If you are considering buying a zero-turn mower then you will already know that it can be a very difficult decision. The main reason for this being difficult is because some zero turn mowers can cost the same as a small car. This means that for most people it is not a light buying decision!
This post will help you and give you some of the key considerations to think about before you buy. We will also give you a look at some of the best choices that we have reviewed here on the site which means that you will be able to go through and get more information on each one.
We will also let you know about the type of mower that you are best going for depending on the size of the lawn that you are going to be maintaining.
There are also other considerations such as commercial choices and more powerful zero turn mowers.
Read on and we will cover the key considerations if you are just shopping for a zero-turn mower to maintain a medium to large garden at home. We will also recommend some very good zero turn mower models for you.
Table of Contents
Key Considerations When Shopping For A Zero Turn Mower To Use At Home:
If you are thinking of buying a zero-turn mower to be able to maintain a medium to large garden residentially then the good news is that you should be able to find lots of choices that are reasonable on price.
Maybe you are searching for a good zero turn mower as you do not want to keep on paying a lot of money for garden maintenance and the cost will work out cheaper over time. Or maybe you are just looking for a zero-turn mower, so you are able to maintain the garden yourself quickly.
The first consideration is:
The power of the zero-turn mower is the first place to look, and you will normally find that this is measured in horsepower and also torque. To make it a little bit easier you will find that there are generally two different types of zero turn mower – commercial and residential.
If you are shopping for a commercial zero turn mower then you will normally find that the power is far greater, and it tends to have a wider stance to be able to power through any job quicker for longer periods of time.
As a rule, a residential zero turn mower will still give you decent power and capabilities but will tend to be a “lite” version of the more powerful commercial type.
You will also find that the price reflects this which is really good if you are just looking for a commercial zero turn mower.
Another piece of good news is the fact that even if you have a very large home garden you will probably not need to invest in a commercial mower. The main benefit of a commercial zero turn mower is that you will be able to use for very long periods of time and cover vast distances, this is normally not required for a residential property.
In regard to general power, you will find that most zero turn mower models that you can use at home comfortably will give you between 15HP to 30HP.
This is more than enough horsepower for most gardens. The only time that this will change is if the grass is very long, or the ground is very uneven.
There are other considerations to take into account apart from power, so carry on reading to find your perfect zero turn mower.
The next consideration to make sure that you get a zero-turn mower be adequate for your needs at home is to consider the size. This does not mean necessarily the size of the zero-turn mower itself, as long as you have the storage space you can have a larger vehicle.
The size that you will want to be mindful of is the “deck size” that you get with this zero-turn mower. In essence, this is referring to the cutting width that you get with the zero-turn mower.
Of course, you will also want to measure up if you have a back garden or front garden that you have to access through a gate, make sure that you go for a zero-turn mower that will be able to get around your property with no problems.
In regard to the pros and cons of sizing with zero turn mowers, you will find that the wider the “deck size” the quicker it is to be able to cut a larger lawn. The downside with a wider deck will be manoeuvring through gates and narrower areas.
Conversely, if you go for a narrower deck size this will work for smaller lawns and it will be far more manoeuvrable but of course take longer if you are on a larger lawn and have a huge surface area to cover.
The good news is that most zero turn mowers that are aimed for households and residential properties are fairly standard in terms of sizing. In fact, you will find that most of our reviews for zero turn mowers range from 42 inches wide for is cutting deck to 61 inches. By having a look at the other features that you get and also the design of the zero-turn mower itself you will be able to pick the right size for you.
The next consideration is:
When you are comparing and choosing a zero-turn mower and you have decided on the size and the power then other areas to have a look at are the main features that you get.
Although you may have decided on the power of the zero-turn mower that you wish to buy make sure that you also do some research on the reliability of the engine. This is made very easy by going straight through to Amazon.com for any zero-turn mower that you want to buy. You will be able to see reviews from people that have already purchased the model and exactly what they are saying.
You are after a powerful, reliable engine that does not require much upkeep. This would be perfect for a home zero turn mower and means that you don’t have to worry too much about maintenance.
This is not essential but having reviewed quite a few different zero turn mowers one of the things that we recommend looking for in terms of features is a deck wash. This will work by spraying the deck and it will help to clean the mower after usage. Of course, you will still need to clean up, but it does go some way to help build up of grass and mulch on the underside of your mower. This feature is not essential, but it is definitely worth looking at if you are looking for a great zero turn mower to use at home.
Mow In Reverse:
This is another feature to keep an eye out for. Essentially, this just gives you the versatility and although it is not strictly necessary with a zero-turn mower as you can turn on the spot to go in any direction you, please it will give you something easier to use.
This feature will also help you if you are trying to manoeuvre store your zero-turn mower, you will be able to reverse the mower into a smaller space or storage.
When you are using your mower, you will find it surprising how many times you will be pleased that you have a reverse function.
The good news with this feature is that most zero turn mowers will have a reversing function as well.
360° Turning Feature:
This seems very strange adding this is one of the features that you will want to look for with a zero-turn mower, after all this is essentially what a zero-turn mower is! However, you will see many mowers market themselves as “zero turn” and then will give you a smaller turning radius which still requires steering the mower around.
Make sure if you want a real zero turn mower that it mentions the 360° turning feature. The way this works is you will stay on the spot, and you will be able to move in any direction.
This is commonly overlooked. Make sure you do some research on the seating and make sure that it is heavily padded and comfortable. If you can, we recommend trying one out, if you are buying online, we recommend looking through the reviews and making sure that they mention it is comfortable enough. There will be nothing worse than having all of the features that you need with your zero-turn mower and then finding that it is very uncomfortable.
This is another feature that although is not necessary for you to have a great zero turn mower it can definitely help and will be well used if you want to keep your garden growing. This will be down to personal preference but if you are looking for a mulching feature then make sure you doublecheck this, you will find quite a few zero turn mowers that give you this feature.
It is also worth checking that any zero-turn mower you choose has some safety features, you will find many of the safety features will be built into the transmission to stop the zero-turn mower from working unless everything is locked into place.
Another safety feature well worth looking for is called “ROPS”, this stands for rollover protection structure, this works in very much the same way that antiroll bars work in a car. They are normally cabs, frames or bars that will protect the zero-turn mower user in the event of a rollover.
Of course, the best thing that you can do in terms of safety is to make sure that you know how to operate your zero-turn mower. You will find that most modern mowers that you buy will come with video instructions that you will be able to check out to make sure you can see how to operate it.
As long as you start slowly and try some basic manoeuvres first you will find that most residential zero turn mowers are very safe and easy to use.
You will also find other safety features that can give you peace of mind are the ability to lock the seat in place. The ability to use the gear system with a solid input – so it will not move at all when you have the mower with the brake on.
The final thing we would say to make sure you research with your mower is the warranty you get. The good news with this is that in most cases you will get a great warranty with some of the well-known brands. We will explore some of the best choices below that will give you the best warranty.
The main distinction when looking for a warranty that is included is:
This is where you will be covered for any damages, but it may not cover you for repairs and they can also stipulate what you are covered for. An example of this would be a warranty that says – Limited warranty for parts = 6 months and engine function = 1 month.
This does not mean that it is a red flag, but it does mean to pay attention to exactly what is covered and how long for.
Recommendations on the Warranty:
We recommend, as we will be exploring some of the best choices below, when you get through to Amazon and make your choice – you will be able to see the warranty options direct from Amazon on most products. This can be great as you will have the manufacturer’s warranty and you can also get more peace of mind by getting an additional warranty from Amazon.
NOTE: You will need to check each product as this is not the case for all of them.
If you make sure you go through the list above, which is:
Power – How powerful the engine is for your zero-turn mower. As explained above, make sure you buy for the task and do not get too powerful if it is not needed.
Size – Have a good look at the size of the mower you are going for. Not just the size of the vehicle but the cutting width as well. This will normally directly correlate with the power. Again, when you are going for a residential option do not go for anything too large.
Features – Have a look through the checklist above – this will give you the main features you should find on most zero turn mowers. Of course, plan out the features you are looking for and they will normally be directly in line with the type of job you are using the mower for. For a small residential mower, you should be good to go with the feature list above.
For a job that is larger and more commercial you might want to look for a more powerful engine and a wider model plus a mulching mode as well.
Warranty – Do not forget to have a look at the warranty to make sure you get something that gives you peace of mind. As most zero turn mowers are not cheap, even the entry level models, you will normally find you get a decent warranty with them.
Let us now take a look at some of the best choices for a mower for 2021/2022. We have picked these models out as some of the best that will also be competitive on the pricing.
Best Zero Turn Mower To Buy In 2021/2022 – Top 5 Choices:
We will now present our top 5 choices for the best Zero turn mower in 2021 and 2022. These are great choices for both 2021 and coming into 2022.
We will give you the features and we will also talk about who the mower will be best suited for in regard to what you are using it for.
#1 Best Choice Overall: Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
This is a great zero turn mower! You will find a fantastic all-rounder that can be used at home for any job and for small commercial jobs.
We would recommend starting with this choice because it gives you all of the features that you need and is a very capable zero turn riding mower with decent power but also something that will not “outface” you if you are just looking for a great residential mower.
Here are the main pros and cons of this mower at a glance:
- Zero-Turn Capable So EASY To Use
- Quiet and Comfortable To Use
- Powerful Engine
- Durable And Low Maintenance
- Nearly Always Starts First Time
- Price – We could not think of one negative with this zero-turn mower apart from the fact that it is expensive.
Note: You can read a full review of the Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower on the site if you want in-depth information about this zero-turn mower…
The main reasons that this is our first choice for you is because it will give you great power. This means that it will cater for pretty much anyone that is looking for a zero-turn mower for small to medium-size jobs residentially. You could even use this for small commercial size jobs as well.
Despite being very powerful you will also find that this is very easy to manoeuvre and control all of that power. We still recommend taking things slowly when you first received this mower, but you should find everything fairly simple to use so you can get up and running quickly.
Another set of features that we really liked; this was also another reason that we put this as our #1 choice of the safety features that you get.
You will get a very convenient parking brake; this means that when you are not using, or you want to make sure that it stays still it will give you more peace of mind applying the brake.
Another great safety feature is the fact that the cutting deck has to be disengaged to be able to start the mower. This means that you don’t have to worry about accidentally starting the mower on concrete and having the cutting deck engaged. Not only will this give you a great safety feature, but it also means that you have far less chance of damaging the mower.
We also like the quality cutting that this zero-turn mower will give you. To find this information we had a look at several reviews from around the web and we think the key to such great quality is the fabricated 11-gauge steel cutting deck. It means that this mower will be able to power through pretty much any job that you give it and with extra-large wheels you will find that it is very easy to navigate and will give you a stable safe ride.
If you are looking for a zero-turn mower that gives you all of the features that you need and is a fantastic all-rounder, then we would highly recommend checking out the Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower.
#2 Craftsman Z525 Zero Turn Gas Powered Lawn Mower – Great Alternative Choice
This choice is another lawn mower that you can go for that will give you a fantastic all-rounder. You will find the Craftsman Z525 is very easy to manage so this makes it a perfect choice for a mower at home.
This will also give you a powerful engine for the size of the mower, as well as a wide cutting deck which comes in at 46 inches.
If you are looking for something that will allow you to carry out a thorough job then this is a great choice as it gives you the ability to cut, trim and clip all in one sweep for quick work.
Another feature that we love about the Craftsman Z525 is that it will give you a deck wash and this is something that you can use for quick underside cleaning of the mower to keep everything running smoothly.
Of course, this will also give you the zero-turn ability and it will give you a complete 360° turning radius, you will also find that this gives you the ability to mow in reverse.
On top of all of the above you will also find that this is very comfortable and will give you seating that will keep you in control and allow you to mow for as long as you wish.
The only downside with the Craftsman Z525, is that you may not find it as big or powerful as other choices that are on the market and the style of the mower may not suit some people.
Here is a quick breakdown of the pros and cons that you get with the Craftsman Z525:
Powerful engine for the size of the mower.
Autochoke means that you get a quick start.
Wide cutting deck at 46 inches.
Ability to cut, trim and clip in one sweep for quick cutting.
Deck wash for quick underside cleaning.
Ability to mow in reverse.
Zero turn ability with a full 360 degree turning radius.
Not as big or powerful as other choices on the market.
The Craftsman Z525 Zero Turn Gas Powered Lawn Mower is a fantastic choice for you if you want something that will give you an alternative to the Husqvarna MZ61. It focuses on being very easy to manage while also packing in all of the features that you need to be able to get any residential job done quickly.
The main features that standout with the Craftsman Z525 Zero Turn Gas Powered Lawn Mower is the ability to cut, trim and clip all in one pass to make the job quicker. We think you will also like the deck wash as well because this allows you to get very quick underside cleaning.
You will also get an autochoke that means the engine should start very quickly.
If you’re looking for something that is slightly more manageable than the top choice, then check out the Craftsman Z525 Zero Turn Gas Powered Lawn Mower.
#3 Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52″ Zero Turn Mower
The Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52″ Zero Turn Mower gives you a great alternative to the Craftsman Z525, it is very easy to manage but it ticks all of the boxes if you want something that has a powerful and reliable engine.
The engine is a twin cylinder engine that has a 23 hp Kawasaki behind it. If you are going for longevity and you want your mower to have a very reliable engine, then this is a great way of doing it. The fact that this gives you a twin cylinder engine means that it is not having to take as much pressure as a single cylinder. If you want something that will last, then this definitely is worth a look.
You will also find that this has a wide cutting deck which as we have explored above makes any job that you are carrying out far quicker. It will give you 52 inches of cutting deck and when you consider the size of this mower it still manages to stay compact and manageable. If you’re looking to get any residential job done quickly this is another very good reason to look at this mower.
Another thing that stands out with the Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52″ Zero Turn Mower is the hydrostatic transmission, the benefit of this is that you will be able to tweak the power to your liking. You are able to take some power away from the gears if you choose, this can be fantastic if you are new to a riding lawnmower and getting used to it. When you are ready you can open up power and torque of the gears.
The other benefit of this feature is that you can use it when you need more finesse, and you are in a tight spot and do not want the full power of the gear. When you are then on an open lawn, and you want to go faster you can simply open up the power. If you want the ultimate control over your speed, then this is another great reason to check out the Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52″ Zero Turn Mower.
It will also give you a very comfortable seat which is padded, and you will also get the mulching feature with the Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52″ Zero Turn Mower.
If you are looking for a very powerful zero turn mower, with a 52-inch-wide cutting deck, a hydrostatic transmission which makes it very easy to manage and it is all backed by a twin cylinder Kawasaki engine that makes it reliable – then this is the one for you.
#4 Ariens Zenith 60 (60″) 23.5HP Kawasaki Zero Turn Lawn Mower
This is another alternative to our choice above. The reason that we have put the Ariens Zenith 60 (60″) 23.5HP Kawasaki Zero Turn Lawn Mower in as one of our top 5 zero turn mowers is because this gives you many of the same features that you will find with the Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52″ Zero Turn Mower.
The key difference with the Ariens Zenith 60 (60″) 23.5HP Kawasaki Zero Turn Lawn Mower is an extra wide cutting deck. If you have a look at our third choice you will find that you get a 52-inch-wide cutting deck which should be ample, however if you really want to go as wide as possible then this one will give you many of the same features and has a 60-inch cutting deck.
This is super wide; it means that this choice is best suited for lawns that are a wide-open space and where you need to get as wide as possible to get the job done quicker.
Here are some of the main features of the Ariens Zenith 60 (60″) 23.5HP Kawasaki Zero Turn Lawn Mower:
- 5HP/726CC Kawasaki FX730 V-Twin OHV Engine
- 60-Inch, 3-Blade Fabricated Mower Deck
- Hydro-Gear ZT-3100 transmission
- Twin oil filters for easy maintenance
- Adjustable High-Back Plush Seat With Armrests
#5 Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 27 HP Briggs & Stratton Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
We have put our 5th choice for a great zero turn mower as the Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 27 HP Briggs & Stratton Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower. You will find that this choice is very similar to our #1 choice, there are a few key differences.
The Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 27 HP Briggs & Stratton Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower will give you a Briggs and Stratton engine instead of a Kawasaki. You will also find that this gives you slightly more HP.
This will allow you to get an extra edge on the power if needed and if you prefer the Briggs and Stratton engine then this may be for you.
We recommend comparing the two, you will find that both have been very well received and we would say if you needed slightly more power than this is the one to go for instead of our #1 choice.
Thanks for reading our top choices for a zero-turn mower. You should find these choices are up to date all the way through 2021 and for the start of 2022. We will of course update as we review new lawnmower models.
Remember, pick a zero-turn mower based on the power that you need, the features you need such as a hydrostatic transmission, the cutting width and make sure that you get something comfortable that is reliable and easy to manage.
You can also see a full review of all of the choices we recommended above.
Alternatively, if you want to go straight through to Amazon.com to check out our top choice for a zero-turn mower then you can click here…