Zero Turn Lawn Mowers: The Ins and Outs

What Are Zero Turn Lawn Mowers?

Zero turn lawn mowers are specialized lawn mowers that have their mowing deck in the front region of the machine instead of underneath. This type of mower is great for those who enjoy a bit of landscaping but don’t consider themselves to be professionals. They are faster and easier to maneuver, as well as much smaller.

They can be ride-on mowers or walk-behind mowers. Most have four wheels, with two swiveling wheels at the front and two larger wheels at the back. Steering is conducted by operation handles that control each wheel as an individual.

zero turn tractor

Are They Better Than Lawn Tractors?

Depending what it is used for, a zero turn mower can be better than a lawn tractor but isn’t always. As we said, the advantages are speed and movement, with the out-front mowing deck allowing the zero turn mower to get into tight spaces and close to obstacles.

They are ideal for large areas of grass such as sports fields but lose out against lawn tractors when you consider in how they handle hills and uneven terrain. When it comes to the zero turn mower for hills debate, the general consensus is that they aren’t the best choice due to their tendency to flip over on inclines.

zero turn mower before and after the work

A Short History of the Modern Zero Turn Lawn Mower

In terms of the lawn mower scene as a whole, zero turn mowers are relatively new to the game. The out-front deck design goes back as far as the 40s but the term “zero-turn” is dated back to 1966. The first design to include the term was the Hustler, which was produced by Hustler Turf.

Since then, most major lawn mower companies have adapted to a zero-turn machine to their unique style. In the beginning, this style of mower wasn’t quick to catch on. The idea of the zero turn mower was more than the technology available at the time could handle, so purchases were sparse. In addition, these mowers were also pretty expensive; so much so that many households simply couldn’t afford one even if they wanted one.

The invention of hydraulic motors helped the model gain traction, as it made the mower cheaper to produce and, in turn, cheaper to purchase and more readily available. Today, major manufacturers of these mowers include Hustler, Toro, Walker, and John Deere and the speed and efficiency of them makes them a popular piece of garden machinery.

Although they aren’t for everyone, they do suit a large portion of the lawn mower buying market – especially those who live in rural areas and have large yards to tend to.

So, now that you know a bit more about good zero turn lawn mowers, will you be purchasing one? If so, you’re guaranteed to enjoy it as long as you don’t attempt to drive it up steep inclines!