/>
X
Why you can trust ZDNet
ZDNet independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNet Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNet's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNet nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNet's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.

Close

The 5 best electric mowers: Top alternatives to gas-powered

What is the best electric mower? Our pick is the Ego Power+ LM2101. By using either a rechargeable battery or extension cord, you can ditch the gas can for a greener way to care for your lawn.
taylor-clemons1.jpg
Written by Taylor Clemons, Staff Writer on
Reviewed by Elyse Betters Picaro

Electric mowers were first introduced back in the 1930s, but they hadn't caught on with homeowners until very recently. The biggest draw for electric mowers is that they don't require the same maintenance as their gas-powered cousins: no stocking up on fuel, oil changes, filter and spark plug replacements, or exhaust repairs. They typically use brushless motors, like what you see in cordless power tools like drills and saws, which creates horsepower and torque similar to a gas engine in a much smaller package. 

Many models use rechargeable batteries for power -- and can use the same batteries you may already own if you are a brand loyalist -- making them easier to integrate into your workshop. There are models which are powered by extension cords, though I can't recommend them since there is always the risk of running over the live wire and getting hurt. 

While an electric mower won't have the same run time as a gas-powered model, you can still get at least an hour of work out of a fully charged battery on average. You'll typically see electric push mowers, but there are a few different models of electric riding mowers as well.

To help you find the perfect electric mower for your yard, we rounded up five of the best models you can buy. We compare their features and price points below, so you can decide which one is the best fit for you. 

Must read:

Ego Power+ LM2101

Best electric mower

ego-power-push-mower-2.jpg
Ego Power

The Ego Power+ 21-inch, battery-powered push mower is one of the most popular choices for customers looking to make the switch from gas to electric lawn equipment -- and for good reason. With an ultra-easy push-button start, you can say goodbye to frustrating rip cords and get near-instant motor starts. 

You can adjust the 21-inch cutting deck at 6 different heights with the simple shifter knob on the side, and the included bagger attachment means you won't have to spend hours of your day raking up clumps of clippings. But if you prefer not to bag your lawn cuttings, the mower also has a mulching feature to create extra-fine clippings to feed your lawn between landscaping appointments. 

The entire unit folds up into a compact form for easier storage, which is perfect for garages and tool sheds where space is at a premium. Its 56 volt battery can be used with other Ego Power branded tools and gives you up to 45 minutes of run time on a full charge. It even has LED headlights for when you need to cut your grass early in the morning or later in the evening.

Pros:

  • One battery, multiple tools
  • Bagger attachment included
  • Push-button start
  • Folding design

Cons:

  • 45-minute run time may be too short for some lawns

Worx WG779

Best budget electric mower

worx-electric-push-mower-2.jpg
Worx

Most electric mowers are pricey -- or just down right expensive -- but the Worx 40V, 14-inch push mower is one of the most budget-friendly on the market. And just because it retails comfortably under $300 doesn't mean it skimps on features. 

You can adjust the cutting deck to three different heights, so you can tackle everything from the first spring mow to a quick re-cut before it rains. It includes a .85 bushel bagger attachment for collecting clippings, or you can use the mulching feature to re-feed your lawn with cuttings. 

The on-board battery meter lets you know at-a-glance how much run-time you have left before you need to recharge, and the included dual-port charger lets you top up both batteries at the same time. A push-button start eliminates difficult rip-cords, and the dual-battery power system gives you up to two full hours of run time. 

Pros:

  • Two-hour run time
  • Adjustable cutting height
  • Push-button start and bagger included
  • On-board battery indicator

Cons:

  • Smaller cutting deck may not be ideal for yards over 5,000 sq. ft.

Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro LT 42-inch

Best riding electric mower

cub-cadet-electric-riding-mower-2.jpg
Cub Cadet

Cub Cadet is one of the most recognizable names in lawn mowers, and they've released a battery-powered version of their XT1 Enduro series. It has the same 42-inch, dual-blade cutting deck and three-year warranty as its gas-powered cousin, but it doesn't require all of the maintenance. 

The 56V battery provides enough power for 90 minutes of run time, which is plenty of time to mow up to two acres of grass before you need to recharge. And when you do need to plug in, you can recharge your mower with a standard wall outlet -- no special cords or equipment needed. 

A push-button cruise control lets you set-and-forget your mowing speed for a consistent cut across your whole lawn, and two USB ports let you charge your phone while you ride. The mower has a 16-inch turn radius, which gives it zero-turn quality performance when cutting grass around obstacles like trees, light posts, and mailboxes. This model doesn't include any accessories, though you can buy a bagger attachment, mulching blades, and tow-behind wagons to tackle all of your yard work.

Pros:

  • 90-minute run time
  • Mows up to two acres
  • Charges with regular wall outlet
  • Cruise control

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No attachments included

Ryobi 40V 21-inch

Best self-propelled electric mower

ryobi-electric-push-mower.jpg
Ryobi

Using a push mower can be a workout, but the Ryobi 40V self-propelled electric push mower makes it a bit easier to cut your grass. The brushless motor works with the 10-inch rear wheels to move the whole unit forward, and you can adjust the speed with the integrated clutch. 

If you have other battery-powered Ryobi tools, this push mower uses the same 40V battery to make it easier to integrate into your workshop or tool shed. The two batteries on full charge give you up to 70 minutes of run time, which is enough to handle up to .75 acres of grass. 

You can adjust the 21-inch cutting deck to seven different heights to handle mowing in any season, and the deck is covered by a lifetime warranty against damage. It includes a bagger attachment for collecting grass clippings, or you can use the mulching feature to re-feed your lawn as you mow. The whole mower also folds up into a compact size for easier storage, which is perfect if your garage or tool shed is on the smaller side.

Pros:

  • 70-minute run-time
  • One battery, many tools
  • 10-inch rear wheels with forward drive
  • Seven deck height levels

Cons:

  • On the pricey side
  • Cutting deck is plastic instead of metal

Greenworks Pro 60V CrossoverT 42-inch

Best electric mower with fast charging

greenworks-electric-rider-mower-2.jpg
Greenworks

The biggest drawback of an electric mower is waiting for your batteries to charge. Fortunately, the Greenworks 60V CrossoverT has one of the fastest charging times on the market. The mower comes with six batteries and three dual-port chargers, which allow you to top up your mower batteries in as few as 90 minutes. This is perfect for quick-charging your mower while you tackle other chores like pulling weeds, trimming hedges and tree limbs, or tending to your flower and garden beds. 

The 42-inch cutting deck is perfect for lawns up to 2.5 acres, and the 20-inch rear-drive tires give you forward and reverse speeds up to 8 and 5MPH, respectively. You'll also get zero-turn maneuverability for mowing around obstacles like lawn decorations, trees, and lamp posts. There is even an integrated cargo bed which allows you to haul up to 200 pounds at a time. An integrated USB port lets you charge your phone while you drive, and a built-in GPS lets you track your mower in case of theft.

Pros:

  • Built-in GPS
  • 200 pound cargo capacity
  • 90-minute charge time
  • 2.5 acre max lawn

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No attachments included

What is the best electric mower?

The Ego Power+ 21-inch, 56V push mower is the best electric mower you can buy. It has a 45-minute run time, which is perfect for most suburban yards, and it includes a bagger attachment and a mulching feature to make clean-up easier. You can adjust the cutting deck to six different heights for mowing in almost any season, and the push-button start means you don't have to waste time with frustrating rip cords to get your mower to run. 

Electric mower

Price

Cutting deck size

Power 

Ego Power+ push mower

$399

21-inches

56V battery

Worx push mower

$264

14-inches

Dual 20V batteries

Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro LT

$4659

42-inches

56V battery

Ryobi self-propelled push mower

$549

21-inches

40V battery

Greenworks CrossoverT

$4000

42-inches

Six batteries

Which electric mower is right for you?

Yard size is very important to keep in mind while shopping for a new electric mower. Since many models, both push and rider alike, have run times in the 45- to 60-minute range, they're best used in smaller plots (ideally less than one acre). 

If you have a yard that's larger than an acre, you'll want to avoid a push mower and invest in a riding tractor. These models have 42- or 46-inch cutting decks, which makes short work of larger yards, even within the typical 60-minute time limit. Electric riding mowers tend to be very expensive, but what you spend on the unit itself is saved in the long run by not having to purchase fuel, oil, filters, and other parts you see in gas-powered mowers.

Choose this electric mower...

If you need...

Ego Power+ 21-inch push mower

A well-rounded electric mower for smaller lawns

Worx 40V 14-inch push mower

An affordable electric mower

Cub Cadet XT1 Enduro LT

Gas performance with battery power

Ryobi 40V 21-inch push mower

Self-propelled lawn mower

Greenworks 60V CrossoverT

Quick-charging batteries and zero-turn maneuverability

How did we choose these electric mowers?

We chose both push and rider lawn mowers to suit a variety of different yard sizes and terrains. We also chose different sized cutting decks to allow you to maximize your efficiency and take full advantage of each model's run time.

We avoided electric mowers that require an extension cord, since they can be a hassle to set up -- and you run the risk of running over the electrical cable, which can cause injuries and even death.

How long does an electric mower run?

While an electric mower won't have the same run time as its gas-powered counterparts, you can still get a decent amount of work done before you need to recharge. Most electric mowers, push and rider alike, have a run time in the 45- to 60-minute range; this is just about perfect for yards up to one acre. If you have a larger yard, you'll want to choose a model that has a rapid-charge feature so you don't have to wait around all day to finish mowing.

Can I cut wet grass with an electric mower?

Absolutely not. Just like with gas-powered models, cutting wet grass (whether it's from rain or morning dew) can damage your blades and cutting deck by making the drive belts work harder, resulting in faster dulling, jammed discharge chutes, broken belts, and stripped gears. Mowing wet grass also makes your yard look terrible, since the blades can't make a clean cut and clippings tend to bunch up in huge clumps, which can lead to dead spots. 

With electric mowers, you also run the risk of electric shock and shortages. Water can work its way into the motor and electronics housings, which may lead to damage to the electrical components (requiring costly repairs or even replacing the whole unit) or electrocuting yourself (which not only hurts, but can also lead to disability or even death).

So make sure your yard is as dry as possible before trying to mow to avoid ruining your new mower or getting hurt.

Are there alternative electric mowers worth considering?

While there aren't quite as many options for electric mowers as there are gas-powered models, you can still find a wide variety of battery-powered models. Here's a short list of other electric mowers that are great choices:

Related

The 5 best zero-turn mowers of 2022
A man in work clothes using a Ryobi electric zero turn mower to cut his grass next to a flower bed

The 5 best zero-turn mowers of 2022

Yard & Outdoors
The 5 best lawn mowers of 2022
Man riding a Husqvarna lawn mower, cutting grass around a group of palm trees and ornamental flowers

The 5 best lawn mowers of 2022

Yard & Outdoors
The 5 best robot mowers of 2022
A Husqvarna 430X robot mower in its charging dock, which is set on a patch of well-manicured grass.

The 5 best robot mowers of 2022

Yard & Outdoors