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Guide to Ditch Bank Mower Maintenance

Knowing how to mow a ditch is an essential aspect of terrain maintenance. And it might feel impossible. Here's the secret — with the right ditch mowing equipment, the challenges all but disappear. Learn about the best practices for ditch mowing and how RC Mowers changes the game.

Ditch Mowing Is No Easy Feat

Ditches are trenches dug along roadways and field edges to collect water. Typically, these ditches guide water to another location for plant irrigation, but they're also helpful for preventing flooding along roadways. Ditches have an important job, but they're not easy to maintain. The biggest challenges in ditch mowing are:

  • Debris: Roadside ditches are debris magnets. With cars driving past at all hours, stones and rocks make their way into ditches all the time. While these spots are designed to collect water, it's also a great spot for collecting fallen branches and even trash from drivers. Add these obstacles to the slope and you have yourself a fun mowing job — and by “fun” we mean not so fun.
  • Rollover risk: As with any slope, ditches have a rollover risk. If you choose to use a riding mower, it's best practice to move up and down the slope, but that might not save you from rolling over on a harsh angle. 
  • Roadway safety: Ditch banks along roadways add a new safety issue to already challenging terrain in the form of traffic. Moving in and out of a ditch might surprise drivers and put you at risk for a collision. You can use as many cones and reflectors for visibility as you want, but a busy road is hard to beat.

Best Practices for Ditch Mowing

Ditch mowing is no walk in the park, but there is a smart way to approach it. Take note of these best practices.

1. Test Your Slope

The number one rule when mowing a slope: test it first. You might think you know how steep your ditch is just by looking at it, but angles are deceiving. Walking the ditch without a mower is usually the first step, so you can get a sense of the angle. 

2. Be Mindful of Rocks and Debris

This tip is a big one for any mowing job, but rocks and debris can be especially common in ditches since they're next to roads. Long grasses and overgrown foliage tend to cover up the stuff that can cause major issues for your mower (and your safety). Our recommendation? Scope the ditch on foot before taking a mower to the spot. Clear out big rocks, sticks, and other debris that might cause a problem.

Another thing to remember is that snakes and other critters might call a ditch home. When it's mowing time, keep an eye out for anything darting through the brush.

3. Use a String Trimmer for Support

It's pretty rare to come across a ditch that has an even pitch across the board. Chances are, your ditch dips at several points, and these spots can seem impossible to get with your mower. When you run into divots and dips, count on your string trimmer. This tool is great for the detail work along roadways and other edges, but it's also your friend for those unexpected pockets in a ditch. 

4. Play on the Safe Side

Mowing ditches isn't easy, and a lot of times it's not safe either. While you might be tempted to tackle the ditch anyway, it's always best to play it safe. Are you looking at the ditch bank thinking that looks too steep? Your gut feeling is probably right, and you should listen to it.

When these dangerous ditches come along, you need a better solution than a push or riding mower — a Remote-Operated Robotic Mower.

Change the Game With the Best Mower for Ditch Banks

Old-school mowers just don't cut it for dangerous terrain. You need something better, safer, and smarter. The Remote-Operated Robotic Mower from RC Mowers is your answer. This badass mower is more than a maintenance tool — it's a problem-solver, time-saver, and people-protector. Say goodbye to safety risks when mowing ditches, and say hello to fast, easy mowing.

ditch mowing

With the R-Series Remote-Operated Robotic Mower, your team can enjoy a long list of benefits. What makes it perfect for mowing ditches?

Get Done Faster and With Less Workers

If you've ever mowed a ditch on a riding mower, you know that slow and steady wins the race. The R-Series mower doesn't need to take its time. Plus, the upgraded rear-discharge deck improves first pass yield by over 100%. Use two or more on large areas, and suddenly your maintenance team is doing double or triple the amount of work it could before.

Overcome the barriers of unsafe terrain and manage to get projects done despite staff shortages — that's what we call a win-win.

Operate From a Safe Location

Between critters and cars, ditches aren't exactly a blast. Our Remote-Operated Robotic Mower uses an intuitive LCD screen and remote for operation. Gone are the days of riding up and down a ditch. This mower handles the job while you tell it where to go from a safe distance — preferably away from traffic.

Be Prepared for Debris

Hunting for stones and other debris in a ditch is a tough job, and you might not find everything. The R-Series mower is prepared for any stones, rocks, or trash it encounters along its route. We've integrated thrown object chain guards to prevent projectiles that could hurt someone. The auto-shutdown function also allows you to stop the blades in seconds if something seems off.

Prevent Rollovers

Our Remote-Operated Robotic Mowers are designed to handle steep angles, especially where a push or riding mower is not a good idea. Rollovers may still happen, but the R-Series is ready to act. The rollover auto-shutdown stops the blades when the mower goes past a comfortable angle and keeps everyone safe in the process. And remember, you're operating this mower at a distance, so you and your crew are already out of harm's way.

Tackle More Jobs

When your team can safely and quickly handle ditches and roadside banks, you suddenly unlock the world of niche revenue. When other teams won't touch challenging terrain, your crew is ready for the job. The R-Series supports safe and efficient mowing in more than just ditches. Use it for:

  • Hillsides and steep slopes
  • Dam and levee embankments
  • Landfill slopes
  • Wetlands and swamps
  • Retention and water treatment ponds
  • Canals
  • Catch basins
  • Containment berms
  • Empty lots
ditch bank mower

Learn More About the Remote-Operated Robotic Mower From RC Mowers

The R-Series Remote-Operated Robotic Mower changes the game. Add this powerful mower to your team to save time, improve job safety, manage staff shortages, and unlock new revenue potential. Explore our mower models and request a demo today to see one in action.