Stiftung Warentest checks cordless lawnmowers
The lawnmower does not have to be a loud and smelly petrol engine. You can also master the lawn with an electric motor. But if he needs a power cord, you are restricted in your work. The wireless cordless lawn mower can help – provided the performance is right. Stiftung Warentest hat 11 Battery pack- Lawnmower tested. The test winner was the Einhell GE-CM 43 Li M and with a price of around 340 Euro it is comparatively cheap. There are still alternatives among the models with different cutting widths. Replacement and replacement batteries are an additional cost.
The test was carried out by Stiftung Warentest and was published in issue 4 / 2019 released.
You can now find almost all tools in one battery -Variant, the lawn mower is no exception. To do this, of course, there has to be enough power in the electric motor and the battery must deliver the required power. The cordless lawn mowers do a solid job. The testers took a tennis court with 250 Square meters as a guideline, such a lawn can cope with almost all devices in the test – but there is often a lack of thoroughness. The handling also reveals some noticeable differences.
The result: Of the 11 Cordless lawnmowers in the test, of which two models are identical, only two achieved the overall rating of “good”. Both are devices with cutting widths up to 43 centimeters. Of the four devices with larger cutting widths, none goes beyond the “satisfactory” rating. When it comes to the most important criterion, mowing, the majority of cordless lawnmowers do well, but other factors lead to devaluations. Five models received the “satisfactory” quality assessment, one was “sufficient”. Two devices fail with the mark “poor”, a battery-powered lawn mower cannot be rated in one section and therefore does not get a grade.
The reading You in our article: We present the recommendations from the test first in an overview and then in detail. Then we give you a price estimate and explain the test procedure of Stiftung Warentest. You will also learn more about cordless lawn mowers and what you should look out for when buying them. Finally, we answer open questions.
Cordless Lawn Mower test winner
These are the best cordless lawnmowers according to Stiftung Warentest
1st place: Einhell GE-CM 43 Li M
- Reliable mowing
- Best handling in the test
- Very good durability and safety
- Range could be better
- A little loud noise
- Two batteries required for operation
The Einhell GE-CM 43 Li M achieved the best overall rating in the test: 2.3 (good). When mowing proves the cordless lawn mower as solid. The testers give it a “still good” (2.5) rating, but at least with dry grass the Einhell has no trouble, the cut quality is also good here. You can cut moist and high lawn satisfactorily, the grass container is also ok. The cordless lawn mower is used for 600 square meter area recommended, but in the test he only manages with two batteries 246 Square meters of lawn. This is generally satisfactory, but it is better.
The handling the Einhell is the best in the test, for a consistently good performance there is a grade of 2.2. The instructions are understandable, the assembly works. The lawnmower is smooth and easy to control, the collecting container works reliably. There are two chargers for the two batteries and the charging time is one of the best in the test. The durability from Mowers and batteries are even very good (1.5), as is the security (1.3). In the area environment and health there is the grade “satisfactory” (2.9). The testers found no pollutants, but are disturbed by the somewhat loud operating noise.
The for the cutting width 43 centimeters laid out Einhell GE-CM 43 Li M you get for around 340 Euro. That is a comparatively low price and a great price-performance ratio. An additional Power-X-Change battery that also fits in other Einhell devices , there is for around 50 Euro.
2nd place: Sabo 40 – Accu
- Cuts dry and tall grass well
- Quiet in operation
- Very good durability and security
- Cut quality could be better
- Battery difficult to remove
- Adjusting the height is difficult
The Sabo 40 – Accu is the second cordless lawnmower in the test with the quality rating good (2.4). The mowing does overall he’s not quite as good as the test winner. The Sabo not only copes well with dry grass, but also with tall stalks, but the cut quality could be better. The individual battery coped in the test 274 Square meters of space, which is even slightly more than the manufacturer specifies. The testers ultimately rate the mowing with a grade of 2.7 (satisfactory).
The Sabo is not quite as comfortable as the test winner, so adjusting the height is a bit difficult. In general, the handling good (2.4). The assembly is simple, the catch container fits. The battery is a bit difficult to remove and takes longer to charge. At durability from Mower and battery as well as the devices – safety the first and second place are similar: the Sabo is also very good here with the marks 1.5 and 1.3. In the category Environment and Health it is even better (rating 2.2): no pollutants found and the Sabo is pleasantly quiet during operation.
under the cordless lawnmowers up to the cutting width 43 centimeters (here: 40 centimeters) is the Sabo 40 – Accu the most expensive device in the test: you pay round 660 Euro. The battery is also not part of a tool system, you can only get a replacement battery from a specialist dealer for around 170 Euro.
Further recommendations from the tests
The cordless lawnmower with wheel drive and cutting widths up to 47 Centimeters all cut well when mowing, but none of the devices go beyond the overall rating of “satisfactory”. The best model of the large cordless lawn mower is the Stihl RMA 448 TC , this is difficult to get in a set with the batteries. For the device alone without batteries you pay around 500 Euro.
Stiftung Warentest also conducted in the year 2017 through a test of cordless lawnmowers. The former test winner, the Viking MA 339 C, but is now out of stock. Also the runner-up, the Bosch Rotak model 37 LI, is no longer in this form available. But you get the successor model Bosch Rotak 370 LI for round 380 Euro, the capacity of the batteries was slightly reduced.
How much do I have to spend on a good cordless lawn mower?
You can already get a reasonably usable cordless lawn mower for under 200 Euro – but without battery. Most of the time, the devices can only cope with dry grass. For a good mowing performance you have to 400 Euro and upwards , Here, the handling is usually better and batteries and charger are included. Devices that really deal with all types of lawn can sometimes 600 euros. It gets even more expensive with larger cordless lawnmowers, i.e. with cutting widths above 43 centimeters. Here you sometimes pay 800 Euros and more. The top recommendation in the test by Stiftung Warentest costs around 340 Euro, which is also a great price-performance ratio. The cheaper devices in the test only score moderately, they disappoint when mowing and also when handling.
Cordless lawnmower in the test: How does Stiftung Warentest evaluate it?
Stiftung Warentest checks how effectively the cordless lawn mower can cope with different conditions of the lawn. You have to cut off dry, damp and tall grass . The overall impression is evaluated, with dry grass the cut quality and generally the range with one charge of the batteries . The testers also take a close look at the grass catcher. Overall, the rating in the mowing category accounts for half of the overall grade.
Also important is the Handling the device . This affects not only driving and operating the cordless lawn mower, but also the comprehensibility of the instructions for use and the installation of the device. Part of the assessment is also the battery change and charging time . Lawnmowers and batteries must prove their durability in the long-term test. To do this, use the mower 300 Runs simulated and tested the vibration resistance. The battery must 400 Go through charging cycles.
The rating in the category security results from the mechanical and electrical testing. The sub-area Health and Environment finally includes the measurement of the operating noise and the test for pollutants such as plasticizers in the handles.
Significantly low ratings in the categories result in devaluations in the overall grade. The quality assessment of the testers takes the form of a school grade. If a sub-area evaluation is not possible, an overall grade will not be awarded.
What types of cordless lawn mowers are there?
Lawnmowers for the garden are usually so-called rotary mower . A rapidly rotating cutter bar sits in the housing, which is open at the bottom, and cuts off the blades of grass. The generated air flow blows the stalks at the same time in a catch container where they are collected. The cutting height can be set on most lawnmowers , so that you can determine the height of the lawn yourself. The required power is supplied either by a petrol or an electric motor . The latter, in turn, is powered either by a power cord, which limits the radius of action, or the lawnmower has one or more batteries. So you have freedom of movement, but only a limited term. The electric models are quieter and do not produce any exhaust fumes.
The way in which the cordless lawnmowers work does not differ from one another, but they do do in size. The smallest and most compact devices have a cutting width of 33 centimeters , the medium-sized lawn mowers are included with up to 43 centimeters . With increasing size, the devices become heavier and less easy to drive. Therefore, models with internal forces over 43 centimeters usually equipped with an electric wheel drive that makes work easier. The cordless lawnmowers with wheel drive, however, require additional battery power and are significantly more expensive.
The alternatives to the lawnmower with a collecting container that collects the straws are the Devices for mulching : The cut stalks remain open lie in the meadow and serve as fertilizer there. This is less suitable for many useful lawns, especially if you are actively in the garden. However, if you want to create a healthy biotope and promote biodiversity, mulching is the right choice.
What should I look out for when buying a cordless lawn mower?
- Cutting width & cutting height
The larger the cutting width, the faster you can mow the grass areas. Cordless lawn mowers are also available with particularly small cutting widths of only 33 centimeters, if you really only work the front yard. Models with cutting widths up to 43) centimeters are sufficient for most gardens. You really only need cordless lawn mowers with larger cutting widths if you have to mow sports fields. You can usually set the cutting height on the device. The levels range from about 25 millimeters height of grass up to about 100 millimeters if you want it to look wilder. There are no large variations in this area, but you can sometimes find models with a particularly low cutting height. Another question is whether the blades of grass are cut cleanly enough.
- type of lawn
The simplest requirement for cordless lawn mowers is dry, medium-high lawn. Basically, all devices can cope with this. The only difference is whether the edges are cut cleanly or the blades of grass are picked off uncleanly. Fringes turn ugly brown after mowing. But even with tall grass, some cordless lawn mowers can do better than others. This can usually only be estimated in a practical test, the details of the cutting heights do not provide any reliable information. Wet grass is a special challenge. This is more difficult to cut off due to the moisture, and the blades of grass stick together and block the catch container. Good cordless lawn mowers can still cope with this, as can be seen in operation.
- Batteries & Range
One or more batteries in the device provide the motor with sufficient power for work. One battery is sufficient for cordless lawnmowers with a smaller cutting width. In larger models, the wheel drive is also operated electrically in addition to the mower. Because of the increased demand for power, these lawnmowers have two batteries. Their capacity is often 4 amp hours, but you can also get copies with more or less capacity. Many manufacturers specify a recommended area for their devices, for example 600 square meters of lawn. But this is usually the optimal case, in practice a battery charge is often only enough for half the area. If the cordless lawn mower is above 250 square meter area is a good value. You need a charger for the battery and you have to remove it from the lawnmower to charge it. It doesn't always work effortlessly. It is practical if they are standard batteries that fit into all devices of the manufacturer.
One of the advantages of electric lawnmowers is that they are not as loud in operation as lawnmowers with an internal combustion engine. The difference is not always really satisfactory, some cordless lawnmowers are as loud as a small petrol engine. The electric models do not reach the legal limit, which is depending on the size between 94 and 103 decibels, but all over 90 Decibels are actually too loud. An operating noise under 88 Decibels are ideal, then you can even work with them at a late hour. Only a few cordless lawnmowers are really so quiet in practice.
- Weight size
The dimensions and the weight of the cordless lawn mower depend primarily on its cutting width. Models with cutting widths of up to 43 Centimeters are about half a meter wide and weigh around 20 Kilogram. So the lawnmowers can still be driven quite well with muscle power. Models with a larger cutting width are more expansive and, above all, heavier. A weight of around 30 Kilogram is rather unwieldy on the lawn, therefore, the devices usually have an electric wheel drive that supports driving. This draws power from the battery, but can also be switched off. Cordless lawnmowers with wheel drive are more expensive.
Since cordless lawnmowers do not first have to be connected to the power or ignited, but are always ready to start when the battery is inserted, they need protection against being switched on accidentally. It usually comes in the form of a key or pen, which is inserted and turned over. Only then can the cordless lawn mower start driving. However, this protection does not always work as it should. For some models, the key just inserted is enough. This can lead to accidents if the lawn mower starts driving suddenly. You should therefore pay attention to security.
What is the best cutting height for the lawn?
If you really want to use your garden and not just want it to look beautiful, you should not cut the blades of grass too short. This damages the grass plants themselves and also makes the lawn generally vulnerable. Especially in hot weather in summer, the grass should not be less than 5 centimeters, because otherwise the surface could be burned. A normal length of 3 to 5 centimeters is normally recommended for grass. You can only cut shorter if it is a decorative lawn. For most lawnmowers, 2.5 centimeters is the lowest level anyway. Ideally, you should not let the lawn grow tall and then radically shorten it, but rather mow regularly and cut off a third of the length.
How do I care for my battery, knife block and catch container?
The lawn mower itself does not mind if it is stored in the shed or in the garage. The batteries are however, since somewhat more sensitive and if you want to ensure their longevity, you should at least protect them from frost . During the winter store The batteries ideally in the cool but weather-protected room and make sure that they do not discharge completely .
The knife block in the mower wears out over time and no longer cuts cleanly, making the lawn unsightly. The blades should be sharpened regularly , The knife cannot be easily removed or replaced on all models, in some cases you have to take the complete lawn mower to a specialist dealer.
Regularly empty the grass catcher after mowing. Nevertheless, you should also clean the underside of the device so that there are no blockages. The lawnmowers are easily accessible in different ways, often simply wiping is not enough.
Lawnmower alternatives and robotic lawnmowers
As an alternative to the battery version, the lawn mower with electric motor is also available with a cable. The cable lawnmower limits your freedom of movement, you don't have to worry about performance. As long as the power cord is plugged in, you can let off steam on the lawn. You drive with the conventional petrol lawnmower without cables and yet flexible. Its engine copes with almost all adversities of the lawn, but the devices are loud and produce exhaust gases.
The cylinder mower can be operated without a motor and only with muscle power. You push it over the lawn and the cut blades arranged horizontally in a spindle cut the blades of grass like scissors. With the devices, the lawn can be shortened particularly sharply, for example on sports or golf courses, but there must be no obstacles on the surface.
In contrast, there are new type of robotic lawnmower without your intervention. The compact devices with electric motors search for their own way and shorten the lawn to the desired length. However, the robotic lawnmowers do not have a collecting container, the cut blades remain as mulch on the ground. This can save you work in little used gardens.
The most important questions about cordless lawnmowers at a glance
Which cordless lawn mower is the best?
The best cordless lawn mower in the test is the Einhell GE-CM 43 Li M. It has a cutting width of 43 centimeters. The price of around 340 Euro is relatively cheap , The Sabo model 40 – Accu is also a reliable cordless lawn mower, but costs around 660 Euro relatively much.
Are cordless lawn mowers as good as petrol lawn mowers?
Cordless lawnmowers cope well with dry grass, the electric motor delivers enough power. The models mow differently with high or damp grass. Generally, cordless lawn mowers have advantages: They are less noisy than petrol models and do not produce any exhaust fumes.
Which cutting width need I?
The wider the cutting width of the cordless lawn mower, the faster you mow the lawn. You get models with cutting widths of 33 to 53 centimeters. Larger models are heavier and heavier and therefore need an extra wheel drive. 43 centimeters are enough for normal gardens.
What cutting height do I need?
Useful grass can be trimmed to a length between 3 and 5 centimeters. Cutting shorter will damage the grass plants. You can adjust the cutting height of the lawnmower and the levels range from 2.5 to over 10 centimeters. In hot weather you should leave the stalks longer.
What does mulching with a lawnmower mean?
Most lawn mowers have a collecting container in which the cut blades of grass are collected. This removes nutrients from the meadow. When mulching, the grass remains and serves as a fertilizer. If the mulch doesn't bother you, you can use it to promote biodiversity.