Top Tips for Driving Zero-Turn Lawn Mowers
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Finding a great zero-turn lawn mower is wonderful, but do you know how to use it properly? Many landowners make the investment but don’t understand what’s required of them while mowing the lawn.
Take time out of your schedule to learn the intricacies of this machine and start using it appropriately. The results are going to be impressive and well worth the effort.
Here are the most important tips to keep in mind while driving a zero-turn lawn mower.
1) Take a Test Drive
Before doing anything else, it’s time to take a short test drive around the lawn.
A test drive includes understanding how to operate the machine, where to go, and what to do if certain scenarios were to pop up (i.e. running animals). Do not assume you are going to have a grasp of these details and most people need time to learn. Even experts start reading through manuals and take test drives when new machinery is added to their arsenal of tools.
2) Learn the Controls
Along with taking a test drive, you will want to understand how the controls work.
Remember, a zero-turn lawn mower is not going to be the same as a traditional machine. It is going to have varying controls and each brand is going to have its own approach to the concept. With this in mind, you want to take the time to learn how to operate the machine properly. Even if you have had the opportunity to sit on a zero-turn lawn mower, you should look to freshen up on those controls. It’s a good way to stay safe throughout the process.
3) Start in Small Areas
When it is time to start, you will want to go ahead and get the entire lawn done in one go. While this sounds like a wonderful idea, it is not going to work out well for you! Think about the learning curve that comes with these machines. This is why you need to remain patient and take your time with the new lawn mower. As you sit down to drive, look at a small patch of grass and work around it for a bit.
This will allow you to get the hang of things before you move towards the rest of the lawn.
4) Wear the Right Safety Gear
Safety gear is important while mowing the lawn and is something you should invest in immediately.
Do not take a chance while driving a zero-turn lawn mower because it can lead to serious bodily injury. As a result, you want to come prepared and make sure to have the right gear in place well in advance.
The gear should include safety glasses and a good pair of earmuffs.
The reason to go ahead and invest in solid eyewear is to make sure glass clippings don’t get lodged in your eye socket. It is not a nice experience and can cause a tremendous amount of discomfort.
5) Plan Ahead
The average person will sit down and assume it’s okay to mow the lawn as they please. This is not a good idea and is going to ruin your experience when things don’t work out. As a result, you should sit down and plan out a route that’s easy to follow and has logic behind it.
For example, you want to map out where the lawn mower is going to start and where it will finish. The reason to have all of this information is to make sure you don’t create odd patterns or miss spots because you forgot.
6) Don’t Rush or Panic
This is often ignored while a person sits down to drive.
They start to rush through the process and that’s when mistakes are made. For example, you want to go at a methodical pace that’s easy to follow and isn’t going to ruin the consistency of your finishing.
While the zero-turn lawn mower is good at staying consistent, it should still be run at a respectable speed. This will ensure things work out as planned and you don’t have to go over the same spots again because you rushed ahead.
7) Avoid Steep Slopes
Steep slopes should be mowed with the help of a traditional lawn mower.
The reason has more to do with whether or not it’s safe for you to operate on such an incline/decline. In some cases, a person can fall off and get injured, which is never the desired result in such a situation. This is why most people keep separate tools for those areas and don’t take the chance. However, this is a personal decision and one you will have to make after surveying the slope.
Keep these tips in mind and driving a zero-turn lawn mower is going to become a walk in the park!