Free Republic
Browse · Search
Bloggers & Personal
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Need a Lawn Mower Recommendation (Vanity)
StonyMan451 | 7/19/2011 | StonyMan451

Posted on 07/19/2011 3:00:36 PM PDT by StonyMan451

I've just been informed that my second Toro gas powered push lawn mower isn't worth fixing. I know very little about engines and such, so I'm taking the mechanic's word for it. The engine has thrown a rod (I can hear it) and the transmission's shot (that's why I took it to be repaired).

Now I have to plead a little a lot guilty. I did not take proper care of the thing. I should have changed the oil, etc., etc.

However, before I invest in another lawn mower (which I PROMISE I will take good care of) I thought I'd ask my fellow Freepers for some advice.

Here's my situation... Our lot is 0.7 acres, and bumpy. We're in the mid-atlantic region, so we need to cut the lawn from early April through the end of October. I am not interested in collecting the grass clippings when I use it, so I would want them to mulch back into the lawn. I would like, but do not strictly need an electric start. I do need self-propulsion. Parts of my lawn get very thick and I need the extra power of a larger engine.

So here are my questions:

1. What brand/model do you recommend? (I can spend about $400, give or take)

2. Do you believe an extended warranty is worth the extra cost?

3. If I take good care of it, how long do you think it should last?

4. Besides changing the oil, what should I do to make it last?

5. Are there any other considerations I should take into account?

Thanks.


TOPICS: Agriculture; Gardening; Hobbies; Outdoors
KEYWORDS: lawn; mower; recommendation
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-100101-113 next last

1 posted on 07/19/2011 3:00:38 PM PDT by StonyMan451
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
Seeking advice on any number of subjects is yet another answer to the question

What is the value of Free Republic?

Click the link for more answers.

2 posted on 07/19/2011 3:03:31 PM PDT by don-o (Abolish FReepathons. Be a monthly donor.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

make sure you see a social security card and driver’s license.


3 posted on 07/19/2011 3:03:44 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand ("America will cease to be great when America ceases to be good." -- Welcome to deToqueville.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Snapper. Bought mine in ’87!and it’s still going strong.


4 posted on 07/19/2011 3:04:08 PM PDT by Leroy S. Mort
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
I'm still running my Lawn Boy that I bought new in 1984. : )

Runs like a top yet however my John Deere is doing most of the work of late because the ol' body of mine can't handle a whole lawn with a pusher any more.

5 posted on 07/19/2011 3:04:42 PM PDT by EGPWS (Trust in God, question everyone else)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
Ya can sidestep all these issues by buying it with Obama’s stash money, then whadda you care?
6 posted on 07/19/2011 3:05:19 PM PDT by Navy Patriot (Holy flippin' crap, Sarah rocks the world!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

I’ve had a Honda for over 10 years now and had the oil changed twice now and it still starts on the second pull. I’ve had issues with the pully in the transmission but I can fix a bunch of stuff. It is on its last legs but runs fine ever since I took apart the carburator and cleaned out the high fructose corn syrup...


7 posted on 07/19/2011 3:05:41 PM PDT by BreezyDog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Don’t you have a nearby 12-15 year old who needs money and has access to his Dad’s mower?

Or does that America no longer exist?


8 posted on 07/19/2011 3:06:46 PM PDT by freedumb2003 (Herman Cain 2012)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
Craftsman, Home Depot or Lowes house brands...MTD I think. Built like a tank. Gas ‘em up...keep the oil clean and a new spark plug every couple years and they'll last a decade or me. Biggest concern is rust...keep ‘em dry in the winter and out of the snow.
9 posted on 07/19/2011 3:07:42 PM PDT by JrsyJack (a healthy dose of buckshot will probably get you the last word in any argument.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

I bought a Lawnboy self-propelled a couple of years ago and I’ve been very happy with it. I like the way it can automatically speed up or slow down depending upon how hard you push the bar. I wanted to have the choice of bagging or mulching so I got the Lawnboy.

If I were going to be strictly mulching, I probably would have gotten a Snapper mower. When the grass gets long, the Lawnboy doesn’t do the greatest job when mulching, but other than that it’s all good. From what I understand, they use a different blade on mowers that are self-mulching only. My BIL has a Snapper and he really likes it. They are made to last.


10 posted on 07/19/2011 3:08:40 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open ( <o> ---)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Honda Honda or something with a Honda motor


11 posted on 07/19/2011 3:09:53 PM PDT by Wooly
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Honda Honda or something with a Honda motor


12 posted on 07/19/2011 3:10:09 PM PDT by Wooly
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
I reccomend this model, I understand it's about $400.00 per hour.
Must be nice to have that kind of budget


13 posted on 07/19/2011 3:10:18 PM PDT by Waverunner (I'd like to welcome our new overlords, say hello to my little friend)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

real happy with our new Honda.

should last you 10-15 if you avoid ethanol gas and change the oil yearly.

get a 2nd blade and swap blades every few months so you always have a sharp one on.


14 posted on 07/19/2011 3:10:20 PM PDT by WOBBLY BOB ( "I don't want the majority if we don't stand for something"- Jim Demint)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: freedumb2003

“Don’t you have a nearby 12-15 year old who needs money and has access to his Dad’s mower?

Or does that America no longer exist?”

***

Not in my neck of the woods. I have a guy who does mine for $75. You can’t find kids to do mowing (or snow shoveling in winter) — it requires too much effort.


15 posted on 07/19/2011 3:10:39 PM PDT by fatnotlazy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Toro makes a good lawn mower. With proper care they will last a long time. Not changing oil with ruin any small engine. I would suggest to give up and hire a neighbor kid to mow the lawn. Their parents will make sure their oil is changed as needed. That is one of the ways I made money as a kid.


16 posted on 07/19/2011 3:11:45 PM PDT by ThomasThomas (I am still looking)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

PLEASE DONATE


17 posted on 07/19/2011 3:12:24 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BreezyDog

dittos on the Honda. I mowed 3 acres regularly with it when I lived in TX. bent the motor shaft on rocks but that was my doing. that machine had the heart of a champion.


18 posted on 07/19/2011 3:13:19 PM PDT by RitchieAprile
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
Start with any mower that uses a Briggs & Stratton engine.

In my opinion they are the very best small engine builder in the U.S. Everything else is just a feature.

Cautionary note. When you are done for the season, run the engine dry of gas. With the ethanol crap they are using even a fuel stabilizer won't stop varnish from clogging the carburator.I have a Craftsman riding mower which I like but had to have a new carb just for that reason.

19 posted on 07/19/2011 3:13:52 PM PDT by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Any of the major brand with Honda, Briggs and Stratton or Tecumseh engines with proper CARE will last a generation or at least until the cutting deck rusts away and that ain’t gonna happen if it is cleaned after use. Toro makes very good products. I cannot believe you have destroyed two of them. Maybe your best bet would be to call a lawn service.


20 posted on 07/19/2011 3:13:52 PM PDT by Tupelo ( 2012 TEA PARTY or no party)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
Remote control with treads. I know these are expensive, but they have conventional ones. The one with treads...there's something about it. Unfortunately the treaded one doesn't look like it's for mowing close to the ground. Then you have remote control lawnomowers from these guys that appear like they could roll over small animals without slowing down. Unfortunately they haven't paired up with a manufacturer yet.
21 posted on 07/19/2011 3:14:24 PM PDT by af_vet_rr
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

You are not gonna get much for $400. Lawnmowers today are not much more than throwaways after about 4 years, if that.Spend about $4K on a small tractor, not a lawn mower, I mean tractor with mower attachment, it should last ya a good 20 years or so.


22 posted on 07/19/2011 3:15:19 PM PDT by eastforker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

I have had a battery-powered, rechargeable electric mower from Black & Decker for 15 years. I had to replace the battery at around 12 years. Other than sharpening the blade, it is trouble-free, odor-free, and very easy to operate. No need for oil or gas. You just have to remember to plug in the charger the day before you want to mow. The mown grass blows back onto the lawn as mulch.

Here is one you may want, for your size lot:

http://www.blackanddecker.com/outdoor/MM275.aspx

This is the newer model of the one I have:

http://www.blackanddecker.com/outdoor/CM1836.aspx


23 posted on 07/19/2011 3:15:28 PM PDT by Albion Wilde (To ACLU & its plaintiffs: Stop dragging the public into your personal struggle w/ God. -Mark Baisley)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

1. What brand/model do you recommend? (I can spend about $400, give or take)

Get one with a Honda engine. They make the best small engines.

2. Do you believe an extended warranty is worth the extra cost?

Absolutely not. Think of the extended warranty as a bet. You are betting that the mower WILL break and the warranty seller is betting that it won’t. The warranty company KNOWS that statistically your mower won’t break. I bet with them.

3. If I take good care of it, how long do you think it should last?

Change the oil once a year and there is no reason that it won’t last 8-10 years.

4. Besides changing the oil, what should I do to make it last?

Air filter. Put some Sta-Bil in the tank in the winter to keep the fuel from gumming up in the carb, run it a few minutes and then shut it down. Also, try to get gasoline WITHOUT ethanol in it because ethanol will dissolve some of the gaskets.

5. Are there any other considerations I should take into account?

That’s a pretty big yard. I would think about a smaller riding mower.


24 posted on 07/19/2011 3:18:31 PM PDT by Blood of Tyrants (Islam is the religion of Satan and Mohammed was his minion.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Goats don’t cost much.


25 posted on 07/19/2011 3:21:22 PM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, A Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: freedumb2003

Neighbor has a 16 yr old that gets to drive the family Mercedes wagon (wrecklessly), but doesn’t lift a finger around the house....Dad mows the lawn.....
I could go on, but suffice it to say, the kid will be in jail within the year, if he’s lucky.


26 posted on 07/19/2011 3:26:23 PM PDT by G Larry (I dream of a day when a man is judged by the content of his character)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

26 posts and no pictures of “My Pet Goat”?


27 posted on 07/19/2011 3:28:21 PM PDT by G Larry (I dream of a day when a man is judged by the content of his character)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JrsyJack

***** “Craftsman, Home Depot or Lowes house brands...MTD I think. Built like a tank. Gas ‘em up...keep the oil clean and a new spark plug every couple years and they’ll last a decade or me. Biggest concern is rust...keep ‘em dry in the winter and out of the snow.” *****

Where do you get your Ethanol Free Gas from? ... even Stabil won’t keep the Ethanol from eating the gaskets in the Carb ... I’m so sick of rebuilding carbs ... I’m ready to start buying junkers at yard sales ... if they run .. use em till they crap out and but another... shame cause my Craftsman is a good mower
TT


28 posted on 07/19/2011 3:29:54 PM PDT by TexasTransplant (Radical islam is real islam. Moderate islam is the trojan horse.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: don-o
I haven't bought a lawn mower in a very long time, but back in my early teens, THE mower to have was a Lawn Boy 2 cycle. It was incredibly powerful, and it would easily cut knee high grass, if it wasn't too wet. I bought one when I was 13 and used it to mow lawns for people in the neighborhood for $$ until I was about 17, when I moved to New York to finish high school. At that time (1979) I gave the mower to my cousin. He used that mower on his home lawn until it finally gave up the ghost in 2006

Mark

29 posted on 07/19/2011 3:30:12 PM PDT by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

The other thing besides change the oil a couple times a year, is DRAIN the old gasoline out at the end of the season. Then run it till it chokes out. I used the gas in my car so it didn’t go stale.


30 posted on 07/19/2011 3:31:00 PM PDT by omega4179
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Buy a goat. Or two. Male and female. Goats eat the grass and you make goat cheese while they make baby goats.;^)


31 posted on 07/19/2011 3:31:42 PM PDT by saganite (What happens to taglines? Is there a termination date?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Waverunner
My wife told me, in no uncertain terms, I can't buy one of those.
32 posted on 07/19/2011 3:33:12 PM PDT by The Cajun (Palin, Free Republic, Mark Levin, Rush, Hannity......Nuff said.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
Real men use a scythe!


33 posted on 07/19/2011 3:33:24 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Let us prey!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tupelo

Tecumseh stopped making engines a couple of years ago. You can’t get them anymore.


34 posted on 07/19/2011 3:33:34 PM PDT by Revel
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Yard Machines, half the price, Briggs and Stratton engine. Last one lasted 10 years without decent maintenance.


35 posted on 07/19/2011 3:34:20 PM PDT by Chaguito
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JrsyJack; StonyMan451

Nothing from Sears.


36 posted on 07/19/2011 3:34:25 PM PDT by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Having worked in Sears lawn and garden at one time. I have some knowledge

1. What brand/model do you recommend? (I can spend about $400, give or take)——You can hardly go wrong with a Craftsman, but any national brand is good. Get a front propelled movers as the rear wheels tend to tear up the yard. Definitely get at least a 6 horsepower engine anything smaller will burn up too soon if you have a heavy cut and will not cut your grass right. I would suggest you get a rear bagger as you might want to pick up leaves or the yard may be too thick from mulching and need to bag once in a while http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_07137066000P?mv=rr

2. Do you believe an extended warranty is worth the extra cost? -— Since you already claim no mechanical prowess. By all means get it

3. If I take good care of it, how long do you think it should last? -—5 to 10 years at least

4. Besides changing the oil, what should I do to make it last? — change the mulching blade every year. Do not get it sharpened. Very hard to balance it so not to wrap your engine

5. Are there any other considerations I should take into account? — Put good gas in the tank with “fresh start” left over gas can leave a varnish on the lines and clog it up

Beer-—don’t drink horse piss Budweiser while cutting your yard with your new mover


37 posted on 07/19/2011 3:34:59 PM PDT by Popman (Obama. First Marxist to turn a five year Marxist plan into a 4 year administration.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Some good advice on the thread. I know Lawnboys and Hondas are great mowers. So are Toros. But, make sure you check Craigslist in your area. I picked up a fairly newer (4 or so years old) Toro self propelled for $55 from a getting-divorced-so-he-had-to-get-an-apartment poor fellow. It was probably $320 new.

There are steals on there if you monitor it and snag the best deals as they post.


38 posted on 07/19/2011 3:35:25 PM PDT by GreenAccord (Bacon Akbar)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Buy the sheapest thing you can get, run it for two years with zero maintenance, sell it on craig’s list, and repeat.


39 posted on 07/19/2011 3:37:26 PM PDT by patton (I am sure that I have done dumber things in my life, but at the moment, I am unable to recall them.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Had a good Toro that lasted for about 10 years with really bad maintenance. Still runs but on it’s last legs. I inherited a similar model from my Dad that would have lasted another 5-8 years. Had to pull the carb and wash out the gunk due to being unused fr a couple years. It started after only a couple pulls.

Then, my nephew from Thailand was mowing the lawn and he decided to run it up over a landscape timber to see if he could cut off the 3/8” steel spike holding it down. He said he didn’t hit anything, but the spike was bent 90 degrees and it bent the blade and the crankshaft. This was the first time we used it after the cleaning! DAMN.

Went to Walmart and bought a green $165. push mower with the big yellow wheels, almost identical to the one pictured. (Poulan/weedeater?) Except ours didn’t come with that nicely padded, self-propelled option on the back of the handle.


40 posted on 07/19/2011 3:38:51 PM PDT by USMCPOP (Father of LCpl. Karl Linn, KIA 1/26/2005 Al Haqlaniyah, Iraq)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Change or clean the air filter, change the oil, run out all the gas or crank it up several times over the off-season. Bad gas can foul up the carburetor.


41 posted on 07/19/2011 3:39:22 PM PDT by bamagirl1944 (That's short for Alabama, not Obama)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Don’t they make Snappers anymore? Last time I bought a LM there was no equal. Worked great till I gave it away. If it costs too much, get a used one.

LM’s are like vacuum cleaners, you can save the money but you will have to buy 4 of them in a few years anyway. I stopped that when I bought a Dyson VC, and a Snapper LM.


42 posted on 07/19/2011 3:40:17 PM PDT by Williams (Honey Badger Don't Care)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Leroy S. Mort

"You said, 'Snapper.'"

43 posted on 07/19/2011 3:42:03 PM PDT by dfwgator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: freedumb2003

“Don’t you have a nearby 12-15 year old who needs money and has access to his Dad’s mower?

Or does that America no longer exist?”

You don’t live in SoCal, do you?


44 posted on 07/19/2011 3:43:40 PM PDT by Yaelle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Waverunner

It looks like a well oiled top heavy machine. See that bumpy patch over there? Why don’t you mow it about three or four more times.


45 posted on 07/19/2011 3:43:45 PM PDT by listenhillary (Social Justice is the epitome of injustice.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Jimmy Valentine
I like the Briggs Vanguard engines. They're pressure (not splash) lubed, and seem to last.

If you empty the the fuel tank for the winter, put some a bag of some kind of dessicant in the fuel tank, or it will collect water over the winter.

46 posted on 07/19/2011 3:44:24 PM PDT by tacticalogic
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Popman
You can hardly go wrong with a Craftsman...

Just BS unless they are hand tools. Used to be a good bet, but their weed eaters, lawn mowers are crap. The motor on the lawn mower is good (Briggs) but the wheels and self drive need parts in two years. Electric start lasted one year. The weed eaters go in the trash the second season, small engine guys laugh about fixing them. And I DO the maintenance.

47 posted on 07/19/2011 3:45:01 PM PDT by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: Popman
You can hardly go wrong with a Craftsman...

Just BS unless they are hand tools. Used to be a good bet, but their weed eaters, lawn mowers are crap. The motor on the lawn mower is good (Briggs) but the wheels and self drive need parts in two years. Electric start lasted one year. The weed eaters go in the trash the second season, small engine guys laugh about fixing them. And I DO the maintenance.

48 posted on 07/19/2011 3:45:12 PM PDT by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451
My *new* Snapper is 21 years old, my back-up (when the wife helps me cut) is 33 years old. These are rear engine riders, but the Snapper brand seems to hold together well.
Several friends have Snapper walk behind mowers and are well satisfied.

Snapper now owned by Briggs and Stratton by the way.

49 posted on 07/19/2011 3:45:49 PM PDT by The Cajun (Palin, Free Republic, Mark Levin, Rush, Hannity......Nuff said.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: StonyMan451

Get a used riding lawn mower on craigslist or ebay and attach a lawn roller

it will be less bumpy and more pleasant to mow all around

you could get all that for less than $1K if you look hard but it will las far longer than a push mower for that size lot


50 posted on 07/19/2011 3:46:29 PM PDT by Mr. K (CAPSLOCK! -Unleash the fury! [Palin/Bachman 2012- unbeatable ticket])
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-100101-113 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Bloggers & Personal
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson