How Do Robotic Lawn Mowers Work? Learn More About These Amazing Gadgets!

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Are robots taking over our life? First, there was the robot vacuum. Now, a robot lawn mower?! Modernization and innovation will only make things more convenient for people.

But how do robotic lawn mowers work? Read on to learn about what could be your new best friend!

How Do Robotic Lawn Mowers Work?

Robotic lawn mowers have a sensor that detects a boundary wire around a lawn and allow it to work within that area. The same sensor will automatically shut off the mower if it hits something and will stop it mowing and move it to a safe place if it detects rain. They tend to use a random movement system that criss crosses a lawn until it has cut all of the grass.

What Is a Robotic Lawn Mower?

A robotic lawn mower is an autonomous robot that can cut grass. Autonomous means it will act independently. 

This type of mower could mow 30,000 square meters of grass when it’s fully charged. 


The first robotic lawn mower was reportedly invented by S. Lawrence Bellinger in 1969. The product was known as the MowBot. 

It’s not as sophisticated as today’s robots, of course. And it was really heavy at 57 kilograms. 

Later on

Husqvarna introduced a solar-powered robotic mower in 1992 and sold it to the market in 1995. 

Over the years, various lawn mower manufactures have introduced their own line of robotic lawn mowers. It has become a popular product especially among really busy people. 

The evolution:

The earlier robotic lawn mowers sold in the market need to follow a boundary. So, users have to put up a border wire to indicate the area where the robot has to mow. 

The robot will mow based on a random pattern. 

The improvements

In 2012, a lawn mapping was developed. What this did was allow the robot to mow in a systematic way rather than doing random patterns. 

By 2019, homeowners didn’t need to put up the border wires anymore. Robotic lawn mowers with a vision-based system were introduced by then. 

Then in 2020, Husqvarna made another upgrade. It introduced the Exact Positioning Operating System, which uses satellite navigation for a more accurate mowing. 

Robotic lawn mower

How Do Robotic Lawn Mowers Work?

They are so smart, and they make our lives easier. But how do robotic lawn mowers work?

Mapping system

We’ve mentioned that Husqvarna introduced an innovation wherein homeowners don’t have to put up a perimeter wire to sort-of tell the robot where it should be mowing. 

However, a lot of the brands still use the border-wire system. 

How does it work?

The mow-bot has a sensor that allows it to detect if it is near the boundary wire. When it sees or feels the wire, it will then turn around to a random direction to continue mowing. 

If there are parts of the lawn that you also don’t want to be mowed, you need to surround that area with a wire as well. 

How smart is it?

It’s pretty smart, actually! You don’t want a certain part of the lawn overmowed, right? Well, the robot also has that mechanism that it will detect if it has already passed through a certain area. 

Nobody wants to have a bald part or an unsightly spot in the lawn. 


This is an essential part of the robotic lawn mower, of course. 

Newer robots have an upgraded sensor, either 360-degree laser or radar, that can detect a coming or standing obstacle. 

It’s safer this way, so it will not bump into a person or a pet. Not that it could really harm you since the robotic lawn mowers are so much lighter and smaller than the original one invented. 

Safety is important

That’s why the system also has a mechanism that allows it to automatically shut off when it hits something. 

Not that robot lawn mowers are mighty threatening but at least we know that it’s really safe. 

Robotic lawn mower from behind on lawn

In some cases

The mower’s sensor will detect rain and will stop mowing. 

Random mowing

In general, autonomous robots have a random-movement system. Have you heard of the robot vacuum? 

The robot vacuum, sometimes referred to as roomba, also has sensors that detect objects and dirt. When it hits something, it will turn around and move to a random direction. 

In the same manner

The robotic lawn mower does the same thing and mows randomly. Eventually, all areas of the lawn that need to be mowed would be completed. 

Grid-mow pattern

Some robot mowers have a planned system that will allow the product to mow in a grid pattern. They basically work in lines. 

The sensors still work the same way wherein the robot will stop when an obstacle is nearby. 


Of course, every robotic lawn mower has blades that will cut the grass. Blades of regular lawn mowers don’t get so much attention. 

But the blades on mower-bots are different. They are smaller but definitely not not less sharp. 

There are two choices:

  • Fixed blades
  • Pivot blades

Mobile app

Still, the more sophisticated products allow you to link the robot mower with an app. This way, you can program the product to work how you want it to. 

This means that you could pre-program a specific path for the mowing and set a schedule for the robot to start working. 

Even better

The app will apprise you of the activity so you can monitor even when you are not in the house. 

The app could also be your very own anti-theft system since you can monitor where your mower currently is. Although, an anti-theft system is really in place with or without the app. 

Anti-theft system

The mow-bot is programmed with a PIN code. This means that if a thief successfully runs away with your robot mower, it would be useless to them. It won’t function without the PIN. 

Power & charging

The mower runs on rechargeable batteries. They could be nickel-metal hydride or lithium-ion. Some are lead-acid, too. 

There is a charging station that will be attached to a power outlet. The mower can also find its charging station by itself. 

View of robotic lawn mower from above with programming buttons visible

Benefits of Robotic Lawn Mowers

There is one very obvious reason why you should have a robotic lawn mower at home. But there are actually more benefits than that. 

There are at least six benefits to buying a mow-bot now!

1. Convenience

Is there any doubt about this? 

It’s pretty obvious why people should have a robot mower. It’s just very convenient! 

Say goodbye to sweating under the sun. You can cool down and let that robot lawn mower do the work. 


You can go leave for work or run some errands and leave the product to do the work on its own. It’s so smart that it can be home alone without you worrying about the havoc it will create. 

It’s programmable, too. You can make it mow at the time you prefer. 

2. No heavy lifting


While regular lawn mowers have wheels, and the electric- and battery-powered ones are quite light, they will never be as light as the robotic lawn mower. 

Sometimes, you need to do some tugging and pushing with the regular lawn mower. With the robot, you don’t have to do anything at all. 

3. Fast

If you mow your lawn, chances are you would have to stop every now and then to rest. Well, the mow-bot doesn’t get tired. Although, it’s battery gets low every now and then. 

However, whether you stop or not, the robot is still faster. Smaller is faster–that’s just a design principle. 

4. No gas necessary

You don’t need to buy gas every now and then to fuel the mower. It only needs a battery and a charging station. 

That’s less expense on your part. You don’t need to change the oil either. Again, that’s an expense that you don’t need here. 

5. Not loud

Sometimes, people have to schedule their mowing because they don’t want to disturb their neighbors. The gas-powered mower is very loud after all. 

People can’t mow too early or too late or the neighbors will be mad. 

With the mow-bot

You can mow anytime you want. 

6. Environmentally friendly

It has zero-emissions. That alone is a great reason to buy the robotic lawn mower. 

Side view of robotic lawn mower


Are you ready to invest in a mow-bot? It’s the most convenient product to own if you have a lawn. The item doesn’t have to wait for you to be available. It can mow the lawn on its own, as long as you program it. 

But how do robotic lawn mowers work? There are mechanisms in place that could make the product work very well. One, there are procedural mechanisms for the mower to be smart enough to know where to go, whether it is moving at a random pace or through a programmed grid. Two, there are sensors to make sure the robot remains within the area to be mowed. 

If you are very busy at work, this should be a great product for you. It’s convenient to use and it’s quiet, too. Lastly, it’s also environmentally-friendly. 

If you want to find out more about these amazing machines take a look at our list of the best lawn mowers of the year. A couple of robotic mowers feature.

Useful Resources

  • Robotic Lawn Mower Market – Business Wire
  • Yes, Tampa Bay, That’s a Roomba-Like Robot Mowing the Lawn – Tampa Bay Times
  • Free Up Your Weekends with a Robot Lawn Mower – Mashable

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