How to Choose a Lawn Mower

Choose a Lawn Mower
Choose a Lawn Mower

How to Choose a Lawn Mower. Choosing the right lawn mower can simplify lawn mowing and keep the grass looking healthy. Compare features and cost, but also be sure you understand what type of mower is best for your yard. If you have a very big yard or if you're just a very lazy person, a motor driven lawn mower is probably the way to go.

Things You'll Need

  • Electric Mulching Mowers
  • Riding Mowers
  • Gas-powered Mowers
  • Push Reel Mowers

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Compare weight, power, cost, safety features, ease of starting, handling and maneuverability, and ease of clipping disposal.

Select a push reel mower (cuts with a scissor-like action of rotating blades passing over a stationary knife) if you have a small lawn.

Choose a gas- or electric-powered rotary mower (cuts with a circular blade that rotates under a protective housing) if you have a large lawn made of grasses such as bluegrass and fescue that don't need to be cut shorter than 2 inches high.

Choose a mulching mower if you don't want to deal with clippings. Mulching mowers cut clippings very small so that they disappear into the lawn.

Choose a gas-powered reel mower if you have a large lawn made of grasses such as Bermuda or bent grass that need to be cut shorter than 2 inches high.

Select a self-propelled mower if you have a hilly yard or a large lawn.

Choose a riding lawn mower if you have a really big lawn.

Tips & Warnings

  • Rotary mowers are by far the most popular type of lawn mower. They're lightweight, and you can sharpen the blades yourself. Reel mowers must be taken to a lawn mower shop for sharpening.
  • Electric mowers are environmentally friendly and increasing in popularity. Rechargeable types eliminate the need for dragging a cord around. (Cordless mowers now have batteries that allow you to mow up to 1/3 acre.) Be ready to mow more often though; these mowers aren't made for deep cutting.
  • Consider safety features carefully. Many people are injured mowing lawns. Choose a power mower with a blade shut-off switch and a dead-man switch.
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