Just like walk-behind mowers and riding mowers, tow-behind mowers are available in a variety of styles designed to meet a variety of needs. They have no propulsion of their own, and must be towed behind a riding mower, ATV, or UTV.
Rough cut mowers are designed for cutting through thick brush and weeds, and they can even hack through small saplings.
Finish cut mowers are designed for cutting grass just like a lawn mower, and they can be offset behind your lawn or garden tractor to increase your cutting width and reduce the time it takes to finish mowing.
Tow-behind reel mowers are ideal for mowing golf courses, very large lawns, athletic fields, and other open-range areas that require a quality cut. They're easier to maintain because they're entirely mechanical and require no gas or oil changes.
Before choosing a tow-behind mower, be sure you know your towing vehicle's towing capacity. You should not tow more weight than your tractor, ATV, or UTV is rated to handle.
Gang Reel Mowers You'll often see golf course landscapers towing gang mowers over fairways, cutting just grass.
Unlike most lawn mowers, gang reel mowers don't have an engine. Instead, they're towed behind an ATV or tractor at speeds up to 4 miles per hour.
These ultra-wide mowers contain 3, 5, or 7 reels, stretching up to 11 feet wide so you can mow up to 5 acres per hour. Gang reel mowers cut like scissors, providing a precise finish for a well manicured lawn. They're not designed to cut high grass, weeds, or brush.
Finish Cut Mowers Finish cut mowers, (a.k.a. trail mowers) are also designed for mowing large grassy areas - much like a gang reel mower. These mowers are built more like modern day lawn mowers with a high-powered engine mounted on top of a large cutting deck.
If your yard contains lots of trees shedding twigs and pine cones, you'll need the extra engine strength to split them into smithereens.
With cutting widths up to 5½ feet, finish cut mowers aren't as wide as gang reel mowers. However, the tow bar of a finish cut mower can be offset from the tow vehicle so that you can use both the mower deck on your tow vehicle (if so equipped) and the cutting deck of the finish cut mower in a side-by-side manner to increase the total cutting width. This would allow you to mow up to 30 or 32 acres per day.
A tow-behind finish cut mower will keep your lawn looking great. But if you have high grass, weeds, or brush that needs to be tamed, this isn't the mower for you. Take a look below to learn about rough cut mowers.
Tow-Behind Mower Buyer's Guide - Find out How to Pick the Perfect Tow-Behind Mower. Our lawn mower how-to library can help you pick the perfect reel lawn mower, push lawn mower, riding lawn mower, zero turn lawn mower, lawn tool or lawn mower accessory.