Investing in the best small lawn mower will keep bijou backyards looking their best. Because let's be honest: a heavy-duty mower is probably overkill — in price, noise, and size. But there are plenty of compact mowers designed to maintain smaller spaces.
While some small lawnmowers are gas-powered, this environmentally friendly one works on two batteries. Some small lawnmowers offer different mulching options so that you can feed your lawn as you mow.
The Worx WG779.E Power Share is pretty amazing. Our reviewer loved this lawn mower and found it so easy to use to trim her unruly but small yard. This foldable model is great for people who lack the space to store a larger machine. And, even if you have a large yard, it can be used to mow up to 1/8 acre / 5000 sq ft.
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The best small lawn mower you can buy
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At only 29 lbs, the Worx Power Share 40-Volt 14-in Mower is easy to move around, and even lighter when you remove the batteries for storage and transit. Equipped with patented torque technology, you can increase the power of this mower to Turbo if you’re cutting thick grass (but remember, this will use up more battery).
For regular use, we found Eco mode was competent, especially for regular trims. The cutting base is 14 inches across and six height adjustments range between 2.5 to 3.5 inches with an easy-to-use lever for height adjustments. You can either mulch your grass or bag up to .85 bushels before a ‘full bag indicator’ alert notifies you it’s time to empty the sack.
To get started, simply insert the safety button, depress then pull the handle lever and you’re ready to mow. The Worx lawnmower runs on two 20V 4.0 Ah batteries. Power Share advertises that this mower can mow 5,000 square feet with just one charge. However, this depends on various factors like the thickness or height of your grass. Just keep an eye on the battery meter to know when you need to juice up and keep spares on charge. We found it capable of doing a good half hour or more of mowing before it was time to recharge which is plenty for the average yard.
Rated 5 put of 5 stars in our Worx WG779E 40V Cordless Lawn Mower review
How to choose a lawn mower for your small yard
If you've opted for a small lawn mower then it is likely your main concerns will be around how much power and ease of use you can get into a compact package. Historically, electric lawn mowers, (including cordless battery-powered models) were quite big and heavy to accommodate large battery packs for optimal run time. Luckily, technology has advanced and better-designed batteries, and brushless motors mean you get greater run time in a smaller package. If you choose a corded model, check its cord is long enough to reach around your lawn.
Next, consider the cutting width. Most lawnmowers range from 12–21 inches, and the higher this number — the faster you'll be able to mow your lawn. Larger models are more likely to offer edge-to-edge cutting, albeit heavier. If you are concerned about lifting — perhaps due to a bad back — take the narrower model and be prepared for a couple of extra runs of your yard.
And, if storage is your main reason for buying the best small lawn mower, look at foldable options. Many compact lawnmowers have a foldaway handle and a collapsible grass box. Some mulching mowers have no grass box at all.
Tips for getting the most from your small lawn mower
This advice will help you extend the life of your small lawn mower.
- Energy reserve: If you purchase a gas-powered lawn mower, top it up with fuel before each use and keep a spare tank of gas in your garage or shed. Buy a battery-powered lawn mower? Consider buying a backup battery. The harder a battery-powered lawn mower has to work (like a lawn where the grass is higher or thicker) — the quicker it will die. If your lawnmower runs out of charge mid-task — just pop in the spare.
- Never mow a wet lawn: If your lawn is wet from morning dew or rain — wait until it's dry before you mow the lawn. For one, Wet turf is heavier so the lawn mower won’t be able to cut the lawn to the best of its ability. Dry grass stands straight up, making it easier to cut. Secondly, wet grass clippings can damage the mower.
- Clean the lawn mower deck: Every once in a while, turn the lawn mower over and clean under the deck. Grass and grime can build up here, and on the blades, making your lawn mower less effective over time. If you have a gas-powered mower, make sure the gas tank is empty and the spark plug wire is disconnected if you decide to clean the deck with your best garden hose. If you have an electric leaf blower (like this one from Black + Decker on Amazon) it's worth using it before and after mowing.
- Be careful what you mow over: Before mowing, pick up sticks and any debris that could ruin your lawn mower blades. Try avoiding stumps and vines as these can damage or wrap around the blades.
- Grass clippings are good for the yard: Although grass clippings left on a yard can be unsightly — they're a natural fertilizer. A mulching feature on a lawn mower is a good option because it breaks down organic matter, helping it to decompose. That said, bagging clippings — especially weeds or grass that are high — could be helpful at certain times.
How we review small lawn mowers
|How long does it last? Is it possible to mow a small lawn before the lawnmower dies?
|Does the lawnmower have a good range of movement? Does it provide edge-to-edge cutting?
|How easy is it to use? Does it have any special features?
|Can it fit in a small garage or shed? Are there any collapsible features?
Lindsey has been writing about homes since 2013 when she joined the Homebuilding & Renovating team. She spends her time reviewing and managing several homes titles, including Homes & Gardens and Livingetc, helping with best practices for our shopping content.
Can I use a trimmer instead of a lawn mower?
It may be tempting to use a string trimmer instead of investing in the best small lawnmower. But trust us, it's very hard work, and you won't get an even trim no matter how hard you try. Although, if your lawn is very small, a hand-push reel lawnmower may suffice.
Or, forgo maintenance altogether with a no-mow wildflower meadow that bees and small creatures will love.