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One of the main reasons people are apprehensive about switching to an electric mower is the battery. They have concerns about the performance and battery replacement costs. That’s why it’s so important to know how long electric lawn mower batteries will last.
Lifespan: Typically, individual electric lawnmower batteries last an average of 20,000 hours (three to six years.
Runtime: On average, an electric mower will run for 50 minutes on a fully charged battery or set of batteries.
This article will outline the average run-time and life expectancy of different lawn mower batteries. It’ll also explain how to find the mower with the most efficient batteries and provide tips on extending the life of both. Keep reading for more information.
Factors Determining Life Expectancy of Typical Lawn Mower Batteries
The life expectancy of your mower batteries depends on two main things.
First, it depends on the mower the battery is powering, with the two main categories being a riding mower versus a push mower.
A riding mower uses more resources than a push mower. This is because the mower not only has to mow the lawn, but it is fully self-propelled and is moving the weight of the rider. This limits the length of time the battery will mow in a single use and drains the batteries quicker over the lifespan of the battery.
The other factor that determines the life expectancy of your mower battery is the type of battery itself. Electric mowers can use lithium ion batteries or lead acid batteries. Lithium ion batteries typically cost a bit more but will last longer on average than lead acid batteries.
With that in mind, here’s what you can expect from different lawn mower batteries:
- Lithium-ion batteries for push mowers: 40-60 minutes/charge & three to six years lifespan
- Lithium-ion batteries for riding mowers: 40-90 minutes/charge & three to six years lifespan
- Lead acid batteries for push mowers: 30-50 minutes/charge & two to four years lifespan
- Lead acid batteries for riding mowers: 30-60 minutes/charge & one to four years lifespan
Picking a Mower With the Longest Lasting Batteries
A high-quality battery is key to a positive electric lawn mower experience. When shopping for an electric mower, be sure the models you consider have a high-quality lithium-ion battery as the power source. Also, look for a higher voltage.
A high-quality lithium-ion battery is simply going to last longer than a standard lead-ion battery. However, when buying a more expensive lawn mower, be sure you’re paying for more than just a brand name. Check reviews on the mower, explicitly looking for mentions of battery life or warranty claims on batteries.
When shopping, look at electric mowers on the higher end of the voltage range for the size you need. Battle Born Batteries describes the relationship between voltage and amount of power (source).
A higher voltage means you’ll be able to mow for a longer length of time. It also means the battery will hold a longer charge.
Unless your yard is tiny, you must shop for models that use two batteries simultaneously. These have a higher voltage, resulting in better performance and longer run time.
The extra power is also more forgiving if you go an additional few days between cuttings or experience an unseasonably active growing season.
Another best practice is to invest in an extra battery upfront. (If your mower takes two batteries to run, buy two additional batteries.)
Doing this will allow you to rotate between four batteries as you mow your yard rather than two. This distributes the usage to four batteries rather than two.
More importantly, if you mow and run your two batteries dry, you aren’t totally dead in the water waiting for the batteries to recharge.
One argument against electric mowers is that you can only mow “so much” on a single charge. Planning to deal with this issue up front will reduce your frustration considerably.
Also, consider the additional features of the mower and whether you need them. More bells and whistles mean more power drain on the mower.
For example, a self-propelled mower is attractive to many, but the self-propelled feature consumes more energy.
Be mindful of these features and consider whether you need them or will use them. The more energy required to run these features, the more it will cost you over time.
Buying a Mower With the Most Efficient Engine Will Increase Battery Life
In many ways, buying an electric lawn mower is no different than shopping for a gas-powered one. You want a mower that works well and uses fewer resources to accomplish the task. The only difference between the two mowers is the power source.
As with a gas-powered mower, an electric mower with a brushless motor performs better and more efficiently than a brushed motor and is less prone to downtime due to regular wear and tear. According to Bob Vila, a brushless motor has several notable advantages (source).
Thanks to its design, a brushless motor produces more power that is dedicated to the mowing task than a brushed motor. Furthermore, a brushless motor is also quieter and generally requires less preventative and corrective maintenance.
Shopping for and purchasing the most efficient brushless engine to propel your mower is an investment in the item’s longevity.
A less expensive item may work fine, but it likely won’t function as long and may be prone to more issues during its lifecycle that require replacement or repair. Taking that into account, they may not save you any money long-term.
Tips for Extending the Life of Your Mower and Batteries
One of the best ways to extend the life of your mower is to be mindful of when you use it. Mowers work much harder to cut damp or wet grass, so mowing when your yard is dry will reduce strain on the engine.
Also, it’s important to occasionally clean your mower deck. Doing so reduces the strain on the engine to turn the blades, which decreases the draw on your batteries.
Consider purchasing something like the Ultimate Mower Cleaning Tool (link to Amazon). It allows you to address flat and curved surfaces and is one of the best tools to clean the underside of your mower deck.
Last, remember to sharpen your mower blade at least twice each cutting season – more if the mower seems to be cutting grass unevenly.
A sharp mower blade cuts more cleanly, reducing strain on the machine and its batteries. Buying a spare blade and always having a sharp one on hand to swap out is a great way to keep your lawn maintenance on track.
Electric lawn mower batteries don’t have an unlimited lifespan, but with careful consideration, you can choose a mower that will function well for years to come.
With some additional investment, ongoing care of the mower, and adherence to a few best practices, you can do a lot to extend the lifespan of your electric lawn mower batteries.