Zero turn vs hst tractor reliability

RalphVa

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Charlottesville, VA, USA
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JD 2025R, previously Gravely 5650 & JD 4010 & JD 1025R
Of coarse a 60” ZT traveling twice as fast is going to take more power than the old lawn tractor.
No a lawn tractor would need 3 to 5 swipes around a tree. Whereas, a ZT just goes Ziiiip right around the tree. Less energy, particularly if on Ryobi, EGo or Cub Cadet battery one.
 

jjp8182

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Aug 2, 2018
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Northern Alabama
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Kubota L3560
Depends on the quality of the zero-turn. In my experience, a big box store mower (of any type) hasn't generally hasn't lasted more than 1 year per $1000 spent (went through multiple before buying my L3560). Which has pretty much given me the impression that air-cooled engines just don't like being run long & hard in hot Alabama summers.

Could I have fixed them and gotten longer use? yeah probably, but at that price I'd rather not be rebuilding the engine (or chasing down other problems) every few years -- especially when the grass isn't getting mowed because the mower needs repairs (again).

Granted a commercial zero-turn will likely last longer per $1k spent, but the bottom price will very likely be higher -- and it still won't have a loader.

BTW a loader can be very handy for helping cleaning up from storm damage or large/heavy pruning sessions (particularly when paired with a grapple) - and that's both in moving the trimming/debris and in reducing the amount of saw work required.

So given I'm also pretty sure there are members here still operating models of HST tractors that haven't been made in almost 20 years (or more) I would be (and was) more inclined to go with a HST compact tractor.

Far more utility for the money going that route IMO.....but that's just my $0.02
 

arto98607

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S.W. Washington State
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Kubota F3060, Grasshopper 721D, Ford 1310, John Deere 440 ICD, John Deere 300
Depends on the quality of the zero-turn. In my experience, a big box store mower (of any type) hasn't generally hasn't lasted more than 1 year per $1000 spent (went through multiple before buying my L3560). Which has pretty much given me the impression that air-cooled engines just don't like being run long & hard in hot Alabama summers.

Could I have fixed them and gotten longer use? yeah probably, but at that price I'd rather not be rebuilding the engine (or chasing down other problems) every few years -- especially when the grass isn't getting mowed because the mower needs repairs (again).

Granted a commercial zero-turn will likely last longer per $1k spent, but the bottom price will very likely be higher -- and it still won't have a loader.

................snip.............



I bought a used model year 1993 Grasshopper 721D Diesel commercial with 61" RD mower back in 2003 for three grand and spent close to one grand on parts to refurbish (none for the Diesel engine so far).

About the only maintenance the previous owner (commercial lawncare) had done was engine oil change, which explains the need for refurbishing.




For me the cost of buying & refurbishing this mower works out to $222 per year so far, since the labor refurbishing it was free (a hobby).
Other than regular maintenance, repairs over the last 18 years have been pretty minimal: one new driveshaft, PTO clutch, two spindle bearings and two sets of gauge wheels.





The mower works & looks about the same now with 1800 hours on the clock:

1993 Grasshopper 721D.JPG


P1010107.JPG
 
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dodge man

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West central Illinois
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JD 2025R
While I don’t know a lot about zero turns I do mow with my tractor. My son mowed for a guy a couple of years that had about a 100 rentals. He didn’t like mowing with my tractor but he was used to using a commercial grade mower.

Like already mentioned a ZT only mows although it can be used for other stuff, they make brooms, blades etc for some of them. It’s also easy to spend 20k for one if you get an all wheel drive front mount mower, diesel.

From the stand point of durability, I don’t feel like I am wearing out my tractor mowing with it, I got it to use. I’d say get the right tool for the job that will serve you best.
 
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timswi

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Nov 18, 2008
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Beaver County Pa
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Kubota BX23 TLB, Kubota RTV1100, Kubota Z724 & Polaris Sportsman 570 Touring
I have had a ZD724 since around 2015. It's been trouble free and cut my mowing time by well over half compared to my BX23. It's thirsty but scary fast. No regrets on the purchase. My lawn isn't a golf course but it's fairly comfortable unless you slam a good sized hole.
 

oldnslo

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Northern, IL
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Branson 2400H, JD X540
mowing 10 acres with ZT I would get very, very tired of pushing on the controls with both arms but that may be just me. I have operated skid steers for a few hours and my arms and shoulders where sore.
 

MoKelly

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Jefferson County, Mo, ... about 35 miles out of St
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I would think versatility would be more important for farm/ranch... ZT would be great for golf course...

Golf courses have both ZTR’s and tractors.

ZTR’s mow and tractors move mulch and stone and dirt - then level the gravel parking areas.

We use what is best and fastest for the task. Time is valuable.

MoKelly
 

metalbender

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Sask, Canada
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Massey 1742
On the reliability side, last year I upgraded from a forty year old Deines ZT to a Toro Titan 60 inch with MyRide. Love the ride, hope it lasts somewhere near as long. Toro has been building mowers for a long time.
 

RalphVa

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The battery powered ones just have a motor for each wheel and one for each rotor. No belts. Apparently have parking brakes but probably not for steering, as separate motors would do that.
 
 
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