5 Best Riding Lawn Mowers for Hills and Steep Terrain [ 2020 Reviews ]

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It is tiring work to push mowers all over your yard to remove grass. Especially for the people who own large acres of land, it requires a lot of physical work. Nobody wants to move around with mowers in a dreadful heat of the sun. Furthermore, it takes a lot of time to mow an entire land. So if you are a person who doesn’t like the idea of investing more time in some petty task like mowing grass, it’s time to upgrade from push mowers to some of the best riding lawn mowers for hills

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Riding mowers are more efficient than hand mowers. As its name suggests riding mowers are powered mowers that don’t require manual force to push around. There are a lot of merits in riding mowers compared to push mowers. One of them is they don’t require much of a physical effort. Riding mowers are most suitable if you have acres of grass to cut. Since riding mowers have bigger decks they can cut comparatively more grass. This, as a result, reduces the time required for the mowing of the grass. 

While purchasing a riding lawn mower, you will have to spend a good sum of money. Compared to push mowers, there are a lot of things to consider for riding mowers. Seating arrangement, engine, deck size, horsepower and similar factors must be studied before getting a riding mower. But we’ve got that work cut out for you. We’ve researched some of the best lawn mowers for hills and narrowed down our list to 5 best of them. These are alpha riding mowers and are capable of cutting down grass in your steep terrain. Before we discuss these riding mowers, let’s take a look at some factors that make them a better option.

Why should you use a Riding Lawnmower?

If you are moving to ride mowers, it is obvious that this question might pop up in your head. Let’s clear your doubts and see why you must opt for these mowers.

  • Can Mow Large Area

One of the major advantages of riding mowers is that they can mow down much larger areas compared to push mowers. The helping factor for this is its deck which is larger than a standard push mower. This feature reduces the amount of time you need to invest in mowing. 

  • No Physical Effort
riding lawn mower

You don’t need to push riding mowers like push mowers. So there isn’t any involvement of physical activity in any sense. All you have to do is sit on it and the mower will do the job of mowing the grass.

  • Less Time, More Mowing

Since riding mowers are powered they can mow grass at a much faster rate. This ultimately results in a reduction in mowing time compared to conventional mowers. Also since these mowers can move faster, your task can be completed in less time. 

  • Easy to Work

There aren’t any complicated controls in riding mowers. It is fairly simple to use.

  • Uniform mowing

Since moving isn’t manual but powered in riding mowers. The cutting of grass is uniform.

Are Riding Lawn Mowers For Hills Dangerous?

riding lawn mower safety

There are some factors that influence whether these mowers are safe to use in hill areas, let’s look at them.

  • Stability of Mower

Mowers should be stable in order to mow the grass on hills or steep terrain. A fair amount of sturdiness and grip should be induced in it so that it doesn’t fail. If your mower is stable enough, then only you should use it in the hills.

  • Steepness of Hill

It is recommended to use riding mowers in slightly steeper hills. If you go on using a mower on a much steeper hill then it can end up falling off. This can lead to grave injuries or even casualties. 

  • Direction

For mowing grass on a hill, you should follow an up and down pattern. In this pattern, you ride the mower uniformly in an upward direction and then in a downward direction. If you ride in a cross direction then the mower can loose its stability. 

The Best Riding Lawn Mowers for Hills Reviews

1. Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Riding Lawn Mower

To start off we have a riding mower from Troy-bilt which is one of the best riding lawn mowers for steep hills. This is a well-balanced lawnmower that excels in all sections.

It comes up with a six-speed gearbox that allows you to continuously change the gears depending on the terrain. With this many options, it becomes easier to mow the grass on uneven surfaces. The body of the mower is made from steel which makes it pretty tough and offers a considerable amount of weight. All the parts are in-built and are kept within it. It uses a single-cylinder Troy-Bilt OHV engine which is capable of achieving a top speed of 7km/hr.

This mower by Troy-Bilt is comparatively smaller in size which enables its easy storage. Furthermore, due to the smaller size, manoeuvring is a lot easier. With 13 inch wheels, it can turn about 18-inch of the radius. For seating, there is a padded seat which is comfortable even at higher speeds.

For its 30-inch deck, there are 5 different adjustable settings. All settings offer uniform and clean cuts with good consistency. The setting should be selected by considering the height of the grass.

  • What We Like
  • Its price is comparatively less for a riding lawnmower.
  • Its steel body offers good durability.
  • Its manoeuvrability and precision.
  • The little requirement of maintenance.
  • What We Don't Like
  • It is not suitable for highly steep slopes.

Check the latest price on Amazon!

2. Husqvarna Continuously Variable Transmission Riding Mower

If we are talking about the best self-propelled lawn mower for hills then we can’t really miss out mowers from Husqvarna. This time we have a reliable riding mower from Husqvarna that has continuously variable transmission.

This mower consists of a pedal-operated hydrostatic transmission system. By pressing the pedal you can continuously vary the speed of your mower. This eliminates the nuisances of shifting gears and ensures hassle-free transmission. 

The mower features one cutting blade which is capable of cutting grass up to 4 inches. Grass can be mowed in 6 steps. Anti-scalping wheels are used in this riding mower. These wheels provide enough clearance to ensure that your mower or terrain doesn’t get damaged. The wheels can allow 16 inches of turning radius enabling you to navigate in tighter spaces. The blades cut grass evenly even on uneven surfaces.

For ease of starting it uses a key ignition system deviating from the traditional pull cord system. With this, no physical effort is required to start a mower and even aged people can use it. 

  • What We Like
  • Its pedal-operated speed control.
  • Its adjustable seat and deluxe steering wheel.
  • Its air induction mowing technology offers consistency in the cutting of grass.
  • Ability to add attachments and accessories.
  • Its key starts the ignition.
  • What We Don't Like
  • Its difficulty in maintenance.

Check the latest price on Amazon!

3. Troy-Bilt Pony 42X Riding Mower

This is another prospect from Troy-Bilt, which happens to be one of the best lawn mowers for hills. With its 42 inch deck, it is capable of cutting grass in the least amount of time by covering more area.

It is mostly suitable for residential use; however with its engine of 547cc, there won’t be much difficulty in mowing grass in hill areas. The cutting deck of 42 inches is large enough to carry out mowing in one go. This is fairly large and can save a lot of your time by taking out larger areas of grass.

It is capable of giving 18 inches of turning radius which allows you to freely move around terrain. With this turning radius, you can manoeuvre the mower even in the smallest of areas. This essentially helps you in covering all areas of your land. 

This mower utilizes a 7-speed transmission system, offering variety in speed. The gear ratios in this are good enough to climb on the steep hills and mow down the grass. 

It has a tough built and sturdy body, making it durable for most of the terrains. With the front steel axle, it survives for more time without maintenance.  

  • What We Like
  • Its integrated deck washing system.
  • Its side discharge deck is 54 inch in size.
  • Its massive 42 inches deck.
  • Its electric start system.
  • What We Don't Like
  • Some problems in transmission shifter.

Check the latest price on Amazon!

4. Husqvarna 42inch Hydrostatic Riding Mower

Smaller riding mowers are trendy and Husqvarna yet again provides one of those in the form of its 42inch Hydrostatic riding mower. This is without a doubt one of the best riding lawn mowers for hills.

This mower uses an air induction system for lifting off the grass for better cuts. As the grass is lifted up the 42 inches stamped steel deck performs a thorough job of cutting down grass. There are four height settings that can be adjusted as per your convenience. They vary from 1.5 inches to 4 inches. You can either side discharge cut grass or mulch it via mulching attachment.

The mower equips the key ignition system and eliminates the need for choke start. For better comfort, it features a 13-inch ergonomic vinyl seat which absolutely gives you a bike-like feel. The steering wheel too offers good grip to control direction without any hitches. 

For the cleaning and maintenance of the deck, you can use the deck-wash port and attach it to your hose. This will take out all clippings, dirt and debris out of the system. Furthermore, you can keep a good track of scheduled maintenance with an electrical hour meter equipped on its dashboard.

  • What We Like
  • Its ease of handling.
  • Its 18.5 HP Engine
  • Its durability
  • Variety in speeds.
  • What We Don't Like
  • Its difficulty to manoeuvre in smaller lands.

Check the latest price on Amazon!

5. Husqvarna 26HP Kohler Lawn Tractor

As one of the best riding lawn mowers for hills, this mower by Husqvarna can be a great upgrade option to your push mower. 

It features a 26HP Kohler 7000 series V-Twin OHV Engine that offers enough torque to climb most of the steep hills. It comes up with an electric start so there aren’t any annoyances of starting the machine with pull rope. 

The cruise control in this is pedal operated. With pedals, you can control speed as well as direction. It just gives you a similar feeling of cruising like cars. For sitting arrangement, it accompanies the 18-inch seat that comes with an armrest, giving you a good amount of comfort. Premium rubber tires are used in this for better stability and grip.

The mower uses a 54-inch 3-bladed mower deck made with 10-gauge Clear Cut steel design. This deck is considerably larger in size and ideal for bigger lawns. You can adjust height setting in 6 levels between 1.5 to 4 inches. Cuts are produced uniform and consistent, courtesy of air induction technology that helps in drawing out grass. This also to some extent reduces clumping of grass. 

  • What We Like
  • Its powerful 26 HP engine.
  • It's a comfortable seat with an armrest.
  • Its hydrostatic transmission system.
  • Its 54-inch deck takes care of medium or large size lawns.
  • What We Don't Like
  • The engine gets hot in continuous mowing.

Check the latest price on Amazon!

Factors to Consider While Buying Lawn Mowers For Hills – The Buyer’s Guide

best lawn mower for hills
  • Yard

The type of your yard influences the type of mower you are going to use. You have to examine your yard thoroughly before purchasing a mower. The steepness of your yard will determine the power of your mower. 

  • Engine

A powerful engine is essential to climb the hill while mowing. While moving upwards, a lot of force is required and for that, the engine should have sufficient power. Also, you should ensure that the engine has good durability or else you will have to face frequent maintenance problems.

  • Weight

The grip is important when mowing on hills. For a better grip of the mower, its weight should be higher. But more the weight, more the power required for the engine to propel the mower. So there should be a proper balance between weight and power. You have to select a mower that fulfils both of these requirements.

  • Size

Riding mowers come in small as well as large size with both having their own pros and cons. Larger mowers can cut more grass in less time but they are expensive. Furthermore, turning of large mowers is fairly difficult. On the other hand, smaller mowers offer great manoeuvrability but their cutting efficiency is low.

  • Comfort and Safety

Riding mowers have more probability of causing injuries than push mowers. That’s why they should be equipped with proper safety features. Riding Mowers should have an arrangement of seat belts to prevent falling off. Also, the seat should be comfortable enough as you are going to be sitting for quite some time as you mow. 

Safety Tips With Riding Lawn Mowers For Hills

riding lawn mower safety tips
  • Always drive in an upward and downward direction. Never drive in a cross direction as it may lead to falling off of a mower and result in grave injuries.
  • Always try to ride your mower in a forward direction and keep the use of backward riding minimal. You can perform better manoeuvre while riding forward, also you might hit somebody if you ride backwards. 
  • Don’t turn on the blade when you are riding on roads or paved paths. Blades should only be used on grassy surfaces.
  • Riding mowers are heavy so take proper measures in their storage. If you have a garage then store it there, otherwise, keep it over a strong surface.
  • Don’t let your kids or pets near riding mowers. As they have automatic controls, kids can accidentally turn the mower on.
  • Always keep the key on you and never leave it on the ignition socket. 
  • Take all rocks, objects or garbage out of the lawn before starting mowing. These things can cause severe damage to the blade that’s why you should thoroughly inspect the lawn beforehand. 
  • You should always wear safety goggles whenever using a riding mower.
  • Whenever starting the mower, always keep it outside of the lawn. In any instance, if a big explosion were to happen it would occur outside of the lawn, thus preventing the major spread of fire. 
  • Carry out maintenance on fixed intervals.
  • Frequently wash the deck with arrangements provided in the riding mower.
  • Assemble all parts as per instruction manual.
  • Before mowing on hills and steep surfaces, practice riding the mower on flat surfaces.
  • Don does not mow for a longer period of time or the engine might heat up.

Riding Lawn Mowers For Hills FAQ’s

  • Q1) Why should I use riding mowers on hills instead of push mowers?

As riding mowers are self-propelled, they don’t require any physical effort. Climbing hills with push mowers will require a lot of effort, that’s why it is advisable to use riding mowers in hill areas.

  • Q2) How to carry out maintenance of Riding mowers?

For cleaning the deck you can use a hose or integrated cleaning system to take out dirt and grass clips. Maintenance of parts should be done as per given schedule.

  • Q3) Why are riding mowers more expensive?

Since riding mowers have more complicated parts, its cost is more than conventional mowers.

Final Verdict

So these are some of the finest riding mowers that you can purchase right now. All of them have extravagant features and each of them has their own speciality. While you can select anyone from the list, none of them will disappoint you in any way. At the end of the day, it is up to you which mower to select as per your requirements. 

Both Troy-Bilt and Husqvarna produce some commendable riding mowers and that can be seen from our list. Before purchasing a mower, you should inspect the surface that you are going to mow and keep factors discussed in mind. In the end, you will end up with a winner mower.

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