A good lawn reel mower is an essential tool for not just your average handyman but the vast majority of Americans who like to keep their lawn presentable. The first lawnmowers ever made were manual reel mowers – quiet, simple yet effective. However, as technology advanced, so did the traditional lawnmower with the invention of gas-powered and electric reel lawnmowers. Despite this, many people stood by their manual reel mowers and continue to use them even today.

 All that is required is for a person to push the reel mower across their lawn making the wheels spin blades that would cut the grass. Therefore, instead of tearing and shredding the grass up like an electric lawn mower would do, it cuts the grass the same as a pair of scissors would. The traditional reel mower is the perfect choice for the eco-conscious individual as it cuts down the amount of pollution and noise that the home is producing.

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the best reel mowers that are dominating the market right now and what they offer.

What To Consider When Buying A Reel Mower

Blade quantity

Usually, reel mowers are equipped with either five, seven, or eight-inch diameter reels. With each reel having either five, six, seven, eight, ten, or eleven blades. The higher the number of blades typically indicates moving at a lower level of cut.

For example, a reel mower with five blades would be used where there is a higher level of cut needed. Compared to a mower with eleven blades would be used where there is a lower height of cut needed.

Cutting Width

Typically, the wider the width of the reel mower, the faster it can cut someone’s lawn. This is because they will not need to make as many trips back and forth across their lawn. Reel mowers usually vary from ten to eighteen inches wide. However, the reel mowers that we will be discussing in this review average from fourteen to twenty inches wide.

Cutting Height

Reel mowers typically work better on lower terrains and lower mowing heights. Typically, the average cutting height of a reel mower is 2.5 to 4.0 inches. However the average cutting height of the reel mowers that we will be comparing ranges from 0.5 inches to 3 inches.

Grass Catching Area

Some reel mowers come with a grass catcher attached whereas others do not. If an individual is particular about how their lawn looks then purchasing a grass catcher or a reel mower that already has a grass catcher is a good idea. Despite this, it is recommended that every other time the lawn is mowed that the glass clippings should be left on the lawn as they turn into a natural fertilizer. Therefore, making the grass grow healthier.

Top 10 Best Reel Mowers

Best Overall

1. Fiskars StaySharp Max Reel Mower 18 inch

Key Features

InertiaDrive Reel

Non-contact blades

Reversible grass chute

Cut Height: 1.0 – 4.0 inches

Cut Width: 18 inches

Number of blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

Taking the top spot on our list is one of the best reel mowers on the market, Fiskars StaySharp Max Reel Mower. Practical, adjustable, and built with the newest technology, it is the perfect option for not only those looking to upgrade their reel mower but for people new to using a reel mower.

Fiskars has been established in the garden and homeware business since the middle of the 17th century and has become one of the frontrunners in their field. So, it comes as no surprise that all their latest reel mowers are equipped with the absolute best and latest patent-pending technology, InertiaDrive reel. This new technology makes it 60% easy to push than other reel mowers on the market, making it a good option for those who cannot or do not want to overexert themselves whilst mowing their lawn.

Whilst it is clear the InertiaDrive Reel is the best feature of this mower, it is also notable that the StaySharp cutting system cuts grass without unwanted contact between the blades and the reel, this allows for a sharper cut as well as prolonging the life and health of the grass. The cutting system also eliminated further costs down the line as there is no need for manual blade sharpening. The mower meets and exceeds all of the customers’ needs, ensuring a comfortable experience. The reversible grass chute can be positioned to the customer’s preference to direct clippings any which ways the customer’s heart desires.

The combination of cutting edge technology in this mower can make cutting your lawn a walk in the park, literally.

Best For Ease of Use

2. Fiskars 17 inch Staysharp Push Reel Lawn Mower

Key Features

InteriaDrive Reel

Advanced technology – 30 percent easier to push than other reel mowers

Lifetime Warranty

 

Cut Height: 1.5 – 3.5 inches

Cut Width: 17 inches

Number of blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

It seems Fiskars is the company that keeps on giving. As their 17 inches, StaySharp Push Reel Lawn Mowers claims second place on our list. If you are looking for an efficient reel mower that will last, then this one is for you, boasting an impressive lifetime warranty. At first, the claims they make about their 17 inch StaySharp Push Reel Lawn Mower seem too good to be true, however, they are supported with an array of positive customer feedback.

It is clear that Fiskars has ease of use for the customer at the forefront of their minds when designing this real mower as it has a combination of advanced new technologies that make it 30 percent easier to push than other reel mowers. This means no more lugging around breaking a sweat whilst trying to trim your lawn. With patent-pending InertiaDrive, this reel mower delivers 50 percent more cutting power to push through twigs, weeds, and tough terrain that would typically jam other reel mowers.

Overall, Fiskars seem to live up and even exceed the claims they make about this technology advancing mower, making it one of the best options for those who want an easy to use a manual reel mower. However, it isn’t the cheapest reel mower in our review.

Best for Width

3. Scotts Outdoor 20-Inch 5-Blade Classic Push Reel Lawn Mower

Key Features

Quick snap height adjusters

Precision blade technology

Environmentally friendly

 

Cut Height: 1.0 – 3.0 inches

Cut Width: 20 inches

Number of blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

For environmentally-conscious homeowners who are worried about the planet, Scotts Outdoor Power Tools 20-Inch 5-Blade Classic Push Reel Lawn Mower is the way to go. One of the main selling points is that by choosing this reel mower the customer is being environmentally friendly by maintaining their lawn in a planet-friendly way, whilst still having a comfortable and convenient experience.

Scotts is well known worldwide for its outdoor products and power tools that equip people to get the job done whilst also being planet conscious.

With a generous 20 inch width and an adjustable height, this mower allows the customer to cut their lawn to their own preference. This is a great option for those who may have multiple lawns of different lengths and sizes as the adjustability allows the buyer to cater to a variety of lawns with just one mower.

Overall, this mower is easy to push, cuts smoothly, and leaves a nicely trimmed lawn.

4. Greenworks 16-inch Reel Lawn Mower with Grass Catcher

Key Features

Rear wheels for easier movement

4 position height adjustment

“Zero fumes, no gas”

 

Cut Height: 1 1/8 inches to 2 ¼ inches

Cut Width: 16 inches

Number of Blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

Earning the fourth place on our list is the Greenworks 16-inch Reel Lawn Mower with Grass Catcher 25052. Weighing only 26lbs, it is super lightweight and easily maneuverable. Therefore, making it the perfect choice to mow the lawn without overexertion. Because of how lightweight it is and its adjustability, it is easier to store than larger mowers.

At less than $100 it is a perfect option for those looking to purchase a good reel mower on a tighter budget. However, this does not mean it is lacking in terms of features. Greenworks have incorporated innovations you would expect on more expensive reel mowers like an adjustable height and a grass catcher.

Some reel mowers on the market do not come with a grass catcher already attached, therefore eliminating a potential extra cost. The aesthetic looking grass is an added bonus as customers would not need to spend extra time tidying up the clippings.

In conclusion, Greenworks mower seems a perfectly viable option for those who may not have a lot of storage space that want a reel mower without the hefty price tag.

Dependable

5. Remington RM3100 18-Inch Reel Push Mower

Key Features

Dual lever height adjustment

Durable 5 blade adjustable reel

2 in 1 mulching feature

 

Cut Height: 0.75 – 2.50 inches

Cut Width: 18 inches

Number of Blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

Durable and Dependable. Remington’s slogan is certainly lived up to with their 18-Inch Push Reel Mower. Remington’s design their power and outdoor tools to be reliable, easy to use, and efficient, and this mower is no exception.

Affordable, adjustable, and convenient. There is not much more a customer could want. Priced at $82, this mower has features that are typically seen on more expensive mowers – like a grass-catching area and an adjustable height ranging from 0.75 to 2.5 impressive inches. Weighing only 13 pounds it is super lightweight and easy to store for those who do not have much storage space.

The grass catching area is important to take note of as not many mowers on the market come with a grass catching area. It often has to be purchased separately, making this mower even more of a steal. This feature makes this mower a great option for those who do not want to leave their grass clippings all over their lawn.

Overall, there is not much more the customer could ask for with this mower. It has fantastic modern features at a price point that will not break the bank.

6. Great States 16-Inch 5-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower

Key Features

Comfortable grip

Lightweight, easy to manoeuvre

Alloy steel construction

 

Cut Height: 0.5 – 2.5 inches

Cut Width: 16 inches

Number of Blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

Having been established in the business for over 120 years, Great States applied a century worth of technology to a good old fashioned idea and came their Great States 16-Inch reel mower.

A notable feature is the blades are made of heat-treated alloy steel, meaning they do not need to be sharpened as often as the blades on other mowers. Being lightweight as well, it is also easy to maneuver and can be stored in small spaces. This makes this mower an excellent choice for someone looking for a mower that requires little maintenance and looking after.

With multi-height adjustment, from 0.5 to 2.5 inches, this mower can be used at whichever height the customer prefers for their lawn and they find most comfortable.

With no fancy frills or extras, this mower is pretty much what it says on the tin and it does the job it was made for at an affordable price of under $100. Proving that less is sometimes more, and their customers seem to think so as well.

7. Earthwise 16-Inch 7-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower

Key Features

Adjustable cutting setting

Unbreakable steel side plate

Suitable for all grass types

 

Cut Height: 0.5 – 2.5 inches

Cut Width: 16 inches

Number of Blades: 7

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

On the pricier side compared to other mowers of a similar style, Earthwise’s 1715 16-Inch 7-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower sits at 7th place on our list.

‘Get in step with the times. Get behind Earthwise Reel Mowers’. Having been established for over 100 years, Earthwise believes simplicity is key when it comes to a good reel mower. Earthwise is part of the American Lawn Mower Company that produces reel mowers for Earthwise, Great States, and America Lawn Mower brands. They also license and sell mowers under Scotts, meaning the American Lawn Mower Company is the most dominant in the reel mower market currently and has been for over 100 years.

Their mower has all the expected features on a mower whilst boasting unbreakable steel side plates and a 7 blade reel. The extra blades (the average being 5) make this mower a more suitable option for those cutting lawns of a lower height, something to be taken into consideration when purchasing.

Despite having a variety of features, it is priced quite highly, making it an expensive choice for a more simplistic mower.

8. Scotts 18-Inch 7-Blade Push Manual Reel Lawn Mower

Key Features

Requires little maintenance

Heat-treated alloy steel blades

Adjustable cutting height

 

Cut Height: 1.0 – 3.0 inches

Cut Width: 18 inches

Number of Blades: 7

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

Lightweight and easy to operate, chores in the yard can be taken care of much more easily and with less effort with Scotts 716-18S 18-Inch 7-Blade Push Manual Reel Lawn Mower.

Scotts are known worldwide for their expertise and outdoor products such as power tools, lawn fertilizers, and other products to maintain your yard and lawn. Scotts does this whilst also being environmentally friendly and conscious of their footprint on the planet. This mower is the perfect example as it runs on mechanical energy and it does not require a lot of maintenance. They also put that because it uses the customer’s mechanical energy it has health benefits compared to using an electric or gas mower.

Another major win for this reel mower is the adjustable cutting height that allows the buyer to cut their lawn to look exactly how they want it to. With its two-inch height range, gone are the days of only being able to cut at one height.

Overall, Scotts 18-Inch 7-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower is a great option for customers looking for an easy, environmentally friendly way to keep on top of their lawn.

9. American Lawn Mower 14-Inch Deluxe Hand Reel Mower

Key Features

Lightweight and easy to maneuver

Heat-treated alloy steel

Environmentally friendly

 

Cut Height: 1.0 – 1.75 inches

Cut Width: 14 inches

Number of Blades: 4

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

The American Lawn Mower Company’s ethos is based upon being environmentally conscious whilst providing the customer with a quality product and experience and they certainly do that with their 14-Inch Deluxe Hand Reel Mower.

With heat-treated alloy steel and a durable cushioned handle, with the right amount of tender loving care, this mower can last years. As it does not have a motor, the only major maintenance it needs is the blades sharpening every 3-5 years, making it good as new every time.

However, the cutting height is not remarkably high or technologically advanced compared to other reel mowers that are currently available on the market. Some reel mowers have a wider range of adjustable height, meaning they can be used on a variety of different grass heights however the low and limited height of this mower may be a real disadvantage to some.

Despite this, the ease of use and long life span of this mower makes it a perfectly viable option for those that are not picky about having fancy features and extras.

10. Great States 18-Inch 5-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower

Key Features

Alloy Steel Construction

Lightweight – easy to store and maneuver

Precise Cutting

 

Cut Height: 0.5 – 2.75 inches

Cut Width: 18 inches

Number of Blades: 5

Our Rating

Check Price

Our Take

The Great States 18-Inch 5-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower is sturdy, reliable and gets the job done. Part of the American Lawn Mower Company, Great States prides themselves on providing easy to use, low maintenance mowers and this mower is a shining example of that.

Weighing only 27 pounds, it is solidly built with alloy steel construction yet is lightweight enough to be easily maneuverable and stored. It also comes with a year’s warranty, meaning if any damage does occur to the mower within its first year, it can be replaced at no extra cost.

It is perfect for anyone looking for an easy way to cut their medium/large sized lawn as it has an 18 inch width. Whereas homeowners with a smaller lawn may be better off purchasing a model that has a smaller cutting width like the Great States’ 16-Inch mower.

Reel Mower Buyers Guide

When it comes to investing in a reel mower, the buyer may wish to splurge on some features and save on others. People may be specific about the number of blades and willing to pay more for a mower that has a certain amount however they might not be bothered about having a grass-catching area.

But which features should be splurged on? That’s where we’re here to help.

Blade Quantity

As is evident in the mower reviews, the most common number of blades you will come across in a reel mower is five. Generally, the fewer blades a mower has on its cylinder, the more suitable it is for mowing lawns that have taller grass. This means that reels with five blades are more likely to be used in the home.

Whereas a mower with ten blades is more likely to be used on a lawn of a lower height, like a golf course, as they need to be mowed more often and at a lower height. It is important for customers to consider what type of lawn they will be cutting with their reel mower. The number of blades does not correlate with the price meaning there is no need to spend extra just for a higher number of blades.

Reel Mower Cutting Width

As expected, the larger the width of the reel mowers the larger the area of lawn that can be covered in a single push. Meaning that wider reel mowers are more suitable for larger lawns. A larger cutting width reduces the amount of time it takes to mow the lawn.

So, a reel mower with a wider cutting width would be worth paying a little bit extra for if someone is concerned about the amount of time it takes them to mow their lawn. A self-propelled lawn mower might be much more suited to your needs if you have a larger yard.

However, smaller width reel mowers are sometimes considered better. This is because they are easy to store and they are much lighter, meaning they are easier to push.

Cutting Height

Whilst cutting width is preferential, cutting height is essential. This is because if it is cut at the wrong height it can ruin not only how the lawn looks but also the health of it and how it grows. To avoid this problem, it is worth spending a little bit extra to purchase a reel mower that is adjustable in terms of height.

Reel Mower Storage Size

Some reel mowers are adjustable in their height and width. If a customer is short on storage space for their mower, we advise that they purchase one with an adjustable height and/or handle.

This allows it to be stored in a smaller space. Another thing to be considered would be the weight of the mower. Lightweight mowers are much easier to maneuver and store than heavier mowers.

Average Price

Reel Mowers can vary in price greatly. Some sit around $60 – $80 whereas others are at $200. However, this can be dependent on what the customer is looking for.

The high specification reel mowers, such as Fiskars models, are priced around $200 as they have new technology as well as all the latest features. Whereas a simpler mower like some of the Great States models is priced around $80.

All reel mowers do the same job, it just depends on how easy the customer wants to make that job and the latest technology.

A lot of customers like to stick with their more traditional mowers. It is a matter of preference and how much they are willing to spend.

How to Use a Reel Mower

One reason a lot of Americans are worried about switching to a reel mower is that they dont know how to use one properly. Or they do not know the benefits it can bring to their lawn.

Manual reel mowers all look remarkably similar however there are two types available to choose from. Contact mowers and non-contact mowers. With a contact mower, the blades contact the bed knife whereas in a no-contact mower they do not.

There are advantages and disadvantages to both types. Contact mowers tend to require less maintenance but are rather noisy. Whereas non-contact mowers require more maintenance but also have a longer life span.

  1. Set the cutting height on the mower to the desired level.  This should be based on the recommended height for that specific mower and also the buyer’s personal preference. Check if the blades need sharpened, they will not need doing when the mower is brand new, but they will after a while.
  2. Push the reel mower in a straight line at a walking speed from one side of the lawn to the other. Then turn the mower back the way and repeat for the next section. Repeat until the whole lawn is cut to the desired length.
  3. Once the whole lawn is cut remove the grass catching area and empty it (if the mower has one). Brush the grass clippings off of the mower.
  4. Wipe the mower down and store it away.

FAQ’s

Will a reel mower cut whilst pulling it backwards?

The majority of reel mowers will not cut when being pulled backwards. They will only cut blades of grass when they are being pushed forwards. This is because the forward’s motion of the wheels also rotates the blades, which in turn cuts the grass.

In this case, the blades are often sharper on one side and dull on the other. If you want to cut backward you could sharpen the other side of the blade. However, this is dependent on the model.

How to cut tall grass with a reel mower?

Tallgrass is harder for the blades of a reel mower to cut. There are however some things that can be done to make it easier. The height of the reel mower needs to be adjusted to the highest cut level.

The blades must be sharpened in order to push the reel mower easily. This will make the job easier for other parts of the mower as well, and reduce wear. It’s also important to make sure the lawn is completely dry. Attempting to cut whilst the grass is wet is much harder as it sticks together and clogs up the reel mower.

Is using a reel push mower better for maintaining lawn than an electric or gas one?

Reel mowers cut blades of grass precisely using a scissor-like action whereas electric and gas mowers cut them harshly. The gentle cut of a reel mower helps promote healthy grass growth. Not only is it better for the grass, but it is also better for the environment.

Most reel mowers do not use any electricity or gas. Therefore they don’t put out any pollution making it a much more environmentally friendly option.

How often do reel mowers need sharpening and how is it done?

How often the blades of a reel mower need to be sharpened depends on a variety of factors. These include – frequency of use, size of the lawn, the number of blades, and how particular the customer is about the sharpness of the blades.

Different manufacturers recommend different frame times for how often to sharpen reel mower blades. These vary from one year up to eight years, based on the quality of the mower. It is recommended that the customer listens to their reel mowers needs and watch how well it is cutting. You can then decide for yourself when and how often the blades need sharpening.

0 Shares:
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like
A guide to Strawberry Flowers
Read More

A Guide To Strawberry Flowers

From different colors, sizes, and harvesting periods strawberry plants are a delicious little fruit. The strawberry flower is beautiful in its own right, as well as bright and fragrant.