(StatePoint) It’s no secret that your home’s exterior gets the spotlight during the summer. Once the weather warms up, neighborhoods fill with the sounds of yardwork. Expertly manicured grass and enviable curb appeal require maintenance and the right equipment.
If “old reliable” isn’t cutting the lawn as well as it used to and you’re searching for a new mower, there are many makes and models to consider. One type you may be less familiar with is the zero-turn mower, which offers superior maneuverability and can get yard work done faster than a standard walk-behind mower.
“A high-quality zero-turn mower means getting back to relaxing in your free time faster,” says Adam Mullet, vice president of sales and new products at Hustler Turf Equipment, a leading brand of outdoor power equipment, and the originator of the zero-turn mower.
When shopping around, consider the following tips and insights:
Don’t Shop With Your Wallet
As with any home appliance purchase, this is a big decision. You’ll want something that can withstand the test of time and is backed by warranty. Keep in mind engine size and horsepower. Powerful engines cut grass faster and last longer, but also cost more. Financing options offered by manufacturers can help you avoid compromising.
The size of the area you’ll be cutting matters most.
- A larger deck speeds up mowing and is ideal for big properties with wide open areas of grass.
- The wider the cutting deck, the more grass cut with each pass. If you need to maneuver through tight spaces or have a small yard, consider a machine with a condensed, more easily-controlled mowing deck.
- Zero-turn mowers made for residential use are typically much smaller than the average ride-on mower. For a compact option at a great value, consider the DASH by Hustler Turf. Built to the brand’s high standards, it has a patented automatic park brake, foot-operated deck lift and the ability to fit through most gates, making it a good choice for front and backyard mowing. Available in two welded, fabricated steel deck sizes – 34-inch or 42-inch – with a heavy-duty 1x2 fully tubular frame, it’s small enough for easy garage storage.
- For bigger yards and tougher terrains, consider options like Hustler Turf’s residential FasTrak. Boasting speeds up to 8 MPH, it features a removable floor plan for easy maintenance, a fully welded, tubular frame available in sizes up to 60 inches, and 22-inch large drive tires. A 20-inch high-back seat with full mechanical suspension shields riders from bumps, and cushioning takes pressure off the tailbone and lower back.
Mow in Comfort
You’ll use this machine regularly for years to come, so prioritize comfort. Remember, the open-concept of a zero-turn allows you to get on and off easily. Be sure to sit on each mower and look at the seats and support offered.
Consider visiting locally-owned and operated lawn care centers, where dealers are deeply familiar with product lines, region-specific lawn care needs and ready to answer questions about mower performance and maintenance.