Lawn mower line maker. How To Cut Grass Like A Pro Using Lawn Mowing Patterns & Techniques

How To Cut Grass Like A Pro Using Lawn Mowing Patterns Techniques

Using lawn mowing patterns to cut your grass is beneficial, and makes the chore of cutting it more fun. In this post, I’ll tell you all about how to use different grass cutting techniques to create those nice straight lines in your yard, just like the pros.

Learning the basic lawn mowing patterns will make your yard look amazing, and it’s also better for the grass too.

You don’t need to spend tons of extra time learning how to cut grass like a pro, it’s all about being intentional with the way you mow.

When you are more intentional, it becomes much easier (and more fun!) to maintain a healthy lawn.

In this detailed guide, you’ll learn all about the different grass cutting techniques and patterns, and how to easily use them to make nice designs in your lawn.

Why Use Lawn Mowing Patterns?

You don’t need to be completely obsessed with having the perfect lawn to use mowing patterns. Some people totally geek out about it, and that’s cool.

I’m not one of those people, but I do like to maintain the grass and keep it looking nice (after all, it is often the backdrop for my gardens in photos).

Being intentional about how I mow, and using simple grass cutting patterns, makes it much easier to maintain a healthy lawn.

Even if you could care less about creating perfect stripes or patterns in your grass, it’s still important to pay attention to the way you mow.

Not only will your yard look nicer, your grass will be healthier, have less weeds, and be easier to maintain.

Mowing a criss cross pattern into my lawn

Benefits Of Grass Cutting Patterns

Here’s the deal, if you always use the exact same pattern every time you mow, the tire tracks will start to wear out areas of the grass. This can cause ugly dead spots, which invite weeds to grow.

Using the exact same cutting pattern over and over will also compact the grass over time, making it harder for healthy new blades to grow.

Switching up your routine on a regular basis minimizes the wear and tear damage caused by the mower tires.

Alternating mowing techniques also keeps the grass from becoming compacted, allowing plenty of airflow, and keeping it looking its best.

Plus, you need to mow it a little taller in order to get the right effect, which is better for the grass too (but more on that later).

And, as an added bonus, mowing patterns into the grass also helps to hide the weeds, giving the illusion of the perfect lawn.

Lawn mower tire tracks damage to the grass

Professional Lawn Cutting Techniques

If you want to mow your lawn like a professional (or just maintain a healthier yard), then learning the basic patterns is key.

There are a few simple techniques you can play around with to see which ones you like.

The easiest one to start with is creating stripes in your lawn. Once you get the hang of that, it will be simple to create other designs.

Other common designs are the checkerboard pattern, straight diagonal lines, a criss-cross diagonal pattern, and diamonds.

It might sound like things just got complicated, but all of these fancy designs are just variations of the simple striping pattern.

What Pattern Should I Use To Mow My Lawn?

There is no perfect pattern to use on every lawn. I personally like to mix it up, and use a different one every time.

But I have a large yard that is pretty square, so I have plenty of room to experiment. If yours is oddly shaped or small, you might find that only one or two of the designs will work.

Once you figure out the ones that look the best in your yard, and are the easiest to create, mowing actually becomes kind of fun.

Basic checkerboard lawn pattern

How To Cut Grass Like A Pro

Making lawn striping patterns won’t add any work, it just takes a little extra thought and a bit of planning at first, so you can visualize what you want to do.

You don’t have to mow over and over again, spending extra hours to create the stripes and patterns. It’s all about how the grass lays after you cut it.

As your mower goes over them, the blades of grass will bend in that direction. Then when you go the other way, the grass bends in that direction.

The light reflects off of the blades differently in each direction – and that’s what makes the lines.

Mowing the grass taller (raising the lawn mower height) will make the stripes show up better, because longer blades bend more than short ones.

How To Mow Patterns In Your Lawn Step-By-Step

You don’t need any special equipment to create the professional look in your own yard, any push or riding mower will work. Here’s how to create those pretty lawn stripes…

Step 1: Cut the outside edges – Mow around the outside edges of your yard first (just like when a Zamboni starts cleaning the ice).

This is where you’ll turn your mower as you’re cutting the rest of the grass. Having a few feet of turning space makes it much easier to create straight lines.

Cutting around the lawn edges like a zamboni

Step 2: Line up the first stripe – Make your first stripe using a landmark to keep it straight. I use the edges of my garden beds to help me get a nice straight pattern that matches the lines already in my yard.

You could also use a sidewalk, driveway, patio, or some other straight-edged hardscape in your yard as a guide.

Lining up my mower with a straight edge

Step 3: Use the first stripe as your guide – After you make your first stripe, turn your mower around on the outside edge of the lawn where you’ve already mowed.

Line your mower up so that the wheels are on the edge of the line you just created. Then follow that line to create your next stripe.

Mowing patterns into my lawn

Step 4: Repeat the same pattern – Continue going back and forth over your lawn, lining your mower up after each turn with the last stripe you created.

Each new stripe you make will be in the opposite direction of the last, creating those nice clean lines. If you end up with a crooked line, just mow back over it in the same direction to fix it.

Step 5: Go over the outside edges again (optional) – Once you’re done creating your lawn stripes, go back around the perimeter of the yard again.

This will get rid of any turn marks left over from your striping, and any unsightly clumps of grass that were dropped by the mower.

Taking this extra step gives the lawn a more finished look, but it is totally optional. If you’re already happy with the way it looks, then you can skip this step.

Once you get some practice making nice straight lines, play around with other patterns and designs to see which ones you like the best in your lawn.

How Grass Type Affects Lawn Mowing Patterns

It’s important to note that the type of grass you have can make a big difference in how dark your stripes will be.

We have Kentucky Bluegrass, which is a variety that does better in cooler climates (like we have here in MN). It has a longer blade, and is thicker and lusher than those you’d find in warmer climates.

If you live in a hot climate, have a shorter variety, or one that has a more stem than blades, it won’t bend as nicely as the longer grass types.

In that case, the patterns won’t be as prominent, or your mower may not leave any lines at all.

A simple lawn striping pattern

Lawn Mowing Patterns Tips Tricks

Creating stripes and designs in your lawn is easy, and it won’t take you any extra time to mow once you get the hang of it. Here are a few tips and tricks to remember when you’re just getting started…

  • Try to use a different pattern or change the direction of your stripes after every 2-3 mows. This will keep the grass growing its best, and avoid wear and tear damage caused by the mower tires.
  • The trick to creating darker lawn stripes is to mow the grass taller, because the blades don’t bend as well when they’re cut short.
  • Use a sidewalk, driveway, or other hardscape in your yard as a guide to keep your lines straight.
  • Experiment with different cutting patterns to see which one you like, and what looks best in your grass.

Beautiful straight lines mowed in the grass

General Tips For Mowing The Lawn

  • To help with weed control, don’t cut the grass too short. Weeds have a harder time establishing themselves in a thick, healthy lawn.
  • Cut the grass lower in the fall, and make sure it’s short before snow covers it. This will help to avoid dead spots caused by winter damage, and also prevents mold growth in early spring.
  • Remove all the leaves and other debris from your lawn before winter to avoid dead spots in the grass come spring.
  • Keep your lawn mower in tip-top shape, and always be sure the blade is sharp for a clean cut.
  • To avoid ugly clumps of grass messing up your lines, raise the mower height. Then gradually lower it when it’s time to cut your grass shorter. Mowing more frequently, and only when the grass is dry, will also prevent unsightly boogers.

When you learn how to use lawn mowing techniques and patterns, your grass will be much healthier and easier to maintain. Plus, it will look amazing too.

Yard Care Tips

Share you favorite lawn mowing patterns or tips in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев section below.

About Amy Andrychowicz

I’m an author and expert gardener who loves growing ALL of the plants. From vegetables, herbs, and flowers to cacti, succulents, tropicals, and houseplants. you name it, I’ve grown it! My green thumb comes from my parents, and I’ve been gardening for most of my life. Read

Комментарии и мнения владельцев

I started mowing a different pattern when I saw the tire marks before I mowed. Now I start the season mowing north and south, and rotate 45 degrees clockwise with each successive mowing. A little OCD, I know, but I think it looks better. I mow about 3/4 acre, so th pattern shows up.

Awesome! I feel OCD about using mowing patterns too, LOL! But it looks so much nicer, and it’s better for the grass too. Great work!

All great tips. didn’t know to lower deck before winter. Also, sharp mulching blades make a nice Clean cut. Cleaning up edges after mowing inhances the Effort you’ve put into job. it doesn’t take a lot of time to go that extra mile to show off your pride of work ! Thanks for all the great tips ! Brendan ?

Thank you for all te wonderful tips on how to mower like a pro. I will make sure my hubby read this post so he can start mowing like pros.

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Our History

American Lawn Mower Company was established in 1895. Our history goes back over 125 years. From the Victorian era to World War II to the second suburban boom of the 1970s, we’ve been around for nearly every industrial revolution in America. From day one, we built the business around providing a cleaner and greener option for maintaining America’s lawns.


In 1902 American Lawn Mower Company moved to a new home, and started manufacturing lawn mowers in Muncie, Indiana. Here, the business continued to manufacture a complete line of reel lawn mowers.



American Lawn and Great States Unite

In 1936, American Lawn Mower Company acquired the Great States Corporation in Shelbyville, which also produced reel lawn mowers. The merging of these two companies continues to stand strong, and is one of the big reasons why American Lawn mower still exists today.



Post War Boom Creates Reel Mower Bust

The reel mower business sustained nearly 60 manufacturers and boomed until the post war era. With increased industrialization, came power rotary mowers. For a short time prior to 1950. American /Great States produced power reel mowers to ride out the post war decline in the market and after that time continued to manufacture reel mowers. By 1953, power mower sales surpassed reel mower sales, and most reel mower manufacturers went out of business. American/Great States was able to survive largely because the family who owned the business also owned an iron foundry where they could get cast iron mower components inexpensively.



A New Market Begins to Emerge

Business continued to shrink, so the company introduced two limited lines of garden cultivators to expand their market. Production dwindled on these until they were discontinued in the early 1990’s. The company endured. A resurgence was waiting in the wings. Increased land costs, expansion of leisure opportunities and a desire to spend less time cutting grass led many Americans to build homes on small lots or to buy low-maintenance condominiums. Soon a new market became available.

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American Lawn Mower Today

Throughout the years, American Lawn Mower Company has products, and expanded brands across several markets.

Today, the American Lawn Mower Company offers a comprehensive line of manual reel lawn mowers, corded, electric, and battery-operated outdoor power equipment. Our tools are offered under multiple brand names including American Lawn Mower, Great States, Radius Garden Tools, Root Assassin, and Earthwise. Our brands are carried in fine garden centers, nurseries, hardware stores, independent retailers, and catalogs throughout the world. We hold dozens of design and utility patents and have received many awards. In 2017, Radius Garden’s Root Slayer Shovel was awarded the Green Thumb Award for the Most Innovative Garden Tool. In early 2020 American Lawn Mower launched the Pronk! Pets brand. Pronk! Pets was created to instill excitement, joy, and happiness for your pet friends.

Since 1895, American Lawn Mower Company has strived to deliver the best performance and service in the industry. As tools continue to develop, we adapt to modernize our equipment while keeping America green.

STIHL Zero-Turn Lawn Mower: 19 Models for 2023

STIHL joins forces with Briggs Stratton for a line of zero-turn lawn mower models to add to their outdoor power equipment arsenal. The collaboration between these two companies aims to expand product offerings across the country. This mower lineup will even be made in the USA using global materials, bringing more jobs and opportunities to U.S.-based manufacturers.

STIHL makes some of the best chainsaws and other handheld equipment and manufactures a ton of products for lawn care and landscaping. With the introduction of zero-turn mowers to the company’s roster, STIHL will have what we consider to be one of the most robust ranges of outdoor power equipment in America.

Made in the USA

These mowers will be manufactured in the USA to keep them consistent with STIHL’s production and quality standards. STIHL is understandably enthusiastic about working with Briggs Stratton and its long history in the lawncare/landscape industry.

“The introduction of zero-turn mowers allows our network of authorized local STIHL Dealers to offer an even greater breadth of product solutions for our customers who turn to STIHL for world class products and support to meet their garden and landscape needs.

“Working with Briggs Stratton, a well-established leader in this product category, allows us to bring a superior product to market for both demanding professionals and discerning homeowners.”

Terry Horan, STIHL CEO and President

“We take great pride that STIHL has seen in Briggs Stratton what we have known for years… We design, engineer and manufacture the best zero-turn mowers on the market.

“With a 114-year legacy of power application and manufacturing expertise, Briggs Stratton is a trusted leader in this industry… We look forward to applying our superior product and manufacturing capabilities to produce STIHL zero-turn mowers.”

Steve Andrews, Briggs Stratton CEO and President

Bracketing the Market

STIHL zero-turn mowers are launching with 5 separate lines and a total of 19 individual models on the Briggs Stratton system. These include a variety of engine options from Kawasaki, Vanguard, and Briggs Stratton, as well as a suite of accessories.

STIHL is also including models for every ZT mowing application— from Pro-grade reliability to farming and ranching models, and even down to homeowner-targeted machines.

STIHL Zero Turn Lawn Mower: 700 and 900 Series

Beginning with the more high-end, professional-grade lineup, the STIHL 700-series and 900-series ZTs cover the meat of the lineup with a total of 12 models.

Deck widths range from 52 to 72 inches. While lines from other brands often include 48-inch options for their ZTs, it looks like STIHL is leaving that one out for now. Perhaps we’ll see a stand-on range in the future that covers the smaller deck widths.

There are a variety of high-performance engine options, including Vanguard or Kawasaki EFI engines, or a Kawasaki carbureted engine.

Both series mowers have four-wheel suspension with mowing deck height compensation. Additionally, they feature independent front suspension with upper and lower control arms reminiscent of the ISX mower series from Ferris (a Briggs Stratton brand). This system uses four steel control rods and a coil-over shock suspension. In our experience, you get a smooth ride from mowers that use this system.

The Hydro-Gear ZT transaxles give you a top speed of 12 mph in the 900-series and 10 mph in the 700-series. Both go up to 5 mph in reverse.

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With the 700-series, you get a deluxe seat with armrests. The 900-series takes it a step up, giving you a premium suspension seat with armrests and an adjustable backrest.

Additional Features and Specifications

  • Heavy-duty 8-inch and 10-inch cast iron, greaseable mower deck spindles
  • Efficient, cool-running two-belt mower drive system enables a longer lifespan and less maintenance
  • Two USB-A ports with 3.15 amps of power
  • Accessory-compatible trailer hitch
  • Foot-operated cutting height adjustment
  • Cup holders
  • Flexible side rubber discharge chute
  • Flip-up floor pan provides serviceability and cleaning of the mowing deck.
  • Large fuel capacity
  • Fuel gauge is visible from the operator’s seat
  • Dual-function hour meter tracks both run time and mowing hours

STIHL 700 and 900 Series Zero-Turn Lawn Mower Price

  • STIHL RZ 752i: 13,149.99
  • STIHL RZ 752 K: 11,899.99
  • STIHL 752i K: 11,849.99
  • STIHL RZ 760i: 13,849.99
  • STIHL RZ 760 K: 12,499.99
  • STIHL RZ 760i K: 12,449.99
  • STIHL RZ 960i: 17,899.99
  • STIHL RZ 960 K: 17,899.99
  • STIHL RZ 960i K: 18,199.99
  • STIHL RZ 972i: 18,399.99
  • STIHL RZ 972 K: 18,399.99
  • STIHL RZ 972i K: 18,699.99

STIHL Zero Turn Lawn Mower: 500 Series

The STIHL 500-series zero-turn mowers include four models that come in either a 52-inch or 60-inch mowing deck. They’re ideal for farm and ranch operators, as well as lawncare professionals. You get top speeds of 10 mph (or 5 mph in reverse) thanks to the commercial-grade Hydro-Gear ZT-3400 transaxles. These mowers also have a four-wheel suspension system like the 700- and 900-series models.

There are four models in this line— the RZ 552, RZ 552 K, RZ 560, and RZ 560 K.

Additional Features and Specifications

  • Large fuel capacity and easily-visible fuel gauge
  • Foldable Roll Over Protection System (ROPS) with rattle-preventing polyurethane blocks to prevent rattling
  • Aluminum 5.25-inch mower deck spindles for easier maintenance and extended life
  • Efficient, cool-running two-belt mower drive system enables a longer lifespan and less maintenance
  • Two USB-A portswith 3.15 amps of power
  • Foot-operated cutting height adjustment
  • Deluxe seat designed to provide a comfortable ride throughout the job
  • Cup holders
  • Flexible side rubber discharge chute
  • Flip-up floor pan provides serviceability and cleaning of the mowing deck.
  • Dual-function hour meter tracks both run time and mowing time

STIHL 500 Series Zero-Turn Lawn Mower Price

  • STIHL RZ 552: 9,949.99
  • STIHL RZ 552 K: 10,449.99
  • STIHL RZ 560: 10,499.99
  • STIHL RZ 560 K: 10,999.99

STIHL Zero Turn Lawn Mower: 100 and 200 Series

The STIHL RZ 142, RZ 152, and RZ 261 make up the 100-series and 200-series ZTs for the homeowner market. While they’re not as powerful as the ones earlier on this list, they still provide homeowners with the reliability and performance that STIHL is known for. Both series come standard with reliable 23-25 HP V-Twin Briggs Stratton engines along with Hydro-Gear transaxles to deliver top speeds of 8.5 mph (4 mph in reverse).

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Additionally, the RZ 152 and RZ 261 models include four-wheel suspension with adjustable rear shock absorbers. The STIHL RZ 261 model even includes a commercial-grade 61-inch mowing deck, making it ideal for larger residential areas or farming applications.

Additional Features and Specifications

  • 3-gallon fuel capacity
  • Foot-operated cutting height adjustment
  • 12-gauge welded frame
  • Hour meter tracks and displays runtime
  • Flexible side rubber discharge chute
  • Greaseable mower deck spindles
  • Spin-on transaxle oil filter captures debris and simplifies maintenance
  • Two USB-A ports
  • Cup holders

STIHL Zero-Turn Lawn Mower Financing and Warranty

There will be several financing plans to make it easier for professional landscapers to include these ZTs in their fleets. Qualified customers can get 0% financing, as well as low APR programs. STIHL sweetens the pot by offering professionals financing through a STIHL dealer the option to include STIHL handheld tools in the same purchase for financing.

All STIHL zero-turn mowers are eligible for financing.

STIHL includes a 3-year limited warranty with all of its zero-turn mowers. Consumer models carry 3 years or 500 hours, whichever comes first. For professional models, that number goes up to 3 years or 1500 hours. Expect to see them at authorized STIHL dealers starting in January 2023.

The Best Lawn Mowers of 2023

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases made through the links below may earn us and our publishing partners a commission. were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

Honda HRX217VKA

The Honda HRX217VKA is powerful, heavy and ideal for larger lawns. Read

Ego Power LM2135SP

This mower is powerful, comfortable, and a joy to use. It performed extremely well mulching and driving itself uphill. Read

Honda HRN216VKA

Honda has produced superior power equipment for many years and this mower, which operates with rear-wheel drive, is no exception. Read

Kobalt KM 5080-06

The electric Kobalt KM 5080-06 was flexible and easy to operate, and can run bagged or bagless. Read

Hart HLPM061US

The Hart HLPM061US performed well across terrains and has a simple to use speed control. Read


Until just a few short years ago, gas lawn mowers were king. As more consumers are seeking eco-friendly cars, homes, and, yes, power equipment, advanced battery technology answers the call.

Today, consumers can drive an electric car, thrive in a solar-powered home and maintain their property with battery-powered equipment. But are the new electric push lawn mowers as good as the old internal combustion mowers? We decided to find out.

How To Get Perfect Lawn Stripes GUARANTEED! [How To Tutorial]

We tested gasoline, electric-corded, and battery-powered lawn mowers from the leading brands. We were eager to see if the battery-powered mowers could handle a large yard as well as the tried-and-true gasoline models. We weren’t disappointed. The Honda HRX217VKA (available at Amazon) came out on top as Best Overall, edging out its predecessor and our previous winner, the Honda HRN216VKA.

For the non-gasoline mowers, the Ego Power LM2135SP (available at Walmart) is our choice for Best Electric Lawn Mower. This mower set-up was quick, and it handled our testing well. The Ego Power also includes features not found on similar electric models.

The Honda HRX217VKA was a pleasure to use.

  • Power source: Gas
  • Self-propelled: Yes
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Rear discharge or shred leaves
  • Drive: Rear-wheel
  • Weight: 113 lbs

Quiet and powerful, the Honda HRX217VKA 21-inch NeXite lawn mower is the one to have for larger spaces. It is not designed for small yards, and you won’t be darting in and out of flower beds and shrubbery.

It is a pleasure to use. We had tested Honda mowers before and were familiar with their operation and overall product quality. The HRX217VKA did not disappoint. Easy to assemble and set up right out of the box, it started on the first pull of the cord.

Right away you can feel the heft of this mower with its innovative NeXite deck and powerful motor. It’s heavier than most mowers, but it feels planted on the lawn and tracks perfectly. It’s a mower for large lawns, and it makes the most difficult cuts a breeze.

With its 200cc motor and Select Drive Control, this mower easily cuts, bags and mulches the heaviest grass with ease. The Select Drive Control is almost intuitive as it lets you adjust the walking speed with a variety of settings.

The controls on the mower are large and easy to use. You can set the mower to bag or mulch or anywhere in between. Its user-friendly platform is clearly marked. You will use this lawn mower for years and years to come.


The Ego Power LM2135SP is the best electric lawn mower we’ve tested.

  • Power source: Electric/battery
  • Self-propelled: Yes
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Side discharge
  • Drive: Rear-wheel
  • Weight: 88 lbs

Until a few years ago, those who preferred not to buy an internal combustion mower had little choice. But advanced battery technology has finally arrived and the benefits can readily be seen in the Ego Power LM2135SP, a 21-inch self-propelled electric mower. This cordless mower with a cutting width of 21 inches utilizes a 56-volt lithium ion battery to power through up to 60 minutes of lawn cutting.

The Ego Power is powerful, comfortable, and a joy to use. Even though the battery only lasted about an hour, the mower performed extremely well mulching and driving itself uphill. It has plenty of torque and is capable of doing anything a gasoline-powered mower can do. It is clean, easy to use, and efficient.

The set-up on this mower was the easiest of the bunch. The handle slides and folds across the mower with ease, making storage a snap. Adjusting it to a personal height takes seconds.

A quick 50-minute charge on the battery and you’re ready to go. The battery charger even has a cooling fan that improves charging times and keeps the battery cool.

Like some of our other mowers, the Ego Power has twin blades that improve mulching and keep the trips to empty the rear bag to a minimum. Cutting height is achieved with one easy-to-access lever.

Operation is straightforward, and the composite deck makes the mower light and easy to maneuver around yard obstacles. Simply depress the power button, pull the green handle and the blades begin to spin. Dual buttons on the handle make engaging the self-propel feature safe and comfortable.

The Ego Power comes with LED headlights for convenience, and it was the only mower we tested that could propel itself when the blades were not spinning. This was a nice feature that eliminated pushing the mower back to the garage.

Other Lawn Mowers We Tested

Previously our pick for best lawn mower, the Honda HRN216VKA is a 21-inch self-propelled gas mower that’s a great choice for any yard. Honda has produced superior power equipment for many years, and this mower, which operates with rear-wheel drive, is no exception. It can handle the toughest lawns with ease and won’t take up much room in the garage.

The set-up was easy and the mower started on the first pull. Its smooth engine is quieter than the other gasoline mowers, and it has more than enough power to cut and mulch the grass even while going uphill.

The Honda has a stacked and offset blade design that produces smaller clippings, which allows for better mulching and bagging. This means more efficient cutting and fewer stops to empty the grass bag. The bagging and mulching options can be easily and safely selected, once the mower is off, by using one lever on the mowing deck.

The innovative self-propel system is comfortable on the hands, provides adequate speed control, and can even be adjusted for those who are taller or shorter. Folding the handle for storage can be done quickly. This Honda lawn mower even has a gas shut-off valve for off-season storage.


  • Power source: Electric/battery
  • Self-propelled: No
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Side discharge
  • Drive: Rear-wheel
  • Weight: 66 lbs

The Kobalt 80V 21-inch electric mower is a great choice for anyone that wants an affordable, flexible, compact mower that is easy to maneuver and doesn’t require extension cords or gas cans. The mower is strong enough to chop through thick grass, and offers a highly adjustable cutting height.

At 66 pounds it is very easy to operate, with the ability to go bagged or bagless, and you can fold up the push handle for compact storage.

The main draw here is the 80V battery system, which gives you an hour of runtime in our testing, enough to cut about 7,500 square feet on a full charge. It also works in a variety of other Kobalt tools, and spares will run you right around 150. Charging the battery takes around 45 minutes when it’s dead, and it just pops into the battery slot and the mower can turn on with a press of a button if the safety key is inserted—much easier than having to use a traditional pull start.

Overall if you need a nice, basic mower to get the job done and want to go cordless, this is an excellent choice. It cuts clean lines, it’s easy to use, it can handle most lawns with ease, and the light weight makes it much easier to move up and around slopes and hills.

Especially if you’re planning to invest in a range of electric tools, this is a good system to buy into.


  • Power source: Electric/battery
  • Self-propelled: Yes
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Side discharge
  • Drive: All-wheel
  • Weight: 89.5 lbs

This Hart lawnmower was a pleasant surprise.

After removing it from the box and charging the batteries, we fired it up and took it out to the thick, lush grass.

It performed beautifully; its powerful electric motor cut through the lawn with ease and even increased its revolutions when we cut thicker grass. This mower easily handles a larger lawn.

The Hart mower moved with power and confidence through the lawn, and the simple-to-use speed control was right there at your fingertips. While our winning Honda gas mower has a sophisticated Select Drive System, the Hart’s simple slide bar works as well or better.

This excellent lawnmower has the power and convenience of mowers costing much more.


The Toro is a worthy competitor to the top-ranking mowers on this list.

This Toro lawn mower has the largest cutting area at 22 inches, and it is powerful and comfortable to use, thanks to its Personal Pace self-propel system.

To engage the self-propel, simply push the lever forward a bit and the mower begins to move forward, push it a little more and the mower moves faster. After a couple of rows of cutting, you will see how easy it is to regulate speed. This system is not as intuitive as some of the others, but it still works quite well.

Another great feature: The Toro has Briggs and Stratton’s check-don’t-change oil system that never requires an oil change.

Storage is also a snap as the handle folds down and the mower can be stored vertically.


  • Power source: Electric/battery
  • Self-propelled: No
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Rear discharge
  • Drive: Rear-wheel
  • Weight: 58 lbs

At just 58 pounds, this mower makes cutting small lawns a lot of fun. The rear discharge chute allows you trim close to trees, beds, and shrubbery. I found myself zipping around obstacles using only one hand.

This is a simple machine with one battery in the center. Charging time is quick, and once the battery is in you’re on your way.

This is not a lawn mower for the back 40. With a 20-inch cut and a small electric motor, it is just not capable of handling larger lawns. But for most mid to small yards, this mower can clean up the area in no time.

Light and easy to store, this is the perfect mower to keep a lawn looking great.


  • Power source: Electric/battery
  • Self-propelled: Yes
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Side discharge
  • Drive: Rear-wheel
  • Weight: 78 lbs

The 21-inch Ryobi RY401150 40-volt brushless mower set up quickly and easily right out of the box. It includes double blades and cuts clean and clear.

This mower comes with two batteries that can be installed in the top of the machine. One notable drawback is that only one battery powers the mower at a time—cut your grass for approximately 30 minutes and when the first battery is depleted, you stop and move a switch to engage the second battery. Ryobi says that the batteries will last for 70 minutes, but stopping to change batteries seems counterproductive.

Otherwise, the mower performed well and completed all of the tests. It has a one-lever height adjustment and is light enough to maneuver around obstacles. It has plenty of power and handled the hill with little strain.

While both the Ego Power and Ryobi were solid performers on the electric front, the Ryobi was let down by its self-propel controls. The controls are located under the bar, but the lever is vague and unresponsive. Because the lever is designed for thumbs only, you need to push the lever in an awkward manner to get the mower up to speed.


  • Power source: Electric/corded
  • Self-propelled: No
  • Cutting options: Bag, Mulch, Side discharge
  • Drive: Rear-wheel
  • Weight: 65 lbs

For a corded mower, the Greenworks 25022 lawn mower performed quite well. The set-up was easy, and once it was plugged in, it started right up.

Of course, before you use the mower there is the time-consuming task of unearthing your extension cord, unraveling it, and finding a suitable outdoor plug. Once plugged in, the mower embraces its purpose with ease.


It has a powerful 12-amp electric motor that may not conquer larger lawns, but is perfect for smaller yards and trimming duties. Not to mention it offers clean and even mowing.

Not being self-propelled, it takes some effort to push the lawn mower and cord uphill and then navigate a path back so as to not cut your cord.

Its small size makes storage a breeze.


The 14-inch Sun Joe MJ401E lawn mower is the easiest to store. Its diminutive size makes it the perfect lawn mower for small yards and trimming duties. It’s light enough to pick up and move, and it comes with an easy-to-use bagging system.

Still, this is not a lawn mower for cutting the typical suburban lawn, as its lightweight, short wheel base and small wheels make it a little unstable over roots and ruts.

Of all of the lawnmowers tested, the Sun Joe provided the most difficulty when it came time to adjust the height of the blades. The mower utilizes solid axles, front and rear, and the axles are located in a three-notch system under the mower. To change the height of the cut, you need to pull the spring-loaded axles from their positions and move them up or down. It’s a challenging exercise.

The Sun Joe is corded, so cutting area is limited. To its credit, it’s powerful enough when running, but the limited scope means you will have a hard time tackling an entire yard.


The Craftsman M220 is one of the more cumbersome mowers we’ve tested. Set up was more involved—to adjust it to my height I had to first kneel on the floor and remove two fasteners from the bottom of the handle and then pull the handle out of the body. Another two fasteners at the base of the handle allowed me to set the handle angle. The better mowers have release buttons and adjusting levers that allow the operator to make these adjustments quickly and safely while standing.

The mower started on the first pull and seemed to have enough power to tackle any lawn. However, the two levers on top of the handle—one to start and one for speed of self-propulsion—are difficult to operate. Both are difficult to grab if your hands are small to medium, and the levers are too far from the handle for comfortable operation. They’re also not intuitively placed; you have to look each time you make a pass.

The biggest disadvantage of this mower is that it is equipped with front-wheel drive. When self-propelled mowers first came out many years ago, a front-drive system was easy for manufacturers to design and implement and the homeowner didn’t have to push dead weight. The design worked for many years because there was nothing else. But over the years rear-drive systems were developed and it produced a more balanced, more comfortable cutting experience.

When cutting a lawn, the operator naturally has some weight on the handle. Add to this the weight of the grass in the bag off the back of the mower and you have a very light front end. Because the weight of the mower is not over the wheels, the front wheels tend to spin and grasp through each pass. This results in uneven lines, a hard to control mower (especially on a bumpy terrain), premature wearing out of the plastic front wheels, and difficulty trying to trim around obstacles. This antiquated front drive system really lets this mower down.


  • Controls are cumbersome
  • Front Drive System limits control and comfort
  • Not nimble around obstacles

How We Tested Lawn Mowers

The Testers

We spent the summer mowing a half-acre New England lawn, over and over again.

Kevin Kavanaugh is a retired public school teacher and a product tester for Reviewed. Kevin has been cutting lawns for just about 50 years. He has always been intrigued by all things mechanical, be it watches, power equipment, vintage bicycles, or classic cars.

Ray Lane is a retired supermarket store manager, avid golfer, and product tester for Reviewed. His lawn is the envy of Cumberland, Rhode Island, and he has used several push mowers over the years. At 83 years of age, his input on the mowers was critical, specifically when evaluating ease of starting, maneuverability, and safety.

The Tests

We tested lawn mowers on both flat land and hills to test maneuverability and power.

After ordering from retailers like Lowe’s and The Home Depot, we assembled each mower and took note of the ease of the set up and how quickly we could adjust the handle to our preference. We then added gasoline, a battery, or an electrical cord to get the mower ready. We evaluated at the ease of setting the cutting height, first testing a high cutting height and then a lower one.

We took each mower on a few passes of an uncut half-acre lawn, measuring approximately 22,000 square feet, noting how it cut at a high height and a lower height while we monitored both the bagging and mulching features. Then we took each mower up and down a grassy hill to see how they performed. Our final test was testing storage capability.

What You Should Know About Lawn Mowers

Self-propelled lawn mowers can take some of the effort out of walk-behind mowing.

There are two basic types of walk-behind mowers: push and self-propelled.

The push type of mower is usually smaller, lighter, and easier to store. They are used primarily for smaller, level lawns. They are perfect for cleaning up areas that larger riding lawn mowers may miss. They can be run by gasoline, cords, or battery.

lawn, mower, line, grass, using

Self-propelled lawn mowers usually have a larger cutting diameter and can move on their own through operator controls. These mowers can also be powered by gasoline, cords, or battery. Since they take the brunt of the pushing away, self-propelled mowers are perfect for larger lawns up to a half-acre, and they can easily handle hills and sloped lawns. These self-propelled mowers aren’t fully robotic lawn mowers so you still have to do some work guiding them around your yard.

What Is A Self-propelled Lawn Mower?

The first self-propelled lawn mowers started to appear in the late-1960s. As suburbia grew and lawns got larger, pushing a heavy steel mower around on a summer afternoon wasn’t what most people wanted to be doing.

The first self-propelled mowers had primitive front-wheel drive systems that worked well enough, but the mowers often moved along too slowly. Sure, you weren’t pushing but you were caught in a slow-moving lawn-cutting procession. Early mowers either moved too slowly or too fast to match a natural walking speed.

Today’s mowers offer a much better propulsion system. The Honda NeXite Variable Speed 4-in-1 Gas Walk Behind Self-propelled Mower with Select Drive Control, for example, allows a variety of walking speed settings. Owners can literally dial in their preferred walking speed so that they become one with the mower, not being pulled and not having to push.

The Ego Power Select Cut 56-Volt Brushless 21-in Self-propelled Cordless Electric Lawn Mower even allows the operator to drive out to the lawn without the blades turning. That is a great feature.

Today’s self-propelled mowers reduce operator fatigue and make cutting the grass easier than years ago. Self-propelled mowers make cutting on hills safer and more efficient. And with modern speed options they make a summertime chore a little more enjoyable.

Gasoline, Corded Electric, or Battery—Which Lawn Mower is Right for You?

Battery-powered lawn mowers can be powerful and efficient.


Gasoline-powered lawnmowers have kept lawns manicured for decades. They are powerful, reliable, and affordable, and come with features such as self-propelled movement, mulching features, and self-cleaning availability. They are powerful enough for large lawn care jobs and can tackle any lawn from a quarter- to half-acre acre. Any lawn bigger than that would necessitate a riding mower.

But gas-powered mowers emit dangerous carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons, require yearly maintenance, and require the storage of gasoline and oil. This may not be suitable for some consumers.

Corded Electric

Corded electric mowers have been around for years and were historically the choice of consumers who had smaller lawns and didn’t need the more powerful gasoline mower. While powerful enough to get most cutting or trimming jobs done, the one obvious drawback to a corded mower is the electrical cord.

For any yard worthy of mowing, a long electrical extension cord is required to power the mower. This can be a minor annoyance, such as having to keep the cord free from getting tangled in trees and bushes, to a major annoyance when you drive over it and cut it into small pieces.

However, corded electric mowers require no gas, oil, or maintenance and, other than a blade sharpening from time to time, can perform reliably for years.


Battery-powered cars, power equipment, and tools have been around for a long time. The electric motors were strong and reliable enough, but the battery was not. Just a few years ago, an electric car could expect to go only 100 miles on a charge, and power tools and equipment didn’t last long either. In the past few years, battery technology has improved by leaps and bounds.

Electric cars can expect hundreds of miles on a charge and power tools and equipment can last a full day. This lithium battery technology found its way to lawnmowers and it has created a viable option for those consumers who don’t want gas and don’t want a cord. These battery-powered mowers are powerful, efficient, lightweight, and green. Many now use brushless electric motors, which are more efficient, produce more torque, and are longer lasting than the older electric motors with brushes.

How often should I mow my lawn?

Cutting the lawn too often and only cutting it when it gets overgrown are both unhealthy for a lush, beautiful lawn. The rule of thumb in the lawn-care industry is to keep the grass between 3 inches and 3.5 inches in length. This allows the grass to be long enough to thrive in hot, summer weather.

When cutting grass, never take more than a third of the blade at once. In other words, never cut more than an inch or so. Not only does this cause clumping of grass on the lawn or in the mower bag, but it takes too many nutrients and moisture from the grass itself.

After the late winter fertilizer treatments and the often heavy rains, lawns start to come to life. You’ll find that the grass will need cutting every 4 to 5 days in order to remove just enough length. As the summer wanes on and the temperature rises, the grass will grow a bit slower and a once week cutting is adequate.

It is also important to keep the blades of your lawnmower good and sharp. Since the lawnmower blades are often made of steel, they will develop a dull edge after a season of cutting. A dull edge on a blade will tear the grass and not cut it. This may result in browning of the tips of the grass and put more stress on the mower as well.

While you are under the deck checking those blades—and always disconnect the spark plug wire before going under the mower—be sure there is no old clumped up grass clinging to the mower deck.

Meet the testers

Director, Content Development

TJ is the Director of Content Development at Reviewed. He is a Massachusetts native and has covered electronics, cameras, TVs, smartphones, parenting, and more for Reviewed. He is from the self-styled Cranberry Capitol of the World, which is, in fact, a real thing.

Kevin Kavanaugh is a retired public school teacher and a product tester for Reviewed. Kevin has been cutting lawns for just about 50 years. He has always been intrigued by all things mechanical, be it watches, power equipment, vintage bicycles, or classic cars.

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Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you’re confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we’ll compare notes.