Best Riding Lawn Mower for Hills (Top 10 Reviews of 2020)

Best Riding Lawn Mower for Hills

As far as maintenance goes, you owe it to yourself to keep everything as it deserves to be. it will be hard to notice as the grass grows inch by inch. Taking this into account you owe it to yourself to get the Best Riding Lawn Mower for Hills.

After so much procrastination, we end up seeking of ways to get rid of it after it’s too late. The truth is that most people end up ditching their walk-behind mowers because they are physically unable or are just unwilling to push it.

Well, this turns out to be your lucky day. Brace yourself because I’m about to bring the noise…

We’ll be looking at some of the most important features you should look into before actually getting yourself a mower. Regarding the nature of your lawn, you should be able to choose either of these three: the rear engine, the tractor or the zero turn mowers.

Without further ado, let’s have a look at what distinguishes the best from the rest…

To cut to the chase and save you the trouble of reading through the whole review, let’s have a look at 3 of our best riding lawn mowers for hills.

Image Name Rating Price
Troy-Bilt Riding Lawn Mower 9.7/10 Check on Amazon
Poulan Pro Riding Mower 9.7/10 Check on Amazon
Husqvarna Riding Lawn Mower 9.5/10 Check on Amazon

How to Choose the Best Riding Lawn Mower for Hills

Before order one or go shopping for one, do pay attention to the following areas.

What you should consider in overall when choosing the best mower for hills

  • The engine displacement: This simply describes the size of the cylinder in the engine. The displacement is measured in cubic centimeters(cc) and the higher the cc the more powerful the engine is.
  • Engine horsepower (HP): This refers to the power of the engine that is available for use by the other mower components such as the blades and the transmission
  • The cut width: This tells us how wide a portion of grass the mower can cut in a single pass. It is directly proportional to blade number hence the more the better.
  • Turning radius: This describes how tightly you can turn the mower. With a smaller turning radius, you can make sharper turns and it comes in handy especially if there are obstacles on your lawn.
  • Cruise control: This is available in the hydrostatic and automatic controls. It allows you to engage one speed for mowing long and straight stretches of land.
  • Speed: This varies from one model to another. In general, garden tractors offer forward speeds of 5mph while the ZRTs have about 8mph.

Check out the video review

10 Best Riding Lawn Mowers Reviews of 2020

Now that we know what to focus on when purchasing a riding lawn mower, let’s have a look at 10 of the most outstanding picks we’ve got for you in 2020.

#1 Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood

When it comes to choosing the standard and simple lawn mower, then this is definitely your choice and here’s why:

The mower comes with a 30-inch cutting deck that can be adjusted to 5 different positions. With this, you’ll be able to have just the perfect height to fit your convenience. The physical appearance of this mower allows you to enjoy the benefits of a riding mower and at the same time enjoy the size of a walk-behind mower.

Troy-Bilt 382cc 30-Inch Premium Neighborhood Riding Lawn MowerThe front wheels are 13×5 inches while the rear ones are 16×6.5 inches. The 18-inch turn radius comes in handy when you need to go through a narrow or rather difficult space.

The power take offs are manually controlled which makes blade engagement not only faster but also easier. Also, the fuel tank capacity includes a 1.3-gallon tank which also has a fuel sight window via which you can see the gas level.


  • Has got the 382cc OHV engine that lasts long and provides a clean performance.
  • The blade is adjustable to fit your convenient height.
  • 18-inch turn radius makes navigation easy


  • Before buying, consider checking the deck height to avoid scalping your lawn.

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#2 Poulan Pro P46ZX Briggs V-Twin Pro

If you’re all about getting the best performance, then this one’s for you. The Poulan Pro P46ZX Briggs gives you the best comfort, durability, and performance.

Here’s what you should expect from it:

It is run by the powerful 22 HP Briggs & Stratton Engine. This, backed up by the 3.5-gallon tank will offer you quite a large amount of time to completely maw your lawn. Also, considering that it has a 46-inch cutting width, you get to cover more ground in less time.

Poulan Pro P46ZX Briggs V-Twin Pro

Owing to the fact that it comes with the dual wheel hydro transmission, you, as the driver are able to get maximum maneuverability. The ability to control each of the wheels independently allows you to move in all directions just by moving your hands forwards or backward.

Considering that you will not be using your engine for as long a period of time as you would have when using other lawn mowers, you will be creating less wear to the machine.

Comes with a 6-position cutting height adjustment. You can be able to adjust the cutting height on the mower to anywhere between 1.5” and 4”. This allows you to get the ideal height regarding the level to which you want to do the trimming.


  • Easy maneuverability allows you to reach even the most difficult places on your lawn.
  • The large capacity has tank gives you more operation time.
  • 22HP engine with a 3.5 gallon keeps the mower working longer and better.


  • The control on the very sloppy ground is not the best.

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#3 Poulan Pro 960420182 Briggs 15.5 hp

The 42” deck is reinforced with vents which allow the mower to be able to draw air from the top of the deck. This ensures that there is a continuous flow of air even in the long grass. In addition to this, there are attachments that allow you to either mulch or bag the grass.

Poulan Pro 960420182 Briggs 15.5 hpComes with 6 different cutting positions. These allow you to enjoy the flexibility of adjusting the tractor’s cutting deck so that it is able to match the current condition of your yard as well as the desired length of your grass.

Here’s what makes it more interesting:

The Auto hydrostatic transmission makes it easy for you to adjust the speeds. Move the motion lever on the fender forwards to increase the speed or pull it back towards the neutral point to decrease the speed


  • The 6 different cutting positions allow you to adjust the height of the cutting deck to match your yard and grass length.
  • The auto hydrostatic transmission makes speed adjustment easy and simple.
  • The 42” deck is wide enough to get the work done much faster.


  • Doesn’t come with a foot drive.

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#4 Husqvarna MZ61 27 HP Zero Turn Mower, 61-Inch

Yet another one from Husqvarna is the Husqvarna MZ61 riding mower and from the looks of it so far, you can already tell that this one already does boast one hell of an engine.

But is there really more to it? Let’s take a closer look…

Husqvarna MZ61 27 HP Zero Turn Mower, 61-Inch

First off, in addition to the 27 HP powerful engine, it has got the hydrostatic gear transmission system which gives you a much smoother ride as compared to the auto and manual transmission. This makes it much easier for you to be able to engage a single speed while mowing all through.

The operator interface is also straightforward which qualifies this as an ideal choice even for first time users.

As for the cutting deck, there is an assisting pedal lift which makes lifting this much easier especially when it comes to cleaning the Husqvarna MZ61 for maintenance purposes. The cutting deck is also an outstanding 61 inches which makes it ideal for use in hilly areas.

As for the construction, it boasts a heavy duty steel frame that won’t give in to corrosion whatsoever and simultaneously protects all the critical internal mechanisms.


It does have a 3-blade cutting system which is bound to give you a really clean cut hence taking productivity, performance and comfort to a whole new level.


  • An assisting pedal lift for the cutting deck hence quick and easy maintenance.
  • A heavy duty steel frame construction for utmost durability.
  • It’s got a 3-blade cutting system for the cleanest cuts


  • Plan your travel paths carefully to avoid really steep downhills for the perfect cuts.

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#5 Husqvarna YTA24V48 24V Pedal Tractor Mower, 48″/Twin

Amazingly easy to use and at the same time guaranteed to get the job done ASAP. This riding mower from Husqvarna blows any other mowers in its class out of the water and the good news is that you won’t really have to break the bank to get one.

Husqvarna YTA24V48 24V

Let’s shave a closer look…

It comes with a fast auto transmission which means easy maneuverability, movement hence maintenance free operation while using the mower. With the auto transmission system, you’ll be using less power to control the mower and more power to do the cutting.

In order to ensure there is consistent cutting while using this mower every time, there is an air induction mowing technology which gives you an improved air flow technology in the deck.

There’s more…

For an easy operation of the fender, there is a convenient mounted deck lever which is spring assisted for hassle-free operation.


  • it features an auto-transmission for easy usability.
  • An air-induction mowing technology for consistent cutting.
  • A spring-assisted mounted deck lever for easy operation of the fender.


  • It’s not really that great to use on hills.

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#6 Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro Series Kohler

If you want to get the most out of what you spend on a riding lawn mower, then this is definitely the best choice for you.


The overall construction of the mower is sturdy and looks awesome. In addition to this, the steering wheel makes it quite easy for you to drive.

As compared to the other brands, the steering gears are stronger. This makes things easier considering that it has got a hydrostatic transmitter that allows you to go fast or slow as you desire with only one pedal. No gear shifting whatsoever.

Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro Series Kohler

The reverse mow feature makes things even more interesting. To do this, you have to depress the brakes, turn a key, push a button then engage the reverse pedal. Though this may seem to be quite a process, it’s better than having no reverse mow feature at all.

The capacity of the gas is large and in addition to this it uses up quite a little amount of power. This allows you to cover a lot of ground and at the same time save on power.


  • Comes with the reverse mow feature for added convenience.
  • Large capacity gas tank for longer use.
  • Has both the forward and reverse mow feature for added convenience.


  • The seat is a little bit rocky and you may fall off if you’re not careful.

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#7 Husqvarna Z246I 23HP

If you are all about getting something that is going to last a while before you have to refill the gas tank and at the same time get the most out of it, then this is your choice. The mower comes with the 23 HP Briggs & Stratton engine which will work flawlessly in most landscapes.

Comes with the hydrostatic transmission system. This gives you a smoother ride and unlike the manual and the automatic transmission, it will last longer as well.

Husqvarna Z246I 23HP

The 46” reinforced stamped deck gives you the advantage of being able to cover more ground. This also comes in handy when you want to save on fuel since you get more work done in a small span of time.

When it comes to the controls, the Husqvarna Z246I has got an ergonomic control panel that features the SmartSwitch technology. This practically places everything on your fingertips hence, in the long run, you get to have an added convenience.

A bonus feature:

The fact that it comes with LED headlights on it makes it one of the few mowers you can use even in the low light condition- definitely the best zero-turn mower for hills.


  • Has got the hydrostatic transmission system that is smooth to use and long-lasting all the same
  • The 23 HP Briggs & Stratton engine allows you to use it conveniently regardless of the nature of your terrain.
  • Has got LED lights for use even in low light conditions


  • The belts at times may squeak when the blades are disengaged.

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#8 Husqvarna 960430211 YTA18542 18.5 hp

Wouldn’t it be amazing if things were made far much simpler for you? Well, if you want a whole new mowing experience, be sure to have a look at the Husqvarna 960430211.

For starters, it comes with the air induction mowing technology. This is able to improve the airflow within the deck hence you get to have a consistent cut every time you use it.

Husqvarna 960430211 YTA18542 18.5 hp

The mower also has got a deck wash port that easily allows the connection of a water hose to the underside of your deck for washing. This reduces any chances of clogging which might, in turn, result in you having to replace the belt.

The convenient fender mounted deck lever is assisted with a spring which makes it easy to operate.


The fact that the mower comes with an auto transmission system saves you most of the hard work when it comes to moving around.


  • Has got the deck wash port that allows for easy connection of the water hose when it comes to cleaning.
  • Air induction mowing technology- this improves the flow of air within the deck hence consistent cutting all the time
  • Comes with a deck wash port that makes cleaning easier.


  • To some, the cushioning on the seat may take sometimes to get used to.

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#9 Troy-Bilt 540cc Briggs & Stratton Intek Automatic

Looking for the best riding lawn mower for hills? Well, this might just be your lucky day. With the Troy-Bilt 540cc, you get to have an outstanding 19HP Briggs & Stratton Intek engine that you can depend on and more so, there is the Foot-pedal automatic transmission.

Troy-Bilt 540cc Briggs & Stratton Intek Automatic Riding Lawnmower

Comes with a 46-inch side discharge mowing deck and even better, you get to enjoy mow in reverse capabilities which are not something you get every day on a riding lawn mower.

Features the power and operator comfort which makes it ideal for mowing large areas which most mowers in its class cannot handle.


The Troy-Bilt 540cc just happens to be one of the most comfortable mowers out there. First, it comes with a soft touch steering which makes movement quite easily. Secondly, the mid-back seat sure will give you ultimate comfort

Finally, it is worth mentioning that the integrated deck wash system makes it easy for you to clean up. The deck is also adjustable to 5 different positions so as to fit your desired cut.


  • The auto transmission system makes it easy to control.
  • Comes with a mid-back seat which gives you utmost comfort.
  • The deck is adjustable to 5 positions that allows you to cut to just the perfect height.


  • The single slow speed range in reverse may not be that appealing.

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#10 Poulan Pro 967331001 P54ZX Briggs

The Populan PRO ZTR’s are reputed for giving the users the shortest mowing time. This is simply made possible mainly by the ability of the mower to be able to move around obstacles with ease. The time you take to mow your yard, however, depends on different factors such as obstacles and the nature of slope.

Comes with the 54-inch mowing deck which also adds on to covering more ground hence spend less time on your lawn.

Poulan Pro 967331001 P54ZX Briggs

With the capability to adjust the cutting height to 6 different positions between 1.5” and 4”, you get your desired height just right.

Owing to the fact that it has got a 3.5-gallon fuel tank, you get to refill it less often. Also, regarding other features such as the ease of maneuverability and he wide mowing deck, you’ll use up less fuel in the long run.

The mower also comes with most parts preassembled and all you need to put together is the seat and the control arms then you’re good to go. definitely the best zero turn mower for hills


  • Easy movement- the dual wheel hydro transmission gives you the advantage of moving around obstacles easily.
  • The fact that you won’t be working your engine for long allows the mower to last longer due to less wear.
  • The cutting deck is adjustable to 6 positions to give you the ideal cutting height.


  • You may find it slow especially if you’ll be using it in large tracts of land.

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#11 Husqvarna YTH2042 42-Inch 540cc

Looking for a heavy-duty mower, then this riding tractor from Husqvarna will definitely blow your mind. The Husqvarna YTH2042comes with an outstanding 20HP Briggs & Stratton engine. This allows it to handle most challenges that other mowers can’t.

Has got the anti-scalp wheels which means that you won’t have to worry about having an uneven lawn at all. The cutting width of the deck is 42 inches; this allows you to cover more ground which not most mowers in its class allow you to do.

With the deck wash port, you get to connect a water hose via the port to easily clean the underside of the deck.

Husqvarna YTH2042 42-Inch 540cc

Added comfort:

It’s not the best riding mower for hills in vain. This mower comes with an ergonomic steering wheel that is angled to ensure the rider gets optimal positioning while seated. The step through design makes it easy for you to mount and dismount the tractor. Also, the fact that it comes with a cup holder keeps you refreshed all the time.


  • Comes with the Tuff Torq hydrostatic transmission which is smoother and durable
  • Both forward and reverse mowing. 5.2mph and 2.9 mph speeds for forward and reverse respectively.
  • Has got the deck wash port that makes cleaning easier


  • The blade stops when you switch to reverse while it is turning.

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Types of Riding Lawn Mowers

#1 The rear engine riding mowers

The rear engine riding mower

If you’re one who’s looking for a relaxing, comfortable and easy mowing experience, then you should definitely consider having a look at the rear engine mower.

Here’s why:

Considering their smaller cutting decks, the rear riders turn out to be quite ideal for mowing yards that have got narrow passes such as a fence gate. The reason as to why most people go for these, however, is that they are cheap hence a better alternative to the tractors and mowers. Also, they take up less space in your shed or garage.

  • Manual vs automatic transmission

Also, the rear engine mowers come with two types of transmission systems; manual and automatic. For the former, there is a disc-drive which is just as efficient as it is cost effective and the transmission is also easy to maintain. You, however, have to change the gears manually.

As for the automated transmission system, the mowers use hydrostatic transmissions which change the gears automatically as you accelerate or decelerate. This gives you a gentle ride in the long run

  • Consider the cutting width

This is something that’s worth considering if you want the best mower for hills with a rear engine. the large the deck size, the more grass you’re going to cut with each pass. Don’t go too big, however, you can measure your gates before buying one

#2 Lawn garden tractors

If you want something more than the average mowing you’re used to, then you should go for the lawn tractors and the garden tractors.

Due to the powerful engines they possess, they are built to operate like work-horses on your property. They will be able to haul heavy attachments as well which could not be possible if you were using the rear engine mowers.

Though they are not the fastest and easy to maneuver, they are big and strong just like the linemen on a football field. If you’re looking for high speeds, then don’t consider buying these at all.

The difference between the lawn tractors and the garden tractors

When it comes to purchasing either, the determining factor should not be primarily being around cutting grass alone but rather about all the other activities around your yard.

Simply put, if you want to cut the grass and at the same time perform light yard work, then a lawn tractor is what you need. On the other hand, if you want something for more heavy-duty chores like tilling and cultivating, then a garden tractor is what you need.

  • Lawn tractors

These, as compared to the garden tractors have got a lighter duty, a lower torque transmission, less horse power and smaller tires as well. they pack enough strength to move around light carts and spreaders.

The lawn tractors can also be converted to snow plows or snow blowers when winter comes. It is worth mentioning that some of the lawn tractors are ideal for handling advanced lawn work such as spraying, detaching, spreading or aerating.

So as to use it best and have a stable experience on uneven terrain, go for the lawn tractors that have a locking rear differential; though you won’t have the forward speed, there will be better stability on slopes.

  • Garden tractors

These are like the larger version of the lawn tractors. The garden tractors are ideal when it comes to handling more complicated and heavier tasks such as tilling, furrowing or towing heavier cart loads.

At the least, they come with 24 horse power engines and the rear tires are larger for better ground clearance. The larger wheels also give better stability on slopes and inclined grounds.

If you are using the tractor on slopes that are greater than 15 degrees, go for the one that has a traction control system or a locking differential.

#3 Zero turn mowers

Zero turn mowers


Let’s try to keep it simple here, shall we? Think of the lawn garden tractors as the line men and the zero turn lawn mowers as the running backs and receivers on the team.

Here’s what makes them as good as they are:

The best zero turn mower for hills will move through your lawn at speeds as much as 8mph and the best part about them actually is that they can make a 360 degree turn without any hassles.

Due to their outstanding steering system, these mowers simply give you faster speeds and improved maneuverability to save you most of the time as you mow your lawn.

Here are some of the types of zero turn lawn mowers:

  • The entry level mower

If you want the excitement of a zero turn but at the same time are on a budget, this is your choice. These will allow you to cut your lawn twice as fast as your tractor. The engines are, however, less powerful and the gas tanks are smaller.

The speeds max out at 6-7mph. the components used in their construction are also cheaper.

  • Mid-grade zero turn mowers

Need an upgrade to the entry level zero turn mower, consider having a look at these.

The mower decks for starters are more durable and the steel they’re constructed form is a heavier gauge. For added strength, they are welded at all the critical joints. This makes them the ideal choice when it comes to handling heavier loads.

Other popular features here are a foot controlled deck height adjustment as well as more comfortable seats.

  • Semi-pro

Being a popular choice with the landscaping entrepreneurs who can’t get themselves the big leagues, the semi-pros are the best lawn mower for hills if you have a large property.

Here’s why:

With these, you get to have the ideal mower for everyday use. The steel is a heavier gauge and as for the fuel tanks, well, they’re larger since this mower is expected to do quite a lot of work. The transmission is also of a heavier duty.

The semi-pros can reach an acceleration of 8mph and cover as much as 4-5 acres without having to stop for gas at all.

Comfort is also not overlooked in these. They’ve got a high back seat, adjustable arm rests, multiple cup holders as well as a cruise control.

  • Commercial zero-turn mowers

If you’ve got one of these, then you’ve got it all. These turn out to have the largest mowing decks, the most powerful engines as well as the largest fuel tanks.

The speed is the fastest and as expected from every feature being at its best, the price tags are also jaw-dropping.


We’ve now come to an end of our review the best riding lawn mower for hills and one thing that I think we can agree upon is that it is best you consider the nature of the ground you’ll want to use the mower on before you actually make your purchase.

If the land is large, then have a look at the engine as well as the speed and the level of comfort you get to have. You don’t want to be seated on your mower for long and end up with a back ache.

Paying attention to other things such as the deck width and also the transmission system and whether or not you can be able to use the mower on a sloppy ground should be considered. All things said you should ensure you get the best since you’ll be paying for it after all.

About the author

Kasia Nowicka

Hello! I am Kasia Nowicka and I love gardening. I've passed lots of my time in step hill gardening. Nurturers, who build beautiful prose from words, and coax life from seeds and soil. But, we need to take care of them. I am here to share my experience with those people who love to gardening.

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