With smooth turns and weatherproof exterior, this product reduces the hassle on the owner's end.
Offers a sizable capacity that get towed behind a vehicle without wobbling. Resists damages from rain, window, and sunlight. Rounded edges ensures a clean and polished look. Simple to tuck away and clean after use.
Can be a bit of a hassle to attach and detach.
This tool comes with a hollow base, making it an excellent for spreading water and seeds.
Combination of steel frame and anti-rust coating prevents typical damages from outdoor weather. Internal storage can be filled up with water or sand, depending on user preference. Simply push or pull this device to operate it.
Not as heavy as some users would have preferred.
This is a sturdy model equipped with all the fundamentals needed for reducing yard damage.
Designed with a heavy base to make it easier to use for large yards. Works well for erasing damages, tightening soil, or wiping frost. Scraper bar prevents pebbles and other debris from damaging the product.
May be too heavy for causal use or beginners.
This affordable option is easy to use and is suitable for both open and tight areas.
Constructed with steel, round-edged drum. Has green-sprayed, smooth surface. Designed with U-shaped handle for easy and comfortable use. Easy to assemble and easy to transport. Includes drain plug that fills with water and empties easily.
Some noted product rusts easily.
This is a great choice for larger yards and is designed to remove damage and compress loose dirt, seed, or sod.
Built with durable poly rolling drum with rounded edges. Rustproof and weather-resistant. Has metal scraper bar to help keep out debris. Easy to assemble and fills quickly.
Product is pricier than other options.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Your lawn creates your home’s first impression, and like any introduction, it can set the tone for everything that follows. Whether a lawn is neat and manicured or overgrown and shabby, it can influence how friends, family, neighbors, and even potential buyers react to the property.
If you own property, you already know that a well-kept lawn doesn’t happen by itself. You need a healthy set of tools to get the job done right, and of all the tools necessary to keep your grass in tip-top shape, a lawn roller is among the most useful. A lawn roller is used to even out bumps, ridges, and other uneven surfaces caused by people, animals, freeze/thaw cycles, and erosion. It can also be used to tamp down new grass seed and sod.
A lawn roller consists of a large hollow cylinder, a plug for filling, and a handle or hitch for towing. Like a miniaturized steamroller, it pushes or pulls across your lawn to help smooth things out. Here are some key considerations to keep in mind as you shop.
Lawn rollers come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and designs to fit different lots. The majority of consumer-grade units measure between 24 and 36 inches wide. However, you can find 48-inch or larger models for use on substantial lawns.
As you might imagine, price goes up with size. If your project is on the smaller side, we recommend you shop for a smaller product for a smarter fit at a better value.
Lawn rollers have some heft on their own, often weighing between 50 and 100 pounds when completely empty. They’re meant to be filled with sand or water for more weight, though, as this force is necessary to smooth rough dirt.
The capacity of the drum determines just how effective a lawn roller is at tamping down soil. A typical consumer-grade lawn roller features a 24-inch wide polyurethane drum that holds 28 gallons, or approximately 250 pounds of water. As mentioned, there are 48-inch drums with significantly higher capacities. These can weigh between 400 and 1,000 pounds when filled and are usually made of steel. A customer with a tractor or riding mower is more likely to want one of these.
Another major differentiator is a lawn roller’s pulling style. Some models are designed for hand use and feature basic push/pull handles. Others are meant for more involved jobs; these hitch to either a tractor or riding mower for extra convenience. Some even have options for both, but remember, there’s no need to overspend for features you won’t use.
The last but certainly not least important consideration is construction material. Lawn rollers are subjected to extreme weight and constant weather exposure, making durability a paramount concern. Consumer-grade lawn rollers are made from polyurethane, a tough, rust-resistant plastic that is cost-effective but has the potential to misshape over time if left in the hot sun. High-end lawn rollers are cast from welded steel. These models are considerably heavier and more durable, but they’re more expensive and can rust if left exposed to the elements. For the majority of customers, a “poly roller” is more than capable of getting the job done.
Lawn rollers are relatively uncomplicated, but there are a few features that set different models apart. A common example is a scraper bar. These bars attach to the outer frame and run across the outside of the drum, scraping off excess dirt and debris as the device rolls. Some scraper bars are adjustable or spring-loaded, which helps them avoid getting stuck and impeding mobility.
Baffle bars are all about stability. They run through the center of the main drum, adding structural rigidity to prevent flexing from occurring. You’re more likely to find these on polyurethane rollers than steel ones, as poly materials have a higher chance of losing shape over time. An alternative to a baffle bar is an internal support disc, which rests in the center of the cylinder.
If you’re in the market for a towing lawn roller — that is, one that’s pulled by powered equipment — we strongly suggest buying one with a hitch pin. Hitch pins allow you to secure the roller to a riding mower, tractor, or ATV quickly and simply, often requiring just one hand to operate. These are worth their weight in gold when dealing with equipment that weighs hundreds of pounds, and the quick-connect features are incredibly convenient.
Lawn rollers can be divided into two classes: consumer-grade poly rollers and high-end steel rollers.
Consumer-grade poly rollers typically cost between $100 and $200. This price range encompasses 24-inch units, 36-inch units, hand-operated models, and tow-behind variants. Even the largest and most accessory-packed lawn rollers sit in this price bracket with few exceptions.
High-end steel rollers are marketed toward customers with landscaping businesses or extremely large lots and generally cost between $400 and $500. These durable products are made from tough welded steel and, due to their weight, are generally towed by powered equipment rather than pushed manually. Again, this price range covers almost all the available sizes and features you’ll find in the steel category.
Lawn rollers have many uses, but they shouldn’t be used for regular maintenance. Constant use can compact and stress out your grass, causing anemic blade growth, dead patches, and other problems.
When filling a lawn roller with water, don’t fill it completely full. Instead, fill it about 25% full and test the weight. If it needs a little more water, add it. The goal is to even out your lawn without crushing tender plant life under a weight that could potentially damage or kill it.
Use a lawn roller on moist but not soaking wet soil. If your soil is too saturated with water, the weight of a lawn roller could overly compress the dirt and decrease aeration, which can lead to a plethora of lawn health issues.
Q. How do I use a lawn roller to help establish a new lawn?
A. Grass seed grows best on flat, even ground. A lawn roller can help you obtain a perfectly level lot before planting. Once the seed has been sown, lawn rollers come in handy again, pressing the seeds into the soil below to guarantee proper growth.
Q. How do I use a lawn roller to install sod?
A. Lawn rollers are stellar at leveling ground, eliminating clods of soil, and highlighting low spots to fill on your lot. These are essential tasks to complete before planting sod. After laying the product out, roll over it again to remove air pockets and facilitate proper contact with the soil below. This can help speed up germination.
Q. What other tools do I need for lawn maintenance?
A. The basic lawn toolkit consists of a rake to remove branches and debris, a mower to cut the grass, a sprinkler system to irrigate it, and an edger/trimmer to shape hedges, bushes, and borders. Cultivators, tillers, and spreaders come into play when full renovation is necessary, and tools like lawn rollers are essential when starting from scratch.