Lawn Mower Buying Guide
The first step to a healthy and beautiful yard is having the right lawn mower, whether it’s a riding lawn mower, electric mower, or something in between. Use our Lawn Mower Buying Guide so you can landscape a lush and beautiful yard.
“Zero-turn” refers to a sub-type of lawn mowers and tractors that’s specially designed to cut very close to obstacles (e.g., flower beds, rocks, trees) so you don't have to trim all those corners and edges! And no uncut grass gets left behind thanks to tighter angle turns.
Lawn Mower Tips and Tricks
General Use FAQ
When possible, avoid cutting grass after a heavy rain. It increases the chances of slipping. Grass clippings can also clump together and negatively affect the blades.
Wear steel-toed boots, or close-toed shoes at the very least. Also wear protective glasses in case any clippings or debris fly up at you.
The best practice is to cut 1/3 of the grass’s height at a time. Shallow cutting can expose the roots and increase the chance of lawn disease.
When appropriate, it is recommended that grass clippings be mulched and left to decompose rather than bagged and discarded. This can help improve soil quality and mineral content, which, in turn, can improve the health of your grass.
Avoid mowing your lawn after long periods of drought. Grass can get frail and cutting it can further reduce moisture content and negatively affect the health of your lawn.
No one cutting pattern is better than another. The important thing is to vary patterns from time to time to avoid ruts in the lawn and to promote uniform growth.
Many maintenance tips will be specific to the mower and included in the manual, but generally always check for low oil levels, air filter quality, blade tension, secureness, and sharpness.
Position your mower on its side, but in a way that directs the carburetor upwards to discourage fuel or oil from entering and clogging the carburetor.
When using your lawn mower for the first time after storage, always be sure to change the oil and check the spark plug before use. When checking the spark plug, look for sediment or carbon deposits between the spark plug contact points. Consult your manual for information on the proper spacing requirement for your mower. If carbon is present, remove it with fine grit sandpaper until bare metal is visible again.
When taking your lawn mower out of storage and using it for the first time, be sure to check the air filter quality, fuel and fuel filter quality, and blade sharpness.
When putting away your lawn mower for the season, place it in a dry area to limit corrosion and rust. If a completely dry area is unavailable, be sure to place it in an area where moisture exposure is limited.
Regardless of location, place a barrier (e.g., garbage bag, newspaper) between the mower and the ground so any leaking fuels or oils don’t affect the surface beneath.
Before storage, be sure to fill the tank with a mixture of fuel and fuel stabilizer to limit fuel separation, oxidation, and moisture-induced corrosion. You may also want to consider premixed fuel that can be left in the engine all year long.
Clean any clumped or stuck clippings from underneath the mower (mower deck) before putting your lawn mower into storage.
How do you choose the right fertilizer? It can get very confusing. Learn which nutrients to look for and what alternatives to consider for a perfect lawn and garden. Check it out
Create a perfect lawn with a grass trimmer. Ideal for lawn edging, explore our collection of string trimmers in our Grass Trimmers Buying Guide.