Q: What Is The Average Life Of A Riding Lawn Mower
A: The average life of a lawn mower is between 7 and 10 years but this is only possible if you take care of it and ensure that you complete proper maintenance and care and store it in the proper conditions when not in use. If you neglect to take good care of your mower, then you can expect it to last much less, perhaps as little as half the time.
Sometimes, mowers will not base their life expectancy on years, but instead mowing hours. Here, you will find statements anywhere between 200 hours and 500 hours . From here, you can determine how long your mower will last based on how big your cutting area is and how often you mow your lawn.
Taking the time to do proper maintenance on your mower will help save money on extra parts and replacements in the long run and will avoid you needing to buy these considerable investments every five years.
It isnt just maintenance that affects the lifespan of your mower. If your lawn is overgrown, thick, and generally not-very-well-maintained, it will put a greater strain on the blades and the engine, meaning there is great potential for damage much sooner than expected. Try to avoid cutting your lawn too infrequently and, if you can, try to improve your lawns condition to make it easier for the mower to do its job.
Factors To Consider When Buying A Riding Mower
There are a number of features to consider when purchasing a riding mower. Here, well break down the jargon and help you decide which features are best for you.
Cutting Deck Size
Probably the most important spec when it comes to any riding mower tractor, rear engine, or zero turn is the cutting deck size. The deck size is basically how much grass gets cut, and equivalent to the blade length. Smaller riders usually rear engine range from 28 to 36 inches wide not that much bigger than say a 24 inch push mower. Tractors typically have larger cutting decks, usually from 36 to 48 inches. Some such as the Craftsman model we recommend, have 54 inches. Zero turn mowers can have cutting decks from 40 to 60 inches.
The wider the cutting deck, the more grass you cut at once. However, a larger cutting deck means a larger mower, which means its tougher to cut close corners and get into tight spaces. So thats the tradeoff you have to make. Additionally, wider cutting deck generally means a higher price.
If you have a half acre lot or less, youre best off going with a cutting deck on the smaller end, simply because you wont have a whole lot of wide swaths that need cutting compared to all of the various corners and edges. If you have a 1+ acre lot, or a smaller lot with long straight-a-ways, go for a larger cutting deck. Only go for an extremely large deck if your lot is giant and regular.
Mulching and Discharge
Q: What Causes A Lawn Mower Engine To Sputter
A: You need not be a riding lawn mower expert to understand that engine sputtering is not a good thing. Luckily, its not the end of the world , and you wont need to worry about running out to the store – or Amazon, more likely – to order a new mower for immediate delivery.
That being said, if your engine is sputtering, then you should fix it as soon as possible, as leaving it will only exacerbate the issue. To solve it, there are several things you can try.
- Check for water in the gas tank, possibly from wet weather or moisture. Tip the gas tank over and empty it into a container.
- Change the oil by turning the oil case over so its under the carburetor. Drain the oil from the mower and replace it with the specified oil in your owners manual
- Replace the filter if its dirty, as this hinders ventilation and can lean to build-up of dirt and debris. You can also wash the foam filter with soap and water and allow it to dry.
- Check for caked on and dried grass as this is also a cause of sputtering due to blockage. Use a scraping tool to remove it, but make sure you remove the spark plug to stop the mower from turning on while youre doing it.
So yeah, like we said, its not the end of the world, but it should probably be a wake up call to take thorough care of your mower.
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Benefits Of Riding Lawn Mowers
If you are looking for reasons to buy a riding lawn mower, there are quite a few. For one, wider decks are ideal for large properties. Wider decks also imply wider cutting diameters.
Of course, with a wide cutting surface, you will need to make fewer runs to cut all the grass on your property. This even applies to a commercial setting where you are hired for the same. You thus end up saving a lot of time.
You also dont have to get tired. With most other mowers, you will have to either walk behind, push, or pull them. You expend a lot of energy moving up and down the property. With the riding lawn mower, you just sit on the device and maneuver it to where you want it to go.
Can I Adjust The Cut Height On My Riding Mower
Absolutely. Much like modern standard lawn mowers, the best riding mowers tend to come with multiple cut height options. This is perfect for uneven terrain, or simply to help ensure the perfect cut for your lawn.
Some models even come with a feature that allows you to change the cut height while the mower is motion while others require a more manual approach that means you have to turn off the machine, adjust the height and restart it.
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Q: What Size Riding Mower Do I Need
A: While were at, how long is a piece of string? You get what we mean? The size of the riding mower that you need will depend on how large your yard or cutting area is. Riding mowers are designed to cover much more ground than standing push mowers, so they will be larger than what you are used to.
If you have a large cutting area, then a larger, more powerful riding mower will be needed as they will complete a whole cut of your lawn in one go as opposed to needing to stop halfway through to refill the tank.
Conversely, smaller mowing areas will require smaller mowers as they will be easier to maneuver in tight spaces and will also not provide too much power that it becomes uncontrollable, sending you, unfortunately, through the neighbors fence and causing general mayhem and disaster while next door is trying to enjoy a family barbeque.
The best riding mowers will show the total cutting area from one fuel tank or charge, so make sure you know the size of your yard before purchasing to ensure you dont run out of juice halfway through a mow.
Snapper 2911525bve Classic Rer 28 Inch
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This classic riding lawn mower has tried and true features with an easy to use design. While it may have that old-time classic look, it has modern features and mowing innovations which makes it a great addition to your home. The engine has long-lasting durability and is also rear mounted for a classic look.
Its easy to start your mower as the controls arent difficult to operate, and the electric switch means that youve got a reliable start every single time. Other innovative features include the convenient 5-speed shift as well as the rolled edges of the mowing deck that helps in sucking up clippings for a clean cut.
You wont have to worry about this riding lawn mower taking up space as its got a vertical stand-on edge capability that makes it perfect for saving space during storage. The adjustable mid-back seat means that you can adjust it to a level that suits you best. Its also suited for lanes of all sizes, and those that have purchased it have given it rave reviews for its easy maneuverability, and ability to climb up small slopes.
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Riding Lawnmower Buyers Guide
Riding lawnmowers are expensive machines, and the last thing you want is to purchase a model that doesnt suit the size of your yard. In this section, well give you everything you need to know when selecting your ideal riding lawnmower.
Check out our frequently asked questions section for some more information on maintaining and using your new riding lawnmower. Here are the factors you need to look out for when choosing your machine.
Do Not Wear Baggy Clothing
There are many moving parts when you are riding a lawn mower. Because of this, any loose clothing that can get pulled into your mower could become a hazard to you. Avoided this by wearing clothing that is well fitted and not baggy. Additionally, do not tie long sleeve shirts to your waist while you are riding or keep lanyards or long handkerchief hanging from your pockets.
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Comfort: Could Be Better
Mowing takes time, and you will be sitting for hours in the seat, so it better be comfortable. The seat in the Cub Cadet XT1 ST54 has an ergonomically-shaped molded plastic frame with padding and a high back that provides extra support. The seat has springs that do a decent job offsetting the bumpy ride of the riding mower.
There are no armrests on this Cub Cadet model, which is disappointing. You’ll have to upgrade to the XT2 or XT3 models if you want this extra level of comfort. Next to the seat within easy reach is a cup holder and a holder for small tools.
The seat has springs that do a decent job offsetting the bumpy ride of the riding mower.
Greenworks 2 X 24v 20
According to Aqsa Tabassam, a gardener and landscaper with over 10 years of experience, this battery-driven push mower is one of the best on the market. It boasts four-in-one turbo technology that is ideal for leaf picking and provides maximum power, she said. This model has a cutting width of 20 inches, making it ideal for medium-sized and large lawns. If you prefer, you can also purchase it as a self-propelled mower.
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Husqvarna Mz Series Zero
Our Take Away
This zero-turn mower truly is the ultimate residential mowing machine. WIth cutting height adjustments from 1.5 4.5 inches, tons of options, power and speed, and the reliability of a Husqvarna. If you have a large property, and a larger budget to match This mower should be at or near the top of your list.
Husqvarna MZ Series Zero-Turn 61 Mower
Editors Choice: Husqvarna T348xd 48
Why We Like It
Husqvarna is one of the best-known names in the lawn equipment industry, which is why weve chosen the Husqvarna TS348XD as the Best Upgrade Riding mower in the mid-size 48-inch Deck class and one of the best riding lawn tractors overall.
Thanks to the exceptional 24-horsepower V-Twin engine, this Husqvarna Rider offers plenty of power! Also, the Husqvarna mower features a range of convenience features including cruise control, a 10-position adjustable seat, and an easy oil change system.
- 24 Horsepower Kohler Series V-twin engine
- Tuff-Tork Hydrostatic transmission
- 2-year warranty
Our Take Away
Overall, we love the Husqvarna and believe we are entirely justified in naming it as our Editors Choice pick. This Husqvarna riding lawn mower is extremely comfortable to operate, well-built, and produces a fantastic cut. If you need an excellent mower for a half-acre to 1-acre lot, the is our choice for the best riding lawn mower for 2021.
HUSQVARNA Best Upgrade 48 Riding Lawn Mower
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Best Riding Mowers For Your Property
According to CR’s tests, these tractors and riders are a cut above for mulching, bagging, and discharging
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When you have a lot of lawn to mow, theres nothing wrong with sitting down on the job. In fact, for lawns of half an acre or more, riding mowers that let you sit and steer are the way to go.
Your options fall into three broad categories.
Traditional lawn tractors: These feature a cutting deck from 42 to 54 inches wide, and typically top out at speeds of 4 to 5 mph. They tend to be very stable, so theyre the best choice if you have terrain thats bumpy or hilly.
Zero-turn-radius mowers: Theyre sized like tractors. But instead of a steering wheel, most have lever-arms for turning and navigation. These mowers can turn in place, nimbly maneuver around obstacles such as trees, and reach a higher top speed than tractors. And theyre generally more expensive than tractors.
If you have a fairly regularly-shaped lawn and want that groomed look, it may be best to opt for a tractor, says Misha Kollontai, who oversees Consumer Reports lawn-mower testing. They generally provide a more even cut and cost less than a zero-turn mower.
Zero-turn mowers also generally have a higher maximum speed, letting you get the job done faster, Kollontai says.
Choosing A Riding Lawn Mower: What To Look For
Riding mowers can be fitted with attachments to make them a versatile, year-round gardening tool.
Youve seen what we consider to be the very best riding mowers on the market, but if you still havent decided which mower to invest in, keeping the following key factors in mind should help you make your mind up:
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Cutting Width And Height
Cutting widths on our list range from 28 on the Snapper 2911525BVE Classic to 66 on the Swisher Z3166CPKA. Before purchase, you should know that the cutting diameter is constant on any riding mower. Consequently, you will be stuck with whichever option you pick for a long time to come.
Also, some people have miles of grass in their home compounds. The mowers available wont be able to clear the grass on these types of properties in one fell swoop. A couple of runs will be needed. The number of runs is greatly reduced if you have a 66 cutting width as opposed to a 28 option.
You, therefore, have to gauge which of these two extremes best suits your property and needs. There as well isnt anything wrong with choosing an option in the middle.
With cutting heights, you get more fluid options. Most of the devices mentioned above offer a range of sizes to choose from. All you would need to do is adjust it according to the needs of the day. Of course, higher-end models come with wider ranges and more cutting height options.
The Ariens Apex 60 Kawasaki is a prime example of a high-end model with cutting height options of between 1.5 and 5. In contrast, the Troy-bilt Horse 42 costs a fraction of the price and has a range of between 1.25 and 3.75. As such, you have to decide which of these two ranges appeals most to you. This may be tied to the vision you have for your lawn.
Shopping For A New Riding Mower
Shopping for a riding mower can be as confusing as buying a new car. First, you have to choose the basic style you need, then compare deck and engine sizes, transmission choices, and power and accessory options. And, since even the stripped-down models can cost more than a thousand dollars, you cant afford to make a mistake and buy the wrong machine for your yard. Well help you choose the best riding lawn mower for your needs with some of the best lawn tractor reviews.
Additionally, well help you navigate the various styles and options to find which machines are right for your particular lawn and budget. And well give you some buying tips with these riding mower reviews so you can get the most bang for your buck and the best riding lawn mower for your needs.
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Husqvarna Yth18542 42 In 185 Hp Briggs & Stratton Hydrostatic Riding Mower
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The final riding lawn mower that weve got on the list is the Husqvarnariding lawn mower. Its the perfect lawn mower to purchase if youre looking for something that offers premium performance with quality results. Its compact size means that they require less space for storage, and theyre much easier to maneuver than a larger mower.
It also comes with numerous features from a Stratton Intek engine for powerful performance, foot pedal-operated hydrostatic transmission, fender-mounted cutting height adjustment, and an adjustable seat. Its 16-inch turning radius means that its good for smaller spaces and for navigating around obstacles. The mid-back seat is also supremely comfortable, and the mower also has an ergonomic steering wheel.
The 42-inch reinforced cutting deck of the riding lawn mower also comes with uniquely integrated air induction mowing technology thatll make sure that youve got a clean and consistent cut of grass every time. You wont regret purchasing this riding lawn mower that comes with plenty of features, its also rated highly and is a great mower thatll get the job done.