Sunday, August 3, 2008

Eco-Challenge: Gas Mower vs. Reel Mower

Can you spot the difference between these two photos? (Go Ahead, I'll give you a second...)

Which of the two photos represents mowing the lawn using a reel mower or the other, a gas mower? The answer a little later...first, how the challenge came about...

I recently heard of an argument as to whether a reel mower is a viable option for people nowadays. Yes, we are face-paced and want to get things done, but the realization of being more environmentally responsible of our choices and the price of gasoline, the challenge of the reel mower came about. So, I decided to figure out which of the two is better in cutting, time, and overall appearance after mowing.

One Friday, when the lawn was shaded, I used the reel mower. It took me about 1 hour to get it done. The grass was a bit overgrown, so it took me a while because I had to do a couple of run-throughs at points.

The next Friday, I asked my dad to mow the lawn using the gas mower. It took him about 20 minutes and put in the grass clippings in garbage bags to throw in the dumpster. Yeah, I know :(

So, looking back at the photos, can you tell which one of the photos is the product of the reel mower or the gas mower. Well, the first photo was mowed using the reel mower, while the second, the gas mower.

So, what are the pros and cons between the two, and what is the moral of the story. With the reel mower, you are exercising a bit more (which can be good or bad) and takes a substantial amount of time vs. the gas mower. However, the pros that I see in regards to the environment and responsible consumerism is:

you are not using fossil fuel
the clippings are being left on the grass and will biodegrade naturally
you are getting exercise, you don't have to stop to unload grass clippings

the cons to reel mowers:

takes longer to cut grass

the pros of gas mowers:

time saver

the cons:

uses fossil fuels
smells bad
adds to CO2 emissions

So, overall, I choose the reel mower because it gives me very comparable results to the gas mower and it takes only twice the amount of time than a gas mower (what's the rush?)

If you have any comments, let me know!

1 comment:

David K said...

We used to have one of these and as a kid. I totally remember cutting the lawn and I had terrible allergies. But yes I almost completely forgot about these things until this post.