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Lawn Mower Buying Guide

To achieve a great-looking lawn, you need a mower that's easy to operate and a good fit for your yard. Whether you want the classic look of a manual reel lawn mower or all the features of a gas-powered unit, The Home Depot has the trusted brands and selection to help keep your lawn freshly manicured all season long.

Choosing the Right Lawn Mower

Before you start cutting, take the time to consider the following questions:

Do you prefer an electric, gas or manual reel lawn mower?

If your lawn is smaller than a 1/4 acre, a manual reel or electric lawn mower is a good option. If your lawn is bigger than a 1/4 acre, the high power and wider cutting path of a gas-powered mower may be more suitable. Your own personal preference will also play a role in your purchasing decision.

How do you want the lawn mower to dispose of the grass clippings?

In most cases, a manual reel lawn mower will discharge grass clippings onto your lawn. Look for a gas or electric mower to offer more options for bagging and mulching clippings.

Would a lawn tractor be a better investment?

If your lawn is larger than a 1/2 acre, operating a lawn tractor, not a lawn mower, is less likely to result in user fatigue when mowing for extended periods. Learn more in our Lawn Tractor Buying Guide.

Types of Lawn Mowers

Gas Lawn Mower

Gas-powered lawn mowers are ideal for large lawns, up to a 1/2 acre in size, and can easily handle uneven terrain. Engine power will vary between models; 190cc can tackle the toughest turf. Some units may also feature a self-propel system that can be set to your walking speed, and deck width varies between 19" to 22", which can make short work out of tall, thick grass. There are also 3-in-1 gas-powered lawn mowers that allow you to choose between bagging, mulching or side-discharge of grass clippings.

Eco-Friendly Lawn Mowers

Electric lawn mowers run quietly, save fuel and maintenance costs, and offer many of the same features as gas models. They are either corded or cordless, with deck sizes from 17" to 20", and can offer similar 3-in-1 options for mulching, bagging or side-discharge of clippings.

Most corded electric models have 6 to 12-amp motors. If your lawn is at or under a 1/3 acre, you may want a cordless model that uses a battery for more mobility. If you prefer to work using battery power but enjoy the look of a manual reel lawn mower, consider purchasing a battery-powered precision-reel mower.

Manual Reel Lawn Mowers

The most basic type of mower is a manual reel lawn mower, which cuts grass using a series of curved blades that rotate when pushed. These lawn mowers are easy to use, quiet to operate and require no gas (and therefore produce zero emissions).

Manual reel mowers work best on flat and even lawns that are less than a 1/4 acre in size. They are more economical to own and require little maintenance, but remember to regularly sharpen the blades so they're easier to operate and cut grass more evenly.

Lawn Mowers: At a Glance

Mower Type Ideal Lawn Benefits Points to Consider
  • Small to large - up to a 1/2 acre
  • Able to cut uneven terrain
  • 2 or 4-cycle engine
  • High powered
  • Wide cutting path
  • Handle thick grass
  • Require periodic maintenance
  • Push or self-propel
  • Fuel powered
  • 3-in-1 mowers can bag, mulch or discharge clippings
  • Small to medium — up to a 1/3 acre
  • Ideal for flat lawns
  • No emissions
  • Quiet operation
  • Easy startup
  • Wide cutting path
  • Corded or cordless
  • Push or self-propel
  • Narrower cutting path
  • Choose from bagging, mulching and/or discharge of clippings
Manual Reel
  • Small — less than a 1/4 acre
  • Ideal for flat lawns
  • Quiet operation
  • No pollutants
  • Low Maintenance
  • Economical
  • Manual push operation
  • Fewer options for discharging grass clippings
Don't Forget
A good mower will keep your grass green and healthy, but there are also lawn mower accessories that can make the job easier. For example, a gas can, funnel oil and fuel stabilizer can make filling up the tank on your lawn mower faster and more convenient.

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