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Best Push Reel Lawn Mowers 2015

Updated on March 16, 2015

Push or Reel Lawn Mower refers to a manual lawn mover that depends on the power of the user to trim the grass. At first, one may take push lawn mowers as some relic of the pre-industrial age but they are making a comeback nowadays as more and more people discover the numerous benefits of these idyllic machines. Low price range, exercise, quiet operation, energy conservation and simplicity are some of the great reasons for preferring a push lawn mower over an electric or a gas one. Whatever is your reason for looking for the best reel lawn mower, this article aims to help you in finding the product you need. Here, I have listed the best selling push lawn mowers on the market with reviews on pros and cons of each mower. Once you have read through this page, you will have all the information you need to choose the right push lawn mower for yourself.

What Features Should You Look for in a Push Reel Lawn Mower

Well, the best push lawn mower is basically the one that best cuts the grass and the most reliable way to know whether it does that is to read reviews by actual customers. That being said, there are a number of other features that will tell that you are looking at a decent lawn mower.

Weight: At first, one can think it is best to get the lightest lawn mower because it will require less effort to push around. The truth is a heavier lawn mower is advantageous when it comes to thick grass or weeds. St. Augustine, Zoysia and Bermuda are some examples of thick grass types that are hard to cut with a manual lawn mower. When so many of these strong grass stems come together they can sort of lift the lawn mower from the ground and you will have a hard time getting the blades to cut them. A heavy mower like the Fiskars StaySharp will do better imposing the blades down on the tough grass types as well as weeds.

Number of Blades: Most reel mowers have either 5 or 7 blades and the more blades it has, the more effective it is on thick grass because it will hit the grass stems more often. However, number of blades does not alone make a lawn mower the best. As we'll see below, Fiskars Lawn Mower slashes its way through all kinds of grass even though it has five blades and that's because of its innovative design.

Durability: A manual lawn mower is exposed to a lot of physical strain when being used. Unless it has a robust construction it will break sooner or later.

GreenWorks 5-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower with Grass Catcher

GreenWorks is part of the Changzhou Globe Tools corporation located in Changzhou, China. They make some decent outdoor tools such as mowers, trimmers and saws at a reasonable price but this mower is not the best of this Chinese supplier.

GreenWorks 5-Blade Reel Mower enjoys decent sales but not quite enough to make this brand the top push lawn mower supplier. The mower is not really of the highest quality so I have to assume the reason for the popularity is the cheap price and the little bribe that is the free grass catcher.

Greenworks Lawnmowers are lighweight, they range between 26 lbs to 32 lbs depending on the size. Available size options are 16'', 18'' and 20''. Cutting height can be adjusted from 1.125'' to 2.25'' for the 16'' deck model and between 1.75'' to 2.75'' for the larger models. This is not quite the widest range of height options but is still OK.

The problem with the GreenWorks push lawn mowers is that they apparently have serious durability issues. First, the wheels reportedly get disaligned very often and even fall off. Another very wobbly part is the handle that snaps or leans. In general, customers complain that these mowers are cheaply made and some part either falls apart or bends when pushed hard. Needless to say, a lawn mower is no toy and must have been made to endure such force.

There are numerious reports about these mowers getting jammed very easily when they encounter stuff like tree barks. The blades are also said to get dull quickly. The alarming thing is that several people who bought GreenWorks to replace an old reel mower say their decades old, decrepit push lawn mowers work better and they are going back to them.

The bottom line is that this is a brand that is chosen by people who want to get a lawn mower for the least possible cost. However, with the quality issues listed above, even the current low price seems to be more than these lawn mowers are worth. I suggest you to check the better products below before you make your final decision.

The Scotts 2000-20 Classic Push Reel Lawnmower

Scotts 2000-20 Classic Push Reel Lawnmower comes with five blades that can be adjusted to cut at nine different heights ranging between 1'' and 3''. This one is also produced in China but the manufaturer is American Lawn Mower Company. Scotts lawn mower is not as bad as the above one. In fact, it has quite a large reel size for the money. The reel is 20'' and that seems to be why many people go for this one.

Having a wider cutting range is of course useful because it will take less time to finish the lawn but there are some recurrent complaints with this mower that should make you think twice before purchasing from this brand. The most commonly experienced problem is with the handle. Then and again this mower jams on thick grass and you have to exert a lot of force to get it moving. That's how several customers broke this mower's handle. This is bad news about the quality of the product and that's not all. Some plastic parts have been used in the gear that gets the blades to spin and not surprisingly, it sometimes breaks rendering the reel motionless. Obviously, Scotts 2000-20 Lawn Mower is not built as strongly as a reel mower needs to be.

Scotts is not bad at mowing especially if you do not use it on thick grass. But in the light of the issues listed, I have my reservations about recommending it. Luckily, there is a higher quality alternative from the same company. The 16'' lawn mower seen below is rated much better concerning function and durability and has a similar price.

1705-16 16 inch Push Reel Lawn Mower by Great States

This is a cute, little mower with a decent price and high quality. Weighing no more than 27 pounds, the 1705-16 model is manufatured by American Lawn Mower Company, which is also known as the Great States Company.

One of the things that makes this model better than the push lawn mowers we've seen above is the greater number of blades. This 16'' lawn mower has seven blades that allow it to perform better on thick grass. Not surprisingly, people who own this mower verify it does well with a variety of grass including Bermuda. The cutting height can be adjusted from 0.5 to 2.25 inches. That is the shortest cutting option available in any push lawn mower and is an advantage if you want to keep your grass very short. On the other hand, I think the highest setting is not high enough but I have not come across any negative comments on that so I have to assume most everyone is happy with the height range.

Customer reviews indicate that Great States 16'' lawn mower has a strong build. There are are almost no reports of any part of the mower bending or breaking.

Similar 14 inch and 18 inch models are also available from the same company but they are not as popular. 16 inch seems to be the ideal size for most grass cutting tasks, not to mention that the 16 inch mower is made in USA while other sizes come from China.

On the whole, 1705-16 model is the optimum choice if you have an average lawn with typical variety of grass and few geographical features. Concerning cutting ability it is very good, although it is not a beast like the Fiskars StaySharp. It is also sturdier than its peers at the same price range. I can confidently recommend this lawn mower as a great buy.

One last word: 1705-16 model is apparently sold under two different names on Amazon. The two lawn mowers you see here are the same item. If you want this one, make sure you get the best deal.

Fiskars StaySharp™ Max Reel Mower

This is currently the best selling reel lawn mower and is rightly so. Manufactured in the USA, Fiskars StaySharp™ Max Reel Mower comes with a three-year warranty. The height can be adjusted from 1 to 4 inches and the reel width is 18 inches. The product weighs 52 lbs but the special design makes it easier to move than most other push lawn mowers. Fiskars Reel Mower is the pinnacle of manual lawn mower design. A combination of innovative technologies has made this push lawn mower easy to use, long-lasting and highly effective on all types of grass. Let us review these technologies now.

InertiaDrive™ is the most important feature in this mower that makes it stand out but I feel Fiskars company has not done enough to inform people about this, so I will try to explain what InertiaDrive is. Fiskars StaySharp uses a chain drive instead of a gear drive to transmit the torque to the turning blades. Think about how the bike keeps moving after you stop cycling, thanks to the chain drive. Just like that, the blades of this mower will keep turning fast even if you slow down. Add to this the substantial weight of the wheels and the blades and imagine the torque that will be generated. The stubborn grass and weeds are going to get crushed by freely moving and massive steel blades. This is InertiaDrive technology made simple.

Another distinguishing feature is the Inset Wheel Design. The blade compartment is located in front of the wheels rather than between them so it will be easier to do the sides of the lawn. The same feature will prevent the grass from getting trampled by wheels before they can be cut down by the reel blades. You will not end up lines of squeezed grass that refuse to be cut.

Finally, StaySharp™ technology means that the lawn mower is designed such that the moving blades come close enough to the stationary blade to slice the grass but they do not really touch each other. That means there is no metal to metal contact, no wearing of the blades and no friction. That is why it is so easy to push this thing around even though it weighs 50 lbs. Also, you will have to sharpen the blades less often if at all.

I have not come across a significant number of relevant complaints such as the mower breaking after a while or getting jammed. People are delighted at how Fiskars cuts through all kinds of grass. This mower is solid and does the job. In fact, those few who are not satisfied with Fiskars manual lawn mower are usually people who unfairly compare it with power lawn mowers and complain that they have to push it. They should have bought a gas lawn mower if they don't want exercise.

As of 2015, Fiskars StaySharp™ Max Reel Mower is the best push lawn mower in the market. It boasts very high sales, gets excellent ratings and offers great features. Unless your budget is limited, this is the item you are advised to get.

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      slh 3 years ago

      Thanks!