How to Buy a Used Push Mower

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How to Buy a Used Push Mower

There are two types of push motors to consider when buying a used push mower. There are manual or reel push mowers and then there are rotary mowers. Rotary push mowers utilise a small engine to propel the motor, while reel motors are man-powered, and use the act of pushing the mower forward to propel the blades.

Other than the major engine difference between rotary mowers and manual mowers, there are a few other differences to consider, but not that many. Push mowers are similar across the different brands, but have some different options to learn about when purchasing them, especially when purchasing a used push mower. Things that vary with push mowers are the cutting height, weight, directions of the cutting spray, and the cutting width, and various features including self-propelling motors, clipping bags, and mulching options. It is important to have background knowledge on the type of grass being cut as well. eBay has a wide selection of both manual push mowers and rotary push mowers to choose from.

Two Types of Push Mowers

Both the rotary powered lawn mowers and the manual push mowers have pros and cons. The manual push mower is more suitable for smaller, less dense lawns, while the rotary push mower is high powered enough to cut through weeds and grasses. Rotary push mowers are more suitable for larger, denser lawns.

Manual or Reel Push Mowers

Push mowers typically use a scissor style of cutting grass. This leaves each grass piece more flush with the rest of the lawn than the cut of a rotary mower. Rotary mowers use more of a tear and chop system, leaving the lawn not quite as even as a manual push mower. Manual push mowers cut grass by snipping the grass cleanly across the top. Another advantage is that it leaves the grass with less tears and makes the lawn less susceptible to insects and grass diseases.

Because the manual push mower is powered completely manually, it does not pollute air the way that other lawn mowers do. They also do not have loud revving engine and are much quieter than rotary mowers. One of the downsides of not having an engine is that manual push mowers are not recommended for large lawns, because of the effort it takes to propel them. They are much more suitable for smaller lawns. Another advantage of manual push mowers is that they require only a little maintenance because of their lack of an engine.

Rotary Push Mowers

Rotary mowers are more suitable for larger lawns, or for lawns with lots of dense, thick grasses or weeds. While manual push mowers ride right over thick weeds without cutting them, rotary engines have the power to cut larger, stronger weeds and grass. Manual push mowers also do not have a bag to collect leaves, twigs, grass and other items that are picked up in a lawn mower, while rotary lawn mowers often have a bag to collect the clipped items.

Rotary lawn mowers can be front-wheel or rear-wheel drive, meaning that the engine power is in either the front or the back wheels and the other wheels just roll along with the mower. Rear-wheel drive is better for larger, hillier lawns, while front-wheel drive is better for flatter, medium sized lawns.

Some rotary lawn mowers also come with a self-propelling feature, which pushes the engine forward rather than just rotating the mower’s blades. This is a potential feature to look for when shopping for a used rotary push mower. Other rotary push mowers also come with a mulching option. The mulching option chops the grass into finer pieces and sprays them back onto the lawn to provide the lawn with vital nutrients. This is usually accomplished with a double blade.

Overview of Push Mower Cutting

Push mowers typically have an adjusting blade that raises up higher from the grass or lowers to cut the grass shorter. The blade adjustment feature is found on most manual and rotary lawn mowers. It is best to experiment with different grass length sizes to determine the best suitable size for that lawn. It is generally recommended that at least two-thirds of the grass blade length remain intact to preserve grass health.


When considering mower width, it is important to consider the weight of the push mower. The larger the width of the push mower, the less passes it takes to cut the grass. This, in theory makes less effort, but because of the added width, the weight of the push mower is also increased. This is true for both rotary and manual push mowers. Rotary push mowers with the self-propel feature make the weight of the mower less important because the engine will assist in propelling the mower forward. Rotary push mowers also propel their own blades automatically, decreasing the effort is takes to push the mower, even without the self-propel feature.


As introduced above, the weight of the manual push mower will impact how much strength is needed when it is pushed. The heavier the push mower, the more strength is going to be needed to push it. This is not an important factor when purchasing a rotary push mower, because the engine keeps the blades moving. The self-propelling feature, which pushes the mower forward, allows the user to expend less energy than with a manual push mower, making the rotary push mower suitable for larger lawns.


Push mowers typically come with five to seven blades. The blades are designed for different grass types. Grass that grows straight upward is best for a five blade mower. The more bent the grass, the more blades necessary to cut it. Really bent grass needs a seven blade mower.

Cutting Spray of Push Mowers

The cutting spray of manual push mowers will either shoot out behind the mower, or will be pushed out in front of the mower. Manual push mowers do not include a bag to collect the clippings, so they are dispersed onto the lawn, which mulches the lawn somewhat. However, it does not mulch as well as the rotary push mower when the mulching feature is utilised. Rotary motors do have the option of having a bag to hold the clippings, allowing the user to determine what to do with the clippers after the lawn is mowed. A bag is sometimes not utilised when the mulching feature is used to restore nutrients to the lawn. Rotary motors often typically spray the clippings out to the side of the mower.

Tips for Buying Used Push Mowers on eBay

There are some general things that should be looked at when looking specifically at used push mowers. Make sure to ask the seller about the age of the lawn mower, why they are selling it, and any damage or rust that may be present in the mower. Also, find out if the push mower still has the manual that came with it, or check to see if the brand’s manual and information can be found online. A manual or information about the push mower is more important when buying a used rotary push mower, because it is more complicated of a machine than the manual push mower. Begin your search on the eBay home page by typing in which type of push mower you would like. Once you have your search results, you can narrow down the results by selecting certain specifications that you are looking for in your mower. Browse the power tools and equipment category on eBay to explore more lawn tools you may need.

If the seller is located near you and both the buyer and the seller are agreeable, you may arrange to test drive the mower. This is more important with a rotary push mower than a manual push mower. In order to find a seller in your area, start your search and click on the "Distance" tab. Enter your postcode to see sellers located near you.


A nicely cut lawn is a good way to keep yards manageable. A push mower is the ideal mower for most small to large sized lawns. There are two types of push mowers to decide upon. There is the manual push mower, which does not have an engine, so the blades are propelled simply by being pushed forward. There is also the rotary push mower, which utilises an engine to propel the blades. Manual push mowers are much quieter, and don’t pollute the air but are suitable only for certain types of grass and for smaller sized lawns. Rotary mowers shorten the process of mowing, are suitable for a variety of different grasses and larger lawns.

Both models have different numbers of blades. Less blades are used for thinner, less grass. More blade are utilised for taller, thicker grass. Both types of mowers cutting height is adjustable, but it is not recommended to cut more than one-third of the grass in order to preserve grass health. eBay has a wide selection of both types of mowers to choose from.

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