Types of Lawn Mowers

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Lawn mowers are an important tool for lawn care and yard maintenance. 

If you want to maintain a beautiful and tidy lawn or you just want to prevent it from becoming an overgrown wild meadow, you may need to put some things into consideration before making a purchase.

This article talks about the different types of mowers and the one that will be well suited for your lawn, budget, and other varying needs. 

So, you are going to learn about the best lawn mowers for different lawn sizes and their mowing capacity.

Ready? Let’s dive right into it:

Different Types of Lawn Mowers

Ride-On Mowers

Ride-on mowers make mowing easy and significantly reduce the time it takes to mow the grass.  They will offer you an enjoyable and nice mowing experience. They are best suited for large lawns.

In terms of reliability and efficiency, ride-on mowers are better than walk-behind mowers. There are different ride-on mowers to pick from.  They can be classified into three categories namely:

Rear Engine Riding Mowers

Rear engine riding mowers are ideal for moderately-sized lawns that may be too small for lawn tractors, but too large to use for a walk mower. 

These mowing machines hold their engine at the rear of the mower, beneath the driving seat. The cutting deck is also located below the driver’s position.

Rear engine riding mowers are controlled with a shift-on-the-go hand lever that operates the continuously variable transmission. 

It has singular-cylinder engines which range from 344cc to 38cc and a horsepower that is estimated to be between 10 HP -11 HP.

These ride-on mowers come with a variety of deck sizes that are between 30 to 33 inches, making them perfect for lawns that are less than 2.5 acres. 

If you have lawns that are larger than three acres, it is advisable to go for a zero-turn mower or lawn tractor.

Zero Turn Mowers

Zero-turn mowing machines are controlled by lap bars which operate the dual hydrostatic transmissions at the rear wheels. 

Zero-turn mowers provide superior maneuverability than other mowers in their category.

A zero-turn mower can also make sharp turns, pivot, and provide exceptional all-around grass-cutting performance. 

They can mow through obstacles better than other ride-on lawn mowers. They have enough capacity to mow tightly against landscaped edges for a superb finish on lawns.

Their ability to steer properly ensures an exceptional mowing performance, most especially on lawns that have irregular shapes. 

They are the easiest of all mowers with their capacity to mow grass within a short time.

The deck sizes of zero-turn machines range between 32-61 inches and they have an estimated horsepower that are between 12HP-25 HP, with their engine series from 452cc to 700cc. 

The price of zero-turn mowers depends on the specification and model, but you can get one within the range of $1000-$6000. You can find out more about the Best Zero Turn Mowers and how to choose the right one for your mowing needs.

Learn more about Best Zero Turn Mowers

Lawn Tractors

Lawn tractors are suitable for large lawns, with a deck size that ranges from 42-54 inches. The horsepower of lawn tractors is between 18 HP to 25 HP. 

Their entry-level models come with a single cylinder and some expensive models feature twin cylinders.

Basic lawn tractors are equipped with lever-operated gear transmissions while upgraded models may have continuously variable transmission.

If you have a large budget, you can also go for lawn tractors that have a hydrostatic pedal transmission. 

The cost of lawn tractors is between $1000-$3000. They are reasonably priced compared to their riding mower counterparts.

Lawn tractors are not without drawbacks. They have limited maneuverability and do not tackle obstacles well. 

Due to its inability to get tight to an obstacle or edge, the patches of the grass always remain cut.

Walk Mowers

Walk mowers are ideal for smaller lawns that are up to 0.5 acres in size. vary in terms of quality, price, and other numerous features. In this lawn mowing machines reviews, you’ll find different mower brands, mower types, and an overview of how they work.

Walk mowers can be classified into the following groups:

Cylinder Mower

Cylinder mowers or reel mowers come with vertically cylindrical blades at the front of the mower which slice against a fixed blade. 

The number of vertical blades is from 3-12. The one with the highest number of blades enhances more accurate cuts on lawns.

They are perfect for flat lawns but they don’t perform well on uneven grounds. Cylinder mowers are ideal for soft grass but they struggle on coarse and long grass. 

If you intend to get a reel mower, then you need to mow your grass regularly because it won’t cut it well if the grass is overgrown.

Learn more about Best Reel Mowers

Rotary Mower

Rotary mowers come with a single blade that rotates at a very high speed in a horizontal motion. 

They are an excellent option for medium and long grass. The cut you get from these machines are less accurate compared to cylinder machines.

Due to the high speed of rotation, these mowers tend to bash and thrash the blades of grass around by slicing them on impact, resulting in a less precise and uneven cut.

Push Mower

This mower requires that you manually force the machine across the lawn. They are lightweight, inexpensive, and simple to use. 

In addition, they offer better maneuverability, allowing you to easily direct the machine to where it goes and push them around corners and obstacles.

These mowers require some physical strength, which may be okay for you if you desire to add some extra workouts into your plan. 

They are labor-intensive and not the best for individuals with health issues.

Push mowers are best suited for level lawns. In addition, they are laborious to push on hills. They are ideal for small yards.

Self-Propelled Mower

Self-propelled mowers have a transmission that propels the mower to move forward.  You do not need to push it and it requires that you guide it. 

Self-propelled mowers enhance a quick and easy mowing operation.

The best self-propelled lawn mowers do not require manpower and are easy to mow with. They offer more consistent cuts on lawns. Self-propelled lawn mowers are also easy to operate. 

However, they require high maintenance and are pricier than push mowers.

Learn more about Best Self Propelled Lawn Mowers

Hover Mower

A hover mower works by creating a cushion of air between the mower and grass, allowing the operator to move the machine in any direction. 

Hover mowers are easy to guide on the lawn. They are perfect on lawns that have awkward shapes and can also maneuver well around trees, planters, and other garden features.

They are best suited for small lawns and are fairly inexpensive. One of the drawbacks of the mower is its lack of power to mow large lawns.

Robot Mowers

These autonomous machines have enough capacity to mow up to 320,000 sq ft of grass.  Powered by rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, they are guided by a boundary cable which enables them to identify where to mow.

Some models use a sophisticated GPS that enables you to program specific paths. They are quiet and eco-friendly. Before choosing your next mower, our Best Robot Lawn Mowers piece will provide every important piece of information you need to make the right decision.

They are not without flaws. Robot mowers do not achieve stripes and they can only cut grass in the designated area. Some models can also struggle with narrow passages, steep slopes, and uneven terrain.

Learn More about Best Robot Lawn Mowers

Stand-On Mowers

Stand-on mowing machines come in sizes and power levels similar to riding mowing machines but they do not have a seat. Instead, there is a small foot platform at the back of the mowing machine.

They are perfect on uneven terrain because the user can easily shift their body weight from side to side. Furthermore, they can maneuver well in tight spaces.

They offer greater power, speed and a wider mower deck than walk-behind mowers. They also have some drawbacks. They have a slower ground speed and they require the user to stand throughout the mowing process. 

Drive Types

The drive of your mowing machine is an essential factor that can make an impact on mower performance, depending on your terrain. 

Lawn mowers can be either front-wheel drive (FWD), rear-wheel drive (RWD) or all-wheel drive with each having pros and cons.

Front-Wheel Drive

FWD lawn mowers are propelled by the front wheels, which pull the mower along with their turning motion. 

They work well on level lawns that do not feature hills or slopes but they do not operate well on inclines. 

They are easy to steer and can maneuver well on obstacles or irregularly shaped lawns.

Rear Wheel Drive

These machines are pushed forward by the motion of the back wheels. Rear Wheel Drive mowers perform well in wide-open spaces. 

RWD mowers are suitable for steady or rough terrain because they have enough capacity to push forward across steep inclines or bumps.

They may struggle in small or awkwardly shaped gardens. They might also find it difficult to turn and reverse.

All Wheel Drive

These mowers have all four wheels connected to their power source and they are propelled equally. 

This means that they move together in unison. The main pros of all-wheel drive mowers are their power and speed, though they lack the maneuverability of front-wheel drive mowers.

Power Types

When it comes to power types,  there are options to choose from:

Manual-Powered Mower

The source of momentum for manual-powered mowers is muscle power. They are mostly push lawn mowers. Although some may have engines, they only operate on the blades.

They are quiet, inexpensive, and environmentally friendly. They require a great amount of strength to operate, making them the hardest to use. Manual-powered mowers are ideal for small lawns.

Electric Powered Mower

Electric corded mowers are powered by a cord plugged into an electrical outlet. They are perfect for small and medium-sized yards. 

Top rated electric lawn mowers are lightweight, making them easy to maneuver on lawns. Corded mowers are also smaller than gas-powered mowers. This makes them easy to store in your garage/shed.

They do not run out of gas and do not need to be charged like battery lawn mowers. You can run these mowers as you like as long as there is electricity. The price of corded mowers is between $100-$250. If you are on a shoestring budget and would like to get an efficient machine, you can get the Best Corded Electric Lawn Mowers here and make a selection that works for you.

Learn more about Best Corded Electric Lawn Mowers

One of the drawbacks of electric mowers is that they are tethered to an electrical outlet. Another issue is the cable that trails behind you when you mow. 

With this, you need to be careful not to allow your mower blades to come in contact with the cable. Many people see corded electric mowers as too restrictive.

Gas-Powered Mowers

These mowers come with engines that are powered by gas. They are best suited for mowing large lawn areas where electric corded mowing machines can’t get to. 

Gas mowers offer more power to easily mow through thick, dense or tall grass. They can maneuver around obstacles. 

There are a few downsides to gas-powered lawn mowers. Cheap gas mowers under $200 will work but they need to be regularly serviced or maintained for continued use. 

They are also noisy and expensive. Their prices range between $200 and $800.

Learn More about Best Gas Lawn Mowers

Battery-Powered Mowers/Cordless Electric Lawn Mowers

Battery powered mowers also known as cordless electric lawn mowers run on a battery, mostly a lithium-ion battery. They are usually lightweight and durable. 

You can use these mowers without the restriction of cable length. They are best suited for yards of different sizes.

It is important to note that the best battery lawn mowers are pricier than several corded mowers, usually within the range of $500 for a high-quality model. 

The major disadvantage of these mowers is their runtime. Many of them run for about sixty minutes before they need to be re-charged.

This could be annoying if you are only halfway through mowing your lawn when the battery runs out.  

 So, yea, these are the different types of lawn mowers for different yard maintenance needs, with varying capabilities, designs, and features.