(ARA) - Though lawn mowing can be time-consuming in the spring and summer months, it's a "must do" for both the health of your lawn and basic curb appeal. Consequently, homeowners are looking for mowers to help them maintain their yards as quickly and easily as possible so they can spend more time enjoying their lawns.
A 2007 national consumer survey sponsored by outdoor power equipment manufacturer Lawn-Boy shows that homeowners are looking for features that make their lives easier. More than 65 percent of lawn-mowing consumers ranked a deck designed to reduce trimming chores, easy height adjustment, lightweight and easy to maneuver, and an easy-to-use grass clippings bag as the most important features they look for in a new mower.
With all of these features and options available on today's mowers, the buying process can be both confusing and overwhelming. Joe Hager, Lawn-Boy senior engineer, says, "The key to choosing the right lawn mower is to take a good look at your specific needs and go from there." But how do you know which mower, or what combination of features, fits you and your specific needs? To find out, you must ask yourself a few simple questions:
* Who will use the mower? Will you be the only user or will several people in your household use it throughout the season?
If several people will be mowing the lawn, consider a mower that can be easily adjusted to fit a variety of operator heights. Some models let you adjust the handle height with a single, easy-to-reach knob. Also consider a mower with a self-propel system, like Lawn-Boy's Sens-a-Speed system that automatically senses and intuitively adjusts to each person's walking speed, from 0 to 5 miles per hour.
* How big is your yard?
If your yard is a half-acre or less, consider a walk-behind mower with self-propel system. If it is more than a half-acre, consider a riding mower instead of a walk-behind. Also, a riding mower with a 38-inch cutting deck is a good choice for a moderate-sized yard less than one acre.
* Do you feel fatigued after mowing?
Consider a mower with ergonomic, padded grips to make mowing comfortable and help ease the strain on hands and arms.
* Do you frequently have to stop mowing to pick up debris, toys or other obstacles?
Look for a mower with a Blade Control System (BCS), which stops the blade when you release the mower's handle, allowing you to pause to empty the bag, pick up debris or roll across a driveway or sidewalk without having to stop -- and then restart -- the engine.
* Do you bag your grass regularly?
Attaching or removing the bag can be a hassle on many mowers. Look for a mower with an Easy Lift bag, which can be put on or taken off with just one hand. This feature comes standard on all Lawn-Boy Insight, Insight Gold and Insight Platinum mowers.
* Do you have limited storage space?
If the answer is "yes," many mowers today fold for convenient storage.
The good news is that some manufacturers are listening closely and developing new features to meet homeowners' evolving needs. "Technology has finally advanced to the point where we can give people exactly what they've always wanted," says Lawn-Boy's Hager.
To help you find the right lawn mower for your needs, Lawn-Boy developed an online shopping guide that walks you through the decision-making process. At www.FindYourMower.com, you can assess your mowing needs, find the corresponding features and identify the best mower or mowers for you. In just a few minutes, you'll be on your way to the right mower and a more enjoyable summer.
Courtesy of ARAcontent