Top 10 Best Residential Zero Turn Mower in 2021 Reviewed – Buying Guide

Lawn Mower

Mowing can be a tedious task. But it becomes worse if you have to mow acres and acres of land. If you have large properties that need regular care, you will be well advised to invest in the best residential zero-turn mower.

Why Zero Turn Mowers?

For one thing, most zero-turn mowers tend to be large, which means that you get a wide cut and can get done with your mowing a lot faster.

Secondly, the mowers also have a seat where you can control the machine while clipping your lawn. This makes an otherwise dreary task somewhat enjoyable. If you want to know more about the zero-turn mower, head over to this Wikipedia page.

Here is a quick roundup of the top 3 choices in zero turn mowers.

Image
Most Reliable
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
The Beast
Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66", Black
Affordable Choice
Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor
Name
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66", Black
Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor
Features
26 HP Kohler engine, 6.5 MPH max speed, 54 inch cutting width
31 HP Kawasaki engine, 10 MPH max speed, 66 inch cutting width
726cc Kawasaki FR651 engine, 7 MPH max speed, 52 inch cutting width
Most Reliable
Image
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Name
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Features
26 HP Kohler engine, 6.5 MPH max speed, 54 inch cutting width
Check on Amazon
The Beast
Image
Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66", Black
Name
Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66", Black
Features
31 HP Kawasaki engine, 10 MPH max speed, 66 inch cutting width
Check on Amazon
Affordable Choice
Image
Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor
Name
Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor
Features
726cc Kawasaki FR651 engine, 7 MPH max speed, 52 inch cutting width
Check on Amazon

Best Residential Zero Turn Mower Reviews

Let’s look at the top choices for zero turn mowers and their features.

1. Husqvarna Z254 – Best 54 inches zero turn mower

Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower

If a brand of machinery speaks for itself, it has to be the Husqvarna brand. From self-propelled lawn mowers to brush cutters and zero-turn mowers, this is one of the distinguished brands in the area of home maintenance. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that their Z254 zero-turn mowers start the list of the ten best mowers.

One thing you are bound to love about this commercial-grade mower is its 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic engine. If you have experienced engine trouble in the past, then this powerhouse of an engine will make your problems a thing of the distant past. Thanks to its high power, the machine can mow tracts of land at an admirable speed.

The width of the mower’s cutting deck is 54”, which is quite commendable. You can expect to mow your lawn in less time than you are used to with this mower. It is the best 54 inches zero turn mower. Additionally, the mower comes with a high seat that is as comfortable as can be. If you are looking for an enjoyable mowing experience, look no further than this machine.

PROS (What we liked)
  • A comfortable grip on the machine thanks to the vibration dampeners installed on the handles.
  • A wide cutting deck that allows you to mow much faster.
  • Convenience with its bushel system allows you to bag a lot of clippings before you need to empty the bags.
  • A comfortable backseat made of durable materials to ensure that it lasts long.
  • Precise cutting as the machine has no turning radius.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The collecting bags and mulching kits for the machine have to be purchased separately, which can be quite costly.
  • Using the mower downhill can be difficult because of little directional control for the driver
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
61 Reviews
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
  • 26 HP Kohler engine provides reliable startups and a max speed of 6.5 MPH
  • A patent-pending park brake system automatically activates or deactivates as the steering levers are moved outward or inward

2. Swisher Z3166CPKA – The Beast

Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66', Black

If you want to have fun while mowing your lawn, then this beast is just for you. This is the Ferrari of all zero-turn mowers and costs like that too.

The 31HP Kawasaki engine makes it a commercial-grade zero-turn mower. It comes with commercial-grade cast iron blade spindles with 3 G6 commercial Grade mulching blades. It’s very comfortable to use, even the seat is adjustable. It looks like a Sci-fi movie car.

PROS (What we liked)
  • Great for home as well as commercial use.
  • It’s fun to use and your neighbours will notice for sure.
  • Best in class engine, high max speed and 66 inch cutting width makes it perfect.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • High cost of usage due to top specs.
  • Not a great choice for small lawns.
Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66', Black
1 Reviews
Swisher Z3166CPKA Big MOW 31 HP/66 in. Kawasaki Commercial Pro Front Deck ZTR Zero Turn Mower, 66", Black
  • Patented Rapid Response Control system for improved comfort and control
  • Commercial Grade 31 HP (999cc) Kawasaki engine

3. Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor

Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor

Ariens is a new brand but we have seen it doing really well over the last few years. The most important part of a lawn mower is the engine and this has 726cc Kawasaki FR651 engine, so you can’t go wrong here.

This mower is built to last for decades because all the metal parts, including the deck, are made of thick material. Some of the owners claim to have no maintenance expense in last 10 years except the typical parts like tyre and belts.

PROS (What we liked)
  • A perfect blend of quality at an affordable price.
  • Very low maintenance cost
  • Best quality engine, will last more than 10-15 years.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • Doesn’t come with a floor mat, you need to buy that separately.
  • Typical orange color and looks, missing in style.
Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor
4 Reviews
Ariens Edge 52 in. 726 cc Zero-Turn-Radius Lawn Tractor
  • Featuring a 52” fabricated deck constructed of strong 11-gauge steel.
  • Powered by a 726cc Kawasaki FR651 engine​​.

4. Snapper 2691319 360z Mower – best high end residential zero-turn mower

best high end residential zero-turn mower - Snapper

This Snapper zero-turn mower model is a bit smaller and less potent than the Husqvarna model discussed above, but that is about as far as its downsides go. It might have a 23HP engine, but it still manages to do an excellent job of mowing your lawn correctly and giving you a superior cut. It has a 48″ cutting deck, which is excellent for homeowners with large lawns.

One of the best things about this mower is its versatility. Its rear rails allow you to attach many ATV accessories, thus transforming your mower into a carrier with minimal inconvenience. Additionally, the mower is highly durable, considering it is made with a fully welded heavy-duty steel frame and a thick-walled front axle. It is undoubtedly the best high end residential zero-turn mower.

The mower comes with a riding seat, which is great. What is better is that you can adjust the cutter deck’s height from your seat using a foot pedal. Moreover, you have up to 13 options of how short you can cut your grass, all ranging from 1.5″ to 4.5″. Talk about convenience!

PROS (What we liked)
  • A versatile mower that can be converted into several tools thanks to its adjustable cargo bed.
  • A highly durable machine made of the top quality fully welded steel frame.
  • Convenient use as you can adjust the cutter deck’s height using your feet while still seated on the mower.
  • Different sized front and rear wheels to help you maneuver easily with the machine.
  • The machine has a fabricated mower deck to increase its durability.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The mower has a 50 lb. weight capacity, which is quite limiting.
  • The mower might have carburetor problems that could make starting and using it quite frustrating

5. Ariens Company Apex 60 Lawn Tractor – fastest residential zero-turn mower

fastest residential zero-turn mower - ARIENS

This Ariens product is outstanding in the sheer size of its cutter deck. Standing at a whopping 60”, it gives you one of the widest cutting paths, which translates to much less time spent mowing your lawn. Amazing, don’t you think?

As if its extensive cutting path is not enough, the machine also has quite a remarkable maximum speed of 8mph going forwards and 4mph in the reverse mode. Not only can you cut easily forward and backward, but you can also cut much faster. It is the fastest residential zero-turn mower. Better still, the mower has a 5- gallon fuel tank that guarantees uninterrupted mowing for hours.

Additionally, the machine is quite easy to assemble. All you need to do is attach the reverse handles and the battery, and you are good to go. For this mower, you don’t need professional help with the assembly.

PROS (What we liked)
  • An extensive cutting path that allows you to get your mowing done in a short period.
  • You can easily control the movements of the machine, whether mowing forward or backward.
  • High speeds that can be easily controlled to your liking.
  • An easy assembly that requires minimal effort on your part.
  • A ten-gauge steel mower deck that is hardy and above par for a residential mower.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The machine has an unnecessary rattle that could have been easily avoided with a rubber or vinyl spacer; you might need earmuffs while working with this machine.
  • The machine has a rough ride, which makes the mowing quite uncomfortable.

6. Troy-Bilt Mustang 54 25HP – best residential zero turn mower for hills

best residential zero turn mower for hills - Troy-Bilt

Troy’s machine- Bilt, is one of the best zero-turn mowers in strength and durability. With a 25HP engine, you can rest assured that this machine will not die on you any time soon. The machine also has a 54″ cutting deck, which is great for large lawns or commercial mowing.

The mower has a reverse mode feature that enables you to mow with greater flexibility and precision. Its maximum speed going forward is 7mph and a 2.5mph reverse speed. Although the reverse speed is quite low, the forward speed is rather high and ensures that you mow quickly without wasting any time.

You can adjust the cutter deck’s height to 8 different positions, which gives you several options in terms of your cut. Your safety with this mower is guaranteed as well, thanks to its Reverse Mow Control feature. This is why it is the best residential zero turn mower for hills. The machine also has an integrated deck wash and greasable front wheels.

PROS (What we liked)
  • The machine comes with an oil filter to protect the engine and promote longevity.
  • Comfortable high chairs with ample legroom and easy-to-reach handlebars.
  • A 3- year warranty to show the company’s faith in the product.
  • A floating front axle that grants you easy access to the engine.
  • Safety guaranteed thanks to the Reverse Mow Control feature.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The machine needs constant repairs, which can be time and resource consuming.
  • The reverse speed on the machine is too slow, making mowing more tedious than it needs to be.

7. Husqvarna MZ61 Kawasaki Hydrostatic – best heavy-duty residential zero-turn mower

best heavy-duty residential zero-turn mower - Husqvarna

Yet again, a Husqvarna product makes it to the list of the best ten zero-turn mowers. This product is particularly remarkable as it has a 61″ cutting deck. Even for commercial grade mowers, that is an outstanding cutting width, which spells speedy mowing and more relaxing. It is undoubtedly the best heavy-duty residential zero-turn mower.

The mower is powered by a 24HP engine manufactured by the reputable Kawasaki company. Not only is this a powerful engine, but it is also quite durable and promotes fuel efficiency. The machine also gives you a choice to either bag, mulch, or discard the clippings from your cutting.

If you are looking for a professional light mower, look no further than this Husqvarna mower. In addition to its 61″ cutting deck, it also has a Roll-Over Protect System that ensures your safety as you mow. Its steel body points to sturdiness, which is undoubtedly a quality you want in your mower.

PROS (What we liked)
  • Strong steel chassis that is hardy and long-lasting.
  • Safety features to protect you against injury in case you have to work in areas with obstacles.
  • The mower is quite light for its size, which makes transportation a tad easier.
  • The seat comes with armrests to ensure your ultimate comfort as you more your lawn; it is the best zero turn mower with suspension.
  • You can conveniently adjust the height of the cutter from your seat.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • Assembling the machine is quite tricky, and the instructions on the manual are a bit confusing.
  • The machine is quite large, which can be problematic in storage and even fitting through entries and doors.

8. Troy-Bilt XP 25HP – longest lasting zero turn mower

longest lasting zero turn mower - Troy-Bilt

This is a sleek machine that is bound to exceed your expectations. Its all-black look gives the impression of a tastefully made sturdy mowing machine, which certainly lives up to this impression. The machine has a 25HP Briggs and Stratton engine, which speaks to its power and durability. It also comes with a 60″ cutting deck, which gives you a slightly wide cut, which translates to less time spent mowing.

The durability of this machine is beyond question as it has a wholly fabricated deck with steel reinforcement. If you are looking for a tool that will serve you for ages, this is undoubtedly the longest lasting zero turn mower. Its caster wheels also boost its durability as they are immune to damage and wear. You will also love its side discharge feature that makes it easier to get rid of clippings as you go.

PROS (What we liked)
  • The mower comes with an 18″ high back seat, which leaves you with ample legroom and guarantees your comfort.
  • The powerful engine allows you to mow up the hill without any hitches comfortably.
  • The side discharge feature makes mowing easier as you do not have to contend with clippings after cutting them.
  • The mower comes with a 3- year warranty and guaranteed customer support.
  • The mower is long-lasting because of its caster wheels and entirely fabricated deck.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The mower is poorly assembled, and you may have to deal with loose bolts and hanging wires.
  • Minor bumps could shut off your blades, which means you have to either restart the machine or bypass the safety feature.

9. Mowox MNA152613 – best small residential zero-turn mower

best small residential zero-turn mower - Mowox

This zero turn mower is a bit different from the other mowers on the list in that it does not have a seat for the driver. This means that you have to push the mower around, which can be quite tiring, especially if you have a huge lawn. Other than that, the mower is quite decent and will produce some of the best cuts you have ever had. This makes it the best small residential zero-turn mower.

Although the mower does not have a sitting space, it has a self-propel feature that makes it ideal for mowing hilly areas. It is also effortless to move around with its solitary front wheel that can be easily directed in whichever direction you please. It also makes use of Instart technology that makes starting the mower a breeze.

The machine has six different height settings, and you can easily adjust the height of the mower deck. It also has a portable battery that is convenient for the user. Better yet, you never have to change the oil; all you need is to check the level and top up as you go. It is also very competitively priced, making it the best residential zero turn mower under 3000.

PROS (What we liked)
  • The self-propel feature on the mower makes it easier to mow on steep strips of land.
  • The sheer convenience of never changing the oil; simply monitor the level and add when you need to.
  • The machine comes with its own collecting bag, which will spare you the expense of making a separate purchase.
  • The front wheel of the mower is smaller than the back wheels, which means you can easily control the mower’s movement.
  • The machine starts without a hitch, thanks to the use of Instart technology in its making.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The mower gets easily stuck whenever the front wheel is not aligned correctly, which can be quite often.
  • The machine has only one speed, which cannot be adjusted and is quite slow for most people.

10. Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1 50 – best value residential zero-turn mower

best value residential zero-turn mower - Cub Cadet

This Cub Cadet product is powered by a 23HP Kawasaki engine, making it a rather powerful machine that will cut through your lawn with admirable ease. It is also very durable, thanks to its steel encasing. Its open-frame design is also great as it makes it easy to access the engine.

Unlike other riding zero turn mowers, this product is quite suitable for mowing up and down the rolling hills thanks to its lap bar control feature. If you live in a hilly area, then this is your choice product. It also has a 50″ cutting deck, which is quite respectable and makes it the best value residential zero-turn mower.

Another feature that makes this mower the best is that it comes with headlights. Talk about uninterrupted mowing even when darkness falls! The mower also has a reverse mowing feature, which makes precision mowing easier.

PROS (What we liked)
  • You can easily control the mower downhill, which can hardly be said of most other riding mowers.
  • The mower has an open design that makes it easier for you to access the engine when you need to.
  • The side discharge feature of the mower is excellently designed to ensure maximum efficiency as you cut.
  • You can easily adjust the height of the riding seat by turning a knob.
  • The headlights on the machine make it easy to mow in the dark.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The seat on the mower does not have armrests, which can make it a little less comfortable.
  • The cutting width of the decker may be a bit small for large lawns or commercial use.

11. Ariens 915223 IKON-X – best residential zero turn mower for the money

best residential zero turn mower for the money - Ariens

The feature that stands out about this product is its quiet hum as you go about mowing your lawn. If you tend to be easily irritated by the cranky noise that most other mowers make, rest assured that you will not experience that problem with this Ariens product. Additionally, the machine gives you a level, quality cut that your neighbors will certainly envy.

The cutter deck is 54” wide, which is quite large and enables you to mow quicker. Additionally, the mower comes fully assembled, which means that you will not have to spend any time, effort, or resources assembling the machine. As soon as you get it out of the box, you can start using the mower. It is the best residential zero turn mower for the money.

PROS (What we liked)
  • The machine produces minimal noise, which is excellent, especially if you have to mow for long.
  • The machine has a wide cut, which makes for quick mowing.
  • The mower comes fully assembled, so you do not have to worry about parts that don’t fit or attach heavy parts.
  • It comes with a 3- year warranty during which period you will get free repairs.
  • You will get a level cut without much struggle using this mower.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The machine can take some getting used to, making the first few times you use it quite unpleasant.
  • The mower has a rough ride and poor direction control when mowing downhill.

Final Verdict

A zero-turn mower is a huge investment. Most commercial-grade mowers tend to be expensive, which is why you need to put a lot of thought into the kind of mower you will buy. First, ask yourself whether or not you need a zero-turn mower. If your lawn is large enough to warrant this kind of mower, then look carefully at the features of different mowers before you make your choice. That way, you will not regret your decision.


Factors to Consider while Buying a Residential Zero Turn Mowers

1. Cutter deck size

Zero-turn mowers tend to be huge machines that can make mowing a quick job. If you opt to buy a residential zero turn mower, you want to ensure that you get the best residential zero-turn mower. And what better place is there to start than the size of the cutter deck?

Most zero turn mowers have a 54″ cutter deck, although the size can range anywhere between 48″ and 61″. If you have a huge lawn, you may want to buy the bigger sized cutter decks as this will cut back your mowing time a lot. However, these could be a bit more expensive than the others, which is a factor you certainly want to consider.

2. Speed

A second factor to consider before you choose your mower is its speed. Riding zero turn mowers tend to be much faster than other mowers and can attain up to 8mph speeds. Make sure that the mower you choose has adjustable speeds to give yourself options. If you opt for a walk-behind mower, pick one with a speed that you can keep up with.

3. Height

You also want to consider the height of the mower cutter deck. Can it be adjusted? If so, how many height options do you have? Are you agreeable to this number of options? If you are, then, by all means, go ahead and buy the mower.

4. Operation

Some mowers also come with features that make it much easier to operate them. With some, for instance, you can change the height of the deck using a foot pedal. Others have safety features to keep you safe, even in bumpy rides. Others yet come with headlights so you can operate them with ease in the dark. Opt for those mowers that have numerous features that make mowing much easier.

5. Durability

Additionally, you should also opt for durable mowers. How can you tell that a mower will serve you well for long? Start by looking at its body. If it has a steel frame, especially with reinforcement, then that is the machine you are looking for. Also, consider the material used to make other parts, especially the plastic parts. If it is sturdy, then pick that mower.

6. Power

You should also consider the engine that powers the mower. Generally, engines made by respectable companies such as Briggs and Stratton, and Kawasaki, tend to be very powerful and highly durable. These should be the engines that you are looking for.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a residential zero turn mower?

This is a lawnmower that has its pivot around the rear wheels and is meant for personal use as opposed to commercial use. It can be contrasted with a walk-behind mower that typically has its turning point at the front, which means that you have to turn the front part of the mower to change its direction.

What is the difference between commercial and residential zero-point mowers?

The difference between these two mowers would be in the intended purpose. Commercial mowers are made to mow large portions of land and can be used for heavy-duty work without getting damaged. Most zero point mowers fall into this category. On the other hand, residential mowers are designed to be used by homeowners on their properties and smaller in size than commercial mowers. They may also be made from lower-grade steel for their purchase to make economic sense.

How long do residential zero-turn mowers last?

At the very least, you can expect the mower to give you 2000 hours of mowing without needing any major repairs. Most will make it to 3000 hours, although this is highly dependent on your level of maintenance. Some could even give you 4000 hours of mowing. However, these are the exception more than the rule.

What are the best residential zero-turn mowers?

What counts as the best residential zero turn mower varies from person to person depending on their needs. To one, a 48″ zero turn mower may make perfect sense as it is reasonably priced, and they probably don’t have a huge lawn. To another, a 61″ mower is a must owing to the huge size of their lawn, and the cost is justified by the long hours of use. Generally, however, the best residential zero-turn mowers are made from durable materials, have powerful engines and features that make operating them a delight.

How to lift a zero- turn mower?

Lifting a zero- turn mower is best achieved using a heavy-duty lift. These are specially made with such heavy machinery as zero turn mowers in mind, and they serve the purpose perfectly. If you are unable to obtain such a mower, try removing the deck and flipping it to access the underside of your mower.

How to change blades on a zero-turn mower?

Changing the blades will most likely require that you remove the deck, flip it, and then remove the module. To do so, disconnect the spark plug wires and ensure that your machine is on park gear. Lower the cutter deck to the lowest position possible, remove the pulley cover and the brackets that attach the deck to the rest of the machine. Remove the deck, turn it upside down to see the blades, and remove the bolts binding the edges to the deck. Remove the old blade, replace them with new ones, fasten the bolts and return the deck to the mower.

How does a zero turn mower work?

A zero turn mower works like an ordinary mower, which means that blades are rotated by a motor, which enables them to cut the grass. However, unlike other mowers, a zero turn mower comes with levers that control two motors connected to each rear wheel. The pivot is, therefore, at the rear of the mower, which is quite different from other mowers.

Who makes the best zero turn mowers?

Various respectable companies make superior quality zero-turn mowers, most of which have been discussed in the reviews. The best-rated residential zero turn mower manufacturers include Husqvarna, Troy- Bilt, and Ariens.