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Buying walk-behind mower: scary reviews...


ruauu2's Avatar
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08-10-17, 08:32 AM   #1  
Buying walk-behind mower: scary reviews...

It's time to replace the 18-year-old Toro rear-wheel drive mulching mower. It's been fairly good and its B&S engine has been great.

I went to Lowe's and the salesperson told me how great the Husqvarnas are. Then I go to the Lowe's website and the reviews of the Husqvarnas are full of horror stories.

I check out the reviews on Amazon of the Toros and they're not much better.

Your opinions, please, of what is an acceptable brand to buy? Which brand/model have you had good luck with and which have been trouble?

 
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08-10-17, 09:31 AM   #2  
Well, back when Sears used to be a good store, I almost always bought Craftsman (often last years model on a discount). I'm not sure who made theirs...maybe MTD or Murray?

I no longer have a lawn, but when I did the thing I looked for was front wheel drive, big rear wheels (very easy to maneuver around beds and trees), easy deck height adjustment, easy bag or mulch options. The Craftsman worked for me at less than $300, closer to $200. Oh, and no stupid small plastic container for bagging, mesh cloth or no sale. Rear discharge also.

Reviews in PM say the Husqvarna 7021P and the Troy-Bilt TB230 are both good values that work well and have decent features. The TB has tall wheels like I like, but the Husq has a Honda engine...almost a toss up if I had to choose.

It looks like the Husq may have been a misprint or a model mixup. The one I listed is a push, no self propel. Maybe they meant the HU700F. Tall rear wheels and front drive.

Reviews all depend on the specific model and date of manufacture. Things may change on the same model from year to year or even w/in a model year.


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cheese's Avatar
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08-10-17, 11:04 AM   #3  
I'd prefer a husquvarna with a honda engine to most any other consumer grade walk behind.


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08-10-17, 11:26 AM   #4  
I'd prefer a husquvarna with a honda engine to most any other consumer grade walk behind.
Me too!


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08-10-17, 11:58 AM   #5  
For just a regular push mower I like Murray. With regular maintenance they last a long time. The self propelled mowers the kids have had didn't impress me much - seems like I was always having to replace the drive wheels. [several different brands]

One thing to remember about online reviews - those that are dissatisfied are more apt to post a review than those who are happy with the product.


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08-10-17, 05:30 PM   #6  
Murray is not the "Murray" of old, not real sure who makes them now but the Murray "name" is owned by Briggs & Stratton. Most I see these days are purchased at Wally World...

The Honda powered Husqvarna's I believe are rear wheel drive which uses a transmission and splined output shaft. The gear box is driven by a belt still, but there is no meshing of steel gears to plastic teeth like on many front wheel drive which wear due to the lifting and lowering of the front of the mower without disengaging the drive, as well as the plastic teeth on the wheels...just another "better Idea"
There is also the AWD Husqvarna with Honda engine if you are willing to pay up...the ones I have worked on have been fairly mechanic friendly and seem solid...


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08-10-17, 05:41 PM   #7  
For just a regular push mower I like
For just trimming, light patches and places you can't get to on a rider, any small mower with a classic brigs, 3.5HP to 4.5HP..? Simplest and most dependable I know of.
Not even sure if these are still produced but would be found on Weed Eater/Poulan, newest I have seen.
If there was ever a Mad Max event, I would seek and hoard these lil wonders even though they are vertical shaft.


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08-10-17, 05:42 PM   #8  
AWD Husqvarna
I guess that's for safely mowing in light snow and rain?


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08-10-17, 05:44 PM   #9  
It's time to replace the 18-year-old Toro
If I got 18 years out of anything I would never consider anything else!!

 
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08-10-17, 05:49 PM   #10  
mowing in light snow and rain

What would you know about either :P


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08-10-17, 05:52 PM   #11  
If I got 18 years out of anything I would never consider anything else!!
I'd like to buy a new Pontiac, because I really liked the combination of price and features, but as you know....

And my Suzuki Verona has given good service for 13 years as well. Where are their dealerships now?

Unfortunately, build quality and actual manufacturers change with acquisitions and mergers. Name brands are swapped around like trading cards, it seems sometimes.


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08-10-17, 11:02 PM   #12  
Perfect response Gunguy45. 20 years ago I thought the mowers they were making were junk and the old stuff was better... Looking at what they're making now, I didn't know what junk was. In another 20 years, I shudder to think. Troy Bilt used to be owned by Gardenway and they had decent products, now they are close to the bottom of the MTD brand totem pole. Murray was broken up, Briggs and Stratton bought the parts side, John Deere got the manufacturing facility, and now the name is back on equipment that has no relation to the old Murray brand. Husquvarna used to be an excellent sweedish maker, now it's a broad name that ranges from very good equipment to lower end.Some of the toro stuff isn't even made by Toro... basing future expectations on past performances is the natural thing to want to do, but it's not a good basis for comparison anymore.


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08-11-17, 10:19 AM   #13  
Back in January I bought a Honda HRX mower and I have to say I have never had a mower like it. Quality-wise it's in a whole different league,of course at over $700.00 it should be! Very powerful engine and it has started on the first pull every time,including the very first time.

For walk behinds I've always bought Craftsman or something similar, but when I retired I decided to treat myself to a really good mower as I figured it will be the last one I buy. So glad I bought the Honda.

 
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08-11-17, 10:35 AM   #14  
Alternate opinion: When my gasoline mower failed I wanted something simple and more reliable. Bought the cheapest corded electric mower Walmart had and never regretted it even when the grass was 4" high. Yards at least 50'x250'.


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08-13-17, 12:57 AM   #15  
In regards to the 3 to 5 HP Engines Yes they are almost bullet proof. Even the ones with the plastic cams.

I have 3 of those that I am currently rebuilding to sell.

Why are you wanting to buy a new mower. ???

 
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08-14-17, 08:17 AM   #16  
Why are you wanting to buy a new mower. ???
Because it needs:

-- a new clutch
-- at least one new wheel
-- a new fuel tank

It also has possibly a carb issue - it seems like it runs too rich or maybe it has a partially-sheared flywheel key.

So, my thinking was due to its age and not wanting to be nickle-and-dimed, it was time to buy a new one.

But after considering the comments in this thread, I'm re-thinking my decision.

 
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08-15-17, 01:17 AM   #17  
This is one reason that these old mowers are fixable and these two are still going strong. He uses only non ethanol gas. His sister left this one setting for 5 years with gas in it.

The older ones will take the newer Pulsa Jet carb and Tank. Also the Magnetron coil.

The first one I did for him had points and was a 80 model. This one was a 77 model and had a magnetron coil on it. I did not know they made the Mag in 77.

Here is a link to a video I made a good while back >>>>>>>

https://youtu.be/Yw1Av2nQgoA

 
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09-18-17, 05:27 PM   #18  
I am in the same boat. Buying my first with a new single family home. One thing I have learned is many of the bad reviews seem to come from people who use ethanol gas which is not good for plastic carbs, they then complain how great it was first year next spring wont start. and of course the box store wants a $100 to do anything with it and they are upset. a new plastic carb on amazon is like $25.

Im leaning husquavarna. Maybe a cheap Bolen from lowes. Some people really like them.

 
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