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Review of Best 4 Great States Hand Push Reel Lawn Mowers

Updated on June 17, 2017
Ashish Dadgaa profile image

Ashish likes to write product reviews. He has helped millions of customers to make purchase decisions with his high-quality reviews.

American Lawn Mower Company owns and sells reel mowers under the Great States, American Lawn Mower, and Earthwise brands. In addition, we license and sell reel mowers under the Scotts Brand. The power source behind our reel mowers hasn’t changed much in over 120 years. Today’s reel mowers are lightweight and easy to maneuver. They’re ideal for today’s hectic lifestyles. They’re always ready when you are and they’re almost maintenance free. They’re good for the environment and your lawn. A reel mower snips the grass for a clean, precise cut.

Key Features of this Hand Push Reel Lawnmower

  • It gives you precise grass cutting
  • It is lightweight and simple for storage
  • It is easy to maneuver
  • It is made of Alloy Steel
  • It is Eco-friendly as no need of gas or electricity


Great States 204-14 Hand Reel 14 Inch 4 -Blade Push Lawn Mower

Product Information
3 spider 4 blade reel
High impact polymer wheels with 8-1/2-Inch diameter
Bed knife blade with alloy steel reel
Cutting height 1/2-Inch to 1-1/2-Inch with adjustable 3-section roller
Steel side plates and formed torsion tube

I have used two other push mowers in the past from different manufacturers and in that comparison, this push mower is very quiet, environmentally friendly, next to no maintenance. My yard was terribly overgrown from not having been mowed for three weeks and so I anticipated a rough experience from the get go but was pleasantly surprised; this mower cuts grass like butter! I have used it weekly now for several weeks and it's absolutely wonderful. I cannot really compare how well this works on my particular lawn compared to a previous gas or electric mower, but I do love that I don't have to fuss with oil changes or troubleshoot electrical issues.

It's very effective and gives a sharp and uniform cut, even on slightly sloped/bumpy ground and tall grass. As with all push mowers, sometimes a small twig will get caught in the blades and bring you to a complete stop. My yard is riddled with small twig fragments from the giant oaks lining our street but this only slows me down maybe once or twice each time. It took an hour to finish the whole lawn the very first time, and now with weekly maintenance, it takes just 15 minutes. However, before you buy it, please pay attention to that 14-inch description. Get out a tape measure and look at 14 inches. Factor that you always have to overlap about 2-3 inches with each pass so you really only have 11-12 inches per "stripe".

Assembly was relatively easy but I do wish I had read the instructions more carefully before trying to squeak the rubberized grips onto the handle. Instructions advise that you should use a little dish soap and water to help slide them on. I skipped that step and painstakingly forced them on, which did result in a very small tear on one of the grips.

Overall, I'm extremely satisfied with this purchase and I can honestly say that this one is the BEST in terms of being lightweight, easy to manoeuvre and easy to operate. Highly recommend!


Great States 304-14 14-Inch 5-Blade Push Reel Lawnmower

Product Information
5 blade ball bearing reel
14-inch cutting width
Height adjust from 1-inch to 1-3/4-inch
10-inch composite wheels
For a quality, cut heat treated blades stay sharp longer

I spent a lot of time reviewing different push mowers and I am glad that I got this 14" width 5 blade mower! It was easy to assemble and It took me 5 minutes to put the handle together and install on a mower, with no instructions. Mine worked well right out of the box and no adjustment required initially.

I am on a rental property and the yard is pretty small, so I didn't want to invest in a big gas mower. It stores nicely on my porch and I can go out a mow in my flip-flops! It doesn't get all the weeds or the crabgrass, but it's good enough- if you have nice grass it will be perfect, but even in our grass that's mixed with all kinds of weeds, it does a pretty nice job.

It will cut Bermuda grass as long as it's not too dense and blade to cutter bar tension is perfect. It will probably require slight adjustment as the mowing season progresses. If you have really thick dense grass, you should get 16inch or 18inch push reel lawnmower. If you're looking for an easy, quick grass cut for a reasonable price I would recommend!


Great States 415-16 16-Inch Reel Mower Standard Full Feature Lawn Mower With T-Style Handle And Heat Treated Blades

Product Information
10-inch ball bearing wheels
16-inch cutting width, Easy height adjust from 1/2-inch to 2-1/2-inch
Heat treated blades stay sharp longer, making a quality cut
Powder coated finished handle lasts longer and prevents rust
Easily maneuverable, perfect for eco-friendly small lawn owners

I bought this mower to replace a Craftsman mower that I sold on Craigslist, which was around 6.5 HP with something like a 21inch cutting deck. I rarely used the Craftsman mower. This reel mower works great and I wish I had purchased this years ago. I have been a long time user of both gas & electric mowers. When you have to deal with gas & electric mowers is a pain as you have to look after gas, oil, plugs pull cords and dirty air filters. This mower is easier than my gas & electric mowers. My front yard barely has any weeds, my back yard has a lot of dandelions and clover - this mower works well in both my front and back yards. I have about half acre yard of grass and with this 16-inch reel mower, I am able to mow in about 40% less time compared to a corded electric mower. Now I am able to save a lot of time which I can spend with my family.

If I had known how much I would love this mower, I would probably have gotten the 18inch model just to have a little more cutting area. You can get extra 2" cutting width with 18-inch push reel mower but still, I am satisfied with my 16-inch mower. The blade adjustment is pretty easy - I adjusted mine to cut a piece of paper like the instructions say (since this cuts like scissors and doesn't lop the grass off like other mowers. I intentionally took out a blade from adjustment as I wanted to learn how the thing works. It took me about an hour of messing with it to figure out how to get it right, but I'm confident I can do it in about 5 minutes if I had to now. I know there is a lot of hype about other mowers in the market, but this machine is built with proven technology that is easy to use and maintain. I ended up loving the Great States mower so much that I will recommend this to anyone who is having small or medium size lawn.


Great States 815-18 18-Inch 5-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower

Product Information
10-inch ball bearing wheels
18-inch cutting width
Height adjustment from 1/2-inch to 2-3/4-inch
To prevent rust handles are powder coated finished
Heat treated blades stay sharp longer, making a quality cut

I just purchased a new home with a 1/5 acre yard. Most people warned me not to try to use a Push Reel Lawnmower as it would be too exhausting. Some warned that the results would not be good. I didn't want to buy a gasoline powered lawnmower at this time as I had so many expenses to deal with moving. I did need to keep my yard in shape.

It took me about 30 minutes to put the lawnmower together. I didn't read the instructions. No tools were required. By the time I finished the assembly, it was dark outside. I decided to give the lawnmower a try in the dark. I spent about 30 min cutting the front yard. As it was dark, I didn't see how I did until the next day. The next morning, I went out to look at my work. I was surprised. The yard looked excellent. The next evening, I cut the back yard and the results were exceptional. The lawn has a very clean, even cut look which is really hard to describe, but definitely noticeable. I instantly became the neighborhood oddity, but have had several people ask to try the mower. Consider the 18-inch model it is lighter and easier to use than a regular mower.

I would guess that it takes me about 30% more time to use the Great States 18 inch Push Reel Mower than a gasoline powered one. The benefit is that I do get a workout. I don't have to buy and store gasoline in the garage. I can mow at early morning without bothering my neighbors and the results are just as good as using a powered mower. It is much safer for dogs, kids, and shins.

I had used Push Reel mowers when I was a teenager. Those were very heavy with solid wood handles and much heavier hardware. If you are concerned about the quality of the cut, the Great States is much easier to use than the old fashioned ones. I can tell this will not be a tool that never needs maintenance, but an every six months blade sharpening and routine treatment will allow this tool to work for more years. This mower is a serious tool that does real work. Highly recommend!

Product Comparison

204-14 - 14 inch 4-Blade
304-14 - 14 inch 5-Blade
415-16 - 16 inch 5-Blade
815-18 - 18 inch 5-Blade
Number of Blades
4 Blade
5 Blade
5 Blade
5 Blade
Cutting Width
Cutting Height Adjustments
1/2” – 1 3/4”
1-2”- 1/4"
1/2” – 2-1/2”
1/2” – 2-3/4”
Wheel Size
8.5" Composite Wheels
10" Composite Wheels
10" Composite Wheels
10" Composite Wheels
Handle Type
Unbreakable Steel Side Plate
20 pounds
20 pounds
24 pounds
26 pounds
Tool Free Assembly
1 Year
1 Year
1 Year
2 Year

Can I Utilize Reel Mower Grass Catcher With This?

Yes, you can use it. You can use an easy-to-use grass catcher. You simply hook the grass catcher onto the front of your mower, and it will capture your lawn clippings as you mow. It provides a built-in handle, polyester screen so you can see when it's full. It is having a durable base for stability and heavy-duty steel frame. You can assemble it quickly and easily. It works great, easy to put together, no problems with the bag falling off while mowing the rough lawn. If you will clip tightly it will stay in place and will not fall down.

What Are The Limitations Of This Mower?

Mow over sticks, twigs, pine cones, mulch, and rocks. Not even almost with a running start, it might conquer a twig 1/8" inch thick, or it will lock up and stop moving.

Do The Push Reel Mowers Cut All Types Of Grass Well?

Yes, push reel mowers cut all types of grass well. However, when purchasing a reel mower its good to know that depending on how many blades you have will determine how thick grass you can cut but it should range from around 4 - 7 blades.

How Should I Keep Reel Blades Sharpe And In Good Condition?

You can sharpen reel mower with sharpening kit as it is an easy way to keep reel blades in top cutting form. This is a DIY kit which allows you to sharpen your mowers at home. The directions are clearly described and straightforward, which is given in the manual. You just have to turn the mower upside down, use the brush to "paint" the compound (a thick goop) along the end of each blade, pop off a wheel, slip on the crank, and turn it for a couple of minutes. Finally, clean off the compound and re-assemble the mower. You should be able to complete this chore in 20-25 minutes.

How Does This Push Reel Lawnmower Do On Wet Grass?

It works fine. I live in a very wet climate and sometimes need to mow after a rainstorm. This works much better than a gas motor on wet grass. It works even better on dry grass, though.

How Durable Is The Handle?

It seems fine so far. I have only had it for a little over a month. After the first few uses, I re-checked all the wing nuts (small spanner included) and they were all tight. It seems very sturdy hand push lawnmower.

Pros and Cons of Great States Hand Push Reel Lawn Mowers

Easier to mow the lawn
Taller grass may require several passes to cut evenly
Quiet than a gas mower
Tiny twigs get stuck in the mower
Cut grass falls gently back onto lawn
Low maintenance
No gas required
Require less space for storage
No oil changes
Provide you enough workout

The Verdict

Overall, these all are an excellent mower at this price. I would not want to use this as the only mower for an acre. It would take forever. I was able to do my patch of grass in about 20 minutes every weekend. I would recommend this to anyone who has a smaller lawn who doesn't need to get a gas powered mower. As per my research and market survey, 30.88% people prefer 14 inches 4-Blade, 6.61% people like to buy 14 inches 5-Blade, 47.80% garden lover would love to buy 16 inches 5-Blade and 14.71% love to go with 18 inches 5-Blade.

© 2017 Ashi


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