For years, using any kind of battery-powered yard tool was looked down upon in disdain by most guys because of one simple fact: They were wimpy. Even with the best electric lawn mower, you’d only mow a quarter of your yard before the battery crapped out. And electric chainsaws could only chew through 6-inch trees. Those aren’t appealing attributes for yard tools when you’ve got some big jobs on your hands.
But now we’re in the electric age. New technologies are yielding bigger capacities, higher voltages, brushless motors, and more useful features that let you ditch the pull cord and oil can. These new, powerful batteries and smarter electric motors not only make lawn chores quieter and cleaner—they finally match gas power to make weekend yard warriors effective and efficient.
The Best Electric Lawn Mower, Chainsaw, and Yard Tools for Greener Pastures
1. Stihl MSA 220 C-B
Of early battery-powered tools, chainsaws disappointed most, suited more to pruning than felling. Stihl’s 101⁄2-pound saw cuts just like gas for about 35 minutes on a charge, with enough power to drop a 24-inch-diameter tree. Weekend tree trimmers will appreciate the instant start—and neighbors won’t miss the rumble of your old idling saw.
2. Milwaukee M18 Fuel Blower
Don’t call this beast a leaf blower. Yeah, it’ll clear downed oak and maple leaves, but it can also blast debris out of the garage or snow off a windshield. The massive 8 amp-hour battery can crank out a 120-mph windstorm that reaches 15 feet away. At full power, expect 20 minutes of run time; adjust the throttle to dial back power and preserve the battery for lighter tasks.
3. Ryobi 40V HP Brushless Carbon Fiber String Trimmer
This versatile whacker’s brushless motor helps eke more run time from the battery—so you’ll likely need a lemonade break before it needs a recharge. Beyond weed trimming, a few twists of a shaft knob allow the addition of other (not included) chore-adapted attachments like a sweeper, snowblower or polesaw.
4. EGO Power+ 21” Select Cut XP Mower
EGO bolsters an already impressive cordless e-lawnmower by adding two blades—a big first that only gas mowers had before. Stacked blades mince clippings to help return nitrogen to soil. A self-propelled mode (adjustable from 1 to 3 mph walking speed) makes pushing this 56-volt mower a one-handed affair. Expect 75 minutes of run time per charge of the 10-amp battery.
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