How to Mow Safely On the Hills : A Definite Guide for Beginner

Let’s get the real fact about mowing on the hill.

Mowing grass on a plan lawn yard with a lawnmower is not a big deal, but it comes with a real challenge while you need to mow on the hills. If you are not well alert or don’t take proper safety measures, steep hills might accelerate the risks in many ways.

The lawnmower can tip over on you resulting in leading you to the injury, even to the death.

I can share with you an alarming data that over 80000 people visit the hospital each year only in the USA because of lawn mower-related injuries.

This tool can transform into a deadly one on the hills due to incorrect driving and inadequate safety procedures.

However, you should not be much worried about to handle the mowing jobs on the toughest terrain if you are well educated. Here is a thorough guideline showing you which mower is safe for sharp hills and which mowing approach would lessen your effort and health risks.

So read on and hope you will be better informed.

Choose the Best Lawn Mower for Your Hilly Terrain

Several lawn mowers are available in the market. Before buying for you,  know the option which matches best with your hill type and whether it is build to handle slope. The first thing you should bother in mowing your property is to pick the right equipment.

Ride-On Mowers

Ride-on Mowers

Although the ride on mower is more convenient than a push mower, it is suitable for a lawn with fewer ditch lines and comparatively flat. But it presents a great challenge for the steeper hill — the more vertical the slope, the higher the risks. While sitting on the riding mower, it is tough to grip over its balance. The machine can flip, and you might topple down the hill. It is merely recommended for the inclines much gentle. If the mountain has a 1-foot slope for every 4 feet terrain, it is called soft surface.

Ride on slope and brush mower is specially designed for steep hills which can mow up to 35° grade. Tractor style riding mower carrying a pivoting front axle is worst for mowing a slope.  Your mower might automatically tilt over because of this axle. Besides, this type of tractor has only rear brakes. So it might cause you to fail to brake and slow down.

Self- Propelled Push Mower

self propelled mower

A self-propelled lawn mower is also called walk behind lawn mower as your try here is to guide from behind. Since it significantly decreases your effort, unlike the traditional lawn mower, it could be the first pick for any gardener.

If you have a more large lawn and steep slopes, it will help you a lot, especially for turns. While going up or down, the variable speed of this mower makes it an easy thing for you to reach a constant speed comfortable to mow the angle. So I suggest you select the push mower if you have a sharp hilly lawn and if you are the first-timer.

Safety Procedure Before Mowing a Hill

Mowing a plain home turf is much easier than mowing a slope. Let’s get clear about the risks associated with mowing your steep lawn. You can’t merely go for mowing without being watchful of some precautions:

Inspect Your Land

Although most people think this is pointless but checking your land before mowing is a must thing to avoid unnecessary injury. Check the hazards on the incline like ruts, rocks, bricks or sticks, holes, etc. those could get in the way. Get rid of all these obstacles that might cause the machine to move over these rough surfaces resulting in it tipping.

Wire, ropes, etc. lying on the surface would tangle in the blade of the mower. Be alert about these objects; otherwise, they will cause you to get injured while releasing the stuck edge.

Mow on Dry Grass

Though mowing dry grass is not always out of harm’s way for different reasons, wet grass mowing is not ideal as well. Well, most importantly, your chance of slipping on wet grass is much higher.

Wet grass might also end up clogging up in the machine requiring the tools recurrent cleanings. So be sure that the herb you are going to cut is dry.

Go Slow With the Mower

With steady speed, you can approach the hills quickly and cope with the hasty challenges. Sometimes on a drought-dry ground, a lawn mower loses tire traction. Alongside you can’t overlook the risks of moving over unexpected bumps or holes while speeding your rider up.

Exposure to Sunlight

Mowing in the sunshine is an essential condition for safety. You can’t notice unexpected rubbish and ditches during a shaded afternoon.

Horizontal Direction

If you have a push mower, you have greater control over it. Start mowing side to side and there is a slim chance topping over. Going up the hills may lead the machine to roll back on you, causing grave hurt to you. Again, going down the hills is also not risk-free as it can get away from you and speed down the slope resulting in the mower unavoidable damage.

Up and Down Direction

Unlike the push mower, run the riding mower up and down the hill. Thus you are ensuring more ground safety by moving across the height of the mountain. If you go side to side here, you are more likely to experience your equipment flipping over and get yourself fatally wounded.

But while going up, you are against the gravity that still makes you prone to slipping.  So, riding a mower for a steep slope presents some challenges that you can overcome by buying one specifically designed for the hills mowing.

Adjust the Height of the Mower

Fixing the height of the apparatus is very crucial. When it is too low to your surface, it might go scalping your lawn. At the same time, setting it too high would leave the long grass and patches behind. In that case, you have to repeat the whole task. So before go mowing, fix your tool first and of course don’t do that while the blade is in action.

Further Tips

  • Don’t start or stop the mower on the slope. It’s quite risky.
  • Mulching and bagging do not always help you in mowing. Potentials to make the tool unstable and top-down. If possible, reduce some attachments.
  • Make a plan for an escape route in case you lose your control over the mower.
  • Service the mower if it is not new and check the condition of its accessories.
  • While pushing go forward, don’t pull it towards you.
  • Turn slow. Quick turn is a potential cause of tipping over.
  • Be wary when you are mowing near any water edge and embankment. Your machine may slip down and sink in the waterlogged turf.
  • Don’t choose a zero-turn mower for mowing the sharp hill.
  • Go through the operators’ manual and carry out regular maintenance. It’s highly recommended.


Mow a hill is quite a different experience than residential plane lawn mowing. Knowing only the procedure is not enough for mowing. You must follow the manufacturers’ directions though; your foremost duty comes with being quite alert of all the risk factors before cutting down the grass of the hilly lawn.

If you are a first-timer, using a ride-on mower, the especially old zero-turn mower is a hard nut to crack. Even though options are there to pick the riding mower mainly designed for the hilly landscape, it comes with a considerable price tag as well.

So, if you are a proud owner of the sizable steep territory, a self-propelled push mower is a great option.  Learn all the safety measures associated with it, as I suggested here and go for mowing with all possible precautions.