There can often be a fierce debate amongst zero turn mower users over whether front or mid mount mowers are the best. This argument often loses focus on the main point though, namely that there are advantages and disadvantages to both. Which type is referable will depend on the particular needs of the potential owner.
Some advantages of a Front-Mount Zero Turn Mower are:
- The front is easier to flip up which means easier access to the deck for things such as blade maintenance.
- Can get closer to and ever under trees, fences ,overhanging bushes etc. than with a mid-mount model.
- Many consider the ride to be a lot smoother due to the increased length.
- Front mount mowers are much better cutting inside corners than a mid mount (saving a lot of extra trimming).
- Stability on hills is usually much better on front mount models due to the longer wheelbase. This can be an important factor if such terrain will be encountered often by the user.
A disadvantage to the front mount is that debris can be thrown up (the importance of safety goggles when operating any mower cannot be stressed enough). Some seasoned operators fit a rubber skirt along the leading edge, which if done properly can eliminate this problem almost completely. Please note that this can be a safety hazard if not carried out by someone experienced in such matters.
Some advantages of a Mid-Mount Zero Turn Mower are:
- Sometimes significantly cheaper than front cut models.
- Much more compact. Smaller models will fit though obstacles such as gates etc.
- Easier to transport due to decreased length.
- Easier to store due to compact size.
- Ride can be comparable to a front mount if a model with 4 wheel independent suspension is chosen (at a slight premium mind you).
- They are usually considerably less expensive. A major factor in tough economic times, particularly for potential residential purchasers.
One disadvantage of the mid-mount type mower is that they cannot take the same range of attachments that a front mount can (with their PTO capabilities). This may be a downside to people who wish to use their mower for jobs beyond cutting grass.