What to Consider When Buying a Push Mower

What do you need to know when buying a push mower? We'll make it simple. Read about the features to consider when in the market for a lawn mower.

Push Mowers: How to Buy the Best One

Homeowners understand the importance of shopping around before making a major purchase. The costs of maintaining a house and lawn seem never-ending, and everyone wants to feel confident that they’ve chosen the best value for their money. Before choosing a push mower, homeowners should consider a variety of aspects when comparing models and finalizing their purchases.

What Important Push Mower Safety Features to look for

Operating a push mower should always be approached with care, and users should always make sure they’re seeking to buy models with safety features included. Luckily, many of today’s push mowers have multiple safety features built into the machine.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission lists standard safety features that all push mowers should have, which includes a blade brake control, a foot shield, and a series of safety labels. These features are considered standard safety features in a push mower and should be present on any machine.

Another part of push mower safety a potential buyer should consider is ensuring they able to physically operate the machine. Unlike riding mowers, push mowers demand more physical exertion from the user to operate properly. If a user with health limitations is interested in a push mower, he or she should consider the amount of effort it would require to mow their lawns before deciding on the purchase.

How to choose between Gas-Powered versus Electric-Powered Mowers

Push mowers can be electric or gas-powered, and both varieties produce excellent lawn cutting results. However, there are some major differences between the two that could determine a better mowing experience for users, depending on their lawn’s needs.

Gas-powered mowers are usually wise choices for larger lawns. The fuel tanks are capable of holding enough gasoline to power through an entire mowing session without taking multiple breaks to refuel. Electric-powered mowers tend to be a good choice for smaller, suburban lawns because they’re able to hold a charge long enough to complete the job without stopping for multiple breaks to recharge the battery. Some electric mower batteries can take a considerable amount of time to charge, potentially leaving users with hours between mowing sessions.

Some buyers may be concerned with how their push mower impacts the environment. For example, gas-powered mowers emit pollutants associated with fuel-burning engines. Electric push mowers do not emit these pollutants, eliminate the need to purchase fuel and filters, and are able to turn on with the flip of a switch. Electric push mowers are generally much quieter than their gas-powered counterparts.

How to choose between Corded versus Cordless Electric Push Mowers

Electric push mowers can be purchased with corded or cordless power sources, and both types offer a variety of advantages and disadvantages for buyers to consider.

Cordless push mowers are generally much heavier than corded ones because they include a battery. While the battery allows the user freedom to move around the lawn without worrying about a cord, the corded versions are more lightweight due to the lack of battery bulk.

Cordless push mowers also require the user to remember to charge the battery before attempting to mow the lawn. Corded push mowers allow the flexibility to plug in the machine and begin mowing without any pre-planning involved. However, corded push mowers also require an outlet to operate and, depending on the lawn’s size, may require extension cords to reach all areas of the grass.

Corded push mowers are often less expensive than cordless push mowers because they don’t require a special battery to operate. Also, because batteries and charging systems can wear out over time, cordless push mowers may eventually require replacement batteries, adding to the maintenance costs.

What Efficiency Features to consider

All push mower varieties have different features that make them more efficient, and buyers can determine which efficiency features are best for them during the shopping process.

Some examples of push mower efficiency features include:

  • Dual Battery Systems, which allow battery-powered mowers to operate for longer periods of time between charges
  • No-Prime Engines, which allow gas-powered mowers to start quicker and easier
  • Variable Speeds, which allows users to adjust the speed of a self-propelled mower to their comfort level
  • Blade Brake Clutches, which allow the user to stop the blades from spinning so the grass collection bags can be emptied without powering down the whole mower
  • Deck Wash Ports, which allow users to connect a hose directly to the mower and flush out any residual grass clippings from underneath the machine without needing to turn it over

Resources— U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, SFGate, Lowes

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