We chose to compare gas vs battery-powered mowers and omitted corded electric mowers because the likelihood of running over the cord or blowing a circuit breaker is just too high.
Consider your lawn size:
Large lawns (over 14,000 sq ft)...A Gas mower is better to finish mowing in one shot.
Small to Medium lawns (0-14,000 sq ft)...A battery-powered mower that can run 20-45 minutes per battery charge is better suited here. Purchase an extra battery and keep it charged to double your mowing time.
Consider your terrain and maneuverability:
Battery-operated mowers are easiest to maneuver. At an average of 50 to 60lbs, they are fairly light and easy to maneuver on level terrain. Some of the newer battery models are also self-propelled, but this option usually reduces battery run time by about 1/3.
A gas mower can weigh in over 90lbs, which can make it difficult to push it up an incline unless it’s self-propelled.
Least noise pollution—Gas lawn mowers are the noisiest and emit around 95 decibels of racket—comparable to the sound of a motorcycle. Electric mowers (corded and battery operated) produce between 65 to 75 decibels—the sound of a washing machine running.
Most eco-friendly: Electric mowers create zero emissions, but the rechargeable batteries for contain lithium, the mining of which has been known to pollute water supplies. If going green is your top priority, a corded electric mower is likely to have the least impact on the environment. Fossil fuel powered gas mowers emit hydrocarbon gases into the air and require the storage of flammable gasoline.
All mowers should have their blades sharpened each spring to ensure that they leave a clean cut on grass blades. But gas engines require regular maintenance (changing air filters and spark plugs and checking oil levels.
Battery-operated mowers run anywhere from $275 to $800 or more, depending on whether they feature options such as self-propulsion. Gas mowers are among the most expensive, starting around $350 and as high as $850 or more for a self-propelled gas mower.
The expense of operating the mower:
Corded electric mowers will use $15-22/yr in electricity, depending on how often you mow. Battery-operated mowers will cost $11-18/yr in electricity to charge the batteries. Gas mowers use approximately $20-35 of gasoline per year, depending on how often you mow and the price per gallon of gasoline.
Choosing the right mower ultimately depends on the size of your yard, and whether you prefer sheer power over a more budget-friendly and eco-friendlier machine.
Note: Chet loves his new EGO battery operated mower.
20+ years of residential experience.