How do I choose a lawn mower?
By DIY Network
When it comes to mowers, there are several factors to consider: weight, power, cost; safety features, ease of starting, handling and maneuverability, and ease of clipping disposal.Selecting the Mower
Select a push-reel mower (cuts with a scissorlike action of rotating blades passing over a stationary knife) if you have a small lawn.Maintaining the Mower
If you have a large lawn of grasses such as bluegrass and fescue that don't need to be cut shorter than 2", choose a gas- or electric-powered rotary mower. This type cuts with a circular blade that rotates under a protective housing.
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 needs to be cut shorter than 2".
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.
Do you have someone who does your mowing for you? You'd be wise to invest in your own mower anyway ? lawn diseases can be spread by means of mowers.
- Make sure the cutting blade is kept sharp.
- Keep the underside of the mower clean.
- 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.
Many people are injured mowing lawns, so it's imperative that you consider safety features carefully. Choose a power mower with a blade-shutoff switch and a dead-man switch.
Enjoy this article? Sign up for our free newsletters: