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7 Best Zero Turn Mowers for 2024

Zero turn mowers are staggeringly useful for large gardens, and lawns with tight hedges. While they can’t quite get into every corner, its non-existent turning circle makes for incredible neat cuts and beautifully manicured lawns.

The zero-turn mowers included in this guide are all well-established and trusted at what they do, so before we share some of our best buys for 2024, let’s take a look at how, when, and why to use a zero-turn mower, and the benefits these clever tools can bring to your garden.

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Best Zero Turn Mowers

Product


Our Rating

Price

1. Toro Titan Max Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Toro Titan Zero Turn Lawn Mower
Premium Choice Zero Turn Mower

2. Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1-54 24 HP Zero Turn Mower

Cub Cadet 24 HP Ultima ZT1-54 Zero-Turn Garden Tractor

3. Bad Boy ZT60 Avenger Zero Turn Mower

Bad Boy Avenger ZT60 Garden Tractor

4. Toro Timecutter 54 in. Fab Deck Zero Turn Mower

Toro Timecutter Fab Deck 54 in. Zero-Turn Garden Tractor

5. Cub Cadet Ultima ZTX4 Zero Turn Mower

Cub Cadet ZTX4 Ultima Garden Tractor

6. Bad Boy ZT Elite Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Bad Boy Zero Turn Lawn Mower ZT Elite

7. Toro 42 in. TimeCutter Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Toro TimeCutter Zero Turn Lawn Mower 42 in.

What are Zero Turn Mowers?

Zero turn lawn mowers are designed to do turnarounds as smoothly as possible. Since it does not have any problems in making turns, the zero turn mower can cut a line pattern with ease.

Unlike other mower types that cut in a circular pattern and spend extra time finding uncut lawn edges, this one mows in a straight line to produce fast and clean cuts.

Moreover, a zero turn mower has a cutting deck that is capable of cutting tall grass and mulching the grass clippings without experiencing any clogging.

Some zero turn mowers can even cut the lawn at an impressive speed of 11 miles per hour. This is actually far above the usual mowing speed ranging between four to eight miles per hour.

A zero turn lawn mower has the engine located at the back of the operator seat. It makes quick and precise turns with a zero degree radius.

Zero turn mowers have steering wheels, although there are variants that have lap bars instead. Lap bars can be hard to get used to, but they often provide a comfortable grip.

See our comprehensive guide on how to operate zero turn mowers here. 

Best Zero Turn Mowers for 2024

1. Toro Titan Max Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Toro Titan Max Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Source: tractorsupply.com

Anyone who’s ever used a zero-turn mower out in the open knows how powerful they can be, and how efficient they are for large lawn management, but when it comes to domestic lawn maintenance, do you need a zero-turn mower?


Well, it really depends on your budget, and how concerned you are about corners. Zero-turn mowers are designed primarily to get right into the corners of large lawns and cut under the base of hedges and over grass borders.


Because of their large size, more durable cutting decks, and more powerful engines, they tend to be around 3x the price of a standard garden tractor, so while they make incredibly neat lawns possible for any gardener, it’s a practical cost decision you need to make: How much are neat corner worth to you?

Pros

  • Fully adjustable cutting height

  • Huge cutting deck (60”)

  • Key start

  • Zero-turn

  • 10 Gauge Steel Deck

  • Rear-wheel drive for traction


Cons

  • Expensive for a domestic lawn tractor

  • Petrol engine

  • Takes practice to drive zero turn mowers


2. Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1-54 Zero Turn Mower

Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1-54 24 HP Zero-Turn Garden Tractor

If you like the Cub Cadet offering but want a zero turn mower, this is a good option to consider. Priced affordably and with a high-quality build that’s made in the USA, this machine is pure performance and built to last.

The consistent cut technology makes cutting long, wet grass into a uniform, neat lawn, and the Smart-Choke technology makes it easy to start.

The 24HP/725cc Kohler 7000 Series V-Twin OHV 4-cycle engine features v-twin cylinders that reduce vibration for a smooth ride, and the seat and hand grips are designed for ergonomic comfort.

This zero turn mower can perform on any lawn, in any conditions, including dealing quickly and easily with wet, long grass, allowing you to adjust between 15 cutting deck positions between 1-4.5 inches.

If you’re worried about the weight of your zero turn mower or damage to your lawn, the 5 in. smooth tread front wheels pivot 180 without turf damage and the tractor is designed for stable balance.

It’s ideal for mowing lawns with slight rolling hills and obstacles in yards of up to 4 acres, and offers mulching capabilities.

If your area has a lot of hills then also check out our reviews of the best riding lawn mowers for hills to see which would best suit your needs. 

Pros

  • Good performance on long, wet grass
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • Easy to start
  • Made in the USA
  • Built to last
  • 3.5 gallon tank
  • automotive-grade corrosion resistance
  • Plenty of accessories (lawn striping kit, hauler cart, etc.)
  • 3-year / unlimited-hour warranty

Cons

  • Requires some assembly on arrival
  • No rollover protection

3. Bad Boy ZT60 Avenger Zero Turn Mower


Bad Boy ZT60 Avenger Garden Tractor

Bad Boy Mowers have become increasingly popular in recent years thanks to their high build-quality and performance.

Each mower gets a 112-point check before being shipped to customers, ensuring that every aspect of the mower has been professionally checked before it arrives at your door.

The 4-cycle 725 cc Kohler engine offers plenty of power at 25 horsepower, with a maximum forward speed of 7MPH.

It’s a zero turn lawn mower, so it’s easy to navigate around trickier areas of the yard, and the foot-assisted manual lift allows you to easily change between 13 cutting deck positions between 1.5-4.5 inches.

The 60-inch cutting deck is manufactured from high-quality fabricated steel and the adjustable Ogura PTO Clutch Brake Offers 100ft.lbs of torque for smooth blade engagement.

The 6.5 gallon fuel tank is also one of the largest on the market, making this zero turn mower ideal for large yards of 3 acres or more.

Pros

  • Made in the USA
  • Excellent build quality
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • Zero-turn
  • Large 6.5 gallon fuel tank

Cons

  • No mulching capabilities
  • Lowest mow height is 1.5 inches

4. Toro Timecutter 54 in. Fab Deck Zero Turn Mower

Toro Timecutter 54 in. Fab Deck Zero-Turn Garden Tractor

If you like the sound of the Toro Titan but are looking for something smaller and speedier, this is a great zero turn mower to consider.

With the same, market-leading MyRide suspension for comfort while you work and the same high quality build, this is a more compact zero turn mower that doesn’t compromise on performance.

The 10-gauge, 54-inch IronForged® steel cutting deck ensures years of reliable performance while the 2-cycle rear-wheel drive Kawasaki engine offers 726cc, 23 horsepower and a top speed of 7MPH to get the job done up to 50% faster than competing models.

The foot-assisted height adjustment allows you to effortlessly switch between 6 deck positions, cutting grass between 1.5-4.5 inches. The 3 gallon fuel tank is good for a small zero turn mower, making it ideal for smaller yards of 1 acre or more.

Pros

  • MyRide suspended operator platform
  • 10-gauge IronForged® steel cutting deck
  • Made in the USA
  • 3-year unlimited hour residential warranty

Cons

  • 2-cycle engine – must mix fuel
  • Only 6 deck positions
  • Lowest mow height limited to 1.5 inches

5. Cub Cadet Ultima ZTX4 Commercial Zero Turn Mower

Cub Cadet Ultima ZTX4 Garden Tractor

Built to the exceptionally high standards we expect from Cub Cadet and designed for high-performance, this is a great-quality zero turn mower for large lawns of 2-9 acres. 

Made in the USA, this zero turn mower can handle slight rolling hills and obstacles with ease, and you’ll mow in comfort thanks to the adjustable 20-inch high seat with padded armrests and a conveniently-located control center. 

Designed with an open-frame and removable floor pan, maintenance is fairly quick and simple, and the wide tires offer good traction and stability on slopes.

The 10-gauge AeroForce Max fabricated 48-inch steel cutting deck is adjustable to 17 positions between 1-4.75 inches, and the 5.5 gallon fuel tank means you can work for long periods without refueling. Thanks to the LED headlights, you can work in low light conditions with ease.

The hydrostatic transmission is commercial-grade for performance, and the 4-cycle 725cc Kohler engine offers 23 horsepower for a maximum speed of 8 MPH.

Pros

  • Zero-turn
  • Hydrostatic transmission
  • LED headlights for low light conditions
  • 10-gauge AeroForce Max fabricated steel cutting deck
  • 17 deck height adjustments
  • Ergonomic, adjustable 20-inch high back seat 
  • Rollover protective system (ROPS) standard
  • 4-year (500-hour) limited product warranty
  • Ideal for 4 - 9 acres

Cons

  • Mulching kit sold separately
  • Not California CARB compliant
  • Not ideal for small yards

6. Bad Boy ZT Elite Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Bad Boy ZT Elite Zero Turn Lawn Mower

With exceptionally sturdy build quality and an emphasis on high-quality, reliable performance, Bad Boy riding lawn mowers have become very popular in recent years.


Built in the USA, each mower gets a 112-point check before being shipped to customers. The Elite is a great middle-ground mower, combining performance and value for money.


With a 60-inch fabricated steel cutting deck, this machine offers one of the widest cutting widths on our list, and the zero-turn mechanism means it’s still very easy to maneuver.


The 4-stroke Kohler engine supplies 747cc and 26 horsepower for a 7MPH top speed, and the adjustable Ogura PTO clutch brake delivers 200 ft. per lb. of torque for smooth blade engagement.


Mowing height is adjustable to 13 different positions between 1.5-4.5 inches.

Pros
  • Adjustable left or right side deck lift pedal
  • Industry-leading 3/8 steel front forks
  • Independent front suspension
  • Suitable for large yards of around 5 acres in size
  • 2-year limited warranty
Cons
  • Bag kit not included
  • Not suited to small yards
  • Lowest mow height limited to 1.5 inches

7. Toro 42 in. TimeCutter Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Toro 42 in. TimeCutter Zero Turn Lawn Mower

This riding lawnmower is fast and efficient, capable of handling slopes, tough grass and bumpy terrain with ease.


The concept here is to make the job of mowing your lawn as fast as possible, and with a ground speed of 7MPH in mow mode, the Toro cuts down average mowing time by up to 50% compared to competitors.


It’s designed to be tough and durable, built with high-quality 50 grade steel and powered by a rear-wheel drive Toro V twin 708cc engine that supplies 22 horsepower.


Cutting heights are adjustable to 13 levels between 1.5-4.5 inches and the cutting width is 42 inches.


The 11-inch front wheels offer good stability on tougher terrain and slopes, and the 3-gallon fuel tank means fewer stops to refuel as you work. It’s ideal for lawns of around 2 acres in size.

Pros
  • Good build quality
  • Fast mowing time
  • Zero-turn
  • Cup holder and padded seat
  • 3-year warranty
Cons
  • Lowest mow height limited to 1.5 inches
  • No grass collection – only side discharge and mulching

Premium Choice Garden Tractor

Premium Choice Garden Tractor
Toro Titan Max Zero Turn Lawn Mower

Source: tractorsupply.com

Toro makes seriously powerful garden tractors. It kind of comes with the name (bull), but it’s their choice to release this domestic range of zero-turns that’s really turning heads.

Most gardeners with the privilege of riding zero-turn mowers, and the precise corners they can create, are limited to grounds keeping, and golf courses, but this more compact zero-turn mower is priced for the domestic market.

Toro Titan Max Zero Turn Lawn Mower more expensive than standard zero turn mowers, but it’s bigger, more powerful, and more precise, so it is well priced.

Just make sure you know your lawn, and understand the reasons for buying zero turn mowers because they are a big investment.

Zero Turn Mower Frequently Asked Questions

What are the disadvantages of zero turn mowers?

Zero-turn mowers typically have handle-bar steering, which can take a while to get used to. They also won’t get right into the tighter corners (you’ll need a front-mounted mower for that!).

How much should I pay for a zero turn mower?

If you’re wondering how much to spend on a new zero-turn mower, it’s worth considering how important brand recognition is. There are some great small brands out there, selling zero turn mowers for $2,500 in 2024, but most will set you back between $3,000 and $6,000 for the very best.

What are the most common problems with zero turn mowers?

Like all mowers, zero-turn mowers have their problems. The most common are generally related to steering, and overlapping cuts, which can lead to wavy rows in neat lawns. Generally, with practice, that will resolve itself.

What is the life expectancy of a zero turn mower?

For domestic use, cutting the lawn every week, or twice in summer, zero-turn mowers will last at least five years before their first service, and a well-maintained zero-turn mower should go on working for decades with good care.

What not to do on zero turn mowers?

Zero-turn mowers are heavy vehicles, and the driver is typically seated over the blade, giving a higher centre of gravity, and less stability. That means you should never mower across an incline, always up and down.

Can I use my zero turn mower in the rain?

We would never advise using any lawn mower in the rain, especially a zero-turn. Despite its even cutting, and low friction, the design of zero-turn mowers will never counteract the simple fact that wet grass will drag when cut, creating bald patches in your lawn.

Do zero turn mowers cut faster?

Zero-turn mowers cut at about twice the speed of standard ride-on mowers, as well as making faster and smoother turns. Ride-on mowers, to their credit, drive slower, but their blades spin more efficiently to create better-quality cuts. Zero-turn mowers still produce good cuts but shave time too.


Best Zero Turn Mowers

Make Mowing Easier Using the Best Zero Turn Mowers for 2024

If you’re still not sold on zero-turn mowers, don’t worry, we’ve got guides to riding mowers for hills, electric mowers, and even basic push mowers for smaller gardens. 

If, however, zero-turn mowers have won you over, just make sure to keep this guide in mind and find something with the right torque for your terrain, and steering you can work with. If you get that sussed, you’ll have the best zero-turn mower, ready to go, in no time.

About the Author Pat Moreno

Pat is our gardening tool expert here at Sumo Gardener. Working for many years as a private and commercial landscaper, Pat has used almost every type of gardening tool there is. Along with a vast knowledge for types of plants and putting together an amazing looking and maintainable garden, Pat developed a passion for gardening tools as he found that using the right tools vastly improved the ease and outcome of any landscaping job he undertook. When spending hours, days or years using a particular tool, you want to make sure you’ve got the best one for the job, and Pat is the right guy to guide us to the best gardening tools.

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