What is the Best Riding Lawn Mower for 2 Acres? (2024)

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A riding mower is a step up from a powered push mower since they let you simply sit and navigate a huge yard. Without proper research, you can end up with expensive and inefficient models that can break in the middle of a job.

This is why I’ve personally tested the best riding lawn mowers for 2 acres, durable enough to maintain the whole lawn.

Premium Option
John Deere Z355E
Editor’s Choice
RYOBI 48V 42”
Budget Option
Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro
John Deere Z355E
RYOBI 48V 42”
Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro
• 22 HP engine
• 48” cutting width
• 2.1-gallon tank
• Up to 4 acres
• 100 Ah batteries
• Up to 3 acres
• Twin steel blades
• 1.5-4.5” cutting height
• 24 HP engine
• 50” cutting width
• Up to 2 acres
• 3-gallon tank
Premium Option
John Deere Z355E
John Deere Z355E
• 22 HP engine
• 48” cutting width
• 2.1-gallon tank
• Up to 4 acres
Editor’s Choice
RYOBI 48V 42”
RYOBI 48V 42”
• 100 Ah batteries
• Up to 3 acres
• Twin steel blades
• 1.5-4.5” cutting height
Budget Option
Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro
Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro
• 24 HP engine
• 50” cutting width
• Up to 2 acres
• 3-gallon tank

Reviews of the Top Riding Mowers for 2 Acres

1. RYOBI 42 in. 100 Ah Battery Electric Riding Zero Turn Mower

This Ryobi 42-inch 100 Ah Batter Electric Riding Lawn Mower is a great option for those who value cleanliness and peace while working in their yard. I’ve found it capable of handling up to 3 acres on a single charge, thanks to its efficient brushless motors and a 42-inch deck.

Its sophisticated control panel informs you of the battery life left before the tool is recharged. A charging port is also located in the back for easy access in case of low battery.

From the same interface, you may use the blades, the slow-speed mode, and the LED lamps for low-visibility cutting situations. And from a maintenance perspective, the absence of spark plugs and filters is a welcome change, making clean-up a bit easier.

What I Like

What I Don't Like

2. John Deere Z355E ZTrak 48-in 22-HP

John Deere Z355E

While it’s true that battery-powered lawn mowers have many advantages, in practice, it’s often quicker to fill up a gas tank than to recharge multiple batteries.

This John Deere Z355E gas-powered mower has a 22-horsepower twin-cylinder engine that gets the job done quickly. Additionally, the zero-turn riding mower features a 48-inch cutting deck that may be easily adjusted using the two lap bars.

And let’s talk comfort; this mower nails it. From a well-cushioned yellow seat to a handy cupholder and even spring suspensions, it makes all the difference during a day of mowing. Armrests and storage compartments are also right there when you need them.

What I Like

What I Don't Like

3. Troy-Bilt Pony 42 in. 15.5 HP

Troy-Bilt Pony 42X Riding Lawn Mower with 42-Inch Deck and 547cc Engine Tractor

The cost of the Troy-Bilt Pony is lower than most riding lawn mowers. Despite this, it has surprisingly good efficiency and performance, making it another great candidate for the best riding lawn mower for 2 acres.

I’ve found the 15.5 HP 500cc OHV Briggs & Stratton engine to be reliable, delivering precise cuts every time. And with an 18-inch turn radius, navigating around obstacles like lawn decor and trees becomes much easier.

If you have uneven terrain, you’ll appreciate the convenience of the 7-speed Shift-on-the-Go transmission, the pneumatic tires, and a manual gear system that puts you in control of the mower.

What I Like

What I Don't Like

4. EGO POWER+ 42-in 22-HP

It can be inconvenient to refill the mower if it runs out of gasoline in the middle of a task, and gas riding lawn mowers are notoriously loud. However, these problems are addressed by the electric Ego Power+ 42-Inch 22-HP Riding Mower and its silent operation along with the use of rechargeable batteries for energy. 

I appreciate the charging setup as well. The mower comes with four batteries and a charger that can handle up to six batteries simultaneously. It’s a small thing, but it makes a big difference in convenience.

Despite its emission-free functioning, the engine provides an output equal to a 22-horsepower gas engine. The 42-inch cutting deck is ample for most yards, and the LED headlights are a nice touch for mowing in lower light conditions.

What I Like

What I Don't Like

5. Husqvarna Z242F 42 in. 18 HP

Even though a new riding mower is usually thousands of dollars, the Husqvarna Z242F is more affordable than the best riding mowers on the market.

It’s not as pricey as some other top-tier models, yet it offers features like an 18-HP engine and a zero-turn design, which are great for lawns 2 acres or larger. The 42-inch, 10-gauge steel cutting deck is another feature I value. It’s robust and capable, adding to the mower’s overall efficiency.

The hydrostatic transmission on this Husqvarna mower is smooth and user-friendly, and it also features a park brake that Husqvarna has patented. And once you’ve filled the 3.5-gallon gas tank, the cushioned driver’s seat makes for a comfortable mowing experience.

What I Like

What I Don't Like

6. Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro Series LT

If you’re on a tight budget, consider purchasing the Cub Cadet XT1. The mower is affordable, but it has a lot of smarts. IntelliPower technology is built in and constantly analyzes the engine speed and external circumstances to maximize power production.

In tough mowing conditions, like wet or heavy grass, it can even kick in an extra 20% power by adjusting the throttle.

Under the hood, the mower is powered by a 547cc gas engine. No need to fuss about with gear shifts, thanks to the hydrostatic gearbox. It’s as simple as stepping on the gas to get going. In my experience, that kind of simplicity makes for a more straightforward and enjoyable mowing session.

Read Next: In-Depth Review of the Cub Cadet XT1

What I Like

What I Don't Like

7. Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1 50 in.

Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1 Riding Mower

More deck space is always ideal for those with a sizable lawn to maintain. The gently rolling hills and various obstacles are perfect for the Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1’s 50-inch wide, 11-gauge triple-blade manufactured Aeroforce deck. It handles varied terrain well, and its stronger leading edges mean you end up with a lawn that looks more uniform, less clumpy.

The dual hydrostatic transmission is another feature worth noting; it allows for a forward speed of up to 7.5 mph and a reverse speed of 3.5 mph. That’s plenty quick for getting the job done efficiently.

Another big plus for me is the 726cc Kawasaki engine that powers this Cub Cadet zero-turn mower. It generates a substantial 23 horsepower, offering a level of performance that’s close to what you’d expect from commercial-grade equipment.

(Must-Read: Kawasaki vs Kohler Comparison: Which is Better?)

What I Like

What I Don't Like

What is a Riding Lawn Mower?

Riding lawn mowers, often known as lawn tractors or ride-on mowers, have a larger and heavier mowing deck than traditional push mowers, like the Ryobi P1108BTL model.

The “rider” operates the equipment while seated on the provided seat. Riding lawnmowers function similarly to vehicles in many ways and have a design reminiscent of tiny tractors.

They have four wheels that speed up when the driver presses a pedal or uses the steering wheel or levers.

Electric mowers, which run on rechargeable batteries and are quieter than gas-riding mowers, are available in abundance and eliminate the need for constant gas replenishment.

Regarding practicality, riding lawnmowers is the first and only choice for farmers and landowners with lawns greater than an acre (or multiple acres). Riding mowers are far more efficient when cutting large, open grass areas than traditional push mowers.

Riding Mowers for 2 Acres Buyer’s Guide

Mower Type

Zero-Turn Mower

For yards that are two acres or more in size, a zero-turn mower is the best option because of its improved mobility and zero-degree turn radius in comparison to rear-engine riding mowers. Yes, they’re typically pricier, but in return, you get speed and efficiency that can really cut down on your mowing time. I’ve used one on larger properties and the level of control you get is something else entirely.

Rear-Engine Riding Lawn Mower

This style of riding mower gets its name because the engine sits behind the driver’s seat. These mowers are considerably more compact than lawn tractors, and their cutting decks are typically only 30 inches wide. With less mass and energy requirements, the price tag drops, too.

Lawn Tractor

A lawn tractor’s simple controls—a wheel and pedals—make it easy for even inexperienced drivers to get the hang of things quickly.

mowing with John Deere Z355E

Most come with hydrostatic transmissions, making speed transitions pretty smooth. The only catch is they don’t corner as well as zero-turn mowers. So if you’ve got a lot of turns and tight spots in your two acres, you might find them a bit less agile. But for straightforward, wide-open mowing, they’re a reliable choice.

Also Read: Recommended Finish Mowers for Tractors 

Engine Power

When it comes to engines, you’ve basically got two paths: traditional gas engines or the newer, battery-powered kind. I’ve tried both, and each has its pros and cons.

The revolutionary construction of the lawn mower’s batteries greatly decreases noise and exhaust pollutants, but a big drawback is that the batteries require a recharge. 

In contrast to gas mowers, which can be restarted by adding fuel, electric riding mowers’ batteries typically need to be recharged for many hours before you can use them again.

It would be easier to plug the batteries into a charger if there was a gas can sitting around, but if there weren’t, it would be necessary to go somewhere to get gas. 

Both engine types have advantages and disadvantages, so picking one is really a question of taste. Make sure the motor is adequate for the task at hand.

Here’s something to keep in mind: For a 2-acre lawn, you don’t need to go overboard with the horsepower. A range of 17 to 29 horsepower is pretty ideal. Anything more than that might be overkill unless you’re running some heavy-duty attachments.

Battery or Fuel Capacity

When you’re almost done with a task, nothing is more aggravating than having the riding mower quit because it needs gas or new batteries. 

When choosing the best riding lawn mower for 2 acres, research the battery capacity or fuel of the mower before deciding on a riding mower. Most electric riding mowers have a run time of between 1 and 2 hours on a single charge. 

However, it may be impractical for owners to mow their whole yards if the batteries take hours to charge after use fully.

(Speaking of batteries, learn more about the voltage of a lawn mower battery here.)

Typically, gas-powered riding lawn mowers with a capacity for 2 acres of grass can hold anywhere from 2 to 5 gallons of fuel. You can keep a small gas on hand if the lawn mower runs out of gas amid a task.

Also Read: Best Diesel Zero-Turn Mowers

Amp Hours Duration

A battery’s amp hour rating is the amount of time it will take to completely lose its charge if a device is continuously drawing that many amps from the battery. The battery will drain after being used for an hour and must be recharged.

If you go for a battery with a higher Ah rating, you’ll spend less time waiting for a recharge and more time actually mowing [1]. Just something to consider when you’re making your choice.

Lawn Size, Slopes, and Terrains

Navigating different lawn sizes and terrains comes down to the right tools for the job. For 2- to 4-acre lawns, a mower with a cutting deck width of 42 to 54 inches should do the trick. If you’re dealing with 4 to 6 acres, you might want to consider stepping up to a 54- to 62-inch deck for efficiency. If your property is above six acres in size, a 60-inch deck is a way to go.

Smaller deck sizes, from 30 inches and up, are available on mowers, but they’re only suitable for one acre or fewer lawns. As someone who has maneuvered through various types of lawns, I’ve found that a 42-inch deck is generally a sweet spot for most properties, offering a good balance of coverage and maneuverability.

Now, about those slopes. If your lawn has steep inclines, be cautious with a zero-turn mower. Those front caster wheels can make steering pretty tricky on hills, basically leaving you with limited control. It’s a known issue, and trust me, you don’t want to learn this the hard way.

Deck Size and Cutting Depth

Because you can chop more grass in a single pass with a larger deck, a riding mower’s cutting speed and efficiency are directly proportional to its deck size.

Steel is commonly used to make cutting decks, albeit the thickness varies by brand and model. Steel with a thicker gauge is more resistant to wear and tear, making it a suitable option for yards with many rocks that could kick onto the deck.

As a rule of thumb, the width of a cutting deck is between 30 and 50 inches. But lawn mowers with a deck of at least 42 inches in width are suggested for efficient maintenance of 2 acres. To cover a bigger area, you should get a mower with a deck that is wider than 50 inches.

Speed and Performance

You must look for the best riding lawn mowers that can get the job done quickly. The typical top speed of a ride-on mower is between 4 and 16 miles per hour.

If you’re aiming to finish your 2-acre lawn in around 45 minutes to an hour and a half, you’ll want something that can go faster than 6 miles per hour.

Maneuverability and Braking

A riding lawn mower, like a car, has brakes to slow the vehicle down for a turn or a stop. Both vehicles have pedals, but those with a steering wheel use the wheel as a brake.

Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1 50

Regarding maneuverability, larger ones are less likely to get stuck on uneven ground. You should also ensure your tires have deep treads for the off-roading you’ll be doing.


Hydrostatic Transmission

Hydrostatic transmissions are similar to automatics, except they use hydraulic fluid instead of belts to transfer power. It’s easy to use, doesn’t get scratched up easily, lasts a long time, and needs very little upkeep. The only controls you need to operate are forward and reverse.

Automatic Transmission

Like gear-driven transmissions use a series of toothed wheels, automatic transmissions use a similar arrangement of gears. However, just like an automated car, an automatic riding lawn mower will change gears without input from the operator.

Gear-driven Transmission

To change from low to high RPM, a gear-driven transmission will use a series of toothed wheels with varying gear sizes or ratios (rpm).

Each gear, including the reverse, must be selected by the operator by hand. This is the simplest setup, but it also requires the most work from the driver.

Controls and Navigations

Turning Radius

The turning radius is not zero when using lap bars, but they are present when using steering wheels. The larger the turning radius in inches, the more time it will take to turn and resume mowing. If you want to optimize your mowing, aim for a mower with a turning radius between 16 and 18 inches.

Steering Wheel or Lap Bar?

Steering mechanisms vary among ride-on mower models, but cutting height settings are standard. It can either have a  wheel or two lap bars.

You may guide the mower in any direction by turning the wheel in the vehicle’s center.

On the other hand, when you install lap bars, you have complete command over how fast your back wheels go. A forward push on the handlebars propels the mower, while a backward draw on it stops it.

operating Cub Cadet Ultima ZT1 50

To make a turn, you must first press forward on one of the bars, which then causes only one of the rear wheels to revolve. Zero-turn technology allows mowers equipped with lap bars to make sharp turns in a fraction of the time.

However, the front wheels become unsteerable, making them behave like supermarket cartwheels. Climbing or descending a slope with such a unit is next to impossible.

Zero-Turn Capability

Let’s say you’re the creative type who loves adding a personal touch to your yard with flower beds or sculptures. In that case, a mower with zero-turn capabilities is your best friend. It’ll help you navigate those tight spaces and sharp turns effortlessly.

However, don’t be fooled by the term “zero-turn.” Some mowers still have a 45-degree turning radius despite the name. Being aware of this can save you from some disappointing mowing sessions.

Safety Features

Idling mowers are risky since they may reach speeds of up to 6 mph and traverse uneven ground. Blade clutch systems allow the operator to remove the blade without turning off the engine to prevent unintentional injuries.

stepping on Cub Cadet XT1 brake

You should search for a mechanism to prevent a mower from flipping over, as hills and valleys provide potentially dangerous impediments. 

If you like to mow when the sun is lower in the sky, you should look for a riding mower equipped with a reverse-awareness mechanism, bumpers, and headlights in case you run into anything you can’t see.

Rollover Protection

The rollover barricade consists of two upright poles above the rider’s head. These stakes will prevent you from sliding down the slope, which could cause serious injury.


It’s not a good idea to mow with your phone, keys, or anything else in your pockets. They may fall off because of the vibrations, and tracking them down afterward may be difficult.

You may store your belongings out of sight and easily accessible with under-seat storage. Having a place to put your drink is a nice touch that some units include; they assist in keeping things tidy.

Build Material

All right, you’re in for the long haul, and your mower should be too. You want a deck made from materials that can stand up to wear and tear. A 12-gauge steel deck, for instance, won’t just break at the first sign of an obstacle or tough soil.

You might also like to know that manufacturers put their mowers through rigorous testing to ensure they last. So, when you invest in a good mower, you’re really investing in years of reliable service.

Seat System and Comfort

Comfort is important to consider if customers want to spend an hour or more seated on the lawn mower.

mowing lawn with Cub Cadet XT1 LT42” Riding Mower

Shock-absorbing, padded seats are recommended due to the mower’s vibrations. Built-in storage, armrests, and cupholders are some of the conveniences available on some riding mower models.

So when you’re out shopping for that perfect mower, make sure to sit on the seat and give it a good test. Your back will thank you later.

Other Options or Features/ Accessories

If you’re dealing with more than 2 acres of land, there are other aspects you’ll need to take into account. From the steering system to the engine power and the cleaning system, every little detail counts. And let’s not forget the cutting width and transmission system. These features will make your life a whole lot easier in the long run.

Price and Warranty

Like a car, a riding lawn mower contains several moving parts that will eventually need to be serviced. For simplicity, electric models are your best bet—they don’t require you to mess around with oil or filters. Just push a button to start and stop. Easy as pie, right?

If you must choose a gas-powered vehicle, look for one that doesn’t require tools to change the oil and filter.

John Deere Z355E control panel

The built-in washout ports remove grime and moss accumulated under the deck.

And now, let’s talk about warranties. Those legal documents can be a maze of incomprehensible jargon. Pay close attention to the fine print. Your mower’s deck, front axle, and even the transmission might have different warranties with varying conditions and durations. Don’t let the warranty be an afterthought; it can save you a lot of grief down the line.

Safety and Maintenance Tips

Be sure to keep in mind the following guidelines for the safe use and upkeep of your new riding lawn mower:

mowing with John Deere Z355E


How long does it take to cut grass within 2 acres of land?

The time it takes to cut grass on a two-acre land can vary depending on several factors, such as the equipment used, the terrain, the quality of the grass, and the skill level of the person operating the equipment. 

With a small riding mower, you should expect the job to take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours, while a large zero-turn mower may need 20 to 30 minutes.

What mower size should I get for 2 acres?

You should have at least a 42-inch deck, as these are the most compact, high-performance options available. In addition, you can usually cut on two to three acres with a single charge or tank of petrol.

How many acres can a lawn tractor cover?

Depending on the size of the deck and the type of lawn tractor, you can mow anywhere from one to three acres each hour. 

A zero-turn lawn tractor with a large cutting deck can mow more than 3 acres in an hour, while a compact riding lawn tractor may mow 1 to 2 acres in the same period.

How long can my lawn mower last?

A riding mower’s longevity is determined by its initial build quality and your commitment to routine maintenance. 

The average lifespan of a riding lawn mower is around ten years, but the greatest riding lawn mower for a lawn of 1 acre can last as long as 20 years with regular servicing.

How can I increase the power of my riding mower?

Unless you know with small engine repair, you shouldn’t mess with your lawnmower, but if you want more power from your riding mower, you can unscrew the flywheel housing, remove the governor flap, and then reassemble the engine and the flywheel housing.

My Top Pick For a Riding Mower for 2 Acres:
RYOBI 42 in. 100 Ah Battery Electric Riding Zero Turn Mower

My top pick for the best riding lawn mower for 2 acres has to be the Ryobi 48V 42” zero-turn mower

What sets it apart from conventional riding mowers, in my experience, is its compact design, intuitive control system, ability to deliver a high-quality cut, handy blade brakes, and the added convenience of cruise control. Even if you’ve never maintained a lawn, you won’t have any trouble with this mower.  

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Robert Johnson is a passionate furniture maker & carpenter, sought after for his knowledge on the craft.
You’ve probably seen his down-to-earth wisdom in USA Today, Bobvila, Family Handyman, and The Spruce, where he has shared commentary and guidance on various woodworking topics.

Robert is the brain behind Sawinery, where he aims to share tips, tricks, and a passion for all things carpentry.

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