Great States 204-14 Review

Hand Reel 14 Inch Push Lawn Mower


Final Score

4.3 / 5 from 8373 users

Great States 204-14 | Tools Official
Great States 204-14 | Tools Official
Great States 204-14 | Tools Official


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We spent 9.2 hours reading reviews from customers and experts. In summary, here's what users think:

11 reasons to buy

  • The Great States 204-14 provides a quality lawn cut that is often described as even and clean, offering your grass a refined and elegant appearance. (44 reviews)

    • “The cut of the grass was refined and elegant - no tearing.”

    • “the grass looks decidedly better than any mower I've ever used”

    • “I was surprised at just how good a job it does at cutting grass. The cut lawn looks good and is even.”

    • “It cuts grass and does it well”

    • “It can't beat the striping and the even cut of my zero turn mower, but it does a pretty darn good job for what I need it for”

    • “It cuts flat blade grass very nicely.”

    • “Cuts in one pass, no need to back up at all.”

    • “Cuts the grass quickly and evenly”

    • “The quality of the cut is noticeable. Very noticeable! I have a smooth even cut across the entire lawn, almost like a visit to the barbershop.”

    • “The yard looked great. The results were also very good.”

  • The mower is characterized by its light weight, making it easy to maneuver and less exhausting to push compared to heavier mowers. (43 reviews)

    • “The reel mower's agility and substantially lighter weight (28lbs) leaves me less exhausted.”

    • “It's easy to maneuver and lightweight”

    • “This mower is easy to push and pull, and doesn't put strain on my troublesome back.”

    • “So easy to push even over bumps and maneuvers quit well.”

    • “We needed a lightweight mower to lift up onto the lawn. This mower is perfect for that.”

    • “lightweight and easy to push”

    • “It's not so heavy and pushing is a breeze.”

    • “Great mower and easy to push.”

    • “I'm a small 65 year old woman and can maneuver this thing with ease. Easier than a gas mower.”

    • “Lightweight and does a great job on cutting lawn”

  • Customers have noted that the assembly process is straightforward and can be completed quickly, often within just a few minutes. (36 reviews)

    • “First, assembly was straight forward and only took a few minutes as other reviewers have mentioned.”

    • “After removing all items out of the protective plastic bags, it took 20 minutes to assemble and worked fine as is.”

    • “Assembled in about 10 minutes.”

    • “Easy to assemble.”

    • “Assembled quick and easy.”

    • “Easy to assemble.”

  • Being human-powered, the mower doesn't require gas or electricity, making it environmentally friendly and cost-effective in terms of ongoing power costs. (33 reviews)

    • “it's really nice to avoid the hassle of getting gas and oil and trying to start a gas mower”

    • “like actually environmentally friendly. It's just a giant pair of human-powered scissors”

    • “I had always been fascinated by them and wanted to try one for many reason, not the least being that it was human powered.”

    • “It cuts grass and does it well with no gas or electricity”

    • “I love that there are no gas fumes”

    • “AND it’s Mother Earth friendly!🌎”

    • “no need gas or electricity, so its always available”

    • “No need for gas, just grab & go.”

    • “I was more than happy to sell the power monster in the garage that has cost me hundreds of dollars in repairs and gasoline over the last few years.”

    • “The not having to deal with having gas and storing it makes up for the effort output.”

  • The Great States 204-14 operates quietly compared to gas-powered mowers, causing minimal disturbance to the user and the surrounding environment. (31 reviews)

    • “Grass flipping up, quiet and no gas fumes.”

    • “LESS NOISY!”

    • “The lawnmower is very quiet, so you don't have to worry about using it early in the morning or late in the evening.”

    • “The quietness of this mower is fantastic. It makes a pleasant noise, as the scissors snip.”

    • “Much quieter than motorized counterparts”

    • “It is quiet. No ear plugs.”

    • “It’s nice not making any noise, so you can do it slightly earlier in the morning or later in the evening without worrying about annoying the neighbors (or yourself).”

    • “This is a great mower & it is very quiet. I’m not bothering the neighbors”

    • “quiet enough to use any time without worry of waking the neighbors”

    • “The mower is so peaceful to use.”

  • Using this reel mower is seen as providing good physical exercise, which can be appealing to those looking to combine lawn care with a workout. (29 reviews)

    • “Pushing the mower isn't very difficult and it's good exercise.”

    • “I suppose it's harder than a self-propelled mower, but I enjoy the exercise”

    • “The mower works better if you go faster, a.k.a. slight jog. Yes, you may look like an idiot, but who cares? You’re getting some exercise, and that's a good thing.”

    • “I recommend it for people that don't mind working on their abs a bit”

    • “It does take a little bit of effort, no more than a non-self propelled power mower, but you definitely have to push the thing.”

    • “I get a good work out using it to mow the yard”

    • “Overall, the result is great, and mowing the lawn is a good weekend exercise.”

    • “getting a bit of exercise (always a good thing) sold me”

    • “The benefit is that I do get a workout.”

    • “It takes a total of two hours to mow my yard so that gives me four 30 minute workouts a week. I expect to lose some weight with this little mower too.”

  • The mower has settings that allow for the adjustment of blade height, offering versatility depending on the desired length of the lawn. (21 reviews)

    • “I set the cutting height to the highest setting (took about 5 minutes but should take less since I now know what to do)”

    • “Set the blades high. This will take care of many of the problems”

    • “I left the mower at the factory height, and it traverses the rough spots of the lawn very well.”

    • “I cut my lawn to 3 inches plus, but the highest setting of 2 3/4 inches is just fine for the area I'm doing. It's the setting I would recommend. It does require an easy adjustment.”

    • “Can adjust the height of the cut”

    • “It has several adjustments for height which is nice. The rollers have three settings and also the front wheels have three height settings.”

  • The mower requires minimal maintenance, such as simple cleaning and occasional blade sharpening, with some customers considering this a benefit over gas-powered alternatives. (17 reviews)

    • “The mower has to be sharpened about once a year using valve grinding compound”

    • “the only maintenance being a regular clean and lube. Maybe 2 minutes each mow?”

    • “relatively low maintenance; easy cleanup”

    • “Easy to sharpen (get yourself a kit)”

    • “Although I've only had it for a short time, I can tell this will not be a tool that never needs maintenance, but an every two year blade sharpening and routine WD-40 treatment will allow this tool to work for more years than I will be alive.”

    • “The least amount of maintenance as possible.”

    • “Love not having to maintain a gas mower”

    • “anything that gets into the blades can very quickly and easily be removed”

    • “The blades need lightly lubed after each use; WD-40 works great”

    • “easy to store and maintain”

  • The Great States 204-14 mower is noted to be a good solution for individuals with back or shoulder issues, as it is easier to push without causing strain. (17 reviews)

    • “This mower is easy to push and pull, and doesn't put strain on my troublesome back.”

    • “My special needs son was afraid to use the electric lawnmower but this is simple for him.”

    • “I'm a small 65 year old woman and can maneuver this thing with ease.”

    • “As a 75 year old lady, it was extremely easy to put my new mower together and now keep my front yard the way I like it”

    • “Definitely my kid will be happy to cut the backyard with this easy tool.”

    • “The reel mower -- so much lighter, easy to back up, & I could even lift up limbs with one hand as I push this under with the other.”

    • “Surprised at how easy it is to push, even at 63.”

    • “Let me start by saying I am a 60 year old woman, 5 foot nothing, with a back issue and a knee issue. And I have about an acre to mow. It is not flat.”

    • “It's not like the old ones that weighed a ton.”

  • The manual operation and design of the mower are considered safer than power mowers, reducing the risk of flying debris and other common injuries associated with motorized blades. (15 reviews)

    • “I do like the fact that when it's jammed you can be sure that something is stuck that you can remove yourself without getting the unit serviced”

    • “If one gets in the stops SUDDENLY”

    • “it would take an acrobatic feat to chop off your finger or toe with this”

    • “Frankly, that small problem is better than having rocks and limbs thrown out the side of a gas mower. (My husband still bears the scar of being hit by a rock out of the gas mower.)”

    • “won’t throw rocks and dust allOver the place”

    • “Hitting a hidden foreign object like a rock or a neighbor kid's baseball does not result in a gut wrenching crash of machinery leading to a probable blade replacement. This mower just stops moving forward until the offending object is removed. You will never have flying projectiles launched from it either.”

    • “reasonably safe around kids playing nearby in the yard compared to a gas powered mower”

    • “The others? Push the reel back with your foot pushes the twig out and you proceed. You don't even have to bend over.”

    • “no loud noise, no dangerous blades, no projectiles hitting your ankles (or face).”

    • “I hoped the reel mower would be safer and it is. > No projectiles > Stop & it stops > No muffler burns or added heat > No tip hazards - Injury, damage or oil in cylinders > Mom will not say, "You'll put your eye out"”

    • “My kids like using this too (supervised)”

    • “It will stop immediately and give you a jolt.”

  • Some users have reported that the mower performs well on wet grass without clumping or jamming, which is not always the case with other types of mowers. (6 reviews)

    • “the blades don't seem to care if the grass is wet”

    • “Also I don’t have to wait all day waiting for the grass to dry . This is a winner.”

    • “this also makes the pushing easier if you miss a week due to rain on the weekend or travel”

    • “This season, we have had nothing but rain and sunshine. I have to cut the grass twice a week. None-the-less, the mower is up-to-the-task.”

    • “It does ok even when it's wet.”

    • “Went over the backyard in dry conditions and it seemed to pick up some slack left after cutting it while wet.”

4 reasons not to buy

  • The Great States 204-14 mower can struggle with long weeds and sticks, often pushing them down rather than cutting them, and can get jammed by small obstacles like rocks. (32 reviews)

    • “If you have a lot of "straw", you will get frustrated; it will not cut this sort of grass. Sticks? Well, if they are small and flat on ground, not an issue. If one gets in the stops SUDDENLY.”

    • “Long weeds with thicker stems, however, are more difficult to cut. It is prone to push them down instead of cutting them.”

    • “Just make sure to remove all sticks in your path since it won't cut through then but get stuck on them.”

    • “Oh...this thing chokes on pinecones big time.”

    • “A longer stick or piece of wood mulch will catch the blades and stop you in your tracks.”

    • “They’ll choke on twigs, pieces of mulch, walnut shell halves the squirrels leave behind, etc.”

    • “Tall, grassy type thin wheat-looking weeds took over my lawn, and unfortunately this type of mower does not cut those (they just bend over and avoid the blades)”

    • “It still gets stuck by small debris or branches sometimes, but it is easy to remove.”

    • “The biggest challenge is that small twigs and sticks will stop the mower.”

    • “The best way to use this is to make sure there are no small twigs or limbs because this is not designed to cut through them. It will stop immediately and give you a jolt.”

  • The mower does not cut grass out to the wheels, which means more trimming is needed around fences and edges. (12 reviews)

    • “One disadvantage compared to a gas mower is that it doesn't cut out to the wheels, so you have to trim more around fences and the like.”

    • “It looks like some models that Fiskars makes have the wheels behind the blades so that the blades cut to the very edge. You’ll understand this gentle complaint once you start using this. If you want to cut up against a garden bed, you need to put the wheel in the garden bed. And if the garden bed is raised a bit, you’re stuck with a lousy cut along that bed.”

    • “When I try to get close to the fence or house, I always have an uncut gap of grass equal to the full width of the wheel, the inner wheel mount/hub and the clearance to the spinning reel.”

    • “if you try to mow like you are using a power mower by tracing the wheel mark you will leave a strip of uncut grass as the reel is totally within the wheels”

    • “And unlike a rotary mower, you'll need to either hand trim or weed wack the edges if you are near stone, because that reel mower can't cut that kind of uneven grass well, or at all.”

    • “You need a weedeater for the edges, tho.”

    • “following the wheel step would leave a trace of uncut grasses”

    • “I have noticed, though, that I will need to use my string trimmer about every time because it doesn't cut as close to the edge as my battery powered mower”

  • The process for adjusting the cutting height of the blades is described as awkward or not very easy by some users. (6 reviews)

    • “Oh, the method for adjust reel / blades is just awkward. But, not too hard.”

    • “Major adjustments require removing the wheel to adjust to the lower tiers of height.”

    • “One last thing that they could have done to make this a better mower is allow a higher cut height. I'm not sure how they could have done that with the back roller setting the height, but I can't imagine that it would have been a terribly difficult engineering problem.”

    • “i did break one of the knobs to move the back wheel up or down for high”

    • “The nuts/bolts to adjust this come off with little effort. Make sure the bolts are in there and those back wheels have no wiggle room, though. They can slip if not put in there correctly and somewhat tightly.”

    • “While not difficult to adjust it is not a simple lever adjustment and requires a 13mm socket and/or a 17mm socket or a pair of plyers.”

  • The foam on the handle tends to shift during use, which can be annoying to some users. One user had to glue the foam handles in place to prevent them from moving. (4 reviews)

    • “My modest complaint is that the handle foam moves around the handle (it doesn't slide upwards though).”

    • “I had to glue on the foam handles, since they kept moving.”

    • “one of my foam handles didn't fit onto the handle all the way and already started to split”

    • “as expected, the cheesy foam handles didn't last long”

Bottom Line

The Great States 204-14 reel mower gives your lawn a neat cut without needing gas or electricity, saving you money and being kind to the environment. It's light and simple to put together, making it a breeze to push around, and it's quiet too. The mower has adjustable blade heights and requires little upkeep. However, it may miss longer weeds and needs extra trimming by edges. Adjusting the blade height can be tough, and the handle foam might shift during use. Great for a green, easy-to-use lawn care option.


BrandGreat States
Cutting Width (in)14 inch
Max Cutting Height1-3/4"
Min Cutting Height1/2"
Power SourceManual
CategoryReel Mowers
Warranty1 Year Warranty
Weight19.5 lbs.

Video Reviews

Special Features

  • Eco-Friendly Operation: This mower is good for the planet because it doesn't need gas or electricity. Just push it, and it cuts the grass.
  • Quiet and Clean Cutting: It's super quiet, so you can mow early or late without bothering the neighbors, and it doesn't make a mess with fumes or oil.
  • Adjustable Cutting Heights: You can change how short it cuts the grass, from really short to a bit longer, just by tweaking the blades' position.
  • Heat-Treated Alloy Steel Blades: The blades are made tough so they stay sharp for a long time. If they ever go dull, you can sharpen them up again.
  • Lightweight and Compact Design: It's not heavy and doesn't take up much space, so it's easy to push around and store in your shed or garage.
  • Superior Maneuverability with 8.5" Polymer Wheels: The wheels are smooth and make it simple to push around, so you can turn easily and cut the grass just where you want.
  • Low Maintenance: This thing doesn't need much looking after, saving you hassle and money compared to other types of mowers.
  • Scissor-Action Cut: It cuts the grass like a pair of scissors, nice and clean, which helps keep your lawn looking healthy.
  • No Fumes or Emissions: There's no smoke or smelly fumes, so it's better for you and the air around your home.
  • Easy to Assemble and Use: Putting it together is a snap, and using it is a breeze, so you won't need to be a rocket scientist to get it working.


  • Q:

    Does this mower cut grass while moving in both forward and backward directions?

  • A:

    This mower is designed to cut grass only when moving forward.

  • Q:

    Where is the Great States 204-14 manufactured?

  • A:

    Although American Lawn Mower and Great States produce some models in the U.S., this particular model is manufactured in China.

  • Q:

    Do push reel mowers effectively cut all types of grass, or are some types more challenging?

  • A:

    Push reel mowers generally handle various grass types well. However, more flimsy weeds might need to be mowed from different directions to ensure they contact the cutting blades effectively.

  • Q:

    Will this mower work well on a sloped and uneven lawn?

  • A:

    This mower is generally capable of handling sloped and uneven lawns effectively.

  • Q:

    How durable is the handle on this mower?

  • A:

    The handle is very durable and well-constructed. It features a foam wrap for added comfort, making it easier and more comfortable to push.

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