Best Electric Lawn Mower Summary Table
Please find our detailed analysis and buying guide of all the models after the best electric lawn mower summary table.
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Continue reading if you are curious about our choices from previous years.
Black & Decker SPCM1936 Cordless Electric Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
Note – the SPCM 1936 self-propelled model is no longer available on Amazon. The links now direct users to the Black & Decker CM1936ZA 36V Cordless Lawn Mower – which is not self-propelled.
Those who are looking for a self-propelled electric lawn mower – and who don’t mind a much heavier machine – should find the SPCM1936 the right choice. One reason it’s so heavy is that it runs on a 30-pound lead-acid battery, which can either be charged while in the mower or when removed; Your House Garden were not a fan of the older style lead-acid models because they take a long time to charge (12 hours for this one) and have to be plugged in if they’re not being used. They’re fine for smaller yards and for small gardens, though, with the charge lasting between 45-60 minutes and letting you mow about 1/3 of an acre.
As far as performance, the Black & Decker delivers as well as the two other models we’ve reviewed so far, cutting almost any size grass you can throw at it and moving easily thanks to its variable-speed self-propel mode, which is controlled by a handle and can “learn” your personal pace of mowing.
The 19-inch polymer cutting deck is a little smaller than on the mowers we’ve previously discussed, but it’s close enough to still make a good dent on your lawn on each pass. The SPCM1936 also has the now-common 3-in-1 mulch, bag or discharge options, as well as a one-touch system for changing mowing height.
You can probably tell why this electric lawn mower didn’t challenge for the top spot on our list – the battery, with its associated weight and charging-time limitations. But when it comes to the simple question of whether or not it can do a nice job mowing your lawn – it certainly can.
An in-depth look at the Black & Decker SPCM1936 Cordless Electric Self-Propelled Lawn Mower’s specifications:
Tip: While you’re investigating gardening equipment you probably want to check out Black and Decker’s top leaf blower.
Ryobi RY40112A Cordless Electric Lawnmower
There is one thing Your House Garden liked very much about the Ryobi RY40112A, but also a couple of negatives which knocked it down to number five on our list of top 5 best electric lawn mowers.
Here’s what we liked: the mower comes with two 40-volt lithium-ion batteries; only one of them can be used at a time, but the second one can be recharging while you mow so you can minimize downtime. Additionally, the batteries are interchangeable with those on all other Ryobi tools and lawn equipment.
We weren’t as thrilled with the batteries’ recharging time of 90 minutes (compared to 30 minutes with the lithium-ion batteries in our other reviewed models), and the smaller cutting footprint of the RY40112A’s 16-inch deck.
This lawnmower is lightweight, efficient, and cuts grass exactly the way it should. It’s not quite as versatile as some of the competition, only allowing a maximum cutting height of 2 ¾ inches, but it will still do the job quite nicely for a small garden and lawn.
The specifications for the Ryobi RY40112A Cordless Electric Lawn mower:
Is an Electric Lawn Mower Right For You?
Humans are predictable. Most of us like to stick with what we’re familiar with, until or unless we see compelling reasons to make a change.
Since a large number of people grew up with gas-powered mowers, it’s natural for them to think that the ritual of mowing the lawn includes dragging a heavy machine and gas can outside, filling the tank (and checking the oil, if you’re conscientious), and breathing the sweet fumes produced by an internal combustion engine.
Today’s electric mowers, though, make sense for many homeowners, particularly those with small lawns – and those who are sick of spilling gas on their favorite jeans. If you haven’t given much thought to switching until now, here’s what you need to know to make the right decision.
Advantages of Gas Mowers
There are definitely arguments in favor of sticking with a trusty gas-powered lawn mower.
– Best for large lawns: Depending on the size of a mower’s gas tank, you may be able to mow a half-acre lawn (or even a larger one) without stopping. If you do have to pause, it’s just for a quick gas refill. Battery-powered lawnmowers can only handle a 1/4 – 1/3 acre lawn at most, before needing a lengthy recharge. Corded mowers can’t handle a large lawn because of their power cord.
– Power: No two ways about it; a gas mower has more power than an electric, so it’s a better choice for thick and wet grass. Electric machines are limited to “straightforward” mowing jobs.
– Durability: Some electrics are well-built, but by comparison, most gas mowers are tanks. With proper maintenance, they’ll usually be around long after the neighbors have to replace their electric mower.
– Alternatives: You can choose a self-powered gas lawn mower, a riding gas lawn mower or a zero-turn radius gas lawn mower, depending on your lawn and your physical needs. You don’t have any of those options if you go with electric.
Advantages of Electric Mowers
If you haven’t made a quick decision after seeing the advantages of gas lawn mowers, here are reasons you might want to choose an electric mower.
– Quiet: Electric mowing isn’t silent, but an electric model makes half the noise of the average gas-powered machine.
– Low-maintenance: Electric mowers are often described as “maintenance-free.” That’s not quite the case, since batteries do eventually have to be swapped out and cables may eventually wear out. However, there are no oil changes, filters, spark plugs or winter drainage to worry about when you use an electric lawn mower, and there are fewer moving parts which could fail and require expensive repairs.
– Easy to push: Electric lawn mowers usually weigh 55 pounds or less, so they’re easier to wheel around the yard. Gas mowers are more of a burden to push, with some approaching or exceeding 100 pounds with a full tank. Electrics are usually easier to store, too.
– Environmentally-friendly: No internal combustion engine means no pollutants are released into the atmosphere. For some homeowners, that’s a deciding factor all by itself.
– Easy start: You just push a button to start an electric mower. Some gas models start with the push of a button (when the mechanism works), but most require the time-honored fight with a pull-cord.
– No gasoline: Do you enjoy dragging cans to the gas station to be refilled, and then dragging them around your lawn and storage space? Do you enjoy paying more and more for gas as prices go up? Do you enjoy having to carefully fill your mower and still having pools of gas on your machine or driveway that have to be mopped up? Do you love the residual smell of gas on your hands and clothing? We don’t, either.
Disadvantages of Gas and Electric Mowers
It’s pretty to figure out the negatives of each mower type simply by looking at the positives. Here’s a cheat sheet, though.
Gas mower disadvantages: Noisier, heavier, can be harder to start, require more maintenance, emit pollution, require gas and oil refills as well as drainage in the winter.
Electric mower disadvantages: Can’t handle large lawns, less powerful, require often-long recharging, not as sturdy, no riding or self-powered options.
Price Considerations – Gas vs. Electric Mowers
At first glance, gas and electric mowers seem to be in the same price ballpark. Electrics may be a bit more expensive, but the difference isn’t huge.
The hidden costs weigh in favor of electric, though. When you compare the average price of gas (plus oil, spark plugs, filters and the like) to the price of electricity, a gasoline mower will usually end up costing you more in the long run. Those who’ve done the math have found that it costs about $1.00 to mow an acre of grass with an electric model, while a gas machine costs about $4.50 per acre to use.
Then add in the cost of maintenance over time. It’s more expensive to maintain and repair an internal combustion engine, than it is to buy a new battery for an electric mower every couple of years.
In most cases, electric mowers are less expensive to buy and operate than gas-powered ones.
Gas vs Electric Mowers, Which to Choose?
If you’re still not sure whether you should buy a gas or electric lawn mower, here’s the quick summary.
Those with larger lawns or thick grass, or those who want the convenience of a riding or self-propelled mower, should definitely opt for a gas mower. Those with a very small lawn, or those who don’t have the physical ability to push a larger and heavier mower, should unquestionably go with electric.
Homeowners who don’t fit into either category should at least strongly consider a well-built electric lawn mower. For most, the pros will strongly outweigh the cons.
Feeling brave or really just want to save time and energy? Why not check out The Top 5 Best Robot Lawn Mower Reviews… yes you read that right Robot Lawn Mowers are really a thing!