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Should I buy petrol or battery powered garden tools?

LineTrimmer.png10 years ago I would be hesitant to compare battery and petrol units to each other as there was a significant difference in power and runtime. Given the advancements in battery and motor technology such as higher amp-hour cells and brushless systems, I am more than confident you will be exceptionally happy once you make the switch to battery-powered garden tools.


The equivalent to petrol machinery in the battery range is the 36V system of Ryobi tools and the 58V system in AEG tools. Don't let the voltage confuse you, 58V doesn't indicate the tool is any more powerful than a 36V unit.


If you would like to achieve a similar capability to petrol machines I would strongly suggest going with the highest amp-hour battery available for the units. In the Ryobi range that would be the Ryobi 36V 6.0Ah Battery. Amp-hour refers to the runtime on the unit. It will be most economical to purchase a unit that comes with the higher amp-hour battery. Buying the battery separately can be a significant investment.


The initial investment into a machine that comes with a 5.0Ah battery can be seen in the runtimes produced. A lawnmower with a 5.0Ah battery could run for over an hour, the same machine on a 2.5Ah battery may run for 30-40mins. If you need to purchase a secondary 2.5Ah battery to switch out completing the job, you could now be over the cost of the initial larger battery kit.


The Ryobi expand-it edger attachment will fit onto a 36V Ryobi line timmer unit and I believe it will do a similar job to a petrol unit. The only time I suspect you would notice the difference between a battery lawnmower and a petrol lawnmower is in the runtime and if you go on holidays for 4 weeks returning home to find knee-high grass. A battery lawn mower will need to reduce that down in a couple of cuts, one at full height and a second finishing cut. In saying that though, most petrol lawnmowers will bog down when they hit a thick patch of tall grass as well. - MitchellMc


One thing I will add though concerning the battery amps is their respective weights. There is quite a difference between the weight of a 1.0Ah and 5.0Ah. With the mower that isn't going to be an issue, but with the whipper snipper it really is a serious consideration especially if you are older or have any upper body injuries/issues.


This can also change from model to model and brand to brand as it also comes down to how the tool is weighted and if it is distributed effectively or not. That was one of the main reasons I switched to a battery trimmer, the reduced weight has been much better on my neck and back. - hutchjnr

Growing in Experience

I recommend battery operated to everyone!

So much more versatile as both inside and outside of the home as it’s the simplicity of swapping batteries from one tool to another and depending on what size batteries they can charge in what seems like no time at all.

You save space time and money as well!

No storing of various Jerry cans for 2 stroke and 4 stroke or bottle of oil. No cords getting in the way or bulking out your tools even more having the cords wrapped around them.

An you never know when a crisis will occur or an accident. I am a chronic pain sufferer since being a victim of a high speed MVA at just 17 years old. I’m now 31 and can barely whipper snip a standard yard then mow afterwards. Using my Ryobi products I can whipper  snip, mow, edge and blow the paths clean as well as trim a few shrubs and not be crippled for the next few days after.

The warranties on battery products as well as their performance and the batteries have come along way even in the past 3-5 years. No needing to spend extra money on spark plugs and other parts like you do petrol(not to mention with the rise in petrol costs it’s becoming cheaper to convert to battery powered-that or buying livestock lol).



Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community @Ashie_90. It's brilliant to have you join us, and many thanks for adding to the discussion.

It's great to hear about your experience with battery-powered tools. As a chronic pain sufferer myself, I agree entirely with the advantages you've covered. Their weight is perfect for me, and I love my battery blower and edger.


We look forward to hearing about your projects and plans around the house and garden. Please let us know anytime you need assistance with a project or have something to share.




Kind of a Big Deal

I too have back and neck issues.

What is the weight of these battery-powered whipper-snippers?


Currently I'm using a two-stroke no-name brand (Icon) from a defunct Mitre 10 store.

Purchased in 2010.


IT JUST WON'T DIE (could be a good title for a James Bond movie) - and I don't wanna replace it until it does.

Would battery powered tolls last as long? Any battery longevity stories out there?





Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Hi @Noyade


I've got an 18volt line trimmer and have had it for two years. Knock on wood the batteries are still providing excellent power. But it would be interesting to know if any of our members have battery line trimmers whose battery packs are still going after six years.




Just Starting Out

My husband passed away 20 months ago and up until then he did all of the gardening.  Since then I have purchased Ryobi battery operated line trimmer, hedge clippers, blower and most recently replaced the petrol mower with the Ryobi brushless battery operated one.  At the age of eighty I am managing to do all of the gardening and the lawn mower is so much easier to operate than the petrol.  Also have a drill.  All Ryobi products!  

Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community @Bevanne. It's amazing to have you join us, and many thanks for jumping into the conversation.


I hope you are immensely proud of your efforts as that is really quite the achievement. I'll definitely pass on details of your experience to the Ryobi team, as I trust they'll be delighted to hear that their tools have helped enable you to master your garden.


Please don't ever hesitate to reach out anytime you need assistance around the home or garden. Our wonderful members are always at the ready to lend a hand when needed. 


Community Manager
Community Manager

Great to hear @Bevanne. We really try here on Workshop to encourage everyone to have a go as it's amazing what you can achieve when you have some support and the right tools. Thanks so much for sharing your experience.


Please let us know if you ever need a hand with anything. We're here to help.




Kind of a Big Deal

Well done Bevanne!  :smile:

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