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How fast does a riding lawn mower go?

How fast does a riding lawn mower go
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A riding mower is a cut above the competition when it comes to speed, but how fast does a riding lawn mower go? Riding lawn mowers enable you to fast-track your way to a pristine lawn, making them the perfect piece of equipment for larger plots. The riding design puts you in the driving seat and gives you the ability to cover ground quickly and save time.

Depending on the model, a riding lawn mower can accelerate up to eight miles per hour. However, it's worth keeping in mind that faster is not necessarily better. We’ll walk you through other considerations you’ll want to weigh up against speed. We also speak to the experts about the scenarios when you might want to slow down for the best results. 

Check out our guide to the best riding lawn mowers (opens in new tab) to help narrow down your choice. Not sure which lawn mower model is right for you? If you’re on a budget, don’t miss our guide to the best electric lawn mowers (opens in new tab). On the other hand, if you want a model that will take care of the hard work for you, you may want to invest in one of the best robot lawn mowers (opens in new tab)

How fast does a riding lawn mower go?

What the expert says…

Faster is not always better. “While mowing faster will get the job done quicker, you may not be happy with the results. Mowing speed should be adjusted to the conditions of your grass and the quality of results desired,” advises Andy Massignan, Product Director for the Residential Lawn Portfolio at AriensCo (opens in new tab).

Want results pronto? A riding lawn mower is an efficient way to tackle larger plots. Even better, they take the hassle out of hills and free up your time so you can sit back and admire your handiwork. But how fast does a riding lawn mower go? “A tractor style riding mower typically has a maximum speed of about 4 mph while a zero turn lawn mower (opens in new tab) has a typical maximum speed of 7-8 mph,” says Andy Massignan, Product Director for the Residential Lawn Portfolio at AriensCo (opens in new tab)

However, speed isn’t everything. You’ll want to weigh up other considerations such as your budget when choosing the model for you. If you’re looking to do your bit for the planet, check out the zero-emission models, which are a green choice. They also tend to be quieter – your neighbors will thank you.

In certain scenarios, you’ll want to slow down to achieve the perfect cut. With damp and heavy or very thin grass, be sure to reduce your speed to avoid missing blades.

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Louise Bond is a UK-based writer specializing in health and wellbeing. She has over eight years of experience in management within health and care and brings this passion and expertise to her writing. Louise has been published in The Guardian, Live Science, Fit & Well, Tom’s Guide, Planet Mindful, Breathe, and Psychreg. She is at her happiest when she is out in nature, whether that’s on an invigorating hike or pottering in the garden.

With contributions from