Best Riding Lawn Mower for Hills
Photo by Ingo Doerrie

Riding lawn mowers are very expensive. With this in mind, you should make sure that you take your time and consider all of your options. This is the best way to ensure that you’re going to get the most out of your money. Simultaneously, you have to think about the layout of your property. If you have a lot of hills, you should know that many lawn mowers aren’t going to cut it. You need to make sure that you get the best mower for hills. Otherwise, the mower might struggle to get the job done.

5 Best Riding Lawn Mower: Quick Comparison

Best Choice
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Best Price
Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower
Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34" Zero Turn Lawn Mower
Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52" Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower
Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34" Zero Turn Lawn Mower
Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52" Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Engine
26 HP (845 cc)
12 HP (~382 cc)
19 HP (~618 cc)
23 HP (~ 725 cc)
24 HP (780 cc)
Max speed
6.5 MPH
4.25 MPH
6 MPH
7 MPH
N/A
Cutting deck
54-inch
30-Inch
34-inch
52-inch
61-inch
Item weight
678 pounds
336 pounds
425 pounds
871 pounds
770 pounds
Reviews
13 Reviews
251 Reviews
5 Reviews
21 Reviews
4 Reviews
Rating
Prime
-
-
-
-
-
Price
$2,899.95
$1,270.99
$2,799.00
$3,099.00
$5,299.00
Best Choice
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Engine
26 HP (845 cc)
Max speed
6.5 MPH
Cutting deck
54-inch
Item weight
678 pounds
Reviews
13 Reviews
Rating
Prime
-
Price
$2,899.95
Best Price
Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower
Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower
Engine
12 HP (~382 cc)
Max speed
4.25 MPH
Cutting deck
30-Inch
Item weight
336 pounds
Reviews
251 Reviews
Rating
Prime
-
Price
$1,270.99
Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34" Zero Turn Lawn Mower
Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34" Zero Turn Lawn Mower
Engine
19 HP (~618 cc)
Max speed
6 MPH
Cutting deck
34-inch
Item weight
425 pounds
Reviews
5 Reviews
Rating
Prime
-
Price
$2,799.00
Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52" Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52" Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
Engine
23 HP (~ 725 cc)
Max speed
7 MPH
Cutting deck
52-inch
Item weight
871 pounds
Reviews
21 Reviews
Rating
Prime
-
Price
$3,099.00
Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
Engine
24 HP (780 cc)
Max speed
N/A
Cutting deck
61-inch
Item weight
770 pounds
Reviews
4 Reviews
Rating
Prime
-
Price
$5,299.00

Thankfully, you’ve come to the right place. Within this in-depth guide, you’re going to learn more about riding mowers that work exceptionally well for hills. Be sure to read the guide thoroughly to ensure that you’re able to get the most for your money.

1. Husqvarna Z254 54 Inch Riding Mower Review

If you’re looking for a great riding mower that will perform great on hills, you’ll want to check out the Husqvarna Z254 Riding Mower. This is one of the best mowers in this specific category. It will provide you with a great performance on all terrains. And, you can guarantee that this mower is going to get the job done much quicker. After all, it operates at maximum speeds above 6 miles an hour. This is a good mower for people who have hills and lots of grass to cut. Additional details about this lawn mower will be provided below for your consideration.

Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
13 Reviews
Husqvarna Z254 54 in. 26 HP Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
  • 26 HP Kohler engine provides reliable startups and a max speed of 6.5 MPH
  • A patent-pending park brake system automatically activates or deactivates as the steering levers are moved outward or inward

Speeds

First and foremost, you should know that you’ll be able to adjust the speed of this riding mower very easily. When you’re trying to move around objects, you’ll want to switch to a slower speed. When you’re in a hurry, you’ll be able to speed it up a lot. At the maximum, you can reach speeds of 6.5 miles per hour. This is very good and it helps ensure that the grass cutting is going to get done much easier. On top of that, the mower is very responsive. You can guarantee that it is going to adjust to the changes that you make instantly.

Park Brake

You’ll love the patent-pending park brake system. This is going to make a big difference and it’ll make the mower much safer. The good thing is that the brake will automatically activate and deactivate. It’ll do so when you move the levers outwards or inward. This takes the stress off of you. When you’re ready to stop, the mower will know it and it’ll engage the brake. When you’re ready to go again, the mower will unlock the brake and you’ll be able to start immediately.

Zero Turn

You should know that this is a zero turn mower. This is going to make your job much easier. With conventional riding mowers, it can be very tough to turn areas around objects. This zero turn mower will make things much easier. You can guarantee that you’ll be able to cut most of the grass and you won’t need to use the weed eater too much. Again, this is a good mower for people who have large yards with lots of grass to mow.

Clippings

Now, you should realize that this mower is going to help you deal with the clippings. You have many options to play around with. If you’re in a hurry, you can discharge the clippings onto the ground. Or, you can bag or mulch the clippings. This means that you’ll be able to kill two birds with one stone. Just remember that you’ll need to buy attachments separately to solve this problem. Either way, this makes the mower much more versatile and ensures you’re able to get more done in a shorter period of time.

26 HP

At the end of the day, you need to make sure that you choose a mower that is power. Otherwise, you might have trouble cutting through thick and tall grass. This is why you’ll want to consider buying the Husqvarna Z254 Mower. This is a good one for many reasons. It is going to provide you with a maximum of 26 HP. This ensures that the mower will be able to cut through anything and everything. You can guarantee that it’ll slice through that thick brush without any difficulty whatsoever.

Warranty

Another thing to note is that this mower comes with a great warranty. You can guarantee that Husqvarna is going to do everything they can to keep you satisfied. At the same time, they’re going to provide you with a 3-year warranty. This is great since you can count on the company to solve any problems that arise. If you want to make sure that your investment is protected, this is the riding mower for you. It works great on hills and it comes with a 3-year warranty!

  • 61-Inch cutting deck
  • Powerful engine (24HP)
  • Padded high-back seat and armrests
  • Grip handles are padded to ensure easy handling
  • More expensive than most competitor brands
  • No suitable for lawns smaller than ½ acre
Check latest price

2. Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Riding Lawn Mower Review

Are you looking for a great mower that will keep you comfortable from start to finish? If so, you’ll want to consider investing in the Troy-Bilt 382cc Riding Lawn Mower. This is a good choice for many people. It is slightly less expensive than many of the alternatives yet it is still going to make cutting your grass much easier. It offers numerous benefits and will definitely make your life less stressful. This mower works pretty well on hills. It has a lot of power so it can pull itself up those hills without any trouble.

Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower
251 Reviews
Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn Mower
  • Powered by a 382cc Auto Choke OHV engine with top forward speeds of 4.25 MPH and a 6-speed transmission
  • The 30-Inch cutting deck featuring 5 adjustable settings couples the benefits of a standard riding mower with the size of a wide cut walk behind mower

Speeds

First and foremost, you should know that this mower features a 6-speed transmission. It isn’t the fastest mower on the list but it is still good in this category. At the maximum, the Troy-Bilt is going to provide you with speeds of 4.25 MPH. That is pretty good and you can guarantee that you’ll be able to get the grass mower quickly. You won’t have to sit on the mower for too long.

Turning Radius

You need to understand that this is not a zero turn mower. This will turn off some consumers but it won’t be a problem for others. This unit offers a turning radius of 18-inches. That is pretty good. You should be able to get around those objects without too much trouble. Many will prefer a zero turn mower but those tend to be much more expensive. You can save yourself some money by investing in the Troy-Built Premium Neighborhood Riding Mower.

Great Wheels

When you ride over rough terrain, there is always a risk that something is going to go wrong with the wheels. If that happens, you’ll need to replace them as quickly as possible. Well, this shouldn’t be a problem with the Troy-Bilt mower. This one features very durable wheels. You can guarantee that they’re going to last for many years to come.

Warranty

Before going any further, you should know that this lawn mower is protected by a 2-year limited warranty. Plus, you should know that Troy-Bilt is very reliable. The company is going to do everything possible to protect the consumer. If you run into issues with this mower, you can guarantee that the company will solve the issue. It is protected for a period of 2 years.

  • Zero turn
  • Works great on hills
  • Excellent 3-year warranty
  • Automatic brake system
  • Doesn’t come with a headlight
  • Bag and mulch attachment need to be bought separately
Check latest price

3. Ariens Zoom 19HP Kohler Zero Turn Lawn Mower Review

There are many excellent mowers out there. Most of them will perform well on hills. However, you should know that the Ariens Zoom is great in this specific category. It is slightly expensive but it is a zero turn mower and that will make it worth the investment. Plus, you can guarantee that this one is built to last. You’ll be able to use it for many years without any issues whatsoever. This compact mower is designed for small to medium lawns. Therefore, it might not be a good choice for people with large yards. Either way, it is going to make the chore of cutting your grass much easier.

Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34' Zero Turn Lawn Mower
5 Reviews
Ariens Zoom 34 - 19hp Kohler 6000 Series V-Twin 34" Zero Turn Lawn Mower
  • Ariens Zoom compact mower is designed for small- to medium-sized lawns

Zero Turn

One of the biggest benefits associated with this mower is the zero turn design. This is going to make a big difference in the long run. You can guarantee that you’ll be able to use this mower without any difficulty. You’ll be able to cruise around obstacles without any trouble. This will make things a lot easier on your end. You won’t have to worry about using the weed eater too much or circling back around to get what you’ve missed.

Fuel Capacity

You do not want to be required to stop and refill the tank. If you have to do that, it is going to be very annoying and it is going to prolong the process. The good news is that you won’t have to fool with it with this mower. This mower is capable of holding 2 gallons of gasoline. This will make a major difference. You’ll be able to cut your entire lawn without having to stop. This guarantees that you’ll be back inside before you know it.

Excellent Longevity

Ultimately, this is one of the most durable lawn mowers on the planet. You can guarantee that this one is going to last many years. The company has gone to great lengths to ensure that this mower is going to provide you with many years of use. Some previous users have used it for more than 10 years! You can say that they’ve got their money’s worth and you’ll be able to do the same. It is true that many people haven’t heard of the company. Still, it is reputable and worth a closer look.

Comfortable Seat

You should know that the Zoom is going to keep you comfortable from start to finish. The seat is very comfy. And, the handles feature soft grips. When you sit down and begin using this mower, you can guarantee that you’re not going to feel any pain or discomfort. You’ll be comfortable from start to finish.

  • Great warranty
  • Reliable company
  • Doesn’t consume a lot of space
  • Easy to use and steer
  • Small size means you’ll be cutting longer
  • Ethanol might damage the engine
Check latest price

4. Ariens 915223 IKON-X Mower Review

The Ariens 915223 is a great mower for those who want a zero-turn mower. You’re going to get what you pay for here. This mower is very expensive but it’ll prove to be worth it in the long run. This is a gasoline-powered mower. Therefore, it might not be suitable for everyone. Nevertheless, it is going to be a good option for most. With that being said, you should know that this mower is very reliable and it is easy to use. You’ll learn more about the Ariens IKON-X below.

Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52' Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
21 Reviews
Ariens 915223 IKON-X 52" Zero Turn Mower 23hp Kawasaki FR691 Series
  • This refurbished product is tested and certified to look and work like new. The refurbishing process includes functionality testing, basic cleaning, inspection, and repackaging. The product ships with all relevant accessories, and may arrive in a generic box

Size

Now, you should delve deeper into the size of this mower. After all, you’ll need to make sure that it is going to fit into your garage. It measures in at 78 by 41 by 64 inches. This is a bigger mower so you’ll need to make sure you have space for it. It weighs more than 870 pounds. Therefore, you’re not going to be able to lift it up on your own.

Comfy

This mower is designed to keep you comfortable from start to finish. It featured a high-backed seat with plenty of padding. Plus, there are armrests. If you want to mow your grass and remain comfortable the entire time, this is the mower for you. You can guarantee that your entire body will remain relaxed from start to finish.

  • Very durable
  • Seat is comfortable
  • Zero turn
  • Powerful and quick
  • Very expensive
  • Not available in California
Check latest price

5. Husqvarna MZ61 61-Inch 24 HP Riding Lawnmower Review

Husqvarna is a brand that is highly known for producing high-quality lawn equipment. And, its MZ61 Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero-Turn Riding Lawnmower is no different. The lawnmower is integrated with state-of-the-art technologies and premium-grade components to ensure fuel efficiency, roll-over protection, easy deck lifting adjustments, a decent cut, and quick startups.

Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
4 Reviews
Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 24 HP Kawasaki Hydrostatic Zero Turn Riding Mower
  • 24 HP Kawasaki engine provides reliable startups and high ground speeds
  • Roll-over protection system (ROPS) ensures safer operation in all conditions

Power Engine

The Husqvarna MZ61 is embedded with a powerful engine. The engine can generate up to 24 horsepower. So, you will never need to worry about having enough power to climb hills and cut through thick brushes of grass.

Durable Cutting Deck

The cutting deck is constructed of 11-gauge steel. This material is known for its high-level of durability, stability, and longevity. The deck is coated with a powder coating to give the machine eye appeal. Steel is capable of resisting corrosion and rust even when exposed to the harshest elements. The cutting deck provides a 61-inch cut, which is ideal for large lawns.

Comfortable Seating

Whether your lawn is small or large, you should demand comfort from your riding lawnmower. Well, that is exactly what the Husqvarna MZ61 Riding Lawnmower can provide and much more. The lawnmower is designed with a high-back seat that is padded with thick foam. In addition to this, the mower is equipped with armrests that are also filled with thick padding. The padding will reduce the shock impact of bumps and the vibration of normal operation. The seat is adjustable, so it will comfortably seat a rider of short and tall stature.

Heavy-Duty Steel Frame

The lawnmower frame sustains a lot of damage during normal operation. To ensure durability and longevity, Husqvarna chose to utilize steel in the construction of its MZ61 frame. This design will endure exposure to the elements and vibration impact.

  • Zero turn
  • Nice seat and armrests
  • Easy to user
  • Makes the job easier
  • Expensive
  • Might be too big for some people
Check latest price

Choosing The Best Riding Lawn Mowers for Hills: Buying Guide

Riding lawnmowers are high-ticket items. So, to ensure your investment, you must consider several factors before making a purchase. These factors include horsepower, safety features, speed, collection system, warranty, seat design, cutting deck construction, and deck lifting system. A buying guide for riding lawnmowers is provided in the article below.

Electric Start

Most modern riding lawnmowers utilize an electric start. This starting system works by manually turning the engine. The rider must put the key in the ignition and turn to start the engine. This is a quick and easy process that should produce results in less than 30 seconds.

Riding lawnmower manufacturers have turned away from the manual crank cord starting system because it is so inconvenient. And, to stay competitive in such a competitive industry, the electric start is a necessity.

Safety Features

Mowing on hills is extremely dangerous for the rider and riding lawnmower. To minimize the risks, manufacturers are integrating Roll-Over Protection Systems (ROPS) into their riding lawnmowers. This system helps to decrease the risks of rolling the machine over when mowing on steep hills. The ROPS ensures safer operation even in the harshest conditions.

Cutting Deck

The cutting deck can be described as a safety feature of riding lawnmowers. The component protects the rider and blades from coming into contact with flying debris. Since the cutting deck is exposed to all kinds of elements, it must have a durable construction. Most manufacturers utilize heavy-gauge steel for the construction of their cutting decks. In most cases, 11-gauge steel is utilized for this purpose.

The size of the cutting deck is also extremely important. The riding deck size will vary from one brand to another. The diameter of the riding deck will vary between 42 and 48 inches. Depending on the size of your property, the 42-inch cutting deck may suffice. Properties over two acres may require a cutting deck with a diameter of 48 inches. The smaller the cutting deck, the smaller the size of the cut and vice versa for large cutting decks.

Deck Lifting System

The rider must frequently adjust the deck lifting system. The system is lifted when the lawnmower is not in use and lowered when cutting grass. The design of the deck lifting system is very important because it can determine the difficulty level of the adjustments. An ergonomic design will be your best bet because it will ensure quick and easy adjustments.

Seat Design

If your lawn is larger than two acres, it may take you an hour or more to cut it, even on a riding lawnmower. Spending a lot of time on a riding lawnmower can take its toll over time. This is especially true for people who provide residential and commercial grass-cutting services. To ensure the highest level of comfort, the seat must have an ergonomic design. A seat with a high back, high adjustment capabilities, and padded armrests will ensure the highest level of comfort. The seat and armrests should be padded with thick foam to absorb the impact of the vibration caused by bumps and normal operation.

Summary

Buying a riding lawnmower can be a difficult process. You need to make sure that you’re going to get your money’s worth. Therefore, you should take your time and research your options carefully. If you choose one of the models mentioned above, there is a good chance that you’re going to be satisfied with your investment.

FAQs

Why is the size of the cutting deck important?

The size of the cutting deck will determine the size of the cut. A larger cutting deck will cover a larger area of grass, which will reduce the time it normally takes to mow.

What type of material is utilized to build the cutting deck?

Manufacturers generally utilize steel to make their cutting decks. The gauge of the steel will vary from one brand to another. But, consumers should be aware of the importance of this component. The cutting deck plays a major role in protecting the blades and rider from flying debris. The unit sits very close to the ground, so it must be durable enough to endure exposure to the elements and the impact of flying debris. A cutting deck constructed of 11-gauge steel will be your best bet.

Do most riding lawnmowers come with a collection bag?

Most of the name brand riding lawnmowers do include a collection bag for grass clippings. The size of the bag will depend on the size of the lawnmower. If you have a large lawn, you will need to empty the bag at least once with each mowing

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