Greenworks PRO 21-Inch 80V Cordless Lawn Mower, 4.0 AH Battery Included GLM801602, reviews, comments

GreenWorks Pro 80V System offers a range of commercial grade tools for the professionals and those who just want more power. This 21-inch cordless lawn mower features a durable steel deck, large 10-inch rear wheels, and Smart Cut(TM) load sensing technology . Light weight and easy to use, it has a single lever height adjustment and 3-in-1 operation for mulching, bagging, and discharging. Designed for durability and heavy duty jobs, it features a brushless motor that delivers the power and performance of a 160cc gas engine. With an extra battery on hand, you can now rip through grass in the neighborhood without the hassle of gas. Compatible batteries currently include a 2ah (model GBA80200) and 4ah (model GBA80400) battery and rapid charger (model GCH8040). The 2ah battery charges within 30 minutes so you can get back to work and finish that job. The 4ah battery charges within 1 hour.

There are a few reviews that complain of failures very soon after purchase. Here is my take. I am a former electronic tech so I know what I am talking about. When you see the word "brushless", it means the manufacturer has chosen a much better way of making the tool, but there is a trade off. Allow me to explain. Hopefully I won't bore you to tears ;-)

Motors work (you are looking to click away right now aren't you? - hang in there one sec :)). Motors work by using a magnetic field to make a rotor turn. There are a number of ways to do that. The most common for DC motors (think battery powered) is to use an outside magnetic field and a contact called a stator which connects the outside magnetic field to the inside field in such a way as to make sure they are always pushing against each other and making the motor turn. This type of motor uses a "brush" to do that "inside to outside field" connection. It rides against the stator while the motor turns. See the image below to know what I am referencing (this is not the motor in the mower, its just one I had in my shop for educational purposes).

The thing is, those brushes (made of graphite) will eventually wear down and the motor will stop working. Brushless motors fix all that by using permanent magnets on the rotor and by using a special electronic circuit to control the outside magnetic field so that it chases the rotor around to make it spin. No brushes to wear out and as a bonus, more control over the motor (variable speeds, load sensing torque, etc...). The trade-off is that there is a fairly complex circuit board with a bunch of transistors in there for the thing to work. This is the way electric cars like the Tesla work.

The reason there are reviews that say "it died totally after xxx time" is that when the controller fails, that's it. It must be replaced in order for the device to work again. Now the companies that make these controllers to try to make them as robust as possible, but as with all electronics, it either works for 20 years or it dies in 2 weeks. It just seems like there is no in between. If I have a choice, I will always choose brushless because they are just better period. Since this mower is warrantied for 4 years, I can hardly see a reason not to buy it.

My experience with the mower and the blower which I purchased together has been just great. They mow and blow just like my old gas powered tools. I'm never going back to gas!!

[4/13/2016 update]
Mower was light enough to lug it down alone to the basement for Winter, and back up for Spring. Absolutely no preparation needed (no gas burn off, stabilizer, spark plugs, filters, etc.), aside from blowing off old grass clippings and covering for dust (cover interchanged with snow blower).

The 2 Ah battery just barely lasts my 1/4 acre mowing, so I'd recommend purchasing a second 2 Ah or 4 Ah battery to swap between. I now use the 4 Ah (bought a week after the mower) in the mower, leaf blower, & snow blower (bought this past winter and also works great), and the lighter 2 Ah battery for the string trimmer & hedge trimmer. I now have the entire GreenWorks 80V line, except the chain saw. My corded Toro leaf blower stays in my basement, and I sold off my gas 2-stage snow blower in December.

[5/18/2015 original review]
I've been holding off on purchasing this until the 4Ah battery bundle became available, but the monkeys swinging across my lawn jungle forced my hand. I decided to just use the 2Ah battery that I already had for my GreenWorks 80V leaf blower.

The shipping weight is 72 pounds (mower-only package), but the box was light enough to carry by myself. Packaging is minimal, yet sturdy, with cardboard spacers. The box contained the mower, handle bar extension, manual booklet, and quick-start sheet.

The only assembly required were 1) attaching the handle bar extension using 2 bolt/knob combos and 2) snapping on the right-side mulch discharge chute. Alternatively, you can leave off the side chute, pull off the rear mulching block, and attach the clippings collection fabric bag. The entire handle assembly is adjustable to 3 heights using the pair of built-in 90-degree twist knobs. There’s also a lever to adjust to 7 different cutting heights.

To prepare to mow, simply lift the battery cover flap on raised protrusion on the center-top of the mower, push in the battery until it clicks into place (release button is used when removing the battery), then lower the flap.

No messy, smelly gas or oil needed. No nauseating exhaust! The electric motor is far quieter than a gas engine; my toddlers fell asleep fine during my mowing. There’s none of the headaches of maintaining a gasoline engine: buy/store/pour jugs of gasoline, buy and keep engine oil topped off, buy fuel stabilizers, deal with spills, clean/replace spark plugs, burn off excess gasoline for off-season storage, etc.

To turn on, you push and hold the green button on the upper-right of the handle, then grasp the green lever arm together with the handle bar, then let go of the button. When you release lever, the mower turns off completely; there is no idle. To restart, you’ll need to repeat the hold-button and grasp-lever routine. There is no cord-yanking involved.

The mower is very easy to push (note it’s not self-powered), so I speed-walked most of the time. It’s easy to turn 180-degrees for parallel mowing. The blades cut very near to the outer edge of the wheels (see attached picture), so there’s minimal need for overlap. There’s a rubber rear skirt to protect you from any rock or debris projectiles, which is a godsend for my yard, full of landscape stones and sweet gum tree spike-balls.

The 2.0Ah battery from my leaf blower had plenty of power to mow the ¼ acre of greatly-overgrown grass and weeds (yesterday 5/17 was my first mow of the season), then power the blower to clean the mower. It’ll probably still have enough power for the string trimmer (on backorder), but I plan on buying either the 4.0Ah battery once it’s available or another 2.0Ah.

For storage, the handle bars easily fold over at the base for fast, compact storage. I actually have my mower resting vertically in the garage for maximum space savings (see my first picture). I feel it’s also light enough for most people to carry it to the basement for winter storage.

I’m very happy with the 80V mower and leaf blower so far. This Fall, I plan on selling my 24” gas snow thrower to replace with a GreenWorks 80V model as well.

Overall, good mower. Easy to move around. Cuts well. Fairly quiet. If your hearing is really good, you might want ear plugs. Mine's less than good and I barely notice the low speed. On high speed, that is noticeable. Almost no odor out of the box. Battery charger stinks first few times when charging batteries. Go into room and think 'what is that smell? yuck.' After charging a few times, odor just keeps going down. Barely noticeable now.

Cuts grass as tall as the motor housing. Be prepared to go slow though. When I did manage to kill it in thick grass nearly as tall as the motor (well above the front wheels), it likes to wait a few seconds before starting again. Starts right up (until the battery is out of juice).

Batteries last about as long as advertised. Didn't put a clock to mine. By the time one is used up, the other is charged on the charging device. I tend to stop and pull weeds or other stuff (like pine cones).

I can pull this out of the shed, fold the handle into place, put on the bagger and just go. It's easy, it works, and handles what my gas mowers can handle. Anything the mower leaves little bits of uncut stuff ... the grass was thick, damp, and resistant to cutting well ... even with the gas mowers, I'd have to do that area twice. The dry grass, even thick dry grass, it just cut it all. Just slow down a little if you find pieces of uncut stuff and it will get that too.

I like the bagger attachment. No more raking. My shoes are not covered in grass clippings. Picks up nearly all of what it cuts. I can't see anything down there but maybe it left something someone with better eyesight could detect. When the bag gets full, the weight shifts to the rear. Front wheels come off ground easily. You'll notice it's heavier in the rear, takes more effort to move, and if you keep going ... stuff will be left behind (cause the bag is full and it can't go in there). Empty the bag and you're all set.

Overall, I am very satisfied with this mower. No gas fumes. Unit itself doesn't stink. Battery charger odor diminishes with use (the more batteries I charge, the less it smells). I don't have to rake with the bag attachment. The two batteries allow me to keep going until ... well, my body won't "go" anymore. Use one battery, charge the other. Seemingly endless run time with just the two batteries. Of course, you might have to wait in between the batteries if you run one out faster than the other (like with really tall grass).

Mower cycles itself high and low depending on what is being cut. Does this automatically. I find that when it revs higher, it can leave some stuff behind. So, I just pause while it revs up, back the mower up a couple inches, and then go forward. Seems to leave nothing behind that way. The mower will cycle down to the lower speed on its own. I have cut grass higher than the front wheels and the mower stayed on the low setting. And I have cut grass shorter than the front wheels and had the mower go to high. Depends on the grass characteristics. Also, if using the bag, depends on how full the bag is. If the bag is full, you will be on high almost constantly. Change the bag and it will go back to low, unless ... of course ... you are in tough grass and it needs high.

The things I dislike are minor.

#1, the knobs on the handle.
These things spin on easily ... and off equally easily. I would prefer a design like at the bottom of the handle. Twist the handle to move the pin in and out. No screw, no knob to fall off. Something like that would have been better than the knobs that can (and do) spin right off when trying to fold and unfold the handle.

#2, the wire gets caught on the rear panel
When changing the bag, you lift up the rear panel. To get the bag's hooks onto the mower, you will likely need the rear panel almost vertical. This puts the panel above the wire that connects the mower to the safety button for starting the mower. Even though there is a sheath around that wire, the wire moves away from the metal handle and can get caught by the rear panel. So when you lower the panel, give an eye to the wire. Make sure it's clear or it will catch. It won't get sliced in two, but I doubt the wire sheath wants to be clamped down by the rear panel's retaining springs on a frequent basis.

#3, the bag is hard to empty
Okay, if you have a wide mouth can, you can just lift up the bag and shake it to your heart's content to get the stuff out. Got just a bag on the ground? Put the bag over the bagger with the grass, flip upside down, shake. And then you start to wonder why you are lifting the entire weight of what you mowed and shaking it to get the grass out. You can hold the bagger piece upside down and the grass won't fall out much. Getting the grass in is a breeze. Getting grass out ... is a delaying annoyance. I just scoop the grass out one gloved hand at a time into a trash bag, because I am not a body builder who wants to shake a full grass bag into a bag ... and the bag keeps shifting ... it goes everywhere on me or I'm tired or both. Still enjoy no raking, so a few minutes of rest while scooping grass doesn't bother me. The grass should come out easier.

Have not used the side discharge or the mulch. I'm so happy with the bag, that I'm going to keep using that. Cuts like my gas mower. Quieter. No fumes. Revs up when it needs to.

The EgoPower mowers are nice looking alternatives. Most of the decks are plastic. The voltage is 56V for their stuff instead of the 80V with the Green works mower. The Ego handle looks nicer (no knobs to fall off). The Ego can fold up into what looks like a smaller space and be stored on its side. That's neat. The LED lights on the Ego made little sense to me until I mowed tonight at dusk. Saves me from covering up with suncreen to go mow for a few hours ... I used the neighbor's yard light (ha ha) to see the grass. He didn't seem to mind. I wanted the metal deck so I got the Greenworks mower. I have a corded greenworks mower and that worked alright for me. I got tired of the cord for all the trees and obstacles around here. The battery mower is a dream. No cord to mess with. Mow when I want, where I want. Easy. No long wait times on battery charges either. About 30 mins and it's charged. I haven't made it back to the station with am empty battery before the one charging was already full.

The Ego mower with the metal deck was over $700 at Home Depot. The Greenworks mower was a more tolerable price point. The foam on the corded mower goes all the way around the corners of the handle. The foam on the battery mower stops at the corners. I thought it would bother me at first, but it doesn't. I don't seem to grab the handle at the side corners so it's no issue for me.

Greenworks could've used a non-sticky adhesive for the sticker on the safety bar. Sticky gunk. I wear gloves anyway so it doesn't bother me. I keep saying to myself, someday I'm going to get out the olive oil and rub that gunk off. The sticker on the motor housing has a wrinkle in it. Oh well, but it's their brand, the sticker ought to be better.

Oh, when folding the handle ... the metal rubs on itself and wears the paint off. So right where the knobs are, be prepared for scratches unless you want to treat it like a fragile egg when unfolding. When folding, it doesn't seem to rub as snugly.

So, yes, minor stuff I don't like. Very minor. It's a mower. Who cares about stickers? It does the job. I'm happy with it.

PS: Both Ego & Greenworks have metal blades mounted onto plastic parts. I was worried the blades might just shear off. I checked my corded Greenworks mower and it is the same deal, metal to plastic. No blades flying off. Whatever plastic they're using, it seems to hold up just fine to the stress of a whirling blade. If the Ego wasn't several hundred more than this mower for a metal deck, I might have given it a try. But their batteries are expensive if I wanted an extra one (ditto for Greenworks). The Greenworks mower already has two batteries and that's enough for me.

Yes, this is long winded. I was out mowing long enough to drain 2 batteries today, weed eat, and pull weeds. Multiple hours outside. Very happy with the mower overall.

I was initially hesitant about going with an electric mower, for a couple reasons. First, battery anxiety. I've used gas-powered mowers my entire life, and when they run out of juice, you just add more and continue. Batteries require charging time, so you can't just "add battery" and continue.

Actually, you can! With the two batteries that come with this mower, you can have one on the charger while you're mowing with the other one. They charge amazingly fast, so there should never be a point where both batteries are completely out of power. I swap frequently and have never even had to worry one bit. I also don't have to mess with smelly gasoline, or mixing messy oil. (cue the black-and-white video of some schlub clumsily spilling gasoline on themselves and dripping oil all over the driveway)

The second reason I was hesitant was due to the uncertainty over the amount of punch an electric mower would provide. Having used a variety of both gas-powered and electric lawn tools over the years, I vastly prefer gas as the battery-powered ones are usually meager and underpowered. Not only that, but if you get a battery-powered tool, you've only got a short time before it's out of juice, and if you use a corded one, you're limited to the distance of the annoying extension cord.

I'm glad to say that battery technology has caught up to where it needs to be. This is a seriously strong mower. After I received it and charged the batteries, I gave it a go on the lawn of my new home, which had previously been uncut for months. There were several patches of very tall grass that I know from experience would have stalled a lesser gas-powered mower. This one did not even flinch; it chewed through that grass like it wasn't even there. It was actually somewhat awe-inspiring, how quickly and easily it cut through tall and tough grasses. Another perk benefit is the noise...or lack thereof. This is a really quiet mower, which is great when you don't want to make a racket or are cutting the grass at a not-so-appropriate time of the day (really early or late).

All in all, I'm a convert. The only con I can see to this product is the price. It's quite expensive compared to a comparable gas mower. However, for the ease of use, no longer needing to mess with gas and oil, the cutting performance, and the fact that the battery system is interchangeable with plenty of other Greenworks lawn tools, this was a no-brainer for me.

Great design besides that it isn't all-wheel drive. I've had numerous other $400+ mowers and this is the best. No gas, no mess. No pollution, no noise pollution (obviously it's much quieter than gas powered mowers). I also got the Greenworks 80V trimmer with a battery so I have two batteries.

4 stars because the big negative for me is that it is rear wheel drive. Rear wheel drive works fine on completely dry and level grass. Each time I mow the rear wheels spin a few times which didn't happen with the all-wheel drive I had before this. The only other negative is that I emailed them twice at and never heard back from them - I had to call them.

I will update this review if I have any issues.
Update April 22 2017: It's still working great other than the fact that it's rear wheel drive.
Update December 07 2018: Still works great after two mowing seasons.

Absolutely love it. With the 4 amp hour battery I'm able to mow my lawn almost twice with it on a single charge (>4000 sq ft). It will mow it even with the 2 Amp hour battery as well and cuts beautifully right through wet grass of any length. Powerful motor for sure. So easy to change the bag best I have even had. And the wheels height adjustment is the easiest I have ever used it takes only a pound or two of force to move the lever and raise and lower the mower. You can do it with just your pinky seriously! Batteries charge rapidly so even a 2 Amp Hour is enough for most folks. The snow blower works well too that uses the same 80V battery (but only on dry snow).

A bit of background about me, I love electric vehicles for their low maintenance and quiet operation, so I have been changing over to electric for most of my devices.

I am "upgrading" from the TwinForce mower from Greenworks, only since I gave that mower away so I could have all the same batteries. The main improvement to this mower over the TwinForce is build quality. It has nice steel deck, better plastics, and sturdier axles/wheels, and overall heavier duty.

Warning: Be careful which version you buy, one doesn't have any batteries or charger with it. This is perfect if you already have those from some other device. For a standard 0.2 acre lot, you will want 2 of the 80 V 2 Ah batteries or 1 of the 4 AH batteries. I recommend 2 of the 2 Ah batteries since you can charge one in the rapid charger in the time it takes to burn through the other, so you can be constantly mowing and charging if you need more than 2 full charges.

Setup: This mower was a breeze to setup, basically attach the handle. I am not using the bag or side discharge, the mower does an excellent job mulching.

Use: The mower is 1 inch wider than my TwinForce, which might not seem like a lot, but if you consider the practical mowing distance is less than the 21" blade, the 1 inch makes a big difference. I would say I make 10% fewer passes. The weight is heavier, about the same as a gasoline push mower, but not bad. I do notice it is a bit more exercise to mow. In the summer I have to mow at the highest cut setting, which is barely high enough.

Performance: The mower has excellent power, feels more power than my gas mower, and it does a great job mulching. Better than either the TwinForce or the gas mower I had. I accidentally chopped cleanly through a large 1" stick laying in the yard that I missed, although that triggered the motor to stop, it didn't do any damage and restarted fine after I checked the blade.

The big drawbacks vs the TwinForce are that it only uses a single battery, meaning I have to swap batteries midway through my mow, and that it weighs a lot more. Also, the height doesn't seem to adjust up quite as high.

Batteries: The 80 V 2 Ah batteries are rated at 146 Wh, and last about the same as the old 40 V 4 Ah batteries (also rated same amount of power), but I think the mower is more powerful and more efficient. The best part is the rapid charger, which takes only 20 minutes to charge a battery most of the way, meaning you can mow pretty much non-stop if you have two batteries and swap them. It also has a cooling fan on it to keep the batteries from getting too hot. A point with Li-ion batteries, is they prefer to be stored at cool temperatures and at a low state of charge. Despite what the directions might say, you are better off to store the batteries nearly dead after mowing and charge before you mow the next time. Read up on Li-Ion storage at Battery University. This is where the quick charger is a huge benefit, just go pop the battery in the charger 30 minutes before you want to mow.

Basically, this mower replaces a premium gas push mower (not self propelled). It is a bit expensive, and for a better deal get one of the older TwinForce or other 40 V models, but this unit is also well worth the cost and feels a little less disposable than the other units. I wouldn't have upgraded if I wasn't trying to make all my devices use the same battery, but this mower is great if you are just looking at testing the electric mower waters. If so, be sure to buy one with a battery.

Very efficient and powerful when it needs to me. Draws 2.5 amps with no grass, and up to ~25 amps peak. Only slightly slowed down in the thickest foot tall grass. This makes a big difference as I run a business with this mower. My only complaint is that the blade is 20". It's not a 21" mower. The deck is overbuilt, which for most is a good thing. It could be lighter weight, but not a big deal. But yeah, this mower has changed my life.
Update: As for the batteries - the 2ah loses a lot of power in thick grass in the last half of it's charge. That's because it's pulling 10x the c rate, which is a lot of stress on the battery cells. GET THE 4AH battery for mowing. It should perform a lot better in demanding mowing conditions. I cut 6 to 8 lawns using only 6ah of battery. One complaint I have is the tire treads are not durable. They are falling off the wheels after about 600 lawns this season. Little stones and metal edging cut them up. Discharge chute needed to be cut wider for damp/heavy mowing. Blade could have more 'lift' but that's the price you pay for efficiency.

I've only used it one time. It is very quiet compared to a gas mower. It is also very light. I live on a half acre lot. The battery did not last long enough to do the entire lawn without having to recharge it. I had not mowed the lawn since October (lawn was mowed in the 3rd week of March) and we have quite few 70 ft. pine trees. The mower was able to cut/shred up small branches and pine cones without a problem. The grass catcher is tiny, but I only had to empty it 3 times. I am guessing this is because the mower cuts everything into very fine pieces....just a guess. The one button push-start worked amazingly well. I hope this machine continues to perform as well as it did the first time. I have had very bad luck with gas mowers, so at the moment, this one seems to be my saving grace in the lawn mowing world.

This mower is simply fantastic. I have two gas mowers, neither of which will start - despite my careful maitenance, draining fuel, etc. I bought this mower after using the excellent Greenworks 80v chainsaw - and I'm blown away by the great design and performance here as well.

- starts every single time with the push of a button
- runs almost silently
- NO GAS *or* OIL! Flip it right over to clean it or inspect the blade - nothing leaks out!!!
- Fantastic mulching mower - in fact, best I've ever seen. You won't believe what kind of tall weeds, small branches, etc. this will chop into fine pieces, let alone grass. This mower is a mulching beast!
- Mulching, bagging or side-chute all included, an easily switchable
- Mower will intelligently run at a slower speed if it detects little resistance on the blade. This extends battery life, and is almost unnoticeable. It does not affect mower performance at all.
- I can mow an entire acre on a 4.0amp battery after a 30-min charge. I can do about .5 to .75 on the smaller battery.
- Mower is much lighter than gas models.
- Nothing to maintain, except to ensure the blade is sharp (perhaps once per season)
- As with many mowers, there is a rubber mat that drags behind the mower to prevent debris from hitting the operator. When pulling the mower backwards, the edge of the rubber mat goes under the mower, and the edge has gotten a little chewed up.

I thoroughly recommend all 80v Greenworks products I've tried - this mower, the 18" chainsaw, string trimmer and the blower.

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