Best Self-Propelled Lawn Mowers 2020 – Reviews & Top Picks
Self-propelled lawn mowers are push mowers without the extreme workout. Depending on whether you want electric or gas, the speed you’re looking for, and how wide a path you’d like to make each turn, there are countless choices. One look at the seemingly unending choices for self-propelled lawn mowers, and you can get overwhelmed quickly.
But we’re here to help! We’ve created a list of the 10 best self-propelled lawn mowers, as well as a buying guide, to help make it easier to decide which one fits your needs. Read on for our recommendations.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|Best Overall||Craftsman M275||
|Best Value||Lawn-Boy 17732||
|Premium Choice||Yard Force||
|Snapper XD 82V||
|Greenworks 21-Inch 40V||
The 10 Best Self-Propelled Lawn Mowers
1. Craftsman M275 Self-Propelled Lawn Mower – Best Overall
Our best overall choice is the Craftsman M275 Self-Propelled Gas Powered Lawn Mower because of its powerful engine. It has many of the best features of self-propelled lawn mowers, including a wide cutting deck of 21 inches. The electric push button makes it easy to start, and it has an auto choke. To accommodate any grass length, the mower has six different adjustable height settings. It also has a three-in-one capability of discharging the grass clippings on the side, rear, or by mulching. To keep it clean and rust-free, it comes with deck wash.
For those looking for a mower with adjustable speeds, however, this might not be the best choice. It only has a single speed, so it’s best for yards with flat terrains.
2. Lawn-Boy Self Propelled Lawn Mower – Best Value
The Lawn-Boy 17732 is the best self-propelled lawn mower for the money because it has many great features for the low price. It has rear-wheel drive, which provides better traction and control on hilly terrain. The cutting width is 21 inches, so you can cut a wider path at once. You can also quickly adjust the cutting heights from the side of the mower, which is convenient when you don’t want to stop mowing. There are six cut position heights to choose from. The engine is a Kohler 149cc, which is nearly as powerful as our number-one pick. It also has a larger bag capacity to contain all your grass clippings. Lastly, it has a great two-year worry-free warranty.
If you’re looking for a lightweight mower, this might not be the best choice. All those features make it quite heavy. Also, the rear wheels don’t turn backward, so it can be difficult to go in reverse.
3. Yard Force Self-Propelled 3-in-1 Mower – Premium Choice
Our premium choice is the Yard Force Self-Propelled 3-in-1 Mower because it can run for up to 100 minutes on a single charge. It comes with two batteries and a fast charger so the mower is ready whenever you need it. It also has a five-year warranty, which is much longer than others on our list. The adjustable speed is good for hills and other difficult terrains. It has a wide 22-inch deck and a three-in-one option for the grass clippings: rear bagging, mulching, or side discharge. We also appreciated the torque-sense technology that gives it more power when needed.
A battery-powered engine might be a problem for some, and it won’t have the same cutting power as an engine fueled by gas. Also, the handlebar bends easily. This can be fixed by hammering it back into place, but for an expensive mower, it’s disconcerting that such an important part can bend out of shape.
4. Snapper Self-Propelled Lawnmower
The Snapper XD Electric Cordless 21-Inch Self-Propelled Lawnmower comes with two batteries and a rapid charger. The powerful battery kit also allows the mower to have variable speeds. It has a wide 21-inch mowing deck for cutting wide paths at one time. The three-in-one grass clippings option allows you to mulch, bag, or use the side discharge to dispose of grass. There is a convenient push-button start, so you don’t have to worry about a faulty pull-cord. It also has a seven-position adjustment for cut height.
Despite this mower being battery powered, it’s heavy, which can make it difficult to maneuver and store. If anything goes wrong with the mower, customer service is also poor. When it comes to the battery life, the stated time of 45 minutes isn’t accurate — it’s usually much less.
5. Greenworks Brushless Self-Propelled Mower
The Greenworks 21-Inch Brushless Self-Propelled Mower is a great lightweight option. It has a 21-inch wide mowing deck and rear-wheel drive, so it can handy trickier yards with hills. This is another mower with a three-in-one design for dealing with grass clippings. You can mulch them, bag them in the rear, or discharge them from the side. We liked the dual-battery port design — this enables one battery to be stored while the other fuels the mower for uninterrupted cutting. It also has an easy push-button start.
The batteries make for a great eco-friendly design, but the mower is unfortunately underpowered. It takes several passes for it to cut standard grass. The battery’s life is not very long-lasting and doesn’t charge quickly either.
6. Honda Self Propelled Lawn Mower
The Honda Self Propelled Lawn Mower features adjustable speed and six adjustable cutting heights. It has a powerful engine, one of the most powerful on this list. There is also an auto-choke system that makes it easy to start. For grass clippings, it has a two-in-one option of side discharge or mulching. If you have a yard with difficult terrain, it has rear-wheel drive and eight-inch wheels.
This is a heavy and difficult-to-maneuver mower due to its added features. It can be especially difficult to pull it back when needed. Also, grass clippings tend to clump together during side discharge.
7. Troy-Bilt Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
The Troy-Bilt Self-Propelled Lawn Mower has a powerful engine but still manages to be lightweight. There’s a wide, 21-inch steel deck to reduce the time you’ll spend mowing, and it has side-mulch capability to dispose of grass clippings. We liked the dual-lever height adjustment so you can choose which fits you best. The eight-inch wheels are large and sturdy.
This one does operate with a pull-cord, which can be frustrating in itself, but it also breaks easily. It can be difficult to operate because it often stalls on rough terrain. This isn’t the best mower for large yards. Lastly, we found the cut to be uneven.
8. PowerSmart DB2321S Lawn Mower
The PowerSmart Lawn Mower is another lightweight option with a powerful 161cc engine. It has the three-in-one option of bag, side discharge, or mulching to dispose of grass clippings. The adjustable cutting height has five positions, so you can choose what best fits your lawn. It also has large eight-inch rear wheels.
The self-propelled drive is short-lived, however, which puts the durability of the mower into question. It has a pull-cord start, which can be hard to use for some. Lastly, it’s made with plastic parts that can break easily.
9. EGO Power+ LM2102SP Self Propelled Mower
The EGO Power+ Self Propelled Mower has many of the same great features as the other mowers on our list, including a 21-inch wide deck so you can mow more of your yard at one time without adding extra weight, as well as a three-in-one grass clipping disposal capability that includes mulching, bagging, or side discharge. We also appreciate that it has a push-button start and a six-position deck height adjustment.
This is a pricey option, however, especially when you consider that the battery and charger are sold separately. The battery runtime is also short, so it isn’t the best option for big yards because it’ll run out of battery power before you finish. It also doesn’t cut well on thick grass.
10. oneinmil RV175 Self Propelled Lawn Mower
The oneinmil Self Propelled Lawn Mower is a new option for walk-behind mowers. It has a powerful 173.9cc gas engine, and the rear-wheel drive is helpful on hills or other troublesome places in your yard. You can choose the exact specifications for cutting heights, since it has eight adjustable settings.
The powerful engine also makes this mower heavy and difficult to maneuver. We found the two-wheel drive to be particularly sluggish. It mows at a slow speed, and the cutting blades are short, so it takes a long time to mow your lawn. This is not the best mower for large yards or those with difficult terrain. It’s not that durable and the grass-collecting bag is too small.
There are many things to consider when shopping for a self-propelled lawn mower, and we’ve included them all in a handy buyer’s guide.
Electric or Gas
Self-propelled mowers are available in gas or electric. For bigger yards, it’s best to go with gas mowers because they have a far greater range and the power to finish the job. Electric mowers are more suitable for smaller yards because you’ll need access to an electrical outlet. They’re also for those who are concerned about noise levels and for those who don’t want to deal with oil changes and buying fuel. Cordless mowers are a third option that run on battery power, but they aren’t a good choice for large yards, as they won’t be able to finish a mowing job on a single charge.
Mower Cutting Width
The bigger the yard you have, the wider the mower you want. Even an extra inch or two every pass can make a big difference in how long it takes you to mow. However, wider mowers weigh more, take up more space, and are harder to store. If you don’t have a great deal of storage space, then a wide mower might not be the best choice for you.
Most self-propelled mowers have several speed options that allow you to adjust the speed as you mow. The fastest any self-propelled mower will go is 3-5 MPH, which makes sense — you don’t want to chase after your mower! Adjustable speeds are important to have if you want to make changes based on the terrain of your yard. For example, when going downhill, it’s best to have it on a slower speed.
Self-Propelled Mower Weight
Even though you won’t be pushing it when you mow, it’s important to consider the weight of the mower. You’ll still need to move it to store it, and if it’s too heavy for you to handle, then it won’t be worth it. Typically, the bigger and more powerful mowers are heavier. So, if you’re looking for a lightweight option, then choose a slimmer mower with more simplistic features.
Recoil or Electric Start
Recoil start is likely the one you’re most familiar with. It involves pulling a rope to start the engine. Electric start mowers allow you to start the engine with the push of a button or turn of a key. If you like the idea of not fighting with a pull-cord to start your mower, then you might like the convenience of an electric start.
Rear-Wheel Drive or Front-Wheel Drive
Front-wheel drive mowers are typically less expensive, as they don’t have the traction and grip of rear-wheel drive. If you have a yard with hills and steep inclines, then rear-wheel drive is a must. This will ensure that your mower keeps the traction it needs to climb steep hills without help from you.
Most yards aren’t without their obstacles: flower beds, trees, mailboxes, etc. If your mower only has straight wheels, it’ll be more challenging to avoid problem areas in your yard. Certain self-propelled mowers, though, have swivel wheels, which enables the mower to steer around obstacles easily.
Most self-propelled mowers have a safety feature that automatically shuts off the engine any time you let go of the handle. So, if you have to stop to remove something in the way of the mower — like a ball, rock, or stick — the mower will stop. This means the engine could stop and start many times while you mow. A blade override system stops the blade from spinning when you let go of the handle but keeps the engine running. This way, you aren’t putting extra stress on the engine.
Wash-out ports are a great extra feature for certain self-propelled mowers. They allow you to simply attach a garden hose to the port and wash away all the grass clippings and debris from the blades. This can keep the blades clean and sharp for much longer.
The Craftsman M275 Self-Propelled Gas Powered Lawn Mower is our best overall choice because of its many features and powerful engine. It has an electric start, wide cutting path, and adjustable cutting heights. It also has a three-in-one capability of grass clipping disposal via side discharge, rear discharge, or mulching.
Our best value choice is the Lawn-Boy 17732 Self-Propelled Lawn Mower because it offers many features for the money. For tricky terrain, it has rear-wheel drive and adjustable cutting heights. We especially liked the worry-free two-year warranty.
We hope our list of reviews and buying guide have helped you choose the best self-propelled mower to meet your needs.
Featured Image Credit By: PowerSmart DB2321S, amazon
- A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- The 10 Best Self-Propelled Lawn Mowers
- 1. Craftsman M275 Self-Propelled Lawn Mower – Best Overall
- 2. Lawn-Boy Self Propelled Lawn Mower – Best Value
- 3. Yard Force Self-Propelled 3-in-1 Mower – Premium Choice
- 4. Snapper Self-Propelled Lawnmower
- 5. Greenworks Brushless Self-Propelled Mower
- 6. Honda Self Propelled Lawn Mower
- 7. Troy-Bilt Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
- 8. PowerSmart DB2321S Lawn Mower
- 9. EGO Power+ LM2102SP Self Propelled Mower
- 10. oneinmil RV175 Self Propelled Lawn Mower
- Buyer’s Guide