Yardworks 20 HP / 46-in Transmatic Lawn Tractor
Excellent Lawn Tractor
I bought it on sale, and can only thing of good things to say about it, this is my first lawn tractor. Fill it up with regular gas. Use 10w30 oil. Probably 5w30 for winter. The engine is approx 620cc. I deflated my tires somewhat as they were rock solid when I checked it at home.
For a decent challenge, I actually cleared a tall hay field in the front of our property with this tractor (1.5 - 2 Acres), took two tanks of gas, had the deck at its highest setting and going slow the whole time, but it did it quite well, no overheating, no belt burning. I did remove the mulching cover for this.
After 5 or 6 hours, I did the first oil change as recommended, this is very very important as the engine is just being broken in and there are a lot of metal particulates which come off of new engines, the oil was quite dirty when I changed, which I had expected from break in. The motor takes 1.6 L of oil, I'm not sure why the bottle you get says "premeasured" and it only has 600mL in the bottle..so the extra bottle of oil I bought for the following change was used. Little tip when you do the oil change - make sure you're parked on top of a few layers of newspaper, oil is going to find its way out of where you want it (yes I used the included "half pipe" fitting too). I'm actually going to look into finding rubber tubing which fits snugly over the oil drain cap, I think this would make the change process clean and easy.
The deck has 5 height settings, each differ by approximately 0.5 inches. It starts quite easily, just make sure you have the throttle above full (ie, choke on), then bring the throttle back down, I ususally let it run for a minute from a cold start up at about 25% throttle then stay on full for the remainder of the lawn mowing. Yardworks techs recommended keeping it on full throttle while mowing..common sense for some, but maybe someone will find that useful.
Getting to know my property I've accidentally run over a very low cut tree stump, various twigs and light branches (no problem!), a beer box and even hit a low stone I wasn't able to see until too late. I really don't recommend any of that to anyone but the good news is that it still cuts grass like a champ and nothing was broken.
Switching gears is easy, there's a gear stick that moves up and down to change gears, if you're going to a higher gear you can just use the stick, but lower gears I'd recommend putting some pressure on the brake/clutch pedal. I personally apply a bit of pressure to the pedal anytime I change gears just to keep less stress on that plastic switch.
Forward/Neutral/Reverse are very easy to navigate with the designated handle. Mowing in reverse requires a few things be done in order for it to engage. 1) Deck must be on. 2) Key must be in F<->R position 3) Lastly, the triangular "!" button must be pressed. If you did it right, pushing the button will cause a red LED light to appear which indicates the mower will continue to run with the deck engaged in reverse. Once you've enabled reverse cutting mode, you don't have to do it again unless you shut off the engine or move the key out of F<->R mode.
I would *estimate* that you can cut 1 (non complex) acre of lawn grass in about 35-40 minutes with this tractor, on deck setting 3 going in 3rd gear. If your grass is long you'll have to go slower and/or raise the deck level, if the grass is maintained, then 35 minutes is my best guesstimate for an acre of grass.
I've called into MTD/Yardworks regarding a few different items and their phone techs were great to speak to, answered promptly and spoke clear english.
For some reason the Candian Tire staff told me that the oil in the engine was for shipping only and that I should change it before using. This was not what MTD/Yardworks told me. I used the oil and have nothing bad to report.
I'm on my 4th tank of gas without any issues to speak of! There isn't one reason not to recommend this to anyone, a 4 year warranty is the best you'll find, I've got a 5 year old 10.5HP Yardworks snowblower which still runs fantastic. Just do your oil changes and you'll be in fine shape!
June 28, 2009