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8 Best Riding Lawn Mowers – Compared & Reviewed

Last Updated: 05.06.20

 

Best Riding Lawn Mower Review – Top Rated Models with Buying Guide

 

Because we know that finding a good mower can be hard, our team has analyzed some of the best riding lawn mowers and made a list of their qualities and flaws to make your choice easier. We have concluded that the Troy Bilt Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower is a great choice especially due to the quality materials it is made of that makes it durable and because of its functionality. It has a powerful engine but, at the same time, it is smaller than similar products. The size makes it easy to store and maneuver. You can always check up on the fuel levels and the tank capacity is 1.3 gallons. It also has a manual power take-off that makes the product really efficient when it comes to time and ease of use. If this product is not available, the Husqvarna Z254 Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower is also a great choice.

 

 

Comparison table

 

The Good
The Bad
Verdict
Price

 

 

8 Best Riding Lawn Mowers (Updated Reviews) in 2020

 

 

Trying to purchase a good mower might be overwhelming because they have a lot of features and sometimes it might be hard to differentiate the good from the bad. That is why we have made a list of some of the most popular products on the market that will help you choose according to your needs.

 

 

1. Troy Bilt Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower

 

If you are looking to upgrade your lawn mowing experience, this product might be exactly what you need. The great thing about it is that it combines the efficiency of a riding mower with the small size of a walk-behind mower. This is great because you will not need a lot of space to store it.

The engine is made of quality materials and has a power of 382cc and the blades are made to last. It comes with a fuel tank that can store up to 1.3 gallons of gas and you will always be able to check up on the fuel level.

Mowing the lawn is for most people a burden, but your experience will be a lot more comfortable due to the mid-back chair that will offer a lot of support. Also, the steering wheel has a soft grip, which will allow you to rest your hands, and it measures 13 inches in diameter.

 

Pros

Not having to walk behind a mower is one thing, but being able to rest on a soft and comfortable chair while riding your mower is a big benefit that this product brings to the table.

This mower has sharp blades that are height-adjustable, perfect to suit your every need.

An even greater plus is the manual power take-off which will help you do the job a lot quicker and with less stress.

The turning radius is 18 inches and helps when it comes to the fast engagement of the blades, which means that the time you spend mowing will be reduced.

 

Cons

It would be great if this mower would come with a high-back seat. The experience would get even more comfortable with one; however, it would take up more space and a mid-back seat is also comfortable, so a small minus in comfort brings a big plus when it comes to storage space.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

 

 

 

2. Husqvarna Z254 Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower

 

As you probably know, ZTR mowers are great when it comes to speed and this particular one will not let you down as it comes with a maximum speed of 6.5 miles per hour. It will reduce the time you used to spend mowing your lawn with a walk-behind mower by half. That’s great news, right?

If you haven’t ridden one of these before, you should know that a great feature this product has is that it has a brake system that activates when you move the steering levers outward and deactivate when you move them inward, making it really easy to maneuver.

The cutting deck comes with amazing quality, as it is made of flat-stock steel. You will be able to discharge the clippings, but also mulch or bag them. However, for the last two actions, you will need to purchase the attachments separately. It has a comfortable seat and the levers have a soft and strong grip.

 

Pros

This riding mower is very durable and, if you decide to purchase it, you will be very happy to know that you will be able to use it for a long time because it has a 26 HP Kohler engine and the cutting deck is made of a sturdy material that is durable.

6.5 miles per hour is not a low speed when it comes to riding mowers and it will help you reduce the time you spend doing this activity.

The manufacturers offer the opportunity to also mulch and bag the clippings and, even though you have to purchase the attachments separately, these features will help you a lot.

Users have been really happy that the product is really easy to put together and get started.

 

Cons

Some users have complained about the fact that after they have put it together, the mower would not start in the first try. However, it is really important to follow the instructions thoroughly. 

Buy from Amazon.com for ($2899.95)

 

 

 

3. Snapper Classic Rear Engine Riding Mower

 

This rear engine mower is a great choice if you have a small yard. It even works really well on medium landscapes. It is affordable and you get a lot of great features. First of all, the engine is pretty good. It has 11.5 HP and a motor of 344cc, so we could say that it will help you do a good job. 

It is small and has a 28 inches wide deck which is perfect if you don’t have to mow a large field. It comes with a 4 cycle OHV engine which is relatively efficient when it comes to fuel consumption.

Depending on the type of terrain and the grass you have to mow, you can adjust the speed according to your needs as this product comes with the possibility of choosing between 5 blade speeds. It will save you a lot of storage space due to the vertical stand-on-edge feature.

 

Pros

The engine is perfect for a small to medium lawn. This means that it will not have high fuel consumption and there is no need for a more powerful one if you do not own a large land.

Briggs & Stratton Power Built engines come with a really high-quality, so you can count on this product to do a great job for a really long time.

It is relatively small and can be easily stored due to the vertical stand-on-edge feature which allows you to reduce the space it takes in your storage.

The command controls are easy to reach and the ergonomics of this product will make you feel really comfortable.

 

Cons

The chair could have better back support. However, you will not use it for hours in a row, as it is best suited for medium or small yards and it does not create such a big discomfort. For people who make the jump from a back-walking mower, it will be a great upgrade.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($2249.95)

 

 

 

4. Troy Bilt Pony 42X Riding Lawn Mower

 

This tractor mower will make you really enjoy your mowing experience because, if we start with the cheesy stuff, it is really comfortable. If we talk about the more technical and important features, we can tell you that it has a premium engine with a displacement of 420cc that comes with an oil filter.

When we talk about this product we can honestly say that it comes with great quality. The materials that it is made from are durable and strong. The cutting deck is made of steel and the tractor also has a steel front axle. The 42-inch deck has two sharp and strong blades that do a great job.

You can perform mulching and side discharging, which will reduce the time you would spend doing them manually or using other devices. The chair is also really comfortable and the steering wheel has a strong and comfortable grip.

 

Pros

The engine is powerful and made of really strong materials that will allow you to use the product for a long time.

Tractor lawn mowers are known to be able to endure heavy-duty mowing and this product does exactly what the customers expect from it.

The deck is durable and has two blades that have high precision, so you will not have to worry about having to perform the mowing twice.

You can use it for mulching, a feature that will reduce a lot of time. You will also be able to discharge the clippings, a feature that not all of the tractors have.

 

Cons

The seat is not very comfortable. However, if you have been using a walk-behind mower, actually sitting on a chair while performing this action is an upgrade itself when it comes to your comfort.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($2143.8)

 

 

 

5. Craftsman R105 Single Engine Series

 

Craftsman is one of the highest-rated brands when it comes to lawn mowers and it produces a variety of good quality riding mowers. This product is no exception. This model has a 382cc powerful engine that works on gas. The great feature that this mower has is its 6 speeds that help you adjust the mowing process according to your own needs.

The cutting deck is 30 inches wide and the product comes with a deck wash included. The seat is really comfortable and offers mid-back support, making this product a great choice for people who find lawn mowing relatively uncomfortable.

It is really easy to maneuver due to the turf saver wheels and this will save a lot of time and a lot of energy on your part, making it a great product if you want to spend your time more efficiently. Most people who have used this product have actually expressed their appreciation and are really happy with their choice.

Pros  

This product is really dependable and does a really great job because it was designed to be maneuvered easily.

It is great if you have a medium-size land and the great thing about it is that you can adjust the speed according to your needs, as the product comes with 6-speed options. 

You are always able to check the fuel level and will not be surprised to find yourself stuck in the middle of your land because you are out of gas.

The thing that is really great is that it comes with a very detailed user manual that will make you understand everything you need to do to assemble it and use it properly, even if you have never used one before.

 

Cons

The terrain has to be relatively flat and anything that is above a 12-degree angle will put you in danger of falling over, so before you purchase it make sure that your lawn is suited to be mowed with this type of riding mower.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

 

 

 

6. Craftsman T225 Briggs & Stratton Gold Riding Lawn Mower

 

Another great model from Craftsman, the T225 has a motor made by Briggs & Stratton which is known to provide great quality. This beautiful lawn tractor mower has great reviews when it comes to its chair. Believe it or not, this is one of the aspects that made most customers really happy and took comfort to another level.

It is designed to be efficient on large lawns and one great feature that it has is that you can start the engine with the use of a button. The 46-inch deck helps you trim, clip and cut grass and does the job really quickly. The T225 also comes with a foot hydrostatic transmission and deck wash.

For spots that are harder to mow, this tractor uses a technology that allows you to mow in reverse. The front axle is made of cast-iron and the tractor itself is durable – that is why the manufacturers offer a two-year warranty.

Pros

This is one of the few products that come with a high-quality and high-back seat. These two are essential features that offer efficiency and comfort, making your mowing experience relaxing.

The engine is really powerful and the cutting deck is made of great materials that will allow you to enjoy the product for a long time.

Also, the hydrostatic transmission and the deck wash will make your job a lot easier. 

A great feature that this riding mower has is that you can mow in reverse, an action that will help you do your job a lot quicker than with a mower that does not allow you to do that.

 

Cons

This mower is great for people who have a large lawn and it is relatively big and takes up a lot of storage space. So people who have a small or medium lawn might think it is too much. However, it works amazing and comes with great quality.

Buy from Amazon.com

 

 

 

7. Craftsman Z560 Briggs & Stratton Platinum Lawn Mower

 

The Z560 is a great ZTR mower that you will enjoy very much, especially if you are looking for a powerful engine that has a wide cutting deck. This product has a 54-inch cutting deck that also comes with deck wash included. It helps you clip, cut and trim your lawn quicker due to its speed but also due to its size.

As you probably know, the spots that are harder to cut make you lose a lot of time due to the fact that you have to turn the mower around and redo the job on that part. To help you reduce the time doing that, Craftsman has provided this product with a mow-in-reverse technology that will make your job easier.

You can also change the cutting direction really easily due to the 360-degree turning radius. The wheels of this tractor are strong and durable and the chair has a high-seat that will make you trim the grass in a more comfortable position.

Pros

The fact that you can mow in reverse is great because it reduces the time you spend working and it reduces the stress that you might get by just thinking that your job is hard to do.

The time you spend mowing the lawn will also be reduced due to the 360-degree turning radius.

It is perfect for large lawns because it has a really powerful engine. It is also really comfortable and you will be able to spend the time you mow in a really comfortable position.

It is made of high-quality materials and has a Ready Start system that will help you become more efficient while performing the job.

 

Cons

The deck is 54 inches wide, so the mower is wider than other similar products and it takes more storage space. However, the fact that the deck is wider will help you finish the job faster than with a smaller mower.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

 

 

 

8. Troy Bilt TB46 Briggs & Stratton Intek Automatic Riding Lawnmower

 

Troy-Bilt is a company that is really popular among the farming landscape in the US and has a long history when it comes to high-quality products. Due to the company’s experience of recognizing clients’ needs, over time it has produced a lot of riding lawn mowers and this model is one of them.

It has a powerful engine of 19 HP and 540cc, which makes it suitable for large lawns. The cutting deck is 46 inches wide and it is made of durable materials. It has 5 levels of cutting which you can adjust according to your individual needs.

It has a step-thru frame that makes it easy for you to get on and off the tractor. It also has a comfortable padded chair that will allow you to rest while you mow the lawn. It also has the capability of mowing in reverse to help you finish the job faster.

Pros

This product has a powerful engine that will allow you to perform hard work in a large field, so if you have a big land, this product is perfect for you.

The deck is wide and does the job a lot quicker than other similar products. The product also has a deck wash. Also, the wheels are sturdy enough to handle a maximum speed of 5.2 miles per hour. 

The step-thru frame is a great feature because stepping on and off the mower will be a lot easier. This will make your experience of riding it more comfortable and will also save you time. The steering wheel is soft, an aspect that also adds comfort.

 

Cons

If the seat would have been high-back, this product would have had the ultimate comfort levels. However, it still provides comfort, is really easy to use and will help you do a great job.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

 

 

 

Our Comprehensive Buying Guide

 

Mowing the lawn is one of those things that we have to do, but don’t really enjoy doing. Over time, the ways of mowing lawn have evolved. We are sure that if you are reading this article, you have decided that you don’t want to be miserable while doing it anymore and want to upgrade your life.

If you haven’t had a riding lawn mower before, you should know that not all of them are the same and that you have to take into consideration some aspects that are essential to be able to enjoy all the benefits of owning one.

 

Lawnmower types

The most important thing to know is that riding lawn mowers are of three types: lawn tractors, zero turning radius mowers, or ZTR, and rear engine riding mowers.

 

Lawn tractors

These lawn mowers are perfect for large lawns because they cut a lot faster than other types of mowers. Manufacturers say that lawn tractors are 2 times quicker than push mowers. These are not cheap riding lawn mowers; however, if you want to make your work less tiring and spend your time more efficiently, these products will make you really happy.

They come with a lot of benefits. For example, they can help you with mulching, bagging, and you can also discharge the clippings on the sides. You will love them because they have steering wheels and driving them is a lot like driving a car. They are really easy to use and also make you feel really comfortable.

They are really strong and robust and have the capacity to do great amounts of hard work. However, if you don’t have a large field, a lawn tractor might not be the best choice for you because the bagging kits can cost more than others for similar products.

 

Zero turning radius mowers (ZTR)

This type of lawn mower resembles a lawn tractor but you don’t use a steering wheel to turn it, but a zero-turn using two levers. They are a lot faster than tractors and you can make more agile moves while you are using them. 

Most ZTR mowers use gas for power and are perfect for lawns that have trees and obstacles because you can handle and maneuver them really easily, you can even make 360-degree turns using them. They are used by landscapers just for this reason.

Because these are among the best riding lawn mower models, they are also among the most expensive. However, they are not always the best at saving time because you might want to go over some areas if you are a perfectionist.

 

Rear engine riding mowers

These little mowers are the connection between tractors and walk-behind mowers. They are affordable riding lawn mowers and do a good job; however, they do not cut as well as tractors and do not do their job as quickly as ZTR mowers. They are great for small lawns and are really easy to store because they are relatively small.

If you decide to buy a rear engine riding mower you should consider the fact that you might have to pass at least twice to make sure that everything is well-cut.

Engine considerations

What you will not probably see in most riding lawn mower reviews is the engine displacement. You should know that lawn tractors have one between 420cc and 747cc, ZTR mowers between 452cc and 810cc, and rear engine mowers between 190cc and 500cc.

 

Landscape needs

As we have previously said, the size of your lawn is really important because that is a factor that determines what type of mower you need. 

For lawns that have a larger size than half an acre, you should use a tractor mower. ZTR mowers are perfect for the same size, but the land has to be relatively flat, or at least not have too many hills, and the rear engine ones should be used for lawns that are between half an acre and 1 acre.

 

Comfort

Comfort is really important when talking about the best riding lawn mower. A high-back seat will make a great difference when talking about how well you feel while performing this action and a cup holder will make you feel like you are in the cinema, watching a nature documentary which is your actual lawn.

A cheap riding lawn mower will not have these advantages so if you don’t want to invest much but still enjoy some comfort, pick an affordable riding lawn mower that will do the job really well when it comes to efficiency.

 

Engine efficiency

When you drive your riding mower, it is really important to know how much fuel you have got left. A good riding lawn mower review will tell you if you have the ability to check the fuel level, which is really important to avoid going fuel-free when you least expect it.

Also, there are some products that tell you how much time has passed since you have last changed the oil and for how many miles you have been using it. The most advanced products will connect to your smartphone via an app to let you know when you have to change the oil to keep your engine healthy.

There is also a feature that most of the new models have and that will help you maintain a long life for the belt, and that is the electric power takeoff switch. It will help you turn the blades on and off with just a click, without being forced to use a lever as the old models did.

Automatic drive

When you have an automatic drive, it is easier for you to be able to control the speed according to your terrain needs. This is why some manufacturers use an automatic drive which is usually activated with a pedal, making it easier for you. You will be able to save a lot of time and energy if you choose a product that has this feature.

 

The tires

What you have to understand is that riding mowers are used on uneven terrains and not on the road. This is why the tires don’t have to have the same features as the ones on your car have. The dimensions are really important so that when you go up on a hill your mower will not fall or slip.

Pay attention to the instructions in the instruction manual, where every manufacturer has to specify at which angle you will be able to ride your mower. The tires have to be robust and also you have to consult the manual and see when you need to get a check-up and which are the situations that require you to change them.

 

As a conclusion

This is pretty much all you have to know to be able to make a decision when it comes to what type of riding lawn mower suits you best. Our reviews have all the information you need about every product to help you choose one without any worries.

 

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

 

Q: How do you ride a lawn mower?

If you have never used this type of mower before, you should know that riding one is not as hard as it might seem, on the contrary. Riding mowers are basically small tractors that have wheels, a steering wheel or levers, depending on the type of mower you have, and a comfortable seat. Of course, it is comfortable if you choose a high-quality product.

It also has an engine that provides energy to the blades and wheels, so, it is obvious that after you jump on, you have to start the engine. Depending on the model, you have to use a key or push a pedal.  

After that everything is pretty simple. You will be able to move forward and backward, just like you do with a car, and some of them allow you to turn in place. You will also be able to stop the blades from working so that you can safely move around.

Q: Why should you buy a lawn mower?

Buying a lawn mower is a great choice for almost everyone who owns a field and wants to keep it looking good and weed-free. If you have a small backyard you might not see the reason behind it, but lawn mowing is a lot easier when you do it automatically.

The first and most important aspect is that it saves a lot of time. If you think about the fact that different types of lawn mowers do the job quicker than others, imagine how faster a lawn mower can be compared to someone doing the job by hand.

Secondly, it makes the job less tiring. If you think of riding lawn mowers, you sit in a chair and maybe enjoy a coffee while the mower does the job. It saves time and energy, two aspects that are really important when it comes to upgrading the way you take care of your lawn.

 

Q: How can lawn mowers keep your grass healthy?

It is really important to mow your lawn frequently simply because the clippings are really good for the soil. They transform into natural fertilizer and feed the grass which will become healthier, thicker and will have a more beautiful color. If you don’t mow the lawn regularly, the clippings will gather and will not allow the grass to breathe properly.

Tall grass also allows pests to thrive and these can attack its health. Lawn mowers are great because you can usually choose the tallness at which you want to leave the grass. This is great because not cutting the grass too short is also a good practice that leaves more room for photosynthesis which helps the grass grow healthier

While mowing the grass you also get rid of weeds that have no place in a healthy lawn. If you have a good lawn mower you will not have to ask for the help of a professional team and you will be able to take care of the health of your lawn by yourself.

 

 

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