20 Pros and Cons of Rear Discharge Mower

Pros And Cons Of Rear Discharge Mower

If you’re in the market for a new lawn mower, you may be considering a rear discharge mower. These types of mowers are designed to cut grass and eject clippings out of the back of the machine.

While they can be effective for certain lawns and situations, there are also some downsides to consider before making your purchase. One advantage of a rear discharge mower is the ability to easily maneuver around obstacles like trees and flower beds. The clippings are ejected out of the back, which means you won’t have to worry about them getting stuck on fences or other structures nearby.

Plus, since the clippings are spread evenly across your lawn instead of being collected in a bag, they can act as natural fertilizer for your grass. However, there are also some potential drawbacks to this type of mower that you should keep in mind before making a decision.

Pros of Rear Discharge Mower

  1. Efficient Cut: Rear discharge mowers typically provide an even and consistent cut. This is because the clippings are immediately expelled out the back, ensuring that they don’t get recut or interfere with the blade. This can result in a smoother, more polished-looking lawn.
  2. Safety for Bystanders: Since the clippings are discharged at the rear, there’s a lower risk of debris being thrown sideways which can be hazardous. This can be especially important in areas where people or pets might be present, reducing potential injuries from flying debris.
  3. Less Clumping: The clippings are spread out thinly and evenly, which means less chance of them clumping together. This is beneficial as clumps of grass can smother and kill the underlying grass, leaving unsightly patches on the lawn.
  4. Adaptability to Tall Grass: Rear discharge mowers can handle tall grass more effectively. They don’t clog up as easily as side-discharge models, ensuring that even in challenging mowing conditions, they can function efficiently.
  5. Requires Fewer Passes: As the grass clippings are distributed evenly across the lawn, there might be no need for additional passes to spread them out. This can save time and energy when mowing large areas.
  6. Versatility: They are often versatile and can be adapted to bagging or mulching if necessary. This flexibility can be advantageous for those who might occasionally want to collect or mulch their clippings.
  7. Decreased Landscape Damage: There’s a reduced risk of landscape damage as there’s no side chute that can hit trees, shrubs, or flowers. This can preserve the overall aesthetic and health of a garden or landscape.
  8. Less Windrowing: With rear discharge, there’s less chance of windrowing (lines of clippings left behind). This can result in a cleaner-looking lawn after mowing.
  9. Reduced Mower Width: Since there’s no side discharge chute, the overall width of the mower can be reduced. This can make it easier to navigate through narrow spaces or store the mower.
  10. Uniformity in Wet Conditions: Even in wet conditions, rear discharge mowers can spread clippings uniformly. This reduces the likelihood of wet clumps being left behind on the lawn.

Cons of Rear Discharge Mower

  1. Potential for Footwear Soiling: With clippings being expelled at the rear, there’s a possibility of them getting onto the operator’s footwear, especially if moving backward. This can be inconvenient and messy.
  2. Lack of Collection: Unlike mowers with bagging systems, rear discharge mowers don’t automatically collect clippings. This means if you want a completely clean lawn, you might have to rake or collect the clippings separately.
  3. May Require Additional Cleanup: Due to the spread of clippings, there may be a need for additional cleanup, especially if mowing areas near pathways, driveways, or patios. This can add extra time to the lawn care process.
  4. Possible Grass Buildup Under Deck: Over time, grass might accumulate under the mower’s deck. This can affect the mower’s performance and might require more frequent cleaning.
  5. Potential Strain on Engine: The design might put extra strain on the mower’s engine, especially if the grass is wet or thick. This could result in decreased engine lifespan if not properly maintained.
  6. Reduced Visibility of Discharge: The operator might not always see where the clippings are going, which could be a disadvantage if trying to direct clippings away from specific areas.
  7. Limited Options in the Market: There might be fewer models of rear discharge mowers available in the market when compared to side-discharge or mulching mowers. This can limit choices when shopping.
  8. Possible Uneven Spread: If not designed efficiently, some rear discharge mowers might not spread the clippings as evenly as expected. This could result in patches of thicker clippings in some areas.
  9. Might Not Work Well on Slopes: If mowing on a slope or hill, the clippings could potentially roll or slide back onto the mowed area. This can be especially problematic if the grass is wet.
  10. Potential for Increased Wear on Rear Wheels: As clippings are constantly being thrown out at the rear, the rear wheels might experience more wear and tear. This could mean more frequent replacements or maintenance.
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Advantages of Rear Discharge Mowers

You’ll love how easily grass clippings disappear with this innovative mower design! Rear discharge mowers have a lot of benefits that make them worth considering when you’re in the market for a new lawn mower.

One of the best features of rear discharge mowers is that they can handle tall and wet grass without clogging or leaving behind unsightly clumps. This is because the clippings are discharged out of the back of the mower, which allows for better airflow and less buildup underneath the deck.

Another benefit of rear discharge mowers is that they leave your lawn looking neat and well-manicured. The clippings are dispersed evenly throughout your yard, which helps to fertilize it naturally. In addition, there’s no need to worry about accidentally blowing grass clippings onto your driveway or walkway because everything stays contained within your yard.

Overall, if you’re looking for a reliable and effective way to keep your lawn looking great all season long, consider investing in a rear discharge mower!

Disadvantages of Rear Discharge Mowers

If you’re looking for a mower that keeps your lawn looking pristine without creating a messy trail, it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack. While rear discharge mowers have their advantages, they also come with some notable disadvantages.

One of the biggest challenges is reduced visibility due to the direction of the discharge. Grass clippings can easily fly up and obscure your view, making it harder to navigate around obstacles.

In addition to visual impairment, grass clippings can be another drawback of rear discharge mowers. Without proper containment or management, cut grass can create an unsightly mess on your property and even cause damage to nearby structures or vehicles.

It’s important to consider these potential downsides before investing in a rear discharge mower and ensure that you have appropriate solutions in place for managing any issues that may arise.

Considerations When Choosing a Rear Discharge Mower

When it comes to choosing the perfect lawn-mowing tool for you, there are some important factors to keep in mind that will help you make a wise decision.

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One of the first things to consider is the cutting height that you want for your grass. Rear discharge mowers typically have adjustable cutting heights which give you more control over how short or long you want your grass to be. This feature is great if you have uneven terrain or varying types of grass in your yard.

Another consideration when choosing a rear discharge mower is maneuverability. These mowers tend to be heavier and wider than other types of mowers, so it’s important to choose one with easy-to-use steering and good turning radius. Look for models that have features like zero-turn technology or four-wheel drive, as these can make it easier to navigate around obstacles like trees and shrubs.

Overall, when selecting a rear discharge mower, take into account what features will make your lawn-mowing experience efficient and effective.

Maintenance and Care for Rear Discharge Mowers

To keep your grass-cutting machine running smoothly, you’ll need to give it regular TLC, like a car needing oil changes and tune-ups. Rear discharge mowers require specific maintenance and care to ensure that they remain in good working condition. Here are four things you should do to take care of your rear discharge mower:

  • Sharpening blades: The blades on a rear discharge mower can become dull over time, which can result in an uneven cut or missed spots. To avoid this problem, it’s important to sharpen the blades regularly.
  • Cleaning deck: Grass clippings and debris can build up on the underside of the deck, which can cause rust and corrosion if left unchecked. Make sure to clean out the deck after each use to prevent this from happening.
  • Checking oil levels: Like any engine-powered device, a rear discharge mower needs oil to run properly. Check the oil level before each use and add more as needed.
  • Inspecting belts: The belts on a rear discharge mower help power the blades and move the machine forward. Check them periodically for wear or damage, and replace them when necessary.

By following these simple maintenance steps, you can extend the life of your rear discharge mower and keep it cutting grass effectively for years to come.

Alternatives to Rear Discharge Mowers

Looking for a different type of grass-cutting machine that might better suit your needs? Rear discharge mowers may have their benefits, but there are also alternatives worth considering. Mulching mowers and side discharge mowers are two popular options to explore.

Mulching mowers use special blades to chop up grass clippings into tiny pieces that can be left on the lawn as natural fertilizer. This eliminates the need for bagging and disposal, making it a more eco-friendly option. Side discharge mowers, on the other hand, simply shoot grass clippings out to the side of the mower as you cut. While this means you’ll need to go back and clean up any stray clippings, it also allows for faster cutting times since you don’t have to stop and empty a bag or wait for mulched clippings to decompose. Ultimately, which type of mower you choose will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Take some time to research and compare features before making a decision.

Mulching MowerSide Discharge Mower
Eco-friendlyFaster cutting times
No bagging or disposal neededNo waiting for clippings to decompose
Natural fertilization for lawnStray clippings may need cleaning up

Frequently Asked Questions

How does a rear discharge mower compare to a side discharge mower in terms of grass clippings distribution?

Are you tired of dealing with uneven grass clippings distribution when mowing your lawn? Consider a rear discharge mower over a side discharge one.

With a rear discharge mower, the grass clippings are evenly distributed behind the machine, resulting in a neater appearance and less need for raking or cleanup after mowing.

In comparison, a side discharge mower can leave clumps of grass and create an unsightly mess on your lawn.

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So if you want to save time and effort while achieving a professional-looking cut, opt for a rear discharge mower for better grass clippings distribution.

Can a rear discharge mower be used on uneven terrain or steep slopes?

If you’re considering using a rear discharge mower on hills or bumpy terrain, it’s important to know that they can handle these types of conditions. Rear discharge mowers are designed with a powerful engine and sturdy wheels that allow them to navigate uneven ground without getting stuck or tipping over.

However, it’s still important to use caution when operating these mowers on steep slopes or rough terrain, as the weight distribution can be affected and cause instability.

Overall, if you have hilly or bumpy property, a rear discharge mower can be a great tool for keeping your lawn looking neat and tidy.

What is the average lifespan of a rear discharge mower?

Are you wondering how long your rear discharge mower will last? The average lifespan of a rear discharge mower can vary depending on the brand and model, but with proper maintenance, it should last between 8-10 years.

It’s important to compare the expected lifespan of different mowers before making a purchase. Keep in mind that regular maintenance is crucial for extending the life of your mower. This includes cleaning debris from under the deck, sharpening blades, changing oil regularly, and checking spark plugs.

By staying on top of these tasks, you can ensure that your rear discharge mower lasts for many years to come.

Are rear discharge mowers more expensive than other types of mowers?

If you’re considering buying a rear discharge mower, you might be wondering if they’re more expensive than other types of mowers. Well, the answer is that it depends on the specific models you’re comparing.

Rear discharge mowers can range in price from relatively cheap to quite expensive, just like any other type of mower. So, when making a cost comparison between different types of mowers, it’s important to look at specific models and compare their prices directly.

Additionally, upkeep and maintenance requirements should also be considered as they can impact the long-term cost of ownership for any mower type.

Does a rear discharge mower require a special type of blade?

Did you know that rear discharge mowers require a specific type of blade for optimal performance?

Blade compatibility is an important factor to consider when using this type of mower. The blades must be designed to discharge the grass clippings out of the back, rather than the sides, which can result in uneven cuts and clogging.

It’s important to check the manufacturer’s recommendations for blade size and style before making a purchase. Additionally, because rear discharge mowers have more components involved in their design, they may require more maintenance than other types of mowers.

However, with proper upkeep and blade compatibility, a rear discharge mower can provide efficient and effective lawn care results.


Now that you know the pros and cons of rear discharge mowers, it’s important to consider your specific needs when choosing a mower.

Think about the size of your lawn, the type of terrain, and how much time you want to invest in maintenance.

Remember that while rear discharge mowers offer benefits like improved cutting performance and reduced clumping, they may not be suitable for everyone.

Just like with any decision, there are trade-offs to be made.

Choosing a rear discharge mower is like choosing a dance partner – you need to find one that complements your style and moves smoothly across the floor.

With careful consideration and proper care, a rear discharge mower can be a reliable companion in keeping your lawn looking fresh and clean without leaving behind unsightly grass clippings.

So go ahead – take the first step onto the dance floor with confidence!