Riding Lawn Mower vs. Zero Turn Riding Lawn Mowers: Pros and Cons

We’ve all seen professional lawn care folks on those funky-looking mowers, standing or sitting and zipping around. They look like they’d cut your mow time in half—and be a lot of fun in the process. But do you really need to ditch your regular riding mower in favor of a zero turn?

Here are the main differences:

  Residential Riding Lawn Mower/Tractor Residential Zero Turn
Engine Placement Up Front Behind the operator seat
Maneuverability Front engine placement usually has a turning radius of about 15-30 degrees. Zero turn means zero degree turning radius. The tight turn cuts down on mow time
Operational Ease Steering wheel – most people are used to this mode of steering and easily get the hang of it. Lap bars – steering with both hands separately can take practice to perfect. Some models do have steering wheels though.

Additional Uses (consult your operators manual for specifics)

Many have towing options on both the front and back and the ability to adhere snow plows. Many models are not built for towing. Consult with your dealer if you need towing ability.



If you’re considering a move to a residential zero turn lawn mower, it’s essential to weigh the pros and cons and examine your needs before taking the plunge. Consulting with your local dealer is always a good idea before deciding on a new piece of equipment. With all the important information in hand, you can make the best choice for you and your yard.