Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

This is a self-propelled gas-powered mower that has variable speed control, and an enhanced cutting system.

The Troy-Bilt TB240 160-cc 21-in self-propelled gas lawn mower with Honda engine has facilities for mulching, side discharging or the use of a rear bag. 11 inch rear wheels provide improved maneuverability and the automatic choke eliminates choking or priming before starting.

This popular model has received good user reviews and is available at an affordable price point from Amazon.

TB240 Specs

Starting system: Recoil w/ AutoChoke starting system
Drive: Front wheel self-propelled
Motor: Honda GCV160 Series OHC
Displacment: 160cc
Fuel Capacity: 1 qt
Oil: 12oz 10W30 (Included)
Cutting Width: 21" TriAction Cutting System
Cutting Height: 6 setings from 1.25" – 3.75"
Discharge Type: 3-in-1, side discharge, mulch or rear bag
Grassbag Capacity: 1.9 bushel
Wheel Size: 8" front, 8 or 11" rear
Handle Style: 3-position height adjust
Extras: Integrated Premium Deck Wash
Warranty: 2-year limited
Shipping Weight: 90 lbs
Shipping Dimensions: 39"(L) x 24"(W) x 17.75"(H)

troy bilt tb240 profile - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

Pros

  • Very Easy to Start
  • Easy to Push and Steer
  • Reliable Honda Engine
  • Quick and Easy Assembly

Cons

  • Rear or All Wheel Drive is better
  • Gap between mower and the bag

Our Verdict

As a self propelled mower, this unit is available at a good price and easily manages the task at hand. The ability to throw grass to the side or into a rear bag provides versatility for both long and short lawns.

Troy-Bilt has been making mowers for more than 60 years and has lots of happy owners. When you combine this with the reliability of a Honda motor, the performance and reliability are as expected.

This mower is best suited to flat or lightly rolling yards with up to 1/2 acre of grass. With 160cc, the motor struggles to drive itself up steeper slopes and you may want to look at other models or be prepared to assist the mower when it comes to working on slopes.

VIEW TB240 ON AMAZON

 

Out of the Box – Troy-Bilt TB240 Reviews

Inside the box, you will find the mower deck, a partially assembled handle, the sideblower, manual, a catcher bag and oil for the Honda engine.

One thing that you need to know when you pull the mower out of the shipping box is the way the handlebars are located within the mower deck.

shippingbar 1 - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)To make the mower fit more easily into the shipping box, the handles are bolted 8 inches lower than they are when the mower is operational.

It’s important that you pull the handles out of the mower body and bolt them into their correct location before assembling the mower.

In this photo, we have highlighted how the handlebars protrude below the mower deck. This photo is taken from underneath the mower.

The video included later within this review clearly shows the handlebar being relocated as part of the unpackaging process.

Other than relocating the handle, the assembly of the mower is fairly straightforward and can easily be carried out by a single person.

Front Wheel Drive

Self-propelled mowers make the job of moving around your lawn a lot easier. When it comes to self-propelled mowers, you can get front, rear and four-wheel drive systems.

In this case, the mower uses a front wheel drive. This pulls the mower along the lawn.

In most cases, a front wheel drive works quite well. However, on steeper slopes or when you have a bag of wet grass in the catcher, the front wheel drive seems less effective than models with a rear or four-wheel drive system.

tb240wheels 626x400 - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

When you look at the mower from the side, you will notice that the rear wheels are significantly larger than the wheels used on the front of the deck. The 11 inch rear wheels provide improved maneuverability and provide additional support for when the bag is full of freshly cut grass (Some models come with 8-inch wheels. You need to check before ordering).

Quick and Easy Start

There is nothing worse than having to pull a starter cord multiple times to get the mower started.

As you will see in the video included later within this review, this mower normally starts on the first pull.

With that said, it may take 3 or 4 pulls to start the mower for the first time after it has been in storage over winter. However, once the mower has started for the new season, the reliable Honda motor reverts back to starting on the first pull for subsequent cuts.

startercord - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

The starter cord is located halfway up the handlebars. This is certainly a lot easier to operate than having to bend down to the motor to pull a cord.

The TB240 has an AutoChoke system that means you won’t need to use a choke lever to start the engine. You also won’t need to prime the engine.

Grass Clipping Options

The TB240 comes with three different grass clipping options including mulching, side throw and using a bag catcher.

Mulching
Like many mowers that include a mulching feature, the TB240 comes with options that allow you to mulch your grass instead of collecting it in a bag or discharging it at the side.

mulchflap - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

The TB240 uses the rear catcher flap and a fitted side cover to enclose the circular cutting deck. By enclosing the deck, the entire base becomes an efficient mulching unit. This also means you won’t need a dedicated mulching plug. Often this is one of the first things to get lost when it’s not in use.

Side throw
Operating the mower in the side discharge mode is very easy. Simply attach the side throw chute below the mulching flap, and you’re ready to go.

sidethrow - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

One of the things we really like about this design is that the side mulching flap can be left on the mower when you are using the side discharge option. You don’t need to unbolt it or put it to one side where it may get lost.

Much like the mulching configuration, the rear flap works to close off the rear of the mower and ensures the cut grass is only discharged out of the side of the unit.

Bag catcher
Your final option is to use the grass catcher bag. This is easily installed by lifting the rear flap and attaching the bag.

The rear bag can hold 1.9 bushels (or 2.3 cubic feet) of grass cuttings before it needs to be emptied. However, you won’t be able to carry a full load if the grass is wet and heavy.

The bag is a good size. It only needs to be emptied 3 or 4 times on a 1-acre lawn. The only annoying thing about the catcher is that there is a built-in gap between the mower and the bag for grass clippings. This allows grass clippings to blow up in your face, especially as the bag fills. This is more of an annoyance than a problem.

Cutting Height Adjustment

Having the ability to independently adjust the height of the front and rear wheel allows you to cut long or short grass without clogging up the mower deck.

heightadjust - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

For example, when you are cutting long grass, we find that having the front slightly higher makes it easier to cut the grass and stops the mower from stalling when it hits thicker clumps of grass.

Once the top of the long grass has been cut, you can readjust the deck to be level and to give a nice clean finish.

TriAction™ Cutting System

Troy-Bilt has developed a cutting system they call "The TriAction® cutting system". It’s included with all of their walk behind mowers.

The TriAction system is designed to give an even cut with a single pass of the mower. The process involves using a Rake Guard, an S-Blade and a Symmetrical Deck.

Rake Guard
Before the grass is cut by the blade, it passes through a rake located on the front of the mower deck.

frontrake - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

The rake is designed to stand the blades of grass upright before they pass under the deck and meet the cutting blade. The blade gives a cleaner cut because they are standing upright and perpendicular to the cutting blade.

S-Blade
The shape of the blade is designed to create additional lift within the mower deck. By keeping the grass upright, a cleaner cut is achieved. The cutting blade also extends to the edge of the housing to create a wider cut.

Symmetrical Deck
A perfectly symmetrical (circular) deck ensures that the grass clipping can circulate around the deck to provide better mulching performance and a clean discharge from the mower. Without any hard edge to get caught on, the smooth surface creates a strong vacuum and enhanced performance of the cutting deck.

Honda Engine

The Honda GCV160 engine is 160cc or 9.8 cu-in. It is a single cylinder cooled engine that runs on 4 stroke gasoline. The overhead cam design means the engine runs relatively quietly and is fairly efficient on its fuel usage.

Honda has been manufacturing this model of engine since 1997 and it is used in a wide range of tools including lawn mowers, pressure washers, forestry equipment, and agricultural equipment.

With this in mind, it comes as no surprise that Troy-Bilt has produced a mower (or two) with Honda engines. However, it is interesting to note that more recently Troy-Bilt has switched from Honda to Briggs and Stratton Engines for their latest models.

Quick Connect Wash

When it comes time to clean the Troy-Bilt TB240, simply connect a hose to the included connection on the rear of the mower deck. After running the engine for a minute or so, the bottom of the deck will be quickly cleaned of grass clippings and dirt.

mowerwash - Troy Bilt TB240 Review (Model 12AVB2AQ711)

The hose connection is a standard size, which can be useful if you misplace the connector supplied with the mower.

Video Tour

The following unboxing video highlights how the handlebars need to be extended when you first get the mower. (Unboxing starts at 36 seconds)

Key Features

  • Powered by a 159cc front wheel drive OHV engine
  • This self-propelled lawn mower is perfect for mowing Small to medium sized yards
  • Offers a very lightweight design with a 21-inch Steel deck
  • Dual-lever Height adjustment for user comfort and side mulch capability
  • Designed with 8×8-inch wheels that offer control while mowing

FAQ

Do Troy-Bilt make a self propel rear wheel drive?

The TB370, TB380 ES, TB380 XP are all Rear Wheel Drive. If you are considering All Wheel drive, have a look at the TB450 XP or the TB490 XP.

How often do you change the oil?

The manual recommends changing the oil every 25 hours of use. In most cases, the best time to change oil is once a year when the main growing season starts in Spring.

What oil for a Troy-Bilt TB240 mower?

The correct oil is 10/30

What is Troy-Bilt XP?

The XP models produced by Troy Bilt come with a 3 year limited warranty. The non-XP models come with a one or two year warranty (Normally two years).

Troy-Bilt TB240 160cc Reviews – What are actual users saying?

Nearly 80% of owners gave the mower 4 or 5 stars.

The majority of owners mention how easily the mower starts and how effective the variable self-propulsion drive works. Like all mowers, negative reviews tend to relate to the mower not starting or the engine leaking oil.

Other Options

If the Troy-Bilt TB240 or Honda engine doesn’t suit your needs, there are several other options available to you.

Troy-Bilt Engines (all 159cc)

Model Features Link
TB120 No Self propel View on Amazon
TB220 Front Wheel Drive, Variable speed View on Amazon
TB270 ES Front Wheel Drive, 4 speeds, Electric Start View on Amazon

Briggs & Stratton Engines

Model Features Link
TB330 Rear Wheel Drive, 4 speeds, 163cc engine View on Amazon
TB370 Rear Wheel Drive, variable speed, 163cc engine View on Amazon
TB380 ES Rear Wheel Drive, variable speed, Electric Start, 163cc engine View on Amazon
TB450 XP 4 Wheel Drive, variable speed, larger grass bag, 175cc engine View on Amazon

Honda Engines

Model Features Link
TB130 XP No Self propel, 163cc engine View on Amazon
TB240 Front Wheel Drive, Variable speed, 163cc engine View on Amazon
TB380 XP Rear Wheel Drive, variable speed, 160cc engine View on Amazon
TB490 XP 4 Wheel Drive, variable speed, larger grass bag, 190cc engine View on Amazon

Troy-Bilt TB240 vs TB130 (A cheaper option)

  • The TB130 is a manual push mower
  • Cheaper option
  • 3 year warranty

Instead of being a drive assisted mower, the TB130 needs to be pushed manually by the operator. Without the manufacturing costs of the automatic drive system, the TB130 is understandably cheaper then the TB240 (and other propelled models).

Both mowers come with a 21-inch deck, height adjustment levers on the front and rear wheels, and a Honda engine. The engine on the TB130 is 3cc larger but doesn’t include the auto choke system included with the TB240.

When it comes to the warranty, the TB130 is in the XP range and comes with a three year warranty instead of the two years provided with the TB240.

Troy-Bilt TB240 vs TB270 (Add electric start)

  • The TB270 has electric start
  • Front wheel drive
  • TB240 has a Honda Engine
  • TB270 has a Troy-Bilt Engine
  • TB280 has a Briggs & Stratton Engine

The TB270 and TB280 added Electric start to the TB240 model.

if you find manually starting a mower engine to be difficult, the electric start will certainly make your life easier. For about $20 extra, it is well worth considering.

Other than the electronic start and the different engines, the features of the three mowers are practically identical.

Troy-Bilt TB240 vs TB330 (Rear wheel drive)

  • The TB330 has rear wheel drive
  • TB240 has a Honda Engine
  • TB340 has a Troy-Bilt Engine
  • TB330 has a Briggs & Stratton Engine

Instead of pulling the mower with the front wheels, the TB330 and TB340 models push the mower with a powerful rear wheel drive system. This makes the mower easier to maneaver when the catch bag starts to get full.

When it comes to the warranty, the TB330 and TB340 both come with a three-year warranty instead of the two years provided with the TB240.

Troy Bilt TB240 Review – The Verdict

The Troy-Bilt TB240 is a good middle of the range mower with a powered front wheel drive.

The Honda motor is very popular and used by a wide range of manufacturers to power all sorts of outdoor equipment. If you don’t like the idea of a Honda motor, Troy-Bilt has comparable models with Briggs and Stratton or Troy-Bilt engines.

When selecting a model, decide if you need electric start and rear, front or all-wheel drive. Obviously, you pay extra for additional features, but the convenience of an electric start and all-wheel drive can’t be overlooked.

The TB240 is best suited to flat or lightly rolling yards with up to 1/2 acre of grass. With 160cc, the motor struggles to drive itself up steeper slopes and you may want to look at other models or be prepared to assist the mower when it comes to working on slopes.

If you are looking for a mower with all the bells and whistles, you should consider the TB330. If cost is an issue, and you’re not requiring a self-propelling mower, the TB130 can also save you a good amount of money.

The mower mulches very nicely and the bag holds more as a result of that. A light pull and it normally starts the first time.

We really like the extra little features like the adjustable speed and the easy to squeeze drive control handle. The deck wash feature really completes the package.

I’m wishing I had a mower like this growing up!

VIEW TB240 ON AMAZON

Image credits: troybilt.com and Amazon.com