Craftsman YS4500 Review and Specs

Do you have a large lawn? Is it so large that a push mower takes a long time to finish cutting? If that is the case, you will need to upgrade your lawn care equipment. One of the best choices out there is the Craftsman YS4500 riding mower.

The Craftsman YS4500 is an entry-level riding mower that can make short work by mowing a huge lawn. Its 42-inch, mid-mounted mower deck will let you cut huge swaths across your lawn. This means you will need significantly fewer passes to finish the job faster. This riding mower is not just from a respected company. It is also the choice of many landscaping professionals.

Read on to learn more about the Craftsman YS4500, its specs and features, and pros and cons.

About the Craftsman YS4500

Craftsman YS4500

Craftsman is a Company Popular for Making Quality Tools

Although Craftsman is a company best known for making quality tools, they have diversified into other industries. The Craftsman company is famous for manufacturing some of the best tools and equipment. They have been in the business for almost 90 years.

Craftsman also lends its iconic badge to lawn and garden care equipment Sears manufactures and sells in their stores. They will not risk their reputation by endorsing sub-par products. If you see the Craftsman branding on anything, expect high quality.

Suitable for Working on a Large Lawn

The Craftsman YS4500 is one of several models of riding lawnmowers that bear the Craftsman badge. All of them are quite nice. If you have to work on a large lawn, the YS4500 is for you. It is an incredible choice, especially if your lawn is so big that it takes you almost an entire day to mow.

This riding mower has a huge 42-inch mid-mounted mower that can cut a wide swath of grass. Not only will the Craftsman YS4500 make your regular lawn maintenance easier, but it will also be quite enjoyable.


You can get the Craftsman YS4500 for $1,330 (MSRP), one of the better deals on riding mowers.

What Can You Expect from the Craftsman YS4500?

The Craftsman YS4500 continues to leave a good impression on its users. Here are a just few of the things you can expect from this famous lawnmower:

1. Good for Beginners

If you are a newbie when it comes to riding mowers, the YS4500 is an excellent introduction to them. You are mistaken if you think you are in for a very shaky ride.

This is also not just a lawnmower. You can also use it as a mini-tractor. You can put all sorts of attachments, and it also has a tow hitch for a small trailer. If you like working in your yard or garden, you will like this little machine.

2. Powerful Engine

A Briggs & Stratton 2-cylinder, air-cooled engine powers the YS4500. It can pump out up to 22 horsepower (16.4 kW).

This engine has more than enough power to cut through thick grass without missing a beat. This engine also has a hydrostatic transmission and infinite forward and reverse gearing.

You would think that its 2-cylinder engine would be quite loud, but it is surprisingly quiet for a riding mower. You will surely not hear any complaints from the neighbors, especially if you mow their lawns.

This riding lawn mower also comes with a 3-gallon gas tank. Your mileage may vary depending on the terrain and the grass condition.

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3. Impressive Performance

The 724cc Briggs & Stratton engine transfers power to the 18-inch rear wheels. Also, with 22 horsepower to spare, this riding mower will not have any problem even on rough terrain.

Another nice thing about this riding mower is its handling. If you have a couple of trees on your property, you can easily drive around them. The Craftsman YS4500 can turn on a dime and still give you change.

The YS4500 has a 3-gallon capacity fuel tank. Even if you have a large lawn, you can finish it in just one full tank. A full gas tank can mow around half an acre of grass, which is quite impressive.

It is equipped with a 42-inch, mid-mounted mower blade deck. You can cut your grass as close as an inch-and-a-half off the ground, up to 4 inches high.

Even though this is mainly a riding lawnmower, the Craftsman YS4500 is also a mini tractor for your yard. You can get various attachments for your YS4500 to add more functionality.

4. Additional Attachments

Zero-turn Bagger

The Craftsman YS4500 is also compatible with most of the other attachments for other riding mowers from older models. One of the most popular attachments is the zero-turn bagger. This lets you automatically collect grass trimmings while you mow your lawn.

Snow Blade

There are also other attachments available that can make your YS4500 even more useful than it already is. For instance, there is what we call the snow blade. You can get it if you live in an area where the snow can get deep during the winters.

You can turn your riding mower into a miniature but still powerful snowplow with the snow blade attachment.

Snow Thrower Attachment

If you want to make the chore of clearing the snow more fun, get the snow thrower attachment. This will make you a big hit with the neighborhood kids. You can even help neighbors clear their driveways with it.

Other Attachments

You might find other attachments useful, especially if you plan to start a landscaping business. There are attachments for aerating and dethatching the lawn. You can also get a soil tiller and a cart to tow behind the mower.

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Specifications of the Craftsman YS4500

craftsman ys4500 review

Here are the Craftsman YS4500 specs:

  • Engine – Briggs & Stratton gasoline 2-cylinder and air-cooled
  • Displacement – 724cc (44.18 ci)
  • Power – 22 horsepower (16.4 kW)
  • Fuel Type – Gasoline, unleaded
  • Transmission – Hydro-Gear 351-0510 (infinite forward and reverse)
  • Fuel Capacity – 3 gallons/ 11.35 liters
  • Steering – Manual
  • Mower – 42″ Mowing Deck (mid-mounted)
  • Mower Blade – 2-blade design with manual lift
  • MSRP – $1,330

Again, what year was the Craftsman YS 4500? In 2011, the Craftsman YT 4500 54″ Lawn Tractor became Craftsman’s top-of-the-line residential mower.

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Features of the Craftsman YS4500

Who is the Craftsman YS4500 for? This small yet powerful ride-on mower is for those who have rather large properties and wide lawns and gardens.

If you think your push mower is not cutting it anymore, it also works for you. This means you feel like you need something bigger and more powerful.

The Craftsman YS4500 lawn tractors will make your lawn care chores more bearable and enjoyable. To further convince you to pull the trigger on the YS4500, here are some of its most notable features:

1. Powered by Briggs & Stratton Engines

The Craftsman YS4500 comes with a Briggs & Stratton 441777 2-cylinder gas engine. It can deliver up to 22 horsepower.

This brand has a very positive reputation for being quite durable and dependable. I have seen several mowers with B & S engines that work great after more than a decade.

2. Hydrostatic Transmission

Like other Craftsman mowers, the YS4500 uses a hydrostatic transmission to transfer power from the engine to the wheels. This type of transmission is similar to an automatic transmission on automobiles. This means it does not require the shifting of gears.

3. 42-inch Mowing Decks

The YS4500 comes with a 42-inch wide, mid-mounted mowing deck. This will allow you to cut a much wider grass swath than traditional mowers. You will be spending significantly less time mowing your grass, giving you more time to admire your handiwork.

You can also lift and lower the mowing deck depending on how close you want to cut your grass. The lowest setting is 1 ½ inches, while the highest is 4 inches.

4. Mow-In-Reverse Option

Like the other Craftsman riding mower models, the YS4500 comes with a Mow-in-reverse feature. This means that the mower blades will always be continuously spinning.

You can expect that even when you shift the tractor into reverse. This will not just save time but will also conserve gas. The reason is that it does not need to stop the blades and spin them again.

5. Fully Welded Frame

You can count on the Craftsman YS4500 when it comes to durability. The mower’s frame is from high-quality steel tubing. It comes fully welded to ensure its strength and durability.

6. Ergonomics

You will be working on your lawn for a couple of hours. That said, ensure that you are comfortable while doing it.

The Craftsman YS4500 has an ergonomic steering wheel with comfortable, padded grips and power steering. It also has a nicely padded seat, and high backrest, so lower backache will not be an issue.

7. Warranty

All Craftsman riding mowers come standard with a 2-year limited warranty covering the engine and chassis. You can also get a full refund or a brand-new replacement for irreparable factory defects.

Consumable parts, including but not limited to sparkplugs, filters, mower blades, and the like, are exempted from the warranty.

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Pros and Cons of the Craftsman YS500

craftsman ys4500 years made

The Craftsman YS4500 is one heck of a machine. However, even though it has a lot of benefits, it also has several downsides. Fortunately, such downsides are not that serious:


1. Powerful and Durable Engine

The Briggs & Stratton engine is one of the best in the industry. You can expect the engine to last more than a decade with proper basic maintenance.

2. Smooth and Comfortable Ride

There are no strong vibrations from the mower deck (original blade installed) and the engine. You can ride this mower for hours in relative comfort.

3. Efficient Mowing Capability

This mower cuts grass phenomenally, thanks to its 22-horsepower engine. It manages to do so regardless of whether it is going forward or reverse. The YS4500 also has a tight turning radius. This allows you to maneuver deftly around obstacles while still cutting the grass.

4. Comes with Lots of Attachments

You can change the mower deck, attach mulch bags, and turn it into a snow blower or plow by changing attachments. There are also plenty of attachments available for Craftsman lawn tractors.

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1. Replacing Mower Blades Is Tricky

It almost always seems like replacing the stock mower blades increases vibrations. Replacement blades always seem unbalanced and will require tons of tuning to get the mower running right.

2. Not That Good Stock Tires

The tires that came with the YS4500 do not provide that much traction. They also wear down quite quickly. The wheel assembly is also not quite as good as other brands. Many YS4500 owners complain that the front wheels were already misaligned after a year or so of use.

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Conclusion – Craftsman YS4500

The Craftsman YS4500 is one of the entry-level riding mowers that bear the company name. This mower is one of the most impressive specs-wise. It has a 42-inch, mid-mounted mower deck that can easily cut through a wide swath across your lawn.

This is a great investment if you have a sizeable lawn area or are thinking of starting a landscaping company.

The YS4500 bears the Craftsman brand name and that, in itself, means quality. If you want a reliable and durable riding mower/mini tractor, you can count on the Craftsman YS4500 to deliver.