Most and Least Reliable Gas Riding Mower Brands
How to pick a model that will keep you cutting for years
Consumer Reports tests riding lawn mowers to help you find models that cut evenly and handle with ease. And though performance is key, you'll also want a riding mower that’s built to last. After all, these machines can cost $1,300 to $5,500.
Our latest member survey shows that the experience isn't always problem-free. Almost 30 percent of riding mowers are likely to develop problems or break in their first five years of ownership.
"The most commonly reported problem among riding mowers had to do with the mower belt, affecting 13 percent of riding mowers," says Martin Lachter, a senior research associate at Consumer Reports. "The next most common problem was related to the bag not filling or attaching to the mower properly."
Lawn tractors are your quintessential riding mower, with a big engine in front and a seat and steering wheel mounted over the cutting deck. They make up a whopping 64 percent of the riding mowers in CR’s survey purchased in 2020, far and away the most common type of riding mower owned by CR members.