Cub Cadet SC100 Review

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Cub Cadet SC100 Review
Bottom Line

The Cub Cadet SC100 is a top choice of experts and owners, offering strong performance and reliable operation. Regardless of the mode -- bagging, mulching, or shooting clippings out the side, reviewers have very few bones to pick with the SC100. Handling is judged to be terrific -- at least for a non-self-propelled mower. The three-year warranty includes a promise that the mower will start up quickly every time -- requiring no more than two pulls. Value is excellent as well -- you can find cheaper mowers, but this Cub Cadet tests out as well or better than gas mowers that cost much more.

ProsTerrific mulching, Efficient bagging, Easy, reliable starting, Good valueConsBest for small lawns, May be difficult to assemble

Breaking it down

Performance

Very good in all regards. The Cub Cadet SC100 performs as well or better than any other gas-powered push mower in its class. It mulches with the best mowers, breaking up blades into tiny clippings with no clumps. Bagging performance is very good as well, and the Cub Cadet does a good job in filling its bag to its capacity without clogging. Cub Cadet gets some catcalls in one survey for being a repair-prone brand, but this model seems to be a happy exception. While user tales of broken or faulty mowers are not unheard of, those are more than offset by the very many owners who share nothing but raves.

Ease of use

Sure starting. One of the hassles with gas mowers that lack electronic starting is the sometimes back-breaking job of yanking the recoil cord time and time … and time again. No so with Cub Cadet. It features an Autochoke SureStart system that adjusts for temperature to provide reliable starting -- so reliable that the Cub Cadet includes a three-year warranty that guarantees that the mower will start with no more than two pulls. Handling is judged to be very good in expert testing. Setting the mower for different cutting heights is a breeze thanks to the dual-lever, six-position adjustment system. Jose Castellanos at MowersDirect.com says "The industrial tread ball-bearing wheels are going to give you years of reliability and helps the mower easily move across uneven terrain with ease."

Safety/noise

Brake shuts off blades. The Cub Cadet SC100 includes a control bar that must be pulled back for the engine to run and the blades to turn. As soon as the bar is released, a brake stops the blades from spinning and shuts the engine off. We didn't find any expert tests that measure the noise of the SC100, but we also didn't spot significant user reviews regarding its noise level. Still, safety experts say hearing protection should be used. 

Our Sources

1. ConsumerReports.org

Cub Cadet SC100 11A-A92J push mower, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Not Dated

The Cub Cadet mower is among the dozens of push mowers rated and ranked by ConsumerReports.org. The mower is tested for performance in various lawn cutting tasks, such as mulching and bagging, and its handling and ease of use are evaluated. An overall rating is assigned that can be compared to other, similar mowers.

2. TheSweetHome.com

The Best Lawnmower, Doug Mahoney, Apr. 13, 2016

Doug Mahoney clearly prefers self-propelled mowers to push models, but says that if your property and/or budget makes a push mower the right choice for you, you won't do much better than the Cub Cadet SC100. His biggest concern is that this mower is so popular that retailers sometimes have a problem keeping it in stock during the peak mowing season.

3. HomeDepot.com

Cub Cadet SC100 21 in. 159cc 3-in-1 Gas Walk-Behind Lawn Mower, Contributors to HomeDepot.com, As of May 2016

The Cub Cadet SC100 is one of the better regarded gas-powered push mowers at HomeDepot.com. It earns a 4.5-star rating and 92 percent of the more than 300 owners whose reviews appear here say that they would recommend it.

4. MowersDirect.com

Cub Cadet SC100 (21") 159cc Push Lawn Mower, Jose Castellanos and Contributors to MowersDirect.com, As of May 2016

Jose Castellanos gives the Cub Cadet SC100 his Recommended label and adds that "mower is this great if you are looking for a push mower with a good reliable engine." That assessment is backed up by nearly 100 mostly very positive user reviews that give it a perfect 5-star rating; 96 percent would recommend it to a friend.