Last updated on November 28th, 2023
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After many years of being a professional gardener and nurseryman, I am no stranger to the pitfalls of having to mow an uneven lawn; I’ve mowed plenty in my time. The thing is, an uneven lawn can be many things, from a bumpy lawn with humps and dips to a lawn with sloped sections. Either way, in this review, I’m going to show you some of the best lawn mowers for uneven lawns.
The first question I often get asked is, “can I also have a striped lawn?” This depends; if it’s more of a sloped lawn or not terribly uneven, then a decent rotary mower with a roller like these I previously reviewed could still be a possibility. For most people, you’re probably not going to get that perfectly striped lawn.
I always say, forget about the stripes and concentrate on getting a greener healthier lawn by treating with Iron sulphate to kill the moss and greening up the lawn and then removing the dead moss with a scarifier.
I’ll be honest, my favourite lawn mower for uneven lawns, sloped lawns and everything in between has to be my Hyundai HYM510SPE 196cc Self Propelled Lawn Mower pictured above. This is an amazing piece of kit but it is more suitable for medium to larger lawns so if you have a smaller lawn, maybe go for this Hyundai HYM460SPE Lawn Mower which has the same features but is slightly smaller or even consider the HYM430SP model which is smaller again.
If you want to go cordless, I have found my Bosch Rotak 370li Cordless lawn mower pictured above does an excellent job on my bumpy lawn and has served me well for a few years now, they’re actually a new design with an improved height adjustable button instead of a lever but it’s essentially the same model with a new colour scheme and some small improvements. This Murray 36 V Lithium-Ion 44cm Cordless Lawn Mower is also another alternative worth considering if you prefer cordless mowers.
When choosing a mower for uneven or sloped lawns, I personally look for a model that has a good choice of cuttings heights so I can get the right cut. I always recommend keeping the grass slightly longer to avoid scalping the lawn on humps, it just means it is slightly lusher and longer in the dips especially if the lawn is well maintained.
Next, I look for a self propelled model, this helps with sloped lawns as it makes it easier to mow up and down, especially on larger lawns with petrol models. This isn’t as important for smaller lawns or cordless models as they tend to be much lighter overall. For all petrol models, I always go self propelled as shown in the picture above of my Hyundai HYM510SPE 196cc Self Propelled Lawn Mower which also has 4-speed setting and electric start which is super handy.
Finally, another option would be to use a hover mower, back in the day we use to use these on steep slopes and pull them up and down with a rope if the slopes were too steep to walk, for domestic use or for smaller gardens any Flymo would be good but for larger gardens and slopes, especially for professional use, the Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Lawn Mower is what we use to use.
Here’s a summary of the models in this review – I consider them all Best Picks in their category.
- Best Pick Petrol and Self-propelled – Hyundai Self Propelled Petrol Mower, 510SPE
- Best Pick Cordless – Murray 36 V Lithium-Ion 44 cm Cordless Lawn Mower or Bosch Rotak 370li Cordless lawn mower
- Best Pick Electric – Flymo 1200w Chevron Electric Wheeled Lawn Mower
- Best Pick Petrol – Einhell GC-PM 40 S Petrol Lawn mower
- Best Pick Petrol and Hover – Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Lawn Mower
- Best Pick Electric and Hover – Flymo Glider Compact 330AX Hover Collect Lawn Mower
Lawn Mowers For Uneven Ground Reviews
1. Hyundai 510SPE Self Propelled Petrol Mower
Best Pick – Petrol and Self-propelled
You might say I’m a little biased as I do currently own this Hyundai 510SPE Self Propelled Petrol Mower but firsts things first, this is a model I purchased with my own money. I have owned mowers costing over £1000 and I would say this model sits right in the middle. The thing is, this mower easily competes with the top dogs but for half the price, it even comes with 3 year domestic warranty and 1 year for commercial use too. To me, that says it all, you don’t see Bosch offering a commercial warranty for mowers because they know they won’t last. To be fair, that might be a little harsh on Bosch, I also own the cordless 370Li mower and it proved very liable and a joy to use.
So I will get straight to the point, this mower has all the features found on top of the range models, electric start at the push of a button, tick, self propelled, well 2 ticks as it also has 4 speeds, amazing. Side dispatch – tick, mulching – tick. You get the idea, it ticks the boxes for every feature I can think of.
So, first let me quickly go over why it’s a good option for uneven lawns, first it has multiple easy to change cutting heights in six steps from 25mm to 75mm thats are easy to adjust with just one lever as shown in the picture above. As mentioned earlier, I recommend setting it slightly higher than you might do a level lawn to avoid scalping the lawn in higher places.
Something else I love about this model is that all the controls are centrally controlled on the handles including the self-propulsion which has 4 different speeds from a very slow walk to a brisk walk. You can see in the picture above that the electric start button which also doubles as a key as it’s removable, is just under the self propelled lever that controls the speed.
It’s also worth noting that the choke lever is also located on the left side of the handles along with two cup holders, handy for hot days or cold days for that matter.
Let’s just talk a little about the 196cc Hyundai 4-stroke engine. This motor has low emissions and doesn’t need much maintenance. Plus it’s designed to be economical to use which I have found it to be despite the fact it is quite a large engine.
As already mentioned, you don’t have to pull the cord to start this mower – just push the electric start button and it powers the engine up, apply the choke first for a cold start though. As you can see in the picture above, the battery is built into the mower so can easily be recharged by plugging it into a standard UK socket. In terms of how many starts I’ve been able to get, maybe 200 from a single charge, hard to count but it’s a lot.
As a self-propelled motor with rear wheel drive, you have to walk along at the speed of the mower. But with this particular model, you have a choice of four speeds to match the speed you need. This is importable as you can adjust the speed to the job at hand, for example, I tend to mow slopes slower than I do straight runs and on very bumpy lawns, I tend to mow slower than I do level lawns. I think what I’m trying to say is that it’s an excellent feature to have multiple speeds on uneven ground.
What I will say is that this Hyundai 510SPE is designed to cope with medium to larger lawns. The cutting width is a generous 51cm and the collection box for the clippings holds 70L so is fairly large. You won’t have to cross your lawn too often nor stop to empty the bin every few minutes.
You can choose the mulch option if you want to be eco-friendly with your grass clippings and return them to the lawn. It’s not a feature I use too often as I prefer to remove the clipping from people’s lawns and then apply a weed, feed and killer but some clients do prefer it if they have their grass cut more regularly.
Side dispatch as shown in the picture above is another feature that can be useful if mowing a large paddock or orchard or garden for that matter. By their very nature there often not level and this mower has a side dispatch feature. This means you can dispatch the clipping to the side and collect larger if you want.
The one downside to this model is the weight, it’s not too heavy but it’s probably not suitable for my gran for example, however, it has a full steel deck and powerful engine so this is expected and being self propelled it’s not an issue when actually using it.
If this is too large and you have a smaller lawn, maybe go for this Hyundai HYM460SPE Lawn Mower which has the same features but is slightly smaller and more manageable or even consider the HYM430SP model which is smaller again and a great self propelled model for smaller lawns it just doesn’t have the side dispatch system.
- Petrol lawn mower for medium to large lawns with slopes.
- Powered by a 196cc 4-stroke engine from Hyundai.
- Electric start (battery included) via a push button.
- Rear wheel drive.
- Has four speeds to match the user walking speed.
- Operator Presence Control safety feature.
- Large 70L hard top grass collection bin.
- Six steps of cutting height from 25mm to 75mm.
- 51cm cutting width.
- Four grass collecting modes: collect; rear discharge; side discharge; mulch.
- Handles fold for ease of transport and storage.
- Comes with assembly tools and user manual.
- Three-year warranty.
- Heavy and large.
The Hyundai Self Propelled Petrol Mower, 510SPE, is built to cut large expanses of grass. Its powerful 196cc 4-stroke engine powers a rear wheel drive with offers a choice of four speeds for you to walk behind it. The wide cutting width (51cm) makes short work of your medium to large size lawn and the six cutting heights offer the full gamut of lawn styles making it handy for uneven lawns. And there’s a mulch function for returning the cuttings to the lawn. Overall it’s a great model and well worth considering. If petrol is not for you, my next mower below by Murray is a great alturnative.
2. Murray 36 V Lithium-Ion 44cm Cordless Lawn Mower
Best Pick – Cordless
The Murray 36V Lithium-Ion 44cm Cordless Lawn Mower offers the convenience of not being tethered by an electric cord to your house when cutting the lawn. Plus it’s lighter weight than petrol lawn mowers, more convenient and lower maintenance. And the brushless technology is designed for efficient and economical running as well as low noise. What is there not to love about cordless lawn mowers, especially decent ones.
This model uses the Briggs and Stratton battery system and not some Chinese cheap knock off which is what I like about it, this unit runs on two 18V 5.0Ah Lithium-ion batteries (included). You also receive a dual battery charger, so you’ll be all set. If you compared cordless models you will see that most come with 2Ah batteries, basically, the higher the Ah rating the longer the running time. And powered by two 18v means it’s just as powerful as the 36v alternatives too.
This cordless lawn mower is suitable for bumpy (and flat) small and medium size lawns. I think it would be suitable for lawns up to a maximum lawn size of 640m2 as the batteries run for around 30-40 minutes. But if you have a spare set of batteries ready charged, of course, you can swap them in and go on for longer.
The cutting width is suitable for medium lawns too, at 44cm. A single lever lets you choose from seven cutting heights from 25mm to 75mm so plenty of adjustable depending on how bumpy your lawn is. While this doesn’t give you the shortest blades of grass, the upper end of the range is more than generous to provide a lush area and this means it is suited for uneven lawns.
The grass collection bag has a generous 50L capacity, not bad for a cordless model. It has a “full” indicator so you know when to stop to empty it.
The ergonomic handles are designed for your comfort. The soft grip covering minimises the vibrations your hands receive. And you can adjust the handles to three positions. You won’t have to hunch over or stretch up to mow the lawn. The handles are easily folded to reduce the storage space that the lawn mower needs in your shed or garage.
- Cordless lawn mower with efficient brushless motor technology.
- Uses Briggs and Stratton 18V Lithium-ion battery system.
- Comes with two 18V, 5.0Ah batteries and dual charger.
- Covers small to medium lawns up to 640m2.
- Runs for a maximum of 40 minutes from a single charge.
- Seven cutting heights accessed by a single lever go from 25mm to 75mm.
- The cutting width is 44cm.
- The grass collection bag holds 50L.
- The adjustable and foldable handle has an ergonomic soft grip.
- Weighs 14kg.
- Five-year limited warranty on the product and three-year warranty on the batteries and charger.
- No mulching function.
The Murray 36 V Lithium-Ion 44 cm Cordless Lawn Mower comes with the required two batteries and a dual charger so you can get ready to mow your lawn. The 44cm cutting width lends itself to medium size gardens but you’ve only 30-40 minutes of battery power to cut your grass. (Unless you have another set of batteries from tools in the same range to swap in.)
The seven cutting heights, easily accessed by one lever, give you a good range of grass blade heights to choose from. The five-year limited warranty is a consideration as well if you’re looking closely at this model. Overall this is a brilliant cordless model.
3. Flymo Chevron 1200w Electric Wheeled Lawn Mower
Best Pick – Electric
The Flymo Chevron 1200w Corded Electric Wheeled Lawn Mower is a compact electric mower for uneven ground. It’s designed for small gardens and its relatively narrow cutting width of 32cm reflects this.
You have a choice of three cutting heights ranging from 20mm to 60mm. This doesn’t get you the close-cropped lawn available with larger mowers, but it’s a suitable range of heights for a domestic garden and more importantly, you don’t want to cut too short on a bumpy lawn anyway as it will scalp the humps. You do, however, get the stripes that you see on Wimbledon courts as there’s a rear roller on this unit to flatten the grass. However, this may not work too well on the uneven bits of your lawn so don’t expect neat stripes across a bumpy surface. If you had two lawns, one flat and one uneven, at least your level lawn could still have stripes.
The grass collection box is also proportional to the size of this lawn mower. It holds 29L of grass cuttings. If you have a small lawn you won’t have to empty it too often but if you’re cutting a large area of grass, you’ll be running to the green bin with the clippings quite a bit. But there is a transparent window so you can see when it needs to be emptied.
You get the usual 10m power cord with this mower. You may need to purchase a grounded outdoors extension cord if your grass is away from your outside power outlet. Carrying the mower to the lawn isn’t a problem as it weighs only 8kg and there’s a convenient carry handle on the unit.
- Compact electric (32V, 1,200W) rotary lawn mower in Flymo’s signature orange and grey colours.
- Designed for small gardens.
- The cutting width is 32cms.
- Three cutting heights of grass, between 20mm and 60mm.
- The rear roller makes stripes on the grass.
- The grass collection box has a 29L capacity.
- Carry handle to easily transport the unit.
- The power cable is 10m long.
- Weighs 8.01kg.
- Grass collection box is difficult to assemble.
The Flymo Chevron 1200w Electric Wheeled Lawn Mower is a lightweight and powerful corded electric lawn mower that handles uneven ground with ease. On even ground it produces the famed stripes in your lawn that give it that bit of sophistication. It’s a great mower for smaller lawns or larger ones if you plan to just discharge the clippings back to the lawn and have a long extension cord.
Other electric models we’ve reviewed
In our many other reviews of lawn mowers, these are the other electric rotary mowers suitable for uneven ground which earn our recommendation.
Einhell GE-EM 1233 1250W Electric Rotary Lawn mower (small lawns)
Bosch AdvancedRotak 650 Electric Rotary Lawn mower (medium to large lawns)
Bosch Rotak 40 Ergoflex Electric Rotary Lawn mower (small and medium lawns)
Bosch Rotak 34 R Electric Rotary Lawn mower (medium lawns; has roller)
4. Einhell GC-PM 40 S Petrol Lawn Mower
Best Pick – Petrol
The Einhell GC-PM 40 S Petrol Lawn Mower is a fairly small mower with an 80cc, four-stroke engine. This means that you don’t have to mix the petrol and the oil as fuel as you do with two-stroke engines. Just put them into their separate tanks and you’re good to go. This model has a rear-wheel drive for power just like my Hyundai alturnative. But you can disengage this if you need to go more gently over your lawn.
You start the mower with the usual pull cord start, which is reliable and easy to use. With a cutting width of 40cm, this unit is best for medium size lawns up to 1,000m2. Though with a petrol mower, it’s easy to cut larger areas of grass, it just takes more time and fuel. The 45L grass collector ensures that most of your time is spent cutting the grass and not emptying the grass clippings. The fill level indicator lets you know when you need to take a break and get rid of the cuttings, using the two built-in handles to lift the full box.
You have a choice of seven heights of grass in steps from 25mm to 60mm. This is from quite short to a bit straggly. The ergonomic mower handle is foldable for ease of carrying the unit and for storing it in quite a small space. In addition, the plastic body makes this petrol mower lighter in weight than steel body models, and easier to move manoeuvre.
- Petrol lawn mower with an Einhell 4-stroke, 80cc, engine.
- Rear-wheel drive that can be disengaged.
- Pull cord start.
- Seven steps of cutting heights from 25mm to 60mm.
- The cutting width is 40cm.
- Plastic body.
- Best for medium lawns up to 1,000m2.
- The handle is ergonomic and foldable.
- The grass collector has a 45L capacity and a fill level indicator.
The Einhell GC-PM 40 S Petrol Lawn Mower has the power of an 80cc petrol mower backed up by a rear-wheel drive. Its lighter weight plastic body makes it easier to turn corners and control, and the ergonomic handle helps with reducing the vibrations on your hands. Not being tethered by an electric cord means that you can take this mower to the furthest point of your medium size lawn and start cutting from there.
5. Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Lawn Mower
The Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Lawn Mower is the best of the few petrol hover mowers I found. This type of mower is generally heavier and more difficult to move around than its electric equivalent. The Flymo XL500 model carries a 160cc, 4-stroke and very reliable Honda engine, making it suitable for larger lawns with bumps and inclines.
The cutting width backs this up at a wide 51cm. Your choice of cutting heights is on the short end of the range from 10mm to 30mm in three steps. This is a model to choose if you like to keep your grass quite closely shorn. Just remember to have a spanner at hand when you want to change the cutting height as you adjust it by removing or adding spacers from underneath the blade.
This hover mower does operate above the grass, but it weighs just over 18kg. Make sure that you can manoeuvre such a unit before you invest in this model as the XL500 is designed to operate on a large lawn. It’s worth noting it’s not heavy when in use as it floats on a cushion of air but once turned off it needs to be lifted although you can buy transport wheels for these mowers too.
This lawn mower doesn’t come with a grass collection box, and it doesn’t have a mulching feature. That means that the grass clippings are discharged directly back onto the lawn. This is great if you fertilise your lawn in this manner, but not so good if you like a clean lawn as you have to rake up all the clippings after cutting the grass.
- Petrol hover lawn mower with a four-stroke 160cc Honda engine.
- Great for large lawns and difficult slopes.
- The cutting width is 51cm.
- Cutting height is in three steps from 10mm to 30mm.
- Weighs 18.2kg.
- No grass collection bin.
- Needs to be stored flat.
- Need a spanner to change cutting height.
Designed for large lawns, the Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Lawn Mower has a powerful 160cc Honda engine to cut your grass. The cutting width of 51cm is one of the widest we’ve seen but the cutting height range is on the short side of grass blade length. Without a collection box or mulch facility, you have to leave the clippings on your lawn or rake them up. If this is your lawn care routine, then the Flymo XL500 Petrol Hover Lawn Mower is a good petrol hover mower to buy.
6. Flymo Glider Compact 330AX Hover Collect Lawn Mower
Best Pick – Electric and Hover
The Flymo Glider Compact 330AX Hover Collect Lawn Mower has some features that other hover mowers don’t have. This adds to your convenience and comfort. As does its lightweight of 9.4kg, so it’s easy to manipulate.
The Flymo Glider 330AX is a corded electric, hover lawn mower that ably deals with bumps, slopes and inclines in your grass area. It’s best for small to medium lawns as it has a medium-narrow cutting width of 33cm. Your choice of cutting heights is again on the short side, from 12cm to 32cm, similar to that of the petrol hover mower we review. But you don’t need a spanner here to make the adjustments; just use the central lever to move from one length to the others.
Another unusual feature among hover mowers is that this Flymo model has a collection box. Yes, you don’t have to leave the clippings where they fall or rake them up afterwards. While the 22L capacity grass collection box isn’t that large it does have a clear viewing section. You won’t have to keep stopping to see if it’s full enough for you to take to your compost heap.
- Electric hover mower with 1,700W of power.
- Best for small or medium lawns.
- The cutting width is 33cm.
- Cutting heights are in steps from 12mm to 32mm.
- The collection box holds 22L of grass clippings.
- The power cord is 10m long.
- Foldable handles for storage and ease of carrying.
- Replacements are available for the metal blade.
- Weighs 9.4kg.
- Can’t adjust the handle height.
The Flymo Glider Compact 330AX Hover Collect Lawn Mower gives you the freedom to hover lightly over your lawn and easily cut the grass. Well, for as long as your power cord is. This model is best for small and medium gardens and the 33cm cutting width supports this. Anything larger and the 22L collection box will need emptying a great deal. The Flymo Glider Compact 330AX is a good lightweight electric hover mower for most domestic gardens.
Buyer’s Guide for lawn mowers for uneven ground
I’ve presented many different kinds of lawn mowers in this review, from how they’re powered to how they operate. They all have one thing in common – they’re rotary mowers that work well on uneven ground and slopes.
This Buyer’s Guide is a brief glossary of the lawn mower terms in this article.
Electric lawn mowers are powered by corded electric. You plug the power cable you receive (it’s usually 10m long) into an outside power outlet and you’re all set to go. If your lawn is away from your power points or it’s a large area of grass, you need to buy a grounded extension cord.
Petrol lawn mowers are usually powered by four-stroke engines. If so, you don’t need to mix the petrol and oil together as they are separate. Two-stroke engines, however, will need you to mix these components in the specified ratios in the (usually included) fuel mixing bottle. The size of the motor (in cc) fits with how large the lawn mower actually is.
Cordless lawn mowers run on Lithium-ion batteries, usually 18V or 36V. The best purchases come with the batteries and the charger included. However, if you buy into a brand’s range of power tools, you can use the interchangeable batteries you may already have. Battery power doesn’t last long with these mowers so they’re best for small lawns.
Uneven ground and slopes
Not many people have an absolutely flat lawn, especially if children and pets are around. While other types of lawn mowers can handle very slight inclines, you need a rotary mower for slopes and bumps in your lawn. But remember, that there’s a limit to what lawn mowers can do on the steepest slopes.
Rotary mowers have blades (usually metal) that rotate horizontally underneath the lawn mower body. The blades and there are generally two, are connected into one unit which is removable if you want to replace it or to sharpen the blades. They cut the grass blades by coming at them at right angles and so no squishing of the grass by the blades occurs.
Rotary mowers are the best all-round choice of lawn mower as they cut grass well on uneven land and on slopes. They also can deal with long grass if you don’t mow yours too often. Rotary mowers may even have a roller on the back to make those prized stripes on your lawn.
A push lawn mower is just a regular lawn mower that you have to push and guide along. It can be powered by electricity, petrol, battery or your own manual efforts. We didn’t need this term until self-propelled lawn powers came to the market.
Self-propelled lawn mowers are usually powered by petrol or by corded electricity. These are lawn mowers that move under their own power – you’re just there to steer them along the right grass cutting path.
Many of these lawn mowers plod along at just one speed, so you have to match your walking speed to how fast they go. The best models, however, offer you a choice of speeds to walk at. Choose a slow speed for the days you feel like a stroll and the fast speed when you need to get some exercise in.
Hover lawn mowers are rotary mowers that float above your lawn on a cushion of air. They’re very lightweight and easy to manipulate. As they don’t have wheels, you can cut your lawn in all directions, not just in a straight line. This proves useful if you have a curving outline to your grass or many nooks and crannies of grass.
Most hover mowers are electric powered, though I do recommend a petrol one in this review.
However, mowers are good on slopes up to about 45°. However, most models of this type don’t have grass collection bins, though we include one that does in this article.
Not all lawn mowers in this review have grass collection bins or bags. Without this, the grass clippings just go back on the lawn. Here are the usual discharge options you can find on the best lawn mowers
The cuttings collect into a box or bag that fits on the lawn mower. The position of this collector could be on the side of the mower body or at the back. The larger/more powerful the mower, the larger the collection box will be. Look for boxes that have a fill level indicator or at least a transparent window for you to see how full they are.
This means that the grass clippings are thrown back on the lawn at the rear of the mower. Visual this and you’ll see that this is where you stand to operate the machine.
The grass cuttings are put back onto the lawn on one side of the lawn mower. What side that is is usually specified. This is out of your way, though you do end up with a small line of grass bits between your cut strips.
The lawn mower chops all the clippings up very finely and returns them to the lawn as mulch. The clippings should be so fine that you don’t actually notice them.
A rotary lawn mower can cut all your lawn so that it’s your pride and joy – even the uneven bits. Up and down slopes and across bumpy bits, these mowers trim the grass cleanly and efficiently. However your rotary mower is powered and whatever type you choose, it can cut grass found on most types of ground in domestic gardens.
BEST PICK – PETROL AND SELF PROPELLED
BEST CORDLESS PICK
I have many more reviews of lawn mowers. Please check out, for example:
Last update on 2023-11-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API