The size of your property greatly impacts how long it will take you to mow it. If you have a large lawn, all you need is the best 42-inch riding mower to completely trim grass in less than an hour.
Riding the mower is one of the easiest and most fun ways to keep your lawn free of tall unpleasant grass, especially if you have to cover a wide area. The 42-inch lawnmower is the perfect size for both residential and commercial yards.
To make the buying process easier for you, we shortlisted only the safest, most comfortable, and reliable vehicles. We have also included the features that you must look for to ensure the right purchase.
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Best 42 Inch Riding Mower Review 2020
For homes with yards that are too large to mow with a push mower, take a look at these 42-inch options that can mow an acre or 2 up to 4 acres in a single refuel.
Husqvarna Z142 Hydrostatic Zero-Turn Riding Mower
First on the list is a zero-turn riding mower. If you are looking for the best 42-inch ride-on mower with a zero turning radius, this Z142 presents an ideal vehicle worthy of your investment.
It is powered by a 17 HP Kohler engine with foot-controlled hydrostatic transmission. The engine has a maximum speed of 6.5 mph and a displacement of 597cc.
Instead of having belts, the vehicle uses a hydrostatic pump that delivers power from the engine to the wheels. This allows you to have fume-free mowing, which makes it safe for home use.
The mower vehicle also has a 43-inch cutting deck. It is made of reinforced heavy flat-stock steel for optimum durability.
To improve grass cutting, Husqvarna uses air induction mowing technology on the Z142. This technology improves the airflow within the deck, which would consistently deliver consistent cuts. It also uses a convenient deck lift system that is spring-assisted for ease of use.
The best thing about the mower is its zero turning radius. This allows you to closely cut through flowerbeds, decorative rocks, or boulders as well as other obstacles found in your lawn.
For added comfort and ease of use, the saddles are cushioned, and you have ample leg space for stretching. It also has an anti-slip foot area to ensure your feet are firmly placed.
Husqvarna YTH18542 Hydrostatic Riding Mower
If budget is your number one priority, the YTH18542 presents the best 42-inch riding mower for the money. Nevertheless, you can expect performance and unparalleled results with this vehicle.
It uses an 18.5 single-cylinder Briggs & Stratton engine with a fuel tank that has a capacity to hold 2.5 gallons of fuel. It delivers power output or displacement of 500cc to 540cc.
In addition to that, the transmission used on the vehicle is hydrostatic. With this, it uses a hydrostatic pump to deliver power from the engine to the wheels. It is foot pedal-operated which is similar to how you step on the gas when driving vehicles. This allows you to keep both your hands on the steering wheel.
The vehicle also enables you to mow in tighter spaces and efficiently navigate through obstacles like pots and benches with its turning radius of 16 inches. More on its maneuverability, dual anti-scalp wheels are used.
Aside from that, its 42-inch cutting deck uses air induction mowing technology to ensure the quality of grass cutting. Moreover, it has dual anti-scalp wheels that are used to ensure that the cutting deck will not come into contact with the ground when passing over an elevated spot.
For ease of use and comfort when driving, it has a 13-inch mid-back seat, ergonomic non-slip steering wheel, and easy step-through foot pedal.
Finally, this lawnmower can be operated backward, thanks to its reverse operating system. You can now mow the areas or patches you missed with a simple turn of a switch!
Related Guide: Zero Turn Mowers
Troy Bilt Horse Hydrostatic Lawn Riding Mower
The final vehicle on the list is considered one of the best-rated 42-inch riding lawnmower. It is no other than a Troy Bilt hydrostatic ride-on mower.
This vehicle draws power from the manufacturer’s 579cc engine. It works side-by-side with a foot-controlled hydrostatic transmission to keep your hands on the steering wheel. The engine has a 1.36-gallon fuel capacity. This allows you to mow your lawn for hours without having to refuel every now and then.
For enhanced traction and control, Turfsaver tires are used on the front and rear wheels.
It also has a 42-inch side discharge mowing deck, which can cut grass in reverse, thanks to its easy gear shift. With that, there is no need for clutching and shifting between ground speed ranges.
What’s more? It has multiple deck height adjustments that deliver 6 different cutting length options to cater to all your needs.
To make driving extra comfortable, the lawnmower has a deluxe high backseat and soft, anti-slip steering wheel. Despite the enclosed front structure, there is ample space between the seat and the control panel. This allows stretching and does not limit the movement of the legs.
Finally, it has an integrated deck wash system. With a quick coupler and garden hose, you will not have to worry about kneeling down to get rid of stuck clippings.
Related Review: Lawn Mower Engine
Things to Consider Before Buying
Take a look at the following features to look for when scouting for a 42-inch riding lawn mower to help you determine your best option.
There are two types of lawnmowers: gas and electric-powered.
When it comes to gas mowers, you can choose between a standard size and an oversized one. The standard size can hold up to four gallons of gas, which is applicable for most lawns.
Between gas and electric-powered, the latter is the best option as fumes are not emitted to the environment. The only downside is you need to operate off a rechargeable battery that needs to be plugged into every after job.
Between single-speed and multi-speed mowers, it is still better to have the latter. Multi-speed mowers deliver up to seven speeds, and they allow you to adjust accordingly, depending on the terrain you are coursing.
There are three factors that affect the handling of a riding lawn mower, they are the turning radius, traction, and suspension.
The turning radius of a riding lawn mower determines the efficiency of its navigation. Particularly in avoiding flowerbeds and other obstacles.
Traction is its ability to grip the ground. To obtain the best grip, you must follow the simple formula of tires and engine power.
Finally, suspension minimizes the bumps, impacts, and vibrations as the vehicle courses rough terrain.
If you have all three factors considered, you will know you are looking at the best 42-inch riding lawn mowers with amazing handling.
There are three types of transmissions used on riding lawnmowers. Included are the manual, automatic, and hydrostatic.
A manual tranny allows for a range of set speeds. It lets you shift up or down without the need to stop or step on a clutch.
On the other hand, the automatic enables you to control the speed through the gas pedal.
Finally, the hydrostatic transmission uses fluids to transfer power from the engine to the wheels instead of belts. It offers the smoothest ride and requires less maintenance.
If your lawn is filled with obstacles like flowerbeds and decorative rocks, you must look for a vehicle that has front caster wheels. These kinds of wheels can pivot at sharper angles to avoid objects. There are vehicles that allow full control over cutting closely around obstacles using lap bars or levers.
Frequently Asked Questions
The most common types of air filters used on most riding lawn mowers are the foam air filter and the dual filter system.
With hot water, liquid soap that cuts grease, and motor oil, you can keep the foam on your foam filter system clean as well as the paper and foam filter clean on your dual filter system.
It is not advisable to use any kind of lawnmower without a filter. Since the engine draws air through the intake port when operating, dirt and debris can get into the piston cylinder and the gasket, which can damage the vehicle.
Assuming you have flat terrain with few obstacles, you can mow an acre of lawn in less than 30 minutes. At this rate, riding a 42-inch lawnmower should allow you to mow a 4-acre lawn in less than 2 hours.
A hydrostatic lawn mower transmission is a combination of a hydraulic pump and a hydraulic motor to power the vehicle. It delivers multiple speeds instead of preset gear speeds. It is best used for different kinds of terrain.
A ride-on mower is expected to operate for over 7 to 10 years depending on the integrity of the vehicle and how well it is maintained by the user.
If you have a lawn the size of an acre or above, the best 42-inch riding mowers enable you to efficiently cut grass. Imagine the amount of money you can save from investing in a durable vehicle. Surely, the convenience and the results will be proof that you obtained an amazing ride-on mower.