Can You Side Discharge With Mulching Blades? (Solved & Explained!)

Yes, you can side discharge with mulching blades, but choose your blades carefully. Standard mulching blades tend to push down on the grass a little – rather than drawing it up – so there is a little less air circulation power. Blade models such as Copperhead and Gator compensate for this in their design so this doesn’t have to be an issue.

Today we’re going to give you some tips about mulching blades and some important information that you’ll need to know when selecting and using your own. Read on to find out the most commonly asked questions when it comes to mulching and the blades that provide this wonderful option!

Can you still bag with mulching blades?

Yes, mulching blades are often referred to as ‘3 in 1’ blades, in that they are capable of bagging, side discharge, and mulching functionality. Standard blades, by contrast, are ‘2 in 1’ blades – good for bagging and side discharge only. By adding mulching blades or a mulching kit, you are giving your mower one extra function.

How do I mow my lawn with a side discharge?

The trick to mowing with a side discharge mower is to control where the discharged cuttings go. To do this, mow a strip, and then reverse your direction at the end of this strip and mow the next one so that your clippings are deposited in the area that you were mowing before. By doing this, all of the cuttings will be more evenly distributes in the lawn.

Is it better to mulch or side discharge?

That really depends on what you want to do. Side discharge is the fastest option, if you just want to get the mowing done and don’t intend to rake up the cuttings. Mulching, however, is the best option for a healthy lawn. The mulching blades cut the grass clippings finely enough that they are barely visible and they’ll fertilize your yard as they decay!

How do you mow with mulching blades?

Mowing with mulching blades is a piece of cake. You can do bagging or side discharge if you want, but if you want to mulch your grass then you simply mow as normal (perhaps a little bit more slowly, depending on your mower), and let the greatly reduced clippings fall on the ground as you mow. No raking required and you’ll hardly even see those cuttings.

What is the disadvantage of mulching?

The only disadvantage of mulching comes when you wait too long between mowings. When the grass is too tall from this, then you produce substantially more mulch. This thick cover can keep sunlight from getting to the plants below and also provides a home for insects. This is easily avoided by regular lawn maintenance so that your grass isn’t too high when you cut it.

Should you sharpen mulching blades?

Yes. Mulching blades should be sharpened at the same frequency as standard blades. This means that you should sharpen them after every 20 – 25 hours of use. Mulching blades have a longer cutting edge than standard ones, since they do a lot of extra work, so it is vital that you maintain them if you want them to mulch properly.

What does a mulcher attachment do?

A mulching attachment, also known as a mulching kit, is a conversion kit for your push mower or riding mower that allows you to add mulching functionality if your model doesn’t support simply adding the blades. It generally comes with blades and a mulching plate that controls the flow of clippings so that the mulching blades can chop them finely.

What does mulching capability mean?

Mulching capability on a mower means that you can chop grasses up into a much finer form than you would with a standard mower. These smaller pieces of grass are not raked up, but rather left as they fall in the grass and as they decay they will supply nutrients to your lawn for fuller, healthier grass.

What’s the difference between mulching and bagging?

With the bagging functionality, your mower will discharge grass clippings out of the rear or the side of the mower in order to fill a bag that is attached to this aperture.

With mulching, grass is cut as you mow, but rather than going into a bag or shooting out of the side of the mower, the grass is chopped further into smaller pieces that then fall out of the mower and fertilize the lawn.

When should you use a mulching mower?

You should use a mulching mower is you want to fertilize your lawn every time that you are mowing it. There are times to avoid, such as a hot summer when it is too dry or winter and the very beginning of spring, when it is too cold.

Simply put, mulch during growing season and you will see an enormous difference in the vitality and overall health of your lawn.

How do I know if my lawnmower is mulching?

When your mulching blades are working their magic, you should see very fine clippings being deposited on the ground as you go. If you are noticing uneven or ripped-looking cuttings being produced, then it is likely that your blades need to be sharpened.

Can you use high lift blades without bagger?

Yes, you certainly can. High lift blades have extra curvature in their design which maximizes the circulation of air as you mow. Without a bag, the high lift blades will work fine, though they  will expel that grass with appreciably more force than a standard or mulching mower.

What is the difference between high lift and mulching blades?

High lift blades are better suited for mowing tall, dense areas of grass and weeds. They are designed for better circulation of air and are much less likely to choke when tackling dense grasses when compared to other blades. Mulching blades, by contrast, are better for shorter grasses that have been maintained, and allow for fertilizing the lawn as you mow.

Are Gator blades better than mulching blades?

Gator blades are mulching blades with a bit of an upgrade. For instance, their design allows for improved circulation of air over many standard mulching blades, as they tend to draw the grass upwards rather than pushing it down. This gives them mulching capability along with improved function for bagging or side discharge in comparison to standard blades.