Maintaining 3 acres of grass can be a challenge.
Here is a mower comparison chart to help you determine what is best for you
Push mowers may be great for small lawns and provide excellent results but for lawns larger than 2 or 3 acres they are impractical due to the time they would take to complete the task. You may initially think that self-propelled mowers, often referred to as walk behind mowers, may be more suitable but when you consider their small fuel tanks will have to be replenished 2 or 3 times when used on these larger lawns, they take almost as long as the push mowers. This means that the only really viable option when cutting these larger lawns is a zero turn riding mower which can attain speeds of up to 8 miles per hour and still provide an excellent finished lawn.
As well as making the task quicker, most ride-on mowers can also navigate steep slopes without any difficulty or effort by their owners. Many also have the ability to tow a trailer with other equipment necessary, perhaps a trimmer for clearing up around obstacles.
Zero turn mowers will often make the task of mowing a large lawn so easy that many come with cup holder included and comfortable seats but they are machines similar to cars and so may need some experience to get used to driving them.
Here are 5 of which are considered to be among the best lawn mowers for 3 acres available today:
1. The comfortable Husqvarna MZ61
Vibration dampers, high back rest, padded grips and arm rests makes mowing the lawn with this mower a comfortable experience. The mower also has a 54” cut which is easy to adjust from the driver’s seat. An hour meter also makes life easier by reminding owners when servicing is due.
This mower offers zero turn ability for easy maneuverability and its powerful motor allows for easy cutting uphill however, due to the mower’s weight it can slide and become a little uncontrollable on steep downhill sections. Whilst the dampers do reduce a fairly even ride, the seat does not have suspension so the rider will still feel bumps on rough terrain.
A triple bagging system is provided, however, attachments for mulching and bagging are sold separately. Ergonomic and powerful this is a mower which can be used for long periods such as large grassed areas over 3 acres with ease and comfort, perhaps almost ideal for the larger mowing tasks.
- Engine: Briggs & Stratton,
- Cutting width: 61″
- Height of Cut: 1.5 – 4.5″
- Tank Capacity: 5 gallon
- Easy maneuverability
- Convenient controls
- Mulching and bagging attachments sold separately
- Lacks control on steep downhill sections
- No seat suspension
2. Maneuverable Poulan Pro P46ZX
The dual wheel hydro transmission system makes for better maneuverability, affording less hassle whilst mowing. To also make driving easier the transmission has an electric clutch for hassle free convenience.
With a 3.5 gallon fuel tank, this mower is suitable for those larger grassed areas and due to the maneuverability and convenience of driving, has the potential to be very durable and long lasting. The ease and efficiency of the maneuverability of this mower allow the driver to get closer to obstacles and edges, reducing the time to be taken with trimmers later.
This mower usually arrives fully assembled but does need to be checked for correct assembly before using. Poulan is a long-established maker of mechanical home and yard products and so provide a reasonable warranty however, that warranty may be needed as the drive belt is prone to giving problems.
The mower, affording it even more maneuverability has a zero turning capability so that even the most novice users can be proficient.
- Engine: Briggs & Stratton, 22 hp
- Cutting width: 46″
- Height of Cut: 1.5″ – 4″
- Tank Capacity: 3.5 gallon
- Reputable manufacturer
- Hydro transmission
- Electric clutch system
- Very maneuverable
- Can arrive assembled incorrectly so needs checking
- Troublesome drive belt
3. The Convenient Ariens IKON-X 52
With one side of this mower being conveniently off-set, it makes edging and getting closer to obstacles easier. This mower has a zero turn capability and padded seat for comfort. A 52” cutting swath makes it convenient for mowing larger grassed areas.
A 4 setting cutting height allows for grass to be cut to the users requirements. A rugged steel frame provides for durability. Although efficient, this is not the most eco-friendly mowers and so is not available in California but is well liked by owners elsewhere.
The powerful Kawasaki engine is easy to start and its internally vented carburetor affords better fuel management and its steering provides a zero turning circle. For user’s convenience a padded control arm limits unwanted vibrations for smoother control.
A convenient peddle allows the deck to be lifted when approaching obstacles avoiding needless damage or holdups. The small rear wheels make for easy maneuverability but can leave tracks in wetter conditions.
- Engine: Kawasaki FR V-Twin, 23 hp
- Cutting width: 52″
- Height of Cut: 1.5″ and 4.5″
- Tank Capacity : 2.8 gallon
- Zero turning circles
- Lifting deck
- Conveniently off-set deck
- Padded control arm
- Large cutting diameter
- Durable Frame
- Small rear wheels
- Not eco-friendly
4. Rapid Responding Swisher ZTR2454BS
Even though this mower has a zero turning circle, it also has a patented rapid response control system ensuring it is easy to maneuver.
With 54” cutting blades and an 8 gallon fuel capacity, this mower is capable of making the mowing of even large grassed areas faster and easier with no delays for refueling. The cutting deck has several cutting heights which can easily be adjusted by a foot lever.
Unlike many other similar mowers there are no additional purchases needed in order to mulch the cuttings allowing you to not just mow the grass but leave it as you like it to be. A front shield helps to circulate air making the mower efficient but it also stops brass cuttings getting on the operator, allowing them to look relaxed as well as feel it.
Enabling speeds of 8 mph in both front and reverse, considering its zero turn abilities, mowing large areas takes the same time as small areas with regular mowers. Most people are happy with this mower however those that have had problems find it difficult to get replacement parts.
- Engine: Briggs & Stratton,
- Cutting width: 54″
- Height of Cut: 1.5″ – 4.5″
- Tank Capacity : 8 gallon
- 2 x 4 gallon fuel tanks
- Zero turning circle
- Adjustable height cutting deck
- Rapid response control system
- Difficulty in finding replacement parts if needed
5. Ideal for Large Areas the Poulan Pro PPX46Z
This mower was designed for cutting lawns larger than 2 acres and so is ideal for using on any large grassed areas, and is equipped with 3 anti-scalp wheels to prevent damage to the lawn on uneven terrain.
18” rear wheels allow for easy driving even over rough ground and the padded, ergonomic controls and 15” mid-back seat keep the driver comfortable although lack of arm rests and leg room does provide some owners with problems. Although at 48” the blades are smaller than most similar mowers, its easy maneuverability and speeds of up to 6.5 mph ensure any task is carried out just as quickly.
Most owners with large lawns appreciate buying this mower when conditions are dry but some have experienced difficulties when conditions are wet. Although the mower seems to rarely give trouble when it has owners have been surprised at how easy it was to find replacement parts as that is often a problem with these types of mowers.
- Engine: Briggs & Stratton,
- Cutting width: 46″
- Height of Cut: 1.5″ – 4″
- Tank Capacity : 3.5 gallon
- Anti-scalp wheels fitted
- Ergonomic control
- Easy to get replacement parts
- No arm rests
- Problematic in wet conditions
Guide to Buying a Mower for Larger Lawns
For larger lawns most people will want to buy a ride-on mower but today there are just as many ride-on to choose from as there are other types of mowers so here is a guide that will hopefully help you decide which one would be the right one for you to buy, given your particular situation and the type of lawn you have. Large lawns are considered to be 2 to 3 acres or more but it is the type of terrain that your lawn is on which can be the biggest deciding factor.
What to consider:
The swath of a mower refers to the width of the blades which means the width of each cut and determines how many times a mower will have to go up and down a lawn in order to cut all of it, therefore determining the time it will take to complete the job.
Type of Terrain
If your lawn is flat and without obstacles then you will want a large mower that has a large cutting swathe as this will then get the job done easiest and quickest. If however your lawn is dotted with many obstacles, maneuvering a larger mower can prove difficult and so a smaller mower may make the task easier and quicker. If your lawn has multiple hills or grades the mower you want should have a low center of gravity and good traction. Often the nest mowers for these types of terrain are referred to as ‘yard tractor’ mowers.
Type of Transmission
Manual transmission mowers are usually the cheapest and can be just as effective as more expensive ones but they do require extra work. Like cars with stick shifts, manual transmissions require the drivers to shift gear whenever they want to adjust speed when they approach obstacles or meet different grades. If not already proficient with stick shifts these can take some getting used to however they are more reliable and relatively trouble free compared to their rivals.
These involve far less work but often more expensive than their manual equivalents. This type of mower will however make the task of mowing far easier.
These are considered the top of the line in mowers but unfortunately they have a price to match. Although these types of mower do make the task of mowing easier than either of the others, even if you can afford the higher initial price, you should remember that they also have higher running costs and need far more maintenance.
Body Configuration or Style
Engine at Rear
These are normally restricted to the smaller tractor mowers and as such cost less but whilst they are ideal in so far as they take up less storage and can maneuver through small areas, as a smaller mower they are limited in their abilities.
Lawn and Garden Tractors
These are designed for multiple tasks and conditions and as such have powerful engines and robust bodies. These usually provide a wide swath when cutting to allow for a faster finish but they are now as agile as the smaller mowers when it comes to navigating obstacles.
Zero Turn Mowers
Despite their higher price these types of mowers are becoming popular as they provide easy maneuvering through 360 degrees. These are usually high performance mowers capable of speeds up to 8 mph making any mowing task quick. They do however have a learning curve if they are to be used to their full potential and they are not suitable for towing purposes due to their delicate hydrostatic motors.
Even with a ride-on mower which makes the job easier, cutting 3 acres of lawn is always a chore and one that needs to be done regularly. Whilst before, ride-on mower owners may have been the envy of smaller mower owners that is not today necessarily the case as smaller lawns can now be cut with robotic lawn mowers, allowing their owners to just sit back on their porch and watch as their lawns get cut.
Times are again changing though and whilst there may not today be robotic mowers available to cut the larger lawns, it is thought that soon there may be. Not only will these larger robotic mowers afford the same ease as the smaller, current ones but they will probably not need fuel as they will be electric and powered by solar energy, not just making the task easier but also making it cheaper once the initial cost of the robotic mower has been paid.
Getting back to today though, ride–on mowers can make any large lawn relatively easy to mow providing the owner makes the right choice in which one to buy as that is the key to making the task as easy and quick as possible.