They look cool but do robotic lawn mowers really work?

OK…they look really cool but do robotic lawn mowers work well enough to justify their rather steep pricetags?

Do robotic lawn mowers work

Do Robotic Lawn Mowers Work?

Everyone’s favorite pastime is mowing the lawn…..NOT!!!!

Did you know that there are now robots to keep your grass trimmed and you’re your garden looking well-manicured?

These robotic lawn mowers resemble tiny racing cars and glide around your lawn giving you time to take care of more important matters like taking a nap or enjoy a glass of ale…

If you are a professional gardener or need a mower for pro-sporting fields, can a machine that looks like a little Ferrari really do the job?

Robotic lawn mowers move around the garden in a random pattern (in a similar way to robot vacuums). The issue with this is that it is not possible to get those stunning straight lines that many proud homeowners love!

In honesty, grass cutting robots work pretty well but are really only worth the high price tags for very busy or exceptionally lazy gardeners!!

Actually, if you have a little time, a self-powered mower such as the EGO Power+ Cordless Lawn Mower is a much better choice as it does a perfect job, will give you the “cricket-style” straight lines, and costs a fraction of the price of a robotic mower.

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How do robot lawn mowers work?

Robot mowers are designed to cut little and often (approx 2-3mm per pass). This is the gentlest way to cut grass and it also reduces any moss from creeping into your garden.

They are powered by rechargeable batteries and come with a charging station which can be plugged into an outdoor outlet. After your green-fingered robot has finished its task, it will automatically return to the charging dock.

These kinds of mowers are more economical than their gas-powered counterparts, use less energy, and release no planet-destroying emissions.

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How do you prevent the robot mower from getting lost?

Autonomous mowers use a simple mapping system and are delivered with a reel of low-voltage wire. This wire is then placed around the perimeter of the area that you want the mower to work in. This gives the bot a kind of “invisible wall” which the unit will not cross.

If you happen to have flower beds, outbuildings, hot-tubs, or paths in your garden, you can use the wire to make new boundaries so you can keep special parts of your garden “off-limits” to the mower. When the mower reaches the boundary wire (or an obstacle), tiny sensors are activated which then cause the robot mower to select a new route around the obstacle.

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How do robot mowers perform on uneven surfaces?

These machines are really only built for fairly flat surfaces. Lawn robot manufacturers claim that gradients up to 35 percent can be handled by their machines. A point to note, however, is that the steeper the angle the faster your battery will run out.

Our biggest gripe with robot lawn mowers is that the wheels can get stuck in holes or divots so it is necessary to fill in any depressions or you could set the boundary wire around the particular areas. Higher end mowers can rock themselves back and forth until they get free of the hole/depression in the grass.

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Which is the best robotic mower for me?

The key factor when choosing a mower is the size of your lawn. Larger mowers have wide cutting areas and cover a lot of ground in no time.

The best thing to do is to estimate your mowing area and then spend a few minutes investigating the models which are best suited to your size of the property.

You should also consider the gradient of your lawn. Again, a quick look at the manufacturer’s website will allow you to make the right choice.

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Are robot lawn mowers noisy?

The robot mowers featured in this article all run on electricity so they are not noisy.

They are virtually silent with a gentle hum at most. In fact, many fans of robot mowers run their machines overnight (without annoying the neighbors) and enjoy waking to a freshly cut lawn!

Using apps, these mowers can be from anywhere with an internet connection….with high-end models, you can even adjust the cutting height from wherever you may be!!!

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Are they easy to program?

Yes, the three mowers featured in this article have easy to understand controls which can be programmed from the onboard panel, or remotely via Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and any kind of smartphone.

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Do they get damaged when it rains?

No, these machines are designed to work in all conditions. Many of today’s mowers have built in rain sensors which command the mower to return to its base until the rain stops.

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Can robot mowers cause injuries?

We haven’t heard of any incidents involving these types of products.

They’re designed with safety as the first priority and when tilted or lifted, the mower automatically switches off.

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Someone will steal it!!!

Manufacturers aren’t daft……robot lawn mowers are fitted with anti-theft systems (such as PIN numbers) which must be entered before use.

With the Husqvarna’s Automower’s app, you can set up an alert if for every time the mower is moved. You can also see your mower’s location for extra peace of mind.

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Is there much maintenance for robotic lawn mowers?

No, these machines are made to be used for people with no mechanical or technical knowledge.

Robot mowers are electric so have no oil, petrol or spark plugs that will need replacing.

Obviously, you will need to replace the cutting blades every 3 to 12 months (depending on use) and also the boundary wire will need to be easily replaced if it breaks.

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How much do I need to spend?

Here’s the downside! The cheapest “decent” robotic lawn mower will set you back a bit over $900! For this, you can be the proud owner of a funky WORX WG794 Landroid. The Landroid uses a 28V rechargeable battery and has no carbon footprint!

At the top end of robotic lawn mowers is Husqvarna. The Husqvarna Group is a Swedish company that specializes in outdoor power products such as chainsaws, trimmers, tractors, and mowers. Their highest price model on Amazon is the Husqvarna 967646405 Automower 450X which is priced at over $3K!!!

But you certainly don’t need to shell out that much!!!….. If you are looking for the best value top end machine, we recommend the Husqvarna 967622505 Automower 430X which is just as good as the 450X but about a thousand dollars cheaper at Amazon (at time of writing)!

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So should I buy a robotic lawn mower?

They’re certainly not cheap but after the initial outlay, a robot mower will only cost around $20 per year to run.

An important point to note is that these machines are not for hacking through tall grass and weeds. They are meant to be used regularly to keep your lawn under control. If your grass is too long, you’ll have to cut it the “old-fashioned” way before you can let your bot get back to its job!!!

Some people love the ritual pleasure of mowing the lawn, and would never be deprived of their calming pastime, but for the more “techy” types that are in always in a rush, robot lawnmowers are now competitive enough in price that they are a worthy alternative to petrol lawnmowers.

In our opinion, unless you are “gadget-crazy”, you would be better off with a self-propelled gas mower like the brilliant EGO Power+ Cordless Lawn Mower.

At a fraction of the price of a robot mower, the EGO lawn mower will do a much better job and you’ll also get a little heart-strengthening exercise while you’re at it!!!

A big thanks to Panasonic DMC-Fz200 for our featured image.

If you enjoyed this article, you might also like to discover the quiestest robotic vacuum cleaners from our tech section.