02/06/2014

Tips for buying a lawnmower

Buying the perfect lawnmower isn’t as hard as you may think. By following some basic lawnmower buying tips, you will be sure to get a lawnmower that is quick and easy to use and ideal for your garden, giving you the perfect cut every time.

Tip 1: Bigger doesn’t mean better 

One of the biggest mistakes you can make when buying a new lawnmower is to buy one because it has the most power and the biggest motor. If you have a small lawn and buy a lawnmower with a large motor, I is likely that you will never get to use the lawnmower to its full potential. Instead of using the power as a guide as to which lawnmower to purchase, look at the size of the collection box. This will often indicate the size of the garden they are built for. A bigger grass box often means that it is suitable for a bigger garden. If your lawn would never fill the grass box, then it’s probably not the correct lawnmower for you. 

Tip 2: Getting stripes 

If you want stripes on your lawn, then you will need a rear roller on your lawnmower. This will mean you need to look at buying a traditional rotary lawnmower. Rotary lawnmowers come with wheels and create stripes by flattening the grass as it cuts. To get strips you will be required to mow the grass straight lines which can be difficult is you have an irregular shaped garden. 

Tip 3: Choose the correct power source 

Some people will immediately buy a petrol lawnmower thinking that it is the best option. Petrol lawnmowers are generally more expensive and should be used on larger gardens. For most gardens in the UK, electric lawnmowers are more than capable of providing the same quality finish just as quickly. There is also less on-going maintenance required on an electric machine. If you do have a large lawn that takes a lot of time to cut, a robotic lawnmower, like the Flymo 1200 R may be a better option. A robotic lawnmower will cut the grass when and how often you like and give you more time to do other things that you enjoy. 

Tip 4: Collect or not to collect 

Lawnmowers that collect the grass as you cut are typically slightly more expensive than those that don’t. If you cut the grass regularly, say once a week and quite short, then there may be no need to collect the grass you cut. Leaving the cut grass on your lawn will add nutrients back into the lawn helping keep it healthy and green. Contrary to public belief, leaving cut grass on the lawn does not create thatch. Removing your grass clippings every time you cut the lawn may actually harm the grass by creating a nitrogen imbalance. 

Tip 5: Consider the weight 

Lawnmowers come in all shapes and sizes, and because of this their weight varies too. If you find lawnmowers generally quite heavy to manoeuvre consider buying a wheeled rotary lawnmower like one of those in the Flymo Chevron range. The down side of a rotary lawnmower is in order to get a good cut; you will need to go up and down your lawn in a straight line, whereas a hover mower will allow you to cut in any direction. Hover mowers while still light, are more suited for irregular shaped gardens. 

Tip 6: Check the surface 

If your garden is uneven, you again may want to consider a rotary lawnmower. An uneven lawn may cause a hover lawnmower to lose the cushion of air that it requires to operate. The exception to this is the new Flymo UltraGlide with its unique DuoTech system which helps remove this problem. 

Tip 7: Dealing with irregular shaped gardens 

Hover mowers are best when you have an irregular shaped garden. They offer greater manoeuvrability than wheeled lawnmowers and allow the user to cut the grass in any direction. Grass collecting hover mowers still require the user to cut in straight lines, but they are easier to manoeuvre than wheeled lawnmowers making it quicker to cut the grass. They are also suitable for gardens with slopes. 

Tip 8: Size of the blade 

The size of your lawnmower blade matters. Generally speaking a larger bladed machine is suitable for larger gardens and will enable you to cut the grass more quickly. The downside is that the lawnmower will be slightly larger than a smaller bladed machine and will require slightly more room to store in the garden shed or garage when not in use. They are generally more expensive to buy also. 

Tip 9: Assembled or not 

One often overlooked consideration when buying a lawnmower is how it comes from the shop. If your new lawnmower comes fully assembled then all you will need to do is remove the lawnmower from the box and adjust the handles and away you go. If your lawnmower isn’t fully assembled then you will need to ‘build’ your lawnmower before you can start mowing the grass. For more complex machines this could take up to an hour. It is more common for wheeled lawnmowers to need assembling before use, while hover mowers typically come ready to go out the box. 

Tip 10: Where to buy 

When looking to buy your next lawnmower don’t rush to the first shop you see. Do some research online to narrow down your options. More information is available on the products available on the retailer’s websites than what they can offer in-store or in their catalogues. Once you have found a lawnmower you would like to buy, do some quick research on the price. The weekend is generally the best time to look as the big retailers in the UK typically do weekend sales. You can also look on their websites as they sometimes offer ‘online exclusives’ and provide discounts which you will not be able to get in the stores.

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