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Rider vs walk behind break downs

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by nelson279, Mar 10, 2003.

  1. nelson279

    nelson279 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 18

    I need some feedback! THANK SO MUCH FOR YOUR TIME......

    This is the dilemma. I do residential lawn cutting. Some of this accounts are pretty big. This year I need to buy another mower so now I have an opportunity to buy a Hydro 52" walk behind (comes with a sulky)or a 52" rider(sitting on it). The two are brand new...

    The rider is bigger, probably faster and of course more expensive; I would say about $4000 more than the walk behind even though made by the same manufacturer.

    1)Does a rider really justify the extra cost for what it can do? If so why?

    2) What are the advantages and disadvantages between a rider and a hydro walk behind? (comes with sulky so no walking).

    2)What can you tell me about maintenance cost between the two?

    3)Which one do you think will be braking down more frequently? (under same use conditions and operator)

    3)Do you feel that a rider is really cutting down on fatigue of the


    > Nelson Villa.
    > Care More Landscaping
  2. Mr.Wrench

    Mr.Wrench LawnSite Member
    from N.H.
    Posts: 65

    Hey Nelson, If I had the choice of the two I would pick the rider (Zero turn).
    Pro's- Better rate of cutting as far as Acres per hour.
    - Less operator fatigue.
    - requires about the same maintence as the walk behind,
    depending on manufacture.
    - better ability to use a collection system with.
    If you have alot of grass to cut and are on a timeframe, I would go with the rider. On the otherhand, are your accounts on a lot of hills? Are there alot of shrubs and trees to contend with on the majority of your accounts? How about the trailer size? Those are things to consider as well. What brand are you considering?
  3. Barkleymut

    Barkleymut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,117

    I have 2 WB's and 2 ZTR's. The Z's are definetly much more productive and much more comfortable. You will wonder how you ever got along without them. As mentioned they don't handle hills quite as well as WB's. They also cause a little more turf damage when the grass is stressed from drought or in extremely wet conditions. It is harder but not much more so to change the blades on a Z. The Z also consumes about 50% more gas per hour. But since you will be done at least 50% quicker you will likely not see much difference in your fuel bill. A Z should pay for itself in no time.

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