Best Push Reel Mower US

Best Push Reel Mower 2021 – US

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Summary

Best Push Reel MowerIn modern times, we are used to having powered yard equipment that simply plugs in and goes. However, there are a lot of people that prefer to use a more traditional type of equipment and there are many benefits in doing so.

A push reel mower, which is sometimes called a cylinder mower or a manual mower is a great alternative for people who want a quiet and easy operation, something that is great for the environment, and a mower that delivers on cut quality.

However, since most of us are only familiar with buying gas or electrically-powered mowers, it can be a little overwhelming being thrown into this seemingly old-fashioned world. But let me reassure you, while cylinder mowers are the oldest type of lawn mower on the market; there are many incredible modern designs that are sure to surprise you.

In this article, we are going to be looking at five of the very best push reel mowers, giving you an excellent idea of some of the most robust and popular products currently available on the US market. I will also be giving you some great buying advice to ensure that you will be able to find a product that works well for you and your yard.

Are Push Reel Mowers Any Good?

Something that worries a lot of people when they consider buying a manual mower is that they simply won’t be as good as a powered model. Now, let me level with you; a reel mower isn’t going to have the same degree of power compared to a gas version. However, they are amazing if you want to achieve an immaculate lawn as they can be much more precise and provide a close bowling green cut.

But another key consideration is whether the manual lawn mower will be easy to use. A lot of homeowners begin to break a sweat at the mere thought of lugging a heavy piece of equipment around the yard. This is something of a common misconception because, in truth, manual mowers are not that much different in terms of moving them around from a regular powered mower.

If your grandparents have told you that reel mowers are a nightmare to push, this is likely because the last time they used one, it was a rusty, cumbersome, outdated piece of equipment. In modern times, technology has come on leaps and bounds and the reel mowers that we are now seeing are much more lightweight, efficient and user-friendly.

According to one reputable retailer, these push mowers are returned just 3% of the time and this is rarely due to the user not liking how the machine operates. You may find that they are a little heavy, especially if you have been used to a self-propelled mower, but you’ll also find them much easier to maneuver than a hefty, non-self-propelled gas beast.

What Are The Benefits Of A Push Reel Mower?

What Are The Benefits Of A Push Reel MowerSomething that a lot of people believe is that manual mowers couldn’t possibly have any benefits. It’s 2021; surely everything must be powered? But this is not the case. There are a lot of reasons why these mowers are an excellent choice, so let’s take a look at some of these now.

  • Push reel mowers are much more lightweight, especially when compared to gas machines.
  • Manual mowers are far more environmentally friendly and put out zero emissions.
  • This type of lawn mower will provide you with a much quieter mowing experience, giving your neighbors more peace in the process.
  • Manual mowers are much better for the health of your grass. Unlike rotary mowers, which can chop at the blades of grass, causing damage to them, a manual mower uses a scissor-like cutting action with multiple blades. The sharp blades cut the grass in a precise clean cut, resulting in a healthier, thicker and disease-free lawn.
  • Manual reel mowers are used for most luxurious lawns as they cut the grass cleanly and short, providing that prestigious appearance.
  • Push reel mowers automatically mulch, leaving the grass clippings spread evenly across the lawn and delivering much-needed nutrients back into it.
  • Manual reel mowers are more compact compared to their gas/electric corded counterparts meaning easier transportation and less storage.
  • Unlike other types of mowers, the push reel requires very little maintenance.

 

Best Push Reel Mower List

ImageTitleDeck SizeCutting HeightsMore Details
American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 Review

American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 Review

140.5" to 1.7"Full Review

Check Price
American Lawn Mower Company 1815-18 Review

American Lawn Mower Company 1815-18 Review

181" to 2.5"Full Review

Check Price
Snow Joe MJ500M Review

Snow Joe MJ500M Review

164 (0.79" to 1.81")Full Review

Check Price
Fiskars Stay Sharp Max Reel Mower Review (362050-1001)

Fiskars Stay Sharp Max Reel Mower Review (362050-1001)

181" to 4"Full Review

Check Price
Great States 415-16 Review

Great States 415-16 Review

160.5" to 2.5"Full Review

Check Price

Best Push Reel Mower Reviews

Great States 415-16 Review
Mower Type: Manual
Cut Type: Cylinder
Deck Size: 16cm
Cut Heights: 0.5" to 2.5"
Lawn Size: Medium, Small
Great States

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Summary

This is a 5-blade manual lawn mower that has a cutting width of 16 inches. There is the option to purchase only the reel if you need a replacement, which is great if you are in it for the long haul. And I do not doubt that this will be a long-term investment since it is made from incredibly durable alloy steel designed to withstand everything that you will put it through.

Main Features

  • 5 steel blades
  • Lightweight at 51 lbs
  • Cutting width of 16”
  • 10" composite wheels
  • Easy assembly
  • T handle design
  • Adjustable blade height of 0.5”- 2.5”
  • Cuts grass up to 4 inches tall

The mower weighs less than any other design I have reviewed, weighing just 20lbs; if you need something easy to use, this is it!

The alloy steel design also extends to the blades which are intended to stay sharper for longer. They are able to cut grass up to a length of 4 inches, so this makes an ideal choice for anyone whose yard has seen better days.

The mower is easily put together in as little as ten minutes and requires no special tools, so you can get started pretty much right out of the box.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • 5 blades
  • 16-inch cutting width
  • Lightweight
  • Made from strong materials
  • Easy to put together
Cons
  • No grass catcher bag (optional extra)
Fiskars Stay Sharp Max Reel Mower Review
Mower Type: Manual
Cut Type: Cylinder
Deck Size: 18cm
Cut Heights: 1" to 4"
Lawn Size: Large, Medium
Fiskars Logo

Features:

Larger Rear Wheels

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Features:

Larger Rear Wheels

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Summary

While this mower has a cutting width of 18 inches, which is excellent for slightly larger yards, there is a smaller version with a cutting width of 17 inches if you have something a little smaller.

Main Features

  • 5 steel chain-drive blades
  • 60 Percent Easier to Push
  • Clippings forward chute
  • Weight at 51 lbs
  • Cutting width of 18”
  • Loop handle design
  • Single height adjustment lever
  • Adjustable blade height of 1”- 4”

It also features a choice of cutting heights which can be easily adjusted using just one hand. If you are in the market for something that operates easily, you may have just found it. Furthermore, it is easy to assemble and takes barely any time.

The manufacturer claims that this manual mower is up to 60% easier to push than other mowers of the same type. I can back up this claim since the inset wheels give you greater freedom of movement and will also allow you to cover more grass in one pass.

The InertiaDrive means that this mower is suitable for all types of grass and the StayShape blades almost never need any maintenance.

One of the best things about this lawn mower is that it has a choice of four cutting heights which is not something we see in all mowers, especially manual ones. This is easy to alter giving you much more diversity with how you use the mower during the varying seasons and conditions.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Easier to use and push
  • InertiaDrive
  • Designed to cut longer grass (Including southern varieties like St. Augustine, Zoysia, Bahia and Bermuda.)
  • StaySharp blades
  • 18” cutting width
  • Easily adjustable cutting height
  • Made from robust plastic
Cons
  • Heavier at 51.7lbs
Snow Joe MJ500M Review
Mower Type: Manual
Cut Type: Cylinder
Deck Size: 16cm
Cut Heights: 4 (0.79" to 1.81")
Lawn Size: Medium, Small
Sun Joe

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Summary

If you are looking for a manual mower that has a generous cutting width with a grass catcher box to match, then this makes an excellent choice. It comes with a 6.6-gallon catcher bag and a 16-inch cutting width that makes it perfect for both medium and large-sized yards.

Main Features

  • 5 steel blades
  • 6.6-gallon grass catcher
  • Lightweight at 22 lbs
  • Cutting width of 16”
  • Loop handle design
  • 8.8” polymer wheels
  • Adjustable blade height of 0.79”- 1.81”

The mower sits on two 8.8” wheels that offer an excellent amount of stability and make the device a dream to push around. What’s more, it is super lightweight at just 22lbs making it really easy to move without having to have the strength of a Greek God (or Goddess.)

This push reel mower is manufactured using high-quality steel which is one of the most durable materials where yard equipment is concerned. Moreover, it will resist rust and corrosion.

One of the best things about this lawn mower is that it has a choice of four cutting heights which is not something we see in all mowers, especially manual ones. This is easy to alter giving you much more diversity with how you use the mower during the varying seasons and conditions.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • 18-inch cutting width
  • Padded handle
  • Rot-resistant grass catcher box
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to assemble
  • Can purchase the reel only
Cons
  • A plastic deck is less durable than steel
American Lawn Mower Company 1815-18 Review
Mower Type: Manual
Cut Type: Cylinder
Deck Size: 18cm
Cut Heights: 1" to 2.5"
Lawn Size: Large, Medium
American Lawn Mower Company

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Summary

This American Lawn Mower Company 1815-18 is a great choice for bigger yards since it comes with an impressive cutting width of 18 inches. The blades are effective and sharp as well as being incredibly robust. Furthermore, the entire deck is fashioned from an extremely durable plastic which gives you the confidence that this is a machine that will stand the test of time.

Main Features

  • 5-blade reel
  • Lightweight at 27 lbs
  • Cutting width of 18”
  • Loop handle design
  • 10” polymer wheels
  • Adjustable blade height of 1”- 2.25”
  • Cuts grass up to 4 inches tall

It comes with a large grass catcher box that is made from rot-resistant fabric, so no matter what the weather or if it gets wet, you won’t need to worry about replacing it. Storing the American Lawn Mower Company 1815-18 couldn’t be easier either, thanks to the compact design.

Putting the mower together can be done in as little as ten minutes and the entire process is completely tool-free making it super-simple.

The American Lawn Mower Company 1815-18 is fitted with a looped handle that comes with a soft cushioned grip for a more comfortable mowing experience and a pair of ten-inch strong and stable wheels for improved maneuverability.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • 18-inch cutting width
  • Padded handle
  • Rot-resistant grass catcher box
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to assemble
  • Can purchase the reel only
Cons
  • A plastic deck is less durable than steel
American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 Review
Mower Type: Manual
Cut Type: Cylinder
Deck Size: 14cm
Cut Heights: 0.5" to 1.7"
Lawn Size: Medium, Small
American Lawn Mower Company

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Features:

Rear Roller (Stripes)

Cutting Functions:

Cut and Collect - Rear Discharge

Summary

There is the option to purchase the reel only or reel with the grass catcher for this American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 mower, if you are looking for a replacement. However, for the entire mower, you are getting a very robust and sturdy machine. What’s more, it weighs just 20lbs, which is great for a manual mower as you will not be tackling a significant weight when moving it around the yard. To further aid with maneuverability, the mower sits on two 8.5” polymer wheels, which give it incredible stability.

Main Features

  • 4-blade reel
  • Lightweight at 20 lbs
  • Cutting width of 14”
  • T handle design
  • 8.5” polymer wheels
  • Adjustable blade height of 0.5”-1.75”
  • Cuts grass up to 4 inches tall

The American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 is fitted with four sharp blades which are extremely durable. So much so that they will only need to be sharpened once every 3 to 5 years. There is the option to purchase a sharpening kit, so that you do not have to fork out for this type of maintenance when the time comes.

Furthermore, the blades are capable of working with grass up to four inches, so even when your yard is overgrown, it will make light work of it. You have a 14-inch cutting width which is suitable for most small to medium yards.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Can handle long grass
  • Four sharp, durable blades
  • Can buy reel separately
  • Easy to assemble
  • Made from durable materials
  • Long, T-shaped handle
  • Stable wheels
  • 14” cutting width
Cons
  • No grass catcher box (optional extra)

What To Look For In A Push Reel Mower

What To Look For In A Push Reel MowerI have talked extensively in my previous posts about how important it is to look at the individual features of a lawn mower to ensure that it will be suitable for your yard. In reality, one of the first things you should think about is the size of your yard. A manual lawn mower is excellent but if you have a large yard, there is no denying that it is going to take some time to cover all that ground.

If you are happy to do that, then great, there is no reason why you shouldn’t invest in this type of equipment. However, if you feel that you would struggle to tackle a larger backyard with a manual mower, it might be worth you considering another type. But for those who have their heart set on getting their hands on one of the most trusted and long-used pieces of yard equipment, here’s what to look for.

Cutting Width

You’ll notice that when you purchase any type of lawn mower, one of the first pieces of information that the manufacturer or sales assistant will provide is the cutting width. In short, this is the width of grass that the mower will cut in one pass; typically it is just the width of the mower blade itself.

You should think about the size of your lawn compared with the cutting width. Usually, 14 inches will be more than sufficient for an average-sized space. But many push reel lawn mowers go up to around 18 inches. The only issue is that a lot of people become concerned that the mower will be difficult to handle. This is not strictly true, but much of this will depend on your physical abilities.

For elderly people or those without much strength, it might be a wise idea to go for a smaller cutting width rather than compromising yourself with a heavier machine.

Blades

Grass Catcher Size

Most of the time, you would have been used to using a rotary lawn mower whose blades spin in order to cut the grass. However, there is a key difference with a manual mower and that is that the blades act in a similar way to a pair of scissors. This makes them ideal for cutting both the lawn and any weeds that may be present.

However, nothing is ever that simple, is it? And when it comes to choosing your manual lawn mower, you must think about how many blades you would like. There are typically three choices; four blades, five blades, or seven blades.

The number of blades you choose will largely depend on the type of grass you have. For thicker grass varieties such as Bermuda, you would be better off opting for a seven-blade mower. In contrast, if you have much less dense grass, like Kentucky Bluegrass then something with fewer blades will likely do the job well.

But you should also think about your own physical abilities. While I support my claim that these mowers are not tremendously difficult to push around, the more blades you have, the more challenging they will be to push. However, the more blades you have, the more cutting power you will have; therefore, it is important to find a balance between being able to operate the mower comfortably and getting an effective cut.

Grass Catcher Size

If you use any sort of mower, you will probably be familiar with the grass catcher box, although this is not an obligatory feature of these mowers because, as we have discovered, they will mulch. However many reel mowers do come with a grass catcher box, or at the very least you have the ability to purchase it as an optional extra. You should look at the capacity of the grass catcher box to determine if it will be suitable for your lawn.

The last thing you want is to be having to stop and empty the grass catcher box multiple times; you want to limit this to as little as possible. Judge the size of your lawn with the size of the grass box and you will be able to quickly decide if the mower you are looking at will be fit for purpose.

If you do decide to cut the lawn without the catcher, the grass clippings will be cut finely and spread over the lawn providing a natural fertilizer.

How Easy Is It To Move?

Push Mowers CuttingIt is blindingly clear that a push mower will only be as good as the person operating it, so it is vital that the model you choose will suit your ability. If you can test the machine before you commit to buying it, that is great, however, if this is not possible, you should ask yourself two questions;


How heavy is the mower?

Can you easily move it around to cover the entire lawn?

The second question will hinge on a few factors. Primarily, you should look at the size of the wheels. Larger wheels give the mower a much greater degree of stability and this can mean that you are more easily able to push it around. However, you want to make sure that this does not mean you are ending up with a heavier piece of equipment.

Consider The Cons with Push Reel Mowers

I will always advocate the use of a manual mower, these are very good pieces of equipment but much like anything, there are things that are not so great about them. It is important to think about these as sometimes, they may affect your ability to use the mower effectively.

The main downsides to a push reel lawn mower are:

  • Any tall weeds may be missed by a reel mower as they have a tendency to roll over them rather than cut them due to the reel cutting method.
  • If your grass is too long, you will likely find that some reel mowers are extremely difficult to move around. Reel mowers in general are designed for people who maintain their lawn on a regular basis, they are not designed for neglected or overgrown lawns.
  • Periodically the blades/reel will need to be adjusted in order to keep it sharp and cutting effectively.
  • Especially if you have a larger yard, mowing the lawn can be a little more time consuming when using a push reel mower compared to using a powered version. For this reason, these manual mowers are typically better-suited to smaller areas.

Tips For Using A Push Reel Lawn Mower

Tips For Using A Push Reel Lawn MowerIf you have been used to using a powered mower then it can feel slightly strange moving to something that is entirely different. That being said, getting to grips with your new push reel mower will be pretty easy.

To make the most of your equipment and learn to use it properly, I have put together some top tips.

Find The Right Pace

It can be very tempting to get outside and run around the yard to get the lawn cut as quickly as possible; then you can get on with the rest of your day. However, this won’t typically yield such a good result. That being said, if you go around too slowly, it is likely that your blades will bind to the plate. You need to find a balance.

The best way to use one of these mowers is to walk at a steady pace, giving the blades a chance to cut the grass effectively.

Try Different Patterns

The beauty of a push reel lawn mower is that you are not limited in terms of how you mow the lawn. For this reason, a lot of homeowners like to experiment with different mowing patterns.

The type of grass that you have will impact how well it cuts in various directions and the best way to discover how to get the most desirable result is to try things out.

Overlap Rows

Your manual mower will deliver in terms of performance, but in order to get the most out of it, you will want to make sure that you cover the ground as much as possible. The best way to ensure that you catch any missed blades of grass is to overlap your rows.

Not only will this help to make sure that you have an even cut but it will also mean that the mower will be easier to move around as you won’t be mowing as much long grass at any one time.

Don’t Allow Your Grass To Grow Too Long

Push Reel Mowers ConclusionAlthough some of the mowers that we have looked at can handle relatively long grass, it isn’t typically a good idea to allow the lawn to get this long often. This can make it a lot more challenging to cut. Regular lawn care schedule will ensure that you get the most out of your manual push mower, it is not designed for unkept and neglected lawns.

It is best to trim your lawn at least once a week during the summer months and make sure that you do your autumn lawn maintenance before the cold weather sets in.

Conclusion

While a lot of modern landscapers like to use the latest in powered tools and equipment, it can be nice to go back to a simpler time and make the most of a push reel mower. More and more people are seeing the benefits of this type of equipment and manufacturers have brought us some viable products recently.

There are, of course, pros and cons to using these types of push reel mowers but overall, I would say that if you want a quiet mower that is efficient, provides a superior close cut and is environmentally-friendly, you can’t go far wrong with a push reel mower.

 

 

 

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