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Maybe you have a small yard or patch of grass and don’t need a more powerful mower. Or maybe you want to help protect our environment and don’t mind a little elbow grease when cutting your grass.
You may want to consider a manual reel mower.
Push reel mowers are fairly
Quick look: here are the best reel mowers in 2019:
- American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14: best for most homeowners, inexpensive,
high qualityproduct GreatStates 304-14: simple to adjust the cut height, ball bearing wheels make pushing a breeze
- Fiskars Staysharp 6208: 17″ cutting path shortens mow time, InertiaDrive Reel delivers extra cutting power, lifetime warranty
- Scotts 2000-20: very high quality and durable blades, ergonomic handle, classic design
- Earthwise 1819-18EW: includes reel sharpening kit, grass catcher and 10″ wheels to make pushing easier
How I Rated The Mowers
In order to provide you with the best information, I left no stone and grass blade unturned to provide you with a great list of choices for reel lawn mowers.
I read hundreds of reviews from all over the Internet – from Amazon, eBay, Home Depot, Lowes, etc. – plus the manufacturer’s pages for Fiskars, Great States, American Lawn Mower, Earthwise, and Scotts
After thoroughly reading both the positive and the negative reviews, I chose 5 push reel mowers that among the best in the field.
Once the reel mowers were selected, I considered each model individually.
- What are its pros and cons?
- What are its average ratings from customers?
- How reliable is this mower?
- Does it come with a warranty?
- Are there any unique features displayed by this mower?
- How much does it cost, and does its special features and performance rate a higher price tag?
It’s important to buy a product with a warranty. All of the mowers I choose have at least a
A necessary feature of any good mower – the mowers I picked have adjustments ranging from .5″ to 4″.
Reel lawn mowers are available in different widths which range from 14″ to 20″. The wider your reel mower is, the faster it will mow. A 14″ mower will cut your lawn about 30 times slower than a 20″ mower.
Quality of Cut
Several factors may affect the quality of cut, including sponginess of the turf, excessive thatch, or if the user tries to cut off an inordinate amount of grass height at one time.
The lower the cut height, the more probable that you might experience some of the following factors that might affect the quality of cut:
- Reel or traction speed or cutting unit drop-speed
- Tire pressure or engine governed speed
- Reel sharpness and bed knife angle and sharpness
- Cutting unit down-pressure setting or counterbalance
- Height of the cut
Ease of Use
A reel mower does not only have
It starts up whenever you do – no rope to pull, no cord to plug in, no oil or gas to worry about, and no idle to adjust
Why Buy a Reel Lawn Mower?
Reel lawn mowers have many fans – eco-friendly environmentalists, those people who love exercise, economical shoppers, and those people who hate noise and/or the smell of gasoline.
There are many reasons to purchase a real lawn mower:
- Economic – You can buy a
high qualityreel mower for around $60-$150 – depending on the features you want.
- Superior cutting ability – A reel mower provides an even, clean cut which seals grass blades to keep out any disease organisms and holds in moisture at the same time.
- Yields natural mulch – A reel mower disperses clippings via a fine spray that decomposes quickly (no clumping is involved). The clippings can be left safely on the lawn, and provide natural fertilizer.
- Safety – Reel mowers don’t throw out debris or rocks. They start when you start and stop when you stop.
- Appeals to many types of users – female, male, suburban, urban, old, young, all income levels, exercise enthusiasts and anyone who is environmentally aware.
- Nostalgia – Reel mowers bring back memories of times that were simpler.
- Fitness – A reel mower burns the same amount of calories per hour as downhill skiing, tennis, or low impact aerobics (approximately 400-450 calories)
- Low-cost, dependable mowers with very few maintenance costs.
- Pollution-free – No gas, no engine, no tune-ups, so it won’t be degrading the air quality.
- Quiet and safe – You don’t need to worry about waking up the neighbors early in the morning.
- Low maintenance – No spark plugs to replace, no filter that needs cleaning, no oil that needs to be checked or replaced.
- Lightweight alloys and plastics have decreased the weight of these mowers considerably.
- Reel mowers
start upevery single time!
- A reel mower is better for the health of the grass, unlike rotary mowers which rip off the tips of grass blades and makes them more exposed to diseases. Your reel mower will snip the grass tips and leave healthy trimmings to turn into mulch in the yard.
- Reel mowers cut shorter and don’t disturb the surface of the soil, and your lawn will be much less welcoming for weeds to grow.
- Reel lawn mowers are more maneuverable than power lawnmowers.
- It’s more aesthetically pleasing to use a reel lawn mower. The smell of fresh cut grass (without oil fumes and gas smells mixed in) can be pleasantly intoxicating. It’s so quiet that you will still be able to hear the kids playing or the birds singing.
- If you have a lot of trees and twigs in your yard, this mower might not be for you. You’ll have to rake and pick up twigs before mowing.
- Although many of the newer models are more lightweight, they will still give you and your muscles a good workout.
- This machine is human-powered, and not the best choice for people with energy or strength deficits or other disabilities.
- Most reel lawn mowers will need to have their blades sharpened about once a season – but that is true of any mower.
- Rocks can frequently chip mower blades.
- Uneven ground can be difficult for a reel mower.
- You’ll need to trim around sidewalks more if you have a reel mower since they’re set lower to the ground and won’t go over stone paths or sidewalk edges like power mowers can.
Difference Between Cheap and Expensive Models
As with most products, the more you spend, the more features you will get. The same holds true with reel mowers. Less expensive models generally have cheaper components.
Although my top choice is also one of the cheapest on the market. It is a GREAT product but doesn’t have many extra features
In my opinion, owners of reel mowers, just want something simple that works well with little maintaince. If you need more features, you may want to step up to a
Best Selling & Top Rated Models
- American Lawn Mower
- Great States
- Sun Joe
How Much Should I Expect To Pay?
The mowers below are normally priced between $50 and $200. It’s hard to get a better cut to price value than with a reel mower.
Reel Mower Reviews
1) American Lawn Mower 1204-14 Push Reel Mower
- Just push to start – No cords, keys, or buttons to remember
- Easy storage – Just hang it on the wall
- Quiet, engineless, and won’t ever disturb the neighbors
- Large weeds and small twigs get caught up in the blades, and you’ll need to stop mowing and remove them
- Non-adjustable handle
The American Lawn Mower 1204-14 features 8 1/2″ tall impact wheels, a 14″ cutting width, and alloy steel construction
This very economical machine weighs only 19 pounds, is excellent for cutting very narrow turf strips alongside sidewalks, and cuts each blade precisely (like using scissors).
My pick for the best reel mower!
Great States 304-14 Reel Lawn Mower
- Wheel height adjusts to 3 positions
- Five heat-treated blades stay sharp longer
- Quiet and environmentally friendly
- Needs lubrication before each use
- Narrow model, so the number of passes across the yard is increased
The Great States 304-14 features a steel unbreakable side plate, a tempered alloy bed knife blade, and steel reel, cushioned handle grips, a 1/2″ to 1 3/4″ adjustable cutting height, and easy, lightweight maneuverability.
Simple to assemble and use. One of the highest rated by consumers researched.
3) Fiskars StaySharp Max Reel Mower
- Stationary reel and precision-ground blades never make contact
- Eco-friendly mower eliminates the need for electricity or gas
- Special InertiaDrive reel glides through the toughest spots with double the cutting power
- Stops if anything other than grass gets in the blades (heavy dead leaves, twigs, etc.)
The Fiskars StaySharp Max Reel Mower boasts twice as much cutting power and is 60% easier-to-push than other standard reel mowers
4) Scotts 2000-20 Classic Push Reel Lawn Mower
- Wide 20″ cutting path reduces
timeneeded to mow
- Smooth ball bearings help blades to spin efficiently
- Foam grip loop-style handle
Lawnwill need to be mowed at least twice a week
- Won’t mow tall weeds or any other kind of debris
The Scotts 2000-20 has a cutting height of 1″ to 3″, 5 blades, and a QuickSnap height adjuster with 9 positions.
It features a unique rear-wheel design that improves maneuverability and reduces drag. Add to that easy assembly, a welded reel hood, and strong heat-treated blades.
5) Earthwise 1819-18EW Reel Mower
- No tools required for assembly
- Sports a comfortable cushioned ergonomic handle
- Economical and eco-friendly mower
- Hard to use if
grassis too high
- After mowing, you’ll need to either use a blower or rake up all the grass
The Earthwise 1819-18EW has an 18″ cutting width, tempered steel bed knife blade and reel, 6″ rear tracking wheels, durable 10″ composite front wheels, and 5 blade ball-bearings
After extensive research and reading hundreds of reviews, I choose the American Lawn Mower 1204-14 as the best reel lawn mower for most people.
It is priced very competitively, very easy to use and maintain and has thousands of
It’s powerful, fast, and maneuverable, and perhaps best of all – its blades will only require sharpening every five to ten years!
Own a reel mower? I’d love to hear how you like it and any tips you can share. Please leave a comment below.