It is time to Mow Electric!
Battery technology has advanced dramatically in the past decade and due to this, we’re seeing more powerful electric cars and more capable electric lawnmowers, snow blower and other lawn equipment. For most residential uses, electric equipment are actually a superior and more economical choice than gas powered ones. We hope that these manufacturer agnostic resources and the educational webinars we offer help you in choosing the new, cleaner lawn equipment for your use case.
Check out our webinar recordings at https://fresh-energy.org/goelectric/
Electric Lawn Mower Info Lists
Did you know that there are over 50 battery and 20 corded mowers available in the US? These lists provide basic specifications of different electric mower manufacturers' models. Since some manufacturers have numerous variations of their mowers, we have limited the number of mowers on the list to three per manufacturer. Please visit the manufacturers' website to find out more details about all of their models. These lists are brought to you by the American Lung Association of Minnesota. You can download the lists in PDF format by clicking the buttons on the picture on the right.
Battery chain saws, pole saws, trimmers and leaf blowers Info List
In addition to mowers manufacturers are providing a wide variety of other electric lawn equipment. Please visit the manufacturers' website to find out more details about all of their models. These lists are brought to you by the American Lung Association of Minnesota. You can download the lists in PDF format by clicking the buttons on the picture on the right.
Battery Snow Blower Info List
There are more and more electric snow blower options available. Battery technology improvements and technology developments are enabling these machines to compete with traditional technology. Please visit the manufacturers' website to find out more details about all of their models. These lists are brought to you by the American Lung Association of Minnesota. You can download the lists in PDF format by clicking the buttons on the picture on the right.
Why electric lawn equipment?
Here is a quick list of benefits that electric offer over the traditional combustion engine technology:
Less energy use
No emissions (user, neighborhood, city, planet)
Much quieter (user, neighborhood)
No need to mess with gas (buy, store, off-gas)
Cheaper to use (dollars and time)
Easier storage (can be stored upright)
Photo Credit: Makita
Photo Credit: Google Maps
How to choose the right mower for your yard?
Here are the main decisions:
Measure how big your lawn is. The standard 40'x120' city lot usually has about 3000 square feet of lawn. The rough battery capacity need can be calculated by dividing the lawn square footage by 15 so a 3000 square feet lawn requires a battery capacity of about 200Wh. Battery capacities are listed on our Electric Lawn Mower Info List or you can also calculate the battery capacity by multiplying the mower Voltage with the battery Ah rating. So, for example, a 56 Volt mower with a 5Ah battery has 280Wh capacity. If your lawn is bigger than the capacity rating of your favorite mower battery, no worries, you can always buy a second battery or take a little break in between the front and back lawn and let it charge a bit.
Choose how large you want the cutting width of the mower to be. Wider mowers work better for bigger lawns, whereas small mowers are more agile and work better for smaller lots.
Consider if you want a mower with a collection bag for clippings or if you have a hilly lot and would like a self propelled model.
Electric lawn mowers are lighter than old gas mowers, but look at the weight of the mower too. If you have a smaller lot you can get by with a more light weight model that is easier to handle and store.
Consider also what other yard equipment or hand tools the manufacturer offers that use the same battery as this specific mower.
Corded or battery mower?
This is determined by your budget, the size of your yard and if you have outlets available outside. Corded mowers are usually very affordable but then you need to buy a good, long extension cord and always be mindful of the cord when you mow. This can work well if you have outlets conveniently available and a relatively small yard. Battery mowers are more expensive, but make mowing easier since you don't need to worry about the cord and outlets.
Photo Credit: Black&Decker
Are there any comparisons or reviews available?
Sure. Popular Mechanics published a nice comparison article so check it out https://www.popularmechanics.com/home/tools/reviews/g122/we-test-the-best-battery-powered-lawnmowers/
How much does it cost to mow electric?
The average city lot is 3000 square feet and it takes about 200Wh to mow it. If we assume some charging inefficiencies, we say that you need 250Wh to charge. This means that if you mow your lawn four times you used 1kWh of energy so it costs you 12 cents.
And you can mow the average city lot 33 times for a dollar.
33 times = $1
Are there any purchase incentives available?
Check your electric utility for rebates!
In Minnesota for example Dakota Electric and East Central Electric do provide electric lawn equipment purchase incentives.
Are there any electric riding mowers?
Riding electric lawn mowers are the latest addition to the mix. This year there are about a dozen different models available. Many commercial customers are interested in shifting their yard equipment fleet to electric so it is good to see options in this area too. Here is a good article about electric riding mowers: https://todaysmower.com/going-green-2020-electric-riding-mowers-and-ztrs
Photo Credit: Ryobi
Photo Credit: Cub
How about the robotic mowers?
Robotic mower offers new kind of convenience especially for those who have big yards. You just mark the perimeter of your yard, set the mower charging stations in accessible location and let the mower free. It goes around the yard quietly every day (or night if you choose so) and keeps the lawn trimmed. Since it works every day it cuts only very short pieces so the clippings are not very noticeable. These mowers can also handle steep hills. It is just a bit different approach to mowing your lawn so think about it. PCMag had a great article about robotic mowers so check it out.
Other yard equipment
In addition to lawn mowers, manufacturers offer a lot of other electric lawn equipment. Battery designs are usually manufacturer specific, but most manufacturers offer a lineup of equipment that use a battery that is interchangeable between the equipment. This definitely is a great advantage because you might just need to own one or two batteries between several of the different equipment and even shop tools. Look at the Electric Lawn Mower Info List for a quick list of different options and visit a manufacturers' website for more information.
E = Edger
ST = String Trimmer
HT = Hedge Trimmer
LB = Leaf Blower
CS = Chain Saw
PS - Pole Saw
SB = Snow Blower
Photo Credit: Stihl