A man from Danville is using robots for lawn care.
DANVILLE, Pa. — Lawnmowing can either be a relaxing or an annoying task.
David Decoteau of Danville knows that all too well. He had a landscaping company for more than 40 years until four years ago when he got a robotic lawnmower.
Decoteau read about people using “mowbots” in Sweden.
“I lived with that for a year to see if I liked it. Then after proof of concept, I was like, ‘I can do this.’ Then we started doing it in earnest about three years ago,” Decoteau said.
The mowbots work similarly to an indoor Roomba vacuum cleaner. They mow people’s lawns. You can change the height of the blades, and they even make stripes in the yard.
“You don’t notice them. You can run them at night time because they’re silent. You can run them on the weekend without disturbing your neighbor who is sitting outside having coffee,” Decoteau said.
Decoteau now owns his own robotic lawnmower business, Mister Mowbot. He has around 50 of these robots and has customers all over northeastern and central Pennsylvania, including Geisinger.
Decoteau and his customers can control the mowbots through an app.
“Every customer has their own thing, how much they want to be involved. Some people don’t care, they just want their grass cut. They want to come home, and they want it to look good. We can do that. Or it can be they can screw around with it as much as they want,” Decoteau said.
If someone tries to steal one, a siren goes off.
“Then they have a thing called a geofence, if they leave that area, they call themselves in as stolen. They’re useless anyway. If you pick it up and try to steal it without having the code to get in, it won’t do anything. It will just sit there,” Decoteau said.
Decoteau says the mowbots are also better for the environment.
“There’s a couple of states already; California, this year, is outlawing internal combustion engines for lawnmowing because of pollution and whatnot, global warming. That’s another reason I thought I’d get into it,” Decoteau said.
Decoteau recognizes the mowbots aren’t perfect. He says they do not work as well on wet grass. Even so, Decoteau is happy to be involved in what he calls the future of lawnmowing.