garden tools

green works reel mower : it’s the real deal

We were ecstatic when our Green Works reel mower was delivered nearly two months ago. It was a far cry from the weed trimmer we were using the summer before. After attempting to get the gas mower running (one that was already here when we moved in) and failing, we relied on our electric Green Works weed trimmer to maintain our ½ acre property. It sounds a little ridiculous, but the whole property isn’t covered in turf. Our grass is patchy, and in some areas, it’s darn near bald. (Excuse the blue paint I’m sporting, these were taken after we wrapped up a different project.)

reel-mower-review We attempted to buy a reel mower through Craigslist, but every time we inquired about one, it was radio silence. It didn’t take long for us to switch gears from buying used to buying a new one that wouldn’t come with previous wear and tear.

Because of its great price ($95 before tax and shipping) and outstanding reviews, we settled on the 20” 5-blade push reel mower (affiliate link). This was one of the best deals that included a grass catching basket, a must have for us compost obsessed folks.


So far, our mower has served us well. It can take a few laps to get a clean even cut and some of the weeds can be difficult to catch with the mower. That’s where pairing the reel mower and weed trimmer together comes in handy. The reel mower takes care of the majority of the job and the electric trimmer gives it a clean finish.

One of the disadvantages to using a reel mower on our lawn is dealing with all of the sticks that constantly fall from the trees that blanket our property. If a stick or other piece of debris get lodged between the blade and the frame, it stops you in your tracks. Then you have to push the blade the opposite direction to free the object. Usually this trick allows you to proceed without further hiccups, but it definitely slows the pace.


Green Works 20″ Reel Mower


Easy to assemble. Attaching the handle is all there is to the assembly. With just a few screws (included) you’ll have your new wheels out for a spin in minutes.

Lightweight and easy to maneuver. The reel mower is so light I can lift it with little effort still being mindful of the blades of course. The mower easily navigates while mowing or wheeling it backwards to put it away.

Easy to keep clean and maintain. Unlike my experiences with gas mowers, the reel mower stays really clean. My OCD side that likes to keep things looking new for as long as possible loves it. To maintain sharp blades use a backlapping reel mower sharpening kit and treat the blades once a year.

Eco friendly. I love that our mower uses 0% gas or electricity. It’s just another small step we can take to reduce our footprint.


The grass catching basket can be trying. It might just be me but I fumbled nearly every time I remove and reattached the bag from the mower. The simple buckle that attaches the bag to the handle of the mower gets away from me and sometimes takes me a few tries to get it. The walls of the bag are nice and tall but it doesn’t actually hold that much grass, resulting in more stops to dump it.

Debris gets caught in the blade reel. Most reel mowers have this problem I imagine. As I said above, thick debris frequently get stuck between the blades and the frame. To avoid this, I do a sweep through the yard prior to mowing.


All in all we are digging our Green Works reel mower. For us, the pros far outweigh the cons, and we hope to use the reel mower for many seasons to come.

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