What Is a Push Lawn Mower?

Some models of push lawn mowers have bags to collect grass clippings.
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  • Written By: Diane Goettel
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 02 April 2014
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A push lawn mower is a kind of mower that relies on the force of the user pushing it from behind and the sharpness of the blades to trim grass. These kinds of lawn mowers to not rely on any other kind of power. Now that it is becoming more common for people to purchase lawn mowers that they can ride on instead of push, the term push lawn mower is beginning to be used to describe any kind of lawn mower that is pushed instead of ridden, whether it has a motor or not. A traditional push lawn mower usually had two wheels and five blades that roll in a forward motion. A powered push lawn mower has four wheels and a carriage that covers the blades that trim the grass.

In most cases, a traditional push lawn mower does not have a bag or sack on the back end that collects the lawn clippings. The versions that have four wheels and motors often do have bags to collect clippings. Without a bag to collect the clippings, the cut grass will remain on the lawn. If one prefers to remove the clippings, they must be manually swept or raked and then collected for removal. These kinds of lawn mowers are often thought of as old fashioned because they predate the use of motorized lawn mowers.


Like many tools that have sharp blades as integral pieces, a push lawn mower is best when the blades are kept sharp. Many of these kinds of lawn mowers are designed so that they keep themselves sharpened to a certain extent. When a push lawn mower is in use, its blades scrape along the cutter bar. Even still, it is necessary to sharpen the blades every year or so to keep the machine in tip top shape. The blades can be sharpened using a backlapping technique or by having the mower serviced at a machine shop.

Lawn mowers with motors are much more common these days than push lawn mowers. Many people find that it is faster and easier to use a lawn mower with a motor than to use a push lawn mower. It is usually easier to cover large areas with a motorized mower. One of the benefits of push lawn mower, however, is price. In most cases, a push lawn mower is considerably less expensive than a lawn mower with a motor.


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