This is a review of a 2007 YTH2042 Husqvarna lawn tractor.
Recommend this product?
I was researching a lawn tractor with budget of $2000 or under that included hydrostatic transmission controlled with a foot pedal and a 42-inch deck. I ended buying the YTH2042 tractor for $1499, which I felt was the best bargain for what I wanted.
Husqvarna offers a range of lawn tractors and this is one of their entry-level tractors, yet most of their models appear to share most of the same parts and frame. The differences are in the engines offered and bells and whistles added. Craftsman tractors are made by the same company as Husqvarna: Electrolux. But I found that the Craftsman tractors were not cheaper than an equivalent Husqvarna tractor and it didn't seem that the fit/finish was as nice.
But other people have reported being able to buy Craftsman replacement parts for their Husqvarna tractors. This is nice to know because that means that it will be easy to get replacement parts quickly in case your dealer doesn't have them in stock as Sears is supposedly the largest seller of lawn tractors in the country.
Shopping and Researching:
I had narrowed down my choices to Husqvarna, Craftsman, and John Deere LA series. I quickly ruled out Craftsman because I don't care for the buying experience with Sears and didn't feel like they were more of a bargain than the Husqvarna models.
Then, I looked at the John Deere LA110 for $1650: it had a single cylinder Briggs & Stratton 20HP Intek motor but no cruise control or hour meter. To get those, I would have to upgrade to the LA120 for $1850 with the V-Twin B&S Intek motor.
I settled on a Husqvarna because it seemed like they have good value for the dollar: There were several choices under $1800 that had everything I wanted: The YTH2042 had an identical engine to the John Deere LA110 but also had the cruise control and hour meter, and it was $150 less. Both have 42-inch deck. I briefly considered the Husqvarna YTH2246 (list at $1799) because I thought a V-twin B&S motor would be nice as they supposedly are quieter and smoother. But when I test-drove the V-twin model and the single cyl models, I found that the noise and vibration levels were roughly the same.
Why I Chose the YTH 2042:
1. For $1499, I got the features that I wanted that would have cost much more elsewhere.
2. The quality seems reasonably good for an entry-level tractor with an entry-level price.
3. I opened the manuals on-line and found out that this tractor uses a K46 hydrostatic transmission, which is the same transmission used on the John Deere X300 tractor, which lists for $2800. So I felt that Husqvarna made some effort into putting some good components into this tractor.
4. I love the Husqvarna-orange color.
What this tractor has:
20HP B&S Intek single cylinder engine with pressure lubrication and spin on oil filter, overhead valves, and electronic ignition
tool-less oil change
2.5 gal fuel tank
Hydrostatic drive with foot pedal control (forward and reverse)
42-inch cutting width, deck uses 2 blades, cut height adjustable from 1-1/2 to 4in, 6 increments controlled by hand lever
2 anti-scalp gauge wheels on deck
18x9.5 inch rear tires, 15x6 inch front tires, grease zerks on front wheels
Cast iron front axle
18 inch turning radius
13 inch high back seat with 6 inches of fore and aft sliding adjustment
Allow you to disable ROS so you can mow while backing up
Manual blade engagement (the higher priced models let you engage blades with a push of a button)
11 gauge steel frame, 12 gauge steel deck
Weight 530 lbs
Mulch kit, snow blade, snow thrower, seat cover, front bumper, bagger, plus a variety of tow behind tools such as a cart, aerator, spreader and front mounted de-Thatcher.
Ground engaging attachments such as furrow, plow, and cultivators are not recommended for this tractor.
At Sears, they cross-reference accessories for this model tractor so you can buy craftsman attachments if you want. Also Sears sells a rear gauge wheel kit to convert your deck from 2 anti-scalp gauge wheels to 4 wheels that the more expensive tractors have.
Enough of these Specs, So What do you think about this Tractor????
After the dealer delivered my new tractor, he gave me a little class on how to use this tractor. I really wanted to play with my new toy, so I shooed him away and started cutting my lawn. The grass was really tall because my old Murray 30 inch rear engine rider had bit the dust and didn't have a mower for a while.
After 2 laps around my lawn, the back tire fell off, I noticed that the c-clip was missing, so I called my dealer back and was back within 15 minutes with the parts I needed to get going again. After this mishap, I was back in business.
This tractor is very comfortable with ample padding on the seat. This seat is adjustable which nicely accommodates my 6ft2inch frame with my legs nicely stretched out. I really loved the foot pedal control; it really felt intuitive- like driving a car. The take-off was very smooth compared to some of other tractors I've driven.
This machine is easy to steer and I was very surprised at how tight I could turn. I was able to trim around trees and flowerbeds so that I no longer need my push mower to trim after using this tractor. Also, the 42-inch deck was perfect size for my 1-acre lot. If the deck were any larger, there would have been a lot of spaces between obstacles that I wouldn't have been able to mow between.
The engine starts quickly and is somewhat quiet and smooth compared to my old tractor. It doesn't matter anyways because the spinning blades create such turbulence that its noise would have drowned out a noisier engine. My mother has the Husqvarna YTH1542 lawn tractor with the Kawasaki V-twin that is so quiet that I can hear my wife talking in normal voice, but this list at $2200 which I didn't feel it was worth $700 more. Besides, I don't need to hear my wife anyways ;)
These are high lift blades that create a large vacuum scattering grass out of you side chute over 10 feet!! This will probably work well with a bagger.
What is nice about the foot pedal drive is that you can lean over while trimming around trees and flower beds with both hands on the steering wheel- don't lean too far because the operator-presence switch under the seat will shut off your engine.
Once I leveled my deck (something else the dealer should have done but didn't) and adjusted the gauge wheels, cutting my lawn made it the most beautiful yet. Looks like a golf course.
Any complaints I have are relatively minor, one was the dealer's fault where they didn't set the machine up- level the deck/adjust gauge wheels. Also, a check of the machine should have discovered the missing rear-wheel retention assembly.
Another complaint is that the Husqvarna website is lacking information for researching this product and selecting accessories. The Sears website actually has more information that would be helpful.
There are many independent dealers that sell Husqvarna tractor, also Lowes and Sears sell a limited selection of their tractors.
Husqvarna offers financing, but only through independent dealers. At the time of my purchase, Husqvarna offered a financing special of 12 months with no payments/ no interest that I was able to take advantage of. Financing details are on the Husqvarna web site.
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Amount Paid (US$): 1499