Gas String Trimmer vs. 20V Battery Powered

Reply

  #1  
Old 05-10-17, 02:57 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2017
Location: USA
Posts: 4
Gas String Trimmer vs. 20V Battery Powered

Hi all-

First post on the forum. My girlfriend and I just bought our first house in March and we're in the process of turning into our home. We moved in a few weeks ago and we've gotten most of the larger inside projects done.

However, the lawn has taken a back seat. Now that it needs a bit of TLC, I'm looking to pick up a weed wacker/power trimmer.

I'm torn. Gasoline or battery powered?

As far as the gasoline trimmer goes, I'm mostly considering the Stihl FS40C-E ($160) and Stihl FS50C-E ($200). When it comes to small motors, I've always favored Stihls for the ease of maintenance. The only drawback is that I must go through an authorized dealer.

As far as the battery powered trimmer, it's the Dewalt DCST920B kit ($180) or nothing. My power tools all run on the Dewalt 20V system and I will not buy into a second battery system. Biggest win is the reduced maintenance, however, the batteries do have a finite lifespan.

My property is 2.2 acres, but the lawn is significantly smaller. No fences to trim against, but some rocks. I'd like something that I can trim the entire edge of the lawn (probably a good 20-30 minutes trimming) without recharging or refilling a gas tank.

Anyone care to weigh in? I've got a Stihl dealer nearby, and I can pick up the Dewalt anytime on Amazon.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 05-10-17, 03:54 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,320
Welcome to the forums!

If it weren't for the other tools you have that use the same battery - I'd totally nix the battery powered weedeater. My stepson bought one at his mother's urging [don't remember the voltage] but it would run out of power before the weedeating was done. He looked for reasons not to use it and by the 2nd year the battery wouldn't hold a charge .... so I had to go back to going over there once/twice a month and weed eat with my gas weedeater.

Hopefully some of the others will have more experience with battery yard tools and can chime in with better advice for you.
 
  #3  
Old 05-10-17, 04:33 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 18,281
I have gas powered Stihl tools so old I can't remember their age. As long as you are good about fresh gas it will last you a very, very long time. Any gas powered trimmer should be able to do your trimming two or maybe three times on a tank of gas and the tool will deliver full power right to the end.

Cordless tools are great. They start right up when you pull the trigger and have surprisingly good power. Their drawback is the shorter run time and expense. Batteries are expensive and when your batteries die of old age (and they will) you'll be faced with buying a whole new tool because a couple batteries are %75 the cost of a new tool. With a 2 acre lawn you'll have to look closely at the rated run times and take them with a grain of salt. Read reviews to find how long the battery lasts while working. I find most manufacturers over state their run time. Yes, the tool may run for 45-60 minutes but that's with no load. When cutting heavy grass or weeds you may get less than 1/2 the rated run time.
 
  #4  
Old 05-10-17, 05:38 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 4,263
I'd forget about any curved shaft trimmer.
With a straight shaft you can buy accessories to turn it into a blower, edger, mini tiller, pole saw by just slipping on a different head.
 
  #5  
Old 05-10-17, 05:44 PM
BFHFixit's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: USA.
Posts: 1,836
Bah Humbug!!!
Please do not buy a new Stihl trimmer....they are junk and once they need worked on, many times can not even be repaired for less than the price of a new unit.
Here is a test for any stihl dealer you might purchase from. Ask them to show you how to change a spark plug, adjust the carb, replace the pull rope...then you can fully appreciate just how cheap they have become.

Personally for trimmers, blowers and such, the only way to go is battery for me. I myself use Black and Decker but since you have a source of batteries already, and I do respect the DeWalt name, that is what I would recommend. My trimming with my 20V B&D never runs out on me in 20 mins of trimming, which is all I care to do at one time any way.

As long as you are only trimming grass and small weeds, there is plenty of power.

If you did choose a light gas powered trimmer, I would look at any Home Improvement store or walmart for an 80 dollar Weedeater/Poulan. They are now owned and made by Husqvarna. Use them for 3-5 years, then replace when they give up because new is less than a service charge.
 
  #6  
Old 05-10-17, 06:40 PM
Marq1's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: USA MI
Posts: 2,921
I would look at any Home Improvement store or walmart for an 80 dollar Weedeater/Poulan
Sorry, cheap can be expensive.

I too have a Stihl, it replaces several cheap trimmers and still going strong after 7 years.

I guess it's pretty good that after 7 years I have not had to change a spark plug, adjust the carb, or replace the pull rope while after many less years the cheap units were in the trash.

Lawn tools, power tools. you get what you pay for!!!!!!!
 
  #7  
Old 05-10-17, 07:39 PM
BFHFixit's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: USA.
Posts: 1,836
Lawn tools, power tools. you get what you pay for!!!!!!!

Edit / Delete Edit Post Quick reply to this message Reply
Unless you buy a S**** .
Let me put it this way...we have only one Sthil dealer in my town, and I am not one of them. The one dealer will not even service or work on some that I see come in my shop, when I do see them, there are few that I can save.
 
  #8  
Old 05-11-17, 04:49 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,320
The biggest problem with Sthil is you pretty much have to go to an authorized retailer/repair center to get parts. That limits your options especially in small town USA. I inquired about a repair manual was told they are only available to authorized Sthil repair centers and not for sale. I used to be a big believer in Sthil but when I had issues with my last Sthil saw, I had to order/pay for the parts and then wait 7 weeks [originally told 10 days] for them to come in.

I replaced that saw with a hasqvarna rancher that cuts just as well but the saw weighs more I really like my little 14" poulan because it's light .... and cheap, so much so that at $100 it's not worth repairing.
 
  #9  
Old 05-11-17, 08:01 AM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: MI
Posts: 2,582
I've been using the Dewalt 20V Max trimmer for about a year and the 5AH battery it comes with will do all my trimming and still have about 1/2 capacity left (1.75 ac.).
It's a killer trimmer. Very powerful and very quiet.
 
  #10  
Old 05-11-17, 10:09 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2017
Location: USA
Posts: 4
So from what I'm reading, Stihl has its demerits, such as needing a dealer for parts (an Elite Dealer and Gold-Level Servicing Technician is right in town), and lack of support for self-repairs (I'm also a former technician for some scuba regulators who have the same requirements, but the parts can be gotten other places) but the most concerning for me is the supposed drop in quality.

When I worked in the building materials industry, the Stihls we used were reliable. When I moonlighted with contractors, the Stihls were reliable. When my parents bought their gas trimmer, they bought a Stihl, which is reliable. That's my motivation for sticking with a brand I know.

But of course, I'm concerned if the newer models are indeed less reliable.
 
  #11  
Old 05-11-17, 10:13 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2017
Location: USA
Posts: 4
guy48065, thanks for the note. This bodes well for the Dewalt. And it's a double victory since that 5AH battery can do double duty in some of my other equipment.

Still undecided though.
 
  #12  
Old 05-11-17, 04:42 PM
Member
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 105
Just a thought...if your girlfriend likes to help with the lawn care (I know I do, just to be able to enjoy being outdoors!) you may want to consider a battery powered trimmer? We've had several gas powered trimmers through the years, but after my hubby purchased a bigger, more powerful 4-stroke gas trimmer, I told him I was through helping with the trimming! (I got completely frustrated with trying to pull start that thing!lol)
So we checked into the rechargeable battery powered trimmers. (purchased an EGO trimmer from the big orange box store). I love it! It's light enough for me to maneuver yet powerful enough for me to get the job done. The battery lasts about 45 min. to an hour, but by that time I'm ready to take a break anyway. Also love the fact that I can start/stop it at any time and not have to worry if I'm gonna be able to get it started again!
Best of luck with your decision and congratulations on becoming a home owner! :-)
 
  #13  
Old 05-12-17, 12:28 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2017
Location: USA
Posts: 4
Thanks all for the advice. Your responses, combined with an offer from a friend who works for a Dewalt dealer offered to hook me up with an open box DCST920B bare tool for a very good price.

Combine that with Dewalt's Amazon deal with the two 5A battery/charger/bag combo for $299 with two free tools, it was a no-brainer. I'm getting a new impact wrench, jigsaw and two batteries for my trimmer after all.

Spent a bit more than I wanted to, but I couldn't pass up the spare batteries that are used in the rest of my power tools!
 
  #14  
Old 05-13-17, 04:58 AM
Norm201's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 6,195
FWIW...Last year I bought a WORX 32 v trimmer. Love it. Prior to that I would only consider gas. But I could not find what I wanted in the current gas powered units. The important thing with the new generation of battery power is higher voltage and lithium battery technology. Get nothing less than 30 volts.
 
  #15  
Old 05-15-17, 09:03 AM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: MI
Posts: 2,582
Is it torque or runtime that's lacking in the 20V lithium trimmer? How does the runtime compare between the 32V WORX and the 20V Dewalt? What's the AH rating of the 32V WORX pack?

If 30V is good then 40V HAS to be better, yes? Or maybe overkill...
Recently I was in Sears and noticed they were clearing out the 40V Dewalt trimmers, but the 20V was still stocked. IMO the extra capacity isn't needed and those aren't selling well.
 
  #16  
Old 04-14-18, 09:51 PM
Member
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1
How about a 56V? Would that be powerful enough? There's a brand called EGO Power that has a 56V model that's supposed to be as powerful as gas strimmers. Can anyone who commented here attest to this?
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes