Best Ride-On Lawn Mower 2020 – Buyers Guide

What is the best ride-on mower?

Choosing the best ride-on mower may be a daunting task most most. How do you know if you really need a ride-on mower, and if so, which one?

Lawn Tractor and ride-on mower reviews

Well, to help you make that decision I have put together this guide to help you understand what these ride-on mowers can and can’t do and who they are best suited to.

So what may be the best mower for one person may not necessarily be the best for another. By reading my guide to ride-on mowers (and Lawn Tractors) will enable you to make a more informed decision as to what features to look out for, and ensure that you spend your hard earned cash on a dependable mower that will meet your lawn requirements.

If you have a large area or garden to mow or have mobility issues, then ride-on mowers is most probably the best option to consider. So how big does your lawn need to be to warrant a ride-on mower? Smaller than you think!! Most believe that you need acres of lawn to justify the investment in a ride-on mower, however with mowers as small as 60cm (24 inches) wide and designed for lawns around 400m² to 500m² that have the ability to fit through a standard sized garden gate, this does not need to be the case.

Remember, a large self propelled walk behind mower will easily cut a lawn of 500m² (a tennis court is around 260m²) albeit taking more time and effort than that of a ride-on mower.

Typically, there are two types of ride-on mowers one with a front and one with a rear engine. So, what is the difference?

The ride-on mowers have a rear engine and generally are less powerful than the front engine lawn tractors.

Ride-on mowers are designed for large lawns, however lawn tractors are suited better for even larger and trickier lawns with steep slopes.

All models vary considerably in terms of cost, power, cutting width and features.

Before you purchase a ride-on mower you need to consider the size of your lawn, access to your garden, storage (ideally should be stored under cover), budget and any suitable alternatives such as a large self propelled petrol mower or even a robotic mower.

You should also consider the ongoing general maintenance of your ride-on mower (fuel/oil/servicing), warranty and additional features such as mulching.

Accessing the engine on a lawn tractor is normally easier than that of a ride-on mower. The reason for this is that a lawn tractor normally has a bonnet that can be easily lifted for access, the engine on a ride-on mower can be located under the seat, therefore making access more difficult.


What Features Should You Look out for on a Ride-on Mower?

  • Lawn Tractor ReviewsCutting features such as bagging, mulching and side discharge should be considered to ensure that you purchase a mower that is suitable for your needs long term.
  • The size of the catcher bag and fuel tank are also important to ensure you get the most coverage and limit the number of interruptions and stops. Some models of ride-on mower have automated tipping system to empty the grass clipping, so there is no heavy lifting required. Remember, if this feature is not present the larger the grass collection box the heavier it will be to remove and empty.
  • The quality of tyres is one area that most people may overlook, however in wetter conditions you really do not want to be sliding round or getting stuck on the lawn.
  • Another important point to consider when purchasing your ride-on mower is the cutting width. Remember an average garden gate is 71cm, and believe it or not, ride on mowers are available that will fit through this gap. So remember to identify the narrowest area your mower will need to fit through and your narrowest strip of lawn that will need to be cut.
  • Some models are fitted with an anti-scalping plate that helps to protect the lawn and the blade on uneven surfaces or if the mower has been set too low.
  • Some higher end ride-on mowers are also 4-wheel drive, however this will add significantly to the cost of your investment. So make sure that this is something that is absolutely essential for you.
  • Some models have semi transparent fuel tanks so you can easily see the level of the fuel and when it needs re-filling.
  • Noise levels can vary greatly between different models of ride-on mower, so this is also something you should consider. We would always recommend that you should wear ear defenders to protect you whenever using your ride-on mower.
  • Again, look at your lawn and obstacles as manoeuvrability and turning circle vary between brands and models of ride-on mowers. As tractors are much larger, they do not score as highly in this area.
  • Cleaning is also an important consideration and varies again from model to model. Some models provide a hose connection where a standard garden hose is attached whilst the mower is being run to enable easy cleaning. Other models require the cutting deck to be lifted for access to cleaning.
  • The last important consideration is the number and range of cutting heights that your ride-on mower can accommodate to cover all seasons and lawn types. You should be looking for at least 5 cutting heights with a variation of about 40 to 50mm.

 


Conclusion

Best Ride-on Mower ReviewsTo be honest, if you have a lawn that is less than 400 square metres in size then you may be better of purchasing a self propelled walk behind petrol lawn mower as even the smallest ride-on mower is designed for larger lawns.

Bear in mind, that even the smallest ride-on mower will have a grass collector capacity of around 150 litres compared to 50 litres of a large walk behind petrol mower. Of course, some ride-on mowers do not collect the grass clippings.

Once you have chosen and received your ride-on mower, there is no doubt that they are the most fun, enjoyable and efficient way to cut your lawn. Also they will be the envy of your neighbours!

Below I have chosen my best 3 ride-on mowers for 2020 here in the UK. They have been chosen for their features, performance, reliability and value for money.


Best Ride-on Mowers Reviewed Below


1. Lawn-King 60SDE Review – 60cm /24″ cut ride-on lawnmower

Best Compact Budget Ride-on Mower – No Grass Collection

Lawn-king 60SDE Review

Summary

The Lawn-King 60SDE is a compact 60cm cut and ride mower that has a side discharge capability and a 196cc MTD single cylinder electric start engine.  The Lawn-King 60SDE weighs 111kgs and provides 5 cutting heights from 38mm to 95mm. It is equipped with 6 forward and 6 reverse speeds via a gearless shift. The turning circle on this ride-on mower is just 46cm for easy manoeuvrability. The Lawn-King 60SDE comes with a limited 2 year domestic warranty and is delivered fully assembled and ready to use.

Specifications

  • Garden size: 2,000m²
  • Cutting width: 60cm
  • Cutting height: 5 cutting heights from 38mm to 95mm
  • Cutting Features: Side discharge (Optional mulching kit)
  • Grass collector Size: No

Lawn-King 60SDE Video

To give you a visual representation of the Lawn-King 60SDE please see the video below.

Cutting Deck

The Lawn-King 60SDE has a narrow cutting deck of just 60cm and is designed for lawns up to 2,000m². This deck size is ideal for those that have narrow strips of lawn or need to navigate the mower through a garden gate or between buildings etc.

Engine & Transmission

This mower has a gearless transmission with 6 speed forward and 6 speed reverse, meaning the speed is easily adjusted via the foot pedal with no levers or switches getting in the way or causing complication.

The engine is an MTD 196cc Single Cylinder Electric Start engine that provides enough power for the most demanding lawns and conditions.

Cutting System

The Lawn-King 60SDE only provides the option to side discharge. There is no option to collect the grass clippings on this model. You can however purchase an optional mulching kit that will then add the ability for the Lawn-King 60SDE to mulch the cuttings.

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Turning Radius

The turning radius is important as it dictates the manoeuvrability of the ride-on mower and its ability to turn sharply in tight corners or around obstacles on the lawn. The Lawn-King 60SDE has a very respectable 46cm turning circle and compares favourably to other brands at this price point and size.

Practicalities

This is a fantastic ride-on mower that is going to make light work of cutting a large lawn and won’t break the bank. Yes it does not have all the bells and whistles of other more expensive ride-on mowers, but what it does do, it simply gets the job done with minimal effort and no fuss. With its 40cm rear wheels and 33cm front wheels the mower is stable and comfortable to ride even on uneven surfaces. The 5 cutting heights from 38mm to 95mm are perfectly adequate for most lawn types and the electric start makes it quick and easy to start.

Yes this mower does not have a collection bag capability and there is no option to add one. As mentioned above, you can however purchase and optional mulching kit which is a nice touch, because with this installed there is no reason to collect the grass cuttings anyway!

Overall the Lawn-King 60SDE is a good value, well built ride-on mower that will always be ready to get the job done quickly and efficiently without gadgets and features you simply don’t need (and don’t want to pay extra for).

Lawn-King 60SDE Specification Sheet

Click here to access the Lawn-King 60SDE specification sheet.

Pros

  • Narrow for easy access and manoeuvrability
  • Easy to use with 6 reverse and 6 forward speeds
  • Additional trailers can be added for flexibility
  • Efficient
  • Reasonably priced

Cons

  • No Grass Collection
  • Mulching is an optional extra

Where Should I Purchase This Lawn-king 60SDE?

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Lawn-king 60 sde 60 centimetre /24' cut ride on lawnmower powered by a...
2 Reviews
Lawn-king 60 sde 60 centimetre /24" cut ride on lawnmower powered by a...
  • 60SDE 60cm cut Side Discharging Ride on Lawnmower. Powered by an MTD 196cc Single Cylinder Electric Start engine.
  • Side discharge only, not capable of grass collection. Suitable for lawns and rough grass areas.
  • Delivered fully assembled and ready to use, including Pre-delivery Inspection. After sales back up and spare parts.
  • Two years limited domestic warranty.**Garden Machinery Spares is the only 100% GENUINE seller able to offer Lawn-King branded ride on lawnmowers on AMAZON , all other sellers may be non genuine sellers with no access to our products and are violating our registered trademark **

Last update on 2020-04-10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

 


Click here to see a full review of the Lawn-king 60SDE

 


2. Castelgarden XD140 Review 98cm Cut Side Discharge Tractor

Best Budget Lawn Tractor for Big Gardens – No Grass Collection

Summary

Castel Garden XD140 Review

The Castelgarden XD140 lawn tractor is a rear wheel drive, cut and ride mower that has a side discharge, mulch capability and a large 98cm cutting width. The Castelgarden XD140 weighs 160kgs and has a Briggs & Stratton 344cc Engine. There are 7 cutting heights from 25mm to 80mm and is equipped with 5 forward and 1 reverse speed via a a single shift lever. The turning circle on this ride-on mower is just 70cm for easy manoeuvrability. The Castelgarden XD140 comes with a very good  limited 5 year domestic warranty and is delivered fully assembled and ready to use.

Specifications

  • Garden size: 4,500m²
  • Cutting width: 98cm
  • Cutting height: 7 cutting heights from 25mm to 80mm
  • Cutting Features: Side discharge and mulching kit included
  • Grass collector Size: No

Castelgarden XD140 Video

To give you a visual representation of the Castelgarden XD140 please see the video below.

Cutting Deck

The Castelgarden XD140 has a large cutting deck of 98cm and is designed for lawns up to 4,500m². This deck size is ideal for those that have large areas of lawn that require cutting quickly and efficiently.

Engine & Transmission

This lawn tractor has a mechanical transmission via a single lever with 5 speed forward and 1 speed reverse. The speed change is easy and smooth making this lawn tractor simple to use.

The engine on this Castelgarden XD140 is the ever popular, reliable and powerful Briggs & Stratton 344cc PB series 3130 AVS Engine that performs impeccably as you would expect. Combined with the low vibrations make this my best choice budget lawn tractor for large gardens.

Cutting System

The Castelgarden XD140 has the ability to side discharge as well as mulch the grass cuttings; there is no option to collect the grass clippings on this model. There is the option to purchase a trailer hitch kit to allow other equipment to be towed such as carts and fertiliser spreaders making your lawn tractor more versatile.

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Turning Radius

The turning radius is important as it dictates the manoeuvrability of the ride-on mower or lawn tractor and its ability to turn sharply in tight corners or around obstacles on the lawn. A lawn tractor will always have a larger turning radius than a ride-on mower, however this Castelgarden XD140 has a very respectable 70cm turning circle and compares favourably to other brands at this price point and size.

Practicalities

This is a proficient and much loved lawn tractor from Castelgarden that is going to make light work of cutting a large lawn and won’t break the bank. It really does feel very comfortable and enjoyable to ride and more importantly gets the job done effectively with minimal fuss and no complications. With its large wheels the tractor is stable and comfortable to ride on uneven surfaces and the huge 6 litre fuel tank will ensure minimal stops to refuel. The impressive 7 cutting heights from 25mm to 80mm are perfectly adequate for most lawn types and the electric start and blade engagement make it quick and easy to get started.

As already mentioned above this mower does not have a collection bag capability, however the Castelgarden XD140 does come supplied with a mulching kit so why would you want to collect the cuttings anyway. As we all know mulching is beneficial to the health and condition of your lawn.

Overall the Castelgarden XD140 is a fantastic, great value, well built lawn tractor that will never disappoint. The ride is comfortable and the features are there to get the job of cutting your large lawn done quickly and effortlessly. No fancy gimmicks, with this Castelgarden XD140, that you simply won’t use and just add unnecessary cost to your purchase.

Castelgarden XD140 User Manual

Click here to access the CastelGarden XD140 user manual.

Pros

  • Large cutting width but maintains good manoeuvrability
  • Easy to use with 5 forward and 1 reverse speeds
  • Ability to mulch out of the box
  • Trusted brand for after sales support and parts/consumables
  • Efficient
  • Reasonably priced

Cons

  • No Grass Collection

Where Should I Purchase This CastelGarden XD140?

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Castel Garden XD140 98cm Cut Side Discharge Tractor
  • Powered by a Briggs & Stratton 344cc Engine
  • 98cm/38.5" Cut Side Discharge Ride on Tractor
  • Includes Mulch Plug & Tow Hitch
  • Five years limited domestic warranty.
  • Delivered fully assembled with Pre-delivery inspection. After sales back up and spare parts.

Last update on 2020-04-10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

 

Click here for a full review of the CastelGarden XD140

 


3. Racing 62PR Review Ride-On Mower

Racing 62PR ReviewBest Compact Budget Ride-on Mower – With Grass Collection

Summary

The Racing 62PR is a popular and compact 61cm cutting width ride-on mower with a convenient electric start high capacity 196cc four stroke engine.  The Racing 62PR is one of the most compact ride-on lawn mowers currently available in the UK, it is lightweight at 136kg and will fit through the average sized garden gate. This rear wheel drive ride-on lawn mower has 4 forward and 1 reverse transmission speed with impressive 5 cutting heights that range from 30mm to 70mm. The Racing 62PR is a grass collection ride-on mower that has an impressive 150 litre capacity grass collector. This ride-on mower comes fully assembled with a 2 year warranty. 

Specifications

  • Garden size: up to 2,000m²
  • Cutting width: 61cm
  • Cutting height: 5 cutting heights from 30mm to 70mm
  • Cutting Features: Cut and Collect
  • Grass collector Size: 150 litre

Cutting Deck

The Racing 62PR has a compact cutting deck of just 61cm and is designed for lawns up to 2,000m². This deck size is one of the most compact available on the market today making this Racing 62PR ideal to manoeuvre between obstacles and through tight spaces. The deck has a manual blade engagement system, is made of steel and is sturdy and robust.

Engine & Transmission

Racing 62PR EngineThis ride-on mower is rear wheel drive and has a 4 speed forward and 1 speed reverse transmission with the following speeds-

Forward: Between 1.5 and 4.6km/h

Reverse: 2.3km/h

The speed change is easy and smooth making this ride-on mower pleasure to use.

The engine is Racing’s own 6.5hp / 4.8kW @ 3600rpm 19cc Engine with a single cylinder, more than adequate to power the 61cm blade and deal with the toughest conditions. The engine is a clean-running and fuel-efficient 4 stroke engine.

A great feature of this Racing 62PR is that it has an electric start ignition for hassle free starting, nice one Racing!

Cutting System

The Racing 62PR only has the option to cut and collect the grass cuttings, there is no option to side discharge or mulch on this model. This will suit most people that purchase this ride-on mower as that is what this mower does best with its 150 litre collection collector. If you want a non-collect mower I would recommend the Lawn-King 60SDE.

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Limitations/Downsides

Racing 62PR Cutting HeightsIt can’t all be so good, I hear you say. Well, no there are some downsides to the Racing 62PR ride-on mower, but before I tell you what they are, you need to remember this mower is priced at under £1,000. So you are not paying for a top end ride-on mower but a great value one that gets the job done without all the bells and whistles.

This mower only collects the grass cuttings in its large 150 litre grass collector. It does NOT side discharge and it does NOT have the option to mulch the cuttings. If you want a ride-on mower that collects the cuttings (as most would) then no problem.

This mower will not cut the lawn when you are reversing only when moving forward in any one of the 4 gears.

The user manual could be better, however support over the phone is helpful and responsive, if needed.

Practicalities

Well, what can I say about this popular compact ride-on mower? It has to be the best in class for its pure compactness, simplicity, performance and value for money. This mower retails at under £1,000, so simply you won’t find a better ride-on mower at this price point. Yes it does have a few niggles (see cons below), and yes it does lack some features found on higher end more costly mowers (mulching, side discharge), but for shear value for money this Racing 62PR wins hands down.

The compact size opens up the convenience of owing a ride-on mower to so many more gardeners, this mower will literally fit through a garden gate. Yes it is designed for lawns up to 2,000m² but the compact size means even someone with a lawn half that size could easily benefit nicely from this mower.

Remember this Racing 62PR has a huge 150 litre grass collection capacity, that’s 3 times the size of your average walk behind petrol mower, combine this with the large capacity fuel tank meaning that you really will be keeping stops to a minimum (if at all).

This mower will require some minor assembly when it arrives (next day delivery is available at no additional cost) that will normally take around 30 to 40 minutes. Don’t worry though, assembly is very straight forward and basically involves screwing the seat and steering wheel on and assembling the grass catcher. Add the engine oil, charge the battery and you are good to go!

Racing 62PR TransmissionOverall, the Racing 62PR had to be my top pick for a compact ride-on mower that collects the grass cuttings. Why? Well because it is such great value for money for what you get. You won’t be disappointed with the performance with this budget ride-on mower if you understand its limitations as detailed above (features you may not need anyway).

Pros

  • Narrow for easy access and manoeuvrability
  • 150 litre grass collector
  • Easy to use with 4 forward and 1 reverse speeds
  • Fuel Efficient
  • Excellently priced

Cons

  • No Mulching or side discharge option
  • User manual not great (support from MowDirect is fantastic if needed)

Where Should I Purchase This Racing 62PR?

MowDirect are the UK’s leading garden machinery website with outstanding customer care, low prices and next day delivery included. Click the button below now to get the latest price for this Racing 62PR ride-on mower.

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Click here to see a full review of the Racing 62PR

 


Best Ride-on Mowers Comparison Table

Below I have created a handy comparison table to help you see the differences between the ride-on mowers.

Best Compact Budget Ride-on Mower – No Grass Collection
Lawn-king 60 sde 60 centimetre /24" cut ride on lawnmower powered by a...
Best Budget Lawn Tractor for Big Gardens – No Grass Collection
Castel Garden XD140 98cm Cut Side Discharge Tractor
Best Compact Budget Ride-on Mower – With Grass Collection
Racing 62PR Ride-On Mower
Product
Lawn-king 60 sde 60 centimetre /24" cut ride on lawnmower powered by a...
Castel Garden XD140 98cm Cut Side Discharge Tractor
Racing 62PR Ride-On Mower
Engine
MTD 196cc
Briggs & Stratton 344cc
Racing 6.5hp / 4.8kW @ 3600rpm
Speeds
6 speed forward and 6 speed reverse
5 speed forward and 1 speed reverse
4 speed forward and 1 speed reverse
Garden Size
2000m²
4500m²
2,000m²
Deck Size
60cm
98cm
61cm
Collection Box Size
N/A
N/A
150 litre
Cutting height
5 cutting heights from 38mm to 95mm
7 cutting heights from 25mm to 80mm
5 cutting heights from 30mm to 70mm
Collection Box Collection
Side Discharge
Mulching
Customer Rating
-
Price
£840.00
Price not available
£999
Best Compact Budget Ride-on Mower – No Grass Collection
Lawn-king 60 sde 60 centimetre /24" cut ride on lawnmower powered by a...
Product
Lawn-king 60 sde 60 centimetre /24" cut ride on lawnmower powered by a...
Engine
MTD 196cc
Speeds
6 speed forward and 6 speed reverse
Garden Size
2000m²
Deck Size
60cm
Collection Box Size
N/A
Cutting height
5 cutting heights from 38mm to 95mm
Collection Box Collection
Side Discharge
Mulching
Customer Rating
Price
£840.00
More information
Full Review
Best Budget Lawn Tractor for Big Gardens – No Grass Collection
Castel Garden XD140 98cm Cut Side Discharge Tractor
Product
Castel Garden XD140 98cm Cut Side Discharge Tractor
Engine
Briggs & Stratton 344cc
Speeds
5 speed forward and 1 speed reverse
Garden Size
4500m²
Deck Size
98cm
Collection Box Size
N/A
Cutting height
7 cutting heights from 25mm to 80mm
Collection Box Collection
Side Discharge
Mulching
Customer Rating
-
Price
Price not available
More information
Full Review
Best Compact Budget Ride-on Mower – With Grass Collection
Racing 62PR Ride-On Mower
Product
Racing 62PR Ride-On Mower
Engine
Racing 6.5hp / 4.8kW @ 3600rpm
Speeds
4 speed forward and 1 speed reverse
Garden Size
2,000m²
Deck Size
61cm
Collection Box Size
150 litre
Cutting height
5 cutting heights from 30mm to 70mm
Collection Box Collection
Side Discharge
Mulching
Customer Rating
Price
£999
More information
Full Review

Last update on 2020-04-10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API