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Finding The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower In 2021

Last Updated: 15 June 2021

A dedicated gardener deserves to enjoy the process of manicuring the lawn with the best small riding lawn mower. Most people end up giving up on their traditional mowers not because their heart isn’t in it, but because the whole experience is spoilt by the amount of work that some of these lawnmowers require to operate. That is why, to rekindle your relationship with gardening, we would recommend you switch to a small riding lawn mower. The mechanism that is used to work these riding lawn mowers is similar to that of a car. This means that they are far more convenient to use, start without much effort, require less physical strength to work with and end up covering a large area in a short time.

In this article, we take a look at the best riding lawn mowers available in the market and give our recommendations depending on users' needs and requirements. Furthermore, we shall cover all the fundamental aspects of the products and give you a thorough guide as to how to go about buying one. Additionally, we also divulge our secrets regarding how we went about reviewing these top rated small riding lawn mowers.

Home Maker Guide created for informational purposes only. Thus, we neither endorse you in any way to buy specific products in our reviews, nor making you act like it’s written in our guides. We are reserving the rights for you to make your personal decision.



Editor-in-Chief of the Home Maker Guide
Finding The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower In 2021

Top 4 Best Small Riding Lawn Mower: Comparison Chart

Best Overall - Craftsman T225 Briggs And Stratton Gold Gas Powered Riding Lawn Mower Review

Those who already have used Craftsman products before would be well aware of their manufacturing prowess. The company is amongst the top developers of riding tractor mowers and has never failed to deliver top quality products. Those who want to get a sterling landscaping experience this season would do well to check out this gas-powered mini riding lawn mower. It’s driven with a 19HP engine and can move in both forward and reverse directions with ease. Add to that the ability of a 46-inch cutting deck that cuts, trims, clips the grass in a single sweep, and you have yourself one of the most convenient tools to work with.

The transmission is controlled by the foot, which allows users to maneuver it swiftly contributed further by its large wheels. All the comforts of the user are taken into account while building the driver seat, which is highly padded and very comfortable. The small riding mower starts fairly quickly and efficiently with just a turn of the key, which is made possible by its ReadyStart technology.

Those who want the ability to maintain their lawns even after sundown can take advantage of the headlights mounted at the front. This US-based company provides a 2-year warranty for any manufacturing defects that might occur. During this time, the users can get in touch with the customer agents and avail their service at no additional cost.

This gas-powered small riding lawn mower by Craftsman is the best product that one can find due to the power and convenience it provides. Its ability to go in both directions, as well as its efficient cutting deck, are two of the most prominent features that have made this the ideal seated lawn mower that one can get.

Why We Like It

  • 19HP gas engine
  • Comfortable seat
  • Amazing maneuverability
  • 2-year Warranty
Best For Hills - Husqvarna Z254 Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower Review
20 Reviews
Best For Hills - Husqvarna Z254 Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower Review

Among the top lawn mower brands, Husqvarna is perhaps the most well-known one and for a good reason too. Their products are a class apart and surge ahead from other competitors in terms of design and utility. This product is specially designed to be the best small riding lawn mower for hills. It has a powerful 26HP engine, which ensures that users get enough strength without making it a noisy affair. One can go up to 6.5mph with this compact riding lawn mower.

Its 54-inch cutting deck is constructed from strengthened steel, which gives it durability and strength and cuts around 2.8 acres of grass per hour. One can expect consistent cuts from the mower since it is equipped with Air Induction technology. The wheels of the mower are quite flexible and are quite hard to puncture. The driver's seat is very comfortable, which brings back the fun into landscaping.

The efficiency of its operation is furthered, boosted by its automatic brake system, which allows one to park with ease. It doesn’t require a lot of maintenance and includes various other features. These include a guard for the rear engine, a footplate, and a control panel. All these features together make this the best small zero turn mower.

Small lawn tractors such as the ones developed by Husqvarna are designed to provide top-notch mowing capabilities. This product is a true reflection of that due in no small part to its power, state-of-the-art technology utilization, and the delivery of a comfortable mowing experience on the whole, especially for hills.

Why We Like It

  • 3.5 gallons tank capacity
  • Maintenance-free
  • Air induction technology
  • Comfortable Seat
Best Value For Money - Snapper Classic Rear Engine Riding Mower Review
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Best Value For Money - Snapper Classic Rear Engine Riding Mower Review

Those who are looking for cheap small riding lawn mowers would do well to give Snapper mowers a go. This product is designed for lawns of all sizes, as it can work well in most situations. Its 11.5 HP of power makes it the best lawn mower for small yard that one can find in the market today. It’s simple yet elegant design makes this a highly convenient mower. Its cutting deck ensures that one can mow a large area in one go, making it an irresistible option under 20 hp riding lawn mower.

For the comfort of the driver, the mower has sufficient legroom, easy-to-reach controls and a vertical stand-on-edge capability. It also has a highly functional rider capability, which makes it one of the best rear engine riding mowers on offer.

For storage, one can make it stand on edge vertically and requires very little space and maintenance. The product is quite cheap compared to other options and will fit fairly well in your budget.

Small lawn tractors such as this are ideal for use on lawns of varying sizes and cut huge areas of grass with ease. Users who prefer total control over their machines in terms of maneuverability, quality cutting decks, and speed options will find this product uniquely irresistible.

Why We Like It

  • 28-inch cutting deck
  • Easily controlled
  • 5 speeds
  • Height adjustable blades
Best Construction And Connectivity - Husqvarna Ts354xd Kohler Lawn Tractor Review

Last but not least, our review is another top-notch product by Husqvarna. It is one of the most heavy-duty small lawn tractors that we have on our list, which has unique cutting capabilities that are a class apart. Its cutting deck is quite versatile, and the engine is powerful enough to get the mowing done in a relatively short period of time. The transmission is of a commercial grade, and the tires are quite wide and durable that can take on rough handling without overheating. This small riding lawn mower with bagger has amazing traction but doesn’t in the least damage the lawn.

The overall experience of using this seated lawn mower is made even more enjoyable thanks to the comfort and the ergonomics that the machine provides. The option of smart connectivity provides for a superior driving and mowing experience. The service, as well as failure alerts and warnings, ensure that users do not run into the trouble of mishandling the tractor, thereby reducing maintenance and increasing productivity.

Users who are looking for a durable electric riding lawn mower will not find a better option than this product. Its smart connectivity, construction, and the overall cutting efficiency and comfort are its main selling points, which make it the best small riding lawn mower.


  • Cruise Control
  • Commercial-grade engine
  • Electric blade management
  • Durable steel construction
  • Smart connectivity


  • A little on the expensive side

Buyer’s Guide: All You Need To Know About The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower

Now that we have reviewed the top four products available in the market for lawn mowing let’s take a brief look at all those elements that should be considered before making a decision. Here, we will go in-depth into the various aspects that make up the best lawn mower.


One of the easily recognizable benefits includes the ability to ride the lawn mower. Since users are not required to walk behind the mower, they can quickly get the work done without expending much labor. Their benefits become most palpable if one needs to mow a huge yard. They are better at their cutting capabilities than push mowers, and the decks can be adjusted to meet the users’ requirements.

What Size Riding Mower Do I Need?

What Size Riding Mower Do I Need

There are various sizes available though your decision to select one over the other should be made depending mostly on the size of your lawn. The best lawn mower for small yard is a zero turning mower. These allow you to cut through shrubs and thick grass in a single sweep. For more extensive lawns, a tractor type mower would be better suited.

What Is The Best Brand Of Lawn Mower?

Though there are many contenders, the best small riding lawn mower brand has to be Craftsman. All its products offer a high-quality experience that is unparalleled in the industry. Getting a Craftsman product will ensure that you won’t have to fret much over maintenance and servicing and can mow all types of grass without any hassle.

How To Choose The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower?

How To Choose The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower

There are various features that one should be on the lookout for when getting a lawn mower. Let’s take a look at the most important ones that will ensure that you make the correct decision.


The speed of the mower will determine how much time one can save while mowing. For these purposes, zero-turn mowers are one’s best bet since they provide speeds up to 8mph, which is quite fast in and of itself. Lawn tractors, on the other hand, are work-horses but are not the fastest of the lot.

Deck Size

Deck size determines how much the best mulching mower can cut in a single sweep. These range from 42 to 54 inches. To know the size that would fit your needs, divide the deck size with 12, and get the approximate area that the mower can cut. A 54-inch mower can cut around 4.5 acres of lawn which is more than enough for residential purposes.

Cut Width

Cut Width

The range of the cutting width of a riding lawn mower can be anywhere between 26 and 66 inches. This essentially translates to cutting a lot of grass in a small amount of time. However, larger cutting width does not equate to better results. For instance, a mower with a small cutting width is ideal for a lawn that has a lot of tricky areas and tight spots.

Engine Type

There are three different types of engines that can be found in the best small riding lawn mower 2021. These are rear engine, tractors, and zero turning radius mowers. Users who cherish a relaxing mowing experience, the best rear engine riding mower, is ideal. Those who are looking for something a little more robust, a lawn tractor would be advisable. Lastly, those who want to finish off their work quickly would do well to get a zero turning radius mower.


Electric mowers are suitable for smaller yards and are very easy to store. They utilize the best lawn mower batteries and are simpler to maintain. The rechargeable lithium-ion batteries may only run for small periods, but they do provide enough power to cut grass just as well as any other type.


Finding The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower In 2021

Gas fuelled models have been around for a long time and for a good reason too. They provide a lot of cutting power that can clean up a yard in no time and are cheaper than their electric counterparts. However, one would require spending on fuel and maintenance more than other models.

Engine Power

The engine power can make a big difference in determining how fast your mower gets the job done. A single-cylinder engine provides decent amounts of power for a small yard while a twin-cylinder engine is ideal for large yards. A 20 hp riding lawn mower has sufficient power to take care of most mowing requirements.

Fuel Capacity

The fuel capacity of a mower would define how long the machine will run before it is required to refuel. It is better to opt for a mower that is more energy-efficient than one that is inefficient but has a large fuel capacity.


Safety is a crucial aspect to consider when checking out small riding lawn mower reviews. The operation of the lawn mower will dictate how safe it is to use. It is essential to check the details as to whether one can easily access the different parts of the machine, especially getting hold of the fuel tank. Other than that, the warranty should be taken into account to see if a safety net is provided to fall back upon in case something goes wrong.


Finding The Best Small Riding Lawn Mower In 2021

Transmission relates to the transfer of power from the engine to the wheels. There are three ways in which this is done – manually, automatically, and by a hydrostatic transmission. The first requires you to select the speed manually, the second allows you to change speed with a pedal, and the third allows you to change the speed with a pedal but instead uses fluid to do so.


Though these riding lawn mowers do not come cheap, one can expect high variability of the cost. It is essential to get one that fits your needs as well as your budget. An expensive machine that requires little maintenance would generally be better than a cheaper one that requires maintenance regularly and isn’t fuel-efficient.

Best Small Riding Lawn Mower Types

Rear Engine Riding Mower

Now, let us delve deep into the different types of riding mower types that one can expect to choose from.

Rear Engine Riding Mower

These mowers, also known as the smallest riding lawn mower, are much smaller in size compared to other types and are suitable for smaller yards. These models are relatively cheaper and can be stored with ease. However, the weight of the engine, as well as the placement of the rider is on the rear, which makes going uphill a challenge.

Lawn/Garden Tractor

These are the most popular models and are chosen chiefly for the overall benefits that they provide. With proper weight distribution and huge cutting capacity, these are ideal for bigger yards and ensure efficient mowing.

Zero-Radius Mower

Zero-Radius Mower

These are similar to rear engine types since their engine is situated at the back. However, their twin engines are better equipped to handle rear wheels and mow easily. Those who have a lot of obstacles in their yards would benefit the most from this type of mower.

Mulching Mower

Mowers can mulch grass clippings as well and ensure that the nitrogen-rich waste returns to the ground. However, it may not work well with tall grass, especially after a prolonged summer season.

Verdict and Recommendations for 2021

Mulching Mower

For the upcoming season, we would highly recommend you check out the products reviewed here, especially the Craftsman T225 Briggs And Stratton Gold Gas Powered Riding Lawn Mower. It is easily the best small riding lawn mower 2021 has to offer for one’s lawn and lawn manicuring needs. Not only does it provide all the right features that one would require for a small to a medium-sized yard, but it also has a built that can last you for many years.

Various upcoming technologies have the potential to change the entire structure of these machines and overhaul the lawn-mowing practices completely. For more information on the subject, check out the homemakerguide.com website where we review these products frequently, and update our list.

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To start the engine, sit in the seat and press the brake. Engage the parking brake and shift the gear to neutral. Thereafter, put the throttle into choke position and turn the key to the right. While releasing the choke, twist the throttle into a fast position, and the mower should start.
Depending on the built of the mower, expect these machines to last anywhere from 8 to 10 years. If not maintained adequately, this life expectancy can come down to 4 or 5 years.
The best way to mow your lawn is to do it in rows. The direction of the rows is also essential, and if your mower is wider, it is best to mow horizontally.
The single most probable reason for this is blade vibration. It is best to replace the blades and the belt to reduce vibration since a worn belt won't be able to spin the edges properly.
For large mowers, one can use regular motor oil. However, for smaller mowers with two-stroke motors, small engine oil and gasoline is recommended, mixed in the ratio 32:1 or 50:1.
How We Tested

To bring you the best products, our team of experts started off by assessing the comfort of the driver and the easy-start features. Thereafter, we checked how well the products fair in their respective model-type categories and the amount of work that they could handle. The speed at which they moved, as well as the cutting size, was further analyzed to sift the best from the rest. Lastly, any additional features, including price, build-quality, and warranties, were compared to bring you the best small riding lawn mower.

Our team of experts used the top tool on our list for over a month to see how it functions. Its reverse mowing ability completely overhauled our lawn trimming experience by making it easier to get out of trouble spots. Its high-back seat is heavily cushioned, which makes trimming a breeze. Finally, its quick-start feature never failed to deliver and worked like a charm every time. Being a complete package, we believe it is the best small riding mower that one can get.

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