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10 Best Riding Lawn Mowers in 2020

The Best Riding Mower For The Money

Is your property a 1/2 Acre – or Larger?  If so, you know it’s a pretty big job to mow that much yard – especially if you’re using a walk-behind lawnmower. Well, you’ll be glad to know that Extra-Large lawns are where the best riding lawn mowers do their best work

Let’s face it – Riding Lawn Mowers are not exactly cheap to buy, and we know its a big investment. That’s why we have lined up what we believe are the Ten Best Riding Mowers for the Money – to help you decide which lawn tractor is the best one for your needs.

We also included our Riding Lawn Mower Buyers Guide (below) to help homeowners make a well-informed choice – before buying a riding lawnmower.

 

These extensive reviews highlight the most important details of the 10 best rated riding lawn mowers  – and if you like – you can get one shipped from Home Depot to your doorstep at no additional charge.  Yes, free-home delivery. (more about that in our Riding Mowers Near Me section – below).

 


 

The 10 Best Riding Lawn Mowers For 2020:

 


 

Editor’s Choice:  Best 42-inch Riding Mower  –   John Deere E120

 Why We Like It

John Deere is one of the best-known names in the lawn equipment industry, which is why we’ve chosen the E120 as the best riding mower in the 42-inch class. Thanks to its 20-horsepower engine, the E120 offers plenty of power. Also, the John Deere E120 mower features a range of convenience features that includes cruise control, a 10-position adjustable seat, and an easy oil change system.

Specs

  • 42-inch mower deck
  • 20-horsepower V-twin engine
  • Cast iron front axle
  • Fast, easy starting
  • Welded steel framing
  • 2-year warranty
  • hydrostatic transmission

Our Take Away

Overall, we love the John Deere E120 and believe we are entirely justified in naming it as our Editor’s Choice pick. This John Deere riding lawn mower is comfortable, well-built, and produces a fantastic cut. If you need an excellent mower for a half-acre to 1-acre lot, the E120 is our choice for best riding lawn mower 2020.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

John Deere – Editors Choice Best 42″ Riding Lawn Mower

John Deere

 


 

Runner Up:  Best 42-inch Riding Mower  –   Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro LT


Why We Like It

Next on our list of riding lawn mower reviews is the Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro LT. This mower combines a powerful 547cc engine with Cub Cadet’s IntelliPower feature, which automatically adjusts the engine’s throttle to adjust for cutting and driving conditions. The Intellipower – paired with extremely responsive steering and cruise control, this mower’s features make the XT1 Enduro LT a true winner in our eyes.

Specifications

  • 42-inch mower deck
  • 547cc engine
  • IntelliPower throttle adjustment
  • Responsive handling
  • Welded steel frame
  • 3-year warranty
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • 12 cutting heights
  • LED headlights

Our Take Away

In terms of convenience, it’s tough to beat this Cub Cadet riding mower. The IntelliPower feature is especially helpful since it automatically increases power when cutting through wet grass or in other demanding conditions. Overall, we were extremely impressed with this mower and can recommend it as an excellent runner-up to the John Deere E120.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

Cub Cadet – Runner Up Best 42″ Riding Lawn Mower

Cub Cadet 

 


 

Best Value 42-inch Riding Mower –   John Deere E100 – 42″ Mower


Why We Like It

A stepped-down cousin of the E120, the John Deere E100 is a strong option for smaller residential yards that comes in at a budget-friendly price. With its 17.5-horsepower engine, the E100 is a bit less powerful than the E120. However, you’ll still find the same quality construction and attention to detail that generations of homeowners have come to associate with the John Deere brand.

Specifications

  • 42-inch mower deck
  • 17.5-horsepower engine
  • Cast iron front axle
  • Welded steel frame
  • Fade-resistant hood
  • Manual transmission
  • 2-year warranty

Our Take Away

While the E100 doesn’t deliver the same power or the convenience of the E120’s hydrostatic transmission, there’s still a lot to like here. If you’re mowing a mid-sized residential yard and don’t need vast amounts of power on tap, you’ll find that the E100 is a good lawn tractor that will get the job done.

John Deere – Best Value 42″ Riding Mower

John Deere

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

 


 

 

 

Best “Electric Battery –  Powered Riding Mower”  – Ryobi 38″ Bagger Included:


Why We Like It

It may surprise you to learn that battery technology in the outdoor power equipment space has become so advanced that a battery can power a riding lawnmower. 

Nevertheless, the Ryobi 38-inch battery mower achieves precisely this, allowing homeowners to enjoy the low-maintenance convenience of electric power in a piece of equipment that has historically been powered exclusively by gasoline engines.

Specifications

  • 38-inch mower deck
  • 75-Ah Lithium-ION battery power
  • Mows up to 2 acres per charge
  • 12-position deck
  • Cruise control
  • LED Headlights
  • 3-year warranty
  • Bagging kit included

Our Take Away

With gasoline, oil changes, and no belts, spark plugs, air filter, or other maintenance issues to deal with, the Ryobi 38-inch battery model may just be the single most convenient mower out there. Don’t let its size fool you, though, as this mower can comfortably tackle up to two acres of land on a single battery charge. 

If you’re looking to avoid exhaust fumes or are someone who doesn’t have time to keep up with gas-powered maintenance, the highly-rated Ryobi battery-powered mower could be your best choice to consider.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

Ryobi – Best Battery-Powered Riding Mower With Bagging Kit

Ryobi

 


 

Runner Up –   Best Battery Powered Riding Mower:  Ryobi 38-inch (Without Bagging Kit)

 Why We Like It

This mower is the same as the Ryobi 38-inch model described above, but this version comes without a bagging kit included and is less expensive.

If you prefer to mulch or side discharge your grass clippings instead of bagging, this version is the best option. You will receive the same quality battery-powered mower and save some money in the process.

Specifications

  • 38-inch mower deck
  • 75-Ah Lithium-ION battery power
  • Mows up to 2 acres per charge
  • 12-position deck
  • Cruise control
  • LED Headlights
  • 3-year warranty

Our Take Away

As stated in our previous section, the Ryobi 75 Ah battery-powered mower is a standout choice for anyone who’s looking for a battery-powered lawnmower. While we prefer the bagging option, not everyone needs or even wants to bag their clippings. 

There are several other battery-powered riding mower brands now on the market, but all have less battery-power, produce less mowing per charge, and cost more than the Ryobi brands, so we chose Ryobi as the top 2 best battery powered riding mowers for our Top 10 list.

Even without the grass bagging attachment, the Ryobi 38-inch model is an amazingly powerful mower that will save you time, money, and trouble on maintenance while delivering a reliable cutting performance.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

Ryobi – Best Battery Powered Riding Mower (Without Bagging Kit)

Ryobi

 


 

Best Upgrade –  John Deere E160 V-Twin Engine – 48″ Lawn Tractor


Why We Like It

Okay, by now you’re probably getting the picture that we love John Deere. As the best upgrade choice, the E160 stands out for its 48-inch deck, 24-horsepower V-twin engine, Hydrostatic transmission, and convenient “electric” blade adjustment features. As with the E120, you’ll also find the useful 30-second oil change system on this upgraded model.

Specifications

  • 48-inch mower deck
  • 24-horsepower V-twin engine
  • Lumbar-supporting seat
  • Cruise control
  • Easy starting
  • 30-second oil change system
  • Electronic blade adjustment
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • 2-year warranty

Our Take Away

Thanks to its power, larger mowing deck, and range of convenience features, we find that the John Deere E160 is one of the best mowers for lot sizes over 2 acres large. The E160 is also a fantastic choice if you plan to use a riding lawn mower with bagger attachment.

For larger properties, areas with thick grass and tough jobs in general, and if your budget allows it – we can strongly recommend an upgrade to the E160.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

John Deere – Best Upgrade Riding Mower

John Deere

 

 


 

 

Best Small Riding Mower –   Troy-Bilt “Neighborhood” 30-Inch Lawn TractorWhy We Like It

Some homeowners find themselves in the “in-between” position of having a lawn that’s too big for a walk-behind mower but not quite big enough for a mower with a larger 42 inch mowing deck. If you’re looking for a small, sit on mower for a residential yard, the Troy-Bilt “Neighborhood” may be the very best answer. 

With a 30-inch deck and 382cc single-cylinder engine, the Neighborhood model from Troy-Bilt offers everything you’d expect from a larger riding mower but in a slightly smaller package.

Specifications

  • 30-inch mower deck
  • 382cc single-cylinder engine
  • Rear hitch capability
  • Mows in reverse
  • 6-speed transmission
  • Five cutting heights
  • 2-year warranty

Our Take Away

For yards that just aren’t big enough for a full-size rider, the Troy-Bilt Neighborhood offers an outstanding balance of capability, compact sizing, and value. To our surprise, this mower even does a reasonably good job of mowing on inclines and uneven terrain. 

If you’re looking for a small riding mower for medium-sized yards, this is the mower for you. We also recommend the Neighborhood highly for anyone that physically has a hard time with walk-behind mowers.

The Troy-Bilt Neighborhood is small enough to be driven through fence gates and is agile enough to handle a small or medium-sized yard.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

Troy-Bilt – Best 30″ Riding Lawn Mower

Troy-Bilt

 


 

Cheapest Riding Mower (42″)  –  Troy-Bilt “Pony” 

 Why We Like It

When you first look at riding mowers for sale, you may be a bit intimidated by the price tags you see. If you’re looking for a decent mower at the lowest possible price point, the Troy-Bilt Pony is a model that’s well worth the price.

With a 42-inch cutting deck and a 13.5 HP engine, the Pony provides plenty of power and capability, all at a price that almost any homeowner can reasonably afford.

Specifications

  • 42-inch mower deck
  • 439cc engine (13.5 HP)
  • Automatic headlights
  • Reliable starting
  • Anti-scalping tires
  • 7-speed transmission
  • Mow-in-reverse optional
  • 2-year warranty

Our Take Away

Even though it’s a budget option, this Troy-Bilt riding mower has a lot going for it. Smaller engine size notwithstanding, the Pony has plenty of get up and go – and will easily handle any residential lawn under 2 acres. 

Overall, the Troy-Bilt Pony riding lawn mower is an especially good option for homeowners on a tight budget, but still want or need to invest in a riding mower. If you’re looking for a top-rated riding lawn mower under $1,500 this is it.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

Troy-Bilt – Cheapest Riding Mower With 42″ Mower Deck

Troy – Bilt

 


 

 

Best Lawn Tractor with “Zero-Turn Radius” Steering – Troy-Bilt Mustang 22 HP V-Twin

 Why We Like It

Exclusive to our list of top ten ridings lawn mower is the ZERO-TURN RADIUS – Troy-Bilt Mustang. This mower combines a powerful 22- HP Kohler brand V-Twin engine with the favored dual Hydrostatic Transmission – but also includes the rare “Zero-Turn” radius steering.  Oh, and it offers zero-turn with a standard steering wheel – not “lap bars”.

While it’s not the cheapest riding mower on our list, if you have a larger budget – The Mustang is certainly one of the best to consider for nimble maneuverability and sloping yards or hills.

Specifications

  • 46-inch Twin-Blade mower deck
  • Kohler 7000 Series 22-HP Engine
  • IntelliPower throttle adjustment
  • Responsive handling
  • Heavy-duty steel frame – Lifetime frame warranty
  • 3-year warranty on engine and parts
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • Adjustable Cutting Heights
  • Cons:  No headlights (better do your mowing in the daylight)

Our Take Away

In terms of having almost every riding lawn mower feature you could wish for – the Troy-Bilt Mustang really does check the right boxes. In addition, this riding lawn mower includes DUAL hydrostatic transmission, meaning the steering wheel turns all 4 wheels, making it a great mower for Hills or Steep terrain.  Overall, we think the Troy Bilt Mustang is one of the one of the top rated zero turn mowers.

We were extremely impressed with this riding mower and can recommend it as an one of the top rated riding lawn mowers for any lot up to 2 acres large.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ AMAZON >>>

Troy-Bilt – Best Riding Mower with Zero-Turn Radius Steering

Troy-Bilt

 

 


 

Best Price Riding Mower With “Hydrostatic Drive” – Troy-Bilt Super Bronco XP

Why We Like It

Next on our list of best value riding lawn mowers is the Super Bronco XP from Troy-Bilt.   This mower offers a much better than average OHV Troy-Bilt 16.5 Hp engine with Hydrostatic transmission drive – a feature not typically found in riding mowers of this price range.

While the Bronco doesn’t include the V-Twin engine – it does offer a considerable savings over its big brother – The Mustang Riding Mower (above). Oh, and the Super Bronco XP Does have Headlights!

Specifications

  • 42-inch Twin-Blade Mower Deck
  • Deck port wash included (using garden hose)
  • Mow-In-Reverse option
  • 16.5 HP Single Cylinder engine
  • Auto-Choke
  • Responsive handling – Standard Steering Wheel
  • Great for Hills and Sloping Yards
  • 3-year warranty
  • Hydrostatic drive transmission
  • Variable Cutting Heights
  • LED headlights

Our Take Away

Founded in the U.S. in 1937, Troy-Bilt has built a solid reputation and is a highly-respected lawnmower manufacturer.  Note that the White Glove delivery service is not included for Troy-Bilt mowers, some assembly will be required by homeowner after delivery. Overall, a great mower that includes fantastic features, at an outstanding price.

SEE PRICE & DETAILS @ HOME DEPOT >>>

Troy-Bilt – Cheapest 42″ Mower with Hydrostatic Drive

Troy-Bilt

 


 

 

Riding Lawn Mowers for Sale Near Me:

If you’re interested in a particular mower featured in this article, just click any of our links and you will be directed to Home Depot dot com – where you can review more details about that riding mower, or place an order, and set up either an in-store delivery or a home-delivery – whichever is most convenient for you. 

Note: Every lawn tractor for sale in this review can be shipped directly to your home for free, through Home Depot’s dedicated trucking service. Additionally, a few brands, such as John Deere, and Toro, also include a “white-glove” delivery service. White-Glove service includes:  At home delivery, set-up, orientation, to get you on your riding mower quickly!

Note: Most riding lawn mowers are shipped from Home Depot within 7-10 business days – an exact date will be confirmed at check-out.

 


 

Frequently Asked Questions – Buying Riding Lawn Mowers:

What Is the Best Cheap Riding Lawn mower?

If you’re concerned only with price, the Troy-Bilt 30-inch Neighborhood model is the least expensive riding lawn mower you’ll find. Highly maneuverable and perfect for small to mid-sized yards, the Neighborhood offers reliable performance at a great price point. If you’re looking to balance off power and size with value, the Troy-Bilt Pony is another great option.

If you need a little more power and cutting width – second place for cheapest riding mower honors goes to the Troy-Bilt “Pony” which offers a 42″ mowing deck and 13.5 Hp engine.

What Is the Best Riding Lawn mower for 1 Acre?

For 1 acre or less, we’d recommend the John Deere E120 or Cub Cadet XT1. Both of these products are top-rated riding mowers – and feature 42-inch mowing decks, hydrostatic transmissions, strong brand reputation, dependable warranty, great construction quality; with the Cub Cadet coming in a little less expensive.

Where Do You Get a Riding Lawnmower Serviced?

With larger brands like John Deere, Toro, Cub Cadet, and Troy-Bilt, you can easily have your lawn mower serviced at most outdoor power equipment dealerships.

However, If you own a John Deere or Toro, you can also take your mower to one of the company’s large network of brand-authorized dealerships – approved to service lawn tractors. For Toro lawn mower’s, you can also go to a member of the company’s dealer network, which includes most ACE Hardware stores, for service and repair.

Who Makes the Best Riding Mower

In our opinion, the top 3 riding mower brands for homeowners are John Deere, Toro, and Cub Cadet. It’s important to note, however, that the best riding mower for you will depend on your needs, preferences, and budget. 

For instance, Troy-Bilt built in the U.S.A and founded in 1937, is an outstanding lawn mower company with years of service and dependability, who happen to build a more affordable lawnmower line.

Be sure to take the size and slope of your yard, the price you’re willing to pay, and the amount of maintenance you’re ready to perform into consideration – before selecting the mower that best suits your needs.

 

Riding Lawn Mower Buyers Guide

Grass grows fast and Is there anything worse on a super hot day, than spending hours pushing a lawnmower around the yard?  Even with a self-propelled mower it’s a workout.

The solution: offering much higher speeds and cutting paths than walk-behind mowers, the best riding lawn mowers featured today, will make cutting your lawn a quick, efficient – and dare we say – “fun job”.

Our riding lawn mower buyers guide below – explains the most important features to consider, when buying a riding mower:

Power

The amount of power put out by a mower’s engine is one of the most important considerations when selecting your riding mower. More power allows a mower to deal with uphill slopes easily, move at faster speeds, and cut through wet or especially thick grass. 

The V-twin type engine typically boasts higher power ratings than single-cylinder engines, which is why you’ll typically see them included on higher-priced riding mowers.

On the other hand, don’t forget to take a peek at the very popular Battery-Powered models above from Ryobi. With no spark plugs, gas, oil, or belts to worry about – they are gaining popularity fast with homeowners who have 2 acres or less to mow.

Transmission 

Most riding mowers feature either a manual or hydrostatic transmission. Hydrostatic transmissions utilize a fluid system to seamlessly shift between gears, while manual transmissions require the use of a lever to change gears manually. 

Manual transmissions are incredibly dependable, but most high-end mowers these days offer hydrostatic transmissions as a more user-friendly feature.

Deck Size

As you may have noticed, a 42-inch mower deck is a standard for most of the riding lawn mowers on this list. 42-inch mowing decks work best on yards up to 2 acres. 

If you have more than 2 acres to mow, we strongly recommend stepping up to either a 48-inch or 54-inch model, such as the John Deere E160 listed under our Best Upgrade category.

Cutting Options

The majority of riding lawn mowers can mow using three different cutting options; using the side discharge, mulching, and bagging. 

Most mowers come set up to do side discharge and mulching, but require the separate purchase of a bagging attachment to allow you to bag your grass clippings.

The Ryobi 38″ battery-powered riding mowers in our reviews, can be purchased with our without the grass bagging attachment.

Home Depot Protection Plan

While we’re generally not big fans of warranty or service plans, we totally think the Home Depot Protection Plan is definitely worth considering.  Especially when you’re buying a big ticket item like a lawn mower, or other expensive lawn mower equipment.

Their Protection Plan offers 24/7 customer phone support (yes a real live person), No Deductibles/No Fees, and best of all a “Repair it – or Replace It” promise.  Here is a brief rundown of the Home Depot Protection Plan. If you want to include it, simply add protection plan at “checkout” when ordering online.

 

Wrapping Up

As you can see, if you’re in the market for a great riding lawn mower, there are some pretty fantastic riding mower options on the market. 

The John Deere E120 comes in as our top choice for the best riding mower 2020, with the Enduro LT From Cub Cadet landing as a close runner up, and finally the John Deere E100 was our selection for the best value in the standard 42-inch mower deck category.

Although these riding mowers represent our top three picks overall, the best lawn tractor for you may be one of the other models on this list. 

The best pick for you will depend on your yard size, terrain, and several other factors, but the mowers on this list should give you a great starting point in your search.

(Disclosure:  Best Home Gear is an authorized Home Depot Affiliate (we are not sponsored, but do make a small fee if you choose to buy at Home Depot through one of our links).  Home Depot is one of the largest nationwide distributors for riding lawn mowers in the United States – With 2,285 current store locations – there’s probably a Home Depot near you. That service & availability, coupled with a great reputation as a home improvement supplier – is why we’re proud to “affiliate” with Home Depot).

 

Thanks again for visiting Best Home Gear – and Please don’t hesitate to Leave us a Comment or Suggestion Below!

 

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Kevin

As a Homeowner, Builder, and Property Developer/Manager for 30+ years, I’ve worn a lot of “different hats”, and In that capacity, owned or used about every tool or piece of home equipment one can think of. Managing property in Michigan, Arizona, and Florida, also allows us to test many of the products we review firsthand, and in vastly different climates and conditions. Our goal at BestHomeGear.Com is to share the first-hand experience by providing exceptional Home & Garden Techniques, Product Reviews, and useful DIY Guides for our faithful readers - Homeowners like you. We trust you will find BestHomeGear.Com very informative - and extremely helpful.

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