Toro 42-inch TimeCutter Zero Turn Mower Review


Toro’s 42-inch TimeCutter Lawn Tractor stands out as a testament to the company’s commitment to providing top-notch lawn care solutions. Designed for efficiency and ease of use, this model caters to both residential and commercial needs, offering a blend of performance, comfort, and durability.

Technical Specs

  • Cutting Deck: 42-inch (107 cm) IronForged® high-strength steel deck with bullnose reinforced leading edge
  • Engine: Toro engine (horsepower varies by model, typically between 16 HP and 22.5 HP)
  • Drive System: Zero-turn technology for maneuverability
  • Speed: Up to 7.0 mph forward ground speed (may vary by model)
  • Cutting Height: Adjustable cutting height (typically with foot pedal or lever, specific range may vary by model)

Key Features of Toro 42-inch TimeCutter Lawn Tractor

Design and Build Quality

Toro’s TimeCutter stands out with its no-frills approach, focusing on essential features that enhance user experience without inflating the cost. The tractor sports a stamped deck, in contrast to the more expensive heavy-duty welded decks, making it suitable for lighter usage. Its dual-blade, 42-inch cutting width ensures a quality cut across your lawn, complemented by a side discharge chute for grass clippings.

Toro lawn mower models

The front of the mower features a step-through design, providing easy access and ample legroom for the operator. The seat, adjustable in its fore-and-aft positioning, although requiring manual adjustment, offers a compromise between comfort and cost-efficiency.

Innovative Features

One of the mower’s distinctive features is the use of magnesium for the caster arms of the front wheels. This choice of material means that in the unfortunate event of a collision with an obstacle, the arms are designed to break or snap, a more cost-effective repair than frame damage. This design choice underscores Toro’s commitment to durability and user convenience.

Toro TimeCutter riding lawnmower

Storage solutions are thoughtfully integrated into the mower’s design, with a cubby beneath the seat for tools or gloves and additional space in the rear fender for larger items. Convenience is further enhanced with a cup holder and a small-item storage space.

Performance and Ease of Use

The TimeCutter boasts a range of features aimed at optimizing performance and user comfort. The deck includes a wash port for easy cleaning, preventing rust and maintaining the mower’s longevity. The right side of the mower houses the control panel, featuring an integrated choke in the throttle control for easy starting, and a hydrostatic transmission control lever with an integrated parking brake for simplicity and ease of use.

Red lawn mower Deck

The mower’s deck height control lever allows for half-inch adjustments, ranging from 1.5 to 4.5 inches, ensuring versatility across various lawn conditions. Moreover, Toro’s smart speed control system offers three ranges for the hydrostatic drive – Trim, Tow, and Mow – catering to different mowing needs and ensuring optimal speed for the task at hand.

Power and Efficiency

Despite its value-oriented positioning, the TimeCutter does not compromise on power. Equipped with a Toro 452cc engine, it delivers at least 22 horsepower, sufficient for tackling tough grass and climbing hills. The inclusion of a standard ball mount hitch adds to its versatility, allowing for towing of lawn trailers or attachments.

Toro 452cc

Maintenance is made straightforward thanks to the compact engine design, which provides easy access to engine components. The 18 x 7.5-inch tires offer ample grip, enhancing the mower’s performance across various terrains.

User Experience

Smart Speed Control

Lawn mower controls

Is a standout for its versatility and user empowerment. With three distinct modes Trim, Tow, and Mow this system allows users to tailor the mower’s performance to the task at hand. Whether it’s carefully navigating through tight spaces, towing equipment, or efficiently covering open lawn areas, the optimal speed setting can be easily selected to suit the specific mowing conditions. This adaptability is crucial not only for efficiency but also for safety, particularly when operating in varied terrain or near potential obstacles. The ability to swiftly adjust the mower’s speed on the fly enhances the overall mowing experience, ensuring that a wide range of lawn care tasks can be completed with ease and precision, thereby offering users a greater sense of control and confidence while operating the mower.

Integrated Parking Brake

person, dressed in blue jeans and brown boots, seated on a red lawnmower with black steering handles

Exemplifies simplicity and convenience in design. By incorporating the parking brake directly into the transmission control levers, Toro has significantly streamlined the mower’s operation. This thoughtful integration not only reduces the mower’s complexity by minimizing the number of separate controls but also eliminates potential confusion for the operator. The straightforward mechanism for engaging and disengaging the brake without the need to fumble for a separate lever greatly enhances the mowing experience. This becomes particularly advantageous for users who find themselves frequently stopping and starting the mower during their lawn care routine, making the overall process more efficient and far less cumbersome.

Convenient Control Panel

Person operating a lawn mower

Exemplifies thoughtful design aimed at enhancing user experience. The layout of the control panel is crafted with the operator’s ease of use in mind, ensuring that all crucial controls are within easy reach and their functions clearly labeled. This intuitive arrangement significantly reduces the learning curve for new users, enabling them to confidently operate the mower with minimal instruction. Adding to this user-centric design is the integration of a choke within the throttle control, which streamlines the start-up process by eliminating the need for a separate choke control. This clever integration simplifies the mower’s operation further, making it more accessible and user-friendly for individuals of all experience levels. The control panel’s design is a testament to Toro’s commitment to providing a seamless and efficient mowing experience.

Table Comparison

FeatureToro 42-inch TimeCutter Zero Turn MowerGreenworks CRZ 426
Power SourceGasolineBattery (Electric)
Engine PowerVaries by model (75746)Equivalent to 13 HP Gas Engine
Cutting Width42 inches42 inches
Drive SystemHydrostatic Zero-TurnElectric
Fuel/Battery CapacityVaries by model (75746)Up to 2 hours of runtime
Deck ConstructionStamped/Welded (75746)Stamped
Maximum SpeedUp to 7-8 mph (75746)Up to 8 mph
Turning RadiusZero-turnZero-turn
Transmission TypeHydrostaticElectric Drive
Comfort FeaturesAdjustable seat, Cup holder, etc.Adjustable seat, Quiet Operation
Safety FeaturesStandard Zero-Turn safety featuresStandard safety features, Low noise
Maintenance FeaturesStandard gas mower maintenanceLow maintenance electric system
Special FeaturesSmart Speed Control (75746), Washout PortFully electric, Eco-friendly
Price RangeMid to high range for residential useMid to high range
Best Used ForResidential lawns, varying terrainResidential, Eco-conscious users


The 42 in. (107 cm) TimeCutter® Zero Turn Mower and the Greenworks CRT 426 both offer a 42-inch cutting width, making them suitable for efficiently handling small to medium-sized lawns. However, their power sources set them apart, with the TimeCutter being gasoline-powered and the CRT 426 being battery-powered.

The TimeCutter might offer more power and potentially longer run times depending on the fuel capacity and engine model, making it suitable for more demanding lawn care tasks and uneven terrains. It may also provide more options in terms of deck construction and specific features depending on the exact model of the TimeCutter in question.

On the other hand, the Greenworks CRT 426 stands out for its eco-friendly operation, with zero emissions and a quieter mowing experience, which can be a significant advantage in residential areas where noise might be a concern. The electric nature of the CRT 426 also means less maintenance compared to a gas mower, as there’s no need for oil changes, fuel refills, or engine maintenance.

Ultimately, the choice between these two mowers will depend on the user’s specific needs, preferences, and environmental considerations. The TimeCutter may be more suited for users with larger or more challenging properties that require the robustness and extended run times of a gas-powered engine. In contrast, the Greenworks CRT 426 would appeal to those looking for a quieter, more environmentally friendly mowing solution for their residential lawn care needs.

Pros and Cons of Toro 42-inch TimeCutter Zero Turn Mower


  • Maneuverability: The zero-turn radius allows for precise and efficient mowing around obstacles and tight spaces.
  • Speed: Offers faster mowing speeds compared to traditional riding mowers, reducing lawn maintenance time.
  • Cut Quality: The 42-inch cutting deck provides a clean and even cut, enhancing lawn appearance.
  • User-Friendly: Features like Smart Speed Control and an intuitive control panel make it accessible to users of all skill levels.
  • Comfort: Adjustable seating and ergonomic controls contribute to a more comfortable mowing experience.


  • Cost: Generally more expensive upfront than standard lawn tractors, which might be a consideration for budget-conscious buyers.
  • Learning Curve: New users may require some time to get accustomed to the zero-turn steering mechanism.
  • Efficiency on Slopes: While great on flat terrains, its performance may be less optimal on steep slopes compared to some other mower types.

Maintenance Tips

  1. Oil Changes: Regular oil changes are essential for maintaining engine health. It’s recommended to check the oil level before each use and change the oil according to the manufacturer’s schedule.
  2. Blade Care: Blades should be kept sharp for a clean cut. They require regular inspection for wear and damage, with sharpening or replacement as needed.
  3. Air Filter Maintenance: The air filter protects the engine from dust and debris. Cleaning or replacing the air filter regularly helps maintain engine performance and longevity.
  4. Deck Cleaning: The mower deck should be cleaned after each use to prevent grass buildup, which can lead to rust and reduced cutting efficiency. The washout port on the TimeCutter facilitates easy deck cleaning.
  5. Tire Pressure: Consistent tire pressure ensures even cuts and optimal mower performance. Tire pressure should be checked regularly.
  6. Battery Care: For models with a battery (for starting the engine), ensure the battery terminals are clean and the battery is charged.
  7. Robust Construction: The TimeCutter features a sturdy frame and deck design, capable of withstanding the rigors of regular lawn maintenance.
  8. Engine Quality: Equipped with high-quality engines, the TimeCutter is built for long-lasting performance and reliability.
  9. Protected Components: Critical components are strategically placed and protected to minimize exposure to damage from debris and the elements.
  10. Quality Control: Toro’s rigorous quality control measures ensure each mower meets high standards of durability and performance before it reaches the customer.


In summary, the Toro 42-inch TimeCutter Zero Turn Mower is an excellent choice for residential lawn care, offering superior maneuverability, speed, and user comfort. Despite a higher initial cost and a slight learning curve, its efficiency and quality of cut provide great value. Ideal for those seeking a fast, precise, and enjoyable mowing experience, it stands out in the residential mower market for its performance and ease of use.


  1. Is the Toro 42-inch TimeCutter suitable for large properties?
    Yes, with its 42-inch cutting deck and efficient zero-turn capability, it’s well-suited for medium to large residential properties, significantly reducing mowing time.
  2. Can beginners easily operate the Toro TimeCutter?
    While there is a learning curve due to its zero-turn steering, features like Smart Speed Control and an intuitive control panel make it more accessible for beginners.
  3. How does the TimeCutter perform on slopes?
    It’s designed for flat to moderately sloped terrain. Performance might vary on steep slopes, so caution and proper safety measures are advised.
  4. What maintenance does the TimeCutter require?
    Regular maintenance includes checking engine oil, air filters, tire pressure, and blade sharpness. The mower also features a washout port for easy deck cleaning.
  5. Is the TimeCutter’s higher price point justified?
    Considering its durability, performance, and time-saving features, many users find the initial investment worthwhile for the long-term benefits it offers.
  6. Can the mower be used for commercial purposes?
    While primarily designed for residential use, its robust design and efficient cutting capabilities make it suitable for light commercial use as well.
  7. Does the TimeCutter come with a warranty?
    Yes, it typically comes with a warranty, but terms can vary, so it’s advisable to check the specific warranty details at the time of purchase.
Joel Cunningham
Joel Cunningham
Forestry Author

I'm Joel Cunningham, an expert in pruning and weed management with over a decade of experience. My skills are rooted in formal training and extensive practice, focusing on advanced pruning techniques and efficient weed control. I'm known for my quality work, precision, and deep understanding of plant health and soil dynamics. My contributions extend to educational initiatives where I share sustainable practices and advice, establishing myself as a reliable and authoritative figure in the gardening community.


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