hand repairing lawn mower
Photo: Kenneth Chen
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Rotary or reel?
A rotary mower spins a blade on a vertical axis. A reel mower's blades spin on a horizontal axis. Reels cut cleaner than rotaries but aren't suited to large lawns.

How much do they cost?
Push reels are the least expensive, starting at $80.
Gas-powered mowers start at $130, battery-powered at $300, and robotics at $700.

How long do they last?
Most mowers will run 10 years or more with regular maintenance. Warranties are two to five years.

How much maintenance?
Most mowers need new or resharpened blades at the start of each season. Gas mowers require the most upkeep; push- reel mowers need the least.

Push it or let it propel itself?
The self-propelled option makes mowing about 20 percent easier but adds nearly
50 percent to a mower's cost.
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