Choosing the Right Lawn Mower Using Your Lawn Size

There’s a good reason you don’t see push mowers trimming the grass on golf courses or massive zero-turn mowers on postage-stamp condominium lawns: the size of the lawn determines the best type of mower to use. If you are in the market for a new lawn mower, you need to know the size of your lawn to ensure that you can find the lawn mower to suit your needs.

Choosing the Right Lawn Mower Using Your Lawn Size

Determine Your Lawn’s Square Footage

Large lawns require different types of lawn tools from smaller lawns, so when shopping for a lawn mower, it helps to understand your lawn’s size. Admittedly, complete and total accuracy regarding your lawn’s square footage is not paramount for finding the right lawn mower; a general estimate is usually enough to narrow down your lawn mower choices and help you identify the right mower for you. Still, some homeowners like to make exact measurements, so here are a few different ways to get the size of your lawn:


Lay a yardstick or tape measure on the ground and walk alongside it, paying attention to the length of your stride. Then, pace the boundaries of your lawn, counting the number of steps you take per side. You should be able to roughly estimate the perimeter measurements of your lawn, from which you can calculate your lawn’s area. If your lawn has curves, you can ignore them and take straight-line paths around your lawn; after all, measuring with pacing will always produce a rough estimate, so trying

Carefully Measuring

If you are interested in increasing the precision of your lawn measurement, you can use a measuring tape to measure the sides and find the area. Of course, if you have a larger lawn, you may need to invest in a longer measuring tape. For curved portions of a lawn, you may need to use calculus to determine the area of an irregular shape — but you certainly don’t need accuracy to the thousandth of an inch to choose the right lawn mower.

Using the Web

If you don’t have the time or ability to measure your lawn yourself, you might take advantage of a few online tools that will measure your lawn for you. Using satellite images of your home, tools like Measure My Lawn can give you semi-precise measurements of your lawn without the hassle of venturing outside.

Find the Appropriate Lawn Mower

Once you have a sense of the size of your lawn, you can start shopping for the right type of lawn mower. Here is a general guide to help you find the lawn mower that best suits your lawn space.

Less Than 1/4 Acre

Walking mowers are ideal for lawns with less than about 10,000 square feet. A large number of residential lawns fall into this category, as few homeowners have such generous outdoor space. Walking mowers are the traditional style of lawn mower, requiring you to walk behind them to guide them around your lawn. If your lawn is on the smaller side of this category, you might consider a push mower, which demands your strength but takes up much less space in storage. Then again, if your lawn is right at the 1/4-acre mark, you might want a larger self-propelled mower, which will require less effort from you.

1/4 Acre to 2 Acres

Larger lawns require more time and energy to mow. Because you don’t want to heft a walking mower around so much grass, you should look for riding mower that does all of the work for you. There are a few different varieties of lawn mower that are appropriate for a lawn this size:

Rear-engine riding mowers, which are excellent for lawns on the smaller end of this size category. They tend to have smaller deck sizes, which allows for greater maneuverability but can mean significant wear-and-tear from larger lawns.

Lawn tractors, which tend to be what people imagine when they think of riding mowers. These front-engine mowers have limited maneuverability, so they are not good for lawns with precise shapes. However, they are among the most affordable riding mower options.

Residential zero-turn mowers, which boast unsurpassed maneuverability and power. These mowers can get much closer to obstacles than other riding mowers, and they move quickly to make lawn mowing an easy and exhilarating chore.

More Than 2 Acres

Not many homeowners have acres upon acres of tended lawn, but if you want to keep a wide swath of your landscape carefully mowed, you will need to invest in a robust lawn mower. Commercial-duty zero-turn mowers can withstand the heavy use required on larger properties, and their larger deck sizes will make mowing faster, even when you have several acres to mow.

The size of your lawn is arguably the most important factor determining your lawn mower options, but it shouldn’t be the only element in your decision. Your strength and mobility are important factors, as are your lawn mower budget and the scope of your lawn tool storage space. Once you know the size of your lawn, you should consider everything else you might need from your lawn mower to make the best decision for your lawn.

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About The Author

Aurangzeb Khan

I am a seasoned freelance writer with years of experience in the industry. With a passion for learning and a love of reading, I bring a unique perspective to every article I write. I have contributed to numerous well-respected websites and continue to strive for excellence in my craft.

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