Cordless Grass Trimmers: The Freedom of Battery Power

Picture of a back garden
Cordless grass trimmers are the perfect lawn care accessory when tidying-up the edges of flower borders and vegetable gardens.

The world has changed in many significant ways over the past decade; for example, we’re all now able to access centuries of accumulated human knowledge via tiny supercomputers that fit into our pockets, scientists have found the “God Particle”, and never before have we been able to communicate so freely with other people all over the world (even if it turns out that most people on the internet just want to post photographs of their dinner). None of these things, however, have done anything to help us keep our gardens tidy, so it’s a good thing that other innovations have been a little more horticulturally pertinent.

First and foremost on the list of technological advances for the futuristic gardener is the development of powerful lithium-ion batteries. This has allowed a wide variety of battery-powered garden tools to compete with traditional petrol equipment, offering vastly increased user convenience and eco-friendly performance without having to make sacrifices on results. Perhaps the tools which have benefitted most from this technology, however, are the various battery-powered grass trimmers and brushcutters now available on the market.

The Benefits of Battery Technology

Bosch 36V 6.0Ah Professional Battery
Lithium-Ion battery technology has made staggering advances in recent years, now offering performance that can meet petrol powered machinery.

Grass trimmers and brushcutters are a great example of the many benefits of lithium-ion battery technology because these tools need to be powerful and portable, thereby allowing the user to quickly clear long grass and dense scrub from gardens and other grassed areas. In the past batteries would drain too quickly to make this practical, while corded electric grass trimmers are only useful in smaller domestic gardens. Larger expanses of lawn and complicated gardens would therefore necessitate the use of a noisy petrol-powered machine, but this meant incurring expensive running costs and working in a fog of unpleasant exhaust fumes. This is no longer the case though, as lithium-ion batteries and modern electric motors offer a number of advantages over old fashioned petrol engines:

  • Cleaner: Battery power is better for you and the environment, with zero particle emissions ensuring that you can work without choking on exhaust fumes and without adding to existing pollution problems.
  • Quieter: An electric motor is also significantly quieter than a petrol engine, which means that battery-powered grass trimmers and brushcutters are ideal for use in urban and residential environments where louder petrol equipment would cause an unwelcome disturbance.
  • Easier to Use: Electric motors are much easier to maintain that petrol engines due to a simpler design, while battery-powered equipment is also quick-starting and dependable. Eliminating the need to refuel saves a lot of time and effort over the working day, as well as preventing unfortunate petrol spills.
  • Freedom to Roam: Stick trimmers powered by modern lithium-ion batteries are capable of providing similar runtime to a conventional machine on a full tank of petrol, so you’ll be able to work in expansive areas without having to worry about running out of power; what’s more, with a spare set of batteries charging while you work you can guarantee uninterrupted operation in even the largest gardens.
  • Cheaper: Fuel and service costs mean that petrol tools are expensive to run and maintain, which means that batteries represent a pleasingly economical alternative to petrol equipment. Modern lithium-ion batteries are also long lasting and remain reliable over the years, so eventually a battery-powered stick trimmer will pay for itself!

The upshot of this is that modern battery-powered grass trimmers and brushcutters offer the same effective cutting performance in expansive areas as petrol machines, but with the quiet, clean, user-friendly performance distinctive of electric equipment. There are now battery-powered brushcutters capable of handling the rigorous demands of professional use, so we have very definitely reached a tipping point when it comes to the practicality and convenience offered by these hi-tech machines.

Assuming, then, that we’ve piqued your interest in owning a battery-powered stick trimmer, what are the options available to you? Below we list a few of the exceptional battery-powered grass trimmers and brushcutters we recommend here at Lawnmowers Direct, any of which will provide satisfying cutting performance with pleasingly little fuss.

Masters of the Battery-Powered Tool: Bosch’s Cordless Grass Trimmers

Bosch Cordless Trimmer In Use
Bosch lead the horticultural market where cordless grass trimmers are concerned through a continuous dedication to product development and testing.

Bosch has long had a reputation as the industry’s leading supplier of electrical and battery-powered horticultural tools for hobbyists, so we shouldn’t be surprised to discover that Bosch’s cordless grass trimmers are some of the most popular on the market today. These machines benefit from the same user-friendly technology developed for Bosch’s corded tools, but with powerful nickel-cadmium and lithium-ion batteries included to enable effective cutting in larger gardens and in hard to reach areas.

The newer models with lithium-ion batteries are particularly handy in this regard, as these ensure short charge times, no self-discharge, longer lasting performance and maximum freedom of movement. The ART 23-18 LI and ART 26-18 LI, for instance, are both powered via an efficient 18V/1.5Ah lithium-ion battery and enable quick clearance of long grass and weeds in any domestic garden, offering a 23cm (9”) and 26cm (10.25”) cutting swathe respectively. Both are also lightweight (2.3kg and 2.5kg) and fitted with telescopic handles for added manoeuvrability, while Bosch’s Durablade cutting system ensures interruption-free cutting and delivers a perfect finish every time.

As such even inexperienced users will find routine lawn maintenance becomes simple with one of these tools. Those looking for a little more power, meanwhile, should consider the ART 30-36 LI, which is driven by a 36V/2.6Ah High-Power lithium-ion battery and fitted with a semi-automatic dual nylon line trimmer head for even great ease of operation.

More recently Bosch has expanded into the commercial-grade stick trimmer market, introducing the battery-powered GFR 25 Professional – a hardworking brushcutter ideal for tackling dense undergrowth – and GFR 42 Professional – a manoeuvrable grass trimmer with a cutting swathe of 42cm (16.5”) to enable quick clearance of large amounts of long grass. Fitted with advanced EC motors for added efficiency and powered via 36V/6.0Ah lithium-ion batteries, the GFR 25 and GFR 42 offer professional levels of performance without the noise, fumes and additional expenses of running a petrol machine.

Award-Winning Upstarts: Husqvarna’s Battery-Powered Tools

Husqvarna 136Li Cordless Grass Trimmer
Swedish manufacturer Husqvarna have developed industry leading battery powered gardening tools aimed at the professional landscaping market.

Swedish manufacturer Husqvarna have developed industry leading battery powered gardening tools aimed at the professional landscaping market.

It’s not all about Bosch though, as other manufacturers are becoming increasingly keen to jump on the battery-powered bandwagon. The award-winning tools produced by Husqvarna are a great example of this, having quickly become a popular choice with home users and professional landscapers alike.

In the former case, Husqvarna’s 136 LiC line trimmer provides a great solution for all routine trimming duties in domestic gardens. Powered via a long-life 36V lithium-ion battery, the 136 LiC is lightweight, easy to handle and features a power-saving savE mode to increase run time in larger gardens.

For tougher cutting work, meanwhile, Husqvarna’s 536LiL and 536LiR brushcutters are ideal for spot trimming and mowing of long grass and weeds respectively (with the dual-handlebar on the 536LiR enabling an efficient scything motion). Professional users can also combine these machines with one of Husqvarna’s BLi520X or BLi940X battery backpacks, which ensure outstanding freedom of movement and increased run time for uninterrupted cutting even when taking on the heaviest workloads.

The Future of Grass Trimming

Other manufacturers who have adopted battery technology for their grass trimmers and brushcutters include Oregon (with the ST250 36V cordless trimmer/edger) and ECHO (with the powerful ESR-2300L battery brushcutter), so the future of grass trimming is looking decidedly battery-powered. And why not when these tools offer such exceptional cutting power along with freedom to roam in larger gardens, yet without the fuss, fumes and farrago of running a petrol machine? Battery-powered trimmers are thus ideal for everyone from the home gardener sick of getting power cables tangled around trees and ornaments, to the busy professional contractor seeking a brushcutter for clearing dense scrub and weeds from undeveloped land.