For cutting down overgrown patches of weeds or scrub or even just keeping the edges of your lawn crisp and smart, a weed eater is an invaluable piece of kit. There are many types available, including traditional gas-powered ones as well as corded electric models – but one of the most popular – as well as the most convenient – is the cordless trimmer.
Cordless versions combine many of the advantages of the other two with very few of the disadvantages. If this sounds like the kind of tool you are interested in, here are our top picks for best cordless weed eater.
Best Cordless String Trimmer Comparison Chart 2020
Black & Decker LST136W
GreenWorks Pro ST80L210
Toro PowerPlex 51482
DeWalt DCST970X1 Flexvolt
Worx WG175 String Trimmer/Edger/Mini-Mower
If you are looking for a weed eater that will take all the hassle out of maintaining a clean and cared-for yard, you will have noticed that there is an almost bewildering selection to pick from.
Here we’ll look at the advantages of cordless models compared to gas and corded weed eaters – then we’ll go on to give you the tips you need to help pick the best battery powered weed eater.
Why battery power?
Traditionally, weed eaters – like most other power tools – were powered by gas. However, in recent years, corded and cordless versions have improved a lot and are now able to compete with the gas models.
First, let’s have a look at the advantages and disadvantages of each to think about why you would want to buy a cordless weed eater.
Gas-powered models are still the most powerful – although some battery or corded models now come close. However, they are noisier, heavier, usually more expensive in the long run and require more maintenance. Since they burn gas, they are also more polluting.
They are still the first choice for commercial-grade use but are falling out of favor for home use.
2. Corded Weed Eaters
Corded weed eaters are quieter, lighter and pollution-free, giving them several distinct advantages over gas-powered options. They are more popular for home use since they are easier to manage and are powerful enough for just about any everyday task.
The problems with corded versions all come from the cord itself. With one of these, you can only operate within reach of a power outlet – and extensions can be cumbersome – and working with a cord trailing behind can be awkward.
3. Cordless String Trimmers
Like corded versions, corded trimmers are quiet, non-polluting and easy to use. However, they don’t suffer from the restrictions of being attached to a cord and can be used anywhere, giving you greater range.
However, the problem is that batteries don’t always last long and can sometimes give you only 15-30 minutes of use before they need to be recharged. This means you either have to buy extra batteries or you need to do you work in short bursts.
That said, some battery-powered trimmers have excellent battery life and can be recharged quickly, making this much less of an issue.
If you don’t want to be restricted by a cord but you don’t want a heavy, noisy, polluting gas-powered trimmer, a battery-operated version is an obvious solution.
6 Important Factors To Consider Before You Buying
Here are the main things you should be looking for when choosing a cordless weed eater.
a). Battery life
The most important factor to consider is how long a trimmer can run on one charge. Anything above half an hour is good – but some can give you an hour of use or more without the need to plug in.
Think about the work you will need to do and decide if the battery life of the unit you are considering will be enough.
b). Battery power
A higher voltage rating translates into more power. 40v can deliver a respectable amount of power but if you want to tackle the toughest jobs, 60v or even 80v is better.
c). Charge time
Some batteries can take several hours to charge while others only need 30 minutes. Having this kind of quick-charging battery can make a big difference if you need to use it for bigger jobs since you won’t need to wait as long between charges.
d). Weight and balance
Don’t forget to pay attention to the weight of a weed eater you’re thinking of buying. If you need to use it for longer periods, choosing a bulky, heavy tool will quickly tire you out, so always choose one you are sure you can manage.
The balance of the tool – the way the weight is spread – is also an important consideration when it comes to ease of use.
e). One string or two?
Weed eaters have either one cutting string or two. Those with two cutting strings are more suited to heavier-duty work and will make dealing with tougher grass or weeds quicker and easier.
f). Dual mode?
Some weed eaters can easily be converted into edger mode simply by rotating the head. If this sounds like something that would be useful for you, make sure the model you buy has this capability.
The Best Cordless Electric Weed Eater on the Market of 2020
1. GreenWorks Pro ST80L210 Cordless String Trimmer
This is a powerful cordless string trimmer that is designed to compete with gas-powered versions, giving you all the advantages of gas trimmers without the disadvantages.
It runs on an 80v battery that can give you up to 45 minutes of continuous use on one charge – and when it runs out, it will fully recharge in only 30 minutes.
This trimmer uses the same battery as other tools in the Greenworks range – if you already have one or decide to buy a second battery, you can effectively use the trimmer for as long as you like by rotating and recharging two batteries.
This model also features an advanced digital brushless motor, giving you more torque, higher efficiency, better cutting power and giving the tool a longer lifespan.
When dealing with particularly tough patches of weeds or scrub, you can also increase the power, allowing you to slice through even the toughest areas of undergrowth with ease.
This string cutter features a two-line design – these types of models cut faster and are better at dealing with tough jobs, and the wide 16” cutting width means you will finish your garden tasks in the shortest possible time.
As we mentioned, this is marketed as a unit to compete with a gas trimmers. It has the power to match gas trimmers for all but the most demanding tasks but also has many advantages over gas-powered models.
It is much lighter than most gas trimmers and will be easy enough to use for just about anyone. It is also far quieter than any gas trimmer, meaning your ears – and your neighbors – will appreciate this tool. It also has much less vibration, making it comfortable to use for longer.
The cutting motor is front mounted for extra comfort, and the whole unit features an ergonomic design that makes it a pleasure to use.
All in all, this tool does a great job of achieving what it sets out to do – that is, it is a viable option in terms of power and convenience that can replace a gas-powered unit for all but the toughest of jobs. A highly recommended trimmer.
What I Like
What I Don't Like
2. Black & Decker LST136W String Trimmer / Edger (Our Top Recommended)
This is a lightweight battery-powered weed eater from established and reliable brand Black+Decker. It has dual trimmer and edger modes and is designed to power through any regular maintenance jobs you need to take care of about your yard.
It runs off a powerful 40v battery which delivers plenty of kick to deal with even any tougher grass or weeds you might need to cut down.
With any battery-powered tool, battery life and power are always a concern, but this innovative Black+Decker model can be adjusted using the Powercommand feature to deliver more power or longer battery life as required.
If you are dealing with tough, overgrown weeds or thicker brush, you can switch it to the Max Power setting and chop right through everything in your path. If you don’t have a large yard to trim, this will also help speed up the work.
On the other hand, if you have larger areas of thinner grass or weeds to clear, you just switch over to Max Runtime and the battery will give you extra cutting time to finish the job.
By using the Max Runtime setting, you can expect to cut up to a mile of weeds or lawn border, and for us, this is one of the major highlights of this model.
Another highlight is how light, well-balanced and easy to use it is. It weighs less than 8lbs, and the weight is evenly distributed, meaning just about anybody can use it for longer periods without having to worry about fatigue.
This trimmer is able to cut a 13” swathe through grass or weeds, so you won’t have to waste time going over the same sections several times to achieve a clean cut.
As we mentioned, this is also a dual-function tool, and it can easily be converted from trimmer mode to edger mode, allowing you to give your lawn a carefully manicured and highly professional appearance.
There’s not much to dislike about this trimmer. Perhaps if you need to deal with heavily overgrown areas, you might prefer a more heavy-duty gas-powered version. This tool does also tend to go through cutting string quite quickly.
However, these are minor issues and don’t really pose a problem for us. If you are looking for a reasonably-priced, high-quality and reliable cordless weed eater for general yard maintenance, this is an excellent option – and an easy choice for our top pick.
What I Like
What I Don't Like
3. Worx WG175 String Trimmer/Edger/Mini-Mower
If you like to get the best value and maximum use from your tools, this unit from Worx might be worth a look. While dual trimmers and edgers are common, this one can also be converted into a mini mower complete with wheels, giving you maximum functionality and flexibility.
It is a smaller model designed for regular yard maintenance jobs rather than heavy-duty cutting or weed clearing. It runs on a 32v battery which gives you plenty of power to deal with light or moderate jobs.
Each charge will allow you to work for up to around 35 minutes – although less if you are dealing with tougher vegetation. Even if this is not enough, this unit is supplied with two batteries, allowing you to work for twice as long.
However, one of the downsides with this trimmer is that the batteries take over three hours to fully charge. This means if you can’t finish your work with the charge in two batteries, you will have to down tools while the batteries recharge.
As we mentioned, it is a 3-in-1 model – and we love the mini-mower configuration. If you only have a very small lawn to take care of, this will be much more practical and economical than buying a larger and more expensive full mower.
We also like the way it is so easy to switch between the different modes. The handle is easy to adjust and can be set in seven different positions, allowing you to find the most comfortable position.
The cutting head can be set in different positions up to a 90° angle, giving you more flexibility over how you cut, and at only 6lbs, it is extremely lightweight, meaning that just about anybody will be able to use it.
This is a very handy tool that will come in useful when dealing with a range of gardening tasks. We’re fans of innovative multi-use tools, and this is a big favorite for us. A recommended option for anyone who needs to take care of smaller yards or gardens.
What I Like
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4. Toro PowerPlex 51482 Cordless String Trimmer
Toro is a well-established and trusted brand in the world of power tools, and this battery-powered weed eater continues in that tradition.
It features a brushless motor which increases its power and efficiency compared to brushed motors. These motors also tend to outlast other types – this is a tool you can expect to be using for years to come. It also incorporates a cast iron aluminum head for added durability.
One function you will find especially useful is the variable speed trigger. This allows you to control the power of the trimmer, meaning you can use a lower setting for light or moderate trimming jobs but ramp it up when conditions require.
The means you can conserve battery power when you are just dealing with regular yard maintenance tasks but can deliver enough power to tackle tougher areas as necessary.
This Toro trimmer also includes several design features to make it as comfortable and convenient to use as possible.
The handle is adjustable and slides up and down the shaft, meaning you can easily find the best position to operate the tool. The whole unit has excellent balance, helping spread the weight evenly and making it even easier to wield.
The straight steel shaft also folds in half, making it convenient to store, especially useful if space in your shed or garage is limited.
If you are looking for a cordless weed eater that will let you deal with regular garden chores without the noise, weight or pollution of a gas-powered model, this could be another excellent option that is well worth checking out.
While it might be a little small and lacking in power to deal with the toughest jobs you might need it for, for everything else, it will be more than adequate.
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5. Greenworks 21362 Cordless String Trimmer
This is another trimmer from Greenworks, but this time, a slightly smaller version from their 40v range of tools. If you like the sound of the model above and all the features it offers but don’t need anything quite as big or powerful, this could be the right option for you.
It features the same brushless motor technology as its bigger brother, providing you with all the same benefits.
Brushless motors give you higher levels of efficiency, deliver more power, can run for longer on a single battery charge and have a longer working life than other kinds of motor.
Speaking of battery life, this tool performs excellently. During normal cutting use, one charge will give you around 50-60 minutes, plenty for most regular sized yards. There are few battery-powered trimmers that can go longer than this.
The battery will deliver consistent power right up until it runs out rather than fading away as it runs down, and when it finally does lose power, it is also extremely fast to charge again. This means you won’t have to wait long to be ready to go again.
Since it uses the same battery as the rest of the tools in the same range, you may already have another one in your shed, instantly doubling the time you can work for.
As you may be able to guess from the name, Greenworks is a company that takes pride in producing tools that are kind on the environment. As a battery-powered unit, this trimmer produces zero harmful emissions and is also about a quiet as weed eaters come.
As we mentioned, this is a slightly smaller version of the Greenworks trimmer we looked at above. It’s cut path is 14” rather than the 16” of the larger model – although not quite as wide, this is still a decent size for most jobs and will allow you to deal with most yard maintenance.
Overall, another high-quality product from Greenworks. If you don’t quite need the size and power of the 80v model and want something lighter and more manageable for a smaller yard, this could be just what you’re looking for.
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6. Ryobi P2060A Cordless String Trimmer
If you are looking for a lightweight trimmer and edger that will be practical and handy to use for lighter work around your yard, this model from Ryobi could be worth a look.
It runs on the same 18v lithium-ion battery that is used across the Ryobi range, and although not the most powerful trimmer you’ll find, it is more than capable of dealing with any basic garden maintenance tasks you might need it for.
This is a trimmer that is designed for jobs where precision is important – jobs like cutting around lawn edges or around flowerbeds. While it might struggle with tougher or thicker weeds, if you only need it for manicuring your lawn or similar jobs, it will perform well.
It is a 2-in-1 trimmer and edger – you can easily adjust the angle of the head to use it just as easily for either function.
We also like the way the handle can be positioned according to your own personal preference – it’s a great looking tool that was designed with comfort and ease of use in mind.
Another advantage of this model is its price. It is less expensive than many comparable trimmers – and while it’s true that it doesn’t pack as much power as some more expensive versions, if you don’t need that power, you can save some cash by opting for this unit.
It also includes a three-year warranty and a 90-day risk-free satisfaction guarantee. When you buy any tool, you hope it will last – and with the three-year guarantee, you can be sure that if anything goes wrong, the manufacturer will be able to set things right.
Overall, a great option if you want something for light work. If you’re looking for a heavy-duty battery-powered trimmer intended to hold its own against gas-powered tools, this would be the wrong pick for you – but if you want something light and inexpensive, it’s worth a look.
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7. DeWalt DCST970X1 String Trimmer
This is another high-power battery-operated trimmer that is designed to go toe-to-toe with gas-powered models and hold its own. While it is hard for a battery version to match gas for raw power, this comes close – and makes up for any lack with other advantages.
It comes supplied with a battery and charger. The battery lasts for a long time – it should easily last long enough to complete most regular yard tasks for home users, even those with larger pieces of land to take care of.
The advantages it has over a gas-powered unit are clear. At only 12lbs, it is lighter than most gas trimmers. It makes far less noise and only runs when you are cutting with it – with gas trimmers, you need to leave them idling, even when not cutting. It is also very easy to start.
One top feature we approve of is the speed trigger. Like some of the other models we’ve looked at in this review, with this trimmer, you can select how much power you use according to the job you are working on.
If you want to save battery power, you can use it on a low setting. This will cut through light weeds or grass with no problem while at the same time conserving the charge.
However, for tougher, heavier-duty cutting tasks, you just squeeze the trigger all the way and blast through whatever is in front of you. This is an excellent feature that makes this tool practical and convenient for all kinds of work.
On the downside, the guard that it comes with is not particularly effective. While you can buy a better one that will prevent grass and clippings from being blasted everywhere, for us, it would have made more sense to fit one as standard since everybody requires this.
Another issue is that there have been reports that the battery provided might not last as long as you would like. You can always buy a new one from a store, but if you want to obtain a new one from the company while the unit is under warranty, you may need to wait several weeks.
However, these minor issues and potential problems asides, this is a good option for anyone looking for a heavy-duty cordless weed eater than comes close to the power of a gas version but without many of the drawbacks.
If that sounds like the kind of thing you are looking for, this could be another option well worth investigating.
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Convenient, practical and good for the environment
The best cordless weed eaters are wonderful tools that combine convenience and practicality while also being kind on the environment. There are many to choose from, from lightweight models for small-scale jobs right up to heavy-duty models that are almost as powerful as gas versions.
Whichever kind you are looking for, it can be difficult to choose the right model – but by checking out the suggestions in our review, you can be sure you are starting in the right place.