Buying Advice Review of my Honda HRX217HYA

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6,749
As almost all of you know, I have a Honda HRX217HYA mower that I absolutely love. I bought it in July 2012. It is the K3 version of the mower. I am going to give you a detailed review of this mower so when I recommend this mower in the future I can just put a link to this thread.
HRX217HYA.jpg 2.jpg

Let's start out with the engine on this mower. It has the GCV190 engine (190cc's). This engine is super powerful, and is the only mower by Honda with this engine! I own an HRR mower with the 160cc engine and it is no match for the more powerful engine. This mower can power through tall grass, while the HRR would bog down and die. This mower is surprisingly quite, too, which is a relief in residential neighborhoods. It also is very fuel-efficient.
GCV190 engine.jpg

Now...the mower deck. It is made from NeXite, a composite material used in car bumpers. It is super durable, and grass tends not to stick to it. And if it does, it won't make the mower bog down just because there is grass under the deck.
twin blade.jpg

This mower has the VersaMow System with an adjustable Clip Director. This takes the place of a mulch plug. You can move the lever from bagging to mulching or anywhere in between, whatever fits the grass condition. With this mower you can mulch, bag, rear-discharge, or shred leaves. I think the Clip Director is a great feature to the mower. Sometimes after you finish mowing you look and there is some grass behind the Clip Director even if it is in the full mulch position, but you just brush it out...it takes like two seconds.
Clip Director 2.jpg versamow.gif

Now some of the other features of this mower. The controls of this mower are great. It has the Roto-Stop blade-break clutch, which really comes in handy, especially if you bag.
Roto-Stop.jpg cruise control.jpg twin blade 2.jpg
 
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LawnDawg84

Member
Messages
14
We got a couple Honda Push Mowers, nothin as new and impressive as that one, but I will agree they make quality machines.
 

robert@honda

Lawn Addict
Messages
1,791
Just a few days left to get an extra one-year added to the factory warranty...applies to HRR and HRX models:

 

Drewdle

Forum Newbie
Messages
6
As almost all of you know, I have a Honda HRX217HYA mower that I absolutely love. I bought it in July 2012. It is the K3 version of the mower. I am going to give you a detailed review of this mower so when I recommend this mower in the future I can just put a link to this thread.
View attachment 14460 View attachment 14468

Let's start out with the engine on this mower. It has the GCV190 engine (190cc's). This engine is super powerful, and is the only mower by Honda with this engine! I own an HRR mower with the 160cc engine and it is no match for the more powerful engine. This mower can power through tall grass, while the HRR would bog down and die. This mower is surprisingly quite, too, which is a relief in residential neighborhoods. It also is very fuel-efficient.
View attachment 14463

Now...the mower deck. It is made from NeXite, a composite material used in car bumpers. It is super durable, and grass tends not to stick to it. And if it does, it won't make the mower bog down just because there is grass under the deck.
View attachment 14465

This mower has the VersaMow System with an adjustable Clip Director. This takes the place of a mulch plug. You can move the lever from bagging to mulching or anywhere in between, whatever fits the grass condition. With this mower you can mulch, bag, rear-discharge, or shred leaves. I think the Clip Director is a great feature to the mower. Sometimes after you finish mowing you look and there is some grass behind the Clip Director even if it is in the full mulch position, but you just brush it out...it takes like two seconds.
View attachment 14461 View attachment 14467

Now some of the other features of this mower. The controls of this mower are great. It has the Roto-Stop blade-break clutch, which really comes in handy, especially if you bag.
View attachment 14464 View attachment 14462 View attachment 14466
I was looking at one of these, and settled on an HRR. In retrospect, the VersaMow variable bagging may have made my life a bit easier. Out of curiosity, what kind of grass and how high did it have to be in order for you to bog down the GCV160? I was worried about not having "enough" power getting my machine, but I just mowed a 2-3ft mix of everything on the outer edges of a client's property, and aside from having to empty the bag every couple of minutes, I had no issues. :)
 
Messages
6,749
I was looking at one of these, and settled on an HRR. In retrospect, the VersaMow variable bagging may have made my life a bit easier. Out of curiosity, what kind of grass and how high did it have to be in order for you to bog down the GCV160? I was worried about not having "enough" power getting my machine, but I just mowed a 2-3ft mix of everything on the outer edges of a client's property, and aside from having to empty the bag every couple of minutes, I had no issues. :)
My HRR would bog down in grass shorter than 2-3 feet, but I was mulching, not bagging. And it was spring so the grass was thick and lush. :rolleyes:
 

Ragnrok23

Forum Newbie
Messages
9
For anyone looking to buy one, I just bought one at Home Depot for $499 (minus 10% coupon). It's $699 online, but my store didn't have any so I went to order one (in order to use Lowes coupon) and it came up as $499 on the system, so YMMV- but good luck!

Can't wait to pick mine up next week :licking:
 
Messages
6,749
For anyone looking to buy one, I just bought one at Home Depot for $499 (minus 10% coupon). It's $699 online, but my store didn't have any so I went to order one (in order to use Lowes coupon) and it came up as $499 on the system, so YMMV- but good luck!

Can't wait to pick mine up next week :licking:
Nice! Let us know how you like it! :thumbsup:
 

Sp1nn3rman

Forum Newbie
Messages
7
I bought a HRX217VKA in spring of 2011. It has the composite deck also. I was a little wary that it may crack or be damaged by gas spills, but it has proven to be very tough. It has a life time warranty if something does damage it but I believe it will outlast a steel or aluminum deck. I like that grass does not stick to the deck also. The one pull starting is not just a come on, it rarely takes two pulls to start it. All in all it is a great mower.
 

lambs

Forum Newbie
Messages
6
I just bought an HRX with the smartdrive tranny, but was using a 17 year old HRB215 with the plastic deck. The deck never once caused any problems, but the tranny finally gave up the ghost. I am thinking about replacing the transmission and keeping it for a spare mower!

But I so far really like the HRX. Smart Drive takes a little getting used to, but I think it is definitely more efficient than mowing with the 2 speed HRB. I intuitively slow down and then realize I could go faster on the straight sections, so I push it a little harder. It rolls well too without the Smart Drive. Ball bearings at all four corners surely helps.

One surprise today was the HRX belched a big cloud of blue smoke on start up. But it ran great and cuts anything very well. I think the dealer went a little too far on adding that initial shot of engine oil. Will change it in a couple weeks for the first time and see if that helps. My HRB smoked a lot at start up, but it also was 17 years old. It never started on first pull though...usually on 4th pull.
 
Messages
6,749
I just bought an HRX with the smartdrive tranny, but was using a 17 year old HRB215 with the plastic deck. The deck never once caused any problems, but the tranny finally gave up the ghost. I am thinking about replacing the transmission and keeping it for a spare mower!

But I so far really like the HRX. Smart Drive takes a little getting used to, but I think it is definitely more efficient than mowing with the 2 speed HRB. I intuitively slow down and then realize I could go faster on the straight sections, so I push it a little harder. It rolls well too without the Smart Drive. Ball bearings at all four corners surely helps.

One surprise today was the HRX belched a big cloud of blue smoke on start up. But it ran great and cuts anything very well. I think the dealer went a little too far on adding that initial shot of engine oil. Will change it in a couple weeks for the first time and see if that helps. My HRB smoked a lot at start up, but it also was 17 years old. It never started on first pull though...usually on 4th pull.
Continue to keep us posted! :smile:
 

lambs

Forum Newbie
Messages
6
I will try and keep you posted. I did speak to the dealer this week, and they thought it might just need to seat the rings properly. They asked that I keep an eye on it and bring it in if it doesn't improve. They're a great dealer, also servicing my Stihl saws, and I trust them. That's why I bought the mower from them. Heck, it was even at the HD price.
 

Giblet

Member
Messages
32
I have a 20 year old HR215 and when I filled the oil to the full mark on the dip stick, it would bellow out white smoke for the first two minutes until she warmed up. This happened since day one. But then, many years ago, I started filling the oil half way on the dip stick, and haven't seen smoke since. My two cents...
 

GRUMBLEBUM

Forum Newbie
Messages
2
I have owned a Honda HR 21 self drive unit for almost 25 years !!@
other than a few services and then some blade sharpening .. Never a care, never a problem and always starts 1st or at worst 2nd time@!
They just make the BEST MOWERS IN THE WORLD!!
 

pleer

Forum Newbie
Messages
2
I just bought this mower 3 weeks ago and love it. I have many garden beds with bark mulch. Just set the versa system on full bag and go around the edges without any clippings dropped on the mulch bed. When I am off the mulch area,I lean down and switch to full mulch and off in an instant, happily mulching along. The cut is beautiful w/o observable mulch left behind. Once you use the self propel hydrostatic system, you won't want to go back to other types. I can slow down using the clutch going down a gradual bank and pull clamp back to go up the hill never touching the speed adjuster. Works like a dream. This mower is well worth the extra cost just from a convenience stance alone yet alone the quality. I didn't buy the HZA because this mower starts on first pull and doesn't need electric start.
 

Penzzz

Forum Newbie
Messages
5
Do any of you know whether the Honda dealer version of this mower is different than the Home Depot version of this mower?

Thanks!
 

Carscw

Lawn Pro
Messages
6,375
Do any of you know whether the Honda dealer version of this mower is different than the Home Depot version of this mower? Thanks!
Same model built in the same place by the same people.
It is the same.
 
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