Things to Consider when Buying a Walk-Behind Lawn Mower

Are you a new homeowner that is in the market for a walk-behind lawn mower? If so, there are several things that you will need to consider before making your purchase. Here is a quick look at a few of them:

Mower’s Power Source

One of the first things that you’ll need to consider when selecting a walk-behind lawn mower is whether or not you want one that is gas powered, electric powered or man powered. Each type has its own pros and cons. My family and I use our walk-behind mower to maintain the grassy ditches that surround our property. As such, we went with a gas powered mower for several reasons. For starters, the areas we needed to mow were nowhere near electrical outlets. We also didn’t want to have to deal with frequent charging. A manual mower wouldn’t have worked for us either because the ditches tend to be muddy and full of thick vegetation. Depending on where you will be mowing, you may be able to get by with an electric or manual mower.

Engine Size and Type

The size of your walk-behind mower’s engine is also important. Most mowers come with either overhead valves or overhead cams. Based on my experience, mowers with overhead valves tend to work well on properties that feature substantial changes in elevations. The mowers with overhead cams tend to work well for lawns that are fairly level. My family and I chose a walk-behind mower with overhead valves because we wanted to use it to mow ditches with steep inclines. You’ll also want to decide whether you want a self-propelled or a push mower. A self-propelled mower is a superlative choice if you have to deal with a large size lawn. Based on my experience, it is less tiring to use than a push mower.

Grass Disposal

The third thing that you will need to consider when choosing a walk-behind mower is whether or not you want one that shoots the grass clippings into the lawn or one that sends the clippings into a bag. We went with a walk-behind mower that shoots the grass back into the lawn because we didn’t want to bag wet and muddy grass. We found it easier to rake the clippings up ourselves and dispose of them by hand. If you have a small to medium size lawn, you may want to go with a mower that shoots the clippings into a bag. I find that such a feature does tend to make clean-up of large areas easier.


The fourth thing that you will need to decide on is what features you want your walk-behind mower to have. Popular features include the ability to achieve a variety of speeds, a blade-break clutch system and an electric start. We went with a blade-brake clutch system, a variable speed feature and a pull start. The blade-brake clutch helped make working around the fence, ditches and drainage pipes easier. So did the variable speed feature. We went with the pull start because in the event of a break down it tends to be easier and cheaper to repair than an electric start.

Killeen Gonzalez has a history of completing home improvement projects with her family.

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