After sowing new seed or sod, a lawn can look uneven and messy. These bumps are caused by inconsistencies in the soil which create bumps and air pockets. To create even compaction, a lawn roller is the best choice. Lawn rollers are far more efficient than using your feet, and perform a much better job. The rollers can either be pushed by hand or connected to a garden tractor hitch. After filling the poly drum with sand or water, the drum is pulled across the ground. Multiple passes may be needed depending on the hardness of the ground. A lawn roller can become incredibly heavy when filled, yet only weight a couple dozen pounds when empty.
Perhaps the most important feature to consider is the width of the rolling drum. The wider the drum, the less passes you must make to finish the job. The internal capacity also makes a big difference. The most compacted soil requires a heavier drum than soil which is loose. Simply look at the gallon capacity of the poly drum to compare weight.
Besides compacting the ground, some yard owners like to roll over their grass for a smooth look. Rolling over grass produces a flattened appearance which is quite professional.
All modern lawn rollers are designed with a plastic drum which is very smooth on the outside. Users remove a plug and fill the drum with water or sand in order to give it weight. Once filled, rollers can weigh a couple hundred pounds. It should be quite obvious that there would be much pain from rolling over a foot with this tool. The drum acts as an axle, connected with bearings to a metal frame.
Push rollers are great for small to medium jobs and are powered by you. Feel free to push or pull the lawn roller across the ground. Having a garden tractor can prove advantageous, however, as many rollers have a hitch attachment. Multi-use lawn rollers can even switch between tractor and hand pushing mode. While pushing a roller is no small task, it is easier than you think. The smooth push lawn roller glides across ground surfaces of all types with ease.
In the old days, the drums were created out of solid iron, being that they did not have plastic yet. While effective, you can imagine how difficult it must have been to use and store such a tool.