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Which self propelled walk behind battery mower?

MS261CM

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My son and daughter in law just moved to an urban setting with a small house on a quarter acre. I'm looking for a battery mower to help them get started with maintenance. nobody knows the future but I would like to pick a battery system that is likely to be around for a while. DeWalt is off the table as 3 of 4 grounds maintenance I had failed early due to design or assembly errors. There isn't much point in using mower size batteries in a drill anyway.

I read a bit about the Husqvarna 322. It looks like a good machine but I read a couple digs about control ergonomics. I also read that the deck gets hung up on small bumps easily. The front yard has a tree with quite a few surface roots so that could be a problem.

I have a saw, hedge trimmer, pole saw, blower and a couple Stihl AK30 batteries. If compatibility with my tools mattered that would point to the Stihl 460.

My brand bias is that Stihl, Husqvarna and Echo make decent tools. Echo also has a competing mower.

I don't know much about Greenworks, EZ-GO? etc but someone here might.

Tool selection and product support life matter. He is rather mechanically inclined and could keep something running so long as parts support exists. Better yet if it doesn't break or wear out. They may eventually add a blower at this place. they are close enough that they could borrow hedge trimmer/pole saw/chainsaw from me when/if needed.

What say you?
 

RCBS

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I looked into the Echos a little and found that they are a shared platform with another brand that I cannot recall at the moment. Was looking to get in relatively 'cheap' and the Echo fit the bill in that category. Echo and longevity are usually close companions.

That's as much as I know about the battery poosh mowers thus far.
 

Wilhelm

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Get a 6+hp 4-stroke self propelled gasoline mower and call it a day - for a decade and more!

I have a 2008. one and it will go over and chew up anything, including ant and mole hills.
I hit a concrete water pipe last Saturday, no damage other than a slight dulling of the blade

Just saying, suit Yourself.
Good luck!
 

MS261CM

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I ended up buying a Stihl 460V. Looking at them side by side I suspect Stihl, Echo and Greenworks all come out of the same factory with adjustments to battery system, controls, trim and color.
 

MS261CM

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Get a 6+hp 4-stroke self propelled gasoline mower and call it a day - for a decade and more!

I have a 2008. one and it will go over and chew up anything, including ant and mole hills.
I hit a concrete water pipe last Saturday, no damage other than a slight dulling of the blade

Just saying, suit Yourself.
Good luck!
I gave the son what he wanted. I expect he'll be happy with it. To your point, I personally run a 1994 John Deere JX85. One pull starts and it's still running strong.
 

MS261CM

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But wait, there's more...

I mowed his old and new place with the little electric. It seemed to power its downsized blade well. It auto throttles up when it senses higher torque loads. It's quiet and cuts just fine. Dual ball bearing wheels, easy height adjust. What's not to like?

Well, that would be the self propel system.The speed adjust didn't work and was stuck on low. On rare occasion when I disengage the drive the transmission seemed to lock up. Jiggle the machine and things free up so I can turn. I saved the best for last... When the self propel was pulling up hills with a half full bag or better the machine would pop and buck as if... ummm... nylon gears were skipping teeth.

I just bought it 2 days ago so I took it back to the shop. They were very pleasant to deal with and suggested they would have the shop take a look. Being 2 days in use with multiple issues I said my preference would be to swap it out with the simpler machine. They smiled and responded lets get it done. I was pretty pleased with the response and attitude. I read of several failures of the Echo propulsion system which looks suspiciously similar. I went with propelled because my sons wife is rather petite and she wants to do the mowing. On the other hand she wins 50k trail races and occasionally also takes the mens division. I think she'll be ok without self propelled. After the swap I took the RMA460 (non V) back and went over controls and safety practices with her. The son's a mechanical engineer. He's the one I'll worry about.

You guys likely don't mess with little machines like this but thought I'd post my findings in case it can help anyone.
Small electric...Avoid self propelled.
 

Wilhelm

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Idiotic manufacturers!
Gasoline powered mowers they can provide reliable propulsion, even with multiple speeds/gears.
Battery powered propulsion becomes a unreliable novelty.

If the property is small and flat I guess a push mower is acceptable.
I personally hate mowing my yard, which takes 2-3 hours without breaks depending how tall the grass is, and I would hate it even more if my mower had no propulsion.
My yard is very uneven and sloped.

I hope the non-V works out more reliable than the V did!
 

Wilhelm

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I would not accept having a new machine/product that failed within 2 days fixed!
As a matter of fact, I wouldn't want a same model new replacement either.

Kinda a bad omen when a newly purchased brand name product fails before it looses its "new car smell"!
 

MS261CM

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I would not accept having a new machine/product that failed within 2 days fixed!
As a matter of fact, I wouldn't want a same model new replacement either.

Kinda a bad omen when a newly purchased brand name product fails before it looses its "new car smell"!
I agree Wilhelm. That's why I asked to swap models. The dealer was very good about it.

Fun fact - My JX85 5 speed transmission failed just out of warranty. The drive pulley is on top and the less than perfectly sealed bearing pressed into the housing below flush. Moisture collected there, leaked through and rusted the bearings out. The gears and shafts all cleaned up fine. I ordered stainless bearings with good seals, greased up the gearbox, popped the inner seals out and it's been running ever since. Oh, I also filed a drain path in the top of that recess.
Other than that, corrosion in the main jet had it running a little lean last year. A few passes of a copper wire filament through the jet and it's better than ever. Shtuff happens but still not too shabby for 30 years.

The electric made enough power and bagged reasonably well. It's direct drive brushless so not much else to worry about. Wheel bearings look good. I'll be mowing for them while they are out of the country for a few weeks. I have several Stihl tools on the same battery system and they've been good. I don't expect any more issues. I'll follow up if anything else happens.
 

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Get something you have good local warranty support for. A local big box store doesn't cut it.
 

Wilhelm

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I got some of the E-GO platform a few years back, very strong running stuff !
I have a defective EGO 6Amp battery pack, that's a beast.
I am going to salvage cells out of it, hopefully.
 

LAWN BOY

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In my humble opinion, self propel is not necessary on a cordless battery push mower, they are so light. I’m sorry I didn’t see this thread sooner. Congrats on the new Stihl! My grandma has many Echo cordless lawn tools, including the push mower with bagger and NO self propel. It is great! It’s been a good unit for 3 years now. In the past 5 years, 2 of her 6 Echo battery’s, 1 4.0 and 1 2.0, have gone bad, but Echo replaced them for free! We have nothing bad to say about the Echo lineup of outdoor power equipment. I personally don’t have an electric push mower yet, but when I do I think it’s gonna be a Stihl. Like you, I do not know much about EGO and those brands.
 

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I have a defective EGO 6Amp battery pack, that's a beast.
I am going to salvage cells out of it, hopefully.
I have done that with defective Echo batteries. They are regular old 18650 cells that we've used in hunting lights, etc.
 

Philbert

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#1 consideration on battery powered OPE is first look at the battery platform, and the ‘family’ of products supported, not just the tool.

I don’t understand self propelled on battery lawn mower. They are so light, and optimizing battery output is such a design issue.

I have used Oregon and Redback provided, battery powered lawn mowers for over 10 years (?) on my 7,500 square foot lot.

All of my Oregon batteries still work after 13+ years, although, not with full output anymore. Not such good experience with Redback batteries.

Both lines have been discontinued, as I understand, so when these batteries are done, so are the associated products.


Philbert
 

Philbert

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Among neighbors, the Greenworks (various voltage platforms), and EGO have good reputations for home OPE.

Philbert
 
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AnthemBassMan

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Get a 6+hp 4-stroke self propelled gasoline mower and call it a day - for a decade and more!

I have a 2008. one and it will go over and chew up anything, including ant and mole hills.
I hit a concrete water pipe last Saturday, no damage other than a slight dulling of the blade

Just saying, suit Yourself.
Good luck!
I still mow with my two 46 and 49 year old Lawn-Boy push mowers. Both still start up on the first or second pull. The oldest one has the points and condenser ignition. My battery powered drill drivers and hedge trimmer is about as far as I’ll go with battery powered equipment. But to each their own.

L8R,
Matt
 
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