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Thread: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

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    Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I've been in my house for about 10 months now, the gardener that the previous owners were using came on board as soon as we moved in. In the past few months, I've started to re-think his services because all he literally does is, cut the grass, trim and do a little clean up. He rarely touches up some of the plants/trees around the house. I don't have a big front lawn, maybe at most a 20'x10' patch. The back yard is even smaller than that because of the pool, which I feel he just allows too much debris to get into. He charges me a $100 a month, for that amount he cuts the front every week, but only cuts the back every 2 weeks. I felt for the amount of grass I have and the amount of work he does, it's just not worth it. So I've decided to up-keep the grass, as I already trim the other plants/trees on my property and pretty much sweep/blow out all the deck/patio areas every other week.


    My question is, at this point, all I really need is a lawn mower with a catch bag and a weed whacker/string trimmer.


    As a kid, all I ever used was gas powered equipment, but being as I really don't have a lot of grass to cut, maybe electric would be better, I can see a pro in that, but I've been reading some reviews on Home Depot.com (where I plan on buying the equipment) and some folks are complaining about the batteries dying or not charging at all. I've been thinking about getting either a 40 volt or 18 volt Ryobi mower and trimmer with the same type of batteries.


    I also seen some Black & Decker corded electric mower/trimmer.




    Or, should I just go gas?
    Chris B.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    We have a 40v kobalt mower from Lowes and it is great. It has 2 batteries and no issue with DBs. We'll mow 1/4 acre or so with it sometimes. Works great, had it for a few years now. When we bought there were two power levels and we got the bigger one. But, we have lots of land and don't mow regularly sometimes so it gets abused a little.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    (By the way $100 is a bargain, compared to those of us in NJ.......at least my neighborhood )

    I pondered last year as I wanted to do most things myself (although I needed a bit more of heavy duty machinery) and my friends' feedback (owners of electric / gas machinery):
    1. Convenience / noise: electric
    2. Durability: gas (this can be argued as electric ones do have less moving parts / engine) and you are willing to clean out carb, change oil, etc periodically
    3. Maintenance: electric (virtually none)
    4. TOC: not sure but replacement batteries may be expensive (I am sure more than buying a new carburetor) and would think easier to fix gas machines
    5. Other considerations (environment, ease of use, etc.): electric (although I am not sure where all those LI batteries go )

    If I were to make a decision based on your property size, I would buy electric and use them for 6+ months to see how they perform. The worst case is you break even (assuming you spent around $600 for both machines) and sell them on craigslist then go to gas OR you like them..hopefully. On a side note, I tend to avoid Home Depot for small engine stuff (unless Honda brand) but electric ones may be different
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I bought the Ryobi 40v lawn mower and line trimmer a couple years ago and I have been very happy with them. There have been no problems with the batteries charging. The sales person at Home Depot tried to talk me out of buying the mower because he thought I would use both batteries before I finished mowing my lawn and he thought a corded mower would be better. That hasn't been a problem and I'm glad I didn't listen to him.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I don't know about California grass. In Florida, St Augustine is predominant and I think an electric just wouldn't be up to the job. This grass is thick and requires a powerful motor. What kind do you have?
    Dave S.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    Looking a little deeper, it seems that you have to buy the battery and charger separate!!

    I also have St. Augustine grass.
    Chris B.

    New house w/ 28 y/o I.G. 15k gal. pool/spa, Plaster, Hayward DE-480S Micro Clear Filter, Pentair Whisperflo wfe-4, 1HP (Main Pump), Hayward SP2815x20 (Pump for spa jets), Versa Pool Heater, Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, TF-100 Kit

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    Yeah, we don't have st Augustine. We have bermuda, fescue and lots of weeds. But, we also mow when it is close to a foot tall sometimes.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I bought a plug in electric push mower to get into those spaces the big riding mower will not fit around the house, it works great but does need a good quality 12 or 14 gauge power cord, not one of those cheap 16 gauge 100 ft cords. Mine is a Greenworks brand, bought from Amazon, I think the mower was about $130 2 or 3 years ago, I think mine is one of the 12 amp models (will check when I get to the house in a bit). It is nothing fancy, but it works, only issue cord management, to keep from running over the cord with the mower, I find I usually drape the cord over my shoulder to keep it away from the blades, also have a neon multicolored cord so it is easy to see.

    p.s. on other lawn equipment, lithium ion battery powered string trimmers are great for smaller jobs, much lighter and easier to handle than the gasoline powered models. The only only thing I think must be gasoline is leaf blowers the electric ones just don't have enough power to effectively clean stuff, they may blow off the dry leaves, but will not blow off caked on dirt like the gasoline powered blowers. I bought a 4 stroke Ryobi leaf blower last year and love it, none of that oil mixing like is required on the 2 stroke models. Only issue was getting it primed to start the first time.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    That's another reason why I'm considering electric, to get the same brand of equipment to utilize battery use with other tools.
    Chris B.

    New house w/ 28 y/o I.G. 15k gal. pool/spa, Plaster, Hayward DE-480S Micro Clear Filter, Pentair Whisperflo wfe-4, 1HP (Main Pump), Hayward SP2815x20 (Pump for spa jets), Versa Pool Heater, Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, TF-100 Kit

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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I have always found the battery compatibility game to be a losing game, the companies change up battery styles every couple of years then charge more for a replacement battery than the cost of the tool
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    Good point about the batteries!!
    Chris B.

    New house w/ 28 y/o I.G. 15k gal. pool/spa, Plaster, Hayward DE-480S Micro Clear Filter, Pentair Whisperflo wfe-4, 1HP (Main Pump), Hayward SP2815x20 (Pump for spa jets), Versa Pool Heater, Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, TF-100 Kit

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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    In Florida, St Augustine is predominant and I think an electric just wouldn't be up to the job. This grass is thick and requires a powerful motor. What kind do you have?
    Quote Originally Posted by bakerboy View Post
    I also have St. Augustine grass.
    Even though you may only have a small yard, I can imagine that you might be really disappointed with amount of work it will take to take care of your St Augustine grass with an electric mower. My 23hp gasoline mower struggles with my St Augustine if I wait longer than 4 or 5 days between mows.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    That's also what I'm afraid of, I've always "heard" that electric lawn equipment can not compare to gas powered, but I'm talking about looking into them 6 years ago when I bought my 1st house. I know the technology has improved over the years though.
    Chris B.

    New house w/ 28 y/o I.G. 15k gal. pool/spa, Plaster, Hayward DE-480S Micro Clear Filter, Pentair Whisperflo wfe-4, 1HP (Main Pump), Hayward SP2815x20 (Pump for spa jets), Versa Pool Heater, Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, TF-100 Kit

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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I did check and mine is a 20 inch 12 amp, 12 amps at 120V is about the expected draw of a 1HP electric motor, maybe 1.25HP. As a rule of thumb for things like air compressors, etc. you need twice the HP when running with a gasoline motor vs an electric motor. Either way mine has worked for what I have done with it, but I have not tried to cut knee high grass either.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    Thanks!

    What brand and model is it?
    Chris B.

    New house w/ 28 y/o I.G. 15k gal. pool/spa, Plaster, Hayward DE-480S Micro Clear Filter, Pentair Whisperflo wfe-4, 1HP (Main Pump), Hayward SP2815x20 (Pump for spa jets), Versa Pool Heater, Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, TF-100 Kit

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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    Two things come to mind: Electric mowers are usually quiet, Batteries can be rebuilt.

    - - - Updated - - -

    My neighbor has a Ryobi and we can talk while he is mowing.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    All the pluses and minuses are irrelevant if you cannot cut that St Augustine grass......it is quite dense.

    I would only buy electric if you could make a trial run and then be able to return it without penalty.
    Dave S.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I'll say this - I have an electric (Toro) leaf blower (yes, we do have yard debris in the desert!!) and a 4-stroke gas blower (Makita). I literally hate the Makita because it is a royal PITA to start up (despite what the sales literature says), my Toro actually creates a greater air flow which helps with the mesquite beans and I have to keep a can of gas lying around the house which, in the Arizona heat, is actually quite a hazard (so I only buy gas in very, very small quantities). The reason why I haven't thrown the Makita in the trash? Because sometimes you need to get places where a cord just won't reach. In my opinion, the battery powered stuff is just not up-to-snuff when it comes to a long day of yard work but I will cherish the day when they can do the job so I can ditch the can of gas, oil and endless extension cords....
    Matt
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I had a corded electric mower and it struggled if I waited a day or two too long. I thought it was be great because I lived in a town house and my lawn was the size of a postage stamp, but it was a pain to use and I always struggled keeping the cord from getting run over by the mower.

    Since I bought this home with a pool and huge yard (by DC standards), I hired someone to mow and trim. I sold my mower and don't regret it at all. I get a lot of debris in the pool, but his machine is a mulching mower and it throws clipping everywhere, but I get the benefit of keeping the nutrients in the lawn. My time is precious and I don't mind not having to worry about mowing. I also hired house cleaners and wish I would have done so sooner. More time for me to enjoy my pool and garden

    I purchased an corded electric leaf blower and it is weak. I thought it would help sweep the decks clean on the week that the lawn guy doesn't come, but it is faster to just use a regular broom. I think leaf blowers should be gas powered.

    I recently bought a battery operated hedge trimmer and it works great. It uses the same battery as my B&D electric drill.
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    Re: Lawn Equipment: Gas or Electric and why

    I will say this about my plug in electric mower, it does work good on the grass that grows around my blackberry bushes, which sometimes gets a bit on the high side, not knee deep, but close. These are narrow strips between the thornless blackberry plants where the riding mower will not fit so it does not have much time to bog down. Trying to continuously cut that deep of grass would probably be too much for it, but as it is it is just right.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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