This robotic assistant was created with an ability to adapt to a number of different surfaces, implementing a solution that cuts the grass in an irregular pattern, thus leaving your lawn looking clean and pristine, without uneven areas or track line markers. It also produces less than 50 dB of noise.
The coating on the wheels wears off fairly quickly.
The McCulloch ROB 1000 will prove to be a pretty good fit for your average customer as it is one of the cheaper options on the market despite the fact that it offers solid performance as well as all of the necessary features that most people expect..
Up to 1000 m² lawns
20 - 50 mm
Mulching function, Alarm, PIN code, Installation lock, Auto-charging system, Time lock, Lift sensor, Tilt sensor
The broader distance between the blades and the edges of the casing coupled with the lift sensor make this a very safe product. This is essential to anybody who has pets or small children.
The docking station is painted in very bright colours which can get a bit grating.
This model is good and suitable for small spaces of up to 400 square metres. While this Flymo robotic lawn mower will keep your yard neat, tidy, and clean it also doesn't require a lot of maintenance, which makes it quite self-sustainable.
Up to 400 m² lawns
20 - 50 mm
Mulching function, PIN protection and alarm system, Auto-charging system, Obstruction sensor, Lift sensor, Tilt sensor
The lawn mower comes with a powerful 20V PowerShare™ battery, which is compatible with all cordless WORX tools. What is more, the minimalistic design of the charging dock is ideal for tidying the look of your lawn, making it compatible with virtually any yard out there.
The alarm system could be a tad bit louder.
If your lawn is less than 300 square metres in size and you are tired of mowing your lawn manually, then this robotic helper will be right up your alley. Small, fast, and quite smart it will trim the grass in your yard with ease to match.
Up to 300 m² lawns
20 - 50 mm
Automatic with AIA cutting technology
Mulching function, PIN protection and alarm system, Auto-Charging system, Obstruction sensor, Lift sensor, Tilt sensor
3 years (registration required)
The 3 razor-sharp blades of this lawn mower cut the grass evenly even if your lawn is uneven. Likewise, you can always adjust the cutting height so the lawn will be neat and tidy after it has been mowed.
The autonomous work time is less than impressive.
The Lawmmaster L10 has quite a few aces up its sleeve including a variety of smart features, as well as excellent traversal capabilities. Likewise, the big wheels in the back of the appliance allow the lawn mower to cover inclines of up to 35%. An excellent pick for a medium-sized lawn.
Up to 400 m² lawns
20 - 60 mm
Mulching function, PIN protection and alram system, Auto-charging system, Obstruction sensor, Lift sensor, Tilt sensor
The lawn mower's body is made of high-quality plastic that doesn't break or bend easily. On top of that, the housing boasts the IP65 protection class that firmly shields the inner components from dust and moisture.
The perimeter wire is a bit short for the coverage the lawn mower provides.
In case your lawn has a lot of trees, bushes, or other plants this model will be an optimal pick. Constructed to deal with steep inclines, small hills, and generally with obstacles in the way, it can mow large-sized lawns with relative ease.
Up to 600 m² lawns
20 - 60 mm
Mulching function, PIN protection and alarm system, Auto charging system, Obstruction sensor, Lift sensor, Tilt sensor
McCulloch ROB 1000
A Silent Robot
The McCulloch ROB 1000 is a pretty solid model that has quite a lot going for it. It doesn't lose to any model in its price category in terms of performance, all of the necessary features are there, and the price is more than fair. But if we had to point out the best thing about it, it would probably have to be the fact that this machine is virtually silent. The majority of robotic mowers produce a fair share of noise which can disturb the people around you as well as prevent you from enjoying a nice quiet lazy Sunday afternoon. That isn't the case with the ROB 1000. On the contrary, the model produces so little noise that you can even use it at night without having to deal with complaints from your neighbours. And while we're still on the subject of noise, this remote lawn mower comes equipped with an audible alarm that will protect it from theft.
With that out of the way, it is time to talk about performance. Performance-wise, it certainly isn't the most powerful option on the market but it gets the job done. And given how much the people behind this product are charging for it, what the model is capable of delivering is actually quite impressive. It offers 65 minutes of runtime and it takes the mower only about 50 minutes to fully recharge. That should be enough to cover up to a quarter of an acre, meaning it will be able to handle your average lawn with effortless ease.
The Ability to Adapt
Now that we have already mentioned the alarm, we thought it wouldn't hurt to talk about a few other features that this model comes equipped with. First off, we didn't say that bit about using this mower at night just for the sake of it. Since this model is fully programmable, you can tell it exactly how and when you want the robot to mow your lawn. Of course, we already said enough about when and, as for the how, this robotic assistant was created with the ability to adapt to a number of different surfaces, implementing a solution that cuts the grass in an irregular pattern, thus leaving your lawn looking clean and pristine, without uneven areas or track line markers.
In case you feel like the alarm wouldn't be enough to protect this little investment, the manufacturers also made sure to equip this robotic lawn mower with a PIN code so that nobody would be able to access it but you and whoever you shared the code with. To somewhat rephrase our earlier point, the McCulloch ROB 1000 will prove to be a pretty good fit for your average customer as it is one of the cheaper options on the market despite the fact that it offers solid performance. Everyone should find this robotic lawn mower to meet or exceed their expectations.
Avoids Obstacles and Pets
If you have pets or small children, you’re likely to be very worried about the safety of using a robotic lawn mower, afraid that the animal or your toddler might get hurt or damage the equipment. However, the Flymo 1200R won't hurt anyone and the likelihood of it being broken is incredibly small.
First off, this model has been designed with a broader distance between the edges of the casing and the blades, so there is no chance of a child touching the machine and being cut by a blade that pokes out. Plus, if the kid or a bigger pet decides to turn the appliance over, the blades will stop spinning automatically and won’t be able to hurt them.
There is also no chance of the lawn mower bumping into anybody on its path as a special obstruction sensor will detect people or animals in its path and veer away to prevent a collision.
The only part that might become a target of a curious tot or a rowdy dog is the docking station. It’s painted in bright, attractive colours, so you might consider repainting it to stop your child from trying to play with it.
Automatised and Efficient
Able to traverse slopes of up to 14°, the Flymo 1200R is not afraid of unkempt or bumpy gardens. The sharp blades beneath can cut grass in an area of 30 square metres per hour, working on up to 400 square metres in total. Just let the machine run through the night and you will see a well-trimmed lawn in the morning without being disturbed by any noise or having to get up and take the mower to the docking station. The recharging occurs automatically after the appliance operates for about 65 minutes. The charge time is around 50 minutes, an admirable number that is up to par with industry leaders.
Flymo also mows in an irregular pattern without any need to program it. This is done so that no areas are missed, which might happen with machines that strictly patrol the perimeter in straight lines. Plus, this model mulches on the way, utilising clippings to provide nutrients for new plants.
WORX WR130E S300
A High-Performing Budget Robo-Trimmer
Even though most robotic lawn trimmers are quite sophisticated they often lack that customizable touch to them that would allow the user to adjust the mowing process according to their needs.
In case you already have one of the power tools from WORX you will be pleasantly surprised to know that this lawn mower is backwards compatible with any 20V battery from the company’s line of cordless tools.
As for the charging of the unit’s base battery, the device comes with a small docking station. Thanks to its compact size it is barely visible when mounted on a wall, so you won’t have issues with the station sticking out too much. Once charged, the device can cut your lawn for up to 60 minutes straight, making this model’s autonomous runtime one of the best in its class. To ease the installation process the charging base is equipped with 8 nails allowing you to firmly secure it. In order for the unit to find it’s parking spot, we recommend placing the docking station in close vicinity of the lawn. This way the robot will easily find its charging spot and won’t stroll too far away.
The only thing that did bother us, though, is the initial setup process, which requires some effort since it is not an actual, ready out-of-the-box robotic lawn mower. However, once the unit is configured you won’t have any issues with it, as long as its blades are sharp.
The Best Thing That Can Happen to Your Lawn
Design features out of the way, let’s take a closer look at the specifications of this device. When it comes to actual lawn mowing, the high-quality blades of the device can accurately trim the grass from 50 to 20 mm, depending on the mode you have picked. Speaking of control functions, the unit can be controlled either via a mobile application or using simple voice commands. Alternatively, if you need to turn the unit off quickly you can do so by pressing the big red STOP button located on top of the grass cutter’s housing.
In addition to an already great package of features, the lawn mower also features 150 metres of special wire that will help you in setting the borders for the unit to operate within. The total coverage area, on the other hand, is 300 square metres, which should suffice most lawn layouts out there. Nevertheless, if you find these numbers rather unimpressive there are also two other models from WORX optionally available that can cover 700 and 1500 square metre areas, respectively.
All things considered, thanks to its superior build quality and a huge array of additional features, the WORX WR130E is, perhaps, one of the top robotic lawn mowers in the medium-price range available today.
While most automatic lawn mowers certainly are effective in keeping large lawns all neat and tidy, they are not really effective in maintaining smaller grass patches. With that in mind, if you are desperately searching for the best robot lawn mower for your small yard, the Lawnmaster L10 may be the top pick for that role.
This model from Lawnmaster is highly rated among other similar products not solely because of its attractive price tag, but for its ease of use and simple installation process. To be more specific, all you have to do in order to get the lawn mower up and running is setting the boundaries using the provided border wire and plugging in the charging base. After that is complete and the device is charged it will start cutting the grass according to the selected options.
Moving on, the device features two large wheels in the back, which allow it to cover uneven terrain quite easily. Combined with the special blade construction, the lawn mower can effectively operate on slopes with a 19.3° incline, which is definitely a plus.
Works Flawlessly in Any Weather
Specification-wise, this small grass cutter can cut pretty much anything in the selected area including rough grass. The actual blade length of the lawn mower allows cutting grass down in the range of 20-50 mm, which paired with a cutting width of 18 cm makes this nimble model quite efficient in mowing the lawn quickly and without wasting too much battery power.
Speaking of the battery capacity, the autonomous runtime of the appliance from one single charge varies from 40 to 50 minutes, depending on the terrain the lawn mower operates on. Although this would not be ideal for larger lawns, it works like a charm in areas of up to 400 square metres in size.
When it comes to build quality, the housing of the lawn mower is quite reliable, even when the device operates in different weather conditions. To be more precise, the body is IPX5-rated, which makes it completely waterproof and allows the appliance to operate even in the rain. Moreover, the whole package (including the electric motor) comes with a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty, which ensures that no matter what - your lawn will be mowed.
In the end, if you are looking for a small, yet highly effective robotic lawn mower for a medium-sized lawn, this model from Lawnmaster will be right up your alley. Easy to install, adjust, and maintain, it is by far one of the best budget-friendly automatic lawn mowers available today.
Swift RM18 28V
Designed to Impress
Designed to cover areas with sizes of up to 600 square metres, the Swift RM18 will be an excellent pick for medium-to-large lawns.
First of all, let’s take a quick glance over the traversal capabilities of the lawn mower. The device can easily travel on steep slopes with up to a 35% incline (around 20°), which enables it to mow lawns with difficult terrain without breaking a sweat. The two large wheels of the device are additionally threaded, which allows it to drive on wet and otherwise slippery surfaces with ease to match. Combined with a strong electric motor, the lawn mower conquers virtually any slope, hill, or bump and cuts the grass evenly with surprising efficiency. Paired with a cutting width of the blade that reaches 18 cm you are getting a quick model that can mow a huge area in one go before it needs to be recharged.
As for the autonomous capabilities of this robotic lawn mower, it is surely among the best options that you can find for the money. Equipped with a rechargeable battery, it can operate for up to 60 minutes before it needs to be recharged. Once the low-battery sensor is activated, the robot will find the shortest route to the charging dock and drive straight back to it. The catch is, however, the unit will take almost twice as long to recharge compared to some premium-class lawn mowers, and although it is not ideal it makes sense for a budget-friendly option.
Protection and Safety
Furthermore, this model is equipped with tilt and obstacle sensors that will stop the blades dead in their tracks if there is an object in front of it, or in instances when the device starts rolling over. Likewise, the lift sensor will prevent any accidents in case someone picks up the lawn mower. With that in mind, the appliance is additionally equipped with safety measures to prevent it from being stolen. For instance, this particular robotic model features a PIN protection system that will block the blades from spinning as a means of theft protection.
The thing that we didn’t really appreciate about this model, though, is the fact that the border wire that comes equipped with the main unit is somewhat short. While it still offers the user the ability to limit the area where the lawn mower can cut and mulch the grass, 100 metres is simply not enough to achieve the full potential of this grass cutter’s capabilities. Hence, we recommend getting additional wires from the manufacturer so you can fence off the area a bit better.
Wrapping things up, despite some minor aspects, the Swift RM18 still is a great piece of gear that is protected with a weather-resistant body, dust-proof elements and easily programmable cutting lengths that can be set anywhere in the range of 60 to 20 mm.
What Is a Robotic Lawn Mower?
A robot lawn mower is exactly what the name says. It's a battery-powered automated robot that moves around on wheels and trims grass with razor blades. Such mowers come with a docking station, used for recharging, and a special perimeter wire for setting boundaries of the area that needs to be trimmed. Some models may have a solar battery which prolongs the operation time. Many of them allow for an option to program a mowing schedule and on top of the mentioned features may offer some more extras facilitating their use.
The advantage to using a robot lawn mower is that it is completely autonomous, which means, a human intervention is not required. All you need to do is prepare the yard, define the borders, lay the wire, set the schedule of mowing, and connect a docking station to the power supply. Once that's done, the machine will mow the grass for you allowing you to concentrate on other things or tasks that need to be done. Unlike some mowers, robot lawn mowers do not collect the cut grass but shed it aside on the ground so it can serve as a natural soil fertilizer unless you decide to pick it up yourself.
On a related note, we can also offer you our pick of the best hedge trimmers for keeping the green fences well-manicured. Also, you might be interested in the smart sprinklers systems, that can be scheduled to irrigate the flower beds and the grass in your yard during the desired time of a day even when you are away.
What Features to Compare
Maximum Coverage. Some mowers are designed to effectively cut lawns of a specific size. Some of them can cover the areas of only 200 square metres, while others may patrol as much as over a square kilometre. Thus, if you choose a model with the designated area smaller, than your yard, you might require moving the docking station from one zone to another, which is not exactly convenient.
Perimeter Wire Length. Unlike some of the robot vacuum cleaners that can scan the room for possible obstacles beforehand, 'mowers rely on the perimeter wire laid along the borders of your lawn and around some obstacles that you don't want it to hit with its bumpers. While most robotic lawn mowers come equipped with a set or two of electric wiring that will help you set up the invisible perimeter for the appliance, sometimes the amount of wire provided is simply not enough. Thus, check out beforehand how much wire you will need to cover the necessary area. Alternatively, some of the more sophisticated devices can rely on GPS and other wireless protocols in order to set up boundaries for mowing your lawn. These systems usually rely on proprietary mobile applications that you can use to adjust borders that a lawn mower won’t cross. Additionally, these apps are also helpful in adjusting the cutting length, patterns, and optimal routes that will lead the robot to its charging station.
Sensors. As a rule, lawn mowers are equipped with several smart sensors that allow the robot to detect the perimeter wire or turn around when it bumps into an object that it can't push away. Another useful sensor is a rain detector because the wet grass may clog the rotating blades. Additionally, such a device with a lot of metal parts, staying on the flat lawn, may attract the lightning strike. So, when the rain sensor detects a high humidity level, it will make the robot return to the docking station. Moreover, some devices can come equipped with tilt sensors that will automatically shut the electric motor off if the lawn mower tilts too much or even rolls over. Likewise, the obstacle detector will also stop the appliance dead in its tracks if it senses any obstructions in the way of the blade, which is also a neat feature to have.
Programmable Features. A lof of the latest models can be scheduled to mow only during a specific time of a day. Some of them may have an option to set the password for controls or configure different behaviour scenarios for different situations and also change the mowing patterns. Still, in most cases, the mowers just move in a chaotic pattern by randomly choosing its direction. That way, your lawn will obtain the carpet-like look without the wheel traces on it. There are also models that feature linear and even spiralling mowing patterns.
Lawn Grass Types. Generally, most of the mowers' blades can cut down almost any lawn vegetation like grass or dandelions. Yet, some models may be an exception and struggle to cut high-maintenance types of grass with thick shoots like St Augustine Grass.
Did you know?
Your Lawn Is Bigger Than You Think
An average lawn will contain about 850 grass plants per square metre. This equals around 3000 blades of grass, all of which need nourishment and care.
Grass grows somewhere around 7 cm per month. Leave your yard alone for the summer and soon you’ll have to find your pets by sound only as the plants will be higher than them!
The average size of a lawn is around 800 square metres. More than sufficient to tire you out but not nearly large enough to stop a good automatic lawnmower.
Nearly 60 million kilograms of fertilizers and pesticides are applied to lawns worldwide every year.
A well-maintained yard with healthy grass can raise the value of your property by as much as 20%.
That grass patch in your yard? It produces three times as much oxygen as a tree, the plants are just that efficient.
The Best Way to Take Care of Your Yard
If you think that you’re the first person to hate taking care of a lawn, you might be surprised to find just how long ago this chore started. The first-ever publication on lawn care, a whole book, in fact, was published back in 1870.
Homeowners spend from 5 to 8 days per year taking care of their yards. Makes sense to speed up the process, right?
More than 22 million homeowners use professional services for yard maintenance. Unless you want to add that to your monthly expenses, the easiest alternative is to read a robotic lawn mower review like ours and find something to help you.
More than 6000 people are hospitalised every year after falling off ride-on mowers or after a regular one malfunctioned. Yet another point in favour of automatised appliances and an important reminder to take safety precautions.
A robot lawn mower, in comparison with a regular one, is 60% more efficient and much easier to use. Studies are still being done on exactly how much safer it is but even now it’s clear that regular models are more likely to cause trouble.
There are nearly 150 million lawnmowers being used worldwide, with a third of them located in the United States.
If you’re ever travelling by Merseyside, you can drop by their British Lawnmower Museum. Care to guess what’s on display?
Before we were blessed with the invention of lawn mowers, our ancestors had to cut grass using scythes or… sheep! The livestock ate enough grass to keep yards well-maintained without the need to stand out in the heat with a scythe all day long. How lucky are we to have the automatic lawn mower?
If you somehow have a passion for lawn maintenance, you could go to the USA and get a degree in that subject from Penn State University. Of course, the actual studies are more complicated than simple care for grass, but the foundation is exactly that.
Garden gnomes may be fashionable right now, but the most popular ornament is considered to be the pink flamingo with a quarter of a million sold every year. A good time to invest perhaps?
Water makes up 80% of the weight of a single blade of grass.
Around 50% of water used in British homes is used to water lawns.
Lawns absorb 6 times as much water as a whole field of wheat, on average. So taking care of your grass is essential to preserve water.
The famous AstroTurf was invented back in 1967, making life easier for the many people that wanted a patch of grass in their yard but were reluctant to spend time on maintenance. No longer did you have to spend litres of water on a small grass patch. And, of course, it changed the way football fields were designed and serviced.
Q: I’ve received my automatic lawn mower, can I start using it right away?
A: No, first you have to do a one-time but very important procedure. Using the specialised wire included with your product, define the perimeter in which the machine can operate. You can put it underground, but not too deep though. The reason why you need to do this is that it establishes a sort of electronic invisible fence which tells the appliance where it must stay. If you set it up properly, the lawnmower will work efficiently inside the bounds you’ve set and never leave them. This is a long task that can take up several hours, but you only have to do it once and it’s essential for the device to function. If you don’t set up the wire, the appliance might just ride away without proper instructions.
Q: What can I do to keep my pets and kids safe when this mower is in operation?
A: Don’t be afraid of them getting harmed, most machines of this kind are either programmed to drive around obstacles or have their own safeguards to keep curious children and animals away from the blades. And if you have a sufficiently quiet lawnmower, you can simply run it while your toddler naps. These devices do not require any precautions that regular ones wouldn’t.
Q: I’ve had my regular mower get clogged or “throw” objects such as rocks away by hitting them with blades. Is there any danger of that happening with these models?
A: Since blades on robotic lawnmowers are rather small and placed quite densely, an object would have to be rather tiny to get trapped between them. That way a clog or a stray rock flying off to hit someone is very unlikely. Just make sure to look over your appliance once in a while to make sure nothing is stuck to the blades or between them.
Q: Is there any specific reason why cutting grass with automatic lawnmowers is better than regular ones, aside from convenience and safety?
A: The cutting method utilised by these appliances is different than the one in the non-automatised models. They only shave off small pieces of grass, which leaves the lawn even and clean but not too short so that it looks unkempt. Plus, you won’t have to clean up afterwards as these small pieces can serve as a soil fertiliser.
Q: Will I have to take the lawnmower to the charging station myself?
A: Most likely, not. The majority of models have a setting that tells them to ride around the perimeter until they reach the vicinity of the docking port. Then the machine will approach it and start charging automatically. Some of the more advanced models also have an extra wire, like the one you lay around the perimeter to set the bounds. However, that additional wire is used not to restrict the appliance but to guide it straight to the charging port. You lay it from the working area all the way to the charger and the machine follows it to reach its destination.
Q: Can I use basic batteries to run this appliance?
A: No, this type of lawnmower charges at a special docking station, no need for any other accessories. Perhaps you might find one that takes batteries but it’s prudent to use a standard model that utilises a charging station.
1. Lawn mowers & tractors, Consumer Reports. September 2016.
2. Robotic lawn mower, Wikipedia. November 2016.
3. Types of Lawnmowers, eXtension. September 22, 2015.
4. How to Maintain a Healthy, Weed-Free Lawn, DIY network.
5. How to Get and Maintain a Healthy Lawn, wikiHow. February 2017.
6. Glenn Derene The Robots Are Coming (To Mow Your Lawn), Popular Mechanics. July 29, 2013.
7. Sal Vaglica Does a Robotic Lawn Mower Really Cut It? The Wall Street Journal. April 12, 2016.