Last Updated on October 2, 2023 by Kyle Whitley
I have been asked this question many times. Are electric leaf blowers any good?
The short answer is yes, electric leaf blowers can get the job done. They can easily handle the same duties as a gas powered leaf blower. Electric leaf blowers are good at cleaning up leaves and grass clippings in small to medium-sized yards.
When people think of electric blowers, they think of the corded blowers that have been in use for decades. While that is true, some electric leaf blowers are corded and require an extension cord; now, cordless battery-powered models are rapidly taking over the leaf blowing world.
Table of Contents
- 1 Types of Electric Leaf Blowers
- 2 Is an Electric Leaf Blower Right For You?
- 3 When is an Electric Leaf Blower Not Right For You?
- 4 Electric Leaf Blowers vs. Gas Powered Leaf Blowers
- 5 Who Makes Electric Leaf Blowers
- 6 Electric Leaf Blowing Tips
- 7 Summing it Up: Electric Leaf Blowers are Good
Types of Electric Leaf Blowers
Electric leaf blowers come in two basic types: corded and cordless.
Corded leaf blower models require an extension cord to power them, which means they’re not portable. While they may not be portable, they have a nearly endless power supply as long as they are plugged in.
Cordless leaf blower models are powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. This makes them portable, but they have limited runtime. Having extra batteries on hand is a must.
So depending on your size of yard, you might prefer either a cordless or corded model. I own several cordless models, both handheld and even a backpack cordless blower. There are, however, a few things you might want to consider if you are looking to move to an electric leaf blower.
Pros of Using an Electric Leaf Blower
- Quieter than gas models
- Less maintenance than gas leaf blowers
- Clean operation (no exhaust gases or fumes)
- Nearly Endless Runtime with Corded Models
- Portability and Light Weight with Cordless leaf blower Models
Cons of Using an Electric Leaf Blower
- Runtime for Cordless leaf blower models can be shorter than gas leaf blowers
- Extension cord requirements limit portability for corded leaf blowers
- Battery cost for cordless models since you will need more than one battery
Is an Electric Leaf Blower Right For You?
An electric leaf blower is an excellent tool for cleaning up leaves and grass clippings from your lawn. However, you should know that some models are better suited for specific tasks.
Corded models are great for cleaning small to medium-sized areas such as driveways, decks, and garages. Generally, all of those areas have access to an outdoor or indoor power plug so that you can be within reach of an extension cord.
You can even use corded models to clean your yard as long as it isn’t broader or longer than your extension cord.
Cordless leaf blower models shine when you need to be portable or have more extensive or remote areas that might need cleaning. With today’s brushless motors and high capacity lithium-ion batteries, you have plenty of runtime and power to get the job done.
When is an Electric Leaf Blower Not Right For You?
While electric leaf blowers are usually very capable for most people, there are some circumstances where an electric leaf blower might not be the best choice for your situation.
If you have a larger lawn with many trees, then an electric leaf blower might now fit your needs. I say this for two reasons.
Portability of Corded Leaf Blowers
First, you don’t want to drag the power cord and extension cord all over your yard if you use a corded leaf blower. You might have the power to run all day, but there are limits to extension cord length that can safely be run.
The runtime of Cordless Leaf Blowers
Secondly, if you need to be portable, runtime could be an issue with a cordless leaf blower. Blowing leaves for hours on end will not be a good fit for an electric battery powered leaf blower. Unless you have spare batteries on hand and some fast chargers to keep the batteries in constant rotation.
I hate even to admit this, but I do keep my old gas Husquvarna backpack leaf blower around for when the leaves get extreme at my home.
I have a decent-sized yard with many trees, and I use my electric leaf blowers 95% of the time. I do have several extra batteries that keep the blowers running, but even then, there are limitations on how long I can run the blowers at a given time.
If you have to run your leaf blower for extended periods (hours) and need to be a decent distance away from your home, then an electric leaf blower, either corded or cordless, might not meet your needs.
Electric Leaf Blowers vs. Gas Powered Leaf Blowers
When comparing electric leaf blowers to gas leaf blowers, you need to consider a few things:
- Environmental Impact
Electric Leaf Blowers: Corded and Cordless
Maintenance: They also save money because gas powered leaf blowers require a lot of care. There are no oil changes, fuel maintenance, spark plugs, or air filters to replace.
Noise: Generally speaking, electric both corded and cordless blowers are much quieter than gas leaf blowers. Some are not even as loud as normal conversation decibel levels.
Runtime: With corded leaf blowers, you have continuous runtime as long as you pay your power bill. Cordless blowers generally can run between 20 minutes – 1 hour, depending on battery size, throttle level, and debris you’re trying to blow.
Power: Electric blowers, either corded or cordless, have power levels MPH (miles per hour) and CFM (cubic feet per minute) levels with gas leaf blowers. Electric leaf blowers have made great strides in the last five years to shorten the gap in power levels between gas and electric leaf blowers.
Environmental Impact: Electric leaf blowers are better for the environment because they use less fuel and produce fewer emissions.
Cost: However, electric leaf blowers can be expensive, especially the cordless battery powered backpack leaf blowers, so you need to consider how much you want to spend on your lawn care.
Corded leaf blowers can generally be had for less than $100.
I have found that I have used my leaf blowers a lot more since I went electric. I don’t have to deal with smelling like gas after using them or often putting on hearing protection because they are much quieter.
Gas Powered Leaf Blowers
Maintenance: Gas leaf blowers require a good deal of maintenance. Depending on the model, you have to mix fuel (oil and gas) and maintain that fuel when not in use. To keep the blower running at peak performance, you have to change spark plugs, fuel filters, and air filters.
Noise: Gas leaf blowers are loud. It is not only the noise of the blower but the small gas engine that also generates noise. Running a gas blower should not be done without hearing protection.
Runtime: As long as your fuel doesn’t run out, you have a continuous runtime. Fuel is generally readily available even if you run out and need to refill your gas canister at the local station.
Power: Gas blowers have high power levels MPH (miles per hour) and CFM (cubic feet per minute) numbers. Gas leaf blowers can handle the most challenging leaf blowing tasks, which is why they are generally the tool of choice for professional landscapers.
Environmental Impact: Since gas leaf blowers have small gas engines attached, they emit emissions and fumes while running. Small gas engines aren’t efficient, so they put off more emissions and fumes than your typical car engine.
Cost: Gas powered leaf blowers are generally inexpensive or comparatively priced when compared to cordless leaf blowers. You can get a pretty powerful high end gas leaf blower for the same price as a cordless leaf blower.
I keep my gas powered backpack leaf blower for the runtime needed to clean up leaves when the leaf drop has gotten out of hand at my home, but as I mentioned earlier, that is a rare occasion.
Who Makes Electric Leaf Blowers
Pretty much all power tool manufacturers produce electric leaf blowers. Here is a list of the few you might want to check out:
Electric Leaf Blowing Tips
Electric leaf blowers are great for cleaning up leaves from your yard. Here are a few tips to make that electric leaf blowing experience a little better.
- Blow your leaves in a set pattern. Much like you would when cutting your lawn. Work your way from one side to another. For instance, I blow my leaves from right to left in my yard, pushing the leaves toward a wooded area where they are left to decompose.
- Extension cord management. When using a corded blower, ensure that you watch the extension cord, so you don’t trip or entangle yourself in the cord as you progress around your yard.
- Get some extra batteries. If you are constantly using your blower like I am, you need to keep some spare batteries on hand to ensure you aren’t waiting on the charger.
- Drying your car. A little pro tip here, if you wash your car often at home, using an electric blower, either cordless or corded, will significantly reduce your drying time.
- Not just for leaves. Leaf blowers have many uses, from sweeping off pool decks, snow removal, sweeping sidewalks, cleaning your lawn mower, and keeping your decks and patios neat. There are tons of uses for an electrical leaf blower around your home.
Summing it Up: Electric Leaf Blowers are Good
I may be biased here since this is an electric lawn blog, but I believe that electric leaf blowers have their place in your lawn tool collection.
There are many different types of leaf blowers. Some use gasoline, and others use electricity. They come with varying degrees of features and capabilities.
The best thing about these tools is that they allow us, homeowners, to clean up our yards without having to worry about getting too dirty ourselves.