Honda HRR 216 cut quality

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nocsious
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Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby nocsious » May 18th, 2017, 2:40 pm

Anyone found a fix for their Honda mowers leaving rows of uncut grass? I mow the front 1,000 twice anyhow so it's not a big deal in the front yard, but the mower just doesn't cut well. It gets worse as the season progresses and I mow at a taller height. I'm at 3.5" right now and it's now leaving a big swath of uncut grass just inside the right tire. I upped the rpm's to no effect and have tried mowing slower or bagging as an experiment but nothing works.

I mow about 9500 sq ft with this mower so I'm at the point of just selling it and moving onto a zero turn or something. My wife would be upset if I came home with a new lawnmower. At least I convinced her I wasn't crazy though as she though I was just being a perfectionist.

I bought this thing because it has such high rankings in consumer reports... and it's a turd. Actually come to think of it the drive belt has had problems already too.

It's crazy good at mulching is about all I can say about it.
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turf_toes
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby turf_toes » May 18th, 2017, 2:45 pm

Consumer reports reviews are heavily weighted toward affordability.

In other words, it tends to suggest the best product for your money (or bang for your buck). It rarely suggests a product solely on it being best of class.

I love that magazine. But it pays to understand how it arrives at its conclusions.
kbgfarmer
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby kbgfarmer » May 18th, 2017, 10:38 pm

turf_toes wrote:
May 18th, 2017, 2:45 pm
Consumer reports reviews are heavily weighted toward affordability.

In other words, it tends to suggest the best product for your money (or bang for your buck). It rarely suggests a product solely on it being best of class.

I love that magazine. But it pays to understand how it arrives at its conclusions.
I agree completely. Do your own research. Consumer reports is totally about affordability and "friendly for the environment" stuff. It's not about what does the best job. For example when it comes to washing machines it was heavily in favor of water saving machines and had negative reviews about speed Queen washers which imho are the best clothes washers ever but are the traditional agitator style that use a full load of water. Old school imo always trumps new school green crap.
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micvog
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby micvog » May 19th, 2017, 8:45 am

@nocsious - I am in the same situation. As the lawn thickens up it gets worse, and as I raise the height it gets dramatically worse (2.5" is OK-to-good, 3.0" is a problem, and 3.5" is completely unacceptable). I have had the issue both with mulching and bagging.

I have dealt with two different Honda dealers (both of whom happen to sell Toro as well). I have done everything that people have suggested - had the engine speed checked (it was slow from the factory), had the blades sharpened, and when that didn't work, the blades replaced. I have also been more aggressive on the maintenance than recommended by Honda - synthetic oil changes and blades sharpened 3x/year (I am rotating between two sets of blades), spark plug replaced and engine timing checked 1x/year. There has been no discernable improvement.

Both dealers have acknowledged hearing about this problem before, but dismissed it as either my lawn is too thick/going too long between mowings (I ALWAYS follow the 1/3rd rule), and the second as normal behavior. At both dealers I asked about the Toro 20381 and was strongly steered away from it even though they sell it. One suggested I get an HRX but I am reluctant to give Honda PE more of my money.

Right now the mower is on my curb... the first $150 takes it.
nocsious
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby nocsious » May 19th, 2017, 11:47 am

micvog wrote:
May 19th, 2017, 8:45 am
@nocsious - I am in the same situation. As the lawn thickens up it gets worse, and as I raise the height it gets dramatically worse (2.5" is OK-to-good, 3.0" is a problem, and 3.5" is completely unacceptable). I have had the issue both with mulching and bagging.

I have dealt with two different Honda dealers (both of whom happen to sell Toro as well). I have done everything that people have suggested - had the engine speed checked (it was slow from the factory), had the blades sharpened, and when that didn't work, the blades replaced. I have also been more aggressive on the maintenance than recommended by Honda - synthetic oil changes and blades sharpened 3x/year (I am rotating between two sets of blades), spark plug replaced and engine timing checked 1x/year. There has been no discernable improvement.

Both dealers have acknowledged hearing about this problem before, but dismissed it as either my lawn is too thick/going too long between mowings (I ALWAYS follow the 1/3rd rule), and the second as normal behavior. At both dealers I asked about the Toro 20381 and was strongly steered away from it even though they sell it. One suggested I get an HRX but I am reluctant to give Honda PE more of my money.

Right now the mower is on my curb... the first $150 takes it.
This is exactly my situation. I had exactly 1 day to research this purchase about 2 years ago, as I was in the middle of a move. My old mower had a fuel leak when I started it in the the Spring and I had to mow the old yard and close on the new house the next day. So I did the best I could in the short amount of time I had to get the yard mowed.

My turf is very thick in the front yard and the problem is absolutely terrible mowing at 3.5 inches.

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ericgautier
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby ericgautier » May 19th, 2017, 1:13 pm

FWIW, I never had any issues with my Toro 20332 (I've had it for 4 yrs now) and the cut is always amazing. This Toro 20381 seems to be even better. I wouldn't hesitate buying one.
Overfloater
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby Overfloater » May 20th, 2017, 10:16 am

I have an HRX and people have reported the same problems so buying one would not eliminate your problem. I have not had this problem myself.

My only issue is that that the mower has virtually zero vacuum. I can roll over grass that is not erect and it will not get cut leaving a poor cut appearance. In areas where the grass is really thick this is not a problem.

Unfortunately it seems there is no solution to this. Nobody makes a replacement blade because of Honda's double blade setup.

For a $600 mower this is a pretty substantial problem IMO.
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mitten
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby mitten » May 20th, 2017, 10:31 am

I always thought the consensus was that Honda made the best mower (with Toro being comparable)... so this surprises me. I went with a Toro 20381 simply because that's what I grew up using. I also really liked the simplicity of the personal pace control, versus Honda controls.
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andy10917
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby andy10917 » May 20th, 2017, 10:58 am

I think there is a big difference between the HRR-216 and the HRX-217 series, but my exposure to the HRR-216 is limited. I love the HRX-217 machine and think the cut is the best I have ever seen on a mower under $1000. But I think the cut is nowhere near optimal if you rush (walk too fast) through mowing.

Everyone's opinion is different.
Riverpilot
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby Riverpilot » May 21st, 2017, 4:46 pm

I've owned both the HRR-216 and the HRX-217 (current mower).

The HRR cut my lawn better, mulching during summer. It seemed a bit under powered during the spring growth and fall leaf mowing. Hence I sold the HRR to my neighbor and bought the HRX.

The HRX, with the bigger engine, cuts better in the spring growth and fall mowing. But you have to walk slower than the HRR when mulching. I'm not quite sure why that is, but...
Both machines leave stragglers... less the slower you walk. But it gets a bit ridiculous to walk at a snails pace to get a good cut. I've gotten to the point where I double cut my front lawn every time, because of the stragglers.

I'm not sure what my next mower will be. I might go with a John Deere rider, even though my lawn isn't that big. Just because I love JD. :)
krusej23
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Re: Honda HRR 216 cut quality

Postby krusej23 » May 21st, 2017, 10:06 pm

There is already a thread about the crappy cut quality of the hrr216. I've been seeing this problem since I bought this mower and tried all sorts of things to fix it. The lower you mow, the better it mows and doesn't leave the stripe. Obviously that is not a good fix for most of us out there.
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