Are Hydrostatic Mowers Better? (Solved & Explained!)

Hydrostatic mowers excel in that they give you greater maneuverability and power, but in a much more compact form. This makes them ideal for small-scale operations. They accelerate quickly and the controls are much more responsive than belt or gear driven options on the market today and this has made them a popular option in the current market.

In the rest of this article, we’ll tell you more about hydrostatic mowers. We’ll compare them to CVT and manual options, tell you a little about how they work, and more. Read on to find out more about hydrostatics – what they do and how they work!

What does hydrostatic drive mean?

When you hear the term ‘hydrostatic drive’, it is referring to a specialized type of transmission used most often in heavy equipment such as tractors, harvesters, trenchers, and construction equipment. This type of transmission employs the use of oil pressure by means of a hydraulic pump in order to power a hydraulic motor.

What is the advantage of hydrostatic transmission?

Hydrostatic transmissions are quite useful, providing variable speed control, dynamic braking, reverse rotation, and also have a high power-to-weight ratio due to the efficiency of their design. They are quite powerful and quick to respond, so care must used when driving a vehicle powered this way as the controls are very sensitive.

Is hydrostatic better than automatic?

While they are more expensive, these transmissions require less maintenance, they last longer, and you get a much smoother ride. They work similar to an automatic transmission, with the difference being that a hydrostatic transmission uses fluid, instead of belts, to send power from the engine to your wheels.

Is hydrostatic better than manual?

That will really depend on your needs. For smaller scale landscaping a hydrostatic is ideal, though for very large plots of land, seeding, and tilling, a manual transmission might well be a better fit. This is because the additional power and the consistency of speed can simplify these tasks when they must be done on a larger scale.  

How efficient is a hydrostatic transmission?

Hydrostatic transmissions are highly efficient. As an example, when working as a motor and as a pump, the axial piston has been shown to have peak values of efficiency, rating between 93 – 96% in testing. This is typical from a quality hydrostatic machine, so this technology is considered to be quite efficient.

What are the disadvantages of hydrostatic drives?

Hydrostatic drives do have some caveats, of course. For one thing, they are considered to be ‘oil guzzlers’, requiring quite a lot of oil to run properly. They are also very responsive when it comes to acceleration and to steering, so if the operator is not careful then this can be a definite problem.

Do hydrostatic transmissions wear out?

Every transmission will wear out eventually. Hydrostatic transmissions incorporate relief valves, however, which tend to make them quite robust – you’d have to really abuse it to reduce the working life. On average, they will last as long as a standard gear transmission, making them a good investment for those who like the perks of hydrostatics.

Which is better CVT or hydrostatic transmission?

CVTs may well replace Hydrostatics in the long run. They are sealed and almost never require maintenance, although at lower speeds they jerk a little bit when you are moving them. That said, you get the same top speeds and they are more cost-effective and there are no hydraulic concerns, motors, or pumps to wear out like in a hydrostatic setup.

How does a hydrostatic gearbox work?

Basically, you will have two hydraulic devices as a part of each setup, with one acting as a motor, and the other employed as a variable displacement pump. This negates the need for a starting clutch and efficiently serves to transmit energy by the means of hydraulic fluid.

How often should you change hydrostatic transmission fluid?        

Provided that there are no issues, hydraulic fluid does not have to be replaced very frequently. On average, it is recommended that you change both the filter and the fluid after 75 hours with your first operations and after that, you only need to change these out with every 400 hours of use.

How do you add oil to a hydrostatic transmission?

Depending on your model, the reservoir will typically be located below or behind the seat of your tractor, and after you have drained the old oil then you will fill the transmission reservoirs by pouring the oil by hand up to the level of the fill line which should be clearly engraved and visible.

Do this for each reservoir and once completed, simply screw the caps closed tightly for each and you are done!

Why do hydrostatic transmissions whine?

You may have noticed that your transmission tends to ‘whine’ a little at times – this is actually quite normal. This sound is caused by air that gets mixed into your hydraulic fluid when you using it at high speeds, which then tends to form bubbles later when you idle the engine, and so the whining that you are hearing is simply the air passing through the hydraulics.  

What oil goes in hydrostatic gearbox?

For your hydrostatic gearbox, if you are using synthetic motor oil then you will want to use a 15w-50, while a 20-w 50 is going to be a better fit with standard oil.

You can look for the reservoirs either under or just behind the seat of your tractor and you’ll want to make sure to drain all of the fluids, followed by filling all of the reservoirs to the provided fill line with the fresh oil.

How long does hydrostatic fluid last?

There are quite a few variables that will decide this, such as the quality of the oil that you are using, potential contamination, and overall operating conditions, but barring any untoward factors then a quality oil should be good for a period of about 6 months on average. Always use quality oil for the best results!