The Best Zero-Turn Mowers That Easily Tackle A Large Yard
Every lawn is different and, with that, you need a mower that meets your needs. If you have trees and flower beds smattered around your yard, it’s a good idea to consider a zero-turn mower. The best zero-turn mowers allow you to effortlessly cruise around landscaping and other lawn obstacles while delivering a quality cut. Our top pick is the Ryobi 54-Inch Electric Riding Zero Turn Mower for its high adjustability and 3.5-acre capacity.
The Ryobi 54-Inch Electric Riding Zero Turn Mower effortlessly cruises around lawns up to 3.5 acres.
Zero-turn mowers allow you to pivot inside your machine’s footprint, making them a solid choice for people who want a precise cut, despite having a yard that’s not just grass. “Zero-turn mowers allow you to maneuver swiftly around your yard, easily avoiding structures and obstacles in the mower’s path and significantly reducing the amount of time it takes to get the job done,” says Marty Grunder of Grunder Landscaping in Miamisburg, Ohio. “They also offer a comfortable ride, and as you learn how to operate them proficiently, you will become more efficient at mowing your lawn.” They also “work great in yards that have a lot of curves or obstacles,” says Mallory Micetich, home expert at Angi.
There are a few factors to consider when choosing a zero-turn mower, including whether you want an electric lawn mower or one that’s powered by gas, the cutting deck size and how much lawn you need to cut. Naturally, your budget plays a role in the final decision, too. These are the best zero-turn mowers on the market to help you get that precise cut in as little time as possible. (While you’re at it, consider our list of the best push mowers.)
Best American Made Lawn Mowers (actually made in USA)
With so many lawn mower manufacturers in the world, it can be hard for homeowners to choose the best brand to purchase from. One thing that might factor into your decision is where the lawn mowers are made. Today, I’ll reveal the best American made lawn mowers.
Even if a company is based in a foreign country, they might still assemble their mowers in America, and today I’ll be focusing on the best American made lawn mower brands to consider if where your mower is manufactured matters to you.
|LawnChick.com is reader supported. If you make a purchase after clicking a link, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.|
The Best American Made Lawn Mower Brands
Here is my list of great brands that manufacture or assemble lawn mowers in the United States.
- Honda, based in Tokyo (headquarters in Georgia, USA)
- John Deere, based in America
- Troy Bilt, based in America
- Cub Cadet, based in America
Be aware that not all of their mowers are made in the United States, but many of them are. If you specifically want an American made lawn mower, find out where each individual model is made before you make your purchase.
It’s also important to know that while there are many mowers which are assembled in the USA, some of these will include parts manufactured elsewhere.
In today’s global economy this is pretty common, and doesn’t necessarily mean that they are of lower quality.
You can still take pride in knowing that your mower was built in America if you see “Assembled in America” on its serial number sticker.
That means American hands put your mower together piece by piece, and that your dollars are contributing to the US economy by supporting the American factory where the mower was built.
The following article is a more detailed look at each of the brands mentioned above, as well as their most popular mowers.
Honda – Based in Tokyo, Mower Headquarters in Georgia
One of the most well-known car companies in the world, Honda also makes lawn mowers.
Honda Power Equipment is headquartered in Alpharetta, Georgia. It’s where pretty much all of the 21-inch push and self-propelled Honda lawn mowers sold here in the United States are built.
Honda Power Equipment has been building mowers here in the USA since 1979.
Their lawn mowers are known for starting quickly, lasting for a long time, and requiring very little maintenance, which is why I’m the proud owner of one.
One feature that makes these benefits possible is the two blade cutting system their mowers have. This helps reduce wear and tear on the blades and the engine, increasing longevity and decreasing maintenance costs.
The main disadvantage of Honda mowers is that they can be pretty expensive. Their walk behind mowers definitely cost more than some of their competitors.
That said, they’re excellent, and if you can afford one it’s what I recommend. I own and use a 21″ self propelled Honda mower I purchased from The Home Depot, and it has been going strong for 9 years with no issue thanks to some basic spring mower maintenance each year and winterizing my mower properly each fall.
I also use ethanol-free gas called TruFuel which you can purchase online or in-store from Ace Hardware, The Home Depot, or online from Amazon. It’s more expensive than regular gas, but will keep your engine running clean and won’t go bad if you let it sit in your mower over the winter.
Here are a few of Honda’s most popular models:
Honda 3-in-1 Variable Speed Gas Walk Behind Lawn Mower
Honda’s best selling mower is the 3-in1 Variable Speed Gas Walk Behind Self-Propelled Lawn Mower, and most purchasers like the price. This walk behind mower has a variety of features that make it stand out.
The engine is incredibly powerful and has variable speeds you can adjust, making it very effective but easy to control. It allows you to switch between mulching and bagging very easily with a one step clip director.
Finally, oil and gas changes are simple because you get help measuring the liquids as you pour them, and you have longer gas/oil lines.
It’s ideal for yards that are half an acre to one acre in size, since it’s a relatively small but still powerful mower.
Honda 4-in-1 Gas Walk Behind Self Propelled Lawn Mower
This mower is similar to the previous one, but it allows you to do much more and comes with more features. It has a Roto-Stop blade stop system, as well as variable speed Select Drive.
With its 4-in-1 Versamow System with Clip Director, this machine means you can mow as well as leaf shred, discharge, mulch, and bag.
John Deere – Based in the USA
John Deere is a USA homegrown veteran in the lawn mower manufacturing business. Most John Deere tractor mowers are American made.
They’re assembled in the United States, mostly using American-made parts.
First releasing mowers in 1963, they have built up a reputation for delivering high quality riding mowers that can tackle any yard work issue.
But you definitely get your money’s worth for how durable they are and how diverse their features are.
John Deere S120 42-Inch Deck 22 HP Hydro Lawn Tractor
One of John Deere’s most popular products is the John Deere S120 42-Inch Deck 22 HP Hydro Lawn Tractor. You can rest assured that it’s built in the USA.
Yes, this is a big investment, but if you’ve got an enormous property, a lawn tractor may be what you need.
This lawn tractor features the top-notch performance of a 22 HP V-twin John Deere branded engine. You’ll find oil changes only take about 30 seconds with this mower, as it includes the John Deer Easy Change System.
John Deere S240 Lawn Tractor with 48-inch Deck
Another best selling mower from John Deere is the S240 Lawn Tractor with a 48-inch Deck. This made in the USA mower has a very powerful engine with a 48 inch deck that cuts grass easily and performs versatile functions.
The automatic drive transmission gives you multiple speed choices so you can mow small and large lawns easily.
This mower is the most expensive one on this list, but it’s extremely durable and able to tackle multiple different yard work tasks.
From cutting grass, to mulching, to removing snow, this mower offers a comfortable all-in-one tool for yard work.
Troy-Bilt – Based in the USA
Troy-Bilt is a slightly lesser known manufacturer, but their mowers are high quality and able to perform multiple different jobs.
This company mainly designs mowers for smaller yards, and it has surprisingly affordable prices.
The only downside is that Troy-Bilt mowers aren’t the best for large lawns, as they are designed for lawns that are half an acre to one acre in size.
But if multiple people are working on one large lawn, you might find that Troy-Bilt mowers are a great inexpensive option.
Troy-Bilt 21-Inch 140 cc Briggs Stratton Gas Push Lawn Mower
Built in the United States from American-made parts, the Troy-Bilt 21-Inch Gas Push Lawn Mower uses a tri-action cutter to easily and evenly cut your grass.
This is an affordable mower option that is great for small properties. It has 11-inch rear wheels that make it easy to mow a variety of terrains.
With a Prime ‘N Pull 140 cc Briggs and Stratton engine, this Troy-Bilt mower starts quickly and easily. You always get evenly cut grass because this machine has the brands TriAction cutting system.
Troy-Bilt 17 HP Gas Pony 42K Riding Lawn Mower
If you want a tractor mower but don’t want to spend a fortune, consider the Troy-Bilt 17 HP Gas Pony 42K Riding Lawn Mower. It’s one of the most affordable ones on the market.
This riding mower features a 17HP Kohler engine so that you’ll get excellent performance even in more challenging weather.
Like the other mowers I’ve listed here, this riding lawn mower is USA-made. Another perk is this mower’s Step-Thru frame design. It gives you more leg room.
Cub Cadet – Based in the USA
Last but not least, Cub Cadet. This brand can compete even with John Deere when it comes to mower quality.
Cub Cadet mowers are known for having well designed cutting systems that make having a beautiful lawn easy.
Furthermore, some Cub Cadet mowers include features you don’t typically find in other brands. Cruise control and speed you can control with a pedal are a few examples.
Cub Cadet SC 300 Signature Cut Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
The Cub Cadet SC 300 Signature Cut Self-Propelled Lawn Mower is one of the most powerful push mowers around. It’s also an affordable choice.
This mower features a 173 cc commercial-grade Kohler engine. It’s rear wheels are 11-inches high. That helps you deal with every kind of terrain smoothly. The front-wheel drive is also key to this.
Cub Cadet ZT1-46 KH Zero Turn Mower
The Cub Cadet ZT1-46 KH Zero Turn Mower is a big investment. However, it’s one worth making if you’re looking for this type of riding mower. Made in the USA, this is a great choice for a large property up to two acres.
This riding mower has a 22 HP 725cc Kohler Kt7000 Series Twin-Cylinder Engine. If you have slight or small hills on your property, this mower can deal with them.
It’s easy to get onto the deck of this Cub Cadet riding mower, and you can access the engine easily. I’m a big fan of Cub Cadet’s full line of zero turn mowers.
There Are Many Good American Made Lawn Mowers
As we’ve seen here, each of the brands I talked about above offer a great selection of mowers. These are what I consider to be the best made-in-the-USA mowers.
American made lawn mowers give you peace of mind and pride in buying a made-in-the-USA machine.
Now you know about fantastic mower options that you should consider. Before you go, though, also learn about the lawn mower brands to avoid at all costs.
Cub Cadet Ultima ZTS and ZTXS Zero-Turn Mowers with Steering Wheel
Cub Cadet, owned by Stanley Black Decker, added Synchro-Steer technology (their proprietary steering wheel technology) to its Ultima ZTS Series Zero-turn and commercial ZTXS lawnmower lineup.
Synchro-Steer technology isn’t new. Cub Cadet developed it back in 2009. It replaces traditional lap bars with a familiar steering wheel and a dual foot pedal control scheme. Where it really shines is when mowing wet grass or on inclines. Where a traditional lap bar system relies on the rear wheels for steering (the front wheels are just 360-degree spinning casters), Synchro-Steer works differently. It steers using the front wheels and uses them to determine the speed of each of the rear wheels.
Better Hill Control and Improved Overall Steering
The result is reduced slipping—particularly on hills and inclines—and front wheels that move properly and don’t tend to create ruts in the turf. As an added benefit, the steering wheel on the Cub Cadet Ultima ZTS and ZTXS are designed to be smooth enough for one-handed operation. The system also features an adjustable steering column and a premium cut-and-sewn high-back adjustable seat for a comfortable ride.
Where Do the Cub Cadet Ultima ZTS and ZTXS Fit in the Lineup?
The Cub Cadet Ultima ZTS joins the lap bar-driven Ultima ZT and Ultima Electric ZT mowers. This essentially brings the full array of steering options to the Ultima Series ZT lineup. While some consumers prefer steering wheels for their familiarity over lap bars, pros recognize that the steering wheel actually allows for better control when mowing hilly terrain. You actually get straighter lines and more efficient turning.
Cub Cadet plans to offer the Ultima ZTS Series mowers in two trim levels:
The ZTS1 mower offers 42″, 46″, 50″ and 54″ decks and a 23HP Kohler 7000 Series engine. It uses a Hydro-Gear ZT 2200 transmission.
The ZTS2 adds wider rear tires, armrests for the seat, and 50″, 54″, and 60″ deck sizes. It also includes an upgraded 23HP Kohler 7000 Series PRO engine and a Hydro-Gear ZT 2800 transmission.
Cub Cadet Ultima ZTXS Zero Turn Mowers
The Cub Cadet Ultima ZTXS includes commercial-grade features. It steps up several of the features, including the steering column, engine, frame (1×3 in. tubular steel) deck (10 gauge), speed, seat quality, fuel capacity, wheels, and more. The ZTXS also extends the warranty to 4 years and 800 hours (including commercial use).
Cub Cadet plans to offer the Ultima ZTXS Series mowers in ZTX4 and ZTX5 trim levels with the latter carrying (among other things) a better seat and larger rear tires.
Pricing and Availability
You can find the Ultima ZTS at local Cub Cadet dealerships, select Tractor Supply Co. locations, and online at HomeDepot.com. Retail pricing looks like this:
- ZTS1 42 – 4,599
- Cub Cadet ZTS1 46 – 4,699
- ZTS1 50 – 4,799
- ZTS2 50 – 5,299
- Cub Cadet ZTS2 54 – 5,499
- ZTS2 60 – 5,799
The Ultima ZTXS releases in Spring of 2023. We have the following retail pricing information:
- ZTXS4 48 – 7,499
- Cub Cadet ZTXS4 54 – 7,699
- ZTXS4 60 – 7,899
- ZTXS5 54 – 8,699
- Cub Cadet ZTXS5 60 – 8,899
- ZTXS6 60 – 10,299
When he’s not playing with the latest power tool, Clint DeBoer enjoys life as a husband, father, and avid reader—especially the Bible. He loves Jesus, has a degree in recording engineering, and has been involved in multimedia and/or online publishing in one form or another since 1992.
Clint’s career has covered nearly the entire realm of audio and video production. After graduating at the top of his class with an Associates Degree in Recording Engineering, he began working for the famed Soundelux studios in 1994, one of the largest post-production companies specializing in audio for feature films television. Working on a myriad of feature films, Clint honed his skills as a dialogue editor, foley editor, and sound designer. Years later, he moved into the expanding area of video editing, where he served as the company’s senior AVID video editor for three years. Working for such clients as Universal Pictures, Hollywood Pictures, Paramount Home Entertainment, NASA, Universal Studios, Planet Hollywood, SEGA, NASCAR, and others, Clint DeBoer dealt extensively with client management as well as film video editing, color correction, and digital video MPEG compression. He also carries several THX certifications (Technician I and II, THX Video), and is ISF Level II Certified. After founding the CD Media, Inc. publishing company in 1996, he went on to help start or grow several successful online publications, including Audioholics (as Editor-in-Chief for 12 years), Audiogurus, and AV Gadgets. In 2008, Clint founded Pro Tool Reviews followed by the landscape and outdoor power equipment-focused OPE Reviews in 2017. He also heads up the Pro Tool Innovation Awards, an annual awards program honoring innovative tools and accessories across the trades. Crediting God and his excellent staff for the success of what is now the largest power tool review publication in the industry, Clint DeBoer hopes to see continued growth for the company as it rapidly expands its reach. Pro Tool Reviews critically reviews hundreds of hand tools, power tools, and accessories each year to help inform users about the best and newest products in the industry. Reaching everyone from the construction industry professional and tradesman to the serious DIYer, Pro Tool Reviews helps tool consumers shop better, work smarter, and stay aware of what tools and products can help put them at the top of their game.
Husqvarna Spring Products Showcase
OPE Visits Husqvarna’s North Carolina HQ for an Exclusive Tour I’m not sure what it is about spring 2023, but it seems as though outdoor power tool manufacturers are especially bullish on product line development. Husqvarna is among those brands leading the pack (not surprising considering that they’ve been making various forms of equipment for […]
Solid Steal–The HART Blower Bundle
HART’s 20V 315 CFM Blower, Two Batteries, and a Charger at a Great Price Exclusive to Walmart, HART has made a name for itself within the consumer market thanks to its extensive line of tools and outdoor power equipment. And boy, do they have a deal for you with the HART Blower Bundle! Get a […]
Wisconsin Assembly Outlaws Gas Bans
Gas-powered engines scored a win in Wisconsin’s Republican-controlled Assembly. A pair of bills that conservative Wisconsin lawmakers passed on April 25 would prevent state and local governments from banning gas-fueled vehicles, snow blowers, lawn mowers, and other such equipment. The bill’s GOP sponsors targeted the passage of laws like California’s, requiring that new cars, trucks, […]
Husqvarna Xcite Zero-Turn Mower Review
Husqvarna Xcite Zero-Turn Mowers Bridge the Gap Between Pro and Residential While there’s no shortage of zero-turn lawn mowers on the market, there are those models that perhaps shine a little brighter than others. We think this is the case with the Husqvarna Xcite zero-turn lawn mower series. We had a chance to take both […]
When it comes to achieving the ideal-looking yard, a proper mow is essential. LM has got you covered, with a variety of lawn mowers, attachments, accessories and parts for every need and budget.
Ariens Briggs Stratton Carlisle Cub Cadet Countrywide Tire Rubber DeWALT DR Power Equipment Earthwise Earthquake Exide Technologies Greenworks Gravely Harvest King Honda Husqvarna International Tire Tube K-T Industries STIHL Martin Wheel MTD Products Senix Swisher Troy-Bilt Yard Machines show 15 more show less
Lawn Mowers for Every Need and Budget
Cub Cadet is one of our more popular lawn mower brands thanks to the value, reliability and three-year warranty that come with many of their models. Other popular options include the Husqvarna Riding Tractor; Troy-Bilt, YardMachine or Honda for push options; or go electric with the STIHL Cordless Mower.
Riding Mowers vs Push Powers
If you’re in the market for a new lawn mower, there’s likely one big question on your mind — do you sit back with a riding mower or do you put more manual labor in with a push mower?
Here are the main considerations when deciding between a riding mower vs. a push mower:
- Yard size: In general, anything over a quarter of an acre will likely call for a riding mower. After all, that’s over 10,000 square feet — quite a distance to walk (especially in the heat that can accompany peak lawn care season)!
- Efficiency: The average riding mower can cover triple the amount of ground as a walking mower, and has much more capacity for grass clippings.
- Price: Because riding mowers are larger and offer more power, you’ll be looking at a higher end price, a consideration for your budget.
Shop Cub Cadet Lawn Mowers
As the largest independent Cub Cadet dealer in the nation, we’re proud to supply a full line of these quality lawn mowers, in both push and riding models. Not only do we offer a number of different styles, but we have certified Cub Cadet mechanics stationed at each one of our 10 stores across the upper midwest. In other words, we service what we sell, and look forward to helping you craft the perfect landscape.
Do you service lawnmowers?
Yes. All 10 stores employ certified Cub Cadet mechanics, as well as other service professionals to help your lawn mowers stay in working condition.
Do you sell lawn mowing accessories and parts?
Yes. LM Fleet Supply is your go-to lawn mower headquarters, offering a number of electrical, mechanical and bagging equipment, as well as tires, among other items.
How to decide if Cub Cadet zero-turn mower is the best option for your needs?
Deciding on whether a Cub Cadet zero-turn mower is the right option for your needs involves considering a few different factors. It’s important to look at your budget, land size, and the type of terrain you will be mowing.
If you want to maximize your efficiency in mowing large areas, then these mowers can be especially helpful as they can offer great speed and agility over traditional models.
Additionally, it’s important to think about the type of engine power you desire, as there are several options available that can fit any need.
Considering all of these elements can help narrow down whether or not a Cub Cadet zero-turn mower is the best choice for your needs.
What are the most popular models of Cub Cadet zero-turn mower at the moment?
Currently, the two most popular models of Cub Cadet zero-turn mowers are the XT1LT50 and the XT2LX46EFI.
The XT1LT50 is powered by a 22 HP Kohler engine and features a 50 inch triple blade mowing deck designed for tight fits around landscaping features. In addition, it also has an ergonomic steering wheel for comfortable maneuvering.
On the other hand, the XT2LX46EFI is equipped with a 24 HP Kawasaki engine allowing it to cut through overgrown turf with ease as well as having an improved fuel efficiency than its counterparts.
Cub Cadet Cub Cadet 28 in. 195 cc 3-in-1 Rear Wheel Drive Gas Push Button Electric Start Walk Behind Self Propelled Lawn Mower
Cub Cadet’s machine isn’t commercial duty, but it packs plenty of mower for homeowner purposes. The 195-CC engine provides more than enough oomph for normal cutting conditions. The mower can be equipped with dedicated mulching blades or blades for bagging. Both provide a good cut quality. The bagging blades provide the necessary air flow to move grass clippings into the 2.25-bushel rear bag. We found the mower to be extremely effective at picking up leaves and clippings. (Note: the mower will fill the bag and pack it tight—and then fill the blower tube. It takes some experience to find the sweet spot when you need to empty the bag before the tube is plugged.)
The mower’s many clever attributes include a push-button start that was reliable in our tests, even in cold weather. The Cub Cadet”s battery is self charging, like your car”s, which means you don’t need to plug the battery into a wall charger. Control the ground speed by pushing forward on the pivoting drive bar (it’s similar to the mechanism pioneered by Toro on its Personal Pace mowers). With the bar full forward, you’re moving at a brisk walk.
Controlling deck height is reasonably easy. Cub Cadet figured out the geometry of the single rear deck lever so that it’s easy to raise and lower the deck (from 1.25 inches to 3.75 inches); that’s particularly important since the mower weighs nearly 100 pounds. Both front caster wheels need to be independently height adjusted, and that takes a bit of experience to do quickly, but once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty easy. It’s also very easy to engage the spring-loaded locks for the caster wheels, which is helpful when you need to cut long, straight rows.
The mower is a blade-brake-clutch type, which is particularly useful in fall and spring yard cleanup. Stop the mower and release the drive and operator control bars. The drive system and blades stop, but the engine remains running. You can move a fallen branch out of the way or reposition some yard furniture and resume mowing without having to restart the engine. And to reduce the mower’s storage foot print, it has a spring-loaded bar that you can unlock to tip the handle to the 90-degree position.
The mower’s price tag of approximately 900 is about twice that of the average residential walk mower, yes. On the other hand, the Cub is a lot of machine that should speed your mowing to faster completion.
Roy Berendsohn has worked for more than 25 years at Popular Mechanics, where he has written on carpentry, masonry, painting, plumbing, electrical, woodworking, blacksmithing, welding, lawn care, chainsaw use, and outdoor power equipment. When he’s not working on his own house, he volunteers with Sovereign Grace Church doing home repair for families in rural, suburban and urban locations throughout central and southern New Jersey.