Deciding on which lawnmower to buy can be a daunting task. There are just so many different types with so many different features. There are basically four types available and they all have their pro’s and cons.
Push Reel Mowers are powered solely by you. There are no cords, no charging, no awful gas and oil fumes and they’re very quiet. If you enjoy a good workout this could be the ideal mower for you. If however you have a reasonably extensive lawn maybe not! They are also not very effective if your grass is longer than about 2 Â½ inches.
Electric Lawn Mowers need a power source and they can be limited by the length of the electrical cord, available power points and items that may snag the cord. If your lawn area is reasonably small and you’re not into workouts an electric mower is the right choice for you.
Cordless Mowers are powered by rechargeable batteries which on some mower models can be removed and charged wherever you like. With cordless mowers you do not have the hassle of plugging in the lead and having to be constantly aware of where your cord is lying but battery life can become an issue. If you have a larger than normal lawn you may not be able to complete the mowing on a single charge.
Gas Mowers are normally more powerful which is best if your grass is tall and thick but then you have to be able to tolerate the fumes and stench of gas and oil. These mowers need to be constantly serviced and you will also need a supply of gas and oil readily available.
What do all those power measurements on mowers mean —- The only thing that you need worry about is whether the lawnmower blades spin fast enough to cut the grass, but there are some points to keep in mind when you’re intending to buy.With gas mowers there are three measurements to consider —- horsepower (hp) which is the power output of the motor, torque which is the amount of power transferred to the blade and cc (cubic centimeters) which is the measurement of the motor output based on the displacement volume of the motor’s cylinders. You also have the two-stroke and the four-stroke where the two-stroke is believed to have a higher power output but also gives off more pollutants.
With cordless and electric lawnmowers power is measured in volts, amps or watts. To calculate horsepower consider that gas mowers have horsepower ratings starting at three horsepower. An electric mower using 6.5 amps generates about one horsepower and a 12 amp model generates nearly two horsepower. To calculate the horsepower of your electric mower multiply the amps by the volts and then divide that figure with 746. Having more horsepower does not necessarily mean more cutting power. For this reason most manufacturers started rating walk-behind mowers in torque power or cc’s, and a higher ‘cc’ usually means higher torque.
When deciding on which lawnmower to purchase rather go according to features, the available warranty and the reviews for that model and not only on the power measurements.The features to look for are as follows: —-The Cutting Deck refers to the blade housing. The wider the cutting deck equates to how many passes are required to mow a certain area. However if your mower has a wide deck it could be difficult to maneuver the mower into smaller areas.Mulching or Bagging.
Choose a mower with a rear or side bag option to collect cuttings alternatively if you would like to naturally fertilize your lawn with the clippings get a mower that can also mulch. A mower with a 3-in-1 feature will bag, mulch or side-discharge.For lawns with an undulating terrain choose a mower with at least 7-inch diameter wheels and preferably with ball-bearings.
Most mowers also allow you to adjust the cutting height which is the distance between the blade and your grass. Therefore you need to decide on how much range you need.Another good feature is a rubber flap at the back to block objects thrown up by the mower blades. Always follow the manufacturers safety instructions and always wear safety goggles to protect your eyes.
When buying a cordless mower consider purchasing an extra battery to enable you to finish mowing your lawn if the battery runs out. You can then keep one of the batteries on charge at all times while using the other. Typically a 24-volt mower will run for about 90 minutes and cut up to a third of an acre and a 36-volt will run for about 3 hours and cut up to half an acre.
When buying a corded mower ensure it has a cord holder to keep the cord under control when mowing.Gas mowers are available with recoil (or pull cord) or with an electric starter. Preferably go with an electric mower as the mower is started with a push of a button or turn of a key.
Push or Self-Propelled.A self-propelled mower will move forward without you having to push it. All that is required of you is to steer. If you have a relatively flat lawn save some money and do without this feature. If your lawn has a lot of slopes or rough terrain go for a self-propelled mower.
Mowers in this category that have rear wheel drive usually offer better traction. If you do choose a self-propelled mower choose a model with variable speed so that you can adjust the mower to a speed that is comfortable for you.
What maintenance and servicing is required differs from model to model. Always purchase a mower with a manufacturers warranty and follow the maintenance instructions rigidly to avoid any issues when a manufacturing problem arises. In general do the following —-Clean the mower after use.
Keep the engine properly tuned (gas mowers)Keep the battery charged according to the instructions (cordless mowers).In case of a manufacturing problem refer to the manufacturer’s website or manual to find the list of the closest service centers.
CARB-Compliant: What does it mean? CARB is an acronym for the California Air Resource Board whose strict air-quality standards have been adopted in many states. If the state you live in requires compliance for gas mowers, confirm that the model you intend buying is CARB-Compliant.
While these compliant mowers do run cleaner they still do give off pollutants. Rather purchase an electric or push reel mower and do your bit to save our fragile environment.