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This robot lawn mower is $750 off, and it's so impressive my neighbors come to watch it mow

The Husqvarna Automower 430X can mow your lawn automatically. But for the price, you'll want to take note of a few drawbacks.
Written by Elizabeth Mauder, Video Producer
Husqvarna Automower 430X in the yard.
Beth Mauder/ZDNET

A robot that mows the lawn for you sounds like technology straight out of an early 2000s sci-fi movie, but it's very much a real thing today. I've been testing the Husqvarna Automower 430X over the past year, and it still amazes me how every time I have the robot running, my neighbors would be standing out and watching it cut my grass without me lifting a finger.

Also: The best zero-turn mowers

Sometimes, I'll even sit on my front porch, sip some lemonade, and admire the job I'm not doing. When I tell you technology is incredible, I mean it.

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To start, my family lives on an acre of land that is mostly flat but has an incline in one spot, so the 430X's ability to handle 0.8 acres and slopes up to 45% was a near-perfect fit for me. The setup process took time; my husband and I decided to manually set up the boundary and guide wire along our property. 

Also: The best electric mowers

But if you're willing to pay an $800 installation fee, a Husqvarna rep can help you with all of that instead, which I recommend doing if you have a larger plot of land.

The guide wire can be placed above or below ground, and since this was a temporary test model, I opted for the former. The only problem with the above-ground wiring was that it would occasionally break when weed-eating, causing the robot lawn mower to stall until we could splice the wire back together. If the 430X was going to be a permanent addition to our home, I would absolutely bury the wire to prevent this from happening.

At first, I was skeptical of the Husqvarna Automower 430X given how it navigated in random paths compared to my husband's more consistent riding lawn mower. However, upon returning, I always found my entire lawn cleanly mowed. We never once had to manually mow our lawn this past year. 

Also: Save time mowing your lawn with these riding mowers

The robot achieves this by using the built-in GPS and boundary wire to understand where it has been and where it still needs to go. I scheduled the 430X to mow for three consecutive evenings each week, keeping our yard looking great all season long. More impressively, the robot lawn mower is quiet enough that I was able to run it all night long without disturbing us or our neighbors.

Husqvarna Automower 430X back wheel.

The rubberized wheels give the robot enough grip to maneuver around effortlessly.

Beth Mauder/ZDNET

Maintaining the Husqvarna Automower 430X is simple; you don't have to worry about gas, oil, or anything that a typical lawn mower would warrant. The 430X knows to dock itself once the battery reaches 20% and will resume its mowing job once the battery charges. On average, the robot mows for about two hours before needing to recharge its battery. The charging takes about an hour.

As for blade maintenance, Husqvarna recommends replacing the blades every 4-6 weeks. With a screwdriver only, I was able to easily replace the blades in a matter of minutes. 

Also: Best robot mowers: Smart hands-free lawn care 

Overall, I've been thoroughly impressed with the Husqvarna Automower 430X. It maintains a mowing schedule to keep my grass at the height I set it to, requires very little interference, and has saved me a lot of time and energy. I highly recommend the paid installation service if this is your first robot lawn mower and choosing the trenched boundary wire option to avoid your weedeater accidentally breaking the cabling. 

For $2,500, you're shelling out a similar amount of cash as you would for a decent riding mower, so if you're someone who hates mowing, doesn't have the time for it, or is looking for an alternative to help your elderly parents/grandparents maintain their yard, the 430X is well worth the investment. You can get it for 30% off right now. 

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