Up In Smoke
Written: Apr 17, 2004 (Updated Apr 22, 2004)
a Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Pros:Quiet, no gas stink, low maintenance.
Cons:Motor burned up on the third use. Seems to leave a lot of stragglers.
The Bottom Line: Who knows why this one burned up- Maybe I just got a lemon. Other than the burning up, it's performance was acceptable, and definitely easy to use.
I needed a mower for our .15 acre yard. My husband insisted that a reel mower wasn't going to cut it, since we've got a lot more territory now than our little downtown place did. I looked at some gas mowers, but the maintenance requirements are kind of daunting. Who wants to deal with gas, oil, and spark plugs, when you can just plug and play? So we settled on the B&D 19" electric mulching mower. Hubby says that my in-laws have had theirs for 15 years, so it's gotta be good, right? Also, we already have a Black & Decker weed eater and hedger, and they have been working well so far.
On the first mow I used the highest grass setting and the bagger, since the grass was really out of control. It worked fine. There were quite a few stragglers, but I chalked it up to the grass being too long.
On the second mow I set the blades one notch lower, and put in the mulching insert. Mowed the whole yard in one pass, didn't have to empty the bag, and I felt like I was doing something good by mulching the lawn. Neat. I liked that the grass didn't go flying out everywhere. The lawn still looked a little shaggy, but I figured I could trim it up on the next mow. The mower is pretty quiet, and there's no gas smell, just that great smell of fresh cut grass.
On the third mow, I set the blades to the lowest mulching setting (about 2"), and went over our teeny front yard. The grass hadn't grown much in the last three days, so the motor wasn't sounding strained or anything. It still left more stragglers than I'd like, but gave an overall tidy appearance. I finished with the front yard and was ready to head for the expanse of the back yard. I let go of the switch and the motor wound down, and SQUEEEK GRIND! It expired with a puff of smoke.
I took it back to the Home Depot, and the returns clerk told me that they have been seeing an awful lot of the B&D mowers being returned with burnt out motors. So, instead of exchanging it, I am back in the market for a new mower.
***Update. We got a new electric mower last weekend. It's a Bolens, which doesn't seem to be available for review yet. So far, it is fantastic and it seems to have much more power than the B&D. I look forward to submitting a full review if it gets added to the site...
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