Stand-on vs ride-on mowers
As mowing contractors well know, mowers come in all shapes and sizes, with various bells, whistles, motors, catch bags and functions, so it can be hard knowing which will be the best for your specific needs, your business model, and your target market.
For lifestyle blocks and larger lawns, it often comes down to choosing between a sit-on and stand-on model, so it’s important to understand the pros and cons of each model.
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Sit-on mowers, also commonly called Zero Turn Radius mowers, or ZTRs, have been a crowd favourite for a while now, known for their speed, productivity and manoeuvrability, as well as their large selection of options for engines and decks, large fuel capacity and ability to bag, mulch or side discharge clippings.
In recent years, stand-on mowers are earning reputations as adding productivity, comfort, manoeuvrability and visibility, as well as greatly increased stability and performance on slopes. Because they are usually smaller, stand-ons are able to go more places than sit-ons, and increase the accuracy of trimming, too.
So which is best for you?
Stand-on mowers are ideal for more landscaped areas as they can manoeuvre into tighter spots, without the operator having to push the mower. Ideal for properties and locations that have narrow gates, lots of planter beds and trees.
Surprisingly, stand-ons are also great for hillside and sloped terrain. A much lower centre of gravity, more squat profile, and the ability to walk behind the mower make this ideal for slopes. Because the operator is higher than they would be sitting down, visibility is increased for both the landscaping required and obstacles.
It is also said stand-on mowers increase productivity, because the operator is more alert and concentrated than one who may get a bit *too* relaxed sitting in that comfy driver’s seat.
While the benefits of stand-on mowers are mostly lauded for the above, don’t be fooled: They, too have the power and ability to mow large, open spaces fast. Some mowers like our BOB-CAT QuickCat can drive at speeds up to 5km/h faster than their competitors – meaning less downtime!
However, if your property does not have hilly terrain or much landscaping, sit down mowers are recommended.
Sit-on mowers are also recognised as having more powerful engines - making them faster with larger fuel capacity.
Of course as their name suggests, the option of sitting is appealing to some users - and are regarded as easier to use. However, industry operators agree that stand-ons are more comfortable because your legs absorb the shock instead of your back. This is due to a much more natural rider position and significantly reduced fatigue.
Sit-on models are also favoured for their addition of mulch and clipping bags.
Sit-on mowers are also larger, meaning they can cover more ground more faster, but that also means they are harder to transport and store. You could get 4 into the space of two larger mowers on the back of a trailer.
Stand-on mowers are easier to get on and off quickly to remove any debris.
As you can see, finding the right mower really does depend on your individual needs. If you have a hilly or highly landscaped terrain, the stand-on mower would be a good option for you to consider.
If you have a wide open space, a sit-on ZTR could be more up your alley.
However, it is also important to consider the amount of time you will spend on either model, and if your physical conditioning is up to standing or sitting, taking into consideration receiving ground shock through your legs or back.
Not to mention the storage and transport of your mower, with sit-ons being larger, heavier and requiring a larger trailer and storage space.
We hope this guide acts as a starting point for your mower needs, but please please don't hesitate to get in touch with any further questions.