How Long Do Riding Mowers Last? Hours & Lifespan Insight

How Long Do Riding Mowers Last

Riding mowers come in different designs and specifications, making them widely used and efficient for all forms of landscaping today.

When purchasing one, you might look for specific criteria, such as lifespan. However, as the saying goes, nothing lasts forever; this also applies to lawnmowers, no matter how durable.

Do you want to know how long riding mowers last or how long you should use them before buying a new mower?

This article answers these and all related questions, including extra care tips you did not know your mower needed.

So, how long do riding mowers last? Let’s find out!

How Long Do Riding Mowers Last

Riding mowers can last for about six to ten years on average, but they can perform well for up to fifteen years with proper care and maintenance. Generally, a riding mower’s lifespan depends on certain factors, like how often it is used, the terrain it is used on, and how its parts are maintained.

Interesting Read: Budget Mowers Under $2000!

Factors Affecting the Average Life of a Riding Lawn Mower

Several factors could either extend or shorten the average lifespan of a riding lawnmower.

You might not know some of these factors, but in a way, they contribute to how long your mower will function optimally. They are explained below:

1. Frequency of use

How often you use your lawn mower goes a long way in determining how long it will last.

You will not expect a mower that has been used for long hours to have the same lifespan as that that has only been used a few times.

This is why it is advised to allow time to pass after a mowing session to reduce the times it is done yearly.

2. Type of terrain

If you make use of your mower on terrains that are bumpy or hilly often, you can expect it will have a shorter lifespan in the end.

This is because these terrains put a lot of stress on the machine, which could wear out its parts.

On the other hand, if you work on flat terrains more, you can be sure your mower will have a smoother run and even last longer.

If you have to deal with hills and bumps, you should ride slowly and avoid making sharp turns.

best zero turn mower for hills

3. Size of lawn

How big the lawn a riding mower is used on also affects how long it will last. You do not want to use a mower with low capacity on a vast lawn that would take a while to mow through.

The size and kind of lawn also determine the type of mower you should use.

For instance, you will not want to use light-duty riding mowers on lawns located on rough terrains that would take long hours to cut.

If the lawn also has thick and long grass with many twigs, this could shorten the mower’s lifespan.

4. Maintenance Frequency

Just as you need to care for things you want to last, mowers also require upkeep.

You can expect that a mower that is maintained regularly and taken for repairs when needed will last longer than that which a routine of maintenance is not done on.

It could be challenging to maintain a routine significantly if the mower does not develop a major mechanical fault.

But basic checks and repairs go a long way in extending the lifespan of this machine.

5. Mechanical faults

When you do not carry out regular checks on a mower, it could lead to mechanical faults that affect the machine’s overall performance.

These faults could range from clogged air filters and bent mower blades to faulty spark plugs, which could affect the engine and result in a breakdown.

A mower that has broken down several times would have a shorter lifespan than one that has never had a major fault.

6. Quality of material used by manufacturers

At times, what determines your mower’s lifespan might depend on the brand that designed the riding mower you are using.

If the manufacturers or designers of a mower brand use durable and strong materials, you can be sure it will last a while longer.

You can tell a very sturdy mower with good build quality by the design of its blades, reels, and bearings. This is why the manufacturer’s warranty offers some months of use after purchase.

7. Storage conditions

Lastly, where you keep your mower could also affect its lifespan. As with most machines, storing your mower in a garage or covered shed that is cool and dry is advised.

Leaving it exposed to the sun and other weather elements over an extended period could begin to affect the mower deck’s plastic, rubber, and metallic components.  

Maintenance Tips for Riding Mowers – How to Extend the Lifespan of Riding Lawn Mowers

Now you know a regular maintenance routine can prolong the lifespan of your riding mower, here are some tips that you can follow to have a well-maintained mower:

1. Use quality fuel

One major thing you can do to extend how long your riding mower will last is to fuel it using only high-quality fuel.

Filling the fuel tank with low-quality gas like ethanol-infused kinds can destroy the rubber and plastic parts of the mower over time. If you are unsure if it is of good quality, you can use a gas stabilizer.

2. Change oil when appropriate

Using a mower with a low oil level affects its functionality over time. This is why it needs to be checked before every use so you can fill it up to the expected level.

Also, running on old oil can be damaging, hence the need to replace it when due for a change. This is one care tip that would undoubtedly extend your mower’s life.

3. Regular tire checks

You should check the air pressure in your mower’s tires every few weeks. Using it to mow on deflated tires can affect other machine parts.

Hence, ensure all tires are inflated evenly to the proper level as often as possible. Note that the recommended PSI for lawn mower tires differs from one mower to another, so you can check the manual to know what yours is. 

4. Check the drive belts and pulleys

The belts are subject to wear and tear over time, so they must be checked so you can replace them as soon as necessary.

Also, you should pay attention to any sign of fraying, cracking, or a clicking sound, as they could affect the pulleys.

5. Keep blades sharp

Cutting using blunt blades strains the mower asides making you work slower. So there is a need to keep riding lawn mower blades as sharp as possible always.

You can use a bench grinder, a clamp, a blade sharpening stone, or a file to get a sharp mower blade.

It is advised to do this after every 30-40 hours of cutting sessions. This is another maintenance tip you want to take seriously.

Proper Angle to Sharpen Lawn Mower Blades
Keeping blades sharp

6. Do full engine tune-up

A tune-up should be done once a year to ensure the mower cuts smoothly. This does not require any technical skills or the use of special tools.

A simple tune-up kit can be built using tools like a wire brush, WD40, flat file, and oil filter tool.

These will help clean up the parts responsible for ignition, the air and fuel systems, and lubrication is also done.

7. Servicing other parts regularly

Other parts, such as the battery, spark plug, air filters, and carburetor, should also be checked and serviced regularly so that you can do the following:

  • Remove the batteries during winter and check the water level after every ten hours of use. 
  • Replace the spark plug when it gets bad as soon as possible, as it can damage the cylinders. 
  • The air filter of a typical riding mower should be cleaned and replaced whenever the oil is changed. 
  • The gas in the carburetor should also be checked and replaced regularly.

How Long Do Riding Mowers’ Parts Last?

Each part of a mower also has a lifespan which dictates how long it can function well before it is replaced. Some of these lawn mower parts are:


A mower engine’s life can last as long as the machine functions. It is the most durable part that, in most cases, develops the most severe faults.

It can last for several years if it is not run on low engine oil and regular tune-ups are done.


Lead-acid batteries can last up to 4 years. It is one of the less expensive parts of the mower that can be changed or charged when dead.

It powers the machine, so it needs to be functioning and checked as often as possible.


This lasts about five years as long as it is not exposed to harsh weather conditions. Rust is usually the leading cause of this part malfunctioning and not lasting as long as it should.


Most riding mowers have blades that can last for several years as long as they are kept sharp.

They are significant parts as blunt blades, even with a good engine, will not let the mower function.

The lawn mower blade should be kept in good condition no matter how often they are used.

So, how often should you change lawn mower blades? Find out!

Riding Mowers Lifespan for Different Brands

Riding Mower BrandAverage Life Expectancy
Craftsman10-15 years
John Deere15+ years
Cub Cadet10-15 years
Husqvarna8-12 years
Troy-Bilt8-12 years
Snapper8-12 years
Murray6-10 years
Poulan Pro6-10 years
Ariens10-15 years
Toro10-15 years

How many hours should a cub cadet lawn tractor last

A cub cadet lawn tractor lasts for about 500 to 1000 hours. It can work longer with a good maintenance routine and care for its various parts.

Its parts are known to have specific problems, but if maintained properly, it would last for more years.

How long do john deere riding mowers last

The average life of a john deere lawn tractor varies according to their sizes. Smaller ones last about 500 to 1000 hours, while bigger ones range between 1500 and 2000 hours.

When taken good care of, they could last for more than 15 years.

John Deere L130 life expectancy

John Deere L130’s life expectancy is not definite as it comes with some complexities in its operation. You must learn to deal with such John Deere L130 Problems to mow your lawn effectively.

Its good engine design is very durable, which makes it have an average of 8 to 10 years, which amounts to 4500-5000 hours of riding. 

John Deere D130 life expectancy

John Deere D130 has an average life expectancy of about two years which amounts to approximately 120 hours of riding.

How many hours does a Husqvarna riding mower last

Husqvarna riding mowers are designed for small yards of lawns had reduced workload. Hence, they last for about 400 to 800 hours of operation.

They are suitable for light mowing around the home and are not good for commercial purposes.

Recommended: Husqvarna lawn mower reviews

How many hours will a Briggs and Stratton engine last?

Briggs and Stratton is a manufacturing company that produces small-sized riding lawnmowers for an average workload.

Its engine can last as long as 500 hours and, with good use and maintenance, 1000 hours or more.

How long do craftsman riding mowers last?

The lifespan of Craftsman riding mowers is influenced by various factors including usage, maintenance, and operating conditions. On average, when owners provide regular maintenance and proper care, a Craftsman riding mower can endure for approximately 10 to 15 years or potentially longer. However, it is essential to recognize that individual experiences may differ.


How many hours on a riding lawn mower is a lot?

Riding lawnmowers are designed to last several years. Hence, a mower with a lifespan of about ten years which is 500 to 1000 riding hours, has done a lot of work. This could extend for up to 20 years with good maintenance and care.

How many hours does a lawn mower engine last?

A lawn mower engine can last about 8 to 10 years, depending on the size, which amounts to 750 to 1000 hours. Smaller engines might last time; they usually average about 300 to 500 hours.

Is 600 hours a lot for a mower?

Yes, it is. The high mileage for a mower with a single cylinder is about 500 to 750 hours. So, 600 hours is a lot for a mower, but more is needed to wear it out as long as it is properly maintained.

Is 300 hours a lot for a riding mower?

Three hundred hours is not a lot for a riding mower. A typical lawn mower is built to last up to 1000 hours. Unless you are working with small mowers with smaller engines, this can be at the mileage border, and you must take extra care while using it so as not to wear it out.

How long do lawn tractors last?

Lawn tractors can last as long as 10,000 hours, up to 15 years. They differ from riding mowers based on the position of their cutting decks. If basic repairs and servicing are done after each operating season, they can last even longer.

How many hours should a commercial mower last?

Due to how heavy the workload of a commercial mower is, it lasts about 50 hours. But extra care and proper maintenance can last up to 100 hours. You must take extra care not to wear this mower out, especially on rough lawns and terrains.

How many hours does a zero turn last?

On average, a zero turn lasts about 1500 to 2000 hours, about three to four years. It works with a commercial-grade engine which could extend to about 3,500 hours if oil is changed after every 50 hours of use. 

Is 500 hours a lot for a riding mower?

Yes, 500 hours is considered a significant amount of usage for a riding mower. As with any machinery, the lifespan of a riding mower depends on various factors such as maintenance, quality, and operating conditions. Regular maintenance can help extend the lifespan, but 500 hours is a substantial time for a riding mower.

Is 1200 hours a lot for a mower?

Yes, 1200 hours is generally considered a significant usage for a mower. The lifespan of a mower can vary depending on factors such as maintenance, quality, and operating conditions. Many mowers can last between 1000 to 1500 hours with proper care and maintenance. However, individual experiences may vary, and some mowers may last even longer with appropriate upkeep.

Is 1500 hours a lot for a mower?

Well, let’s just say that mower has been working harder than a bee in a flower shop! With proper care and maintenance, it’s definitely clocked in some serious mowing time. Just make sure to give it a well-deserved break and a pat on the handle – it’s earned it

What do you do with an old lawn mower? Here’s a guide on how to get rid of a lawn mower.

So, How Long Do Riding Mowers Last?

A riding mower is undoubtedly a good investment that could last more than a decade if well taken care of.

Irrespective of the model you buy, proper cleaning, regular checks, and routine maintenance will add a few extra years to your mower’s lifespan.

This machine will help you cut back on some hours of fieldwork, so do not hesitate to purchase one, and if you already own one, take good care of it, and you will get your money’s worth for years.