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Battery Strimmer & Blower

Over winter we'll be looking to re-fresh our strimmer kit, and possibly onw of the blowers. In the main, we have Stihl petrol strimmers and blowers (a couple of handheld and 1 older backpack).

One thing that struck me was the large push in battery machinery at Saltex, as though it is/about to be mainstream. We we're impressed by the offerings of Stihl and Husqy, with others providing wild card comparisions.

Pellenc seemed good quality, but overpriced compared to the newer competitors.

We've been discussing as a team, plus I had a look at the Stihl battery backpack & blower & strimmer today and was happy with their performance.

The battery pack is the new Ar3000 with almost 30Ah capacity, and felt comfortable on the back and the blower felt as good as the petrol handheld, but not as powerfull as the petrol backback.

The figures say that we'll get around 1.5-2.5hrs continuous use out of the strimmer and blower. Which would be OK, just, for a days mowing support.

I also see benefits in servicing,  fuel and noise reduction, oh and vibration reduction with the blower especially.

So, how do people use the battery equipment - charge overnight, have an in-van inverter, lots of smaller batteries etc. We're happy with the power and usage, but I'm worried about having enough charge. My technicians normally head straight home after last job, and so they would be responsible for overnight charging. We'd need to log this as it'll add up cost to them pretty quickly. Was wondering if using an inverter and always having on charge between jobs would be suffient most of the time.

How does the battery stuff stack up day to day with full usage.

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Replies

  • I will be very interested in what other people's experiences are with this system. It's something I will look into eventually once my current set up require replacing.
  • PRO
    We've started using a Makita blower as we have a few Makita bits and pieces already. We have an inverter in the van it goes in and a total of 6 batteries and 3 chargers (takes 18mins to charge each battery).

    No good for all day blowing of leaves but handy for quick bits here and there. On full power it will go through 2 batteries in under 10 minutes but if used carefully then 25 minutes is feasible on a set.

    We have asked Makita for a demo if a strimmer and hedge trimmers but haven't heard back from them yet...
    • PRO
      I forgot to add that the performance of the blower is really impressive but I cannot see it replacing all of our petrol blowers, at least in the imminent future.
  • PRO

    Just estimated recharging costs using mains electricty, looks like under 1p for the smaller batteries and 10p for around 30Ah backpacks.

    • PRO

      It's negligible isn't it?

      You probably waste that much in fuel when you fill up the cans and then the machines (..not forgetting oil :( )

      Many years ago, Etesia issued a great running cost ROI spreadsheet showing Pellenc gear Vs traditional fuel powered machines, whilst optimistic at the time, I wonder how it now stands...?

  • PRO

    Yep, we spend around £200pcm on unleaded & two stroke. Most of that would be for mowers, aerators and scarifiers, but I reckon £30 pcm vs £3 electricity, so a good £250 pa saving on fuel. Will be much more for those that use them 8hrs per day.

    • You don't appear to be allowing for replacing the batteries when they've outlived themselves.

      • PRO

        I'd suggest they will become insignificant, but currently Li-ion have no 'memory' issues so should last over a thousand charging cycles.

        Technology marches forward and suppliers (ie Oregon) state they will have 8amp batteries avaialble within 12 months. If parallels continue (ie that seen in mobile phones etc) then the cost of batteries purchsed at the time becomes insignifcant, leaving only damage or the desire to have mutliple batteries to consider

        Interesting to note you can now buy 12v jump start packs using new battery technology about the size of several cigg packs for around £50-£100 which will deal with diesel engines.Amazing and can be recharged in-Van.

  • PRO

    My thinking is that we'd get 4 years out of an electric strimmer and battery pack. It's an assumption.

    We get 2 years out of a petrol strimmer, and have them serviced/repaired twice per year, plus we change spark plugs every so often.

    So overall when you look at fuel/electricity, servicing and replacement, I think battery will come out slightly ahead. Comfort wise for technicians they come out far ahead.

    However, I'm worried about people forgetting to charge, or running out later in the day. A few incidences there will negate benefits.

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