Robot mowers are growing in popularity every month it seems. New mowers are entering the markets from all the well-known brands like Husqvarna, Worx, and Ambrogio. But even small start-ups are entering the market with Kickstarter campaigns raising millions of dollars.
All of it shows that the number of homeowners using these mowers is accelerating.
But while these mowers allow us to take a more hands-off approach when maintaining our lawn, it may make us forget these little machines still need regular maintenance and a little TLC to keep them operating at their best and your lawn in top shape as well.
One key area that is often overlooked is the blade. Robot mowers use a different style of blade than a traditional mower. This means it has different maintenance requirements and a different lifespan.
Below, we’ll go over what you need to know about replacing your robot mower blade and what to look out for when doing so.
What Makes Robot Mower Blades Different?
Unlike traditional mowers, robot mowers do not use large steel blades that can be sharpened over and over again. Although most manufacturers of traditional mowers recommend a new blade each year, many owners can get more life out of them through regular sharpening.
Robot mower blades are not meant to be sharpened. They are smaller and also made of a different material than traditional mower blades. The edges are also generally sharper depending on the type of blade. This makes robot mower blades a disposable item. Once they become dull, it’s time for a replacement.
How Often To Replace Robot Mower Blades?
Generally, these blades need to be replaced every 2 months or so under normal circumstances. Each mower and each lawn can be a little different, so you may get more or less mileage from your blade.
There are also different styles of blades. Most robot mower blades fall into one of these two categories.
These are the most common in smaller robot mowers and feature disc-shaped blades on a turntable. There are often multiple floating heads and discs per mower. These cannot be sharpened or maintained and last about 2 months in most cases.
They are very easy to replace and it’s important to replace all the included hardware when replacing a blade, including all screws and fasteners.
These are somewhat less common and do resemble a traditional mower blade in some ways. These can generally last a whole season in a non-commercial setting. As with the disc blades, make sure to change all included hardware when replacing these blades.
Also of note, always make sure all battery packs are removed from the mower before servicing.
Blade Guidelines From Different Mower Manufacturers
Husqvarna suggests replacing the blades every 1-2 months for lawns up to .25 acres while using a mower appropriate for the lawn size.
Worx suggests their Landroid series of mowers should have the blades replaced every 3-4 months with regular usage and with a mower matched to the proper lawn size. Worx blades also only require replacing the cutting edge of the blade instead of the whole unit.
Ambrogio mowers use a star-shaped blade which generally lasts longer. These tend to only need replacement every season to maintain maximum performance.
Heisenberg doesn’t offer a specific replacement schedule but suggests users look for signs of a dull blade. However, we suggest changing these every 2-3 months as that is the typical lifespan for the blades used in the LawnMeister.
Luba uses a somewhat different schedule for their blades. They are similar to the Worx blades but Luba suggests flipping them over at 50 hours, then fully replacing them after 100 hours of total use. Luba now offers two variations of blades and this schedule applies to the longer-lasting Endurance blades. Earlier blades may need replacement sooner.
If your Segway mower is used regularly, they recommend replacing the blades and screws every 1–2 months to ensure safety and better mowing results.
Signs That Blades Need To Be Replaced
Just following the guidelines for replacement should be enough for keeping the blades in good shape. However, there are signs to watch out for that indicate the blades are dull and need to be changed sooner.
Dull blades on a robot mower will generally make its operation noisier than usual. With a gas-powered mower, you usually can’t discern this increase in noise with dull blades. But with an electric robot mower, you can tell when the cutting action gets louder.
Grass Tips Are Frayed Or Dried
A dull blade will also cause your grass blades to be frayed at the tips. This can sometimes be seen across the whole lawn as the top just looks uneven and not very uniform. Upon closer inspection, you can generally see the blade tips being frayed or even dried-out or white in color.
This means the blades need replacing immediately to maintain the health of the lawn.
What Can Wear Robot Mower Blades Faster?
Certain environments or actions can cause your blades to dull faster. Some of these you can’t control, but others you may be able to by adjusting a few settings on the mower.
Harsher soil with more sand or very fine rocks can shorten the life of the blades. This fine sand gets kicked up and works as an abrasive on the blades, dulling them.
Not much you can do about this and if you have this type of soil, you may need to replace blades sooner.
Many people like robot mowers because they can cut more frequently, which means healthier grass. However, more frequent cutting means shorter blade life, at least in terms of time.
Consider mowing less frequently if you notice your blades are dulling sooner than you would like.
Cutting Wet Grass
Most robot mowers have a moisture sensor to not cut after it rains. But grass can still be moist in the morning or evening due to temperature changes even if it doesn’t rain. Wet grass will dull a blade faster. Also, wet grass clumps that collect on the blade can dull a blade faster. So if you notice clumping on the blades, hose them off when possible.
Final Tips On Robot Mower Blade Replacement
Robot mowers do offer extreme convenience when it comes to keeping our lawns cut, but they still do require a little maintenance.
Just remember when changing your blades to follow all the manufacturer’s suggestions for safety. Different mowers have different safety and shut-off procedures. Make sure to take the time to ensure your mower is completely powered off and safe before performing any maintenance.
Also, blades come with new hardware and fasteners. It’s important to always use the new hardware that is included when changing blades. The screws and fastener parts can take a beating under the mower. If they break, the blades can fly off and damage the mower or be a hazard. So always change the screws and hardware along with the blade.
Some aftermarket companies have also popped up selling longer-life blades for certain mowers. Feel free to try these and let us know how they do. Most are listed for sale on Amazon. Are they just as good or better than the manufacturer’s OEM replacement blades? Let us know in the comments.
Finally, virtually all of these blades are meant to be replaced by the owner and only require a simple screwdriver. So feel free to replace these on your own. However, you can always contact a service shop if you prefer.