Hopkins Machinery offer you the complete range and choice in lawnmowers for your garden. On this page we are going to explain all about the different choices you have available in lawn mowers generally.
There are four basic types of lawnmowers most available in electric or petrol:
Cylinder lawnmowers come with electric engines, petrol engines or the basic hand push model. The blades are twisted around a horizontal cylinder which cuts with a scissor like action against the bottom blade as the cylinder goes around. This type of mower gives the best cut (the crisp, sharp accurate cut you get on golf courses, bowls greens and cricket grounds). Cylinder mowers are suitable for level lawns where you want a really fine, short cut. This type of lawn mower comes in a variety of widths and normally have a roller fitted which leaves the classic “British Stipes” on the lawn at the end of cutting. Cylinder mowers often have a detachable grass collection box and the bigger models (such as those seen on stadium grounds) often have the option of trailed seats for the operator.
Rotary lawnmowers are the most popular mowers in the UK. They are extremely versatile and cope with a wide range of conditions on most types of lawn, rougher grass area’s and sloping banks (more commercial mowers are required for steeper banks). They normally have 4 wheels, or two wheels and a rear roller. Rotary mowers can be electric or petrol driven – usually with the option of being a push machine or with some form of drive (straight forward stop and go to more complex speed control / hydrostatic drives) if your lawn is fairly big area the best option is a mower with drive (self-propelled). On a rotary lawnmower the blades are one, long straight, horizontal blade. The grass is cut, goes through the deck and out through the back or side of the deck into a collection box or dropped straight onto the floor. Various options are available – collect the grass, mulch the grass and drop it on the floor, or just cut the grass and drop it on the floor.
This is the type of mower cuts the grass for you and are electric. They take the hassle out of mowing the lawn as they can be programmed to cut the lawn regularly within the defined area keeping it at a more constant length and mowing even when you are not at home. They are generally rotary mowers, and some can mow up to 5,000 square meters. These are great for anyone wanting a no-fuss way of keeping their garden looking neat and tidy, and to less-able gardeners who may struggle to push around a heavy mower. They tend to be more expensive than most mowers but in the long run work out being cheaper to run.
Hover mowers have no wheels, they literally hover over the surface of the grass. They are based on the principle of rotary mowers in that they have one, horizontal blade. Hover mowers are normally, small lightweight (compared to traditional mowers) mowers for small and medium sized gardens. They are often used to mow banks with. Hover mowers are great for a quick tidy up, but they do not provide a high-quality cut (this becomes obvious as the grass grows after it has been cut).
This is the type of mower that literally cuts through everything. Flail mowers are generally bigger, contractors / commercial mowers. They are used on overgrown area’s such as forest paths that have not been cleared for a long-time and are overgrown with shrubs and brambles, or area’s behind buildings or on yards that have become overgrown and need to be hacked back to get them under control again. Flail mowing is extremely aggressive - underneath the cover of the mower is a horizontal bar with lots of heavy duty blades (flails ) hanging off it, as the bar rotates the flails swing out and cut / mulch everything they come into contact with, leaving a fairly fine scattering of cut debris on the floor. Flail mowers are the slowest method of cutting and often once the area has been cut down, they are not needed a second time (as they did such a good job the first-time round). These mowers are usually mounted on a machine such as a tractor.
Generally lawnmowers come in small, medium and large. The size equates to the width of cut. Small tends to be around 16" (41cm), medium lawnmowers tend to be around 18" (46cm) /19" (47cm) and large lawnmowers tend to be about 21" (53cm)/24" (61cm). When you go over these sizes the lawnmowers tend to become ride on mowers / lawn tractors or heavy duty pedestrian commercial mowers.
The size of your lawn is the leading factor in deciding what size lawnmower you need, and also what type drive your mower needs – petrol, electric or push. As a general rule, push, hand propelled lawnmowers are used on small gardens, electric mowers are used on small to medium sized gardens and the petrol mowers are used for everything else (no trailing electric cable, self-propelled drive to help you cover larger areas and carry the weight of the grass bag as it fills). The other benefit of the petrol lawnmowers is the huge variety of choice in models – different combinations of cutting width, drive type, type of speed control, grass bag size and cutting capability (cut, collect, mulch, etc.). If you have a rather large area to cut, that is when you would consider a ride on mower.
First of all look at what type of grass you have growing on your lawn. A lawn with really fine ornamental turf needs frequent cuts to keep the grass short and looking its best. A cylinder mower is the perfect mower to get this type of grass looking its absolute best.
But most family homes have lawns made up of a mixture of ryegrass and a generous growth of weeds and moss. This kind of lawn is better looked after with a rotary mower. More versatile than cylinder lawnmowers, rotary mowers can cope with longer grass if you miss the weekly cut. They can cope with hidden objects in the grass (children’s toys, larger branches that have fallen off tree’s etc.) without causing extensive damage to the lawnmower. Many rotary lawnmowers can cope with cutting in the damp – to a degree (the mowers ability here is dependant, on the brand and model configuration you go for). Rotary mowers are the best type of mower to use on rougher grass too – paddocks, orchards (bigger ride on mowers for larger areas are best) or a naturalised bank where you only need to cut once every few weeks. Rotary mowers, with a rear roller are recommended where you want “British Stripes” on your lawn or your garden has a lot of ornamental beds / borders – as the rear roller allows you to cut up to the edge of the bed / border without the wheel of the mower down dropping into the bed and allowing the mower to scalp the grass edge.
Most of the petrol walk behind mowers we sell are fitted with either Stihl, Honda engines or Briggs and Stratton engines. Both of these brands manufacture wonderful, reliable, well-engineered engines. We are agents for Honda, Stihl, Briggs and Stratton, and so can offer full support for parts, servicing and technical advice. All of the engines are normally four strokes, using standard unleaded petrol (available from your local petrol station).
More and more people are looking at getting an electric lawn mower now that cordless lithium Ion battery versions are available. Battery powered technology has improved a lot in the past few years and most mowers powered by battery can handle the job of a petrol mower; however, you may need to have a few other batteries on charge to swap out. The advantage over petrol is that they do not need as much maintenance as there are fewer moving parts.
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Walk behind mowers tend to be either push (there is no drive and the mower only moves forward when you push it) or self-propelled (you pull in a handle on the handlebar to engage the drive and the mower drives it ‘self forward at a single consistent speed) or hydrostatic / Variable Drive (based on the principle of an automatic car - you pull in a handle on the handlebar to engage the drive and the mower drives it ‘self forward at whichever speed you choose).
Walk behind lawnmowers offer a variety of different combinations functions depending on which model you buy.
As a rule of thumb, you normally need to get your mower serviced once a year and most people usually get it done just before they start cutting in the spring. Servicing usually means to change the filters and lubricants in the engine, check engine settings and refine them if necessary. Also, to change or sharpen the grass cutting blade. If you have any other problems with your mower - mention them when you bring it in to get it serviced and we will normally tackle them during the service. Our workshop offers a very fast turnaround on mower repairs and servicing. We are happy to work on a wide variety of different brands of mower. If you are unsure if we cover the brand of your mower, please give our team a call on one of the following numbers
Newport – 01633 680 754
Brecon – 01874 623 322
The answer to this depends on which brand you choose. The minimum warranty cover for some brands is 6 months (this often applies to commercial users) and now with some brands the warranty cover extends up to 7 years. The warranty cover normally only continues into the next year if you have mower serviced each year. Please ask to see warranty Terms & conditions before purchase as they are different with each manufacturer of our kit.
At Hopkins Machinery we have extensive knowledge about mowers available in general, and can advise you on the right mower for your requirements. We carry a wide range of stock of the smaller, walk behind mowers (new machines) , and rarely have any used walk behind mowers for sale, but in the bigger ride on mowers we offer new and used mowers – both petrol and diesel. All you need to do is call us – and we can help from there.