The Husqvarna Z246 zero-turn mower is an absolute beast. If you are looking for a zero-turn mower that is somewhere between a residential and commercial mower, look no further! The combination of an absolute beast of an engine, larger deck, and Husqvarna quality make for one of the best zero-turn mowers on the market.
Let’s take a look at the outline for this review:
We went ahead and ranked the best Husqvarna lawn tractors if you’re looking for something smaller!
Why we review lawn tools
The reason we started this website in the first place was because we had so much trouble trying to find reasonable, understandable, honest reviews for lawn equipment. And it’s not cheap! After hours and hours of research, trying products and returning them, and messing up our yards – we started this site.
As people who had to learn the hard way, we want you to know exactly what you are signing up for before you purchase a piece of equipment. That’s why we are committed to providing honest, easy-to-understand reviews that mean something.
Husqvarna makes chainsaws, lawn mowers, trimmers, leaf blowers, snow blowers, pressure washers, edgers, – basically every tool under the sun. Their color scheme of grey and bright orange sticks out like a sore thumb. When you pass by the big commercial mowers, you can almost always spot a Husqvarna product.
Husqvarna is one of the leading product suppliers for commercial lawn care companies including government and public agencies. Ever wonder how a vast open area at a park gets trimmed? Golf courses, national parks, etc.? It is likely a Husqvarna product.
If you are wondering how to pronounce Husqvarna, you have come to the wrong place. But this company’s 330 year history started in Sweden by manufacturing muskets. In 1919, they began engineering their first lawnmower engines. Since then, they have become a dominant force in all outdoor equipment.
A few things to look for in zero-turn mowers are blade size, transmission, accessory capabilities and cost. Blade size is important to keep consistent with the size of your lawn. Obviously longer blades are best for larger lawns, but begin to sacrifice a little bit of the agility afforded by a smaller blade.
Transmission is also an important consideration for a zero-turn mower. Most zero turn mowers do not have manual transmissions, but have either automatic or hydrostatic transmissions. Automatic works just like an automatic car does with a gas pedal and belts. Hydrostatic transmissions use fluid to transfer their power to the blades and the rest of the engine. I prefer and recommend hydrostatic transmissions because they typically require less maintenance and have a longer life (plus it sounds cooler).
Cost is generally of the utmost importance as well. Zero-turn mowers are expensive. In fact, you can buy an old Honda Civic for less than most zero turn mowers. Expect to spend no less than $3,000 for a good zero turn mower. Keep in mind that these will last a long time and save you a ton of weekend time when compared to a riding tractor or push mower. Zero turn mowers are an upfront investment, but reap a huge return over time.
The Husqvarna Z246 review: Features
The Z246 is a high-end residential zero-turn mower. We started this blog because we were so frustrated with the inability to find honest reviews on any product. We were also frustrated with all the technical specification lingo which makes
The Husqvarna Z246 has a 20-horsepower Briggs and Stratton engine. Although the Z254 has a bit more horsepower, this bad boy has a little bit smaller of a deck. Don’t be concerned, the 20 horsepower engine is plenty and will not have a much more noticeable difference than the 24hp Z254.
Check out our Z254 review by clicking here.
All that being said, this thing has some power under the hood. The one thing I love about all Husqvarna products is that they are flat out powerful. The oversized cooling fan, premium air filtration, chrome plated valves and smooth bearings all give this engine a high-end performance.
Another thing I love about Husqvarna is that they know what to outsource. Many of these companies try to vertically integrate and make sure that they own every single part of the mower. Husqvarna has the humility to ensure that their owners are getting a super refined product. Many mowers rely on Briggs and Stratton for their engines because they simply dominate the engineering of that space. When you get into the high horsepower range, you will be glad they decided to loop in Briggs and Stratton.
One element I love about the Husqvarna Z246 is that the folks over at Husqvarna have mowed lawns before. When putting together machines, they always consider the mowers’ experiences. This one uniquely feels like it was designed for commercial property landscaping, but also able to be used in your backyard.
For starters, the Z246 comes with an automatic park brake system. When the steering levers are deactivated (resting in a separated form), the parking brake is automatically activated. For context, most zero turn mowers have a separate brake that you have to engage. This is a part of all of their Z200 series mowers and something that is so intuitive, you couldn’t imagine buying a mower without it.
The Husqvarna Z246 also has an ergonomic control panel. Ergonomic is a label placed on anything, so I rolled my eyes when I first saw this. But it is nice having a panel that includes the ignition, hour meter, and speed control all together in one spot. On the other side of the control panel, there is the deck lift system, which is extremely standard on really any riding mower. Nothing special here.
This mower does come with the ability for some attachments. One attachment I absolutely love is the striping kit. Just makes your yard pop. The 46 inch mower deck on this is over double the size of your average push mower, so you can save time and money by upgrading to one of these puppies. Compare this to the 42 inch deck on the Z242f, which is slightly smaller.
Earlier, when I mentioned that this was designed for commercial folks, I meant it. An example of this is the rubber bellows (little rubber part at the bottom of gear shifters in manual cars), that are at the bottom of the handles.
You see, these rubber bellows are actually very important and you will see them on industrial equipment for a reason. When moving joints on any metal tool get a lot of use (especially outdoors), they get exposed to grass, twigs, debris, rain, wind, extreme temperature fluctuations, etc.. As we all know, water is the biggest destroyer on the planet. The rubber bellows protect the moving joints on the steering levers and maintain the integrity of the steering components for much longer than its peers.
Lastly, the anti-slip foot area is just another common sense detail found on this mower that actually is missing from a lot. Others will have the smooth, finished steel with holes in it. That is great and all for when you want to hose down the mower, but when you actually need to make an awkward step in or out, you will wish you had an anti-slip surface available.
The mowing deck has something called “air induction technology” that actually sucks the grass up so the blades can get the most complete cut. For an analogy of this, imagine your hairdresser pulling your hair out with a comb to cut it evenly. The design of this deck does the same thing with air.
Maintenance and durability
The hydrostatic transmission means that this zero-turn mower is going to be relatively maintenance free. The 3-year bumper to bumper warranty is a good faith pledge from the people at Husqvarna that they stand behind their equipment. My suggestion is always to ride the wheels off of this for the first few years while you are still under warranty.
The durability of this thing is high quality as well. Once you step on and feel the “thud” of your boots on the footplate, you will know that this was constructed with thick steel. The frame and casters as well are pretty dang thick. In some of the other mowers I have tried and reviewed, I read about folks actually cracking the chassis of their mower going over a weird hill or bump. I mean my word people, just put some reinforced steel and wheels on there and avoid losing $3,000+ on a mower.
Cost and value
The Husqvarna Z246 costs about $3,000. All things considered, this is a tremendous value. In fact for the quality, power, and durability, this is probably the best value of any zero-turn mower I reviewed. I absolutely recommend this product.
The official review: The Husqvarna Z246
|Feature||Husqvarna Z246||Comparable residential ZT mower|
|Difficulty to use||Below average difficulty||Average|
|Durability||Above average durability||Average durability|
|Maintenance||Average maintenance||Average maintenance|
|Value||Super high value||Medium value|
|For lots <10,000 sq. ft||Would not fit||Would not fit|
|For lots <1 acre||Probably overkill but is fun and looks cool||Probably overkill but is fun and looks cool|
|For lots >1 acre||Highly recommended||Highly recommended|
Looking for something bigger? Gravely makes some zero turn mowers adored by landscapers.