Robotic Mowers without Guidewires: Are they better?
You may have heard about the new robotic mowers which are changing the way domestic users mow their lawns. No longer do need guide wires installed but instead their robot mower can map and mow the garden with the use of satellite technology.
But what does this actually mean, what benefits does it bring the user and is it more beneficial than traditional guidewires?
Husqvarna, a world leader in robotics, developed the highly anticipated Husqvarna Automower® NERA models which since release have been growing in popularity.
Previously Husqvarna has utilized EPOS (Exact Positioning Operating System) on their commercial robotic mowers, as well as domestic mowers designed for much larger areas with challenging terrain. But the NERA models, adapted after their most popular domestic Automowers®, are suited more to the average garden.
Why are they changing from guidewires?
As technology has progressed they have adapted their mowers to provide the user with more flexibility and address some of the limitations of guidewire technology.
- Guidewires had to be installed along the entire perimeter of the garden as well as provide a way for the mower to return to the base. This meant that some garden disruption was required during installation.
- Guidewires were prone to damage. Since the wires are not buried deep in the lawn, with them surfacing at some points it means that they are more susceptible to damage from weather, garden activities, and wildlife. Not to mention that you can forget where they are buried and accidentally dig them back up while gardening or damage them while aerating.
- Stay-out zones have to be wired off. Decided you want a new flower bed and don’t want the mower to go over it? Unfortunately, if you have a robotic mower that works on a guidewire, spontaneous decisions like this are a limitation as to ensure the mower stays away from the flowers a guidewire has to be installed surrounding the perimeter.
For some these may not be issues, but for others who require a large amount of flexibility in their garden space it can be a problem. So if these are the limitations of guidewires then how does the introduction of EPOS solve these?
Firstly, what exactly is EPOS technology and how does it work.
To run a robotic mower compatible with EPOS in your garden you require the installation of an EPOS reference station, this acts as a communicator between your robotic and the satellite. These are often placed around the garden (amount required is dependent on the size of the garden) and are above ground, often on a fence or pole for some added height. The mower then has to be programmed to record the perimeter of your garden which you can then see on the Husqvarna App.
This App allows you to adjust the mower from the comfort of your couch, work or wherever you may be. Adjust the mowing schedule, cutting height, route, pattern and create stay out zones all from the app.
What benefits does EPOS bring the user?
EPOS technology directly combats the limitations of guidewires and also brings some additional benefits which were never initially possible.
- Very little garden disruption. The installation process is a lot more technical and requires less hands on installation, meaning that the garden and lawn is minimally disturbed.
- Reduced the risk of damage. Although the EPOS reference stations are at the mercy of the weather and adverse conditions as is such with any outdoors equipment, there is no chance of you or your dog accidently digging it up and damaging it.
- Maintain your lawn, aerate, scarify and dig to your hearts content as virtual boundaries eliminates the risk of guidewire damage altogether.
- Let your spontaneity run free! Not only does the ability to create virtual stay-out zones allow you get that flower bed you dreamt about quickly and easily, it also lets you have more flexibility in the way you use your garden.
- Having a party? You no longer need to sacrifice time on your lawn with your mowing time. Simply create a temporary stay out zone on the app to keep the mower out of the way when entertaining, playing or sunbathing but still have it mowing the other parts of your lawn, so you maintain the perfect cut.
Epos technology directly benefits the user in their everyday working of their robotic mower, making changes and adjustments even easier.