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Comments regarding Mantis Tools

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30 positives
9 neutrals
18 negatives


Negative Sumatra01
(4 reviews)
On Jul 11, 2016, Sumatra01 Washingtonville, NY wrote:

As with many other companies that advertise a lot like Mantis does, they make things look so nice, and then it's a disappointment when you actually use it.
The tiller is very underpowered unless you're using it in the softest sandy ground(which we don't have),
it sends even the smallest gravel and twigs flying,
it jerks and bounces around dangerously if you hit a rock or hardpan,
the tines are low-quality metal and bent easily by any stone you many come across,
and the pull-start is the most impossible out of any machine I've ever had or seen. I would not recommend their tillers to anyone.

Negative plafollette
(1 review)
On Jul 16, 2011, plafollette Columbus, OH wrote:

I have had my Mantis 2-cycle tiller since 2007. I have had it in for repairs once. This year I went to start it and could not. I e-mail Mantis and got the standard reply. LOL
I called my repair shop and they agreed with Mantis that it sounded like cylinder varnish and wanted me to bring it it for repairs.
I started from scratch. I bought a gal. of new gasoline, fresh 50:1 oil and filled the Mantis. I could not get it to start. I finally got it to try and run, then flashed the choke several times while throttling the machine. Day one I could only get it going once for five minutes then nothing. Day two I was able to get it to run twice for five minutes each. Of course a lot of flashing the choke. Today I flashed twice and nothing. Closed the choke and it started and ran. I tilled 100 sq. ft. did a cool down run and shut it off.
I was determined that I could get it running myself and not have to take it in for repairs that cost $$$$. Shows that Mantis may sell their tillers but they don't always know how to get them running except repairs and more $$$.
Still all in all I love my Mantis. I bought it after trying to use a Troybilt pony. Mantis does a much better job.

Negative pappywith4
(1 review)
On Mar 12, 2011, pappywith4 Chandler, TX wrote:

I have the 2 cycle tiller and for the first 3 years no complaints on starting or running .But now in the 4th year I was tilling my garden and it was working like usual but then it started bogging down so I clean the air filter and still bogs down. I took the filter off completely and still bogging down. It will run wide open when off the ground but touch soil and down it goes, no power. sounds like a chain saw with the chain stuck!
I took off the muffler and the screen was clear, checked the grease no problem there! The gas I was using was fresh and some of the same gas that was being used before, infact I put 2 other tanks full of gas prior to this thing bogging down!
whats up??? The plug is fine but I changed it out any way!

Negative tlb10
(1 review)
On Nov 8, 2010, tlb10 london,
Canada wrote:

Bought a 2 stroke Mantis Tiller Jan 2009 and have used it 4 times (about 3 hours overall) with no trouble. Today I hit a foot long piece of duct tape which stopped the tynes dead. I cleared it with no great effort but now the tynes won't turn at all and I'm stumped. I bought the thing for it's simplicity and durability and I seem to have been wrong on both these points. It'll probably sit in the shed till I die or we move.

Negative khdetw
(1 review)
On Oct 24, 2010, khdetw Hampton, VA wrote:

I have recently received a used 7222 Model 401702 tiller. It was stored with gas in the tank so, as apparently is typical from reading these posts, it won't start without some overhauling. Also it's missing the wire that goes to the start/stop switch. I will fix these things. It would be much easier with a real service manual which apparently Mantis does not make available (I did download the users manual from The lack of a service manual coupled with chronic failure to start is the reason for the negative rating. I emailed Mantis regarding the service manual and will update the rating if there's a reply.

Negative Averagejoe71
(1 review)
On Apr 22, 2009, Averagejoe71 Barrington, IL wrote:

When the Mantis tiller is working its awesome, but my negative experience with starting it and keeping it running is similar to many on this post. I have never had problems with other 2-cycle engines. My $100 Sears trimmer uses the same gas (different oil mixture) and starts every time on the second pull (after choke). The Mantis is like a helicopter....plan to spend 2hrs maintaining it for every 1 hr you use it. Its not for a gardener, its for someone who enjoys tinkering with engines.

Negative manuretea
(11 reviews)
On Oct 18, 2008, manuretea Medina, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:

Thirteen years ago I purchased the 2-cycle Mantis. It was a workhorse. My neighbor borrowed it while I was at work and an elderly dying neighbor borrowed it from her and tuned it to his liking. It never was the same. Last year I purchased a 4 cycle Honda engine Mantis. I've used it three hours tops. It runs about 30 seconds and cuts out. The two local sales stores won't touch it. It should be warranty work. I have called Mantis several times and they won't help either because I didn't purchase it from their factory store. The least they could do is provide a service manual so I can trouble shoot. Huge waste of $450.

Negative medinac
(1 review)
On Sep 2, 2008, medinac Bensenville, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

I had to decide between neutral and negative and decided on negative. Not that everything about the Mantis is negative, because it is a great little lightweight machine that performs well for small home gardening jobs. We have a Mantis 2 stroke. I have always been able to do my own tilling with it without my husband's help and actually enjoy using it. Even my 13 yr. old son could use it. It performed great for about 2 seasons, with me starting it myself. After that I had to have my husband start it because I just couldn't get it going. It got progressively worse to the point it just wouldn't start no matter the adjustments etc. made. We finally took it to a Mantis authorized repair shop. It worked the season after the repair and now it's the same old thing again. My husband does everything the manual says to do as far as mixing the gas and maintenance. We're not spending the money for another repair. I debated buying the Mantis 4 stroke with the Honda engine but I'm a little nervous about buying another Mantis. So, we've decided to just buy a new Honda FG110 4 stroke locally direct from Honda who can do their own repairs if needed (hopefully none will be necessary)! No more mixing gas, horay! And, it's only 5 more pounds so I should be able to start and use it myself.

Negative purpleguy
(1 review)
On Oct 3, 2007, purpleguy Lombard, IL wrote:

I've had my Mantis Tiller 5 years. It did OK the first year as I tilled all of our flower beds and the edger did OK, too. After being stored during the winter - per instructions - it wouldn't start the following Spring. I was finally able to get it to go, but it would constantly die out. So I tilled and tilled and noticed that it took twice as long the second year as the first. I firmly believe what a fellow garden club member told me and that was that the engines used, even though made by Briggs & Stratton, are too small. There is no good reason to rebuild the carburetor every year and the engine every three to four. There are better things to do with your time especially after forking out $400 bucks for a machine that is supposed to be trouble free. I had a similar problem with a small gas Craftsman gas edger I bought. That was rebuilt after six months under warranty. That was the first piece of c r a p to get dumped. With the Mantis, I drained the gas and personally dropped IT into the garbage truck last Monday. My son bought a small Honda tiller four years ago. It has started year after year after being stored in his garage WITHOUT using Sta-Bil. I used it this year after cussing out the Mantis. The customer service people are OK, but all they offer is what is in the manual - verbatum. They're there because they have to be. Out of warranty? Oh well.

Negative coldje
(1 review)
On Jun 15, 2007, coldje Orem, UT wrote:

We've had our Mantis tiller for 10 years. I'll bet in all of that time, we've been able to actually use it 6 times--and 3 of those were cursing at trying to start it. Now the compression is about 33 psi. Customer Service says it is supposed to be 120 psi. With such little use, how can the engine be worn out?

I've had the carb rebuilt before a few times. I read on another forum that the carb manufacturer recommends an annual rebuild. If I get get a good used engine off eBay, I might keep it, else I will junk it and buy another brand.

Overall, I'm disappointed. We really didn't get the use of the tiller, especially when it was only ever used a few times in the Spring. When the company moves to offering its product with a Honda engine in order to stay competitive, that's a consideration.

Negative tireman
(1 review)
On Apr 8, 2007, tireman Ravenna, OH wrote:

My wife is the primary user of our Mantis tiller and she loves it. The issue I have, since I am the one doing repairs and mantainance on it, is the problem with obtaining parts.

I have part numbers from the manual but:
1. Mantis doesn't have any way to order the parts on the web
2. Their search engine doesn't even respond when you enter "parts" so even having p/n is of no value.
3. Even when you send email with the part information as a request for pricing they don't answer.

It appears that they are only interested in selling new units and once you have made the purchase there is no such thing as Customer Support.

Negative BWWalker
(1 review)
On Jun 7, 2006, BWWalker Indianapolis, IN wrote:

If you are considering a Mantis Garden Tiller that uses a two-stroke engine, please be prepared to go to school for mechanical engineering to perform the maintenance the Mantis requires to keep operating. This garden tool gives me bad dreams when I know I have to use it. If maintenance is performed to the letter, it may start up and run for you. It may NOT. The customer service people at Mantis only know how to tell you to take it to an authorized dealer, or send it back to Mantis and pay the freight. The two-stroke fuel and a finicky carburetor is the primary culprit to keeping it running. There are other issues, but the fuel and carburetor is the worst. Gasoline must be fresh ( I have never seen an expiration date on Gasoline) or it will gum up the carburetor and will not start. Don't even THINK about adjusting the carburetor as it takes an expert to do this. The owner's manual is very ambiguous about this. This tiller is the same as the Echo version for your information. If you can keep it running, it's a great garden tool. I gave up on mine and gave it to my Son-In-Law who is a mechanical engineer by profession and he also agreed ithat maintenance will cause you heart aches.

Negative Joespliggadottc
(1 review)
On Jun 6, 2006, Joespliggadottc Indianapolis, IN wrote:

The Mantis tiller is one great garden tool if you are a mechanical engineer specializing in gas engines. The Mantis works well, when it runs. It is a maintenance nightmare to keep it operating. For one, it is extremely tempermental. You can't use gasoline older than a few weeks old ( how many gardeners keep gasoline in the shed for weeks & months? see what I mean) You have to "drain" the fuel tank after each use and completely "dry" out the carburetor if you don't use it for a few days. The fuel system clogs up if it sits for more than a week. Trying to read the owner's manual to keep up with routine maintenance ( the Mantis is ANYTHING but routine) requires a PHd in physics and mechanican engineering. On the plus side, IF you can keep the Mantis running, it's a great tool.

Negative iwonder
(1 review)
On May 1, 2006, iwonder Truro,
Canada wrote:

Purchased tiller on line ,new in the box never used, but not from dealer. This is its second season used for our flower gardens and a (small) vegy garden. I thought it was the perfect m/c until it seized a connecting rod bearing this weekend. I have owned a power saws for the past 30 yrs. which were used every year to cut up our winter's wood and have never had a 2-cycle seize like this. I also own a homelite weed wacker which is a 2-cycle, and it is 8 yrs old and still runs strong, so mixing fuel is not an issue.The Mantis company will not sell me the parts I need for repair because I live in Canada. Referred to an Echo distributor who in turn referred me to a repair shop in my home town.Priced the part. (# A011000210) $290 can + tax. A new motor according to Mantis is $150 U.S. but they will not sell to Canada. I am now seeing a whole different picture reguarding the Mantis Tiller. Lots and lots of sales but no way to buy parts at a far and reasonable price. Infact I don't even know why they come with a parts list. So here I am looks like new but will not run. Maybe I will sell the good parts on E-bay and recoup some of my money. What are my other options so far ????

(2 reviews)
On Nov 22, 2005, DOUGHEAD Carlsbad, NM wrote:

Bought my Mantis, but didn't use it for 3 years (unfortunatly)...When I did, it was one BIG disappointment...I use it because I have to...haven't had the starting problems as much as some, although does seem to be getting harder to start...the Throttle is a MENACE...when you hit a hard spot or something hard, the unit starts to bounce, thus you tighten your grip and the throttle speeds up, making it MORE dangerous...maybe it's all me, but can't control the speed, when tilling, using the back & forth motion, still piles EVERYTHING up behind it, instead of digging it into the ground...I have planter boxes, so when I get to the end, it leaves a big hole...tines aren't suppose to break but have broken one or two...
The Edger isn't even a your money...the crevice piece is non-efficient...does a somewhat job, only...
It was one of the BIGGEST WASTES OF MONEY I have ever done....learned the hard way....I will NOT ever recommend them to anyone...
the unit is NOT EASY for a "senior" to use....I have a large tiller that is just as easy to man-handle as the Mantis...for the price, buy a large tiller.....not that much difference...
The Mantis tiller is, OVER RATED, OVER PRICED & LOUSY....

On Nov 22, 2005, Mantis Tools responded with:


On Nov 23, 2005 4:29 PM, Mantis Tools added:

Dear Doughead:

The Mantis Tiller comes with a one year from date of purchase money-back guarantee when purchased directly from our factory. We'll even send UPS to your door to pick it up, as long as you box it up.

In addition, our tilling/cultivating tines come with a lifetime guarantee against breakage. Should a tine break, all you need to do is ship the broken one back and we will replace it at no charge.

The Mantis tiller is designed to be used in a simple back–and-forth motion, however if the tiller is kept in the same spot, with the throttle pressed, the tiller will absolutely dig a hole and if the loose dirt is removed, a deeper hole can be dug.

As with any new piece of equipment, it takes a few practice sessions to get the full benefit from it. Using a lighter touch on the throttle, and taking smaller “bites” will lessen the bouncing.

The Border Edger attachment, a free premium with a factory-direct order, is designed to make a more defined edge between any pieces of landscaping. The edger becomes more defined and neater with frequent and continued use of the attachment. The Border Edger attachment is not designed to cut overhanging landscaping or trim back overgrowth.

Any of our Customer Service Representatives would be happy to discuss the tiller operation with you; however, we have no information on how to get in touch with you. Please call us at 800-366-6268 Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., eastern time.

We would like the opportunity to help you.

Mantis Customer Service


Negative grhalejr
(2 reviews)
On Sep 5, 2004, grhalejr Grand Prairie, TX wrote:

I have owned two Manis tillers. I am happy with the work they do, and I didn't have any trouble with them starting as others seem to have had.

I bought my first Mantis tiller about ten or twelve years ago. It ran fine and did the work I expected of it for about five or six years. One day while tilling, the tines just stopped turning. It was apparent that the problem was in the transmission (broken cog, etc.) I took it to over ten shops in my area (there were no approved shops at that time). None of them could make repairs, even the shop where I purchased it. I bought another Mantis tiller (same model) from the same supplier. It worked well until this year.

About two months past the tines of this tiller stopped turning. Obivious the same problem as with the first tiller. Again I tried to get it repaired locally. No luck. Called Mantis. Lady who advised she was CEO of the repair section advised me to send it to them and she would give me "consideration", and assigned a "service number" for me to refer to. I sent it to them. About $17.00 shipping cost.

Got a call in about three weeks. Man said the tiller needed a new transmission ($135.00, if I am not mistaken) plus an overhaul of the engine ($95.00, if I am not mistaken). I asked him about what the woman had told me. He had no answer. I told him I would not spend that much on the tiller or even wanted it back. I purchased a similar tiller (which seems to do a better job for me than the Mantis did, even though it is a little heavier) at Sears for $189.00, less than the repair would have cost.

I received the tiller back yesterday (in the same package I shipped it in). My label was still on one side of the box (Xed out) while their shipping label had been placed on the opposite side of the box. Upon examing the box it was evident that they had not EVEN opened my box. The tape I had used to close and secure the box was still in place and had not been cut. The parts of tiller in the box were EXACTLY as I have packed them.

They are liars. I don't mind so much being ripped off by repair personal, but I don't like being lied to. There was no way they could have determined what was needed to be done without at least LOOKING at the tiller by opening the box.

Oh, yes, the CEO of repair advised me of a local shop which she said was the authorized repair shop. This shop has been closed over two years.

It really looks like no one in the Mantis operation knows anything about anything except sales. This situation can ruin what could be a great machine.

Gordon R. Hale
Grand Prairie, Texas

Negative suzi53
(1 review)
On Sep 4, 2004, suzi53 Eugene, OR wrote:

I agree with GGP, Merdith22, Weedkicker and mantis tiller also was ok (a little hard to start) the first year seemed to work good. I didn't need it the 2nd year but tried and couldn't get it started the 3rd year..tried all things recommended..finally gave up and used my shovel. This year I was determined to use it I NEEDED IT for a tough unturned area........well after numerous attempts of trying to get it keep it running, we took it to a shop and they finally got it was not easy for them either...they mentioned could have been bad or old gas..NOT TRUE...we checked all that ( in fact it was winterized) they really didn't know why it wouldn't start or why it was so hard. My husband was able to turn an area for me...a few weeks later I was gonna use won't start...I called Mantis and they gave me all these trouble shooters to check......Ok tried that, I'm frustrated after all that and a trip to the shop. I just want a machine that will work. I'm not a senior yet but the ad sshows it is great for senior citizens that is a lie..its hard to hold to get it started (my experience the 1st year). My machine is a piece of and Mantis won't replace it even with a used one..they said for $95 I could ship it to them and they'd look at it. I have no good words about the tiller, the company or its customer service..except they are polite to decline any requests. They are trained well. I'll never buy or recommend their products!!!!!! Unsatisfied consumer here.

Negative Meredith22
(6 reviews)
On Mar 6, 2004, Meredith22 Port Saint Lucie, FL wrote:

Have had my (gas powered) Mantis tiller for nearly 5 years. The first spring it worked great, no problems. The second spring, after storing properly over the winter and maintaining well, I began having problems with it starting and keeping running. Every year since then has been more and more difficult to the point where now, five years and very little use later, I'm ready to scrap the darn thing! Contrary to what their customer service told me, replacement parts and professional diagnosis/repairs are not available locally. (Do it yourself repairs for even simple parts are not easy.) Mantis needs to keep their authorized parts and repair centers updated. Even when I told Mantis the local dealers hadn't carried Mantis parts for years, they refused to make a note of this in their records.

I have made note of another reviewer's decision to purchase an electric Mantis tiller to replace the gas powered model he'd had similar problems to mine with. But I do not want to give this company another dime and thus will go elsewhere to find a suitable replacement.

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