Like many first-time homeowners, I was working with a very small budget when I bought my first house. I knew there would be a ton of things I'd need to buy, so I had to shop wisely.
In spring when I started shopping for a lawn mower, reel mowers caught my eye. They seemed to offer a lot of advantages, but I wasn't sure the theory would work as well in reality. I gave it a try and I discovered that in many situations, reel mowers make a lot of sense. Here's why:
Expense. The first thing I noticed about reel mowers is that they were considerably less expensive than gas- or battery-powered mowers. And I reasoned that because I wasn't using gasoline or electricity, they were also more budget-friendly to use.
Environmental impact. I also loved the fact that reel mowers don't add to pollution levels in the atmosphere. And I didn't smell like gas after using them.
Size. Perhaps it's because they don't have so many working parts that reel mowers are smaller and lighter. It was great that I didn't have to have any help loading the mower into the car and I could actually hang it up on my garage wall to save space when I wasn't using it.
Exercise. While newer reel mowers aren't at all hard to push, they're a great form of exercise. You burn about 400 calories an hour mowing the lawn with a push mower.
Lawn quality. A little research taught me that my choice was great for another reason: Reel mowers tend to make a superior cut. The sharp blades make clean cuts to your grass, much like scissors. Traditional rotary mowers actually tear the tips of your grass off, leaving jagged edges that often turn yellow.
They're quiet. Because reel mowers don't have an engine, they make virtually no noise. You can mow whenever you want without disturbing your family or neighbors.
Continued on page 2: Disadvantages to Reel Mowers