It’s been nearly four years since I started looking at the world of Robot Lawnmowers and they’ve come a long way since then. But aside from the average family backyard – just how does a Robot Mower cope with a rural property – some serious grass?

I first tested the Worx Landroid in late 2020, and “Edward” as we called him did a great job. Then earlier this year “Garry” the Ecovacs Goat G1 took over our home backyard while “Bradley” the Worx Landroid Vision was in charge at my Father-in-Law’s place.

What I learned from watching our own Landroid over more than three years was this was not a perfect artform. Edward would get stuck, bogged, and even create worn areas along the boundary where it was winding it’s way home each day. But those things were forgiven for the great care and attention the lawn itself got. Lush, Green, and weed free, thanks to constant almost daily trimming.

Ecovacs took it to a new level with no boundary wire – needing to be manually guided around the boundary while in contact with it’s own proprietary beacons around the yard.

But, my brother has 9900 square meters at his property on the outskirts of Young, and with his trusty ride-on mower it’s a decent effort to keep it tidy. Could a robot like the Husqvarna Automower 430X NERA solve that problem?

Well, after 508 hours of run time, driving itself over 750km, the verdict is in – this is a winner.

This is not cheap, You’re looking at $6,898 for the mower and the Husqvarna GPS guidance system. Then add in $350 for the little housing while it charges, and the necessary $600 odd for an experienced local dealer to set it up, it’s going to need to justify itself.

It was up to Alex Rotzler from Rotzler Motocycles and small motor repairs in Boorowa to make the trek to Andrew’s place and make the installation. Alex did all the setup, installation and even walked the mower around the boundary to setup the mowing area, and mark out the no-go zones like trees and obstacles.

The Husqvarna EPOS system is basically a roof-mounted unit that is able to communicate with the mower, keep it on track, and ensure guidance is locked in. I’d say without question this is critical to a large area like this.

“Fred” as he has been named, is actually set to mow 6652m2 – around twice what the manufacture sets it’s range to be, but it’s doing it with ease. Working hard every day to keep that grass trimmed.

Like most robot mowers, it does this with small razer blades, spinning underneath – a really simple system

A boundary is setup on installation, and no go zones easily configured

The rest, is automated.

Where the Automower hits issues

If you speak to my nieces who live nearby and get the call from their father when he’s out of town and “Fred” is stuck, this thing can be frustrating.

Similar to what I’ve experienced with the Worx Landroid, uneven ground can be problematic. Ad that’s not to say a slope – The Husqvarna Automower is having no issues with the overall layout and undulations of the property, its issue is small holes in the ground, about the size of your foot or bigger.

It’s two rear wheels provide “drive” while the front are floating castors basically. While this certainly works, it means you get places where the mower simply can’t back out of, and will be stuck in.

In reality, for a property like this, it’s a bit of work over a few weeks to find and fill all those holes. I think if “Fred” remains here, that’s exactly what will happen.

Bottom line, no Robot mower, none that i’ve ever used, is foolproof, let alone set and forget.

You might go days, or weeks without an issue, but then you’ll find it has approached an area in a certain angle for the first time – and it’s stuck. Move it on, and fix the problem, and in-time it will require less and less human intervention.

Does your Lawn look better with a Husqvarna Automower?

I’ve personally never seen this property look so good.

My brother agrees, and he hasn’t had to sit on the ride-on mower over summer either.

Is the Husqvarna Automower Easy to use?

In his own words,

“Initially after setting up, the boundaries needed adjusting however I was able to do myself. Sometimes it slips in wet grass, because my place has uneven surface if it goes into depression larger than machine can tend to get stuck. However. Most of the time you can reset using app. The system is intuitive. Easy to use. I haven’t had to read any online help. I’m pretty impressed with it.”

Andrew Long

And let me just say, he’s no tech expert, so that’s saying a lot.

Should you buy the Husqvarna Automower?

If you’ve got a large property, sick of the time on the ride-on, wish it would all look a bit better, and have the time to deal with the odd slip or stuck moment – and have the money – this is a no brainer.