The best lawn mower: Electric, manual and petrol

Rediscover the joy of mowing with our expert buyer’s guide.

Man mowing the grass with a manual petrol lawnmower.

by Piper Huxley |
Updated on

Finding the best lawn mower for your garden is a must. Regular mowing is essential to having the best-looking lawn around, making sure it stays happy and healthy, and keeping it that way. Our advice is to mow at least once a week in spring and summer and less regularly in autumn and winter.

The main consideration is the type of lawn mower for your plot and this will usually be dictated by the size of your lawn. For example, a manual push-along cylinder mower might conjure up images of lazy, hazy British summers, but they're not a quick or easy option - unless you have a tiny lawn. Likewise, with a robot lawn mower you can literally it back and relax while the little machine does the work for you, but they're usually best suited to smaller gardens.

Best lawn mowers at a glance

Best for larger lawns: Einhell Power X-Change 36/47 Cordless Lawnmower – View on Amazon
Best for smaller gardens: Bosch Rotak 34 R Corded Rotary Lawnmower – View on B&Q
Best for easy storage: Flymo EasiStore 340R Li Cordless Rotary Lawn Mower – View on Amazon

Most lawns are best cut with an electric lawn mower with a rotary blade. These can be corded with long power cables or cordless and rechargeable, powered by lithium-ion batteries - light and easy to manoeuvre. You don't have the drawback of a trailing cable, and their motors don't require any maintenance nor produce any emissions. On battery lawn mowers, Geoff Hodge says, "As we get more used to charging battery-powered cars, battery lawn mowers will become an easy choice. What's more, their batteries can often be shared among sister products in the same range."

That being said, if you're blessed with a large garden, you may find that a petrol lawn mower or ride-on lawn mower is best for your needs. These bad boys provide more power and a longer runtime to tackle even the largest of lawns. We've shared the best lawn mowers to buy this season and answered more of your lawn mower questions further below.

Best lawn mower UK

Best lawn mower for larger lawns

This robust model from Einhell is a powerful electric mower designed for large lawns, offering a wide 47 cm cutting width and six cutting height positions (30-65 mm) for efficient mowing. It features a 75 L grass collection box and comes with 2 x 18 V batteries for extended operation.

However, its limited ground clearance may cause some difficulties on bumpy lawns, and the protruding wheels may need additional edge trimming. Although if it is electric you are on the hunt for - this is a great pick.

Customer review: "It’s a great piece of engineering. You get four batteries that rapidly charge in the two double-charge units. Easy to unpack and build. Mower is a little heavier than I expected. This won't be a problem as it is self-propelled. Batteries charged up in about 70 mins (from flat)."


  • Wide 47 cm cutting width for efficiency
  • 75 L grass collection box
  • Contains 2 x 18 V batteries


  • Wheels stick out, so additional edge trimming may be needed

Best lawn mower for smaller gardens

This compact Bosch Rotak 34 R Corded Rotary Lawnmower cuts right to the edge and the Powerdrive motor ensures reliable cutting performance, even in difficult situations, such as in long grass. It is very lightweight, only 11.1 kg, making it easy to manoeuvre around objects and your garden. The 34cm cutting width is perfect for small to medium-sized lawns, but you also can adjust the cutting height from 2cm up to 7cm for more scope. It is comfortable and easy to manoeuvre and push around, and the grass box can hold 40 litres of clippings so you can get the job done in one go.

Customer review: "We love this lawn mower. Easy to use and it even gets the edges of the grass next to the wooden border planks, which the old one never did. No need to use a strimmer for those anymore."


  • Cuts right to the edge, no need for a trimmer
  • Large capacity for the size


  • Corded, but not necessarily an issue

Best lawn mower with easy storage

Flymo EasiStore 340R Li Cordless Rotary Lawn Mower
Price: £197.93 (was £339.99)

This Flymo mower utilises a powerful 40V battery to tackle your lawn with ease. Further, a 34cm cutting width and a cutting height range of 2.5-6cm mean it'll cut well, neat and tidy. Though the grass box is a little small compared to others, it is cordless and powerful. Equipped with dual lever handles, you're ensured flexibility and manoeuvrability.

Customer review: "I nearly went for the slightly more expensive one but decided on this one in the end. So glad I did, it stores really well and has saved me a massive amount of space in the shed. really easy to use and the cut on the garden was great. If you have limited space to store a mower, this is the one you want. Even if you have the space, its still really good."


  • Good value
  • Stores well
  • No restriction of a power cord


  • Small grass box

Best lawn mower with grass mulcher and collector

This 48V cordless 36cm lawn mower from Greenworks is the perfect tool to keep your lawn trim in good shape. With a 2-in-1 Mulcher/Collector, your grass will surely be dealt with. Though the cutting width isn't as much as other models, it has five variable cutting heights and a completely cord-free operation. Plus, it runs off two 24V batteries for a decent run time - so it's great for larger lawns. Complete with folding handles, this lawnmower is a great choice.

Customer review: "This is a lovely little mower perfect for my small garden cuts with differing heights. The batteries are easy to put in and give plenty of time to get the job done. The delivery was very efficient and excellent service."


  • Easy to assemble
  • 2-in-1 mulcher/collector


  • Flimsier build

Best lawn mower for mulching

Making light work of cutting the lawn, the Kärcher LMO 18-36 is a battery-powered lawn mower with a wide cutting path and a large - 45L - grass catcher box. If collecting the grass isn't what you're after, don't worry. This handy machine can distribute grass evenly to fertilise your lawn, chemical-free. Plus, it has a height-adjustable handle which makes things easier. Not only that,t but this cordless machine can be adjusted to four different heights and a 36cm cutting width for an accurate and clean cut. For added safety, a special key stops this machine from being used unintentionally, and its folding design makes it easy to store for another time. To sum up, this is safe and handy.

Customer review: "I bought this after looking for a cordless mower. I was swayed by the Kärcher brand, having been pleased with previous products. The battery offer was also a nice attraction. The mower was easy to assemble. It is light and very easy to manoeuvre. My lawn area is about 185 sq m. I have been able to cut it three times on one charge of the battery. This was on the first use and the manual suggests battery life improves, so I am very happy with the performance. The cut was very good. Overall, I am very pleased with the purchase."


  • Easy to assemble
  • Comfortable to use
  • Wide cutting path


  • Battery and charger may not be included

Best self-propelled petrol lawn mower

The Murray EQ700X self-propelled lawn mower is packed with features (not gimmicks) that help to make your grass cutting as easy and accurate as possible. It has 4-in-1 functionality including bagging, rear and side discharge, and mulching, and the ReadyStart feature saves you from priming and choking the engine manually before you start it. The self-propel allows a maximum mowing speed of 3.6kmph, meaning you can get a big job done faster than with most other mowers.

Designed for lawns up to 2,000 square metres, the Briggs and Stratton engine is powerful and efficient - packing the power whilst producing less noise. We also love that Briggs and Stratton’s E-Series initiative places reduced exhaust emissions at the heart of all their engines.

Customer review: "Great mower! Had a Mountfield that lasted for years but did not like the feedback on the new ones. Took a chance on the Murray - it is really good. Much lighter to use and yet the grass collecting box is bigger. Well worth the extra money. Works well on all types of grass - and I should know, I have five acres of it! Five-star product. Plus good instructions and easy to assemble (or so my husband told me!)"


  • Starts easily
  • Powerful whilst being energy efficient
  • Great for big lawns


  • Shortest cutting setting is very severe

Best petrol lawn mower for lawns up to 500sqm

This high-quality 4-stroke push lawnmower has a relatively quiet engine so you won't need to worry too much about annoying any neighbours, and has low fuel consumption. It has a padded soft-grip handle that is foldable and collapsing grass collection bag for minimal storage requirements. It is very compact, making manoeuvrability around awkward spaces so easy. It gives your reliability and performance each time thanks to it being an easy start machine, making it a great user-friendly option.

Customer review: "For over 30 years, I've used an electric mower, and my existing one needed replacing. I took a chance and bought this petrol mower, and I'm so glad I did. The joy of being free to move around the lawn not worrying about electric cable and extension leads! Very powerful mower but as noisy as I had anticipated, pretty much the same noise level as my old electric mower. It also takes a third to a half of the time to cut the grass.

"Yesterday, I drove to a friend's house whose grass was knee-high, really a strimmer should have been used before the cut. Anyway, I took my time, and after the first cut on the highest setting and swept the cuttings up, I cut at a lower setting. Amazed it did this, but now I can keep it cut short.

"Assembly was a wee bit tricky in that positioning the screw that holds the push handle to the base of the mower. So far, very happy."


  • Low fuel consumption
  • Easy to set up


  • It's a large bit of kit

Best robot lawn mower for coverage


Price: £638.99 (was £702.99)

The Cobra Mowbot 800 can cover 800 square metres, and there’s a 1,200 square metre version as well. Technically they are similar apart from the battery, as the 1,200 has a 3.0Ah battery instead of a 2.5Ah pack. That’s a lot of lawn to mow; in British terms the larger model can handle a quarter acre of lawn. You can get a variety of custom finished shells for it too.

Where the Mowbot shines, and indeed most robotic lawnmowers, is on reasonably flat ground. For any lawn that is steep or overly complex, the Mowbot does struggle. In terms of performance, it's a slow plodder that marches to its own, seemingly random method of covering ground. But the Mowbot does a wonderful job of keeping a lawn trimmed to a consistent length.

Our review: "The Cobra Mowbot is a ‘fit and forget’ solution. For users with injuries, it’s absolutely brilliant. However, while effective, it costs almost as much as a small ride-on mower or the very best conventional lawn mower. That being said, if you pay for someone to mow your lawn, the Mowbot could pay for itself in a couple of seasons."


  • Great for those who can't mow their lawn
  • Well made
  • Virtually no tools required
  • High-end


  • Costs as much as a small ride-on mower

Want to find out more? read our full Cobra Mowbot review.

Best lawn mower on a budget

Webb Classic WEER33 Electric Rotary Lawnmower
Price: £160.33

The Webb Classic WEER33 Electric Rotary Lawnmower has excellent features and will ensure a superb finish on your lawn while being easy to manage. It’s straightforward to assemble and folds up for storage. The foam handle is comfortable and can be adjusted to a range of heights. This relatively quiet lawnmower can cut grass right up to the edge of walls and fences. Plus, it is the second most lightweight option on this list, making it easy to manoeuvre.

Customer review: "A good solid mower. I waited a while before reviewing it until I used it several times, and, so far, it's doing a perfect job. One minor nuisance is the cable holder is on the sidebar and keeps sliding halfway down the handle. It would have been better hanging from the horizontal bar at the top of the handle, but I'm sure I'll get used to it. Also, it's straightforward to clean compared to my old mower. No awkward places underneath where grass cuttings get trapped."


  • Comfortable handles
  • Adjustable
  • Lightweight


  • Some found the lawn mower struggled with damp grass

Best ride-on lawn mower for power

Price: £2,799 (was £3,229)

The Stihl RT4082 Garden Rider makes short work of lawns up to 4,000 square metres. It features turf tyres to protect the lawn whilst packing a powerful Stihl EVC4000 OHV engine so you can glide around the corners of flower beds with ease. Switch from forward to reverse with a simple gear stick and turn on a dime with a tight turning circle. Hydrostatic transmission makes this model nippy and responsive. A 250-litre “dumper” grass catcher box is operated from the driving seat with a simple curved handle. Additionally, it can be converted into a mulching mower. This robust garden rider is a good medium size ride-on mower option.


  • Robust
  • Easy to drive
  • Responsive
  • Powerful engine


  • Mulching insert available but needs to be bought separately

FAQs: Best lawn mower

How to choose the best lawn mower

First, let's focus on the type of cutting blade. There are three types of cutting blade that each come with the own pros and cons.

A rotary lawn mower cuts the grass with a horizontal chopping action that results in a clean finish. Rotary lawn mowers operate well on uneven terrain and tougher grass. Rotary lawn mowers have a single blade that's mounted under the body of the lawn mower.

A cylinder lawn mower has cylindrical blades mounted at the front of the lawn mower, resulting in a fine cut. The blades cut in a scissor-like action and are set on a horizontal shaft on the front of the mower. The blades rotate vertically and cut against a fixed bottom blade. It gives a close-cut finish but needs completely even ground in order to be effective. The cut results in super short grass and is best suited to fine turf. For a quality finish, opt for a cylinder lawn mower, but bear in mind they don't cope well with tough grass or uneven ground.

Additionally, there are hover lawn mowers that create a cushion of air between the appliance and the grass. Easy to maneuvre and effective on uneven lawns, these lawn mowers are lightweight and don't have wheels. Hover mowers can be very effective on irregular-shaped lawns as they can move from side-to-side as well as forwards and backwards.

Unless you're maintaining the turf at Wimbledon, a rotary lawn mower is recommended as the cutting deck can be adjusted to cope with different heights of grass and a rotary lawn mower is easier to maintain.

Secondly, consider how you want your lawn mower to be powered. Again, each power source comes with their respective benefits and problems.

A push mower is great for a small garden that has an even surface. It's a good budget lawn mower option. Plus, you get all the pleasure of mowing a lawn and enjoying the scent of freshly cut grass, while getting a full body workout.

If you need a lawn mower to take some of the strain and you have a small-to-medium-size garden, opt for an electric lawn mower. Note the length of the power cable, which can vary from 10 metres to 20 metres. You can buy an extension cable if your garden is on the large side. Purchase an outdoor extension cable that's weather-resistant and made from heavy-duty materials. Additionally, opt for an extension cable with a wire thickness that's a minimum 14 gauge. A thicker wire will prevent overheating and cope with more power flow – therefore reducing the danger of the outdoor appliance overheating. In short, always use an extension cable that's designed for outdoor use and can cope with the wattage of your electric lawn mower.

Choose a cordless lawn mower if you have difficult areas of lawn to cut. This type of lawn mower is powered by rechargeable battery packs. They are great for a smaller garden and conveinient, but don't quite have the oomph of a corded electric or petrol lawn mower. The battery life is generally 30 minutes, plus they need time to recharge.

Finally, a petrol lawn mower is the best lawn mower for large gardens and can cope with stubborn grass and uneven terrain. However, they are not environmentally friendly and they require maintenance.

Features to look for in a lawn mower

Geoff Hodge from Garden Answers has helped us pop together a guide to the best lawn mowers for your garden – to keep your grass in tip-top shape.

Deck material: Strong, robust metal decks add to the overall weight. Non-metal decks, usually made from polypropylene, are lightweight, damage resistant and resilient.

Comfort handles: Soft, comfortable and height-adjustable handles make mowing easier on your back and hands, especially when cutting for a long time.

Carry handles: Well-spaced carry handles make the machine balanced, lighter and easier to carry.

Blade height adjuster: This must be easy to adjust and offer a choice of cutting heights. Most lawns should be cut 2.5-4cm (1-1½in) high for much of the year.

Clippings collection: Grass collectors cut down the time needed to look after the lawn. Larger collectors need emptying less regularly.

Grass combs: Side grass combs help ensure neat results along edges, fences, and walls.

Rear roller: This is needed if you want traditional lawn stripes. The heavier the machine and roller, the better the stripes.

Mulching function: Some mowers cut the grass so finely that you can leave the clippings where they fall.

What's the difference between a push and a power mower?

Gardens expert Geoff Hodge says: "One recent development in the world of battery-powered lawnmowers is the introduction of self-propelled mowers – previously only available with top-of-the-range petrol models. Self-propulsion makes mowing easier and more manageable because the mower pulls itself along, reducing effort and fatigue.

"Self-propelled lawn mowers are perfect for larger lawns and slopes. You simply walk behind the mower to control its direction. Because power is needed for this, the batteries won't last as long from a single charge as those used with an equivalent push mower."

What do I need to know about battery lawn mowers?

With battery power, you need to consider: the battery voltage (V) and amp hours (Ah).

Voltage - Higher voltage generally means greater power and performance, but the size and weight of the mower will impact this, too. Mowers with a higher voltage are better equipped to tackle long, wet grass.

Amp Hour - This is analogous to the size of a car's fuel tank; the larger the amp hours, the longer the battery will last between charges. Higher Ah batteries can tackle larger lawns before becoming flat. For instance, a 2.5Ah battery should cut up to 400sq m (480sq yd) on a single charge. However, more amp hours do not equate to greater power output.

Lithium-ion batteries charge relatively quickly – in as little as 30-40 minutes. Depending on Ah size, they'll run long enough on one charge to complete mowing. They can be recharged before they're flat and don't need to be fully charged before use. Plus, they won't lose charge in the shed over winter.

Geoff also recommends buying a second battery "if you want to mow a large lawn in one session".

Some mowers come with two, while others offer super-fast chargers. Mowers with the latest sensory technology can sense the load on the motor and operate at the optimum level for each task, boosting power for long/damp grass and extending battery run time during lighter cutting tasks.

What is cutting width?

Broader mowers tend to offer greater cutting width. A larger mower, with wider cutting width, reduces the number of passes needed to mow the lawn but may be heavier to carry and more awkward to manoeuvre.

As a guide:

Small lawn (up to 250sq m/300sq yd): 30-35cm (12-14in) cut width.

Medium lawn (250-580sq m/300-700sq yd): 35-43cm (14-17in) cut width.

Large lawn (more than 580sq m/700sq yd): 43-55cm (17-22in) cut width.

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Piper Huxley is a Homes, Garden and Wellness Product Writer for Modern Gardens Magazine, an all-rounder. When she’s not writing about houseplants, she’s tending to her own growing collection…

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