If you have a lawn with grass, then you know what a time-consuming chore mowing can be. So it is a great thing that there are now robotic lawn mowers that will do the grass cutting for you when you can’t find the time amidst your busy schedule. The only problem is that the thought of blades spinning underneath without someone operating them can be quite scary.
- How do robot lawn mowers work?
- Are robotic mowers safe?
- Caution is still needed when using a robot mower for mowing safety
Robot lawn mowers are very safe as there are mechanisms to keep them from causing harm to you or your family. Robotic lawn mowers feature a cutting system or technology that is different from the conventional ones, reducing the risk of injury caused by their blades.
This article will discuss how robot lawn mowers work and the safeguards they have in place. It will also compare the safety risks between conventional lawn mowers and robotic lawn mowers. This will help you decide whether getting a robot lawn mower would be a good decision for your family.
How do robot lawn mowers work?
A robot lawn mower would work its way around your lawn, cutting grass without you having to push or operate it. It cuts the grass into fine clippings but does not collect them. Instead, it scatters these clippings to decompose so that the nutrients could go back to the soil.
A lithium-ion battery powers most robot lawn mowers and they come with their own charging station. The high-end models can be scheduled, and they will leave their charging stations without any prompt from you, begin mowing, and then go back to their stations or docks when they are done or when they need to charge again. This type of mower can do the job even if you are not home.
The lower-end mowers cannot charge by themselves, so you will have to carry them to their docks yourself. You will also need to push a button for them to start cutting your grass.
How do robot mowers determine the boundaries of your lawn or grass?
If your lawn has not yet been fenced in, you don’t have to worry about your robot mower running off or going beyond your property. Most robot mowers come with a perimeter wire that you will install into place.
This perimeter wire indicates your lawn’s boundaries or at least the area you want to be mowed, and it will keep your mower inside the edges of this perimeter. In other words, this perimeter wire serves as a dedicated fence and demarcation line for your robot lawn mower.
While most robot mowers move around your lawn in a random pattern, some models map out your lawn and move in straight lines to ensure that they don’t miss a spot.
Robot lawn mowers can also maneuver around flower beds, ponds, swimming pools, and other garden features and obstacles. They have sensors that will help them figure out where to go.
Are robotic mowers safe?
If you have kids and pets, you may worry about robot lawn mowers possibly running over their feet or causing injuries with their propelling blades. But there is no need to because robot lawn mowers are generally safe. These automated grass-cutting machines feature safeguards that would keep you and your family away from danger. They are designed not only to give you convenience but also peace of mind.
Robotic lawn mower: Safety mechanisms
Robot lawn mowers are equipped with a bunch of safety mechanisms.
This is programmed to go around any obstacle and not over it. They come with a collision detection sensor as part of their navigation system, and this sensor prompts them to stop and turn if there’s an obstacle ahead. This sensor can detect walls, trees, bushes, flower beds, even kids and pets before the mower crashes against or comes into contact with them.
Blades tucked well under the mower’s body
There is typically plenty of clearance between the cutting blades and the chassis’s edge to ensure safety while the mower is working. So if your child suddenly places part of his or her foot under the edge of the mower before it could stop, the toes wouldn’t reach the blades because these blades are tucked pretty well underneath, right at the center portion of the mower.
Moreover, a robot lawn mower usually has low clearance. It would be hard to slip a foot under its shell.
Lift and tilt sensors
The lift and tilt sensors signal the lawn mower to automatically shut off its blades once the machine is tipped or picked up. This feature not only works great in the event your kid gets curious and lifts the mower but also as an anti-theft mechanism. Once the wheels leave the ground, an emergency stop is activated, and you can only get it running again by entering a PIN code.
As such, a person who picks up and steals your robot lawn mower while it is running cannot use it without knowing the PIN code.
The cutting systems of robot lawn mowers have pretty weak motors. They only have enough power to cut grass, but not anything thicker and tougher. As such, if your mower’s blades come into contact with a rock, they wouldn’t have enough strength to cut through it and spew shards of stone that could hit your kids or pets.
Robotic lawn mowers vs. conventional mowers: Which one is safer?
If it’s a choice between conventional and robot lawn mowers in terms of safety, the latter scores a lot more points.
There are many reported injuries related to traditional lawn mowers. According to a 2017 study by the Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s Center for Injury Research and Policy, injuries caused by lawn mowers send an average of 13 children to the emergency room every day. This means a total of almost 4800 injured children each year. Traditional lawn mowers can cause severe injuries, including mutilation, especially to the lower limbs in children.
Meanwhile, there are no reports of injuries or ER incidents related to robot lawn mowers.
If safety is a concern and is one of your considerations, picking a robotic lawn mower over a conventional unit is a much wiser decision.
Other robot lawn mower features that make them safer
Robot lawn mowers are also much safer than conventional mowers in other aspects.
For one, robot lawn mowers use battery power and electricity instead of fossil fuel. Many conventional mowers run on gasoline, and there’s bound to be some exhaust and little spills of gasoline on your grass. All these small spills combined would sum up to a significant amount that could contaminate your lawn.
When your kids and dogs play on the grass or lawn, they could get exposed to these harmful spills. Prolonged or repeated exposure could adversely affect their health.
Switching from a conventional mower to a robot lawn mower, therefore, decreases your carbon footprint.
Caution is still needed when using a robot mower for mowing safety
Even if a robot lawn mower has many built-in safety features, you still need to take safety precautions.
It is recommended that you keep your children out of the lawn while your robot mower is doing its job, or at least do not leave them unsupervised.
Your robot lawn mower may automatically stop running if lifted from the ground, but your child may get curious and turn it over to see what’s underneath.
The stationary blades are still sharp to the touch and could still cut their soft fingers.
Robot lawn mowers are safe. They are much safer than conventional lawn mowers, which are considered one of the most dangerous garden equipment. They have many safety features and mechanisms that would keep you, your kids, and your pets from getting injured. Switching from a traditional mower to a robotic one would be a smart decision, as it offers convenience and safety, and peace of mind.