Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mowers for 2023. Lowest cutting lawn mower
Lawnmower buying guide: How to choose the best lawn mower
A lush, leafy green lawn is what many gardeners dream of having. And for that, you need a good lawnmower.
In fact, the lawn is often the largest area of the garden. So having a high-quality lawnmower that suits your grass and garden size is vital. In fact, I think it’s the most important gardening tool you can own.
But shopping for a lawnmower can feel overwhelming. There are so many different types and the jargon is confusing. Often the models get more expensive, but the added extras are hard to identify.
So I’ve put together a lawnmower buying guide. It is completely independent and objective. I am not reviewing or recommending specific models or brands, or trying to sell you anything.
The buying guide simply aims to explain the different features and show which type of lawnmower is best for different garden sizes, styles and power requirements.
Lawn mower types
Cylinder lawn mowers have cylindrical blades that rotate vertically at the front of the mower. They cut against a fixed blade at the bottom. The cylinder should have multiple blades – three or more is best.
Cylinder lawnmowers are best for flat lawns that you want to keep short and well-manicured. They can be electric, petrol-powered and push mowers.
Rotary lawnmowers have a single blade that rotates horizontally underneath the mower, like the propellers of a plane.
Rotary lawn mowers are the most versatile type and will cope with most types of grass. They are better than cylinder mowers at cutting longer and rougher grass.
A rotary mower may be powered by mains electric, rechargeable battery or petrol engine.
Hover lawnmowers hover above the ground, making them easier to push and adept at mowing uneven surfaces. They are a good choice for unusual-shaped lawns and cheaper than other types.
However, hover lawnmowers are not always suitable for larger gardens. They are usually electric powered and have rotary blades.
Lawnmower power options
Most lawnmowers are powered by mains electricity. This is the best choice for small and medium-sized gardens. The mowers are smaller, cheaper to buy and easy to store.
Check that the cable will allow you to mow to the end of your garden before you buy.
You should expect to pay £100 to £200 for an electric mower. Hover lawnmowers are cheaper, starting at around £50.
Cordless battery-powered lawn mowers are a hassle-free garden mower. They have all the benefits of an electric mower but you don’t need to worry about a cable.
However, they can be more expensive than mains electric models because of the battery. Modern lithium ion batteries are lighter and last much longer than traditional nickel-cadmium versions, but they are more costly.
You should expect to pay £300 to £500 for a cordless lawnmower.
Petrol-powered lawn mowers are the best choice for large gardens where a mains cable would be unsuitable. They are bit more expensive but much more powerful and faster at cutting. They are also easier to manoeuvre around large objects.
However, bear in mind that petrol lawnmowers will need servicing like car engines, and you will need to check and top-up the oil.
You should expect to pay £150 to £500 for a petrol lawnmower, depending on your power requirements.
These are generally small cylinder lawnmowers that you simply push along with your muscle power. They are best for small gardens and don’t use electricity or produce noise and emissions.
However, push lawnmowers are not suitable for larger or sloping gardens or people who have difficulty pushing.
You should expect to pay £40 to £100 for a push lawnmower.
Lawn mowers for different garden sizes
Think of your lawn as a tennis court. A full-size court would be a medium lawn, half the court or less would be a small lawn. Anything bigger is a large lawn.
- Small lawn (up to 100 sq m): electric and cordless lawn mowers.
- Medium lawn (100 – 250 sq m): electric, cordless and petrol lawn mowers.
- Large lawn (250 sq m): petrol lawn mowers.
Other lawnmower factors to consider
Some electric and petrol lawnmowers are self-propelled. This means that you don’t need to push them – simply steer them in the right direction!
It makes mowing much easier, especially with large lawns and heavy machines. Some models come with adjustable speeds, so you can set it to a comfortable walking pace.
It is generally advised to collect grass clippings rather than leaving them on the lawn. Most lawnmowers collect the clippings in a box at the back. This is better than mowers that leave you to rake them up afterwards!
If you have a medium or large lawn, look for a high-capacity grass box. This will cut down how often you need to stop mowing and empty the box.
You can also get lawn mowers that chop up the grass clippings very finely and push them back into the lawn as mulch. These are sometimes called recycling mowers. The mulch adds nutrients back into the lawn.
The fine shredding helps the clippings break down quickly so they don’t smother the rest of the grass. Mulching mowers are expensive but a good choice if you don’t have anywhere to dispose of grass clippings.
A lawn mower’s cutting width refers to how wide a stripe the lawnmower can cut. A larger cutting width will reduce how much time you spend mowing the lawn.
Here’s a handy guide using the lawn sizes from above.
Cutting height refers to how high the grass will be when you have cut it. Most lawnmowers have adjustable cutting heights – you simply move the blades up or down.
This helps you dictate the height of the grass, and leave it longer in autumn or during dry periods. Cutting height ranges are usually 20mm to 60mm – see my section on proper mowing technique below for advice.
If you want the striped lawn finish you see on football pitches, you need a lawnmower with a rear roller. The heavier the mower and its roller, the longer your stripes will last.
Rear rollers also allow you to mow right up to the edge of the lawn.
If you have lots of lawn edges, it is worth looking for a model that can cut right up to the edge. Generally cylinder blades or versions with rear rollers are better at this.
Any mower with inset front wheels or a grass collection comb is also great for mowing edges – no need to go back round with a strimmer.
Robot lawn mowers
Robot lawn mowers are becoming more commonplace these days. The technology is getting better all the time and they can now recognise obstacles and lawn edges. And they are a lot more affordable, though still not cheap.
Robot lawnmowers are for you if you really, really hate mowing the lawn. There is some set-up involved as you have to lay a perimeter wire. Then just leave the mower to get on with cutting. Some models even ‘self-park’ into a charging station after mowing.
Proper mowing technique
Now you have the best lawnmower, you need to get your mowing technique sorted too. A great-looking lawn needs a regular mowing regime that encourages the grasses to develop fine leaves. It also keeps the growth lush and dense, and stops weeds and moss spreading.
The single biggest mistake most people make when cutting the lawn is to cut too low. This is known as ‘scalping’ the grass, and can seriously weaken it.
For normal lawns that get wear and foot traffic, keep the grass around 5cm high. For ornamental lawns that don’t get used much, you can go as low as 2.5cm.
Always remove leaves and grass clippings after mowing and feed the lawn in spring and autumn with special lawn fertiliser. Make sure you choose the right one – spring feeds encourage leafy growth and autumn mixtures build stronger roots.
Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mowers for 2023
As we once again approach the mowing season, OPE Reviews wants to offer its recommendations for the best battery-powered lawn mowers in 2023. These mowers have really improved to the point where they work great on large lawns. Of course, anyone with a smaller lawn can also benefit. No matter what your intended use for a battery-powered lawnmower might be, our Pros give their thoughts and tell you which ones they love to use.
If for some reason your favorite mower isn’t listed—tell us why you think it should be included in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев below!
Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mower – What We Look For
Power to Cut Grass
With brushless motors, testing lawnmower power becomes more challenging. This is due to the ability of these motors to adjust power to meet the load on the cutting blade. To get a sense of real-world power, we cut an overgrown section of grass to around 4-inches and then see how short we can cut it.
The best battery-powered lawn mowers can cut these curated sections of grass at the lowest cutting positions without stalling out. It really lets us know how much working power the mower has.
Runtime and Cutting Area
Determining runtime on a battery-powered lawn mower combines several different metrics. We need to understand how much area we can cut on a single charge. To do this, we prepare our lawn by cutting it to a standard height. Then, we see how long we can mow on one battery charge as we cut it down to 3 inches.
Once we know that, we calculate the maximum area you should be able to mow without having to stop and change or recharge the batteries.
Quality of Cut
We test three basic things to determine the cut quality of each battery-powered mower. We look at the evenness of the cut, bagging efficiency, and the mower’s mulching efficiency.
To gauge evenness, we look for blades that stick out along a cut line. We also observe areas that may have been cut shorter than intended.
Measuring bagging efficiency looks at how much grass the mower leaves behind compared to how much it collects in the bag. Run three mowers over a similar section of grass, and the bags will likely tell very different stories as to how much grass gets collected.
Mulching efficiency takes in consideration the size of the grass clippings dropped by the mower as it makes a pass. It also looks to see if the lawnmower leaves behind any clumping or trailing along the path.
To understand how much noise each battery-powered lawn mower makes, we use an SPL meter set to slow response, A-weighted. In an open area, we measure the recorded decibels taken from a 5-foot, 8-inch operator’s ear.
We consider the quality of the battery-powered lawn mower by looking at the materials used. We also observe how well the mower is put together and how each major component physically functions. We’re looking for solid parts that will last well beyond the warranty period, rigid construction, and ample protection for any electrical components including the battery pack(s).
Mowing on Hills and Slopes
In Florida, we don’t encounter many slopes, but we do have access to some hilly terrain. We also encounter many lakes—most of which have sloped sides. And, of course, nearly every property out in the county has proximity to drainage ditches. We check both push mowers and self-propelled models to check how well they maintain traction when mowing uphill, downhill, and side-to-side along a pitch.
In addition to any standout features, here’s a list of the standard items we look for:
- Brushless motor
- Drive type and function
- Deck size and material
- Height range and adjustment
- Handle positions
- Rear/side discharge and bagging options
- Battery ports and functionality
Price and Value
Our professional reviewers really appreciate value. To us, value means more than just the price of a product. It combines what you pay against what you get. A more expensive product may present the best battery-powered lawn mower value if it performs far better than the budget brands.
Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mower Buying Guide
As you’re deciding on the best battery lawn mower for you in 2023, consider how far these outdoor tools have come. Today’s battery-powered lawn mowers provide longer run-time, better cutting performance, and vastly improved features and ergonomics over the first models we started seeing back in 2014.
What’s Your Budget?
While you can buy a battery lawn mower for under 300, plan to spend at least 500 if you want something that comes from a reputable manufacturer and has features like a self-propelled mechanism. If you want premium features, expect that price to hit or exceed 700 (and Pro models can go even higher).
Looking back at gas lawnmowers, this may give you pause. After all, you can typically find a gas mower for a lot less money. You might even get something that has more power and additional features. The best battery-powered lawn mowers are more about what you don’t get: Noise, emissions, and yearly winterization hassles and costs.
Are Battery Riding Mowers Viable?
Several zero-turn and riding mowers exist in both the consumer and professional markets. Professional landscaping crews have options such as the Greenworks Lithium Z zero turn (they also have a battery-powered UTV). You can also look got brands like Green Machine.
Homeowners have many more choices. Brands like EGO, Ryobi, Greenworks, Cub Cadet, and others crowd the field—giving you lots of great choices. That wasn’t the case just several years ago.
We’ve reviewed many of these battery-powered zero-turn mowers. The downside comes in the form of potential increased up-front costs compared to similar gas ZTs. A second potential issue comes with charge times. One of the fastest charge times to date comes from Greenworks. Their ZTs use external dual battery chargers to top off batteries in just 90 minutes. For many other ZTs you might have to wait several hours to recharge all of the packs. That’s far longer than refilling a gas zero-turn lawn mower!
A third factor to consider involves longevity. Battery-powered zero-turn mowers are fairly new-to-market. That means we don’t yet fully understand the long-term maintenance or repair issues and required to keep these tools running for extended periods of time. Users of gas-powered ZTs can keep their tools running for 10 years or more with regular maintenance. With a fully-electric power plant, we simply don’t know what kind of service life to expect—even with proper maintenance routines.
Residential or Commercial Quality?
On the surface, there’s not a huge difference between commercial quality and residential quality walk-behind battery lawn mowers.
High-end battery-powered mowers match or exceed the power of comparable gas-powered mowers. The Milwaukee M18 FUEL lawn mower notably demonstrated more power than a popular commercial gas mower in recent testing. The EGO Select Cut XP —technically a residential model—also bests many gas models in our testing.
Commercial battery mowers add design and features that meet the needs of professional landscapers. Steel and aluminum decks come to mind as do more rigid methods of adjusting deck height. Pros also demand the best cut quality and excellent bagging performance. Lastly, mowers designed for landscaping professionals must be ready to operate for longer periods of time—and for multiple days of the week.
Brands such as STIHL, Makita, and Husqvarna—to name a few—rely on their dealer networks rather than big box stores. You get additional support during and after the sale that you won’t find at other retailers.
Battery-powered riding mowers are a completely different ballgame. With those, you’ll find a much greater difference in Pro-vs-residential design and performance, along with a massive gap in cost.
Self-Propelled or Push Mower?
Self-propelled drives don’t subtract much from overall runtime. If you can afford this feature, we recommend getting it. Rather than simply on or off controls, look for variable speed that lets you dial in a top speed and then vary your pace within that range. EGO, Milwaukee Tool, Ryobi, and others offer this feature. You may also want to try out the controls in the store or dealership before buying it. We can typically get a good feel for the ergonomics of a mower after playing with it for a few minutes.
Look for a mower that disengages its drive easily when you want to pull the mower back. Some systems have a hard time disengaging the self-propelled motor. These mowers require you to drag the drive wheels rather than letting them roll.
Classic push mowers also have their place—especially if you’re on a budget. These mowers typically drop 100 off the price of a comparable self-propelled mower and they cut just as well and with slightly higher runtime.
Bag, Mulch, or Side Discharge?
No matter if you tend to mulch or bag, we recommend getting a mower that has all three modes (including side discharge). There are times when you can use each throughout the year to your advantage.
The Ryobi AWD mower has an interesting integrated lever/gate system for switching between bagging and mulching modes. We love not having to remember where we placed the mulching plug! Nearly all push mowers include a bagging option—so figuring out rear or side discharge remains about the only decision here.
Deck and Blade Size
All of the best battery-powered lawn mowers use 21-inch blades for the most part. A couple have 20-inch blades and some vary in how they take that measurement. We appreciate brands that list the actual blade diameter (like Makita) as opposed to simply stating the deck diameter. The latter has no bearing on the cutting swatch.
Smaller push mowers work really well for tiny lawns or gardens. We know a gentleman who preferred a small 16-inch mower because he had to carry it up and down the stairs to mow his tiny backyard!
For those looking for a larger deck, both Greenworks Commercial and Greenworks Pro 60V have 25-inch mowers. Ryobi also just released a 30-inch riding mower that fits through gates—even with a bagger installed! Residential battery-powered riding mowers currently go up to 54 inches or larger while you can find commercial models with up to 74-inch decks.
Larger deck sizes really help when mowing lawns larger than 1/3-acre in size. When mowing a lawn less than that, standard 20- or 21-inch decks work really well.
Deck Height Adjustment and Cutting Height Range
Most consumers set their height once and leave it alone after that. Single-point height adjustments make it easy to adjust your cutting height. It’s certainly easier than adjusting each wheel manually.
Pros typically prefer 2 or 4-point adjustments. What they really want are stiff decks that don’t rock while you cut so that you get an even cut across any lawn. A 4-point height adjustment system offers the most rigid solution. This one is really about preference.
The majority of battery-powered lawnmowers have all the height range you need to cover a wide variety of grass species. If you prefer to cut at heights over 3-1/2 inches or under 2 inches, just double check that the mower you’re looking at has that option.
Multiple Battery Ports
When mowing lawns over 1/3 of an acre, you may benefit from multiple battery ports. We typically see three ways lawnmowers utilize these ports:
- The second storage port acts as a battery holder
- An active second port includes a manual switch for engaging the second battery
- Two active battery ports include automatic switching where you can use either port while mowing
Automatic switching seems to be common—and certainly the most convenient. You find this option on the higher-priced mowers. While we prefer that over manually switching or swapping batteries, it does save you from having to return to the garage, shed, or trailer to get another battery.
Why Buy a Battery-Powered Lawn Mower?
The best battery-powered lawn mower for you should get your lawn cut on one charge. No matter which model that is, they all share some common characteristics. There are no gas emissions and no gas engine to maintain. You still need to clean it off when you’re done, but the maintenance is much easier and takes less time.
They’re also quieter. The early bird gets the worm and if you want to start mowing at 7:00 on Saturday morning, your neighbors can probably sleep through it. of a night owl? Many battery-powered mowers have headlights, and you’re unlikely to disturb your neighbor’s Lord of the Rings marathon at 10:00 PM.
Those are some of the more obvious reasons, but one of our favorites is the ability to put the battery in and mow. There’s no cranking, no choke, and no fuel cut-off valve. As long as you have enough batteries to get the entire lawn cut, it’s an easier system to work with than gas.
Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mower Overall
Pro Pick: Milwaukee M18 Fuel 21-Inch Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
The Milwaukee lawn mower simply prioritizes power above all. With a full 10 ft-lbs of torque (roughly exceeding a 200cc gas engine), the M18 Fuel self-propelled lawn mower can start up while nearly buried in grass. It is the strongest battery-powered walk-behind we’ve had our hands on for testing to date. It runs off a pair of 12.0Ah batteries, running as much as 60 minutes in light conditions. We clocked over 40 minutes when doing some major grass-cutting (removing 4 – 6 inches of growth).
5 Best Cordless Electric Lawn Mower 2023
With that said, the mower doesn’t come without some glitches. The drive bar introduces some thumb fatigue, for example. In the end, we found we could adjust our natural grip to overcome most of the strain when mowing for extended periods of time.
Milwaukee Tool designed this mower to handle professional use while offering the convenience of single-point height adjustments and vertical storage.
Price: 999 for the kit with two 12.0Ah batteries and a dual-port Rapid charger
Residential Pick: EGO 56V Select Cut XP 21-Inch Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
The EGO Select Cut XP Mower built upon the original EGO Select Cut mower—an instant favorite of ours with its stacked-blade system and solid performance level to go with its excellent cut quality. EGO stepped it up with the release of the Select Cut XP, taking everything we already loved and stepping up the torque to 8.3 ft-lbs. It can still use some help on the side/rear discharge, but if you bag or mulch like most people, it’s tough to find a better mower to maintain your lawn.
Price: 549 bare, 799 with a 10.0Ah battery and Rapid charger
Best Self-Propelled Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
As self-propelled models, our recommendations from Milwaukee and EGO top the charts in this category, too. Here are two more outstanding options for you.
Pro Pick: Makita ConnectX 21-inch Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
One of the biggest challenges with any battery-powered lawn mower is runtime. Makita put that problem squarely in its crosshairs and developed the ConnectX system. Unlike other designs, the 1200Wh power supply attaches directly to the top of the mower, offering more than 3x the capacity of most cordless mowers and running up to 3 hours continuously.
Similar to the 18V X2 (36V) XML08, the mower tops out at 2800 RPM with a 2300 RPM Quiet Mode and has a true 21-inch steel deck.
Price: 999.00 bare, ~1399.00 power supply (2348.00 for both)
Residential Pick: Ryobi 40V HP Brushless CrossCut 21-Inch Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
Ryobi crushed it with the development of the 40V HP Brushless CrossCut self-propelled lawn mower, making huge strides over its previous generation of mowers. Matching up very well against EGO’s Select Cut XP, it’s a stacked blade design that offers excellent power and cut quality. Where it has a clear advantage over its competitors is on the side discharge. This mower distributes clippings far better than other battery-powered lawn mowers we’ve tested. Plus, Ryobi builds this mower in the US using global materials, and the kit is typically priced less than the EGO Select Cut XP mower.
Price: 749 with two 6.0Ah batteries and a Rapid charger
Best Battery-Powered Commercial Lawn Mower
Milwaukee and Makita both earned our recommendations as the top overall battery-powered lawn mowers on the commercial side. Greenworks Commercial is another brand worth considering thanks to improvements in its 25-inch model heading into the year.
Greenworks Commercial 82V 25-inch Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
The big deal for Greenworks Commercial is an improvement in power. The 25-inch mower now has the performance equivalent to a 160cc gas engine. Aside from that and a change in the color scheme, it’s still very similar to the previous version with side-by-side blades that overlap to cover a larger area without losing a ton of battery efficiency.
The entire Greenworks Commercial line got an overhaul coming into this year with tools that are lighter and higher performing, making it one of the emerging systems to keep an eye on as more areas of the country shift to battery power.
Best Cordless Push Lawn Mower
Ryobi 40V HP Brushless CrossCut 21-Inch Push Lawn Mower
If you don’t want a self-propelled drive system or you’re looking to save a little money, you can get a quality push mower with similar performance and features to the top models we already mentioned. Of those options, Ryobi’s CrossCut is our pick as the best battery-powered push mower. Essentially, it just removes the drive system and keeps the performance, cut quality, and other features, along with its US-built designation.
Price: 599.00 with a 7.5Ah battery and Rapid charger
Best Cordless Mower for Small Lawns
Skil PWRCore 20 18-inch Lawn Mower
The joy of a small lawn is that it doesn’t take long to cut and you can go with a smaller mower that takes up less space. A 17 or 18-inch deck is great for that kind of lawn. The good news is, you don’t have to sacrifice all the features of larger mowers to get.
Our top pick is the Skil PWRCore 20 18-inch lawn mower. It has the benefits of a brushless motor, folds up for vertical storage, and its 20V batteries are compatible with Skil’s entire line of PWRCore 20 lawn and power tools.
Price: 299 with two 4.0Ah batteries and a dual-port charger.
Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mower for Large Lawns
Greenworks Pro 60V 25-inch Self-Propelled Lawn Mower
In our testing, the Greenworks Commercial 25-inch mower earned our pick as the best battery-powered lawn mower for large lawns. Currently, no one else comes close to its 25-inch cutting width in a walk-behind. With the pair of 4.0Ah batteries in the kit, we were able to cut for over an hour, easily covering a 1/2-acre. With a 599.00 price tag when you buy direct from Greenworks, it’s an excellent value, too!
Best Cordless Lawn Mower. Top 10 Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mowers in 2023
Once you get close to 3/4 of an acre, you might want to consider a battery-powered riding mower.
Best Battery-Powered Riding Lawn Mower
Residential: EGO 52-Inch Residential ZT Mower (ZT4204L)
The EGO Z6 Zero Turn Riding Mower shook up what you can expect from a battery-powered riding mower in 2021. This year, they’re stepping it up a level with a 52-inch fabricated deck and power equivalent to a 25HP gas engine. It keeps the comfort and refined controls of the original model, making the “Tesla of ZTs” even better.
Price: 6999 with six 12.0Ah batteries and onboard charger.
Commercial: Mean Green 74-inch EVO Zero Turn Mower
Mean Green is pushing the envelope further with a 74-inch deck on its flagship EVO ZTR. It delivers an impressive cutting width and day-long 8-hour max runtime. Combined with a 13 MPH top speed and 37 HP equivalent power, this is the battery-powered riding mower to get when you have a lot of property to cut.
There are a lot of accessories to choose from—including a solar canopy! Mean Green certainly lets you customize the mower to suit your particular commercial needs.
All of this innovation comes at a cost, though. You’re looking at a minimum of 28,500 to get in and closing in on 35,000 if you want the most runtime. That’s before you add accessories.
Best Budget Cordless Lawn Mower
EGO 56V 21-inch Self-Propelled Mower LM2102SP
If you’re shopping with a sub-400 budget, you don’t have access to the top-tier mowers, but you’re still in a range that has quality options. You can find budget self-propelled models in this price range, but we suggest stepping up in overall quality with the EGO LM2101 push mower.
It has a 5.0Ah battery that can run up to 45 minutes and covers a 1/4-acre lot well. You get single-point height adjustments, 3-in-1 discharge options, and vertical storage with a better build than most mowers in the same price range. When it comes to getting the best value battery-powered lawn mower, this is it.
Price: 399 with 5.0Ah battery and charger
Best Battery-Powered Lawn Mower: Options From Brands We Trust
Best DeWALT Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
DeWALT made some big improvements from its first-generation 2 x 20V self-propelled mower to the second. The DeWALT DCMWSP244 has far better runtime, low noise levels (even for cordless), and the build is sturdy. There are still some quirks in this one, though, and it’s not for everyone.
Price: 599 with two 10.0Ah batteries and charger.
Best Greenworks Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
If you like the design of the Greenworks 60V 25-inch mower, but don’t have a ton of lawn to maintain or want a smaller storage footprint, check out the Greenworks 60V 21-inch self-propelled mower. It’s effectively the same foundation and uses a single blade.
Price: 749.99 with two 4.0Ah batteries and a dual-port Rapid charger
Best Echo Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
Echo phased out its 58V battery lineup in favor of a completely new 56V eForce line (sorry, the old batteries are not compatible with the new tools) and that includes the revised Echo DLM-2100 lawn mower. This 21-inch self-propelled mower includes a 5.0Ah battery and charger in the kit.
Best EGO Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
For all the reasons we mentioned above and more, the EGO Select Cut XP is our pick for the best EGO battery-powered lawn mower.
Price: 549 bare, 849 with a 10.0Ah battery and Rapid charger
Best HART Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
HART stepped up big-time in the lawn and garden department this year with several new mowers to choose from. Our favorite is the HART 40V brushless 21-inch self-propelled mower (HLPM061US) for several reasons. It’s stronger and runs longer thanks to the pair of 6.0Ah batteries in the kit. It has a full 3-in-1 mulching/bagging/side discharge design, stores vertically, and has a beefier build than previous HART models. To top it all off, this one is made in the USA using global materials.
Price: 598 with two 6.0Ah batteries and a Rapid charger
Best Husqvarna Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
The Husqvarna 20-inch self-propelled lawn mower features a commercial-grade aluminum deck as well as a front bar to protect the battery/motor housing. The W520i notably is compatible with a battery backpack. It doesn’t fit as cleanly as the Makita ConnectX mower since you still need to run an adapter into the battery slots, but it does take the weight off of your back and keep you from being tethered. It also has a higher-than-normal cutting range that tops out at 4.5 inches.
Best Kobalt Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
Kobalt is quietly still making excellent battery-powered lawn mowers and the 80V line is where its performance peaks. The Kobalt 80V 21-inch mower (a rear-wheel-drive system) sports an upgrade to the handle system that makes folding it forward for vertical storage easier. In addition to its excellent cutting power, Kobalt also makes efficient use of its batteries, running up to 60 minutes with a 6.0Ah battery. Plus, its high 4 1/8-inch top cutting height is great for tall grass species and reclaiming neglected areas.
Price: 749 with two 4.0Ah batteries and a charger
Best Makita Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
If Makita’s ConnectX lawn mower is a little too high-priced for your budget, give the Makita XML08 lawn mower a shot. It has a very similar commercial-grade build and feature set while running on the 18V X2 (36V) system that’s compatible with Makita’s largest line of OPE and power tools. With room onboard for four batteries, you can still cover a decent area. Oddly, it’s not uncommon for the four-battery kit to be priced less than the bare tool.
Price: 899 (look for discounts) with four 5.0Ah batteries and dual-port Rapid charger
Best Milwaukee Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
There’s only one Milwaukee M18 FUEL lawn mower, but it’s a good one! Check out more in our review (click the headline) or read our summary above.
Price: 1099 with two 12.0Ah batteries and a dual-port Rapid charger
Best Ryobi Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
For the reasons we stated earlier, the Ryobi 40V HP Brushless CrossCut mower is their top battery-powered model currently.
Price: 799 with two 6.0Ah batteries and a Rapid charger
Best Skil Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
We see a lot of value with the Skil 40V self-propelled lawn mower. Running on the stronger PWRCore 40 line, this brushless mower has excellent all-around performance and cut-quality characteristics compared to others in the same price range. If you’re shopping in the sub-500 class, Skil has the best budget self-propelled lawn mower available.
Price: 399.99 with a 5.0Ah battery and Rapid charger
Best STIHL Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
STIHL has been a little more cautious in entering the battery-powered lawn mower market and upgraded the line with a couple of self-propelled models. Of the two available, the STIHL RMA 510 V is your top performer. It features a 21-inch steel deck (20-inch blade) with a tougher build than the 460 series and its 3.9-inch top cutting height is appropriate for taller grass species. The one downside is that this model runs through batteries quickly compared to other self-propelled mowers.
Price: 509.99 bare, 729.99 with AP 300 battery and charger
Best Toro Battery-Powered Lawn Mower
The first-generation Toro Flex Force 60V lawn mowers were excellent, though not quite able to compete with the best of the best. A new generation of 60V Max Super Recycler 21-inch self-propelled mowers is on its way with a sleek black color scheme and the promise of serious upgrades. The two models (one with and one without headlights) FOCUS on high airflow, excellent power, a Flex Handle suspension system, and a durable build. Along with all that improvement comes a steeper price tag, though.
Price: 649 bare, 799 with 7.5Ah battery and charger
Why You Can Trust OPE Reviews
Ever check out a “review” site and you can’t tell if they actually tested the tools or if they’re just “recommending” the Amazon top sellers? That’s not us. We won’t recommend anything unless we’d actually use it ourselves and we don’t really care who the primary retailer is. It’s all about giving you a legitimate recommendation and our honest opinion of each product.
We’ve been in business since 2016 covering outdoor power equipment, writing reviews, and reporting on industry news in the landscaping, heavy equipment, and lawn care industries. Our Pro reviewers have lots of experience in these fields as well as the skills and experience to know whether these products can perform well on the job.
Each year, our team reviews and gets their hands on hundreds of additional landscaping tools and equipment at our shop and at media events and trade shows.
We work with dozens of professionals around the United States who review products for us on real job sites and consult with us on testing methods, categories, and weighting.
Getting the Best Lawn Mower Cut Quality
Cutting the lawn has more purpose than making tall grass short. It’s about crafting landscapes that bring pride, landscapes that host parties and landscapes that literally work for you. By delivering superior cut quality for your clients, your reputation as a sharp landscaper will help retain current clients and be a selling point for new ones.
Read the following tips to learn how to get the sharpest looking landscapes. On a zero turn lawn mower, there are both adjustments and techniques landscapers can make and perform to ensure a smooth, even and appealing result with each mowing.
Adjust lawn mower deck pitch
Fine tuning a mower deck enables the aerodynamic design of the cutting chamber to lift grass, cut it evenly and discharge it effectively.
What is mower deck pitch?
Lawn mower deck pitch, or sometimes referred to as, “rake,” is the tilt of the mower deck from front to back. Forward deck pitch creates an air seal at the front of the deck when the blades are rotating. This seal limits air entry into the cutting chamber to the rear of the deck, allowing the aerodynamic design of a Gravely lawn mower deck to maximize grass lift and cut evenly. This design results in a superior cut quality and an even discharge that’s less likely to clump.
For most effective results, a lawn mower deck should have a pitch, or height difference of 1/8-inch to 1/2-inch between the front of the deck to the back of the deck. Naturally, this makes the sweet spot about 1/4-inch of pitch, depending on the mower model. In any case, the front of the deck should be pitched lower than the deck rear. Be careful not to pitch too much that you start scalping lawns.
How to adjust lawn mower pitch
All Gravely decks are built so their owners can adjust deck pitch quickly and easily. There’s no special tools or mechanical training required to complete this procedure, either. Just a couple wrenches and a few pieces of hardware. Before you begin, park the mower on a flat, level surface, stop the engine, remove the key, check that the tire pressures are equal and grab a tape measure.
Deck pitch can be adjusted by lowering the front of the deck, raising the rear of the deck or a combination of both. Be sure to make adjustments so that the distances of your final measurements at the front of the deck accurately reflect the cutting height of 3.5 inches that was set earlier.
- Loosen jam nuts against deck lift links.
- Turn adjustment bolts counterclockwise.
- Retake measurements and continue adjustment, if necessary.
- Tighten jam nuts against deck lift links.
- Loosen jam nuts against deck lift links.
- Turn adjustment bolts clockwise.
- Retake measurements and continue adjustment, if necessary.
- Tighten jam nuts against deck lift links.
After pitch adjustment is complete, check deck level.
Leveling your mower deck
Level the mower deck to ensure grass cutting height is even across the width of the deck. This will help ensure a smooth and seamless side-by-side blend between each row of freshly cut grass.
What is lawn mower deck leveling?
This is easier to understand than deck pitch. Deck leveling is simply making the cutting height on the left side of the deck even with the cutting height on the right side of the deck. In all cases, decks should be level with as little variance between each side of the cutting deck as possible. No variance between the left and right side of the deck is best.
How to level the mower deck
Leveling a Gravely lawn mower deck is done the same way as pitching a Gravely mower deck, except it’s adjusting the deck height from side to side, not back to front. Same components and tools with pitching a mower deck, and as before, start with the unit parked on a flat, level surface, inflate the tires to specification and grab a tape measure.
How to level your lawn mower deck
- Loosen jam nuts against deck lift links.
- Turn adjustment bolts clockwise.
- Retake measurements and continue adjustment, if necessary.
- Tighten jam nuts against deck lift links.
How to sharpen lawn mower blades
Same as with dull knives or scissors – they don’t cut efficiently and results in duplicate effort. On a mower, dull blades leave behind stragglers and require the terribly inefficient practice of mowing the same rows twice.
Dull blades may require a total replacement, which isn’t bad since new blades are relatively cheap and easy to replace. However, if the blades aren’t worn too far, they can be sharpened without spending money on new blades. Be aware that blades should not be sharpened if more than a half-inch of the blade material is worn away (by previous sharpening or wear) or if the air lift is eroded. If the air lift is eroded, blades can no longer lift grass effectively and cut evenly. Blades that are bent or broken should be discarded.
- Read the safety instructions and the procedure instructions in the unit’s operator’s manual.
- Remove the mower deck according to the instructions in the operator’s manual.
- Remove the blades according to the instructions in the operator’s manual.
- File or grind an equal amount of blade material from each cutting edge until sharp. Do not change angle of cutting edge or round the corner of the blade.
- Slide the blade onto an unthreaded bolt and hold the bolt horizontally. Position the blade horizontally and check for blade balance. This is critical. If the blade moves, sharpen the heavy end until the blade remains balanced in a horizontal position on the unthreaded bolt.
- When the blade is sharpened and balanced adequately, reinstall it under the mower deck and torque it to the specification listed in the operator’s manual.
- Reinstall the mower deck.
Cleaning your mower deck
Mower decks packed with grass clippings, dirt and debris can damage your mower, affect cut quality and hurt lawns. Grass, dirt and debris holds moisture that corrodes bare metal on the spindles and mower blades, weakening them. Additionally, grass-packed cutting decks can harbor fungi and bacteria that can spread to other lawns and damage them.
Grass buildup around the discharge area can prevent clippings from discharging evenly and could lead to clumping. Grass buildup under the deck can also affect the aerodynamics of the cutting chamber, disrupt the air lift under the deck (detailed in What is mower deck pitch?) and affect the cut quality.
Good lawn mowing techniques
Sometimes, getting a better cut quality can be achieved by breaking a few bad habits like mowing too fast, mowing in the same pattern and cutting grass too short.
Why you shouldn’t mow too fast
For busy landscapers, efficiency is important. And while landscapers will find many creative ways to shave time off each job, patience on the jobsite yields better results. Driving faster than the mower blades and deck can process overwhelms the deck and leaves behind stragglers and clumping. Slowing down the drive speed of a mower allows the blades enough time to lift, cut and discharge grass clippings evenly.
Why you should mow in different patterns
After mowing the same properties, landscapers will learn the best way to navigate through their clients’ properties and will sometimes stick to one efficient mowing pattern. However, mowing in the same pattern is bad for lawns.
Grass is like hair. If it’s accustomed to being pushed in the same direction, it learns which way to fall. After mowing in the same paths cut after cut, grass falls to one direction and doesn’t stand straight up, making it more difficult for the mower to lift the grass and cut it evenly.
Additionally, mowing in the same pattern creates ruts. The weight of a mower driving over the same rows with each mowing causes the soil under a mower’s wheels to become compacted. As soil compacts, it restricts water, air and nutrients from reaching grass roots, leading to grass discoloration in those mower tracks.
To avoid these issues, landscapers should mow in a different pattern that crisscrosses the pattern of the previous mowing.
Why you shouldn’t cut grass too short
Grass that’s kept longer grows healthier.
Grass that’s cut too short becomes stressed because it uses its energy re-growing what was just cut instead of growing its root system. Longer grass makes healthier lawns because longer grass has deeper root systems which access moisture and nutrients more effectively. Additionally, longer grass helps prevent the ability for weeds to take hold in the soil and germinate because tall grass blocks sunlight from those weeds.
Landscapers should cut no more than one-third of the length of grass with each mowing.
Best mowers for good cut quality
Performing service and adjustments on any lawn mower makes a big difference in cut quality, but you’ll never get the best cutting quality without having the right equipment. Consumers have numerous choices in a commercial lawn mower, but they’re not built alike.
Gravely commercial lawn mowers are designed for landscapers. Not only is a Gravely durable, reliable and comfortable, but each Gravely is designed to deliver superior cutting results.
Strong deck stability
As opposed to decks that shake excessively when cutting, Gravely decks are sturdy and move with the contours of each landscape, ensuring an even cut.
Cutting deck dimensions
The deep depth of a fully fabricated Gravely commercial mower deck processes greater volumes of grass faster with reduced need to compromise speed for quality on the jobsite.
Superior deck aerodynamics
Grass is lifted and discharged evenly and effectively, meaning there’s less chance for stragglers and clumping.
Constant belt tension
Gravely’s trademarked constant belt tension, or CBT, applies the same tension to a brand new mower belt than it does to an older, stretched mower belt. This ensures consistent blade tip speed and cutting results throughout the life of the belt, even as it wears.
Lawn mower dealers near me
Ready to learn more about the machines that have been shaping the American landscape for over a century? Stop by your local Gravely dealer to explore Gravely’s full product lineup and to get replacement parts like belts, blades and more. Add a Gravely lawn striper kit this season to enhance each lawn by giving it that professional, finished look.
Is Your Lawn Mower Not Cutting Low Enough? Here’s Why
Have you ever spent a decent amount of time on your day of mowing your lawn, looking over it when you’re all done, and wonder if you actually mowed at all?
Yes, it’s something that should never happen but does every once and a while. But one thing you’re sure of is the mower does work. It has power. You didn’t just push the mower around the lawn silently and think you actually mowed.
Let’s assume you’ve eliminated all of that as a possibility.
So, why does the grass look like it’s only a little shorter if not the same exact height?
Lucky for you, we’ve got a couple of reasons below that may explain the issue with your mowing height and how you can get it cut lower.
Is Your Grass Wet?
Wait a minute. This isn’t the question you wanted an answer to. You wanted to know why your mower isn’t cutting low enough.
Well, to answer that question, let’s first take a look at the actual condition of your grass. The first condition to examine is whether it’s wet or dry?
It’s a good question to ask because the grass will cut a lot differently when it’s wet compared to when it’s dry. If you’re doubting this, think of wet hair. It’s always easier to comb when it’s wet, right? But unless you put some product in there, what tends to happen to hair as it dries?
That’s right, it doesn’t stay in the exact same place as when it was wet. It’s not as heavy because it’s no longer absorbing moisture. And as it dries, it tends to stick up, maybe become puffier, depending on your genetics.
The same goes for a lawn. Grass that is wet, and maybe taller than normal, will lay down easier as it’s rolled over by a mower.
You’re essentially pushing the grass down as you mow, rather than cutting the way you’re expecting. Then, when the grass dries, it sticks back up and you wonder if you ever mowed at all.
So, tip number one is don’t mow when the grass is wet. Wait until it dries and see how the grass height looks after a couple of passes with the mower.
Adjust Your Mower’s Wheels
You might think this should have been the first tip. However, since wet conditions are also a big safety concern, it’s seemed like the best one to do first.
Of course, one of the easiest things to address when it comes to how low your mower is cutting is to adjust the wheel height. Sounds simple enough and, the great thing is, it is.
Each of your mower’s wheels should have its own independent height adjuster if it’s gas powered. If it’s an electric mower, there is usually one height adjuster on the rear of the mower. This adjusts the rear wheels while also adjusting the angle of the mower deck at the same time.
Side note: Many electric mowers tend to have a mower deck that’s always angled down more at the front to allow less air flow and debris under the mower deck during operation. Remember, electric mowers don’t necessarily have the rugged power of a gas mower when it comes to taking a beating.
Take a look at the wheels and make sure they’re all set to the same height to avoid making your lawn look like a series of grass step terraces.
Unless that’s the look you’re going for.
Before you hold your hands up and say you never adjust the height of your wheels, take a look at them anyway. Maybe you’ve never adjusted their heights but have you recently let someone else mow or borrow your mower? Do you have gremlins in your garage that like to play pranks on you?
In all seriousness, it won’t hurt to check the wheels’ heights and adjust them lower if you can. Problem solved, right?
Unless they’re already set low and you’re still not getting low cut grass. In that case, it’s time to…
Inspect the Mower Blade and Deck
Yes, it’s come to this. Time to inspect the mower blade and deck for damage. Believe it or not, it doesn’t take much damage to affect how well your mower performs.
In this case, damage can impact more than grass height. Damage can do all kinds of interesting things to the quality of your cutting. It can cut unevenly, leave odd patterns on your lawn, or even take out big chunks of turf.
If you don’t see any damage when inspecting the blades and mower deck, check to make sure both are tight and secured the way the manufacturer recommends. Also, look for anything around the blades that might impede or impact its designed rotation. This could be things like clumps of grass or other debris.
The main thing here is to look for anything that would affect the overall mowing efficiency of your equipment, which includes not cutting at the height it should be.
If you do find damage, replace the items that are damaged. If you find debris, clear it out. Once you’re done with either or both, perform an operational check and see how the mower’s cutting height is now.
Are You Using the Same Mowing Pattern?
This may sound like an odd question but are you a creature of habit that prefers to mow their yard the same way every time? In other words, do you go in the same direction across your lawn each time you mow?
If you do, you’re encouraging the grass to grow at the same angles after each mow. This can lead to the grass also bending to the mower, if you will, each time you mow.
To put it another way, if you shave with the grain, you’ll never remove as much hair as if you shave against the grain.
So, for your lawn, try to change the direction you mow at least every other time. If you go one way, reverse it and go the other the next time. This will actually improve growth quality and ensure you’re getting the height you’re looking for.
Is Your Grass Really Tall?
Your grass doesn’t have to be forbidden jungle tall. than a few inches taller than what you might consider normal is enough.
If it is tall as described, did you have your mower set at a short height and try to plow into the grass, hoping to cut it all down in one session?
This is a course of action that is not advised. Why?
Well, it’s kind of the reason it’s a bad idea to mow wet grass. With tall grass, you’re trying to get your mower to cut more volume at the same rate it would with shorter grass. By increasing the volume of grass the blades have to contend with, you can overload your mower, cause poor quality cuts, and stall your mower out altogether.
If this is the case, then yes, you won’t cut low enough with the expected efficiency as you want.
The better approach to mowing tall grass is to do it over multiple days with your mower set at various heights. For the first day, start with a higher blade setting, mow the lawn, and then let it rest. Come back a day or two later, lower the blade setting a little, and mow again. Repeat another day or two later with a lower height.
Doing it this way is like a barber slowly cutting your long hair rather than hitting you with the razor from the get-go. This promotes a healthier cut for your lawn, as well, allowing the grass to recover better. It also prevents premature dry out compared to if you went too short right away.
Lawn mowers should cut at the height they’re expected to cut based on their design and the design features they’re built with. However, there are several things that can impact the actual height your grass ends up at.
Thankfully, there are also ways to correct those things so you’re getting the height you want without too much trouble.
Hi there! I’m Craig, and I’m the founder of Appliance Analysts. When it comes to appliances and anything electrical, I’ve always loved opening things up, figuring out how they work, and fixing them. This website is where I share free advice from myself and our experts to help our readers solve their appliance/HVAC problems and save money. Read more
Hi there! My name’s Craig, and I started Appliance Analysts back in 2017.
My mission is to help our readers solve appliance-related issues without paying through the nose for contractors or a whole new model. I’m joining up with experts from across the HVAC, Appliance Repair, DIY industries to share free expert advice that will save you time, stress, and money.