View Full Version : Hydro or Belt Driven?

09-17-2007, 03:29 PM
I currently mow 12 lawns with my 36" hydro scag walkbehind. I want to go bigger. I never used a belt driven mower, but I can get a new toro 48" belt driven for $2250. Any advice is appreciated.

09-17-2007, 03:43 PM
I have never seen a Toro 48" belt drive for that cheap. Are you sure it is brand new? My dealer has 36" belt drive WB for around 3700.

09-17-2007, 03:49 PM
yeah, the dealer said 2250... he said it was a great deal, that he was sending them back to toro... that were to be demo models or something.

09-17-2007, 03:50 PM
how do you like the belt drives compared to the hydro? I have small yards, mostly 100' x 200' so I do alot of turning.

09-17-2007, 03:57 PM
Hydro all the way

09-17-2007, 04:08 PM
I prefer hydro. Much smoother, some of the belt models slip if you're cutting in the wet, but not too much of a problem with the Toro belt drives. Reversing is easier with hydro as well.Do you have a sulky for that WB? It will speed up your productivity a lot.

09-17-2007, 06:11 PM
Toro belt drives are good mowers and the 2007 models have the Turbo force deck w/ adjustable baffle. We use ours all the time without much of a problem even when its wet. I would however suggest if you mow alot of hills or need to back up alot the hydro might be the way to go. Whatever model you get make sure you get the Tru Trak sulky with it, you will love that thing.

09-17-2007, 06:22 PM
I would go with the Hydro. Much easier to control, no belts to slip, and they are just worth the extra money.

09-17-2007, 08:57 PM
If your gonna buy a new larger mower go with a hydro especially if it is your main mower.

09-17-2007, 09:10 PM
I agree. If you have hydro now, and you purchase a belt, you will be asking yourself. "What was I thinking?" No matter how good of deal you got, it will always be an issue of having been able to put that money toward a more suitabe machine for growth.

09-17-2007, 09:12 PM
ive got a belt drive on my 52". i am satisfied with it somewhat. it doesnt pull to well on hills. if your doing alot of turning, then get the hydro. with the hydro you have the capability of the TRUE zero turning radius.(like the riders)
with belt drive you can only go forward, and if your not careful, you'll dig into the grass with the tire when turning. with the hydro, youll reduce that. i test drove my friends hydro exmark 36" viking yesterday on ym grass and i wish i had that mower more than my toro even though i cut acre lots. hydro is more efficient and reliable. belt is just....belt......................idk JMHO

09-17-2007, 09:22 PM
I assume the yards you are doing are big or you wouldn't be going to the bigger unit. In which case the belt drive would be just fine for mainly straight line stuff. I am assuming Toro makes a good belt drive. The Scag hydro will cost more than twice that amount. Hydro are usually better when there is a lot of turing and backing.

09-17-2007, 10:21 PM
Hydro is the only way....If you wanna play you gotta pay! With my Toro T2 the more you squeeze the faster it goes, no gears or speed control levers to worry about.

09-17-2007, 10:33 PM
A hydo will obviously turn alot better. But is it worth the cost. $2250 is a hard deal to pass up IMO....I used gear drive wb's for quite awhile before I ever got into hydros. I still use my first Toro 36 gear wb. They really are low maintenance and reliable.
Just consider if its worth paying at least twice as much for the hydro.

09-18-2007, 12:19 AM
I dont think I've ever met some one who has ever converted from a hydro to a belt drive, think of it that way

09-18-2007, 01:37 AM
If budget a factor then belt, but if you have the cash, then definately hydro.

09-18-2007, 09:24 PM
Do not get rid of the hydro if you do a lot of turning, and hills too. you will regret it immediately.

09-18-2007, 09:30 PM
I do small yards with alot of manuvaring and some big wide open yards and i use a belt drive and it is easy to use once you learn how to do true zero turns with it. Im 14 and run a belt better than most adults. Its a matter of what ur used to. I have only ever seen one hydro walkebehind here in houston because they are so expensive. Everything is belt.

09-18-2007, 09:38 PM
I do small yards with alot of manuvaring and some big wide open yards and i use a belt drive and it is easy to use once you learn how to do true zero turns with it. Everything is belt.

there is no possible way to do a " true zero turn " with the belt drive. the gearbox is constantly going forward unless you reverse it manually. when turning, one tire stays put and the other one moves. it digs into the grass. i hate my belt drive. id go hydro. pas the offer up. theres many other better deals out there. what ive learned, is that you get what you pay for. youll regret it. dont do it. JMO :drinkup:

J&T Kiev
09-18-2007, 09:46 PM
If your on a budget a belt drive is a perfectly good machine. However, hydro is a third more productive, and has features absent from a belt drive. {instant true reverse, better maneuverability, no slipping belts in drenching wet working conditions, true Zero turn capability .} Hydro's are the more expensive but a more productive choice. For a primary mower, I wouldn't even consider a belt drive.