The joggers are finding their mark early in the dawn, the weather is sweltering from inside and lo, your lawn is growing. The bold writing on the wall is you are in need of a lawn mower. But this does not have to be a separate chore given the exorbitant number of walk-behind or push lawn mowers now available for sale. There is no point investing in a riding lawn mower is you have a small or mid-size lawn. A better choice would be a decent push land mower that can easily be maneuvered about the place.
Caring for your lawn is important. And that brings us to some of the most effective lawn mowing tools available now. Take a look.
What is a lawn mower?
A lawn mower is a blade-operation based machine that is used to cut or shape grass surfaces evenly. While the height of the resultant grass generally depends on the mower design, most manufacturers now include cut-length variations in a single model. This is done either by a master lever or through a nut-bolt mechanism on each of the wheels of the machine. The blades can be powered through muscle, battery or electricity. In the manually powered mowers, the blade is attached with the wheels and a push from the mower causes spin-movement in the blades. Most modern mowers have a cylinder or an internal combustion engine that powers the blade movement.
Types of lawn mowers:
1. Depending on rotation: There are two rotation based classifications of lawn mowers.
- Cylinder or reel mowers:
A reel or cylinder lawn mower is a simple machine akin to a pair of manual scissors. The functionality is achieved through 12 exposed blades that rotate on a horizontal axis. Grass blades are trapped against a fixed plate in the mower. They are subsequently chopped by the blades horizontally.
- Rotary mowers:
These lawn mowers draw power from electric or petrol engines. Most electricity-driven mowers are connected to a power source through an electric cord. In these lawn-mowers a single rotational high-speed blade rotates around a vertical axis to skim through grass. The chopping motion results in cutting of the grass. A collection box at the rear is used to collect the grass.
2. Depending on energy source
- Gasoline (petrol):
Most of the rotary or push land mowers work with the help of an internal combustion engine that are usually four-stroke. These engines provide superior torque. The combustion engines are typically single-cylinder based. The generated power may vary between 2 HP and 7 HP.
Available only as corded mowers until sometime back, the electrical mowers are now divided into cordless and corded. These are remarkably quieter than the gasoline mowers, barely exceeding the 75 decibel mark even with the most powerful electrical mowers. The movement of cordedmowers can be limited through the length of the cord.
- By hand:
The hand-mower or the manual mower is more like an old-school pioneer that has lost much of its popularity to the electrical and gasoline mowers. But these mowers are still available for those who like to push their work through the grass. The blade reel is connected to the wheels, which manually move to spin the blades.
3. Other notable types: Here are some other notable mowers apart from the conventional types.
- Hover mowers:
The hover mower derives its name from the mechanism through which the grass is chopped off. An impeller is used atop the spinning blades so that the air is driven downward. This creates an air cushion between the mower and grass. These mowers are lightweight with plastic bodies and single electrical motors.
- Robotic mowers:
Robotic mowers work within a perimeter wire, which is also the programmed definition of the area to be covered by the mower. The robotic mechanism depends on this wired perimeter to locate all areas to be mowed and at times to locate a charging dock. These high-performance mowers can maintain 4-5 acres of grass.
- Tractor pulled mowers:
These are heavy duty mowers and are generally available as attachments for regular or specialized tractors. The attachments of the mower can function either by the physical movement of the vehicle or through self-moving blades powered by a separate motor. These mowers are generally side or rear-mounted to tractors.
- Riding mowers:
These mowers are great for larger lawns. The operator uses the machine both as a mower and a car and literally rides atop the device while controlling the mowing functions. Most such mowers have a number of horizontal or rotating blades. The lawn tractor is a common manifestation of the riding mower.
- Mulching mowers:
Some rotary mowers are available with special mulching blades. These blades function underneath the mower and continue clipping the grass until it shortens to a desired length. In some other designs, a twin-blade system is integrated to the mower to achieve even smaller clippings.
Top 5 recommendations
1. GreenWorks 25022 12 Amp Corded 20-Inch Lawn Mower
The GreenWorks 25022 Corded 20-inch, 12-Amp lawn mower is comes across as a powerful, grass-hating tool that has enough steam to drive through the toughest greens. An integrated 20-inch long cutting deck completes the exercise quicker and with added efficiency. You may choose side discharge or rear bagging the grass clippings with the 3-in-1 feature blade of the mower. 7 different height adjustments offer a range between 1 1/2-inch and 3 3/4-inch, creating perfect cuts for lawns with varying grass lengths. The rear wheels and front wheels are wide at 10 inches and 7 inches each and the mulching plug hides in the rear discharge cover.
- Aerodynamic and sleek contours.
- Multiple height and blade adjustments.
- Large front and rear wheels for easy maneuvering.
- Easy unpack and use pancaking.
- Ideal for mid-size lawns.
- Isolated Fuse tripping issues.
- Not compatible with 100’ extension cord.
2. GreenWorks 25142 10 Amp Corded 16-Inch Lawn Mower
The GreenWorks 25142 10 Amp is a thoughtfully designed lawn mower that is built for home lawn use. Like other similar mid-size mowers by GreenWorks, the product is fuelled by a 10 Amp electric motor that virtually tonks through tough grass. The USP of the mower could easily be the 16 inches long cutting deck that gets the pace rolling in a streamlined manner. Rear discharge and mulching capabilities have beenincluded as stock features by the manufacturer. You can manage perfect cuts on nearly all grass types with the 5 position adjustment in height that facilitates cutting heights between 5/8 inches and 2-5/8 inches. The rear and front wheels measure 7 and 6 inches respectively.
- Extra-long warranty.
- All-grass compatibility.
- Lightweight and portable.
- Zero assembly.
- Quiet, noiseless function.
- Slightly small grass collecting bag.
- Not moisture friendly.
3. Husqvarna 7021P 21-Inch 160cc Honda GCV160
The Husqvarna 7321p is a 21-inch push lawn mower with a 160cc GVC160 engine by Honda. The first look at the device build tells you the mower is meant for use in small yards. Standard features like a 3-in-1 mulch cutting system, side discharge column and a rear bag make for the regular column sections. The special feature-maneuver is injected by the 12-inch rear wheels, which are pretty large for small lawn mowers. The wheels facilitate most of the terrain variety that Honda has been boasting of the product. The long and adjustable handle takes the ergonomics and portability of the device a few notches higher.
- Power-cutting attitude.
- 160cc Honda engine for added power.
- Available side discharge.
- Fuel additives not required.
- Large wheels for greater maneuverability.
- Separate engine and device warranties.
- Substandard packaging.
4. WORX WG782 14-Inch 24-Volt Cordless Lawn Mower
The WORK WG782 impresses with an adjustable lawn mowing height between 1.8 and 3.3 inches and has a cutting width of 14 inches. The special mulching blades integrated by the company facilitate better cutting prowess on tough grass compared to standard mower blades. The device starts with a simple one-push button and there the much sought-after 3-in-1 facility of bagging, mulching and rear discharge is also included. The driving of the equipment is the IntelliCut technology that adds torque to the device every time the grass gets tougher. The WG782 can work up to 40 minutes on a single charge, mowing through 10,000 sq ft of grass.
- Intellicut for tougher grass.
- 14-inch cutting width.
- Cordless operation for enhanced mane uverability.
- Tool-less assembly.
- Great value for money.
- Not great for over 2-feet long grass.
- Charge may fall short for too large lawns.
5. GreenWorks 25322 G-MAX 40V Li-Ion 16-Inch
The GreenWorks 25322 G-MAX runs on a 40V Li-ion battery system. The kit also comes with a 1-4Ah charger and battery to complete the work system. The 5 position height-adjusting feature of the device rides on a single lever. An amazing mowing range of 1-1/4 inches to 3-3/8 inches offers mowing compatibility for a variety of terrains. Mulching capability is built in the device along with a rear bag, promoting multiple uses. The cutting deck measuring 16 inches facilitates effective mowing through most mid-size yards. 6-inches wide front wheels and 7-inches wide rear wheels make for super-easy maneuvering throughout the lawn.
- Excellent maneuverability for active mowers.
- Effortless mowing even for seniors.
- Quick assembly, easy charging.
- Quiet functionality.
- Occasional ragged cutting near edges.
- Toe guard rubber too flexible.
What should I look for a lawn mower under 300?
- Correct size:
The size of the mower is important. You will ideally want to work with a device that does not strain your back, yet gets you enough power to drive through the lawn effortlessly. The maneuverability of the mower is heavily dependent on the front and rear wheel sizes as well.
- Quality cutting blades:
The quality of the blades has a huge say in the result the mower achieves for you. While many different mower types use different quality blades, the mulching twin type blade is one that most manufacturers prefer. Also, you should note that the quality of blades also depends on the mode of power.
- Perfect style for me:
This is where you should adopt a subjective approach. If you have a stiff back, there is no point going for a hand-wielding mower. It would also not be advisable to buy a tractor or riding mower for a 1500 sqft lawn. Most mid-size lawn owners enjoy a great variety-cushion in lawn mowers.
- Adequate sized grass collector:
Collection of grass is an important aspect for most lawn mowers, yet is often neglected by several manufacturers. Most portable mid-size mowers have rear and side collection facilities and some are equipped with a large collection bag at the rear. Make sure your mower does not require you to leave the lawn often to empty the nag.
- High tech batteries:
For battery operated mowers, there is really no point is choosing low battery yields. Most manufacturers are pretty relentless on stressing upon the battery performance of the mower. In ideal circumstances, you should not make do with anything lesser than 40 minutes of mowing. That would suffice for most medium sized lawns.
- Easy driving control:
When riding a mower, all you should worry about is the settings and adjustments that lead to different results on the grass. The driving controls must be as simplified as possible. While most riding mowers are savvy about ensuring this, there are some that can potentially complicate your mowing experience. Avoid them.
- Air filter:
The air filter in a lawn mower prevents dust and other contaminants from reaching the inner parts, particularly the gas chamber and engine of the mower. When choosing a lawn mower below 300, you should ensure that the air filter is accessible and can be cleaned on a regular basis.
- Wash out fittings:
A typical lawn mower will come with several fittings that can be washed after each or many uses. Check on these fittings before buying the product. Ask the retailer if these are replaceable.
- Warranty and support:
The warranty and support of the land mower must be vetted properly before purchase. With some products, there is variable warranty for the product as a whole and the engine. Understanding these technicalities is important before buying the mower.
On the whole, buying a lawn mower under $300 should not be a difficult exercise as long as you are ready to make an informed decision. Do not be entirely dependent on adverts and make lawn mower reviews an integral part of your decision. Check on the available options and keep a keen eye on the discounts available at different stores, including the internet.
Given the exquisite range of lawn mowers available under 300, you should not have too bad a time looking for the one that will shape your lawn for many days to come!