Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

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mirak
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Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby mirak » July 25th, 2017, 11:47 am

My old mower just died, and unless I can get it fixed cheaply (see my other thread) I'll be buying a new mower soon. It looks like cordless electric mowers are finally "making the cut" for a lawn of my size. My yard is about 1/3 acre.

I'm down to two models in stock at Home Depot and Lowes. Both are $450, self-propelled, with 21" decks. Both weigh about 60 pounds.

Home Depot has the highly rated Ego LM2101 which comes with one 5 amp 56 volt battery. That is 280 watts. Supposedly provides about 45 minutes of mowing time. Comes with rapid charger that recharges in about 40 minutes. Plastic deck.

Lowes has the Kobalt KM2180B-06 (supposedly identical manufacturer and performance as Greenworks) which comes with two 2 amp 80 volt batteries. That is 320 watts total. Supposedly provides about 30 minutes of mowing time per battery. Charger takes about 30 minutes to recharge. Steel deck. Slightly larger wheels than the Ego.

Both offer compatible blowers and trimmers if I want to expand the family down the line.

Haven't found a specific face-off of these two mowers. Do you have any thoughts?
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby seiyafan » July 28th, 2017, 5:08 pm

EGO has a steel deck with brushless motor, people find it mulch better than the 21'' version.
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby drawz » July 28th, 2017, 10:31 pm

I really like my Ego 20", which is the older model. The 21" is supposed to be even better. Mine is not self propelled and that seems to be just fine on my smaller flat yard (0.2 acre lot). I can easily mow twice on a single charge of the 4Ah battery. I have additional batteries and one can complete a charge before the one in use dies, so I could keep going indefinitely in theory. The Ego charges the 4 & 5 Ah batteries in 30 min, which is significantly faster than Greenworks/Kobalt. Ego seems to lead the way on battery tech.

When comparing power, you can't multiply the amp-hour capacity of the battery times the voltage, which gives you watt-hours. That's just another way of getting to the battery storage capacity and make it more apples to apples for different voltages. It doesn't reflect the power of the motor.

I actually prefer the plastic deck - weighs less and I don't have to worry about it rusting. The plastic seems plenty strong. I also prefer the ergonomics of the Ego to the Kobalt/Greenworks - the way it folds and stores vertically, the way the battery is stored, etc. The rest of the Ego line seems to be better as well - I have their snow blower, string trimmer, and leaf blower and they're all great.

In the end, both are good options. Think about the other tools you might want to buy and compare those as well because it's nice to be in a single battery type eco system.

Last thing I'll say - I can't imagine going back to gas. The battery stuff is so much quieter, there are no fumes, no maintenance, no mixing oil/gas, no gas to store, etc.
mirak
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby mirak » August 4th, 2017, 5:03 pm

I decided to try the Kobalt mainly because of price. It starts at $449, but after using a 10% off coupon I bought online for $1.99, and another 11% rebate (in form of a Lowes GC) promotion currently running, it brought my price down to well under $400, tax included. by contrast, Home Depot just raised the price of the EGO LM2101 (push version) back up to $499.

I may actually buy the EGO, too, just to perform a comparison test, but here are my experiences with the Kobalt so far....

1. The fact that the Kobalt comes with two batteries is a huge plus. Granted, those batteries are only 2 amps (at 80v) and only last about 30 minutes in normal mowing conditions (taller grass will shorten that runtime to closer to 20 minutes), but they also charge in about 30 minutes! So, even though you'll have to swap batteries at least one time for anything but a small yard, you'll never be sitting around waiting for batteries to recharge.

2. Both Kobalt and EGO tout that the motor adapts to the cutting needs to save power. For the Kobalt, this basically means two speeds. It starts on low speed and kicks into high speed as needed. For my lawn, which is quite thick and had slightly higher than normal grass, it spent most of the time on high speed. This will obviously drain the battery quicker.

3. It took me three batteries-worth (two swaps) to mow my roughly 12,000 sqft lawn. It is possible that I might be able to squeak by on 2 under normal conditions. By contrast, the EGO's 4 amp battery will last longer (especially at only 56v), but I'm betting that still wouldn't satisfy my entire yard in one charge, and because the EGO only comes with one battery, I'd be sitting around waiting to recharge. (Extra batteries are currently several hundred dollars for both the Kobalt and EGO).

4. The Kobalt appears solidly constructed. Steel deck, but still much lighter than a conventional gas mower. I have no difficulty pushing it up hills. I regret that it is single lever deck adjustment - I prefer being able to adjust each wheel (comes in handy when mowing on curbs).

5. It is super quiet, especially when on the lawn.

6. At 80v, the Kobalt is just barely powerful enough to perform a decent cut and mulch. Lawn striping is not as pronounced as with my heavier gas mower. It does not have nearly the suction of a gas mower, but it still does an adequate job cutting and mulching the grass. It does not perform as well as a gas mower mulching stuff already in the grass, like leaves and twigs. This makes me question the performance of the EGO, which is less powerful at only 56v and is subject to complaints of not properly mulching thick lawns and leaving a line of clippings.

7. All in all I'm pleased with the Kobalt. This could be an even better solution as the price of Li-ion batteries comes down (assuming Kobalt sells a larger but compatible battery in a few years).
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby Smolenski7 » August 7th, 2017, 7:26 pm

I have had the opportunity to use several of the EGO outdoor tools, and they were all great for smaller yards. I would suggest it.

I'm just wondering a few things:
1. It sounds like your yard really requires a traditional gas powered mower, why do you want a battery operated one?

2. The EGO has better reviews and even in this thread people are suggesting it, why then did you choose the Kobalt?

mirak
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby mirak » August 9th, 2017, 3:22 pm

I bought an electric because my gas mower finally died and I was tired of gas and engine maintenance. I now have no spark plugs, oil changes, carburetors, or gas to worry about, and much much quieter.

I chose the Kobalt based upon:
1. Price (nearly $100 cheaper)
2. 2 batteries (yes, I should get at least double the run-time with the EGO 4 amp battery, but if that doesn't satisfy my whole yard then I'm stuck waiting for recharge. With the Kobalt I know I have to swap batteries but I never have to wait on recharging)
3. Mulching performance (I have also read quite a few reviews indicating that EGO has a mulching problem in thick lawns. I have a Milorganite-thick lawn and haven't had problems with the Kobalt)
4. 80v versus 56v (lower voltage doesn't necessarily mean less power if the design is more efficient, but that's a pretty big difference in voltage, and power is obviously very important to mowing and mulching thick grass)

I haven't found a single review squaring off the Kobalt directly against the EGO, which is pretty surprising given that these are the two flagship models of Lowes and Home Depot, respectively. I am planning on buying an EGO just to perform exactly that test.
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Smolenski7
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby Smolenski7 » August 9th, 2017, 10:49 pm

I haven't found a single review squaring off the Kobalt directly against the EGO, which is pretty surprising given that these are the two flagship models of Lowes and Home Depot, respectively. I am planning on buying an EGO just to perform exactly that test.
That would be great. I can't wait to read it. Maybe you can post a video or two as well.
mirak
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby mirak » August 13th, 2017, 8:57 am

Here it is! The first head to head review of Kobalt vs EGO - Lowes vs Home Depot.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=aItT8xrD32Y
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby double_e5 » August 13th, 2017, 11:06 pm

Nice comparison! I'm still not quite there yet on a battery powered mower, but I have the Kobalt 80v trimmer and love it. I plan on adding the blower next so I can ditch the mixed gas altogether.
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Re: Thoughts on Ego versus Kobalt cordless mowers?

Postby kevreh » August 16th, 2017, 3:29 pm

Just sold my EGO mower. Really liked the electric/no gas aspect. But the two biggest issues were the fixed speed driving mechanism (whereas the Toro adjusts the speed based on how much you push on the handle), and the weird programming of the motor rpms. To conserve power the mower is programmed to slow down the rpms. But once you go over longer grass it bogs down, then tries to speed up. Like a bad clipper cutting through hair that causes inconsistant cutting. What they should do is provide an override switch to keep the rpms consistant.

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