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Posted on 27th Mar 2011 @ 11:44 AM
Lawnmowers today are stylish as well as functional. How do you choose the right lawnmower? When it comes time to choose, consider the size and condition of your lawn in addition to your budget. Consider also who will be using the lawnmower. Models range from lightweight with few moving parts to heavy and motorized. Be sure you understand how to operate the lawnmower and can operate it before purchasing. Costs quoted here are general averages. Prices tend to vary according to retailer and area.
Manual-reel Lawnmowers. Suitable for: flat, small lawns, one-quarter of an acre or less.
Quiet, less costly than other models and non-polluting. They're simple machines. The act of pushing the lawnmower spins curved blades, cutting the grass. While these lawnmowers don't cost much to purchase or operate, they aren't good for cutting grass that is more than one and a half inches tall. Reel lawnmowers are not good for edging and tend to be narrow, meaning you'll have to make more trips around the lawn to cut all the grass. Occasional blade sharpening and blade adjustment are necessary. Reel lawnmowers will cut as long as you have the time and energy to push them. There's no stopping to fill the gas tank. They store easily and do not take up much space.
Cost: From $100 to around $500.
Push Style Electric Lawnmowers. Suitable for: flat, small lawns, one-quarter of an acre or less.
Rotating, motorized blades are powered by a electric motor. Available in cordless and corded styles. Like reel lawnmowers, they produce no exhaust and don't require much maintenance other than occasional sharpening. Optional accessories include rear or side grass-catchers. Some electric lawnmowers have mulching capabilities. These lawnmowers lack the power of gasoline driven lawnmowers and therefore do not always cut tall or thick grass well. The cutting swath, or path, of electric lawnmowers tends to be narrow, 18 - 19 inches.
Corded electric lawnmowers require close proximity to an electrical outlet and paying close attention so you do not accidentally run over the power cord with the lawnmower. Cordless electric lawnmowers are often heavy. Their batteries must be recharged regularly, often after mowing no more than one-quarter to one-third of an acre.
Cost: Cordless, $500 and up. Corded, $175 and up.
Gasoline-powered Push Style Lawnmowers. Suitable for: lawns larger than a half-acre.
Available in push or self-propelled models. Gas models require regular maintenance and some are noisy enough that hearing protection is suggested when using them. Powerful engines and wider cutting paths allow you to cut more grass in less time. These lawnmowers will run as long as there's gas in the tank and you have the energy to operate them. Consider where you'll store the lawnmower when it's not in use.
Gas lawnmowers are available featuring different discharge modes. Some catch clippings in a catcher, some spew them out from the side of the cutter, and some mulch, cutting everything up into small enough pieces to leave on the lawn.
Push lawnmowers are suitable for flat lawns or for edging and trimming where larger riding lawnmowers can't go. Self-propelled lawnmowers are suitable for large lawns, including those that aren't flat. Before operating a self-propelled lawnmower, make sure the operator can control the lawnmower. Some self-propelled lawnmowers are quite powerful.
Cost: Push lawnmower, $200 and up. Self-propelled lawnmower, $400 an up.
Gasoline-powered Riding Lawnmowers
Suitable for large lawns. Riding lawnmowers require regular maintenance. They also require some driving skill. Those with physical or health problems that leave them unable to operate riding lawnmowers should not use them. When looking at riding lawnmowers, be sure to try them for size. Take a seat on the mower. Can you reach all the necessary controls? Can you operate the clutch? Move the various levers?
How do you plan to use the mower? Do you plan to catch clippings or mulch? Consider the size of the lawnmower itself. Is it too large to maneuver around your landscaping? If you do a lot of landscaping, consider purchasing the optional towing cart.
Lawnmowers are available in many styles and sizes. From small get-the-job-done models to large zero-turn wide deck models, there's something for every lawn owner. Don't forget to consider where you'll store the mower. Riding mowers range in size from small to quite large. Storage options include covering the mower with a ready-made tarp style cover or parking the mower in an enclosed area. Optional attachments: grass catcher, towing cart, seed spreader, snow blade, and more.
Cost: $1500 and up.
Lawnmowers today are stylish as well as functional. From environmental friendly manual reel lawnmowers to large lawnmowers with a host of available attachments, there's a mower for every lawn and budget. When shopping for a lawnmower, take your time. Consider the size and layout of your lawn and the physical condition of the mower operator before producing cash or a credit card. Be sure to follow safety precautions when operating your new mower.