Best Zero Turn Mower Under 3000$ – 5000$ On The Market
If you’re not familiar with what a zero-turn lawnmower is, then you’ve been missing out. Traditionally, lawnmowers are built on designs that revolve around front-wheel steering. While this gives a measure of control, there is some level of precision missing.
Mowers based on the zero-turn design pivot around the rear wheels with motors and levers connected to each of the said wheels. This allows for more focused direction control and a cleaner cut. Whether you’ve heard about these mowers are not, the chances are that you could use some assistance in selecting one.
To this end, there are insights provided below on the best zero turn mower under 3000$, as well as the best zero-turn mower under 5,000 dollar.
For organizational purposes, this section is divided into two headings. The first addresses the sub-$3000 price point, while the second addresses the sub-$5,000 price point.
|Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic|
|Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34"|
|Husqvarna Z242F 42 in. 18 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic|
|Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52" Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki|
Top 4 Best Zero turn Mower under 3000$ – 5000$ – Reviews
First, let’s look at two models that you could opt for if your budget is under 3000$.
Ariens Zoom 34 – 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-twin 34″ Zero-turn Lawn Mower
The first offering comes from Ariens, and it is from the company’s zoom series. This could make a superb mower for residential applications, as the deck has a length of only 34 inches. The cost may lead you to believe that the engine is nothing too special. However, the unit is built with a 6000 series Kohler engine that offers you 19 horsepower.
A small lawnmower doesn’t necessarily need a huge gas tank, which may be the reason that this one has a satisfactory two-gallon tank. Ariens is kind enough to ship the product with a full tank, so that it’s ready to go when it arrives.
Comfort is another aspect, and you may find this model to be quite comfortable. The fit allows you to get quite a bit of mowing in without having to worry about any pain or tiredness. You should note, however, that the unit is not adjustable. However, the back seat has a nice height of 18 inches, and there is also a cup holder that allows you to have your favorite drink with you as you tackle the grass full.
This mower might not be the best for lands with any slopes that require an uphill motion. This is because the engine does not have the easiest time propelling the 425 lb. mower up any incline. The ground speeds are 6-mph forward and 3-mph in reverse.
The construction is a pretty sturdy one, as components such as the spindle shaft and the spindle material are both made from steel.
- The 18-inch seat is high enough to give you a good view of what’s in front of you
- The composition of the deck makes it quite durable
- The Hydro-Gear® EZT transmission provides support and a smooth performance
- The Kohler engine also contributes to great performance
- The unit is not very adept at going uphill
- This is not a self-propelled mower
- The tires don’t have the benefit of fender coverage
Husqvarna Z242F 42-inch 18 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero-turn Riding Mower
The second option here comes from Husqvarna and may also be considered for residential purposes. The cutting deck is 42-inches, which makes it suitable for such applications, and it is also a testament to durability. The ClearCut™ fabricated design boasts a 10-gauge steel construction, as well as welded reinforcement strips.
The engine in this unit comes to you courtesy of Kawasaki, which is known for its prowess in various engine applications that most notably include performance motorcycles. This engine offers 18 horsepower, which gives balanced performance for the price. Not only does it offer amazing power, but it is also quiet during operation.
This model has a fuel tank with a capacity of 3.5 gallons, which boasts a fuel reserve. The transmission that is built into the mower is an integrated zero-turn, hydrostatic transmission, which is designed to be maintenance-free.
The mower weighs 551 pounds, yet the FR series, two-cylinder engine provides you with nimble performance on the flat and on hilly terrain. Be that as it may, this may not be the best unit if you need to tackle extreme slopes.
You are likely to find this unit to be quite comfortable. Not only is the seat high to allow for a great field of vision, but it also made from vinyl. Note that the model is built with a seat spring, which lends itself to an adjustable design. An integrated cup holder is just icing on the cake, as it allows you to get your mowing done while you bring your favorite drink along for the ride.
- The engine is durable, performs well, and is quiet
- The unit offers a great deal of comfort during operation
- Cutting deck performance is good
- A robust frame and caster design reduces chassis flex and promotes durability
- Anti-slip foot area is included
- Rear engine guard offers great protection
- Assembly is required that may run for half an hour
- The unit is not a self-propelled one
Now, let’s tackle a couple of mowers for those with a slightly higher budget that accommodates more’s under $5,000.
Husqvarna Z254 54-inch 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero-turn Riding Mower
This offering from Husqvarna is the big brother of the Z242F unit that was reviewed above. The first point of focus is the generous cutting deck, which measures 54 inches. It is a stamped deck that has the benefit of flat-stock steel reinforcement, which is great if you’re looking for a mower to offer durability. Additionally, you get to cover a large surface area in less time.
The engine that ships with this unit is the Kohler 7000 series. This is a two-cylinder engine with a 45.58 cubic inch cylinder displacement, and 26 horsepower. It is built to tackle both flat and hilly terrain at an average rate of approximately 3 acres per hour. Upon startup, the engine kicks off at a 6.5-mph maximum speed, thanks to the quick-start choke system. This is great if you want to get things going without having to wait for it to warm up. As powerful as the engine is, the temperature is kept low thanks to an oversized cooling fan.
This fuel tank allows you to get a fair amount of cutting in before needing a refill, as it has a capacity of 3.5 gallons with reserve. There is a hydro gear hydrostatic transmission shipped with the unit that lends itself to seamless performance and amazing support. Additionally, it is designed to be maintenance-free, which gives you one less thing to worry about.
One of the standout features of the unit is its air induction mowing technology. This means that it pulls air from both the top and the bottom of the deck, which works out great for you if you’re looking for a mower that delivers a more comprehensive cut while maintaining a cool engine.
- Durable and generously-sized cutting deck
- Robust frame and caster design allows for high durability and mitigates chassis flex
- Ergonomically designed control panel
- Rear engine guard to protect internal components
- Anti-slip foot area
- Comfortable design with armrests, a cup holder, and a high back vinyl seat that is built with a seat spring
- With all the parts included, assembly can feel like a chore
- Some depictions of the item include headlights, but there are none
- The unit is not a self-propelled one
Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52-inch Zero-turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
The final mower on the agenda is an Ariens design built for larger workloads. With this offering, you’re looking at a mower that has a 52-inch deck, which is suitable for you if you want a product that allows for the cutting of large areas in quick time. The design is constructed with a steel-framed body that is fully tubular. Such a construction type can be great for those who want lawnmowers that can be used in light rain and can handle heavy persons without getting bent or stressed.
The engine that is shipped with the model comes from Kawasaki. It goes up to 23 horsepower and has a maximum speed of 7-mph, which allows you to get things done at a slightly speedier rate than the other models reviewed. Note that the cylinders are made from waterproof iron and that the engine performs well, thanks to seamless compression release and an adequately vented carburetor.
This unit has a 2.8-gallon fuel tank, which means that you don’t need to worry about needing to fill up regularly between its jobs. There is a dial-operated height shifter paired with three cutting blades, which allow you to get your cutting done at 13 increments between 1.5 and 4.5 inches. This makes it one of the most customizable lawnmowers on the market where cutting height is concerned.
Comfort has a big part to play in the design of this unit. Not only does it offer a high-back padded seat with seed springs built-in, but there are also armrests and a cup holder to make things even more comfortable.
- The transmission features EZT hydrostatic transaxles which allow the mower to respond well to lawn contours
- The numerous cutting heights make this mower very versatile
- The seat and armrest designs lend themselves to incredible comfort
- The steel-based body design means that the product is incredibly durable
- The unit is waterproof and handles itself well under a light drizzle
- At 650 pounds, this is one of the heavier mowers on the market
- The mower is quite noisy and vibrates a lot
- There is no rubber padding where the deck and body meet, which means that the area can wear out over time
Zero-turn Mower Buying Guide & FAQ
What Is the Best Zero-turn Mower for the Money?
This is a question of value. What matters here is not necessarily which zero-turn mower is the cheapest, but instead, it’s a question of which one has the best combination of features for its price.
Of the options listed, this distinction goes to the Husqvarna Z254 54-inch 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero-turn Riding Mower. The model is designed with safety in mind, and it is equipped with numerous features to enhance the lawn mowing experience.
It comes with a 26 horsepower engine that is combined with a 54-inch deck. This gives you power and broad coverage for a faster and cleaner cut. Additionally, the air induction mowing technology increases engine life and allows for optimal operation. Of course, the design also lends itself to superior comfort and durability.
Who Makes the Best Zero-turn Mower?
The best zero-turn mower is made by Husqvarna. Not only is the company the manufacturer of the very well built Husqvarna Z254 54-inch 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero-turn Riding Mower, but it is also responsible for the Husqvarna MZ61 61-inch 27 HP Briggs & Stratton Hydrostatic Zero-turn Riding Mower, which lies on the more premium side of the zero-turn mower spectrum.
Husqvarna is known for its reputation where durable, comfortable, and convenient mowers are concerned. Zero turn mowers are used for many commercial applications, which means that they need to be powerful and comfortable. Husqvarna brings a measure of that power and comfort to residential applications.
How Much Is a Zero-turn Lawn Mower?
The price that you pay for a zero-turn lawnmower depends on the kind of features you want, where you purchase it, your budget, and the brand that you opt for. Based on these factors, it’s likely for you to see a wide variety in pricing.
For home applications, these mowers tend to start in the $2,000 price range. As more features are included and build quality improves, you may notice that the prices start to trend up to the $,6000 mark.
On average, you can get a unit that gets the job done for prices that fall below $3,000. If you can afford it, and you wish to have better quality and more extras, then anything within the $4,000 to $5,000 price range should serve you well.
How Does a Zero-turn Lawn Mower Work?
A zero-turn lawnmower is your garden variety more with a few distinctions. The first and most important is a nod to the name. The turning radius of these mowers is approximately zero, which means that you can get sharp turns up to 180 degrees on a dime.
Each model on the market has its own way of achieving this. Generally, however, there are motors affixed to the rear wheels and levers attached to those. These levers are used to control the angle of your returns. For example, you can push both levers forward to move forward are both in reverse to move in reverse. Depending on how sharp you’d like your turn to be, you simply move one lever independent of the other.
If you like a comprehensive explanation of the workflow of these units, you may view it here.
What Is the Best Time to Buy a Lawn Mower?
There is a best time to buy everything, and lawnmowers are no different. You may think that the best time to purchase one is when you need it. However, this is when prices are likely to be at their highest. For example, you may want to buy a mower in the spring. However, this is when your local store has taken stock and wants to sell all the shiny new ones. Therefore, you don’t get the best prices possible.
You could wait until summer, as there are typically Independence Day, Father’s Day, and Memorial Day sales. Be that as it may, the price may not be as low as it could be.
If you live in an area that experiences snow during the winter, it may seem like the optimal time to buy. However, at this point, what you’re left with is what no one else wanted, and these are likely to be expensive.
Your best bet is to buy during fall, as the stores are trying to get rid of stock to bring in the new mowers for the following spring. The only issue here is that you may not be able to use a unit purchased at this time right away, so you may have no way to tell if something is broken or not for a little while.
What Is the Best Tire Pressure for a Zero-turn Mower?
Tire pressure is measured in pounds per square inch (PSI). This is something that can vary depending on the model of zero-turn mower that you decided to purchase.
Typically, your front tires require a higher PSI than your rear tires. A good average is to go for 10 PSI for the rare ones and 14 PSI for the front ones. However, as stated before, the measure for each mower can be very subjective.
Fortunately, manufacturers tend to emboss the recommended PSI on the sidewall of each tire. Using these numbers is the best way to get an optimal measure. Note that you can inflate tires up to three PSI lower than the maximum. What is important is that front tires have an equal PSI, and that rear tires also have an equal PSI.
Do Zero-turn Mowers Have Brakes?
While there are some zero-turn mower models that have a foot pedal break, most of them do not. There is a high degree of control afforded to the user via the levers provided, so the unit handles much like a shopping cart.
Based on this, a traditional brake is a non-essential addition. However, these mowers tend to have an emergency/parking brake.
Should I Get a Zero-turn Mower or a Tractor?
Your choice of a zero-turn mower or a tractor depends on your unique situation. First, there is the consideration of functionality. A zero-turn mower serves one purpose. However, a tractor could have point hitch implements, a backhoe attachment, and a front end loader. If you need and plan to use all the features of the tractor, then it may be best to go that route.
Your budget is another consideration. Naturally, a zero-turn mower is cheaper than a tractor is. Of course, it’s always best to buy what gives you the most functionality within your budget.
Your terrain is arguably the most important consideration. If the ground is relatively flat, it requires nothing more than a zero-turn mower. If the terrain is rough, however, and filled with trenches, then a tractor may be a better alternative.
What Is the Fastest Zero-turn Motor?
While average zero-turn motor speeds are under 7-mph, there is one that can reach speeds of up to 16-mph, and this is the Scag Cheetah.
How Long Does It Take to Mow an Acre?
In a zero-turn mower, the mowing pace depends on the width of the deck and the kind of engine that is running. For example, A 34-inch mower, such as the Ariens Zoom 34 – 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-twin 34″ Zero-turn Lawn Mower, mows two acres per hour. This means that it takes 30 minutes to mow an acre.
Larger sized decks can achieve this even quicker, while smaller decks require a bit more time.
Is a Zero-turn Mower Worth the Money?
A zero-turn mower may or may not be worth the money depending on what your lawn situation is. If you have half an acre or less of lawn, your money would be better spent on a regular electrical, battery-powered, or reel mower. While a zero-turn mower could do the job, its power would be wasted for such a small space, and you’d end up overspending.
You don’t need a zero-turn mower unless you have several acres of lawn. A normal riding mower can serve you well for between one and three acres. The perk of having a zero-turn mower is its ability to save time, which only becomes beneficial when there is a significant amount of mowing to do.
Read more: What is the Best Lawn Mower For 3 Acres?
While all the options presented are solid, the best zero turn mower under 3000 to 5000 is the Husqvarna Z254 54-inch 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero-turn Riding Mower.
It has the largest deck at 54 inches, which means that it can tackle the largest surface area. This is great if you’re looking for a unit that yields a quicker cut. Additionally, the 3.5-gallon fuel tank allows you to cut for longer before you need to fill up.
The ergonomic panel and comfortable design can make your mowing job feel much less tedious. Of course, the durability and smooth operation also factor into making it a cut above the rest.