Honda or Toro (Comm units only)

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by P&C Lawn Care, Jan 22, 2008.

  1. P&C Lawn Care

    P&C Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 373

    I need a new 21 mower and have ran commercial Honda's (HRC216's)for as long as I can remember, at least HR21's (back in 1987). I can't decide between a new commercial Honda or a new commercial Toro (then I have to choose between Honda or Kaw engine). My wife says why change, Honda's have what we have always used and are very reliable and cut excellant. I say this is true, but I am curious about the Toros. Pro's and Cons? Price is about the same or may vary by about $100, but not a deciding factor. I really like the hydrostat on the Honda's and like the shorter handles on the Toro. I searched the posts but didn't see much in the forums about H vs T. There are no other brands being considered.
     
  2. RGM

    RGM LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Baltimore Md
    Posts: 979

    honda has the best engine
     
  3. jklawns

    jklawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 77

    I love my honda I bought this summer it is the commercial unit and it does a fantastic job. I mostly mulch and the dual blade does an excellent job of dispersing the heavy growth and leaving an emaculate cut. I am cutting mostly bermuda, zoisa, and fescue. The bagging of course is second to none. It packs the bag full and does not leave anything on the grass. Overall Honda fixed the problems they were having with mulching and the bagging is still great. As far as the bars I like the handle bar the honda has but that is my personal preference.
     
  4. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 2,994

    This is yet another equipment issue that will come down to dealer support. You like both, but you seem to like Honda a little more. If the dealer is good, then go for it.
     
  5. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,362

    I have my reservations about the left foot operated 3 speed shifter on the Toro. I have never used one but if it's anything like my older 3 speed Toro that basically requires you to disengage the drive lever to shift I think it would be a PITA. Any left foot 3 speed users here? How does this work exactly?

    I have my reservations about the left foot operated 3 speed shifter on the Toro. I have never used one but if it's anything like my older 3 speed Toro that basically requires you to disengage the drive lever to shift I think it would be a PITA. Any left foot 3 speed users here? How does this work exactly?

    I leaning towards a Honda myself since they can bag better and have the hydro drive.

    Toro does make a commercial Personal pace 6hp Kawi http://www.toro.com/professional/lce/wpm/pt21/index.html

    Personal pace is my favorite 21" drive since there is no monk eying with levers when mowing. Just walk and go.

    I keep hearing the Hondas are great until they break then they get really expensive to fix? What has been your experience?
     
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    From my own experience I think Toro makes the best Wb's but that's Toro's specialty, and I don't think their Z's or 21's are all that.
    If it were me, for a push mower I'd get the Honda.
     
  7. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,329

    I have a Honda that is probably 10 years old and like it a lot.....but I am not sure about the new hydro. That guy in Dallas that was running a bunch of Honda units was upset. And every time I am in at the Dealer I see a bunch of those units in for repair...
     
  8. grass-scapes

    grass-scapes LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,552

    Ive had to fix the drive on my HRX216 (older model) 2 times, each time over 200 bucks. I just bought a new one last week and I can't believe how much they have changed. Instead of the 2 speed transmission, it is completely variable. The top of the engine is now plastic as opposed to the metal on mine, but it has a "bumper" on the front now which protects the deck a little better. Its still very heavy, but a good machine. I never liked the mulch quality on my old one.
     
  9. barcode148

    barcode148 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 86

    go for the toro and dont look back. i purchased a toro 22188 model which is a kaw kai with bbc at the end of last year. as far as the left foot drive system, it doesnt make a difference. the single bar can be feathered in order to recieve a different speed. along those lines you really wont need to because, at least in my area, even in slightly damp conditions, the mower can be operated at full speed in 3rd gear. if you have any questions ill be glad to help out any way i can.
     
  10. P&C Lawn Care

    P&C Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 373

    HRX units are not commercial. Only HRC216's are commercial. HRC216's are only available in two versions: Hydrostat and push. I don't think many dealers will sell strictly push mowers for commercial use. The new Honda engines have a metal shroud instead of the plastic one, I am glad to see they changed that. I have a 1994 HRC216 that still mows great, I put some double blades on (Mulch kit) it it mulches fairly well. Overall I have had NO MAJOR PROBLEMS with Honda commercial 21" mowers and would never ever think of not using them. I am just thinking that maybe I would like to try Toro and have both brands on the trailer. I tried using a homeowner type Honda mower one time , but they just don't take the abuse (getting on and off a trailer) and didn't cut as well as the HRC models. I only have one mower that is not commercial, I bought it from an elderly customer. It is an older HR215 with a metal top and built pretty close to an older HRC. It doesn't have steel wheels and I think it may only be a 5 hp engine. But overall it is a little bit lighter and cuts excelant. Right now it is used as a back up mower in case something else breaks. I mow my own yard with it and my daughter uses it to mow the neighbors yard too.

    I agree that Toro is TOPS on 32 and up walk behind mowers. I really like the t-bars.
     

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