Rated 4.4 out of 5 by 19
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by DIYQueenSWFL Easy to start, easy to turn
This is the easiest starting mower I ever used. Just one pull out of the box got it started. Pulls so easy, your wife (I'm a female) or even older adults could start it each and every time. The mower makes turns super easy, and it's so lightweight when in motion that it felt like I was pushing a shopping cart. The mower came with everything necessary to start mowing. It also had the exact amount of oil in it needed to get started fresh out of the box. It has an easy lightweight snap on leaf/mulch bag. Front and rear wheels height adjust quickly and easily. Can cut high and really low.
The instructions were great. The mower took very little time to assemble. The entire mower came in one neat box. This is the best mower I ever had, and it's the top of the line. This mover should last a very long-time.
April 20, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Tom3 Made mowing significantly Faster and Easier!
Very excited about this mower. It's been killing me that it took so long for the weather to warm enough that I could use it a few times before writing a review.
I live in an area where properties and lawns aren't that big. My lawn isn't a giant rectangle where mowing means walking straight 200', turning around and repeating that over and over. I have tight spots, curves and some odd angles. With my old mower it felt like I was pulling it backwards almost as much as I was pushing it forwards. The caster wheels on the Cub Cadet SC 500 Z changed all that. I'm now able to turn the mower in tight spaces without having to make 3 point turns every minute or worry about tripping while walking backwards. When I finished mowing I was a bit disappointed at how fast everything went and how little I got to play with my new mower but when it gets hot out I'll be happy to get back in the air conditioning sooner.
The front wheels weren't the only benefit. I always thought a self-propelled mower, like this SC 500 Z, wouldn't really be a big deal for smaller lawns and might even be more trouble than they're worth. The MySpeed Premium Drive Control System made mowing easier and is very intuitive. The mechanical operation of the speed control is easy to explain. The more you push the lever forward the faster the machine goes. When you're actually mowing though the only way I can think to explain it is you walk faster the mower moves faster, you walk slower the mower moves slower. I never had to think "Oh I better slow down/speed up". The mower just moves with me naturally without having to think what speed I'm in or having to reach down to shift a lever. The best part is it didn't take me any time at all to get used to the drive system. It's easy to forget the mower is even self-propelled except that when I'm done mowing I'm not sweating.
I still have a couple of spots where I need to back up and before actually using the mower I worried that it might be difficult based on some things I read. According to the manual you're supposed to let back on the drive handle and push the mower forward a little to make sure the drive is disengaged. Otherwise there would be more resistance when going backwards. It sounds complicated but when I was actually mowing that also came naturally to me. The only issue I had with backing up was that the rear skirt (the black plastic flap under where the bag attaches that prevents rocks and stuff from shooting back at your feet) can sometimes bind a bit. The skirt also gets a little hung up when I'm backing it out of the garage but so far hasn't been a major issue.
The caster wheels and the MySpeed Drive Control are really what set this mower apart in my view and they worked out better than I expected they would.
There's one minor drawback with having caster wheels. Let's say you're mowing in a straight line and right in front of you the lawn ends at a brick wall, or even some stone edging that's installed higher than the grass, you won't get as close to the obstruction as you would with regular wheels. It's really not a big deal because even with regular wheels you wouldn't be able to get close enough to avoid using a string trimmer so no time lost.
Every time I've used it the engine started on the first pull. No bending over to prime or adjust the choke. Just pull and the engine starts. The first time I ran it the engine was very loud but it settled down after it warmed up and the Autochoke adjusted.
The specs on the mower say it can cut between 1-1/4" to 3-3/4" (in 1/2" increments) but after I cut my lawn on the highest setting it was closer to 3-1/4". Probably because the blade lifts the grass up when it cuts and then it slumps back down a little? Cut quality was very good with consistent heights throughout the lawn.
Changing the height of the rear wheels is very easy. The handle takes very little effort to move. When you change the height of the rear wheels you're also supposed to change the height of the front wheels to. Otherwise you can get an uneven cut, especially around curves or if you the soil under the lawn is a little bumpy. Changing the height of the front wheels isn't as easy. You need to remove a plastic wing nut (wish it were stainless steel) to remove a bolt and then pass it through a different hole and reassemble the wheel. It's not very difficult but it does take a few minutes to do. Most of the time I keep the mower deck as high as possible, especially in the summer, and might lower it in the spring or fall. It's not like I'm changing the height every week so I can deal with it.
The mower can quickly be changed from a bagger to a mulcher by just removing the bag. If you want to change to a side discharge mower you just remove the bag and add the included side discharge chute. I honestly have no idea why people would want to use the side discharge.
95% of the time I mulch mow because it's good for the lawn. Mulch mowing returns moisture, adds organic matter, feeds the worms and provides up to 1/4 of the nitrogen the lawn needs so you can fertilize less. More importantly, I hate emptying the grass catcher. The mulching action of the mower works well. The deep deck design keeps the clippings in the deck flying around so they get cut multiple times. The lift of the stock blade is pretty good but Cub Cadet also makes a high lift mulching blade (model 942-0741x) sold separately. I've used similar designs in the past and in my opinion they are worth getting if you mainly mulch mow.
The other 5% of the time I bag if I let the grass get too long between mowings or if I have an area with some weeds that have gone to seed that I want to gather up. I avoid weed killers but have some pop up here and there. If I ever feel like cutting the clippings larger and having them shoot out the side of the mower, along with any twigs and pebbles that might be in the lawn, I guess it's nice to have that option? The bag goes on and off easy and empties as well as any other I've used.
That plastic trim piece on the top of the handles doesn't really serve any purpose other than to cover up a small area where the drive cables pass through. It kept getting in my way when I went to grab the stationary handle. Whenever I'm moving the mower when the engine's not running, like to and from storage, I feel more comfortable using the stationary handle instead of the tilting drive handle but that trim piece kept getting in my way so I removed it using a Torx screwdriver. The mower doesn't have that same sleek look without the trim piece (or the bag) but that's what works best for me. If the trim piece allowed you to grab the handle easier and maybe served some other useful purpose to justify its size, like a slot to store safety glasses or even a cup holder I'd get it. The way it is just useless to me.
There's a hose quick connect fitting on the mower deck so you can connect your garden hose and use it to pressure wash the grass from under the deck. The mower even comes with the quick connect fitting that attaches to your hose. Manual says run 2 minutes with the water on, then run another 2 minutes to help it dry. I only used it once and it got a lot of the big clumps off, but not all. It even cleaned the shoot where the grass catcher goes. Not sure if I'm going to use this often but it's a nice feature. I just wish there was a replacement part that had a metal quick connect fitting instead of the plastic one because all my other watering equipment has either aluminum or brass quick connect fittings which aren't compatible. I had to attach one of my quick connect fittings to the plastic hose quick connect fitting to use my hose.
Regular maintenance seems like the standard sharpen blade, change oil, spark plug, air filter, fuel filter every season (cost is reasonable) but there's also a carbon canister filter that needs cleaning every season too. Getting to the carbon canister involves removing the outer engine shroud, recoil starter housing and inner engine shroud before you get to the canister. Then you pop off the cap and remove the foam filter to wash or replace. Doesn't look hard to do and anything that keeps the air you breath clean while you mow is a good thing. Manual doesn't show the part number. It's 951-14400 if you need to replace it.
Box arrived via UPS a little damaged but everything was fine inside. Well packed. Easy to assemble.
I think this is an awesome mower that saves me a lot of time and effort when mowing the lawn. The annoyances were easy to resolve and minor.
May 11, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by dugntex This lawn mower is almost perfect.
I have used this mower for about a total time of 20 hours and am very pleased with it's performance so far. Although it arrived with the outer box looking very ragged out, there was no damage to any of the contents. One of the bolts for the handle had fallen out of the box, buy a quick trip to the hardware store fixed that. Very easy to "assemble", only took about 5 minutes. Added the oil and some gasoline and it started on the second pull. And it has been easy to start ever since, usually just one pull.
I am really impressed with the "zero turn" ability of this machine. It easily mows around obstacles in the yard. It's also quick and easy to lock the front wheels for long straight runs or if you just prefer that setup. Height adjustment is easy with the rear wheel, but the front wheels are adjusted using bolts. I takes a minute or two, but I don't see any reason I would ever need to change the height now that it is set. The rear wheel drive system has operated flawlessly, making this mower a true walk behind. There is absolutely no pushing required.
I only have one issue with this mower. The fuel tank is solid black and the only way to check the fuel level is to open the cap. A translucent white tank or some sort of sight "glass" would have made filling the fuel tank easier, and safer. I have overflowed it several times trying to "guess" when it was nearing full.
Fuel tank aside, I would highly recommend this mower to those with 1/4 to 1/3 acre yards.
Final note: Whoever was in charge of placing the model sticker on the engine was having a bad day as this one received the incorrect sticker. I ordered, and received, the pull start - but got one stickered for the electric start.
March 21, 2015
Rated 3.0 out of 5.0 by DIYinUT Great at Mowing, Not so Great at Bagging
I had an old Craftsman that was needing to be replaced so this mower looked nice and decided to try it.
This shipped to my house and the box was pretty beat up, but the mower itself was in excellent condition. and this shipped from across the US.
Out of box assembly was pretty easy and straight forward. you have to unfold the handle bar with some carriage bolts and nuts. assemble the bag to the bag frame and add oil and gas and you're ready to mow. All in all it took me about 10 minutes to un-box, assemble and start.
I have used this mower several times now and this mower will start on the first pull each time, and it doesn't take a great deal of force to pull start the mower, which is very nice. The walk behind drive system is nice and easy to use. you just have to push the throttle bar forward to engage the drive system and just walk behind the mower. the castors are nice and make turning the mower easy enough. my only complaint is how far forward the castors are to the front of the mowing deck. it makes it a little harder than normal to get into tight corners in the yard as I now have to use a string trimmer more often as a result.
My biggest complaint is with the bagging function of the mower. the drive system in the rear seems to impede the flow of the grass out of the back of the mower as a result, emptying the bag is far more messy than it should be, and I'm only able to fill the bag 1/2 to 2/3rds capacity because the outlet gets clogged easily. I now have to empty the bag almost twice as much when I mow. This is why I gave the product only 3 stars.
May 6, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Jason31 Easiest mower I've ever used
This is a great lawn mower.
The engine starts on the first pull and there are no other engine controls to deal with, it just starts. The noise level is low enough to hearing protection is not required.
The caster design, makes turning very, very easy and you don't need to lift the front of the mower off the ground. This is much safer since the blade is never exposed. It takes a little practice to mow a straight line, but easy once you get the hang of it. The casters can lock, but I would never do that since the swivel wheels is such a great feature.
The mower rolls very smoothly already, but the self propelled feature makes mowing the lawn like taking a walk. As you hold the bar and walk, the bar moves forward to control the speed. Full speed is a good fast walk, and the slow speed is just right to start making a turn.
The bag design makes a tight seal and keeps dust from blowing out. The height adjustment is simple on the back wheels, but takes some time on the front. For you front you must unscrew a wing nut, move the wheel and insert the bolt in the new hole. It would be nice to have a simple adjustment on the front, but fine if you only need to change it once.
This is a great lawnmower that will make mowing much easier and safer.
April 24, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Kellen Big upgrade
I love this mower, it looks great, maneuvers easily (the swiveling front tires makes a big difference), has a hose attachment to help me keep it clean, and obviously best of all it cuts fast and even.
I've only operated it in bag mode but switching from bag to mulch to side-ejecting is just a quick toolless adjustment.
September 10, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by MegP Great mower!
I have a large yard that I usually mow with a ride on mower, however there are occasions where I either want exercise (hah! not too often...) or the ride on mower is being serviced so I default to the push mower. This mower has been great for that purpose. A couple of thoughts:
-Assembly was quick and simple
-Bagger is nice to have, but fills quickly - I tend to go without it
-Self propelled is nice, makes the effort of push mowing easier
-The handle feels low to me, and the mechanism to engage the propulsion requires you to push down even further. There's probably a way to adjust the handle, I just haven't bothered trying yet.
I would order again.
January 14, 2015
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by stevie72 flawless so far
i have use it twice so far and it has cut down my mowing time. the caster wheels and my pace feature is amazing the just go and u guide it where you need it to. the wheels makes it simple to turn i will update this if anything happens and when the mowing season is over
April 6, 2014