The usefulness of battery-powered yard tools has surprised me. A year ago, when my gas string trimmer crapped out after just two years, I decided to try out a battery-powered string trimmer, and I was pleasantly surprised to find it more than capable of trimming and edging my half-acre-ish yard.
Now the blasted things have started multiplying.
First, it was a pole saw that used the power unit from the string trimmer. It made sense–I’m tired of using a manual pole saw, and this thing makes such short work of tree trimming, up to about 18′, that it’s a temptation to get a little overboard using it. It cut any limb of any species I chose to cut. The largest one was about a 3″ red oak limb. Went through it like butta.
Some arthritis (we think, full diagnoses in progress) in my thumbs of all things made cutting those limbs up more difficult, so along came an electric lopper. And then an electric blower showed up to help clean up all those messes driveways accumulate.
I have to admit that the lopper brought in a different battery type than the other three. That violates my drive to standardize such things, but foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.
This is a fairly significant outlay of cash, but I find myself actually using the tools rather than dreading using the tools. That’s a big plus. And it’s a sight cheaper than hiring a lawn service, even if it’s “Mow Time”. (“Mow time for your yard, mo’ time for you!” I kid you not.) I expect that someday I’ll have to get a service, but I plan on delaying that for as long as possible. Keeping moving is the key to aging somewhat gracefully.
The trimmer and blower both use the DeWalt Flexvolt battery system. I have a single 9ah battery, which is just sufficient to trim and blow everything. Used with the pole saw I wasn’t able to get it to run its three-segment battery indicator down a segment in an afternoon. The lopper has a 20v 2ah battery and it took about 12 hours of work to get me to the point where I said “Charge it!” and that was cutting everything from twigs to 1″+ limbs. You might have to hit the trigger two-three times for the larger stuff.
I think the one 20v battery will meet my needs nicely, but I’m going to have to get another 9ah. They’re about $170, so that might go on my Christmas wish list.
Maybe that hedge trimmer and the chainsaw too. In for a penny, in for an amp hour.