10 Best Zero Turn Lawn Mower Reviews in 2020
Let's be honest - mowing lawns is a chore. Big lawn spaces can be pleasant to look at but need the right equipment to take care of efficiently. Instead of a walk-behind mower, you want a motorized sit-on mower that can get into all corners of your garden.
More and more landowners are turning to professional equipment to get the job done. Riding mowers take the effort out of mowing large lawns. With the necessary speed and power, the grass on half an acre can be cut before morning break. But not all sit on mowers are up to the task. What type of mower you choose depends on the size of your land, terrain, budget, and your preferred method of mowing.
There are different types of riding mowers to consider. Most familiar will be the lawn tractor, which looks as it is named. With the engine itself mounted ahead of the rider, it looks like a miniature tractor except that the blade encasing is underneath the rider. While it is great in all terrains, the wheel arrangement makes it very difficult to get into all corners.
Very similar are rear-engined tractors which may be a little shorter but still lack optimal maneuverability.
A zero-turn mower has small wheels in front which turns tightly into every corner. These riding mowers steer the rear wheels individually with lap bars and can turn 180-degrees on the spot, so there is no uncut grass left behind.
Things to consider before Buying
When you are looking for the best zero turn mower to purchase, there are a number of aspects you should consider. A riding mower will be an important investment that you do not want to have sitting in your garage unused. There are several important features to consider.
Getting good value
There are a wide variety of features, specs, and designs to evaluate when you are choosing the best zero turn lawn mower for your needs. Every buyer will be looking for a reliable brand with a good value product as well as a good warranty, but some critical points need to be compared.
A powerful engine with a high top speed and safe to operate
The engine needs to have sufficient power to drive a large cutting blade while mowing the mower and moving at a fast but safe speed. Wider tires not only carry the engine weight better but are also less likely to leave marks on the lawn and will make turning safer. Especially when you will be working in hilly terrain, you should also look for a roll bar for your own protection.
An efficient and effective mower
You will always want to achieve good cutting coverage with enough power behind it. The cutting width measures how wide a swath of grass can be cut in one pass. More compact mowers can have a cut width as low as 30” while bigger mowers will have cutting deck widths of up to 50” or more.
You will need to consider the size of your yard. If you have a smaller area to cut or one with hard-to-reach corners and obstacles like trees, then a smaller cutting width is best.
But if you have a large property with an open layout, then with a larger model you can tackle the job easily and in less time.
And for the best cut-quality, experienced operators will recommend a well-supported deck with a good ability to float’ over the terrain that can follow the ground contour. At the same time, the cutting height needs to be adjustable. And will the chosen model make collecting and disposing of clippings simple?
An easy and comfortable to use machine
For the rider, a well-supported seat is critical along with easy to operate controls. Is the seat high enough, does it have armrests and what is the suspension system, are questions to ask.
Overall the machine should be easy to set up and maneuver. And if the property is large, make sure the unit has a large fuel capacity.
Lastly, any servicing, such as topping up fuel, checking tire pressure and adjusting settings should be straightforward to carry out.
Designed for the job
A zero-turn lawn mower represents an investment for you that will be in use for many years to come. To be sure it is right for the intended job, you need to consider the size of your lawn, how regularly you will be able to mow it and what kind of terrain you have.
For example, for hills or mushy areas, one of the best options for the mower is to have a locking differential, which allows the engine to distribute power equally to the rear wheels for maximum traction.
Below we describe key features of 5 of the best zero turn lawn mower we can recommend. But you need to keep in mind that choosing the right lawnmower needs careful analysis of the engine power, wheels, turning radius, deck design and size, and also the mower’s ability to mow in rugged terrain. To help you with that, we have done the hard work and looked at the most important features for each unit.
1. Husqvarna MZ61
The Husqvarna zero turn mower comes with a reliable 24 HP Kawasaki engine. The transmission is a commercial-grade hydro gear that allows mowing at 8.5 miles per hour which should cover a little more than four acres per hour. It’s been reinforced at the bottom for extra durability.
The 11-gauge steel cutting deck has a wide 61 in. cut. The deck lifting system is ergonomically designed for quick and easy adjustments by the operator, with 12 cutting heights that are easy to control through the foot pedal. Clippings can be mulched, discharged or bagged with a 9-bushel triple bag collection system (both mulching kit and bagger attachment sold separately).
This is a mower that suits larger yards, farms, or commercial properties. The tank has a capacity for five gallons of gas. It comes with aluminum greaseable spindles that are accessible via two locations.
Husqvarna is a reputable brand with years of experience producing quality machines. They are known to offer powerful and efficient machines that operate fairly quietly compared to similarly rated models from other manufacturers.
Why We Like It
Roll-over protection system (ROPS)A toe hitch kit in the back, as well as a bag, can be installed that will pick up all debris The standard vinyl seat has armrests, and a cup holder is available
The Husqvarna MZ61 is a powerful machine that would serve even professionals. This mower comes with a well-thought-out design and makes long hours tolerable with an ergonomic seat design.
2. Troy-Bilt Super Mustang XP
A powerful Briggs & Stratton 724cc OHV engine and an EZT dual Hydro transmission give this mower good power to cut through rough grass. The OHV (Overhead valve technology) provides the machine more power with lower emissions as well as lower fuel consumption. This technology also causes the engines to run cooler resulting in long valve life, as well as prolonging the overall engine life.
The triple-blade system has a 54-inch mowing path, with two wide and durable anti-scalp wheels, as well as a single nose roller located on the deck. The rear wheels are 20” and the front wheels measure 13”, giving the mower good stability when turning.
The Troy Bilt 25HP features a unique design to allow you to maintain better control when working on hills and uneven terrain. To operate in much less than ideal conditions there are rollers guiding the deck over the contours of the terrain.
Why We Like It
An optional back-mounted leaf blower to clear away debris left by cutting your lawn adjustable high back seat and ample legroom built-in deck washing system allowing for the easy underside and blade cleaning
The Troy Bilt 25HP 725cc is an impressive machine that handles hills and rough terrain well. With the triple-blade system, a perfect cut is achievable. And the sturdy design, powerful motor, and ease of operation of this mower make this an excellent choice for anyone looking for durability, comfort, and efficiency.
3. Ariens 991151 Apex
The APEX promises commercial performance for your home yard. Filled with many commercial features such as the 5-1/2-in fabricated deck design made from 10-gauge steel and an industry-leading, fully formed tubular steel frame.
Ariens prides itself on building low-maintenance machines. The constant belt tension system (CBT) is designed to minimize wear and heat while still providing enhanced belt life with minimal adjustment or servicing needed.
This Ariens APEX zero-turn can move up to 8 mph forward and 4 mph in reverse for fast mowing.
Also, noteworthy is the reduced noise level compared to other brands, so if you must work in locations that have noise restrictions this could be a great solution for you.
Why We Like It
Large 22 x 10-12-in rear tires for improved traction and a smoother ride self-adjusting belt technology Able to cut through wet high grass and tall stands of thick weeds
This zero turn mower is a heavy-duty but lightweight mowing solution that can mow super-fast and exceptionally well. Unlike similar-sized mowers, the Ariens Apex 7000 Series with its large tires will protect your lawns.
4. Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1
The Ultima series is the top of the line for the Cub Cadet which it demonstrates with an extensive feature set. Powered by a 23 HP 726cc Kawasaki FR691V series twin-cylinder OHV engine, that runs at speeds up to 7.5 MPH, it is built with a 2” x 2” continuous square tubular steel frame.
The lap bar controlled dual-hydro transmissions also has mow-in-reverse. The 11″x 6″-5″ smooth tread front wheels can pivot 180 degrees without turf damage.
The standard model has a 50” blade with fifteen 1/4″ deck height adjustments, accessed via a deck lift foot pedal.
To make it a comfortable riding experience, the Ultima mowers come with a rubber floor mat for dampening vibrations, a high-back, adjustable seat with over-molded handgrips and polymer seat isolators that provide more shock absorption than traditional springs.
The Ultima mowers are made with maintenance-free spindles and have a hinged floor pan allowing easy access to the deck. Further features are the LED headlights and a standard rear tow hitch.
Why We Like It
Aeroforce deck produces best-in-class cut: finer clippings, fewer clumps, and increased evenness The Strongest Warranty in its class with a 3-year / unlimited-hour warranty Large, premium tire set with Turf Master tread
The Cub Cadet lives up to the brand’s efforts to be making the best cutting, best riding, most durable non-professional zero turn mower on the market.
5. RedMax New RZT48 48" Deck Riding Zero-Turn Mower
With the cutting width of 48 inches and 0 turning radius, this lawn tractor will certainly not disappoint you. However, these are not the only features of this lawn tractor, which sets it apart.
It offers different cutting methods as well as side discharge, mulch, collection, etc. With the help of a steel cutting deck, durability isn't a problem either.
The cutting width of 48 inches means that covering a large area isn't a problem using this lawn tractor. It comes with a fan-cooled gasoline-powered engine that can help you maintain its temperature and thereby reduce the chance of maintenance or wear and tear.
In case you're worried about your comfort, it comes along with the 18-inch seat. That is why; using the lawn tractor would not pose any problem. With the help of the ergonomic control panel, it is easy for you to use this lawn tractor consistently. The large cutting width, along with the 0 turning radius, means that it is an excellent option.
• Powerful engine
• Comfortable to use
• Ergonomic design
• Highly versatile
6. Ariens 915223 Zero Turn Lawn Tractor
Are you looking for an even larger lawn tractor?
If yes, this one with the cutting width of 52 inches will certainly not disappoint you.
In spite of the large size, it has 0 turning radius, which means that steering it around is quite easy.
Are you wondering about its engine power?
Worry not! It has a 23 HP engine. It means that it is quite powerful.
The engine is so strong and powerful that it can work with inclines as well. The noise output is lower, which means that you will not disturb anyone in your house or even in the neighborhood when using this lawn tractor.
With the help of a high back chair and easy control levers, you can use the mower for long hours without any fatigue. The heavy-duty tires also ensure that handling any terrain is not a problem. The larger cutting width and the powerful motor ensure that this is one of the best lawn tractors you can go with.
• No disturbance
• Can handle any terrain
• Easy to control
• Can cover a large area
7. Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp V-Twin 34” Zero Turn Lawn Mower
This Mower is suited for both small and medium-sized lawn mowing requirements. It has a 34" cutting blade which enables you to cut grass of all sizes at standard width. The engine is 19/660 cc, which powers the mower for quicker lawn mowing. It's gasoline-powered, which is readily available at an affordable price.
This model is one of the most cherished zero turn lawn mowers. Having a rating of 5/5 on Amazon gives it the lead in customer satisfaction.
The consumers giving their reviews are described as the “amazing riding and mowing experience" of the lawn mowers. Commercial lawn mowers have praised the number of years they have used this model without fail. The spare parts are readily available as most users say.
A customer in Amazon says, “Bought one elsewhere... but | want to sing the praises... You will not be disappointed." This makes you understand why this mower is worth buying.
8. Husqvarna 2254 54 in. 26 HP Zero-Turn Riding Lawn Mower
This model provides a reliable speed of 6.5 MPH when cutting grass, making it efficient in time-saving. The 26 horsepower engine gives a good startup and propelling during lawn mowing.
It has pending park brakes that control outward and inward movement of the lever. It's reinforced with steel making it very durable. Air induction technology that draws air from all sides increases the efficiency of cutting grass. giving a nice cut. The 54-inch cutting decks make the mowing easier.
With this model. the grass clippings can be mulched or discharged. You, therefore, will not bother about them. The transmission of this model does not need any maintenance. This makes it a favorite for many consumers. With a rating of 4.5 over 5, it guarantees you will high level of acceptance. Clients who have bought and used it before have described it as “an incredible machine."
9. Troy-Bilt Mustang Fit Zero-Turn Riding Lawn Mower
It has a 452cc engine size that provides high transmission to mow large lawns. It's embedded with a 34-inch cutting deck sweeping a wide grass path at a time. It has an in-built mow-in-reverse feature that guarantees proper control while mowing. The seats have dual suspension springs making them very comfortable. They also have a padded seat that adds comfort while mowing.
This model has adjustable 8- position heights while mowing, enabling you to maneuver around flower beds and other obstacles. The cutting blade rotates at a maximum speed of 7 MPH, giving you a faster grass cut.
You will also get a warranty. When the machine fails, you can go back and get a free replacement from the store. Purchase this model and get a two-year residential warranty.
Many clients who have used this model have praised its efficiency. They have also found assembling very easy. For instance, LB, a customer says, “Great mower, very easy to operate, easy on the hands and arms-no strain.”
10. John Deere 20-HP V-Twin Dual Hydrostatic 42-in Zero-Turn Lawn Mower
This mower has a 20 HP engine that gives a free and ready start and power while mowing. It's installed with a hydrostatic transmission embedded with one-inch axles that guarantee the durability of the machine. The blade is 42-inch cutting tall grass at high speeds.
This makes it possible to mow in relatively large lawns. The 15-inch seats provide lumbar support adjustments for different heights giving comfort and a storage unit with a cup holder. The blade speed is 7 mph making it easier to know on level fields and around shrubs.
This Lawn Mower comes with a separate kit that can be installed to enhance mulching. You will not worry about the grass clippings after mowing. They are well mixed with lawn soil. When you buy this product, an inspection is done to test if it's working before delivery. You, therefore, do not need to worry about its work ability. It has a rating of 4.5 stars in Amazon. Over 90% of the consumers have recommended this product for use. In a review, a customer says, “It is very easy to do a nice pattern and can be done quickly.
This machine has a lot of different cutting heights. Overall I love this machine and would recommend it to anyone."
Where to Buy The Zero Turn Lawn Mower Online?
Now that you have an idea of what to consider when looking for the best ride-on mower to suit your property, the next question will be where to buy it? As is normally the case, if you know what you are after you are best to go online, if not to go to a local retail store. The two retailers we recommend are Amazon and Lowe’s.
It is hard to beat Amazon for price and convenience, so you can search for the product of your choice and proceed to check out from there. But sometimes it is important to get hands-on with the physical unit, to talk your choice through with a technical specialist and to know where to turn to should there be issues down the road. Lowes more likely than not has a hardware store not too far away from you.
Zero-turn mowers can take the work out of mowing a large yard and are easy to operate because of their high mowing speeds, and maneuverability. They’re especially great for large properties and for gardeners who don’t want the hard work of pushing a heavy gas mower but still need exceptional maneuverability.
The models compared here are can all be recommended because of their speed, power, and reliability. But there are differences in size, comfort, and accessories that can help determine which one is right for you. You will have to consider power, cutting width, comfort, and design to find the best zero turn lawn mower for your needs.