Can You Put a Mulching Blade on Any Mower

Lawnmowers are very essential in any household if you want to keep your yard properly maintained. Your lawnmower will give you a great looking lawn by cutting your grass to a uniformed length, but all that grass has to go somewhere. Mulching is a great and inexpensive way of reducing your work and returning needed nutrients into the soil.

Mulching mowers aren’t cheap so if you already have a standard mower or any other mower that doesn’t mulch, can you put mulching blades? The answer would be yes, you can convert most bag mowers and side-discharge mowers into mulching mowers by installing a mulching conversion kit that includes a mulching blade and a restriction plate to prevent the grass clippings from being discharged through the side or rear chute. However, not all mowers using a mulching blade do a perfect job because they have a low-powered engine or have a bad deck design.

Standard lawnmowers and mulching mowers

Standard lawnmowers are mostly referred to as 2-in-1 mowers because they they’re designed for both bagging and side-discharging. A standard mower uses a standard blade which is designed for cutting short lawns. It a very basic blade with less than perfect cutting and suction abilities and aren’t suitable for mulching. However, mulching mowers are more specialized with a uniquely designed mulching blade for cutting your grass multiple times. They have closed off decks designed to keep the grass clippings under the deck, improve airflow, and repeatedly push the grass clippings into the blades.

Their design creates better airflow under the deck which keeps the grass clippings under the deck and around the blades for longer. This allows the blades to cut the grass into smaller pieces before it falls on your lawn. A good mulching mower has a circular deck with no corners or edges where the grass can get stuck and doesn’t come with a discharge chute.

Mulching blade

If you want to replenish your soil using grass clippings instead of throwing them away, you’ll need to use mulching blades. You’ll find mulching blades in riding or push mowers and they’re multi-purpose blades commonly known as 3-in-1 blades. They have curvier edges that are more distinct with more cutting edges than other blades that allows them to cut your grass into tiny little pieces and discharge them back on your lawn.

Although mulching blades produce less suction, they can still straighten your grass and trim it. Since they have more curves on both the inner and outer surface, they can transfer the trimmed grass to the deck where it’s cut into very small pieces and the inner curves produce air pressure that blows the grass clippings to the ground. This fine grass will provide nutrients that can be easily absorbed into the soil.

How powerful should your lawnmower be?

Not all lawnmowers can be used for mulching because it puts a lot of strain on the engine, so only mowers with at least 5 or more horsepower can be used for mulching. If your lawnmower has less than 4 hp, it might not produce enough torque to cut and mulch your grass clippings properly, so you shouldn’t use it for mulching.

Will mulching blades fit your lawnmower?

Regardless of whether you’re getting a blade replacement or just getting a different type of lawnmower blade, there are a few steps that will help you find the right mulching blade for your mower.

  • Measure the inner diameter and distance between the centers of the two side holes if your blades have any.
  • Measure the length of your blade diagonally from one cutting edge to the other.
  • Measure the width and thickness of the blade at the center.
  • Measure the center hole’s inner diameter and identify the type of center hole because some come in many different shapes and sizes.

All these measurements have to match with the original blades on your mower otherwise you’ll get blades that can’t fit properly. If you’re not sure take your mower’s manual and blades to your local home depot store for help.

Different types of mulching blades

Type of blade


Standard or straight blades

Used on mowers that rotate horizontally

Low lift blades

For side-discharge mowers that mow sandy terrain

High lift blades

Ideal for bagging and cutting long compact grass

Gator blades

Perfect for fertilizing your soil


If you already have a lawnmower, you can buy a mulching kit for your specific make and model of lawnmower which will allow your mower to mulch your grass clippings.


Can you side-discharge with mulching blades?

Yes you can. Side discharge will prevent grass clumps under the deck.

Are mulching blades supposed to be sharp?

Mower blades should be sharp but not very sharp. You should be able to touch the blade without getting cut.

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