Buyers Guide

10 Best Commercial Zero Turn Mowers For Your Landscaping Business

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best commercial zero turn mowerCommercial zero turn mower is almost a requirement for any landscaping business, that takes itself seriously.

A robust commercial mower will help the landscaper securing better-paying jobs with larger properties.

The perfect zero turn mower will help you reduce labor cost and in turn increase profitability.

In this detailed guide, we are going to review the best commercial zero turn mower for your landscaping business.

The zero-turn mowers have been graded according to their best feature, mowing deck size, maximum speed (forward and reverse) and minimum and maximum grass cut height.

All candidates are powered by heavy-duty gasoline engines made by some of the leading manufacturers in the world. All engines are quite powerful, as you can see, with their output raging between 19 and 23 HP.

At the bottom of our table, there is one candidate equipped with a steering wheel, but our testers did not find it significantly better than other units they tried out.

No matter how reliable your zero-turn lawn mower is, you may still need to check on it or carry out some minor repairs.

Therefore, in a separate section of this article we are going to have a closer look at three of the most practical zero-turn mower lifts that are currently available online.

Product NameManufacturerDeck SizePower Max. Speed: Forward/ReverseMin./Max. Cut Height Price
360 ZSnapper
42 inches21.5 HP6 mph/3 mph1.5/4.5 inches
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Mustang 54Troy-Bilt54 inches25 HP7 mph/2.5 mph1.5/4.5 inches
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460ZSnapper48 inches25 HP8 mph/4mph1.5/4.5 inches
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MZ61Husqvarna61 inches27 HP8 mph/no reverse1.5/4.5 inches
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915223 IKON-XAriens52 inches23 HP7 mph/3 mph1.5/4.5 inches
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Z254FHusqvarna54 inches23 HP6.5 mph/no reverse1.5/4 inches
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IKON-X 915220Ariens42 inches22 HP7 mph/3 mph1.5/4.5 inches
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Model 915213Ariens42 inches19 HP 6 mph/3 mph1.5 inches/4.5 inches
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991151 ApexAriens60 inches24 HP8 mph/4 mph0.5 inches/5 inches
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RZT SX54Cub Cadet54 Inches21.5 HP7 mph/3 mph1.5 inches/4 inches

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1. Snapper 2691402 360zThe Best Zero Turn Mower for Back Yard Landscaping 

Best Zero Turn Mower for Back Yard Landscaping 

Snapper’s 360Z series includes several models with 2691402 being the smallest one.

Its foot-controlled mowing deck is 42 inches wide and its engine is a Briggs & Stratton Professional Series unit with a capacity of 21.5 HP.

These features make this candidate the perfect unit to carry out backyard landscaping tasks.

It’s got a fully-welded steel frame and a thick-walled front axle so that you should not worry about unpleasant technical flaws that may jeopardize your landscaping projects.

The durable mower deck and ball bearings in the caster spindles guarantee the unit’s great cutting capacity.

Depending on the terrain you are landscaping, you can tune this zero-turn mower’s engine into one of the several operation modes. You can also easily adjust the mower deck between 13 height-of-cut positions from 1. 5 to 4. 5 inches.

We were pleasantly surprised to find out that this model zero-turn mower comes with a cargo bed which, although not included in the start-up package, is very useful for hauling dirt, carrying your landscaping tools around the job site, or transporting precious flowers between job sites.

Pros

  • Heavy-duty 42-inch mowing deck
  • Functional cargo bed
  • Reliable 21.5 HP 3600 RPM engine

Cons

  • Minor issues with the carburetor have been reported

Best Selling Zero Turn Mowers 

2. Troy-Bilt Mustang 54 – The Best Zero Turn Mower for Your Money

Troy-Bilt Mustang 54 25HP 54-Inch Zero-Turn Mower

After some long and thorough research, our tireless testers have unanimously agreed that Troy-Bilt’s Mustang 54 is the best-value zero-turn mower that is currently available on the market.

But why have we chosen this precisely this model out of the other strong candidates?

Well, our choice is based on the unique combination of mowing deck size and engine horsepower that Mustang 54 provides.

The 54″ Deck With Triple Blade 

Triple Blade Zero Turn MowerThe 54-inch mowing deck is smaller than the 61-inch modification that you can see on some of the bigger mowers on our list.

This means that Mustang 54 has greater maneuverability and agility to perform some very complicated landscape designs.

Having a 54-inch triple-blade side discharge deck, this zero-turn mower can do all bigger jobs that are customary to the 60 and 61-inch mowers, only a bit more slowly. This is because the 25-HP Briggs & Stratton Intek Twin Cylinder delivers enough cutting power to the deck.

This model also features an integrated deck-wash system and Electric Power Take-Off (PTO) for quick and steady blade engagement. You can adjust the deck to 8 positions according to your choice of cutting height.

Mustang 54 mower runs at 7 MPH forward speed and 2.5 MPH reverse speed. We really enjoyed its comfortable high-back seat with dual suspension springs.

It guarantees a smooth ride. We also recommend that you grease the front caster wheels regularly to extend the bearings’ life. Last but not least, the manufacturer offers a 3-year limited residential warranty on this unit with a limited lifetime frame warranty.

Pros

  • Great side discharge capability
  • Heavy-duty engine
  • Comfortable seat

Cons

  • Issues with the electrical wiring have been reported

3. Snapper 460Z – The Most Turf Friendly Zero Turn Mower

Snapper 460Z 48-Inch 25HP

Snapper’s 460Z zero-turn mower is the right choice of unit for your big landscaping projects.

It features a heavy-duty, all-steel frame and contour-hugging front axle that guarantee an extended life-span.

Interestingly, the 460Z series has two modifications. The first is equipped with a hardworking Briggs & Stratton engine, and the second comes with a Kawasaki engine. 

Snapper’s 460Z model also features durable Hydro-Gear® ZT-3100® transaxles that require very little maintenance.

The 18” padded high-back seat provides maximum comfort for the operator. He can choose from 12 cutting height options from 1.5 to 4.5 inches. Mowing height options are selected by pressing down a pedal with your right foot.

The 460Z model has a large 5.5-gallon tank that holds more fuel so that you can be sure of completing your larger commercial landscaping projects on time.

Gas spills can be extremely dangerous, especially in summer, but this mower’s wide tank neck and easy-turn tank cap practically eliminate this risk.

We have tagged 460Z as the turf-friendliest zero-turn mower because of its wide, grass-friendly tires that leave grass just like you found it before you started working, only a bit shorter. With a forward speed of 8 miles per hour, this is also the fastest zero-turn mower on our list!

Pros

  • Large 5.5-gallon tank
  • Turf-friendly tires
  • Offered with two different engines

Cons

  • No roll-over protection

4.Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 27 HP – The Best Zero Turn Mower for 10 Acres

Husqvarna MZ61 61 in. 27 HP Briggs & Stratton

Huskvarna is one of the biggest names in the lawnmowing business.

Their MZ61 61-inch model is the zero-turn model you need to landscape sites that are over ten acres in size.

It features a massive 27 HP Briggs Endurance engine that will start up without any problems even in cold weather.

In this way, you will be able to use all late-autumn days before the first serious snowfall. This model features 6-inch wide caster wheels with pneumatic tires that are turf-friendly and reliable.

Adjustable Cutting Heights 

While mowing, you can adjust cutting heights with the push of a single pedal. MZ61’s ergonomically-designed deck-lifting system offers precise cutting height selection.

Our testers were quite impressed by this mower’s oversized 2” x 3” tube chassis that is a nice addition to its large rear and front tires.

The combination guarantees the unit’s superior strength and improved ride quality. The wide, 61-inch mowing deck is equipped with three relentless blades made of superior-quality steel. 

The Grass Clippings 

Grass clippings can be discharged, mulched or bagged with the 9-bushel triple bag collection system. It includes a mulching kit and bagger attachments. Unfortunately, these are sold separately. Another small shortcoming of this model that we noticed is that it comes without a cargo bed.

Yet, the operator’s comfort is guaranteed by this model’s high-back seat with armrests, foam-padded handgrips, and vibration dampeners.

At the same time, the individual, hydraulic wheel-drive allows for precise maneuvering. The mower can rotate around its own axis without any turning radius.

Pros

  • 9-bushel triple bag collection system
  • Oversized 2” x 3” tube chassis
  • Hydraulic wheel-drive for precise maneuvering

Cons

  • Suspension issues have been reported

Why Buy Zero Turn Lawn Mower

This is a great video on why you should get a commercial zero turn mower for your business instead of a residential zero-turn mower.

5.Ariens 915223 IKON-X – The Best Zero Turn Mower with Baggers 

Ariens 915223 IKON-X

The 915223 from the famous IKON-X series by Ariens features a potent 23 hp/726 cc Kawasaki FR V-Twin engine.

The 52-inch-wide mowing deck is 4.5 inches deep and it is made of 11-gauge high-quality steel. This model also features a tubular steel frame for maximum blade protection.

The high-back padded seat with armrests guarantees the operator’s comfort for hours on end.

On the models reviewed above, cutting height selection is pedal-controlled. On this model, however, it is dial-operated by the 4-point dual-arm deck hanging system.

The Hydro-Gear® EZT Transaxles drive system guarantees a smooth ride even on rugged terrain. Our testers concluded, however, that the 2.8-gallon fuel tank is a bit too small for the big 23-HP engine and the 52-inch mowing deck that this model features.

Ariens IKON-X powered bagger includes two mesh bags and has a 4.6 cubic feet capacity. It is again sold separately, but we’ve found it to be more affordable, and some dealers may even include it in your start-up package for free!

Pros

  • Hydro-Gear® EZT Transaxles drive system for a smooth ride
  • Ariens IKON-X powered bagger with two mesh bags
  • A tubular steel frame for maximum blade protection

Cons

  • The 2.8-gallon tank is a bit too small for the 23-hp engine

6.Husqvarna Z254F – The Best Zero Turn Mower for 5 Acres

Husqvarna Z254F 54 in. 23 HP Kawasaki

Huskvarna’s Z254F zero hydrostatic turn lawn mower is ideal for medium-sized commercial landscaping projects of up to five acres in size.

It may seem as if the 23-HP Kawasaki engine and the 54-inch mowing deck are up to some more serious business, but the unit’s maximum speed of just 6.5 mph forward explains why you just can’t extract more from this mower.

On the plus side, the hydrostatic transmission that this model is equipped with requires very little maintenance, even in cold and damp weather.

The 54-inch deck has got the revolutionary ClearCut Technology that provides more precise grass cutting and improved bagging options. As the case is with almost all other models, the bagging gear for this model is sold separately. 

The ergonomic control panel and anti-slip foot area make commercial landscaping safer and more efficient than ever before.

When you’re done for the day, do not forget to move the steering levers outward so as to park your mower. The deck can be adjusted even while mowing.

Pros

  • The ClearCut Technology provides optimal performance
  • An ergonomic control panel with an anti-slip foot area
  • Affordable price for its output

Cons

  • No info about fuel tank capacity


7.Ariens IKON-X 42" – The Best 42-inch Zero Turn Mower

Ariens IKON-X 42 Zero Turn Mower 22hp Kohler 7000 Series #915220

The IKON-X 42" model by Ariens is the perfect choice for small-to-medium-sized commercial landscaping projects.

Yet, we’ve distinguished this candidate as the best zero-turn mower in the 42-inch class because of its versatility, agility, and the low maintenance that it requires.

Its robust 22 hp/725 cc Kohler 7000 V-Twin engine will not let you down unless your expectations exceed its capacity. The mower’s muscle is fed from a 2.8-gallon gas tank, which means its output is suitable for projects between 2 and three acres in size.

IKON-X 42" is quite nimble with a forward ground speed of 7 mph and 3 mph reverse speed. At the same time, the Hydro-Gear® EZT Transaxles drive system guarantees smooth operation even on small hills and slopes.

For safe mowing at dusk or at night, upgrade your unit with the LED headlight kit for Ariens IKON and IKON XL zero-turn mowers.

Pros

  • A robust 22-hp engine 
  • A reliable Hydro-Gear® EZT Transaxles drive system
  • An optional LED headlight kit

Cons

  • The higher ground speed depletes the tank at a faster pace

8.Ariens 915213 – The Best Zero Turn Mower for 3 Acres

Ariens 915213 Zero Turn Mower, 19 HP, 42 in. Cutting W

The 915213 42-inch model by Ariens is a robust little fellow that our testers instantly fell in love with.

We’ve nominated it as the best model for 3-acre commercial landscaping tasks because it is economical, has got a sleek and sexy design, and it is very practical at the same time.

This zero-turn riding mower enables you to quickly manicure a yard while enjoying the comfort of its ergonomic seat. This agile mower features the best-in-class ground speed, well complemented with supreme accuracy and efficiency.

The 4-inch deep, one-piece stamped deck is made of 12-gauge steel. The intuitive foot-operated deck lift guarantees precise regulation of the cutting height. 

Just use the handy, seat-side lever to intuitively adjust the mowing deck’s height. This model has got a deck washout port.

It enables you to easily attach a garden hose to your 42-inch mower and thoroughly clean its blades and underside of its deck when you are done for the day.

Pros

  • Superb ground speed and unrivaled agility
  • The washout port provides easy cleaning
  • Solid one-piece mowing deck

Cons

  • Munching kit is sold separately and it is tricky to install

9.Ariens 991151 Apex – The Best 60-inch Zero Turn Mower

Ariens 991151 Apex 60

The APEX-60 model by Ariens is a rare bird in the field of commercial-grade zero-turn riding mowers.

While the 42, 48, 54, and the 61-inch classes are well-populated with models and sub-modifications for all testes, the sixty-inch class is much less populated.

The massive 60-inch mowing deck is supported by a powerful 24-HP Kawasaki engine. These characteristics make this model ideal for the implementation of large-scale commercial landscaping projects within tight deadlines. With a forward ground speed of 8 mph, this mower is also quite fast.

 In addition, the four-cycle engine of Apex 60 is fed from a five-gallon gasoline tank. We’ve found out that this is the perfect tank capacity for an engine of this size. The ten-gauge welded deck provides fifteen different mowing height positions. 

The cutting height ranges from 0.5 inches to 5 inches. Please note that on most other models the cutting height varies between 1.5 and 4.5 inches.

APEX-60 is also equipped with maintenance-free XL aluminum spindles with steel housing shafts and the blade tip speed reaches 18,000 feet per minute.

Pros

  • High blade tip speed
  • The widest grass-cutting range on our list
  • The 4-point deck-mount design guarantees the unit’s stability

Cons

  • Retail price is quite high

10.Cub Cadet RZT SX54 – The Best Zero Turn Lawn Mower with Steering Wheel

Cub Cadet’s RZT SX54

Cub Cadet’s RZT SX54 is the only commercial landscaping zero-turn lawn mower on our list that is equipped with a steering wheel.

Excites as our testers initially were about this fact, they were quick to find out that the mower still does not drive like a car.

The cutting deck is 54 inches wide and the mower’s heart is a 21.5-HP Kawasaki engine, which is fed from a 2.8-gallon tank. So, while this mower has got the power and the size to cope with big landscaping jobs, its small fuel tank means that the mower’s run time is quite short. 

The manufacturer vows that the engine’s overhead-valve design maximizes fuel efficiency and boosts the mower’s performance, extracting more power from every drop of gasoline.

This model is also unique with its SynchroSteer® technology that provides exceptional stability even on hilly job sites.

The list of extras on RZT SX54 continues with its SmartJet™ high-pressure deck washing system and the lever-operated 8-position, spring-assisted deck lift. At the same time, the 3 anti-scalp wheels prevent grounding out on uneven terrain.

Pros

  • The 3 anti-scalp wheels eliminate grounding out on uneven terrain
  • Easy deck washing
  • High fuel efficiency
  • Steering wheel for increased maneuverability

Cons

  • We still think that the fuel tank is a bit too small for an engine of this size  

 Zero Turn Lawn Mower Lifts

Whether you want to carry out a minor repair on your zero-turn lawn mower or perform a regular technical inspection, the first step to suspend the unit to a favorable height.

To lift the mower safely and with ease, you need a reliable and robust lawnmower lift. In the sections below, you can read about the best zero-turn lawn mower lifts that we could find online. 

Product NameBest Feature /b> Lift CapacityMaximum Lift Height  Price
MoJack PROMoJack750 lb.28 inches
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Goplus High Lift JackGoplus300 lb.25 inches
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T-5355A Pro-LifT550 pounds23.5 inches
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1.MoJack PRO - Residential Riding Lawn Mower Lift

MoJack PRO

In the field of zero-turn lawn mower lifts, the Pro model by MoJack is a truly universal soldier! 

It can securely and steadily lift up virtually any unit whose weight does not exceed 750 lbs.

Yet, we recommend that you use this lift for mowers of up to about 700 lbs. in weight, just in case. This lift has an outside front wheel measurement of 31.5 inches to 62.5 inches.

Also, this model excels in terms of its maximum lift height, which is 28 inches. This is full three inches below its closest rival, the mighty High Lift Jack by GoPlus! The MoJack Workbench attachment is great for work on push mowers and other small units. Unfortunately, it is sold separately.

Pros

  • High maximum weight lift capacity
  • The highest lifting device on the market

Cons

  • Workbench attachment is sold separately

 

2.Goplus Zero Turn Mower Lift

Goplus Mower Lift High Lift Jack for Tractors and Zero

If you are serious about the landscaping business, you will need a lawnmower lift.

Goplus’s high-lift jack for zero-turn riding lawn mowers has a maximum lifting capacity of just 300 lb.

Yet, it resides on the second position on our mini list, because it is capable of hoisting your mower at a height of 25 inches.

You can easily adjust the height between ¼ inches to 25 inches depending on your needs. Moreover, its width is also adjustable so it can easily fit different zero-turn lawn mower models.

Its robust wheels allow you to move the lawnmower around the garage once it has been hoisted and secured in place.

Pros

  • The robust wheels add extra mobility
  • Adjustable lift height of up to 25 inches
  • Fits multiple lawn mower models

Cons

  • Hoisting capacity is just 300 lbs.

 

3.Pro-LifT T-5355A

Pro-LifT T-5355A 550 Pound Capacity Lawn Mower Lift

We liked this lawn mower lift by ProLift for its ingenious design – it’s got a rubber-padded platform that effectively prevents unwanted scratching.

Its maximum hoisting capacity is 550 pounds, which means it can lift most commercial-grade zero-turn mowers in the 42 to 54-inch class,

 For better support of the load, we recommend that you use its safety lock. Use the non-slip pedal to lift your mower at the desired height.

Unfortunately, for this model the highest hoist is at just about 23 inches. Once you’ve lifted up your mower, do not forget to secure the locking lever.

Pros

  • Non-slip pedal for faster hoisting
  • It can support different load types
  • Can lift up to 550 lbs.

Cons

  • Issues with the hydraulic jack have been reported

Buyer’s Guide: What To Look For 

If there’s one thing you should really keep your eyes open for when buying a zero-turn lawn mower, it’s the tank capacity.

If you’ve been thinking about the engine, look at the sections above again. You will see that all engines have been made by world-class manufacturers and are of superior quality.

The problem that we’ve seen in more than one model so far is that oftentimes the tank just isn’t big enough to feed the mower’s huge muscle, jam-packed with 20+ HP. You may also come to think that speed is important.

Well, it is not a major consideration unless, of course, you are going to use your zero-turn lawn mower for racing. Yet, it’s useful if your unit has got a reverse speed. A better look at the transmission, instead. The naked truth is that a poor-quality transmission can give you a pretty bumpy ride.

The mowing deck’s size is one of the most important things to take into account when shopping for a zero-turn lawnmower. And yet, please keep in mind that bigger mowing decks are always heavier and they should be complemented with a more powerful engine and a bigger tank.

And, finally, we come to the cutting height options. The rule here is simple – the more, the better! You should also look at your mower’s tires.

They should be turf-friendly and yet provide a decent grip. The seat is also important. The more comfortable it is, the more work you’ll get done before your back gets tired. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

In the paragraphs that follow we are going to answer some of the trendiest and most topical questions about your commercial-grade zero-turn lawnmower.

1.What is the highest-rated zero turn mower?

It appears as if our sixth candidate, Husqvarna Z254, has the highest general rating based on user reviews.

2.Does John Deere make a zero-turn mower with a steering wheel?

In the 1970s, John Deere used to make zero-turn lawn mowers with a steering wheel.

3.What is the best zero-turn mower under $5000?

It appears that our fifth candidate, Ariens 915223 IKON-X, is the best zero-turn mower under $5000. 

4. What is the best zero-turn mower for your money?

Our tireless testers have established that Troy-Bilt’s Mustang 54 model is the best-value zero-turn lawnmower at the moment.

5. How many acres does a riding mower need?

A riding mower needs at least three acres of mowing space in order to justify the initial investment.

6.What size mower do I need for 3 acres?

Our eighth candidate, Ariens 915213, is the best zero-turn lawn mower for three acres. It’s got a 19-HP motor and a 42-inch mowing deck. In general, you do not need anything bigger for such small landscaping tasks.

Few Winning Models

Looking at the large table above, one cannot fail to notice that the field of zero-turn lawn mowers is currently dominated by Ariens. This means that they offer the widest variety of zero-turn lawn mowers at the most affordable prices.

The other big names in this business are Husqvarna and Snapper, each having two candidates on our list. The above mower is exceptionally reliable. However, the cost of the unit is more than most of the Ariens models.

Cub Cadet is currently the only zero-turn lawnmower maker to offer a model with a steering wheel. Before going for it, we suggest that you ask yourself if you really need a lawnmower with a steering wheel. Remember that it still does not drive like a sedan.

Finally, Troy-Bilt’s Mustang 54 model is also among our favorites because of its agility and versatility. Last but not least, it is covered by a 3-year limited warranty.

When it comes to zero-turn lawn mower lifts, something that is definitely worth buying, our clear-cut winner is MoJack PRO’s Residential Riding Lawn Mower Lift.

It has the highest lifting capacity of 750 lbs and can hoist your mower at full 28 inches. Last, but not least, its design is also quite sleek.

 

Last update on 2019-11-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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