What is a Steep Hill Mower?
Have you wondered how best you can mow your steep lawn? If yes, the most critical question that comes to your mind is what is the best mower for steep hills? Of course, there are many mowers, but how do you settle for the best mower for slopes? Read on through this article, and you will be well equipped to go for just that—the best.
Our Best Overall Pick For the Best Mowers for Steep Hills on The Market.
The Black + Decker 3-in-1 Corded Lawn Mower is our top pick of many mowers for steep hills. It has a corded mower, trimmer, and wheeled edger, all three combined in one. Not only that, but it also has an adjustable handle and height positions for comfort and control and is built for smaller yards.
When it comes to pricing, it is pocket friendly, and the item is readily available in the stores near you, or you can still order it online.
The Different Types of Mowers
Lawnmowers come in a variety of styles. The finest lawn mower for hills will most likely fall into one of the three categories: lawn tractors, rear-engine mowers, or zero-turn mowers, each with its own set of features and benefits. Finding the proper one is figuring out which traits are most beneficial in your situation.
Riding mowers aren’t all considered tractors. Rather than front-mounted decks, lawn tractors use large, mid-mounted decks. Operators use a steering wheel and pedal arrangement similar to a car to cut vast expanses of grass swiftly and effortlessly. They also have more powerful engines, which increases overall weight.
The significant distinction between lawn and garden tractors is their adaptability. Garden tractors may also plow snow, tow equipment, and perform other lawn maintenance tasks. As a result, there are numerous choices for enhancing the mower’s functionality.
Manufacturers make grass sweepers, fertilizer spreaders, aerators, rollers, sprayers, and other yard management tools. Read our article and find out what is the best time of day to fertilize lawn.
Rear-engine mowers differ from tractor mowers in a few minor ways. The engine is located on the back of the mower, as the name suggests. These mowers are often lighter and less potent than others, a trade-off that improves maneuverability and energy efficiency at the expense of torque.
The deck sizes on these mowers range from 28 to 34 inches (71.12 to 86.36 centimeters). Compared to more powerful mowers with larger decks, the smaller cutting deck means shorter mowing periods for larger yards or users in a hurry.
Due to a lower turning radius than tractor mowers, rear-engine mowers are more agile, providing a middle ground between heavier mowers that take up more room and zero-turn mowers that turn on a dime.
Rear-engine mowers are less expensive than other models because of their smaller size and lower power requirements. As a result, they’re ideal for lawns less than an acre (0.4 hectares) in size.
For yards with curves and tight turns, zero-turn mowers are ideal. But all in all, you ought to find the best zero-turn mower for hills. Their name comes from the dual hydrostatic transmissions that drive the side wheels independently—a separate lever controls each transmission.
When you push forward both levers, the mower follows a straight path; however, depressing one lever allows the mower to spin entirely in a space the size of the mower. Zero-turn mowers are ideal for individuals with a large lawn or limited time to mow.
These mowers are faster than lawn tractors, averaging 6 to 8 miles per hour (9.7 to 12.87 kilometers per hour) compared to 3 to 4 miles per hour (4.83 to 6.44 kilometers per hour) for lawn tractors. In addition, zero-turn mowers are more pleasant due to their big, padded pilot’s seat, which is gentle on the body.
Reduced stability is one of the disadvantages of zero-turn mowers on hills. We do not recommend you to use these mowers on slopes more than 10 degrees. Mowing on steep slopes is dangerous because of the high center of gravity.
Furthermore, without the benefit of a separate braking system, the dual-transmission design needs the throttles to remain neutral to stop, making them difficult to handle on downhill courses.
What is the Best Mower for Steep Hills – a Quick Glance
- Black + Decker 3-in-1 Corded Lawn Mower, String Trimmer & Edger: Best overall lawnmower. Star ratings: 5 stars.
- American Lawn Mower Company Push Reel Lawn Mower: Best for compact yards. Star ratings: 4 stars
- Black+ Decker 3-in-1 Lawn Mower, String Trimmer, and Edger: Best for tough turf. Star ratings: 4 stars
- Sun Joe Manual Reel Mower: Best for tough turf. Star ratings: 4 stars
- Craftsman M215: Best for Small or medium-sized yards. Star ratings:4.5 stars
Your Steep Hill Mower Buying Guide
Finding the finest lawn mower for hills necessitates some investigation. Of course, yard size and terrain type are the most important considerations, but motor and fuel type, weight, cutting width, and tire type and size can make the difference between a quick and easy mow and a time-consuming task.
One crucial part of mowing is the time it takes to complete the task. Consider the size of the yard versus the mower’s speed. Mowing large yards can take hours; reduce mowing time by investing in a swift and efficient mower to do the task in a reasonable length of time.
The size of your lawn is vital because it determines the size and type of mower you’ll require. A cheaper form of a lawnmower, such as a manual reel mower or a walk-behind powered lawnmower, is a more realistic alternative for your lawn-mowing needs if your lawn is less than 10,000 square feet (929 square meters).
A large heavy-duty walk-behind self-propelled lawnmower or a compact riding mower is the ideal choice for medium-sized lawns with sizes between 10,000 and 14,000 square feet (929 and 1,300 square meters), respectively.
A heavy-duty riding mower to a small tractor with category zero (Cat-0) implement is necessary for large lawns ranging from 15,000 square feet (1,394 square meters) to 5-6 acres (22.2 hectares).
The terrain is the first thing to consider while looking for the finest riding lawn mowers for hills. Riding mowers are capable of mowing a variety of terrain. Most mowers have some height adjustment, but for root-infested or pockmarked lawns, you will require larger clearances to avoid blade damage and limit the risk of becoming stuck.
Gas vs. Electric
The Use of the cord is on the decline thanks to recent advances in battery technology. In recent years, battery-powered riding lawn mowers that do not require an electrical tether have grown in favor. Electric mowers are environmentally friendly, quiet, light, and easy to maintain.
The battery life is an essential factor to consider. If the mower runs out of battery power before completing the job, recharge may take hours. Traditional gas-powered motors are more powerful than their electric counterparts, but they are also much noisier and produce exhaust pollutants.
Gas mowers have higher torque, cut through thick or overgrown grass more efficiently, and recharge quickly. Those with vast properties or dense grass should choose a gas-powered machine with a large fuel capacity for improved run time and power.
The cutting width, also known as the mower deck or cutting deck, refers to how large a swath a mower can cut in a single pass. More expansive cutting decks necessitate fewer passes to finish a lawn. Small lawns measuring ½ acre (0.20 hectares) or less require a cutting width of fewer than 40 inches (15.748 centimeters).
42 to 48 inch (106 to 121 centimeters) expansive decks work well for 12 to 2 acres (4.86 to 0.81 hectares) lawns. If your lawn is more than three acres (1.21 hectares), look for a mower with a cutting deck that is 50 inches (127 centimeters) wide or wider.
The search for the best riding mowers for hills or flat homes should include comparing yard size versus cutting width to ensure that the mower can do the job in a fair amount of time.
Riding lawn mowers can be somewhat cumbersome. The engine must be powerful enough to operate the machine at a decent speed, cut through dense vegetation, and carry a rider’s weight up and down different terrain because they are self-propelled. Mowers that are smaller and lighter do not have the same power as lawn tractors with larger engines.
Smaller yards necessitate less effort. Look for a mower with at least 14 horsepower in the sub-acre range. Mowers in the 14 to 16 horsepower range will suffice for yards of one to two acres, whereas powerful mowers in the 18 to 24 horsepower range will be enough for yards of three acres (1.21 hectares) or more.
Riding lawn mowers range in price from basic models with fuel-efficient engines to high-end versions with enough horsepower to handle almost any gardening chore. More powerful mowers, like automobiles, are more expensive and less efficient than their lightweight equivalents.
The tires are the only lawnmower that contacts the ground, other than the blades. Therefore, for traction and safety, the correct tires are essential. Lug tires are traction tires that are strong and durable. Rubber blocks separated by a channel create the grip. They are most commonly found on lawn tractors and are helpful on wet, slippery, or sloping ground.
Lug tires are not recommended for virgin grass since they destroy it. Smooth tires help to protect manicured lawns from damage or ruts. However, they are not suitable for mowing on hills or slopes due to their lack of grip.
Turf tires bring lug and smooth tire types together. These tires are often broader, allowing the mower’s weight to be distributed more evenly across the tire’s surface area. As a result, turf tires give adequate traction on slopes and hills without tearing up the lawn as much as lug tires do.
Brush vs. Brushless
The presence of a brush distinguishes a brushed from a brushless motor. The brush is a bundle of carbon wires used to convey electrical energy that rotates the riding mower’s driveshaft, and you can only see it in electric motors. Brushless motors are driven by magnetic force rather than physical touch.
Brushless motors are quieter than brushed motors, and they sense how much energy is needed to keep running and change the power accordingly. In addition, because fewer mechanical parts wear out, they require less maintenance.
Because the metal constantly creates and breaks magnetic contacts, brushed motors are noisier, delivering more power, faster speeds, and a broader torque range.
The engine accounts for 18% to 25% of the overall weight of the average tractor and lawn riding mower, which weighs 470 pounds (213 kilograms). Mowers with more horsepower can weigh up to 600 pounds (272 kilograms), while lighter electric ones can weigh as little as 400 pounds (181 kilograms).
Mowers that get power from electricity are the lightest. This is because the absence of a large internal combustion engine reduces weight dramatically.
The heaviest riding mowers are zero-turn mowers. The weight of a light zero-turn mower can be up to 650 pounds (294.8 kilograms). Heavier models can weigh up to 1,000 pounds (453 kilograms). Heavy mowers are more powerful, but they sink on soft or marshy turf and have lower fuel efficiency.
When using mechanical equipment, safety is critical. For the unwary, whirring blades, gasoline engines, and hundreds of pounds of weight can spell tragedy. When using a lawnmower, keep the following safety tips in mind:
- Before mowing, walk the yard to ensure it’s free of debris that the blades might toss.
- Keep discharge chutes away from people, pets, automobiles, and buildings.
- To avoid a fire, let gasoline mowers cool before refueling.
- Do not operate the mower in a garage or other enclosed area with insufficient ventilation.
- When mowing on an incline, maintain the mower parallel to the slope’s direction. The chance of a rollover accident increases when you mow parallel to the hill.
- To avoid an accidental startup while working on the equipment, disconnect the spark plug before maintenance.
- Allow no more than two riders on the mower.
- Many riding mowers have a dead man’s switch, which senses the driver’s weight and shuts down the engine if the rider gets out of the seat or stands up, lowering the risk of a runaway mower.
Our Top Picks for The Best Mowers for Steep Hills
Black + Decker 3-in-1 Corded Lawn Mower: Best Overall Lawnmower
Amazon’s Choice Award in Walk-Behind Lawnmowers
Power Source: Corded electric
Item dimensions: 15 x 7 x 37 inches (38 x 17 x 93 centimeters)
Style: Corded lawn mower
Item weight: 9.9 pounds (4.5 kilograms)
Cutting width: 12 inches (30 centimeters)
Operation mode: Automatic
Power source: Electric-corded
The BLACK+DECKER 12-inch (30.48 centimeters) 3-in-1 Compact Electric Lawnmower is a lightweight machine that combines a corded mower, trimmer, and wheeled edger. For improved torque and cutting power at the string, it’s fit with a gas-free 6.5 amp motor and Power Drive TM Transmission.
It is fitted with adjustable handle and height positions for comfort and control and built for smaller yards with a 12-inch (30 centimeters) cutting width and 1.6-inch (4.06 centimeters) cutting height. RPM: 8000 rpm. Mow your grass in tight spaces and on slopes with ease, then disconnect the mower deck to use as a string trimmer, then swivel the trimmer head to use as an edger.
Ideal for use in tiny yards and along borders, walkways, and flowerbeds. A cord retention device is incorporated to avoid accidental cord disconnection. There is no extension cord included.
What We Liked
- Easily converts from mower to trimmer to edger for three tools in 1.
- The 6.5 amps motor and power drive transmission provide maximum performance when trimming through the toughest weeds, grass, and overgrowth.
- Automatic Feed Spool lets you continue working without bumping or having to stop to adjust the spool.
What We Didn’t Like
- The trimmer sometimes comes off of the base while mowing the lawn.
- Sometimes the cord gets jammed and doesn’t release as it should.
- You may deal with a tangled cord at some point.
American Lawn Mower Company Push Reel Lawn Mower: Best for Compact Yards
Amazon’s Choice Award in walk behind lawn mowers
Power source: Self-propelled
Item dimensions: 20 x 24 x 42.5 inches (50 x 60 x 107 centimeters)
Material: Alloy steel
Style: Reel only
Item weight: 20 pounds (9 kilograms)
Cutting width: 14 inches (35 centimeters)
Operation mode: Manual
American Lawn Mower Company is a lawnmower manufacturer based in the United States. The 14-Inch (35.56 centimeters) 4-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower is a green alternative to gas-powered lawnmowers. Furthermore, this lawnmower is simple to operate and produces no pollutants.
To improve the appearance of your lawn, it can trim it in a precise scissor-like action that does not shred the grass. In addition, this reel lawn mower boasts a simple, low-maintenance design that only requires sharpening once every 3-5 years.
Ideal for teenagers over the age of 13 and small yards. When you purchase it, you won’t have to worry about the fuel, maintenance, or repairs that make this push blade mower such a good investment.
It boasts a 4-blade reel with 14 inches (35 centimeters) cutting width and durable 8.5 inches (21.59 centimeters) polymer wheels for maximum maneuverability—mechanical lawnmower with an adjustable blade height of 0.5 inches to 1.75 inches (1.27 to 4.44 centimeters) with scissor action cut.
Manual grass cutter blades hail from heat-treated alloy steel that stays sharp for years.
Environment-friendly alternative to gas-powered lawnmowers, which is pollution-free and noise-free; Low maintenance, lightweight, and easy to use. Capable of cutting grass up to 4 inches (10 centimeters) tall places it above other options.
What We Liked
- They produce no greenhouse gases since they use no fuel.
- They don’t make a lot of noise.
- They provide you with some workouts depending on the weight of the mower.
- They’re less expensive as there are no operating or maintenance costs. Therefore, it cuts down your turf maintenance cost.
What We Didn’t Like
- It jams quickly – Don’t expect it to slice straight through if sticks or bark get trapped in the blades.
- The gap between wheels and cutting area.
Black + Decker 3-in-1 Lawn Mower, String Trimmer, and Edger: Best for Tough Turf
Power source: Battery-powered
Item dimensions: 15.25 x 40.5 x 7.38 inches (38.7 x 103 x 18.7 centimeters)
Style: 20-volt 3-in-1 lawnmower kit
Item weight: 9.9 pounds
Cutting width: 12 inches (30 centimeters)
Operation mode: Automatic
Batteries: 1 lithium-ion battery required (included)
It has three tools in one easy convert from the mower to trimmer to edger. AFS automatic feed system ensures continuous work without bumping and having to stop. Ideal property size 750 square feet (69.68 square meters). Power drive transmission prevents bogging down. Its cutting heights: 1.6 to 2.4 inches (4 to 6 centimeters).
It has an adjustable height deck & trimmer, and pivoting handle. Charge time at 60 percent 2.5 hours. Inclusive of (2) batteries for extended run time.
With this 3-in-1 small lawnmower, you can easily mow, trim, and edge. Power drive transmission is simple to use and store, and it cuts through thick undergrowth. In addition, the Automatic Feed Spool provides smooth, uninterrupted operation.
What We Liked
- It has a power drive transmission that prevents bogging down in heavy grass and weeds. Adjustable height deck & trimmer and pivoting handle provide maximum comfort, control, and ideal cutting height.
- It includes two batteries for extended runtime.
What We Didn’t Like
- According to one buyer, the mower has a small footprint and requires more passes than a typical mow.
Sun Joe Manual Reel Mower: Best for Tough Turf
Power source: Manual
Item dimensions: 29.5 x 22 x 9.9 inches (75 x 56 x 25 centimeters)
Material: Alloy steel
Style: 16-inch (41-centimeter)
Item weight: 22 pounds (9.9 kilograms)
Cutting Width: 16 inches (41 centimeters)
Number of positions: 4
Operation mode: Manual
Sun Joe MOW is a simple-to-use, lightweight, agile, and cost-effective push reel mower with no dirty gas. The Sun Joe MJ500M Reel Mower with Grass Catcher is a quiet lawnmower that can handle even the most challenging turf. In addition, the MJ500M comes with a convenient rear collecting bag to keep your yard neat.
The Mow Joe MJ500M has a 16-inch (40.64 centimeters) broad cutting path and a four-position height adjustment lever powered by you. A two-year warranty backs the Sun Joe Mow Joe. On small lawns, it’s simple to push and maneuver. It boasts a manual height adjustment in four positions.
There is no need for upkeep. It has 1.81 inches (4.6 centimeters) as the maximum cutting height and 0.88 inches (2.24 centimeters) as the minimum cutting height. Cutting depths of up to 1.81 inches (4.6 centimeters) are possible with tailoring.
The grass catcher can hold up to 6.6 gallons and is simply detachable. It has a deck that resists rust.
What We Liked
- They’re better for the health of your lawn.
- Push reel mowers make your lawn look more admirable.
- They don’t give off noise pollution.
- They don’t give off greenhouse gasses.
- They were cheaper.
- They provide a bit of exercise.
- There’s no mess, no fuss with push reel mowers.
What We Didn’t Like
- Build quality: The wheels and the handle appear to be the two “weak links” in particular. Many customers have reported their wheels locking up during mowing or sometimes falling off entirely.
- Blade sharpness flaws upon arrival: In addition to the construction quality issues, there are blade sharpness issues upon receipt of the device.
- The grass catcher isn’t very effective: Many of the other manual reel mowers in this price range don’t have a grass catcher. But, if you’re interested in this one because it has this feature, don’t jump to conclusions just yet. Because, regrettably, many users who have purchased and used the Sun Joe MJ500M have cited the grass catcher as one of the model’s critical flaws, claiming that it is not very user-friendly and ineffective at actually gathering the clippings.
Craftsman M215: Best for Small or Medium-Sized Yards
Amazon’s Choice Award in Walk-Behind Lawn Mowers
Power source: Gas-powered
Item dimensions: 39 x 24 x 17.75 inches (99 x 60.96 x 45.09 centimeters)
Style: Lawn mower
Cutting width: 21 inches (53.34 centimeters)
Item weight: 82.8 pounds (37.56 kilograms)
Craftsman 159cc 21 will help you perfect your lawn. With a bagger, it’s a 3-in-1 FWD lawnmower. This front-wheel-drive lawnmower features a 159cc engine with recoil start and auto choke, as well as side and rear discharge and mulching capabilities-just pull to begin. It has a 21-inch (53.34-centimeter) screen.
The cutting deck lets you mow more grass in fewer passes, making it ideal for small or medium-sized yards. It has a dual lever that will enable you to change the height of the trims between 6 different settings. In addition, the zag treading on the 8-inch (20.32-centimeter) front and 11-inch (27.94 centimeters) rear wheels provide extra traction.
It includes a two-year warranty. The unit offers side discharge, rear discharge, and mulching capabilities. It has self-propelled and variable speeds allowing you to move around your yard with less effort and at your preferred propulsion speed.
What We Liked
- Most purchasers commented that the Craftsman M215 cut and mulched very well.
- Many owners liked that the mower was easy to start.
- The mower has multiple speeds making it effortless to use.
- Several owners found the mower easy to assemble out of the box.
- Some loved the good traction afforded by its big rear wheels that made traversing over hills and rough terrain easy.
What We Didn’t Like
- A few reviewers noted that the mower was loud and needed hearing protection when using the mower.
FAQs on Steep Hill Mowers
Are Zero-turn Mowers Suitable for Mowing Hills?
Zero-turn mowers struggle on hills. The caster wheels in front of zero-turn mowers lack a lot of stability and traction; this is why they struggle on hills. This makes going up steep hills difficult for them.
Zero-turn mowers can often handle a sloped yard, but they lose traction if the slope exceeds 10 or 15 degrees. Because it has traction and stability, a standard mower performs significantly better on a hill.
How to Mow a Steep Hill With a Ride-on Mower?
First and foremost, some ride-on mowers are unsuitable for anything other than flat terrain mowing. Next, make sure the mower you purchase is capable of handling slopes. Some are designed for slopes as steep as 15 degrees, while others work best for even steeper slopes. Even with one of these mowers, though, caution is advised.
Go up and down for ride-on mowers (NOT side to side). This gives the driving wheels optimum traction and reduces the risk of rolling. It also prevents ‘crabbing,’ which occurs while mowing crossways on any slope and causes the machine’s heavy end to want to slide downward, making slope mowing difficult.
How to Mow a Ditch With a Riding Lawn Mower?
Check out the incline. Make your attempt to push the lawnmower up the slope. The hill is too steep for a riding mower if you can’t back up. With a riding mower, mow in an up-and-down manner. If you’re comfortable on the slope and your mower can back up, use a mid-mount mower to back up the hill and then forward to the bottom of the ditch.
For a forward-mount mower, reverse the directions. Rather than coasting down the slope, drive carefully up and down the hill (low gear). If the hill is too steep for a riding mower, mow with a push mower. Push the mower sideways down the slope, so it doesn’t run you over if you slip. Using a string trimmer, remove any sharp edges or drops in the hill.
What is the Steepest Slope You Can Mow?
Most push mowers will work on a slope of 15-20 degrees but double-check with your mower’s instructions to be sure. There aren’t many mowers that can manage temperatures above 20 degrees. You should not use Ride-on mowers for anything above 15 degrees unless specific for greater slopes.
Check before you buy because not all ride-on mowers work best for hills. It would be best if you only mowed up and down the slope for the most significant results when mowing on a hill with a ride-on mower.
Our Final Say on the Best Mowers for Steep Hills
Mowing is always challenging, whether you have a small patch of land or a large, luscious green lawn! This chore becomes considerably more difficult when you have an unkempt lawn or a lawn in a mountainous place. Cutting and gathering grass clippings in an untidy manner takes a long time and leaves your hands and clothes filthy.
If you want a well-kept garden or lawn with evenly shaped grass, there is something you should get as soon as possible. The Black + Decker 3-in-1 Corded Lawn Mower is the most effective hill lawnmower! It combines a corded mower, trimmer, and wheeled edger, among other advantages over the other mowers.
Having read through this article, I believe you now have all it takes to select the best mowers for hills that will work best for you at an affordable and cost-effective price.