The Top 10 Best Push Reel Mowers of 2016

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Push Reel Mowers: Questions & Answers

What is a push reel lawn mower?

A push reel mower does not use an engine, gas, or oil, so it emits zero pollution. It is also categorized by how the blades move. They spin whenever the mower is being pushed and stop when the mower stops. The number of blades in a reel vary from mower to mower, but they consist of at least one blade, and a bed knife blade that remains stationary.

What are the advantages of push reel lawn mowers over gas or electric-powered ones?

There are lots of advantages that push reel lawn mowers have over other kinds of mowers. For one thing, they are much quieter, as in, almost completely silent. Mowers powered by engines can only get so quiet even with sound dampeners, while with reel mowers, there’s just a light clicking that the blades sometimes make. The lack of an engine also makes push mowers safer. Because the blades stop moving when you stop, there is little to no risk of accidentally getting your foot or hand caught in a blade as it moves. Another major benefit is that they are completely clean and emit no pollution. Along with that (no gas or oil), there is no maintenance to speak of. They are also just much better for your lawn. Reel mowers cut like scissors so the cuts are much more precise and easy on your grass. The results are almost always superior to engine-powered mowers as well; golf courses use reel mowers, so if you want a lawn as beautiful as the country club, a reel mower is the way to go. As an added bonus, push mowers are also significantly cheaper than engine-powered mowers.

What about disadvantages?

Despite the benefits, reel lawn mowers do have disadvantages as well. The most obvious one is that using a reel mower is a lot more work. The mower is powered by you instead of an an engine, so you will be pushing your mower all the way up and down your yard. Using a reel mower on a large lawn would take a lot of effort. Another negative is that push reel mowers are not great at cutting tall or overgrown yards. They almost all need to be used before your yard looks insane or they just push and bend over the long grasses and weeds. They also don’t work on uneven or hilly yards. The last issue is that bagging your grass clippings isn’t really an option with reel mowers. There are some exceptions, but reel mowers are mostly intended as mulchers, with some stand-outs in that area.

What push mowers are best for mulching?

If you are really invested in lawn care, you’ve probably either mulched or considered mulching before. Mulching is basically when you leave organic matter on the lawn to fertilize your grass and help with moisture retention. Leaving grass clippings from mowing is a form of mulching. However, not all mowers cut the grass finely enough to make a good mulch. The Scotts 2000-20 reel lawn mower uses five heat-treated blades that finely-cut grass into a nice mulch. This grass decomposes quickly, feeding your lawn. Another good reel mower for mulching is the GreenWorks 25052. It comes with a 2-in-1 mulch and rear bag, so you can choose to either bag or mulch the grass clippings.

Are there any push reel mowers that I can bag grass with?

You won’t always want to mulch, so there are a few mowers that include grass catchers so you have the option of bagging the clippings. The Sun Joe Mow Joe manual reel mower includes a catcher that can hold up to 6.6 gallons of grass clippings. The catcher is also removable for when you do want to mulch. Another mower that comes with a grass catcher is the GreenWorks 25052. However, the grass catcher has been shown to not work very well. It tends to come off, shedding grass clippings with it.

What mowers are easiest to push?

The biggest concern you probably have about lawn reel mowers is that you have to push them. When looking for a reel mower that is easy to push, there are two primary things to look for: weight and wheels. If the mower weighs a lot, it will be harder to push. The GreenWorks 25052 mower is one of the lightest reels you can get. It weighs 15 pounds, which is about 20 pounds lighter than some other reel mowers. Another lightweight mower that also has good wheels is the Great States 415-16. It weighs about 25 pounds and has 10-inch, ball-bearing wheels that have great traction. The Scotts 2000-20 has dual-wheel tracking technology. It has 6-inch, rear-tacking wheels and 10-inch composite wheels, both with radial tread, so you can easily move through tough patches. The last reel lwan mower that really prioritizes mobility is the Fiskars StaySharp Max reel mower. It uses InertiaDrive, which makes the mower 60% easier to push than other push mowers.

What mowers are best on rough/tough grass?

Not all push reel mowers are good on tough grass. However, there are a few in particular that are especially effective. The Fiskars StaySharp and StaySharp Max both include the StaySharp cutting systems. The blades are designed so they don’t bump or grind together, resulting in sharper, more precise cuts that don’t require annual sharpening. This increases the mower’s cutting power by 50% compared to mowers without the StaySharp system. Another mower with excellent blades is the Scotts 2000-20. It has five heat-treated blades made from heavy-duty steel. These blades are equipped to deal with tougher grass like Bermuda.

What mowers let you choose your grass height?

When you’re cutting your lawn, you probably have an ideal length in mind. You might like very short grass that looks like a golf course, or longer, more luxurious grass that your kids like to go barefoot in. There are several mowers that let you control precisely what height you’d like your grass to be and that have a wider range than other reels. The Fiskars StaySharp (6208) has a height adjustment range of 1-4 inches, which is the on the taller end for reels. The Scotts 2000-20 offers 9 possible heights with the QuickSnap height adjusters. Beginning at 1-inch, you can go up in very small increments to 3 inches.

What kind of reel lawn mower should I get if I want to be able to mow my grass very quickly?

Speed is a primary concern when it comes to mowing with any type of mower. Reelers, because they rely on human strength, are especially concerning in this area. However, there are features to look for that can help speed up the process. One thing to look for is the cutting width. The cutting width is essentially how much grass the mower can cut on one pass. The narrower it is, the more passes it takes to get all the grass. The American Lawn Mower 1815-18 has a wide cutting width of 18 inches. The Scotts 2000-20 adds another 2 inches to that with a 20-inch cutting deck. Another thing to remember is that the easier the mower is to push, the faster you’ll be able to mow.

What is the price range on push reel mowers?

Reel mowers are all much less expensive than engine-powered mowers. There is still a wide range though. The lower end begins at around or just below $100. The GreenWorks and Sun Joe are both around there. The next tier up is in the $140-$180 range, which includes the Scotts 2000-20 and the Great States mowers. The more expensive mowers (both of the Fiskars StaySharp and StaySharp Max) are in the upper $200’s.

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