Lawn Mowers

What other types of Lawn Mowers are There

February 14th, 2018 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower No Comments »

There are a variety of types of lawn mowers for consumers to choose from. They have various applications and may be of interest to home owners with specific needs for maintaining their lawns. Electric nylon lawn mowers cut grass with nearly the same efficiency as steel bladed lawnmowers and are much safer. Two counter rotating disk powered by separate electric motors spin mono filament line to mow and trim your lawn.

Several other less common types of mowers are available for special jobs. Flail mower‘s, also known as hammer knife mowers use T-shaped blades revolving on a horizontal shaft to cut grass.

They are useful in maintaining rough areas such as vacant lots and on the sides of highways. Sickle bar mowers are perfect for an empty lot overgrown with weeds. They are the same sort of more that farmers use to cut fields of oats and other hay fields.

Types of Lawn Mowers

Heavy real mower are useful for the one or two times you need to cut the lawn extra low for Thatch removal. Many consumers will rent this type of lawn mower from a local small tool rental store instead of investing in this type when it is only used once or twice a year.

High wheel rotary mower cut higher than most rotary mowers, about 4 inches, and are easy to maneuver over rough terrain. If you just want to keep the weeds at bay and are not concerned about having a manicured look to the lawn, this type of mower is very useful. Again, if you only use it once in awhile, renting can be an option.

For more details about types of lawn mowers to purchase, click here.

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What are Reel Lawn Mowers

February 7th, 2018 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower No Comments »

Reel lawn mowersReel mowers her available in manual models or powered with gasoline or electric engines. They cut with a scissor action, which produces the cleanest cut. Reel lawn mowers conform better to lawn contours than rotary lawnmowers, but are impractical on rough uneven ground or for tall growing grass. They can also be difficult to push when the ground is rough or if the grass is long. Owners should cut the grass often to avoid more difficult mowing situations.

Because they can be adjusted to cut quite low, they are the preferred lawn mower for bent grass or Bermuda grass lawns. In general, reel mowers are preferred for fine lines but perform poorly on tall grasses and lawns with high, wiry seed heads.

Reel lawn mowers

Power reel lawn mowers discharge clippings from either the rear or the front. The rear throw type is widely available and less expensive. Front throw lawn mowers are used primarily by professional landscape gardeners. They are usually well-made and can stay in constant use.

The weight and power of these lawnmowers makes them perfect for the lawn mowing requirement of Bermuda grass or Zoysiagrass lawns. Height is easy to adjust, usually with just a lever. Some can be adjusted low enough to cut at the soil line.

For more information about buying a lawn mower, click here.

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Rotary Lawn Mowers

January 21st, 2018 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower No Comments »

Power rotary lawn mowers are the most popular by far. It is generally lower priced, more versatile, and easier to handle and maintain than a reel type lawn mower. It stands rougher use. It’s blades cut like a spinning scythe , which is better for taller growing, less intensively maintained lawns. The blades are also easier to sharpen.

Rotary Lawn Mowers

However, power rotary lawn mowers require great caution in use. They need larger motors with more horsepower; they do not cut as cleanly as a properly sharpened reel lawn mower; and few can mow lower than 1 inch. The lawn mower also shakes if blades get out of balance.

The type that rides on a cushion of air, rather than on wheels, is the easiest to use if your lawn is smooth and level. It is almost friction less and can be swept sideways as well as forward and backward. However, it does not hover properly on rough ground, and it’s tendency to skim downhill makes it difficult to use on sloping lines. They are not as popular as some of the other types of lawn mowers.

You probably need a riding lawn mower if your lawn is large. Riding lawnmowers come in Rotary and reel models, but rotaries are the most common types available. Although they are fun for adults to drive, they are not toys; do not let children playing with them. If you really want the exercise, stay away from a riding lawn mower. Although it is a lot more walking, this is great exercise.

We have lots more articles on this site, including reviews about specific lawn mowers. For more information about buying a lawn mower, click here.

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Lawn Mower Types

January 7th, 2018 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower No Comments »

Almost every home owner with a lawn as a lawn mower. The number of available varieties and styles grows each year. It pays to shop around until you find the mower that meets your specifications. There are many lawn mowers to select, but really only two major lawn mower types. It really depends on your lawn size, how much exercise you want to get and whether you want to go with the top of the line or a simple straightforward lawn mower.

Lawn Mower Types

The two most common mowers are the reel and the rotary. Each basic type has its variations for example gas or electric power, walking or riding, pushing or self-propelled. Some have bagging attachments or grass catchers. While these are similar features look  them over carefully to determine how they operate and are used. Consumers will want to make sure they are convenient and easy to use in their circumstances.

Before buying a lawnmower, look it over carefully. Consider it’s maneuverability. Make sure the grass catcher is easy to take on and off. Ask about the safety features. These points will help you choose the right lawn mower type for your personal situation.

Lawnmowers can be specialized. Some are designed to cut weeds, others are engineered to produce the carpet like nap you have on a putting green. There are some unusual types, too, such as the one that rides on a cushion of air and the one that cuts with a spinning mono-filament line.

Our next post will discuss the attributes of rotary lawnmowers. After that we will talk about reel type lawn mowers and other types. There is so much to choose from it may be difficult to make a decision. The best approach is to educate yourself before making a decision.

For more information about buying a lawn mower, click here.

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Repairing Your Lawn Mower vs Buying New

March 21st, 2012 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower 1 Comment »

Repairing Your Lawn MowerShould you invest money into repairing your lawn mower or should you invest  in a brand new lawn mower? Many people are faced with this dilemma every year and sometimes it is difficult to know just how much you should spend or when you should just send the old one to the dump. I was recently faced with this problem and fortunately for me, there were lots of sales on at the time and I was able to get a really good deal on a self propelled lawn mower for just under $200.

Repairs to my 32 year old lawn mower were going to cost me around $100,  so there was no decision really. I may have been able to fix it myself, but frankly after 32 years, I figured it was time to get a new self propelled model so it was more of “I want” kind of decision than an economic one.

Regular Maintenance will Keep Your Old Lawn Mower going

For years I had self repaired my lawn mower. I changed the oil every year, replaced the spark plug every couple of years and sharpened the blade myself as well. These were all basic maintenance things that I could do myself and kept my lawn mower running smoothly for many years. Unfortunately the body began to rust out and there was really nothing I could do for it. In fact it was becoming dangerous to operate, so it was time to replace it. As I mentioned I was able to get a great deal on a new on at Lowes.

Not everyone can do the repairs that I did. Many do not want to be bothered with these sorts of things either. Some of my neighbors never even change the oil in their lawn mowers. They just keep going on the same old engine oil until the engine just seizes up from really bad oil after a couple of years. By the time you take your lawn mower into a small engine shop, pay for the tune up and oil change and pick it up again, you have invested time and money in a machine that is not really worth that much. You can purchase a new lawnmower for under $200. It begins to get close to a replacement option that is more reasonable than doing repairs.

Repairing Your Old Lawn Mower

For folks with jobs or people with lots of money, they probably cannot be bothered with changing oil or repairing their old lawn mowers. Just buy a new one. But what if you are living on a fixed income. Or are unemployed and you need to stretch every dollar as far as possible? Doing your own repairs becomes almost necessary!

If you do it yourself, it can be pretty reasonable vs. paying a small engine mechanic to do repairs and change oil. If they charge $20 and hour, and it takes an hour to do the work then you can save yourself $20. You still have to pay for oil and any parts you need. But you are saving yourself money. Maintaining the engine and body in excellent working order will also ensure that your lawn mower lasts for many years.

Rule of thumb for Deciding on New vs. Repairing Your Lawn Mower

This is my rule of thumb. When it comes to the decision process re fix an old lawn mower vs. purchase a new one.

  • Can I repair it myself
  • What will the parts costs
  • What will it cost to have a small engine mechanic do the repairs
  • How much does a new lawn mower cost
  • Can I sell my old one and for how much

If the repairs are 50% of the cost of a new lawn mower, I would be tempted to just go for the new lawn mower. Chances are that once these repairs are completed and paid for, there may be more more repairs a year from now. Purchase a new one now. For me 50% is the rule of thumb I use. However for some of our readers your decision point may be higher or lower. It depends on your personal situation and criteria.

Satisfaction with Self Propelled Lawn Mower

By the way I am very happy with my new self propelled lawn mower. This is the first time I have had one. Although I really did not need the self propulsion system, it is a breeze to cut the lawn. In addition this particular lawn mower is 2 inches wider. It is surprising the amount of time it saves me in time when I am cutting the lawn.

The old lawn mower was placed along the curb the night before garbage day. Someone came along and picked it up. Hopefully they will repair it and someone will be able to continue using it.

We have written a number of posts about selecting a new lawn mower. Find the features that are right for you. Take a look at these posts to help you with your decision to purchase a new lawn mower if you decide to go in that direction.


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Tips for Selecting a Lawn Mower to Meet Your Needs

February 21st, 2012 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower 1 Comment »

Tips for Selecting a Lawn MowerSummer is just around the corner and it is time to begin thinking about selecting a lawnmower that you need to keep your yard and grass looking great. We have put together a few ideas and tips to help you make the decision regarding which lawn mower will best fit your needs. There are many different manufacturers, sizes, types, and features that can be considered. Take a look at some of our thoughts about how to select a lawnmower.

Regardless of when you are planning to buy, whether it is now in the spring or later in the summertime, we thought that these tips for selecting a new lawnmower would help you when it comes time to make your selection.

Selecting a Lawn Mower

Also, refer to our previous post, find the best lawn mower for your money, to help make your decision. Here are a few ideas about making your selection.

  • Mulch, Grass Catchers, or Spread Cuttings on the Lawn
  • Narrow vs. Wider lawn Mowers
  • Large Lawn Areas really need Gas Machines
  • Focus on the Basics you need and add Bonus Features
  • How Much Physical Effort can You Handle?

Mulch, Grass Catchers, or Spread Cuttings on the Lawn

Many lawn mowers come with all 3 options, however, some do not so it is important to decide which cutting option you need for your lawn. Mulching is by the far the best since you do not need to bag or rake the grass cuttings and the grass cuttings will disintegrate and re-fertilize your lawn as they are absorbed back into your lawn. If you have long grass, mulching typically does not work very well, so you will need to either bag your grass clippings with an attached grass catcher or rake the lawn afterward, neither is fun to do especially the raking part.

Narrow vs. Wider lawn Mowers

The wider the lawnmower, the more quickly you will finish cutting the lawn. A wide lawn mower can save a lot of time, however, many people forget the fact that they need to store their lawn mower somewhere, and if your garage is small, you need to take this into account.

Large Lawn Areas really need Gas Machines

Electric machines work well on small lawns and you do not need a long extension cord to mow these lawns. Rechargeable lawn mowers are now available, however, you want to make sure that you can cut the entire lawn on one battery charge! Most people will find that they are better off with a gas-powered machine on large lawns, simply for the flexibility and no need to make sure that the battery is charged or trail a long cord along after you.

Focus on the Basics you need and add Bonus Features

Electric vs. Gas; mulching, grass catching and/or spreading grass clippings on the lawn, size of lawnmower, reliability, reviews from other customers, and of course price are the important basic elements that you should be considering. Make your decisions about these and then give some thought about other features that you may be interested in.

Features such as auto choke, propulsion systems,  folding handles, and other features too numerous to mention depending on the manufacturer and the size and price of the machine you are considering.

How Much Physical Effort Can You Handle?

If you have a large lawn, you may want to consider a riding lawnmower. Or at the very least a self-propelled lawnmower. I recently purchased one, not because I needed a self-propelled lawnmower, but because the price was so good. Anyway, it is front-wheel drive and very easy to steer and makes grass cutting a pleasure.  All you need to do is walk behind it and steer. No need to push it up hills or in difficult areas. You let the machine pull you along at its own speed. This is something to consider if you need help with your lawn or do not want to push your lawnmower around a large lawn area.

Selecting a Lawn Mower – Summary

Spend a few minutes thinking about which features are the most important for your personal situation. Then look for the best deal across several vendors.

Hopefully, these tips will help readers make decisions about which lawn mower to purchase, whether you are taking advantage of the sales in the spring or picking one up in the fall before the winter season begins. For more thoughts and ideas about buying a lawnmower, click here.


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Find the Best LawnMower for Your Money

February 7th, 2012 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower 1 Comment »

Find the Best Lawn Mower for Your MoneyThere are lots of features to choose from when it comes to buying a lawnmower. They are an expensive purchase so you will want to select the best lawn mower for your money. We decided to write this post to help you make your decision and provide some thoughts to help you chose the right machine for your needs and for your money. Find the best lawnmower for your money. The first step is to figure out what features are must-haves and those that are nice to have. The second step is to establish what the regular price is for a lawnmower with these features and then watch for sale prices before you make a purchase.

Finding the best lawn mower for your money is more than the cost. You want to find the right lawnmower that meets your needs, with a good reputation for reliability and service at the best price you can find. Part of this decision is to make sure you make the right choices for features that will meet your needs now and in the years to come.

Find the Best LawnMower for Your Money

Basic decisions include:

  •  Gas or Electric
  • Hand start or Electric start for gas models
  • Self-propelled or push lawn mower
  • Lawn  size
  • Storage location
  • Watch for Sales

Gas or Electric

Many people are pretty focused on electric machines, either the rechargeable battery type or those that trail a long cord and plug into the outside wall outlet. They want to protect the environment and there is certainly nothing wrong with that. There is certainly less pollution in your area and you do not need to worry about storing gasoline and oils which is obviously better for the environment in your area for sure.  However, if your electricity is generated by a local coal plant or oil-fired plant then you may not be really not improving the environment too much. Something to consider.

The other major issue is to make sure that the rechargeable battery on your lawnmower is sufficient to cut all of your lawn, otherwise, you have to recharge before you can complete cutting your lawn or purchase another battery. If you have the chord type, you also need to ensure that the chord will be long enough for your particular yard. Depending on your assessment, you may choose a gas-powered lawnmower.
Hand start or Electric start for gas models

Self-propelled or push lawn mower

You will definitely enjoy a self-propelled lawnmower however it can be a bit if overkill if you have a small flat lawn. You will pay more money for one of these machines than a standard push lawnmower. It really comes down to the size of the lawn that is being cut and whether it is flat or not vs. how much work you want to do vs. your pocketbook. It is a really great feature and more and more lawn mowers are being made available with this feature.

Lawn  size

Wider, larger lawnmowers will save you time when it comes to cutting the lawn. It is as simple as that, however, they also cost more. If you have a small postage stamp size lawn, don’t waste your money on a large lawnmower. If it takes you 3 hours to cut the lawn every weekend, you will really appreciate the larger wider cut and the time it saves.  Also, it is time vs. how much money you want to spend.

Storage location

I like to store my lawnmower indoors which in my case means my garage. I can get it in with two cars and a snowblower so I am ok. However, I also have an average size lawnmower. Any larger and I would have a problem finding a place to store it when I am not using it.

Decide where you plan to store yours and measure the space to make sure your space is large enough to handle the lawn mower you intend to purchase.

Watch for Sales

Once you have made a decision on these basic features, it is time to watch for sales. The best time to find the best sales is near the end of the season, however, you may be somewhat limited in the choice of lawnmowers available to you.  Dealers do not want to carry inventory into the winter so they would rather sell it at a lower price instead of keeping these units for another 8 to 9 months.

At some locations, you might even be able to negotiate with them to get a better deal. Don’t hold back on your quest for the best deal. Remember that the worst thing that can happen when you ask for a better price is that they say no, that is the best price. However, if they knock another 10% off the cost of the lawnmower you want to purchase, you are way ahead as a result. I always like the money in my pocket vs. someone else!

For more about Find the Best Lawn Mower for Your Money when buying a lawnmower, click here.


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Best Time to Buy a Lawnmower

August 21st, 2010 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower 3 Comments »

Best Time to Buy a Lawn MowerLate summer is the Best Time to Buy a Lawnmower from any of the major stores such as Home Depot, Lowes, Canadian Tire, Sears, and many more. There is not a single store owner who wants to get stuck carrying old inventory over to another season. If they have not sold all of their product by now, they are ready to place major sales on lawnmowers and in fact all lawn products. If you have been holding off, now is the time to make a purchase! Watch for sales in the newspaper, flyers that come around to your door. Also just go into the store and talk with a salesperson to learn when sales will be starting.

Replacing my Old Lawnmower

My 32-year-old Craftsman lawnmower just quit. Now I really like to fix things. However this time it was beyond what I could do myself. So I had to bite the bullet as they say and purchase a new lawnmower. Before I talk about my new lawnmower and the great deal I got, I just want to mention that my old one was in great shape. The housing was solid as were the wheels. I think the engine was as well. However, it really needed a tune-up and that meant taking it to a mechanic. It might have cost me $50 to get it fixed. But would you spend $50 on a lawnmower that is 32 years old? It did not owe me a thing. I was very happy with it while it worked, but it was time to change.

Best Time to Buy a Lawnmower on Sale

On top of all of that, I only had to pay $216 for a 22-inch Yardman lawnmower. It also has 2-n-1 features, self propelled 139 cc mulching lawnmower. That was more than $80 off the price they were charging a week earlier. The prices are coming down! Now I might have done a bit better had I waited until the end of August. However, the selection might be more limited.  I might not have been able to find a lawnmower at all. So now is the time to buy when the sales are on. As a result, there is still some selection to choose from!

The Yardman model we purchased is a 2-N-1 self-propelled mower with a Powermore OHV engine, front-wheel drive ( which by the way is much easier to maneuver than a rear-wheel drive, in the writer’s opinion), with either side discharge or mulching configuration. It does not have a grass catcher, but that is ok because I am more than happy to not have to fill grass bags and put them out to the garbage every week!

There is a choke on this engine so you do not have to prime it to start it, but you do have to set the choke when the engine is cool.  The wheels are all the same being 8-inch in diameter. The wheels can also be adjusted to select one of 6 positions in height. It comes with a 2-year limited warranty and because I used my credit card, I will get another year added on. I was offered a one-year extension of the warranty for a small fee, however, I get free extensions on my credit card so did not take this insurance.

Does Anyone have One of these Machines?

I am really looking forward to trying out this lawnmower and will provide an update on how I like or dislike the machine in my next post. If anyone has one of these machines, I would appreciate your comments, positive or negative.

So far I am really satisfied with this lawnmower. I have discovered that it is not as well built as my craftsman lawn mower and will probably not last as long as it did, however for the price I paid for the lawnmower it is ok.  I am really happy about not having to bag the grass any longer and since I take good care of my lawnmowers, chances are it will last a long time.

Leave a comment on our blog and I will be happy to approve the comment. Note that spam comments will be erased. For more information about buying a lawnmower, click here.


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Self-Propelled Lawnmower

July 21st, 2010 ernie Posted in Buying a Lawn Mower 1 Comment »

Self Propelled Lawn MowersMy lawnmower recently broke down and I guess I will have to fix it. It is an old model, in fact, it is over 30 years old but still worked fine up until today. Anyway, I borrowed my neighbor’s new lawnmower which just happens to be a self-propelled lawnmower model. This is the first time I have used a self-propelled lawnmower. I thought I would write about it. Turns out that I really liked using his lawnmower. Now I want one of my own that is self-propelled.

Self-Propelled Lawnmowers – Borrow a Lawn Mower

It is not always a good idea to borrow other people’s tools. If you break them you have to replace them with a brand new model. Even if they lend you something that is close to the end of its life.  This was not my situation, I just do not like to borrow other people’s tools.

Anyway, his lawnmower was a self-propelled mower and I found that I quite liked it. There are rear self-propelled models and front propelled models. This was a front self-propelled model so I really cannot compare it to these other models. There are two levers on the handle. One is the normal safety lever which causes the engine to stop if you let it go. The other lever engages the power wheels to drive the lawnmower.

Self Propelled Lawnmowers – How to Use

I found that you could really not push the lawnmower easily. Sometimes you want to go slowly especially if the grass is thick. Or if you are navigating around a plant for example. You can push the lawnmower, it is just a little more difficult than a normal non-self-propelled lawnmower. I guess the wheels or the transmission provides some resistance.

Along with a straight cut, using the self-propelled feature is easy and very helpful. Basically, all you need to do is steer the lawnmower and it moves along at a reasonable speed for walking. If you need to go more slowly or want to turn, just lean on the handle to raise the front wheels slightly and your forward momentum decreases or stops altogether. The wheels continue to turn, however, they are not touching the ground and will not pull the mower forward as long as they are raised.

I was also cutting the grass when it was wet from heavy morning dew. I know I really should not have been cutting it at this time. Most people wait until the grass has dried. However, we had a party later in the day. I really needed to have the lawn cut and looking good. This lawnmower really got a workout with the wet grass and also my lawn had not been cut in a while.

I had to make frequent stops to clear the grass chute. Wet grass does not blow very far and so it would stop at the entrance to the bag. As a result, I could only go about 50 feet before the grass would plug the entrance to the bag and I would have to stop and clear the bag.

Self-propelled lawnmower

Aside from the issues I have mentioned, I was very satisfied with my neighbor’s lawnmower and would probably purchase a self-propelled lawnmower if  I cannot fix my own. With a large lawn and being able to just follow along, steering the lawnmower, you really cannot get any better than that unless you are sitting on a riding lawnmower.

My own lawn mower is not running well due to what I think is old gas that has clogged my gas tank and/or my carburetor on the lawnmower. I really cannot complain since I have not tuned this thing up for over 20 years. Nor have I replaced the spark plug, nor have I cleaned the carburetor. I guess it is about time I did these things and will have to fix it within the next week or buy a new one.

I will keep you posted on my attempts to fix my lawnmower and if you have any comments about self-propelled lawn mowers or fixing lawn mowers feel free to leave comments on my blog. For more information about buying a new lawnmower, click here.


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