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Top 5 riding mowers

Kori Ellis is an editor and writer based in San Antonio, TX, where she lives with her husband and four children. At SheKnows, she writes about parenting, fashion, beauty and other lifestyle topics. Additionally, Kori has been published i...

Mowers to keep your lawn looking its best

A riding lawn mower can make yard work a whole lot easier. If you are looking to buy a riding mower to keep your lawn looking its best, consider one of these top-rated machines at various price points.
John Deere X304 Lawn Tractor

John Deere X304 Lawn Tractor

Powered by an 18.5 HP engine, the John Deere X304 Lawn Tractor is considered one of the best available. If you want to invest in a high-quality machine, then this one is it. Recommended for mowing areas up to 2 acres, this heavy-duty lawn tractor delivers the maneuverability and quality of cut you'd expect from a top-quality riding mower. Available accessories include a rear bagger, mulching systems, front thatcher, front blade, tractor shovel, snow blower and more than a dozen different tow-behind accessories and attachments. Its engine satisfies the latest global noise and emissions restrictions. It features 4-wheel steering that makes driving it a breeze. Consumers rave about this lawn tractor's maneuverability, reverse ability, quality of cut, tight turning circle, strong construction and 4-year/300-hour warranty. You'll love all the little extras, from the tool tray and cupholder to the color-coded controls and high-back, fully adjustable set. John Deere X304 Lawn Tractor with 42-inch deck is $3,699 at Deere.com.

John Deere Z665 Zero-Turn Riding Mower

John Deere Z665 Zero-Turn Riding Mower

If you are looking for something with major power, consider the John Deere Z665 Zero-Turn Riding Mower. This riding mower features a 60-inch high-capacity mover and 27 HP V-Twin engine for some serious power, lower vibration and improved sound quality. If you have acreage, this riding mower could be the one for you. The electronic ignition contributes to fast starts, while the overhead engine valves allow it to breathe easy for fuel economy and power. Like most John Deere power mowers, the seat is comfortable and the controls are color-coded for easy identification. Reaching ground speeds of 9 mph, you'll have your large lawn mowed and trimmed in no time. This riding mower doesn't come cheap ($5,999) but it does come with a 4-year/500-hour limited warranty.

Husqvarna 24 HP 54-inch Yard Tractor

Husqvarna 24 HP 54-inch Yard Tractor

Another brand of riding mowers that is highly rated by buyers is Husqvarna. If you are looking for a large mower with a lot of power, along with ease of use, check out the Husqvarna 24 HP Yard Tractor. It features a 54-inch vented deck system with four-gauge wheels and more air flow for better cutting. Users like its wider step-through area, handy cup holder and hydrostatic automatic transmission. This powerful machine is priced at $2,900 at Sears and they are currently having a sale online. This Husqvarna yard tractor comes with a 3-year warranty. A mulch kit and other accessories are sold separately.

Craftsman 42-inch 17.5 HP Shift-on-the-Go Lawn Tractor

Craftsman 42-inch 17.5 HP Shift-on-the-Go Lawn Tractor

If you are looking for an economical riding mower that can get the job done, then turn to Craftsman. They offer a line of mowers ranging from solid, basic models to top-of-line mowers with all the bells and whistles. For a mower around $1,000, you can't beat the Craftsman 42-inch 17.5 HP Shift-on-the-Go Lawn Tractor, on sale right now at Sears. Its seven-speed Shift-on-the-Go transmission saves time by not having to stop, brake or clutch to increase speeds. The 42-inch deck offers adjustable cutting heights from 1-1/2 to 4 inches for the cutting performance and precision that you need. This riding mower has a tight 18-inch turning radius and adjustable speeds up to 5-1/2 mph. It features a convenient cup holder, low-back adjustable seat and 2-year full warranty backed by Sears In-Home Service. If you are looking for something a little more powerful, Craftsman also offers the 42-inch, 24 HP V-Twin Zero-Turn Riding Mower and the 54-inch, 26 HP V-Twin Briggs & Stratton Turn Tight Yard Tractor -- each for a little more than $2,000.

Snapper 28-inch 11.5 HP Riding Mower

Snapper 28-inch 11.5 HP Riding Mower

If you want a riding mower with a little less power, consider the smaller but highly recommended, Snapper 2811524BV 28-inch 11.5 HP Hi-Vac Rear Engine Riding Mower. This riding mower features a larger turning radius and less power than the other machines, but it's still popular among consumers. Priced at around $1,300, this riding mower features a recoil start only (no electric start), 5-speed on-the-go shifting and 5-position adjustable height of cutting. The deck sweeps your lawn clean of clippings as you go, and this riding mower has stand-on-end capability for easy storage.

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