Pros and Cons of Cub Cadet zero-turn Riding Mower
When it comes to taking care of your lawn, having the right tools for the job is essential. Sure, you could use a standard push mower or even an electric one, but for efficiency and convenience nothing beats using a zero-turn riding mower.
Cub Cadet zero-turn riding mowers are some of the most popular in today’s market due to their quality design and a perfect balance between speed and power.
But as with any tool, there are also pros and cons that need to be considered before making such a large purchase.
In this post, we will explore both sides of the equation so you can decide whether investing in a Cub Cadet zero-turn riding mower is right for you.
What makes Cub Cadet zero-turn mowers stand out from other brands available on the market?
Cub Cadet zero-turn mowers stand out among other brands on the market due to their commitment to excellent craftsmanship, ease of use, and various features. The mowers provide superior power, convenience, and quality construction that can meet the needs of both beginner and experienced gardeners alike.
In addition, Cub Cadet zero-turn mowers are built with a patented steering wheel control technology that makes steering effortless, even when cutting on slopes or corners. As well as ensuring maximum efficiency when mowing large areas, Cub Cadet also offers an extended warranty for extra assurance.
With such an extensive range of features, it is no wonder why Cub Cadet zero-turn mowers are highly sought after by experienced gardeners in search of high-quality performance.
What are the pros of using a Cub Cadet zero-turn mower?
Firstly, they provide superior cutting performance and time savings when compared to traditional mowers. This is due to the precise maneuverability provided by the dual hydrostatic rear-drive system, which allows you to make tight turns at high speeds without affecting the cut quality.
Secondly, zero-turn mowers like Cub Cadet’s improve safety compared to standard ride-on mowers since their low center of gravity keeps them from tipping, and their rollover protection systems guard against falls.
Additionally, these types of mowers typically have faster average mowing speed due to their ability to make sharp turns quickly and easily, saving time spent on larger lawns or jobs that require many turns around obstacles such as trees or bushes.
Additionally, with a narrower width than most traditional riding tractors (averaging between 38 and 54 inches), zero-turns are better suited for navigating tight spaces where traditional products may struggle or becoming blocked altogether.
Finally, many modern models come complete with useful features such as whisper-quiet operation and headlights for late-night fall cleanups or dusk operations on long summer evenings.
What are the cons of using a Cub Cadet zero-turn mower?
The most notable of these is the cost, which can be relatively high compared to some other types of mowers. Zero-turn mowers also require significantly more maintenance than traditional lawn tractors. Additionally, they may require additional space for storage due to their size and weight.
Another downside of this type of mower is that it can be difficult to maneuver on sloped surfaces or uneven terrain since the front wheels move independently from the rear wheels. This means that care must be taken when navigating hilly and rough areas in order to avoid tipping over or damaging the machine itself.
Finally, depending on your particular model, zero-turn mowers may not offer as large cutting decks as standard riding lawn tractors (the largest stand-alone Cub Cadet zero-turn model is limited to 60”).
Cub Cadet Zero Turn Steering Wheel Problems
There are many Cub Cadet zero turn steering wheel problems that can occur. The most common problem is the wheels not turning properly. This can be caused by several different things, such as the wrong size tires being used, or the wheels being out of alignment.
Another common problem is the engine stalling when trying to turn the wheel. This can be caused by a number of different things, such as a loose belt, or dirty spark plugs.
If you have a Cub Cadet zero turn mower, you may have experienced steering problems. The good news is that there are some simple things you can do to fix the problem. One of the most common causes of steering problems on a Cub Cadet zero turn mower is a loose steering wheel.
If your steering wheel is loose, it will cause the mower to wander from side to side. To fix this problem, simply tighten the steering wheel with a wrench. Another common cause of steering problems on a Cub Cadet zero turn mower is a damaged or worn out steering cable.
If your steering cable is damaged, it will need to be replaced. You can purchase a new steering cable at your local Cub Cadet dealer or online. If you are still having steering problems after checking these two items, you may need to take your mower to a professional for further diagnosis and repair.
cub cadet rzt 50 steering problems – cub cadet steering repair
If you’re the proud owner of a Cub Cadet zero-turn mower, you know that these machines are built to last. But even the best mowers can have problems from time to time. One common issue that owners may face is hydrostatic transmission problems.
Hydrostatic transmissions work by using hydraulic fluid to power the wheels. If there’s a problem with the fluid level or pressure, it can cause the mower to move erratically or not at all. If you’re having trouble with your Cub Cadet zero-turn mower, check the following:
– Level of hydraulic fluid: The first thing you should do is check the level of hydraulic fluid. If it’s low, add more until it reaches the full line on the dipstick. – Pressure relief valve: If the hydrostatic transmission is overpressurized, it can cause problems.
Check the pressure relief valve and make sure it’s functioning properly. – Drive control linkages: Make sure that all of the drive control linkages are connected and working properly. If one is loose or damaged, it could be causing difficulties.
If you’re still having trouble after checking these things, it’s best to contact a professional for help. They’ll be able to diagnose and solve any hydrostatic transmission problems you may be having.
If you own a Cub Cadet zero turn mower, you may have experienced steering wheel problems. The good news is that there are some things you can do to fix the problem. First, check the bolts that hold the steering wheel in place.
If they are loose, tighten them up. Next, check the steering cable for wear and tear. If it looks damaged, replace it.
If neither of those fixes work, then you may need to replace the entire steering assembly. This is a more involved repair and should be done by a qualified technician.
How do Zero-Turn Mowers work?
Fast, efficient and easy to use, we believe you can’t beat a zero-turn mower. Here’s a quick rundown of how they work and what makes them so great.
There’s debate over who really invented the zero-turn mower. In 1949 a man called Max Swisher created a zero-turn mower that had one wheel at the front and two at the back, making it capable of doing 360 degree turns virtually on the spot.
Then, in 1963, another man called John Regier adapted the steering system and transmission designs used in some agricultural equipment he helped develop and this led to the creation of the first zero-turn mower.
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This term refers to the turning radius being zero inches or a zero-degree-turn radius. It can do this thanks to its specialised way of steering. Put simply, the mower can turn within it’s own length, or as some say ‘turn on a dime’.
Some zero-turn mowers have steering wheels, although this style has largely been rejected by most manufacturers after a resurgence saw one brand bring out a steering wheel model in 2016. Most use a method called differential steering. changing the speed of the wheels to steer. To that end, most zero-turn mowers are operated using two levers that control the back wheels individually. Each back wheel has its own joint transmission and wheel motor, known as a transaxle.
- To go straight ahead push both levers forward
- To reverse or slow down pull both levers backwards
- To curve right push the left handle forward
- To curve left push the right handle forward
- To pivot in place move one lever forward and the other back with equal force
- To swing around push the appropriate handle forward while keeping the other in neutral
It is this ability to turn on the spot and manoeuvre in and around objects up close with ease that makes mowing time so much faster with a zero-turn. You’re simply able to cover more grass in less time. Be aware that it takes practice to operate a zero turn with ease and avoiding scuffing – but don’t be put off – anyone can drive one with as little as 30 mins seat time, regardless of machinery experience!
What kind of terrain are they good for?
You’ll get peak performance from a zero-turn mower on large, open, flat areas. You can use zero-turn mowers on small slopes but we’d recommend talking to an expert first beforehand to make sure you get the right mower to handle it.
If you’re wondering if a zero-turn mower is right for you, download our FREE guide to help you decide.
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How Does a Zero Turn Mower Work?
The drive wheels of a zero turn mower are controlled by two independent wheel motors. The ability for one wheel of the mower to turn forward while the other wheel moves in reverse is what allows the mower to turn in a zero-degree radius. Operators can make the wheels move in the same or different directions.
Most zero turn lawn mowers don’t come with a steering wheel. Instead they typically have two levers that control the two motors connected to each rear wheel. This makes it easy to drive a zero turn lawn mower.
How Do Zero Turn Mowers Handle on Slopes?
One of the benefits of a zero turn mower is that it can be fitted with many attachments. A zero turn can accommodate grass baggers, mulch kits, trailer hitch kits, headlight kits and more.
Additionally, some zero turn lawn mower brands give users the options to install suspension seats for added comfort, rollover protection structures (ROPS) kits for added protection and striper kits that give lawns that beautiful finished look.
The Best Zero-Turn Mowers of 2023
These achieve the rare feat of making lawn mowing fun.
By Roy Berendsohn Published: Mar 1, 2023
When it comes to yard work, zero turn mowers do the impossible. They make lawn mowing fun. They accomplish this by putting unprecedented speed, control and maneuverability at the disposal of the person mowing the lawn. The so-called “zero turn” feature of these mowers converts a grass cutting machine into something akin to an amusement park ride. You steer the machine with two levers—the left lever controls the left wheel, the right lever the right wheel. With that steering setup, you can zoom over the landscape cutting straight lines, curves, or pivot the mower into and out of a corner. What’s not to like?
Read on to understand how these agile grass cutters work, how we go about testing them, and see some candidates that we’ve recently tested as well as some that we haven’t but that we think look particularly promising.
The Best Zero-Turn Lawn Mowers
A zero-turn riding mower consists of an operator platform, a frame and wheels, an engine (or battery bank), transmissions (or motors), and a pair of control levers commonly known as lap bars. In gas mowers, the engine powers a pulley system. One group of pulleys drives the blades, another group powers a pair of transmissions–one at each rear wheel. When you move the lap bar forward or back, you are directing the transmission to go faster, slower, or even turn the opposite way. When one drive wheel turns clockwise and the other counter clockwise, the mower pivots. When the wheels rotate at different rates, the mower turns in an arc-shaped path. When the lap bars are in the neutral position, the mower stops. Aside from a parking brake, there’s no other braking mechanism. Battery-powered zero-turn mowers work the same way, but have separate motors to drive the rear wheels and one for each blade inside the mower deck.
When it comes to transmission, most mowers have a Hydrogear EZT—a well-known and cost-effective residential-grade transaxle with a reputation for durability.
Some mowers use a deck stamped from one piece of steel, others use a deck fabricated from multiple pieces and welded together. A fabricated deck can be built from thicker steel at a lower cost than it would be able to be built otherwise. Once you’re talking about stamping metal as thick as 10 gauge (about 1⁄8 inch thick), the cost of stamping such a deck would push up the mower’s price beyond what most people are willing to pay. The decks in the mowers below range from 42 to 52 inches, a typical size in this class of product. When powered by these engines and the Hydrogear, these mowers will deliver a decent cut quality at their rated top speed of 7 mph. Note, however, that cut quality declines steeply if you maintain that speed in very thick grass or on uneven terrain.
As to the electric mowers, they represent the leading edge of the technology in this category. These are remarkable and expensive mowers powered by large-voltage lithium-ion batteries. If you’re interested in reducing mowing noise and simplifying your maintenance routine by eliminating gas and oil, they’re worth a look.
Selecting a Zero-Turn Mower
Everyone would like to select the biggest possible zero-turn mower with the hope of whittling a big grass cutting job down to size as quickly as possible. Reality usually intercedes because these machines are expensive and the wide range of options available today quickly drive up the cost. Roughly speaking, you start somewhere in the range of a mower with a 42-inch deck costing in the vicinity of 3200 to 3500 and move up in increments of 1000 to 1500 until you reach entry-level commercial-grade equipment that costs 7000 to 8000.
Again, speaking in terms of approximation, a mower with a 42-inch deck will cut a two-acre lot (that takes into account that the house, driveway, outbuildings and various landscape features are taking up some of that space). Use a mower with a larger deck to cut anything over two acres. But here’s the caveat. That entry-level ZTR mower (3200, say) with a 42-inch deck will wear out faster and need more maintenance than a mower with a 50-inch deck, a heavier frame, larger engine and higher quality transmissions, and thicker deck with more robust blade spindles, costing 4500.
In the simplest possible terms, you can cut a smaller area with a larger mower and expect more longevity out of the machine (not to mention a nicer mowing experience) or you can cut a larger area with a smaller machine and encounter more maintenance and a mowing experience that will be, we might say, a bit more rugged.
But there are still other factors to consider, in selecting a mower other than deck size and your budget. Larger mowers take more space in a garage or outbuilding. And a mower with a 50-inch or even 60-inch deck, as useful as it might be in getting the job done more quickly, may not fit through a fence’s gate, and it might be more difficult to maneuver in tight spots without creating scalp marks on the lawn from a lot of close-quarter pivoting.
Carefully consider all these factors when shopping for a mower: your budget, maintenance and whether you will perform that work yourself, mowing speed and time, maneuverability and trimming in tight areas, the importance that you place on your comfort while mowing, cut quality, longevity, storage, and access to the landscape.
How We Select and Test
There’s only one way to test a mower, and that’s to cut grass with it. But we also do more than mow.
We raise and lower the deck and adjust the seat. We look at service point access (the air filter, the spark plug, and the oil filter) and how easy it is to remove the deck. We mow approximately an acre with each mower, considering cut and mulching quality while running uphill, downhill, across washboard, and along sidehills. (On sidehills, we’ll mow surfaces pitched up to approximately 20 degrees; manufacturers generally recommend not going steeper than 10 degrees, but we like to be thorough.) We evaluate power and speed relative to cut quality—we investigate whether the mower delivers a decent cut mowing at full speed. When mowing in damp conditions, we look at whether the mower’s tires accumulate grass and how effectively it discharges moist clippings. Finally, we test maneuverability (these machines are, generally, very nimble) and how readily they come to a stop when you back off the lap bar control levers.
For more lawn mower reviews, check out our guides to the best riding lawn mowers, electric lawn mowers, and self-propelled mowers we recommend, and learn more about finding the right mower for you.
What Are the Differences Between a Traditional Riding Mower and a Zero-Turn Riding Mower?
There are two main differences: turn radius and steering controls.
This is the defining characteristic of zero-turn mowers. A traditional riding mower turns the same way as a rear-wheel drive car. The rear wheels propel it forward while the front wheels control the direction it moves, resulting in a curved arc.
But a ZTR mower can rotate its drive wheels in opposite directions simultaneously. That gives it the ability to turn without moving forward.
Most zero-turn riding mowers feature lap bars rather than a steering wheel. Each bar controls a single rear tire. Push both bars forward and you’ll go forward. Pull them both back and you’ll go in reverse. Push one forward while pulling the other back, and you’ll rotate in place.
It’s worth noting not all zero-turn mowers use lap bars. Some zero-turn riding mowers come with a standard steering wheel but still offer pinpoint turning.
Traditional Riding Mower Advantages
Traditional riding mowers have two clear advantages over their zero-turn counterparts.
A traditional riding mower typically costs 30% to 50% less than a comparable zero-turn mower. In our examples, the John Deere S100 costs about 38% less than the Z330M, a savings of 450,500.
Easier to repair
Because they’ve been around for many years, it’s usually easier to obtain replacement parts for traditional riding mowers. If you’re a DIYer, chances are the steering and drivetrain of a traditional riding mower will be familiar enough to perform basic maintenance on your own.
Zero-Turn Riding Mower Advantages
Traditional riding mowers have an advantage in price and simplicity. Zero-turn mowers excel at saving you time.
It takes a great deal of maneuvering for a traditional riding mower to navigate standalone obstacles like bushes, trees and swing sets. A zero-turn riding mower can maneuver around these without the repeated backing up and redirecting of a traditional riding mower.
Precision controls reduce mowing time, but a zero-turn radius mower is faster than traditional mowers in pretty much every other category.
Zero-turn mowers tend to have wider cutting decks — typically 48- to 54-inches, compared to 42- to 46-inches with most traditional riding mowers — along with a faster operating speed. The maximum mowing speed for the Z330M is seven miles per hour, while the S100 tops out at 5.5 mph.
Zero Turn vs. Traditional Riding Mower Buying Considerations
If you’re deciding between a traditional or zero-turn riding mower, consider these key points.
If your budget is less than 3,000, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a zero-turn mower in your price range. A traditional riding mower can cost more than 3,000, but you’re likely to find a good fit between 450,200 and 6500,800.
If you have a particularly large yard, the speed and deck size of a ZTR mower will make a huge difference in the time you spend mowing and refueling. The S100 is recommended for yards of about an acre, while the Z330M can handle three to four acres.
Yards with narrow pathways between obstructions often benefit from zero-turn mowers. But be sure to compare the width of the narrowest sections with the width of a mower’s cutting deck. The most agile mower in the world is useless if it’s too wide to fit through your gate.
The wider ZTR mower deck requires a fair amount of space in storage. A traditional riding mower is better in a tight garage, while a zero-turn mower needs a bigger outbuilding or small shed.
Ohio-based freelance writer and author Dan Stout is a former residential remodeler, commercial site supervisor and maintenance manager. He’s worked on nearly all aspects of building and DIY including project planning and permitting, plumbing, basic electric, drywall, carpentry, tiling, painting and more. He also publishes noir fantasy thrillers, including The Carter Series, from Penguin imprint DAW Books.