Troy-Bilt TB130 XP Walk-Behind Push Gas Lawn Mower Review
The phrase TriAction® just sounds industrious, and that’s exactly what the TB130 XP™ from Troy-Bilt is. What does TriAction mean? Well, it’s a cutting system that boasts a rake bumper that lifts grass upright, as well as a uniquely designed blade that produces a finer mulch. Top that off with a symmetrical 21-inch cutting deck for less clumping, and you’ve got yourself one good mower.
The lightweight, easy-to-assemble TB130 XP push mower is best used on smaller yards that may have unpredictable terrain and obstacles. That TriAction mentioned earlier allows for side discharge, mulching, and rear bagging, whatever you want to do. The machine also comes with a highly reliable Honda® engine with automatic choke release, so there’s no worries about flooding. The nicely made machine comes with a 3-year limited warranty.
Comes with oil, fast-attach deck-wash nozzle, grass catcher, a mulch plug, and a side-discharge chute.
- Powerful 163cc OHV engine with auto choke provides plenty of power through the toughest of grass and weeds
- 21-inch cutting deck is rustproof, efficient, and provides a wide cutting path
- Cutting-edge TriAction cutting system rakes grass upward while cutting, preventing clumpy grass
- Sturdy 7-inch (front) and 11-inch (rear) wheels have solid tread for a grounded feel on rocky terrain.
- Dual-lever, six-position height adjustment
- 24 x 36 x 17 inches
- 72 pounds
There’s just something smooth about the TB130 XP, from the moment you start it up on the first pull to its smooth-running, comparatively quiet engine. The large wheels with nice tread play a part in that smoothness, handling uneven terrain very nicely. If you’ve got flowers or other naturistic areas in your yard, the agile TB130 XP will ease right up to them and give you the close cut you need without accidentally scalping anything.
The TB130 XP cuts grass precisely at the one of six heights you choose and won’t leave grass uncut in spots. The mulching function is outstanding, and all the clippings will go straight to the bag if you choose the bagging option.
Minus self-propulsion, the TB130 XP may be difficult for yards with hills and slopes, though keep in mind it is pretty lightweight and highly maneuverable. On smaller yards, dealing with a few slopes here and there might not be a big deal.
Surprisingly, the hose attachment to clean the mower’s underbelly wasn’t up to snuff. You may have to get under the deck and clean it manually to get the best result.
Ease of Use
After adding oil and gas, the reliable 163cc OHV Honda engine is guaranteed to start on the first pull and is powerful enough to cut through tall grass and nasty, thick weeds. But before you get started, be sure to adjust the handle to suit your size. You’ll like its comfortable grip and the fact that you can stand straight up while mowing, not having to worry about back issues.
As for the bagging option, the cutting system will suck clippings right into the bag, but unfortunately the bag itself is a bit on the small size–approximately 1.5 inches narrower than bags on some Troy-Bilt mowers–so you may have to dump it frequently. This is another reason the TB130 XP is ideal for smaller yards. If you’ve got thick, lush grass, be prepared that you may have to change out the bag more frequently.
Cut Quality & Options
Adjusting the mower to the grass-cutting height you need is simple with dual-lever, six-position height adjustment. Thanks to 3-in-1 mowing options and an innovative cutting system in which the grass is raked upward, clumps are no issue with the TB130 XP. You’ll have a clumpless yard with clippings that are either finely mulched, spewed to the side for fertilization, or bagged up nice and tight. Depending on yard conditions, you’ve also got six heights to choose from with an easy-to-use dual lever. The highest height adjustment may not be suitable for some folks, but generally it’ll slice right through tall grass.
When changing the oil, keep in mind the TB130 XP does not have an oil drain plug; some mowers just don’t. So to change the oil, you’ll need to tip the mower on its side and pour it out of the filler tube. Other maintenance includes:
- Lubricating the pivot points on the blade control once a season with light oil
- Cleaning underside of mower after each use for optimal performance
- Maintaining the oil level
- Servicing the air cleaner after every 25 hours of use
- Cleaning the spark plug and resetting the gap once a season
- Periodically inspecting the blade
Refer to the manual for all maintenance tips and off-season storage suggestions.
The mower’s blade control is operated by the upper handle. Operators can depress and squeeze the blade controller against the handle to mow and release it to stop mowing.
Using the TB130 XP, there’s a sense that it almost sucks up grass and either discharges it, bags it, or mulches it into oblivion. That would be due to the highly efficient, rust-resistant 21-inch cutting deck that offers a TriAction cutting system that has a rake bumper that lifts grass upright. So in a sense, you are indeed vacuuming up your cut clippings when using this machine. Other great features include a hardy engine, durable wheels, an adjustable handle that’s ergonomically made.
Who among us isn’t concerned when plunking down a lot of money for big-ticket items like lawn mowers? But know that for the money you pay for the TB130 XP, you’re getting a really good machine. You may see some plastic parts here and there on this mower, but by and large it’s a heavy-duty machine that should last for many mowing seasons under normal conditions. Try it out and see: When you’re mowing with the TB130 XP, it doesn’t feel shaky or flimsy; there’s a solidness to it. This mower offers great value for what you plunk down on it, and if you’re a budget-conscious person, this might be the mower for you.
- Mulching, bagging, and side discharge
- Adjustable handle
- Easy to start
- Quiet for gas-powered machine
- Lightweight and highly maneuverable
- Not self-propelled
- Hose attachment subpar
- Bag on the small side
- No oil-drain plug on bottom
- Cord starter