The Best Lawn Mower Australia - The Ultimate Review

Our #1 PICK 

Masport BWM AL191 Lawn Mower

~ The Best Value for Money ~

Masport BWM AL191 Lawn Mower
  • 190cc engine
  • 4-stroke engine
  • Heavy-duty, rust-resistant aluminium chassis
  • 48.5 cm cutting width
  • 11 height levels

Whether you’re buying your first lawn mower or upgrading to a new model, making the right choice can be difficult.

Should you get a petrol or electric lawn mower? How important is the cutting diameter? Which mower has the lowest emissions?

This article will explain how mowers work, what features they offer and how to choose the right one for your lawn. Then we give you a hit-list of the nine best lawn mowers in Australia.


Types of Mowers

Before we dig deeper, it’s important to understand the two different types of lawn mowers available in the Australian market: rotary and reel mowers.

Rotary Mowers

Most people are familiar with the rotary lawn mower. It’s what you find in most Australian backyards. These mowers have blades that rotate on a vertical axis (hence the name), and a long deck that allows for wide coverage. While rotary cutting is a popular choice, its mechanism can tear or chop the grass rather than slice it cleanly, which can result in a damaged or uneven lawn – particularly if your blades are blunt or clogged.

Rotary mowers are often powered by petrol and come in two-stroke and four-stroke engines. A two-stroke engine tends to be lighter, cheaper and uses a mix of oil and fuel to lubricate the engine, which makes them easy to operate and a little smoky.

The four-stroke engine is heavier, more expensive and keeps the fuel in separate chambers. This results in long-lasting power, better fuel efficiency and fewer emissions. Interestingly, two-stroke engines were banned in Australia in 2017 due to their toxic emissions [1], so you are unlikely to find them these days, so four-stroke remains the engine of choice.

Even though four-stroke engines have lower emissions, they still produce noise and fumes, which is why consumers are turning to corded or battery-operated rotary mowers. The corded models can vary in length, but most are long enough to service a small to medium lawn. Even the best battery lawn mower models can be limited by their runtime, which can be anywhere between 30 and 90 minutes. But recent innovations – and demand for climate-friendly options – have seen an increase in these products.

PRO TIP: According to CHOICE magazine’s Michael Steen, “improvements in cutting performance and battery life have been significant, and battery-powered options are now well worth a look” [2]

Reel Mowers

Reel mowers are not as popular as rotary mowers, but professional gardeners and groundskeepers swear by them. The blades cut on a horizontal axis, like scissors, which can result in a shorter, neater cut. This method seals the grass blade, which helps retain moisture and leaves you with a healthier-looking lawn. This is why bowling greens and cricket pitches look so good!

The basic model in this category is the manual reel mower, which was popular right up until the 1960s. It was a manually driven mower with five to twelve blades. While it got the job done, it was difficult to push, and repeated mowing was required to maintain the grass’s length. Despite these limitations, manual reel mowers are still available and provide a budget option for small lawns or climate-conscious gardeners.

For broader applications, there are petrol, battery-operated and electric lawn mowers, also known as cylinder mowers, which make handling easier. Many have rollers to prevent wheel tracks, and they tend to be quieter and more fuel-efficient than rotary mowers.

And while there are some dedicated manufacturers of high-performing reel mowers, most models can be too expensive for the domestic market. For that reason, this guide will focus on rotary mowers.


How to Choose the Best Mower

Now that you know the basics, here are four key factors you should consider before making a purchase.

Size of Your Lawn

Take a look at your garden. Is it small, medium or large? Small lawns or grassy patches can be managed with an entry-level mower. This could include a budget-friendly manual reel mower or an electric mower. All are light, low-noise and pollution-free, which are great for gardeners who are environmentally conscious or don’t want to annoy the neighbours.

If you have a large or steep lawn, mowing can be an effort, which is why a self-propelled mower is recommended. All you have to do is walk behind the mower and steer it in the right direction. For really big gardens, you might consider a ride-on mower. This will take the weight off your feet and allow you to mow at your own pace.

Grass Type

Do you know what kind of grass you have? If you’ve got Buffalo or Kikuyu, which looks best at 30–50 mm, a petrol-powered rotary mower will cut high and give you good results. If you’ve got Couch, which looks best at 20–40 mm, a cylinder mower will give you that low, neat finish – just like a bowling green!

Ease-of-Use

The ease with which a mower can be handled is often overlooked. If you’re fit and strong, you probably won’t break a sweat with a push lawn mower. You might even enjoy the exertion. For those who want to make light work of mowing, electric or battery-powered options will be easier to manage. They have light frames, quick-start buttons and adjustable handles to make mowing a breeze.

If you want to enjoy the luxury of doing nothing all, you might consider self-propelled or even robotic mowers. With the latter, all you do is program the mower and put up your feet. If you don’t mind the high price tag, these can be timesavers.

Budget

Mowers come in a range of prices and it’s hard to know if you’re getting value for money. A good rule of thumb is to spend according to your requirements and budget. If you’ve got a small space, a basic electric mower will do the trick. If you’ve got a sprawling garden, invest in a self-propelled lawn mower that’ll save you time and effort.

Lastly, don’t forget to check the warranty. Some manufacturers are generous, while others only offer a 12-month warranty. This can give you a good idea of the quality of mower. Lawn mower repairs can be expensive, so the longer the warranty the better.


Best Lawn Mowers in Australia Reviewed

Are you ready to take your lawn to the next level? Here is our list of the nine best lawn mowers you can buy in Australia.

#1: Best Overall Lawn Mower: Masport BWM AL191 Lawn Mower

Masport BWM AL191 Lawn Mower
  • 190cc engine
  • 4-stroke engine
  • Heavy-duty, rust-resistant aluminium chassis
  • 48.5 cm cutting width
  • 11 height levels

When it comes to features, the Masport MWM AL191 comes up trumps. To begin with, it has a whopping 11 height levels, which is unprecedented in our list. This provides ample flexibility if you’ve got different grass types or you’re fastidious about lawn length. The cutting deck is 48.5 cm wide and contains four blades, which allows for smooth and fast cutting – a boon when you’ve got a big lawn.

Another drawcard is Masport’s Dual Mozone function. This is a blade that extends beyond the wheel and allows you to mow close to kerbs and edges – and it’s available on both sides.

That means no more edge trimming! This will allow you spend less time on your lawn and more time with your family.

When it comes to ease-of-use, the Masport MWM AL19 has a quick-start button that gets you moving straight away, and an adjustable handlebar with PVC grip that makes handling a breeze. If you’ve got difficult terrain (let’s face it, most blocks aren’t flat), the rust-resistant aluminium chassis and cast alloy wheels are more than up to the task.

One of the major selling points of this mower would have to be the Briggs and Stratton 190cc engine. This brings power that can handle both commercial and domestic settings. But the best thing about this model is the 5-year domestic warranty, which tops most of the other brands.

There’s no doubt that this is one of the best push lawn mowers your money can buy. In fact, Canstar Blue voted Masport the best lawn mower brand in Australia in 2020:

PRO TIP: ‘Masport was rated five stars for performance & reliability, ease-of-use, quality of grass cut, design, maintenance & servicing, value for money and overall satisfaction.’ [3]

What we liked: 

  • Powerful engine
  • Flexible cutting heights
  • Can handle all conditions
  • 5-year domestic warranty
  • Cut, catch and mulch capability

What we didn't like: 

  • More noise than electric or manual mowers

Baumr-AG 720SX 17 Inch 139cc 4-Stroke Petrol Lawn Mower
  • 4-stroke engine
  • 7 cutting heights
  • 41cm cutting length
  • Oversized wheels

If you’re looking for an entry-level petrol mower at an affordable price, you can’t go past the Baumr AG 720SX. It offers some of the best features of high-end mowers, including a powerful engine, a double-tooth blade, flexible cutting heights and a wide cutting deck – all of which make for a show-stopping lawn.

While it may not offer propulsion or mulching options, it’s lighter than most petrol models and has adjustable handles, making it easy to manoeuvre and store. Its 17cm wheels are bigger than most and designed to handle long or bumpy lawns. It’s even got a handy dipstick for easy oil checks. Ideal for the novice or budget-conscious gardener who wants power, ease and flexibility.

What we liked: 

  • Compact
  • Easy one-pull start
  • Lightweight (21 kg)
  • 45L grass catcher

What we didn't like: 

  • No mulching or cutting discharge
  • Catcher could be bigger
  • 1-year warranty

#3: Best Value for Money: Giantz Cordless Electric Mower

Giantz Cordless Electric Mower
  • 34cm cutting width
  • 40-volt battery
  • 6 cutting heights
  • Lightweight (12.5 kg)

This compact mower by Giantz gives you the power of a petrol mower at a fraction of the price. With easy push-button start and fully adjustable handles, it’s a breeze to use, even for first-timers. Its 30cm cutting width and six height adjustments provide fast and flexible cutting, and you have the option of using the 30L catcher bag or rear discharge to mulch your lawn.

The mower comes with two 20-volt batteries and a charger – and there’s even a battery-life indicator so you know how long you’ve got left. Charging only takes an hour, and while this may be inconvenient for some, others may welcome the break. At this size, the Giantz Cordless Electric Mower is best for owners of small gardens who want great mowing results without the noise or fumes.

What we liked: 

  • Low noise
  • No emissions
  • Easy to steer
  • Foldable handles for easy storage

What we didn't like: 

  • Run time is 30min
  • Recharge takes about an hour
  • Not suitable for large lawns
  • 1-year warranty

#4: Best Manual Lawn Mower: Bosch Manual Garden Lawn Mower AHM 38G

Bosch Manual Garden Lawn Mower AHM 38G
  • 5-blade cylinder
  • 38 cm cutting width
  • 25L grass box
  • Lightweight (7.5 kg)

If you’ve got a small lawn, a manual mower provides a fast, affordable and emission-free solution for your mowing needs. This model is quick to assemble and easy to use. No cords, fuel or battery chargers needed.

Just attach the handle, adjust the height and you’re ready to go. It’s also lightweight, so anyone can move it or stow it with ease. And the reel cutting mechanism gives you an immaculate cut without damaging the grass blade. That’s probably why lawn mower reviews sing its praises!

As with all manual reel mowers, your grass needs to be short for it to work effectively. If you keep on top of your garden maintenance, this mower will work like a dream. It gives you a clean, precise cut without ripping out the grass. The only caveat is that you have to use it regularly to keep the grass at the optimum height for mowing.

This model also comes with a plastic grass box attachment that can hold up to 25L, so you can spend more time mowing and less time emptying the box. Perfect for gardeners who want an entry-level mower that saves money and provides a professionally cut lawn.   

What we liked: 

  • Easy to use
  • Fast assembly
  • Neat cut
  • Great value
  • 2-year warranty

What we didn't like: 

  • Long grass is hard to cut
  • Grass box can sometimes detach

#5: Best Electric Lawn Mower: Bosch Lawn Mower Arm 37

Bosch Lawn Mower Arm 37
  • 1400-watt power
  • 37cm cutting diameter
  • Medium weight (35 kg)
  • 5 height settings
  • 40L grass box

This Bosch electric mower ticks all the boxes. With its long 10m power cord, you won’t need extension cords while mowing, and its 1400-watt motor gives you the oomph to tackle long or unruly lawns.

But it’s surprisingly lightweight, coming in at 35 kg, with Ergoflex handles that are designed to minimise strain in your arms and back. It also has a double-folding handle and stackable grass box to makes it easy to store.

As for cutting power, it's almost as good as a petrol mower with five height settings for versatility, a cutting diameter of 37cm, and grass combs that eliminate the need for a lawn edger.

And while corded mowers are less popular than their cordless models, you get the job done sooner because you’re not running back and forth recharging batteries. All in all, this is a powerful, fuss-free and budget-friendly mower for the medium-sized garden.

What we liked: 

  • Easy to store
  • Flexible settings
  • Long cord
  • Ergonomic handles
  • Low noise
  • 2-year warranty

What we didn't like: 

  • Long cord can get in the way
  • May struggle with long grass
  • Plastic casings can feel flimsy

#6: Best Battery Lawn Mower: Ryobi One+ 18V 4.0Ah 36cm Lawn Mower Kit

Ryobi One+ 18V 4.0Ah 36cm Lawn Mower Kit
  • 18-volt motor
  • 4.0Ah battery
  • 36cm cutting length
  • 5 height levels

There’s no denying that Ryobi has a solid reputation when it comes to power tools, and their lawn mowers are no exception. This attractive mower kit provides five height levels for flexible mowing and easy-fold handles for quick storage. It’s lightweight, handles slopes well and provides a professional cut every time. Some reviewers reported that it was quieter than most electric mowers.

The only negative would have to be the 30 minutes of running time. It’s shorter than other battery-powered mowers and may only suit small gardens. But according to a recent report, battery-operated garden equipment is expected to rise in the next five years due to the demand for sustainable gardening solutions [4], so for many, the benefits may well outweigh the drawbacks.

But the key selling points of this Ryobi mower are the battery and charger, which are compatible with more than 100 indoor and outdoor tools. This could save you space – and thousands of dollars in the long run.

And unlike other electric or petrol-driven mowers, this mower provides a six-year warranty for tools and a three-year warranty for battery and charger replacement. That makes it the best warranty deal on our list!

What we liked: 

  • Lightweight (14 kg)
  • Low noise
  • Emission-free
  • 6-year warranty for tools and 3-year warranty for battery and charger

What we didn't like: 

  • 30 min run time
  • 2-hour charge time
  • No discharge or mulcher

Giantz Lawn Mower 4-Stroke 19‘’ Petrol Powered Push Lawnmower 175cc 4-in-1
  • Four-wing blade
  • Steel deck
  • 4-stroke engine
  • 60L catcher bag
  • Adjustable handles

If you want power, the Giantz Lawn Mower 4-Stroke Petrol Powered Push Lawn Mower brings it in spades! It’s mammoth 48cm cutting deck is one of the largest we’ve seen, which means you’ll finish mowing in a fraction of the time, and the eight height settings are sure to meet all of your landscaping needs. But despite this power and flexibility, this mower is easy to handle, and its oversized wheels mean that it can tackle overgrown gardens and slopes.

And don’t worry about emptying that catch bag. It’s a whopping 60L, which will provide ample space for your clippings until your done. Alternatively, you can use the discharge chutes to mulch your lawn as you go.

Giantz hasn’t forgotten about ergonomics, either. The handle is soft-grip and can be adjusted to your height for easy handling. With fast- pull start and Euro V emission standard [3], this is a powerful, low-polluting and affordable petrol mower for medium-sized gardens.

What we liked: 

  • Large cutting deck
  • 8 height settings
  • Ergonomic handles
  • Oversized wheels for easy handling
  • Catcher bag and mulching options

What we didn't like: 

  • Rear discharge may clog up
  • One-year warranty
  • Noisier than electric- or battery-powered options

PowerBlade Lawn Mower 20-Inch 225 cc Petrol Self-Propelled
  • 225cc engine
  • 4-stroke engine
  • 51 cm cutting width
  • 7 height adjustments
  • 4 swing blades
  • 65-litre catcher

Once you use a self-propelled mower, there’s no going back! This PowerBlade lawn mower is big on power and small on effort. No pushing or heaving or difficult pull starts. To bring the air-cooled engine to life, all you have to do is press a button and gently steer. The 225cc engine will do all the work for you.

You also have the option of choosing seven height adjustments to suit your lawn type and conditions, and with its generous 51cm cutting width, it’ll slice through that turf in a jiffy. And don’t worry, the four cross-cut swing blades will ensure you get a professional cut every time. 

If that wasn’t enough, you have the option of catching, mulching or discharging the cuttings from the side or rear. Whatever works for you! You can even watch the magic happen as you sip a cool beverage from the integrated drink holders. That’s right. Drink holders. After all, gardening can stir up a raging thirst!

Boosted with oversized wheels and a steel bumper bar (for slopes and rough terrain), this is a powerful and affordable mower for gardeners who want to achieve maximum impact for minimum effort. If you’re looking for the best lawn mower under $500 in Australia, this is it!

What we liked: 

  • Easy start
  • Easy to steer
  • Suitable for tough or tall grass
  • Suitable for uneven terrain
  • Affordable
  • Oversized wheels

What we didn't like: 

  • 1-year warranty
  • Noisier than electric or battery-operated mowers

#9: Best Robotic Lawn Mower: GARDENA 4069 R80Li Robotic Lawn Mower

GARDENA 4069 R80Li Robotic Lawnmower
  • Compact size (61 x 40.6 x 20.3 cm)
  • Lightweight (7.7 kg)
  • Only 58 decibels
  • Powerful 18-volt rechargeable lithium-ion battery

If you don’t want to fuss with fuel, batteries or tangled cords, a robotic mower might be just what you’re after. Suitable for small to medium gardens, it’s completely hands-free and simple to use. Just program the robot, set up the boundary wire (to avoid damaging your flower beds), and let it do its thing.

It can cover 45 square metres in 60 minutes, and while a propelled mower needs to be charged by humans, the Gardena 4069 R80Li returns to its charging station and can be ready to go again in just 50 minutes.

So, what is the cutting quality like? The Gardena 4069 R80Li won’t disappoint. It can give you a neat and even look with no wheel tracks. You can even adjust the cutting height from 2cm to 5cm to adapt to your preferences.

Cuttings will be jettisoned into the soil, so you won’t see any clumps. What’s more, it can handle an incline of 25 per cent, which is great for uneven lawns. However, if the surface is steeper or rough, the robot might lose traction.

Other handy features include a lift and tilt sensor that cuts the motor and averts injury, and an alarm system that deters theft or unauthorised use. Overall, this is an effective, quiet, low-maintenance option for gardeners who have a bigger budget and want to ‘out-source’ their mowing.

What we liked: 

  • Anti-theft protection
  • Low noise
  • Great cutting results
  • Emission-free
  • Easy to use and maintain

What we didn't like: 

  • Loses traction on steep lawns
  • Moves slowly
  • No remote control
  • Doesn’t cut right to the edge
  • More expensive than traditional mowers

The Verdict:  

Overall, if you want power, flexibility and a warranty that can’t be beaten, the Masport BWM AL191 is your mower. Powered by petrol and a heavy-duty engine, it can tackle tough, uneven terrain and still give you an immaculate finish.

And even though it’s a little pricier than other mowers, it’s made from high-quality parts that will last a lifetime. However, if you want a mower that’s easy on your budget – and the environment – you can’t go past the Bosch Arm 37 electric lawn mower. With its 10m cord and 1400W motor, you won’t have to worry about stopping to recharge, and it should give you coverage for a medium-sized garden.

FAQ

1. How often should you mow your lawn?

Lawns tend to grow faster in summer, so you might find yourself mowing it every week or fortnight. In winter, this might drop down to once a month. According to a survey conducted by Jim’s Mowing franchise in 2018, only 37% of Australian’s mow their lawn once a month, while 16.7% mow it less than once a month [5]. If you’ve got a Couch lawn, this might not be enough. Short and frequent cuts will keep it healthy and neat.

2. What should you do if your grass is too tall?

If your lawn is at knee height or higher, it’s best to cut it in stages with a trimmer. Be careful when you do this because there might be animals, spiders or snakes hiding underneath. Once you’ve cut it by a third, wait a few days, then cut it by a third again. This ensures you don’t overstress your lawn. Once this is completed, you can use your mower at the highest setting, then drop it to your desired length.

3. What should you do with the clippings?

Clippings are a great way to feed your lawn, so leave them on the lawn or use a mower that discharges them between the grass blades. You’ll be surprised at how quickly they dry and get absorbed by the soil. If you don’t like the clumped look, or your grass clippings are ample, put them in your compost or use them as mulch on your garden beds. It’s a pity to let those nutrients go to waste!

4. How should you look after your lawnmower?

Every mower comes with a manual that includes maintenance tips. However, if you don’t have one, there are a few things you can do to keep your mower in tip-top condition. First, clean the mower all over and make sure you include the blades and catcher.

You’d be surprised how quickly they clog up. Second, check if your blades are blunt. If so, sharpen them with a blade sharpener, or get it done at your mower repair shop. Third, if you’ve got a four-stroke petrol motor, check the oil level and top up if necessary.

References
  1. Renault, Hayley. 29 June 2018. ‘Emissions crackdown to slash sale of two-stroke lawn mowers, outboard motors’. ABC News. Retrieved 1 December 2020, https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-06-29/dirty-mowers-and-chainsaw-motors-slashed-under-new-emission-laws/9885250
  2. Steen, Michael. ‘How to Buy the Best Lawn Mower’. CHOICE. Retrieved 1 December 2020, https://www.choice.com.au/outdoor/gardening/lawnmowers-and-trimmers/buying-guides/lawn mower
  3. NSW Environment Protection Authority. 1 August 2014. ‘Reducing Emissions from Non-road Diesel Engines.’ epa.nsw..gov.au. Retrieved 2 December 2020. https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/-/media/epa/corporate-site/resources/air/140586nonrddiesinforpt.pdf
  4. Arizton. April 2020. ‘Garden Equipment Battery Market – Global Outlook and Forecast 2020-2025’. ReportLinker. Retrieved 2 December 2020. https://www.reportlinker.com/p05888073/Garden-Equipment-Battery-Market-Global-Outlook-and-Forecast.html?utm_source=PRN
  5. ‘How Often Do Australians Mow Their Lawn?’ Jim’s Mowing. Retrieved 3 December 2020. https://www.jimsmowing.com.au/2018/09/jims-franchise-survey/

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