How Long Do Manual Lawn Mowers Last?

Manual mowers are a tempting purchase if your budget is tight or you just don’t want to splash out hundreds of pounds on a lawn mower.


But does the low upfront cost of manual mowers reflect their design quality? How many years can you expect a manual mower to last? And is there anything you can do to extend the lifespan of this mower type?


We’ve shared the answers to these questions and more in this guide.

✅Key Takeaways:

  • On average, a manual reel mower lasts 10-20 years.

  • Factors affecting a manual mower’s lifespan include its material quality, your mowing habits, and your commitment to mower maintenance/care.

  • You can enjoy your manual mower for longer by properly using, storing, cleaning, and performing maintenance on the mower as recommended by the manufacturer.

Table of Contents

🤷‍♂️ What’s The Life Expectancy Of A Manual Lawn Mower?

The average life expectancy of a manual lawn mower is 10-20 years with proper maintenance and care.


Manual mowers have fewer moving parts compared to petrol, battery-powered, and electric mowers, which is an advantage when it comes to their lifespan – they’ll usually last longer because there are fewer components that could break.


The exact lifespan of a particular manual mower depends on its build quality, as well as factors including how often you use the mower, and on what terrain. We’ve discussed these factors in more detail later.


On a personal note, we’ve owned a few manual reel mowers over the years, and we currently own the Einhell GC-HM 300 Hand Push Lawnmower, which we’ve had for nearly two years now, with no visible signs of wear and tear. We’ll update this review in another year or two with how the mower continues to hold up with regular use.

📰 What’s The Warranty For A Manual Push Mower?

The average warranty length for a manual lawn mower is 1-5 years, depending on the mower’s upfront cost. From our research, we’ve found that most manual reel mowers have a 2-year warranty.


Some manual mowers don’t have a warranty, although they may have an initial returns period. Sometimes you have to register the mower with the manufacturer to be eligible for the warranty or to enjoy a longer warranty period. Make sure to check warranty information before you purchase the mower.

grass, comb, lawn, mower,

📑 What Factors Affect A Manual Mower’s Lifespan?

Here are some of the factors that affect how long a manual lawn mower will last:

🛠 Build Quality

First, the build quality of a manual reel mower determines its lifespan.


A mower that’s made from sturdy, durable materials, such as steel, should last longer than a mower made from flimsier materials, like plastic.


It’s normal for manual mowers to have a few plastic parts, but our advice is to look for a mower with a metal handle and metal parts connecting the wheels to the base, since these need to be strong enough to withstand the most impact.

🗓 Mowing Frequency & Capacity

Your mowing frequency and capacity will also affect how long your manual push lawn mower lasts.


The more often you mow your lawn, the faster the mower will succumb to the inevitable effects of wear and tear.


Equally, if you use your mower on a larger lawn, you’ll use it for longer periods than if you use it on a small lawn, which will also cause it to wear out faster.

manual, lawn, mower, grass, collector, box,

🏔 Terrain

A manual mower’s lifespan may also be affected by the mowing terrain.


Mowing thick, long grass will put the blades under more pressure than mowing relatively short grass. Additionally, mowing over bumpy terrain will cause the mower to judder and shake more than if you’re mowing flat ground, causing parts to become loose and worn.


The poorer the terrain quality, the faster the mower is likely to wear out, and the shorter its lifespan.

💚 User Care

Finally, your own care and maintenance behaviours may also play a part in how long your manual reel mower lasts.


If you follow the maintenance recommendations in your user manual, including, blade sharpening, cleaning the mower after every use, and storing the mower away from the elements, it should last a long time.


On the other end, if you don’t care for and maintain the mower as advised by the manufacturer, it may become worn, corroded, and incapable of properly cutting grass within a matter of years.

⏰ Do Manual Mowers Last As Long As Other Mower Types?

Yes, manual push mowers last as long as other mower types, like electric mower models and petrol-powered mowers.


In fact, push reel mowers sometimes last longer than powered mowers because there are fewer moving parts, so the mower has less potential for breakdowns.


A manual push mower is, as the name suggests, person-powered. That means you don’t have to worry about an electrical fault or an expensive problem with the mower’s petrol engine, because it doesn’t use any of these components to run.


With that said, a manual reel mower has a cylinder blade, which is more complex than a rotary blade, and sharpening this blade type is more difficult. You’ll need to be prepared for the extra commitment of sharpening a manual mower blade before you spend your money, since a dull blade affects the mower’s grass cutting ability.


While manual mowers can last up to 20 years with the right care, most powered rotary mowers last 5-10 years on average.

📅 How To Extend Your Manual Lawn Mower’s Lifespan

Now we know how long manual mowers usually last, let’s look at some of the things you can do to possibly extend your mower’s lifespan.


💰 Invest A Bit More Upfront

First, if you haven’t already bought a manual lawn mower, consider investing a bit more money upfront on a model with a quality build.


Push reel mowers cost as little as £40. You can get a great deal on a manual mower, but generally, making a slightly bigger investment – around £80-£120 – will reward you with a better-quality mower.


You can check customer reviews to get an understanding of how long a manual mower should last and how the mower’s quality lives up to customer expectations (or not!).


🧰 Clean The Mower & Perform Regular Maintenance

Like any lawn mower, a hand push mower needs some basic regular maintenance tasks to keep it in the best working condition.


Manual mower maintenance involves:

  • Sharpening the mower blades

  • Removing debris, dirt, and grass clippings from the mower wheels, grass box, blades, and undercarriage after every mow

  • Lubricating the wheels and blades (if recommended by the manufacturer)

  • Tightening nuts, bolts, and screws that have come loose during mowing


Get into the habit of cleaning and inspecting your mower after every use, and sharpen the blades whenever necessary – ideally every 25 hours of mower use. This should keep it in the best condition and prevent issues from arising that could shorten its lifespan.


🏠 Use And Store The Mower Correctly

Also make sure to use and store the mower as advised by the manufacturer.


Here are some of our key dos and don’ts for using and storing manual mowers:


  • Store the mower in a dry, indoor location, like a shed or a garage

  • Mow your lawn regularly, and avoid mowing longer grass

  • Follow any specific manufacturer’s instructions for using the mower


  • Mow very overgrown grass – this will put extra strain on the blades

  • Mow wet grass – the water will damage and possibly corrode the mower’s metal parts

  • Leave the mower outside between uses

If you have any doubts about how to use your push reel mower, check your user manual or contact the manufacturer with your questions.

🏁 Final Word

If you were under the impression that manual reel mowers don’t last a long time because of their lower upfront cost, good news: they often last longer than electric or petrol-powered push mowers.


Remember, any mower’s lifespan is influenced by your own mowing habits and maintenance commitments, so make sure to follow the manufacturer’s care recommendations carefully to get the most out of your investment.