decorative items, flower beds, rock formations, fountains and the like, you’ll want to consider going with one of the zero turn mowers that get their name from the fact that they have a turning radius of zero. A zero turn can literally turn around within its own footprint, which makes it perfect for getting into tight spaces, and close to obstacles.
Your Physical Condition
No one’s watching and you’ve got nothing to prove, so let’s be real here: mowing your lawn can be a workout that requires some measure of strength and stamina. If you have physical challenges, or just aren’t in the best shape, the best residential lawn mower for you may very well be one that is self-propelled or a riding mower. Or, you should have had more kids since mowing the yard can be something of a rite of passage.
How You Want to Handle the Grass Cuttings
You have three choices: get a bag lawn mower equipped with a system that picks up the cut grass so you can bag it and send it to the landfill; return the grass clippings to the yard to serve as fertilizer with a side discharge mower; or use a mulching lawn mower with special mulching blades to cut the grass into smaller pieces and return them to the yard. Some mowers give you a combination of these abilities.
Bagging your grass is more expensive in terms of your time, and also in terms of your money—since bags aren’t free and there can be costs associated with getting grass clippings to the landfill, but on the other hand, your lawn will look clean and manicured. When you return grass cuttings to the lawn, it may initially look a little more unkempt, but the clippings will decompose quickly and serve as organic fertilizer, help retain moisture and serve as a natural weed killer by providing a natural barrier to weed seeds. Plus, you may get a further cost savings related to requiring less fertilizer.
It’s All About Power
You can’t choose a new lawn mower without knowing how you’re going to power it. If old school methods appeal to you, and you have a small, basically flat yard, you can go with a people-powered reel mower or rotary lawn mower. Other options include an electric-powered mower, a cordless battery-powered mower or a gas-powered mower. Gas mowers tend to provide more power than electric, battery or manual, but those three are significantly quieter, if that’s a factor in your decision. Depending on the model you get, battery-powered mowers will last 45 minutes to an hour, which may not be long enough to finish the job on a single charge—something you won’t have to worry about with gas mowers. Electric mowers with a cord? Well, that’s up to you, but for many, keeping the cord away of the blades is a bigger chore than mowing the lawn.
Obviously, the terrain of your yard factors into the decision you make regarding your power of choice. You don’t want to be pushing a manual mower up steep hills.
These battery-powered mowers mow your lawn automatically, functioning in much the same way robot vacuum cleaners keep carpets clean. They are wonderful for the ideal situation, like a large lawn that is largely flat, but they aren’t that versatile so using them multiple areas can be a problem, and they aren’t good for yards with steep slopes. Robotic mowers cut in random patterns so they don’t do the stripes that to some people is a sign of a well-mowed yard. You don’t need a battery because they return to the charging station as needed. They tend to get stuck in holes or on obstacles, but they’re designed to trim the blades of grass in your lawn a little each time, which leads to healthier growth. They’re quieter than gas-powered mowers, and they typically take up less space than a standard mower when they’re not in use.
Whichever Mower Style You Choose, We’ve Got the Replacement Lawn Mower Tires You Need!
You can count on us here at Treadworld to provide you with the dependable, high performance RubberMaster Lawn Care Tires you want. Lawn and garden tires, mower tires, lawn tractor tires, riding mower tires—you’ll find them all right here. We also provide many other lawn care tire styles to fit your needs, including lug tires, turf tires, smooth tires and rib tires. All of our tires offer the finest in top quality, long-lasting, never-let-you-down reliability, manufactured with strict tolerances from top rubber compounds, triple-tested for quality before being X-rayed to be sure they’re perfect, then covered by our Ultimate Advantage Lifetime Warranty. Don’t hesitate to contact our tire experts via live chat or email with any questions or for help finding the perfect lawn and garden tires—or the perfect ATV tires, UTV tires, trailer tires, and many others—from our large selection.