Let’s be honest, mowing your lawn is one of the most time-consuming and oftentimes physically commanding tasks for a homeowner. Not to say it is difficult, but rather it generally requires a good amount of effort and it’s often the last way you want to spend your day off.
However, robotic lawnmowers can not only help to ease the stress and workload of cutting your grass, but most of them can even handle high inclines and steep hills. Not only that, but robotic lawnmowers are constantly being worked on, and tend to feature convenient tech settings built to make the entire process much easier.
Here is everything you need to know about robotic lawn mowers for hills, as well as some of the best options currently on the market.
Can Robotic Lawn Mowers Handle Slopes and Hills?
As enticing as it is to buy a robotic lawnmower, one of the most frustrating things that could happen would be to find out that it’s unable to cut a good portion of your lawn due to the slope it’s on. Luckily, even though slopes or hills come in all shapes and sizes, robotic lawnmowers are built with the capability of handling almost all inclines or declines.
That being said, some models will be better than others in terms of the degree to which they can handle, and robotic lawnmowers may not always be best with extremely steep slopes. Follow along below for more on what else you should consider when buying a robotic lawnmower.
What to Consider When Buying a Robotic Lawn Mower
The most important factor to account for when you’re looking to buy a robotic lawnmower is the slope rating of the unit itself. The slope rating of robotic lawnmowers can range dramatically, typically ranging anywhere from 8 to 30 degrees (15-50%).
All you need to do to measure the slope rating of your lawn is calculate the slope like you would with a line on a graph, using stakes, canes, and a tape measure to precisely measure the slope.
It’s important to note that if you have a yard that carries a larger slope or hill, then you will want a robotic lawnmower that is built to handle inclines over 20 degrees. Luckily, there are plenty of options below that offer this ability.
Another very important thing to consider if you’re in the market for a robotic lawnmower to cut grass on hills or slopes is the overall design of the wheels. This is because robotic lawnmowers rely heavily on larger wheels with deep treads since these typically provide the traction needed to remain effective on steep slopes.
This traction is especially important if you deal with high-moisture climates since the grass is going to be wet, and oftentimes soft. Which as a result, will make it more difficult to operate. Also, lawnmower wheels tend to gather a good amount of dirt and grass clippings in the treads of the wheels, which too will reduce the overall effectiveness of the lawnmower. So, you will certainly want to consider the wheel design if you’re in the market for a robotic lawnmower.
Another very important consideration has to be the battery life of the robotic lawnmower. Since this is going to operate entirely robotically, it would be nice to know how long it is going to last before it has to return back to the charging station.
Unfortunately, the lifespan of a battery will depend on numerous conditions, such as varying weather conditions, and the length of time mowing. So, you need to monitor the frequency of use, overcharging, and the surrounding climate.
That being said, most models will last between 2 and 8 hours per session, though this could vary, with a charging time between 30 and 120 minutes.
The good news is that all robotic lawnmowers can operate in temperatures ranging between 5 and 40 degrees celsius, and will last anywhere between 4 and 6 years. Much of this will come down to proper care and maintenance, but so long as you take care of it and are aware of its battery life, it should last for quite a while.
Mower Power and Cutting Height
Next up is the overall power of the mower and the ideal cutting height. With most robotic lawnmowers, you will have the option to cut grass anywhere between 1 and 4 inches, depending on the model. Although, you might need to adjust the blades to accommodate a certain height depending on which model you have. It’s also important to note that the ideal cutting length for mowing your lawn with a robotic lawnmower is between 1 and 1.5 inches.
As for the power of the lawnmower, different blades will be used to power a robotic lawnmower and trim your lawn. They will either have razor blades installed on top of a revolving disc, blades with star-shaped separations, or individually installed fixed blades. Each of these will have varying advantages and disadvantages, but you should always choose a robotic lawnmower that has blades that can be easily exchanged if need be.
As with any household purchase, you certainly want to account for the warranty. However, this is especially the case with robotic lawnmowers since they tend to be on the higher end of the price scale. And if the lawnmower were to ever break down, you would be the one responsible for fixing it.
But if you buy a model that comes with a good warranty, then the manufacturer would assume that responsibility, and ensure that it performs as expected. You will need to pay more upfront, but it can also save you a lot more in the long run on repairs or potential replacements.
There are also a few additional features you should consider if you’re in the market for a robotic lawnmower, one of which is rain sensors. If you’re somebody who lives in a climate that experiences heavy amounts of rain or moisture, then you will want a robotic lawnmower with sensors that can detect this.
Essentially, these models will be able to tell if and when the ground is too wet to cut, and automatically tell the robot to not go out during its scheduled mow time.
Another feature to look for is Bluetooth capability, which will allow you to fully operate your robotic lawnmower using just your smartphone. In fact, there are a number of models that can be entirely controlled using Amazon Alexa’s voice command, or other smart technology.
Creating certain mow times, routes, and enabling push notifications if any issues pop up or once the job’s finished. Some even come with GPS trackers that allow you to follow along with exactly where the lawnmower is at all times, and others offer unique security systems. Which prevents the unit from being unlocked unless you say so.
10 Best Robotic Lawn Mowers for Hills
The top-rated robotic lawn mower for hills is the Husqvarna Automower 430XH Robotic Lawn Mower. First off, this exceptional model utilizes a smart mowing cycle to create a healthy lawn and lift/tilt sensors to increase safety and help prevent collisions. Not only that, but it also features an integrated carry handle, X-line wheel caps, LED headlights, and a rubber bumper.
Plus, it’s incredibly lightweight and capable of handling any complex medium or large-sized yard in less than 145 minutes of working time. The Automower 430XH can navigate separate lawns at 24-degree slopes and is entirely controllable using your smartphone, Amazon Alexa or Google Home devices.
Also, in just a single charge (roughly 50 minutes), you can mow up to 1,430 square feet of any grass type. It’s also worth noting that this model is remarkably eco-friendly as it consumes very little energy, emits zero negative chemicals or toxins, and comes with a noise-reducing motor design for an ultra-quiet drive.
Another fantastic option is the WORX Landroid L WR150 20V Robotic Lawn Mower. As with the previous model, this stunning design is completely operable using the Landroid app from your smartphone. Which measures the lawn, checks the mowing process, updates software and more. Using their patented AIA technology, the Landroid easily navigates around narrow passageways that would typically be too difficult for traditional lawnmowers.
It also comes with a unique rain sensor, so, as soon as any rain is detected, the Lanroid naturally returns to the charger and waits until the lawn is completely dry. Moreover, the Landroid is capable of tackling slopes up to 20-degrees, and you can even auto-schedule it to have the Landroid mow every day, or every other day as desired. Plus, the Landroid can cut up to a ½ acre and comes with a Worx Power Share battery that is compatible with all Worx 20v and 40v tools, outdoor power, and lifestyle products.
3. Ambrogio L250i
Next up is the Ambrogio L250i, which is the best robotic lawn mower for steep slopes. This innovative design comes with a unique navigation system that allows several robots to manage large areas simultaneously, in a smart, integrated fashion. As well as a wickedly fast processor, and an interactive and intuitive touch display that allows you to have full control over the operating system at the touch of your fingers.
Furthermore, using the Ambrogio Remote App, you can connect and interact with the device anytime, or anywhere. Allowing you to monitor the status of the mower, work on specific areas of the lawn, and receive alerts when it’s all finished. In fact, you can even signal it to return to the charging station once it’s done its work.
The Ambrogio L250i also features a Smart Assistant that is compatible with Siri, Google Home and Alexa products, and can tackle slopes up to 45%. Also featured are flex rear wheels for excellent grip on all types of terrain, patented front wheels that move independently from each other, and high-efficiency brushless motors.
4. Honda Miimo
Sliding into our fourth spot is the Honda Miimo. Which utilizes Miimo’s advanced sensors to work together and provide 360-degree awareness to properly handle trees, buildings, flower beds, and even water fixtures with ease.
Moreover, it detects any lifting or tilting motion and is fully customizable to your yard and lifestyle thanks to its innovative, and robotic makeup. It also uses a microcomputer, timer, and sensor that provide an automated, precise, and unattended grass cutting exactly to your liking before automatically returning to its charging station.
Miimo is protected by a unique anti-theft security PIN which prevents unauthorized access and usage. It’s also capable of handling slopes as steel as 25 degrees and is programmed to automatically adapt to the season and growth rate, cutting more or less often based on the condition of the grass. It’s also worth noting that Honda is one of the more reputable brands in terms of robotics and engineering with nearly 70 years in the industry.
Another remarkable solution is the MowRo Robot Lawn Mower RM24. This model is loaded with features including unique bump sensors placed on the front of the mower, child and pet protection placed towards the rear, as well as a protective blade guard. With the MowRo Robot Lawn Mower RM24 you can automatically schedule a task, and let it mow specific areas of your lawn at any time.
Not only that but it’s also a three-blade robotic lawn mower that operates quietly at 65db, and is equipped with a brushless motor that can mow up to ¼ acres.
Most importantly, while most robotic lawn mowers can only handle slopes in and around 20 degrees, this model can incline up to 30 degrees and allows you to cut grass anywhere from 1 to 2.5 inches in height. It also automatically returns to the charging station when the battery is low, and once it senses rain, the blades immediately disengage before again returning to the docking station.
Next up there’s the WORX WR165 Landroid S. Designed for smaller lawns, this model can only cut up to ⅛ acre of lawns, although, it remains one of the more innovative and efficient robotic mowers on the market. Using Landroid’s app, you can connect via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to control the mower, as well as set aside specific mowing times and restrictions.
It also features patented AIA cutting technology that ensures it will pass through narrow paths, unlike traditional lawnmowers. As well as a floating blade disc that automatically lifts the blades giving the Landroid more clearance to navigate uneven terrain without getting stuck.
Plus, the WORX WR165 Landroid S comes with high-efficiency brushless motors that run 50% longer, is 25% more powerful and offer a 10% longer lifespan compared to mowers with brushed motors. Also, the 20V 2.0Ah Power Share battery is compatible with all Worx 20v, 40v and 80v tools, outdoor power, and lifestyle products.
7. Robomow RS630 Battery Powered Robotic Lawn Mower
Another amazing choice would be the Robomow RS630 Battery Powered Robotic Lawn Mower. Thanks to this model’s dual blade and 22” cutting width, users will be able to reliably cut larger yards up to ¾ acres in size.
Not only that but it also inclines up to 20 degrees and can easily be wired to automatically travel to different zones within your yard before returning to the base station to charge fully. Which will take anywhere between 90 and 110 minutes, and allow for an 80 to 100 minute mow time.
Moreover, you can control the Robomow RS620 Battery Powered Robotic Lawn Mower using their innovative Robomow app, which allows you to manage the mower anytime, and anywhere. And you can even operate it via voice command using any Alexa smart home device, allowing you to easily set your mowing area perimeters and weekly mowing schedule.
Plus, the Robomow comes with a rain sensor that sends the mower back to its base station until weather conditions clear up, and operates at a much quieter noise level compared to traditional lawnmowers. It also comes with an anti-theft and safety system that requires a valid code to operate, and automatically shuts off if tilted or picked up.
Next up we have the Husqvarna Autoower 115H. This high-powered robotic lawn mower comes with an integrated carry handle, rugged treads, a 100% waterproof shell, and a lightweight design. It’s also perfect for small-medium-sized yards up to 0.40 acres, can handle slopes anywhere from 17 to 24 degrees, and grass types up to 3.6” tall.
Furthermore, it is also an incredibly eco-friendly robotic mower in that it emits zero negative chemicals or toxins, consumes very little energy, and features a noise-reducing motor design for an ultra-quiet function. Most importantly, it can mow up to 700 square feet in a single charge, working for 60 minutes at a time, and fully charges in just one hour.
Plus, it even returns back to the charging station automatically as soon as the battery starts to run low. Also featured are lift and tilt sensors that help to prevent collisions, while also ensuring that surrounding kids and pets are safe. As well as an innovative Automower Connect app to start, stop or configure your mower exactly to your standards.
It’s also important to note that Husqvarna has been a world leader in robotics for over 25 years, so it’s one of the most reliable brands on the market.
9. Ambrogio L400i
Then there’s the Ambrogio L400i, which is easily one of the more powerful designs on the market. Not only can this elegant Italian design mow up to a ridiculous 5 acres of land (11 hours continuously), but it also features three discs and a deck width of over 33”. It can also cut grass height anywhere from 1 to 3.3 inches and is capable of mowing lawns at 19 degrees.
Moreover, the Ambrogio L400i also features a unique Satellite Dynamic Memory (SDM) system that, based on advanced algorithms, allows the robot to recognize mowed areas. Which then allows the unit to create virtual maps and remember exactly what the working times are for each area of the lawn. Essentially ensuring that the Ambrogio L400i mows the entire lawn in a timely and efficient manner.
10. Robomow RX20 Robotic Lawn Mower
Lastly, we have the Robomow RX20 Robotic Lawn Mower. This incredibly effective model is ideal for smaller lawns, with the capability of mowing up to 1/20 acres of land (200 square meters). The RX20 also featured customizable times as to when the mower will operate, and a floating deck that naturally follows the contours of simple lawns to provide flawless coverage.
Plus, it has GPS/GSM capability that allows you to discover its exact location and receive push notifications on your smartphone whenever the Robomow leaves its designated areas. Not only that, but it even comes with a child safety lock, can handle slopes up to 8 degrees, and can operate, communicate, and be controlled using the Rob connect smartphone app or Amazon Alexa.
With the RX20, you can signal it to leave the charging station once a day for 3 hours at a time before it then automatically returns to the charging station (8 to 10 hours charging time).
Robotic Lawn Mower FAQs
What is the Maximum Slope a Robotic Lawn Mower Can Handle?
The issue with robotic lawnmowers is that they can vary quite a bit, depending on what you need and how much you’re willing to spend. That being said, even the most advanced models will not be able to climb a hill that is steeper than 30 degrees, with most ranging between 20 and 25.
Can You Program Your Robotic Lawn Mower to Avoid Hills?
The only way a robotic lawn mower will be able to avoid hills is if you pre-program the route pattern, or if you place boundary wires in front of the hills beforehand. These wires will ensure that the robotic lawnmower does not go past a certain point, and stays within the boundaries. Luckily, you can also program a robotic lawnmower to avoid trees, garden spots, or other specific problem areas around your lawn.
What Happens if my Robotic Lawn Mower Flips Over?
A common concern with lawnmowers is what happens to them if and when they flip over. Even though this would be rather difficult to do with a traditional or riding lawnmower, it can happen with robotic lawnmowers. Thankfully, most models have lift sensors, meaning that if the lawnmower’s wheels are lifted off the ground, the emergency stop is activated, and the blades stop spinning.
All in all, there is undoubtedly a lot to consider if you’re in the market for a robotic lawnmower, but there’s no question that it’s certainly worth the price tag and the hassle. While your standard lawnmower may be less expensive, robotic lawnmowers are incredibly effective, efficient, and stress-free, making them one of the best household purchases for any homeowner.
Hopefully, after reading today’s guide you have a better idea of what to watch out for and have more information to help you make an educated decision.
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.