Mowers: Best Mid-Priced Models of 2024 Season

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Mowers

Mowers

The traditional mower market is undergoing a quiet revolution, with innovations such as battery-operated models turning mowing into a neighbor-friendly pursuit.

Do you have a lawn that’s bigger than a tennis court? Are you fed up with struggling to push yours?

Have you been thinking about giving up on petrol? Or do you fancy having a striped lawn?

These are all reasons you might find the cheapest mowers don’t work for you.

The mowers in the price band we tested here (£250-500) all have a cutting width of over 40cm but with a range of cutting finishes and power sources.

We tested best on ordinary garden lawns to find the best performers.

Here, we present the most noteworthy models.

Most of these models are petrol-driven: these are the most powerful and are the only sensible choice for extensive lawns or longer grass.

The drawbacks of petrol mowers are weight, noise, and the need for regular servicing.

Electric mowers over 40cm are suitable for tennis court-sized lawns
and are simple to use, but such a long cable is a dangerous hazard if cut or damaged.

Powerful battery mowers are fast appearing on the market and are becoming serious contenders for regularly mown lawns: this is the quietest type, easy to use, and long-lasting lithium-ion batteries.

Heavily discounted models are usually cheap for a reason – with parts no longer available or less durable construction.

One of the advantages of shopping at DIY stores over buying by phone or internet is that you may handle machines if they are already unpacked and displayed. (which is not always the case).

However, your new mower would be supplied boxed, so you’d have all the assembly to do.

With all of our trial mowers, it turned out to be very much a case of getting what you pay for, but choosing a mower with the right features for your grass can make a huge difference to the ease of getting the job done.

Buyers’ guide to features

Push Mower

  • Pros:
    • Lower cost: Push mowers are generally cheaper than self-propelled mowers of similar size and power source (gas or electric).
    • Lighter weight: They are easier to maneuver, especially in tight spaces or around obstacles. This is also a plus when lifting the mower to store it or move it from place to place.
    • Simpler design: Less can go wrong with a push mower since no drive system can be maintained.
  • Cons:
    • Requires more effort: You’ll need to push the mower forward as you mow, which can be tiring, especially for more extensive lawns or uneven terrain.
    • Slower mowing: It takes longer to mow a lawn with a push mower than with a self-propelled mower.

Self-propelled mower

  • Pros:
    • Less effort: The mower propels itself forward, making mowing much more accessible, especially for larger lawns, uneven terrain, or inclines.
    • Faster mowing: With a self-propelled mower, you can mow your lawn in less time.
  • Cons:
    • Higher cost: Self-propelled lawnmowers are more expensive than push mowers.
    • Heavier weight: They can be trickier to maneuver in tight spaces or around obstacles due to the added weight of the drive system.
    • More complex design: The drive system adds complexity to the mower, which means there’s more that can go wrong and potentially need repair.

Other factors to consider

  • Lawn size: A push mower may be sufficient if you have a small lawn. For larger lawns, a self-propelled mower will save you time and effort.
  • Terrain: If your lawn is hilly or uneven, a self-propelled mower will make mowing much easier.
  • Your fitness level: If physical limitations make pushing a mower difficult, a self-propelled mower is a good option.

Cutting and collecting

Consider the cutting options concerning the type and size of the lawn.

Pros

  • Clean and tidy lawn: No grass clippings left on the lawn, which can be especially beneficial if you want to avoid:
    • Clippings clumping up on walkways or driveways.
    • Thatch buildup can occur when layers of undecomposed clippings accumulate on the lawn, preventing water and air from reaching the soil.
  • Improved appearance: A lawn with collected clippings may look neater and more manicured.

Cons

  • Less natural fertilization: Grass clippings decompose and return nutrients to the soil, so collecting them can deprive your lawn of some natural fertilizer.
  • More work: You’ll need to frequently empty the grass collection bag, especially if you’re mowing a large lawn.
  • Cost: Lawnmowers with collection capabilities are more expensive than mowers without collection.
  • Environmental impact: Disposing of grass clippings can add to landfill waste.

Alternatives to grass collection

  • Mulching: Lawnmowers with mulching capabilities recut the grass clippings into beautiful pieces that decompose quickly and return nutrients to the soil.
  • Composting: You can compost grass clippings and other yard waste to create nutrient-rich compost for your lawn or garden.

Here are some additional things to consider when deciding whether or not to collect grass clippings:

  • The size of your lawn: Collecting clippings may not be a big deal if you have a small lawn. But for larger lawns, it can be a lot of work.
  • The type of grass you have: Some grass decompose more quickly than others. If you have a fast-growing grass, you may find that collecting clippings is necessary to prevent thatch buildup.
  • Your personal preferences: Some people prefer the look of a lawn with collected clippings.

Noise level

This may be an issue for the user or neighbors. All mowers have a noise rating in decibels (dB): most petrol models are rated between 96db and 98db (just above most motorcycles), and electric and battery models are quieter.

Wear ear protection if you mow a lot.

Weight and storage

These become considerations when getting your mower to your lawn – whether this is an issue depends on the location and layout of your storage facility and garden.

Although the largest mowers tended to be the heaviest, our featured models’ good design and self-propulsion made them easy to use and maneuver.

If your storage space is limited, check how much and easily the handle folds down.

Hyundai HYM510SP 4-Stroke Petrol Lawn Mower 173CC Self Propelled 51cm/20 inch Cutting Width

HYM510SP

  • 🔵 Impressive Power: The HYM510SP Is Powered By A Hyundai 3.6 kW IC200VE 4 Stroke Petrol Engine With Recoil Start Giving You Reliable Power When You Need It Most
  • 🔵Innovative Cutting: With A 51cm Cutting Width, The HYM510SP is The Perfect Choice For Medium To Large Sized Lawns.
  • 🔵Quick Release Grass Collection Box: The Large 70L Grass Collection Box Means The Time Spent Emptying The Grass Is Hugely Reduced. Furthermore, The Quick Release Collection Box Allows You To Empty Your Grass Without Spillage – Easily.
  • 🔵 Easy Height Adjustment: Forget Adjusting The Height On Individual Wheels Or Front And Back; the HYM510SP Allows You To Choose From 5 Different Heights of Cut By Using The Height Adjustment Lever (25-75mm)
  • 🔵 Compact Design For Storage: For Easy Storing The Handles Can Fold Down Over The Lawn Mower Making Storage Compact, Ideal For The Garden Shed, Garage, or Transporting.
  • 🔵 Covered by Hyundai 3 year platinum warranty for peace of mind.

 

Murray EQ500X – 18 Inch/46 cm Self-Propelled Petrol Lawnmower with Briggs & Stratton 575EX Series Engine Including Mulching Plug

Murray EQ500X

  • Reliable, powerful, and easy to start Briggs & Stratton 140cc 575EX Series petrol engine
  • 18 inch/46 cm Durable steel deck for increased protection against damage and corrosion
  • Centrally adjustable cutting height ranging from 28 mm to 92 mm in 6 positions
  • 4-in-1 functionality: Bagging, rear, and side discharge and mulching
  • Large 60 Litre grass catcher
  • All Murray petrol lawnmowers are supported by the extensive network of Briggs and Stratton, and Murray authorized dealers
  • This mower requires 0.5 Litre SAE30 4-stroke oil for the engine; not included in the box, please buy separately
  • 2-year limited consumer warranty

Hyundai HYM80LI460SP 80V Lithium-Ion Cordless Battery Powered Self Propelled Lawn Mower 18” Cutting Width With Battery & Charge’

Hyundai HYM80LI460SP

  • 🔵 No Cables, No Petrol, No Pollution – charge the batteries, and you’re ready to go.
  • 🔵 Powered by 2X Samsung 40v lithium-ion 2.5Ah battery, designed for 1000+ charges.
  • 🔵 452mm Cutting width it’s ideal for cutting medium to large-sized lawns.
  • 🔵 Durable steel chassis weighing just 29.8kg with adjustable cutting heights from 25mm to 75mm.
  • 🔵 Covered by Hyundai UK 3 year warranty.