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The first thing to note about cordless brush cutters is that they are not to be confused with cordless strimmers. You see, they look identical and in reality, it’s difficult to tell the difference. So what really is the difference. Well, they’re designed with more demanding brush cutting in mind that most strimmers are not up to the job to do. They will easily strim through thick nettles, overgrown brush, brambles, sapling and anything thing else they come across. Many have steel blades rather than thin strimmer line and the ones that do have strimmer line, have a much heavier gage of strimmer line.
These machines are equipped with convenient features like a wide cutting width and brushless motors that support varied working speeds and can handle demanding jobs. If you are confused about which brush cutter to get, worry not; we have done the heavy lifting for you. Below are five reliable cordless brush cutters with different features to offer at different price points.
While our Best Pick, the Makita 36V DUR368AZ Brush Cutter, is a bit expensive, a strong 36V motor powers it for optimal performance. This model highlighted below runs quietly, supports fast speeds of 6500rpm, and comes with safety goggles to keep you safe. There is more to tell about these products, so read on to find more information.
Top 5 Cordless Brush Cutters Reviews
1. Makita 36V DUR368AZ Brush Cutter
Top of the list is the Makita 36V DUR368AZ Cordless Brush Cutter which is powered by a reliable brushless motor. This simply means it’s more durable and operates less noisily (especially compared to the petrol alturnatives).
This model is powered by two 18V batteries which give you a max 36V to support three adjustable speed levels to manage the thickness of the vegetation. A feature it also has that is not available on most models is a reverse function. This is super handy for quickly untangling growth from around the blade. Anyone can appreciate this feature but professionals will find it a great time saver and as every professional gardener knows, time is money on the job.
The brush cutter also features ADT (Automatic Torque Drive) technology to sustain constant speed (3 of them) and consistent torque for an even cut.
Watch the video by Fix It Now where he reviews this very model and compares it to the petrol alternative
The 36V brush cutter supports speeds of up to 6500rmp, and it possesses a cutting head width of 35cm; therefore, you can attend to large areas quicker. It has an aluminium motor head that is capable of withstanding some impact to provide durability. Again is the small features like this which make this model more of a professional model that’s designed to last.
The brush cutter is comfortable to use thanks to its ergonomic offset bike handles that balance its 3.4kg weight and make it easily manoeuvrable, much lighter than a petrol alternative and much quieter too.
As briefly mentioned earlier, in case the cutting head tangles with the brush, there is a reverse rotation function to help quickly clear the blade. This brush cutter comes with a hex wrench to facilitate smooth blade changes, which saves time too. While talking about this, it comes with both a standard type line trimmer but more heavy-duty and a steel blade cutter head too. The line strimmer is great for maintaining lawns, lighter work while the steel blade will tackle those out of control areas of thick grass and brush.
For safety purposes, this model is also fitted with AFT (Active Feedback Sensing Technology) to prevent the motor from operating if the blade rotation is obstructed. This, in turn, prevents the user from injuring themselves when the brush cutter hits something extremely hard, perhaps a rock hidden under the thick brush growth and there is some kickback.
Another crucial safety feature present in this model is the two-stage trigger switch to reduce the chances of someone powering the brush cutter accidentally. This doesn’t really help performance but again these machines can be dangerous if they are accidentally started.
Also accompanying the model are safety goggles, a shoulder belt for support, and an accessory bag. The manufacturer offers a one-year warranty that assures you that the model will last for a while.
- Powered by two 18V lithium-ion batteries for a total of 36V.
- A reliable brushless motor that is more durable and long-lasting.
- Features a robust aluminium motorhead with a nylon cutting head and steel blade cutting blade.
- Supports a soft start and variable three speeds plus reverse.
- Comes with Active Feedback Sensing Technology and a two-stage trigger switch for safety.
- Offers a cutting head width of 35cm.
- It has offset bike handles and harness that are comfortable to use.
- Comes with accessories for convenience.
- Backed by a 3-year warranty when you register online.
- Compatible with 36V Makita batteries.
- Operates much more silently than petrol alternatives.
- Not compatible with Makita G-Series batteries.
The Makita 36V DUR368AZ Brush Cutter is robust, and it gives good value for money because it gives a powerful performance and is a machine that’s designed to last. Overall, I really like that it’s lightweight compared to the petrol alternatives I’m used to using plus the 3 speeds and soft start are great features as it gives you more versatility.
If you already have Makita tools with the 18V batteries, there is no need to buy new batteries or a charger as this model is compatible with Makita battery packs apart from those in the G-series.
This makes it an affordable option and really where your search should stop. However, if you don’t already have batteries, it will become expensive once you add in the two batteries and charger compared to some alternatives. For professional or those looking for a serious machine, this will be fine but for more domestic use, this is probably not going to make sense. That’s why our next model below by Greenworks may be a better choice for you.
2. Greenworks Cordless Trimmer and Scythe 2-in-1 GD40BC
The Greenworks Cordless Trimmer and Scythe 2-in-1 GD40BC is a great affordable model for more domestic use and is powered by an impressive 40V lithium-ion battery to operate optimally, this is in theory, more than the Makita model but it’s not as simple as that, unfortunately.
The easy-to-start model offers two functions under one structure as it can be used as a standard strimmer or as a scythe which is another word for brushcutter using a steel blade.
It has a 40cm wide cutting head for the trimmer function and a smaller 25cm cutting metal blade for the scythe function. With that wide cutting width and 2mm automatic thread feed (what a great feature), it is easy to cover a wide area at a go.
This model is fitted with a strong digitally controlled motor that operates quietly. Even though the model has a powerful motor, it has a low vibration feature to reduce the user’s exhaustion. The cordless model supports a maximum speed of 5300rpm so it does have less overall power than the Makita model.
Check out the video below by Test of Time who did a review on this model after two years to get a real understanding of what it’s like to own this model.
The cordless trimmer comes with ergonomic handles that rotate for convenience, depending on your working position. There is a primary handle and a secondary handle along the aluminium rod to help you balance the machine’s weight. It also comes with a shoulder strap to help balance the machine’s weight while working and during transportation.
If you already had Greenworks tools with 40V (2-4Ah) batteries, you don’t need to buy any additional batteries for this model but it already comes with two 40V 2Ah batteries so this isn’t a problem if you don’t already have compatible Greenworks tools. You can easily interchange these batteries to provide a longer running time; while one battery is charging, the other will be used.
The cordless strimmer is not light, weighing in at 8.04kg, but the weight is balanced; hence you won’t strain your muscles too much. This model is backed by a two-year warranty too that permits you to rest easy as the quality is reliable.
- Power 40V Cordless Strimmer with line strimmer and separate steel brushcutter head.
- Comes with an automatic thread feed for the line trimmer, no need to alter manuualy.
- Strimmer head can be rotated to strim the edge of lawns.
- Features a strong 40V motor to power variable speeds.
- Low noise and vibration model.
- Possesses comfortable using rotating handles.
- Compatible with other Greenworks 40V batteries and comes with two 40L 2Ah batteries.
- Comes with a shoulder strap to balance the weight of the machine.
- Accompanied by a 2-year warranty for full peace of mind.
- Battery life could be better.
The Greenworks Cordless Trimmer and Scythe 2-in-1 GD40BC are ideal for those who want a powerful 2-in-1 model for more domestic use. This machine is efficient and heavier than our Best Pick, but it is manoeuvrable and much more affordable.
It comes with two 40V batteries and a charger so it’s ready to sue out the box, great if this is your first cordless tool. We find this model provides good value for money, especially for domestic use, due to its ergonomic design. What you may have noticed is that it comes with 2Ah batteries, which means they have a fairly low capacity so shorter run time than say the 4Ah battery. They last long enough for most gardens but I would maybe consider getting the larger 40V 4Ah battery as a spare to up the run time. Overall though for general use around the gardens, I would choose this every time if on a lower budget.
3. DeWalt 54V DCM571 XR Flexvolt Brush Cutter
The Dewalt DCM571 XR Flexvolt Brush Cutter is powered by a brushless motor protected by a metal housing and is a great alternative to our Best Pick but comes with battery and charger included for doing some serous brush cutting.
It provides enough power to compete with petrol models all day long without being too heavy or noisy. The 54V model needs a lithium-ion battery to sustain variable speeds of 5600rpm and 6600rpm. The first thing to note is that it comes with a very impressive 54V 9Ah battery, you can experience a decent running time of over an hour to complete your work without the need of recharging. This really is a real workhorse deisgned with the most demanding jobs in mind also its also great for general strimmer.
This model possesses a cutting width of 38cm with teh thick line strimmer; therefore, one can work fast and cover a larger surface area. The machine features a durable 2mm line diameter to slice through vegetation neatly. It also comes with steel cutting blades for the thick brush which is obviously important for our review as this is what we are focusing on.
You can work with this model for extended periods because it is light, weighing only 4.6kgs. It has a primary and secondary handle to help the user balance the machine’s weight while moving around. Additionally, the brush cutter is equipped with a shoulder strap, so it should be easier to cut through large areas of overgrowth.
- Features a 54V brushless motor that is quiet and durable.
- Includes powerful 54V battery with large 9Ah capacity for longer run times.
- Offers a wide cutting width of 38cm with the line trimmer.
- Also includes a steel cutter blade for thick brush.
- Supports variable speeds for optimal performance.
- It provides a decent running time of over an hour.
- Comes with two handles and a strap to balance the weight of the machine.
- Features a twisted robust cutting line with a diameter of 2mm.
- Provides good value for money.
- 3 years warranty when you register online for full peace of mind.
If you’re looking for a good alturnative to our Best Pick my Makita, one that is designed for demanding jobs or for professional strimming and brush cutting, this is a great alternative. This model is probably on par with Makita but for those looking for an option that includes the battery and charger, this wins simply on that. Performance-wise, there not much in it. Both machines are excellent, both have plenty of power and are defined to last with advanced brushless motors. I suppose it really boils down to which brand you prefer and if you want a battery included as standard.
4. Einhell Agillo Power X-Change Cordless Brush Cutter
Next, we have the Einhell Agillo Power X-Change Cordless Brush Cutter that is perfect for keeping your lawn in good condition and is a good alternative to the Greenworks model within a similar price bracket.
The model can be used as a standard bump n feed line system or a scythe 3 blade cutter for those more demanding stick brush such as brambles. It also features a brushless motor that works optimally with minimal wear and tear. Interchanging between the two functions is straightforward because it has a spindle lock system to keep the cutting heads in position. It just basically means its easy to switch from line trimmer for general strimming to the steel brush.
This model offers speeds of up to 6300rpm which is pretty good, and you can adjust the speed accordingly using the electronic speed control, something that has become a common feature on the best models.
Also, because the model relies on two 18V lithium-ion batteries, the batteries’ amperage will affect the length of the running time. A 4Ah battery will give a longer running time than a 2Ah batteries, so when purchasing the battery and charger (which you do need to do separately take this into account, consider the running time you need. To give you an idea, the 2.5Ah batteries will give around 35 minutes of run time, teh 4ah will give nearly double at 65 minutes and the largest 6.0 Ah battery will give a very impressive 90 minutes. However, the higher the Ah capacity rating, the more expensive the batteries.
Like all the other models, the brush cutter is compatible with the whole range of cordless tools within the range you may already have. This means if you do, you will already have the Einhell power exchange battery system and can just get the bare tool. If you don’t then you will have to buy two batteries and a charger but at least you can choose the battery to match your needs.
The model offers a cutting width of 30cm so a little smaller than the Greenworks alternative which is 40cm for the line strimmer but the cutting width of the 3 blade brush cutter is 25.5cm which is basically the same. This makes it suitable for small-medium areas.
As you would expect, this brush cutter comes with a quality strap and bike handles that balance the 6kg machine as you walk around. It even has a wall holder to facilitate safe storage when the machine is not in use. The quality of the model is reliable as it comes with a 2-year warranty in case of any issues.
- Powered by two powerful 18V batteries for optimum performance
- Comes with ergonomic bike handles which some people find easier to you.
- Provides a cutting width of 30cm with line strimmer and a 3 tooth blade width of 25cm for cutting thick brush.
- Compatible with Einhell power exchange batteries.
- Possesses quality strap for easy manoeuvrability.
- Runs quietly.
- Comes with a 2-year warranty for extra peace of mind.
- A bit heavy.
The Einhell Agillo Power X-Change Cordless Brush Cutter is suitable for domestic purposes rather than professional use because of its size but its an excellent alternative to the Greenworks brush cutter.
The model is comfortable to use thanks to its bike handles; however, it can get heavy when used for prolonged periods so take a break when needed. The brush cutter gives a decent running time but this obviously depends on the battery you choose, the 18V 6Ah will give you around 90 minutes. Overall for those on a budget, this offers excellent value for money and is a pretty decent tool to consider.
5. Ryobi OBC1820B 18V ONE+ Brush Cutter
The Ryobi OBC1820B 18V ONE+ Brush Cutter is a high-performance model operating on 18V batteries. This is probably better than Greenworks and Einhell models but not quite to the same level as the Makita or DeWalt model. With this model running on Ryobi 18V batteries and a lot of people already using Ryobi cordless tools, if this is you, then this model is probably the best choice for you as you want to need to order batteries which will save you some money.
This 18V model like the other brush cutters in this review uses both a trimmer head and a blade to cut through long grass and tough weeds. You get a blade with a cutting width of 20cm, this is the brush cutter with the hardened steel triarc cutting blade. It also comes with a line trimmer with a diameter of 30cm to cover a sizeable surface area at once. It’s worth noting that the maximum cutting line diameter it can house is 1.6mm, which is a little thin, but it works effectively on well-maintained lawns. Don’t forget for more demanding jobs, you still have the steel cutting blade to use.
The 5.1kg model is equipped with bike handles which some people prefer, for me personally, I prefer both types but it does have a soft but firm grip for easy manoeuvrability.
There is no need to purchase a battery or a charger if you already own Ryobi Tools that use 18V batteries, i’m assuming many of my readers do with Ryobi being very popular in the UK. Finally the brush cutter comes with a 3-year warranty to give you peace of mind.
- Features ergonomic soft-grip bike handles.
- Offers a 30cm line trimmer for easy tasks and a 20cm TriAr stainless steel cutting blade for tough brush.
- It has a strap to promote user comfort.
- Compatible with 18V one+ battery system.
- Backed by a 3-year warranty for full peace of mind.
Those looking for a lightweight brush cutter will find the Ryobi OBC1820B 18V ONE+ Brush Cutter a good choice. It may not come with a battery or charger but if you already own Ryobi 18V garden tools, interchange the batteries. It is an easy-to-assemble machine, and it is an affordable model even with a 5Ah battery and charger for those looking for something a little more affordable. Finally, this model has a 3-year warranty.
Before you spend your money, you want to ensure that you are purchasing the right model so as not to get the wrong product. So with all these products in the market, how do you select the best cordless brush cutter?
Well, this is simple if you make the considerations listed below in regards to the features available. First things first, let us look at what brush cutters are and what they are used for in the garden:
What do brush cutters do?
Brush cutters are convenient tools used in gardening to attend to the more demanding strimming jobs most standard trimmers with nylon strimmer line can’t cut through effectively. The brush cutters include a steel cutting blade or a thicker than normal strimmer line that cuts through shrubs, brambles, long grass, nettles and thick brush in general which makes them great for orchards, paddocks or just overgrown areas. These models use petrol, electricity or use batteries to run which was our focus in this review.
Some of the things to consider before buying a cordless brush cutter include:
When you look at your garden or lawn, what types of plants are more prevalent? Is it soft grass or tough vegetation such as brambles, nettles and overgrown brush? A strimmer such as the ones we reviewed here can work fine for soft vegetation and tidying lawn edges, but a brush cutter is more suitable for overgrown vegetation.
Some models offer both the grass trimmer and the brush cutter function. This was the case for all but the Ryobi model in this review.
The size of the garden affects the size of the brush cutter you get. If you have a large garden, you should look for a model with a wide cutting width to cover a large surface area in one motion. However, the larger the brush cutter, the heavier it will be, leading to strain. If you are working in a small area with tight corners, pick a lightweight brush cutter with a small cutting head for easier manoeuvrability.
Also, be sure to check the brush cutter’s height so that you don’t work in an uncomfortable position. Tall people should find models with a longer handle, while short people can settle for medium-length handles. Some brush cutters come with a telescopic handle, but they cost a little more than the regular models.
Types of cutting systems
Brush cutters and grass trimmers rely on either nylon cutting lines or steel blades to get the work done. Cutting lines are advantageous because they slice through soft vegetation with ease, and it is affordable to manufacture. In most cases, the cutting line is made from durable nylon and supported by a durable spool.
The cutting line can be single, although it is better to work with double cutting lines for durability’s sakes. This line is released manually, or automatically through a bump feed depending on the model that you purchase.
Apart from cutting lines, blades are also popular because they cut through thick vegetation with ease and this is what you’re really looking for, models with blades. The motor powers the plastic or metal blades to high speeds to present a clear cut. While blades are effective for thick vegetation, they are prone to damage when they hit hard objects. You can choose a model that offers both the cutting lines and the blades to interchange between the two functions when needed which can be very useful.
Wide cutting width can save you some time, but it may present challenges when handling hard-to-reach areas. In most cases, models with cutting widths between 20cm and 30cm are ideal for small to medium areas, while 30-39 cm models suit medium to large areas. Any cutting widths over 40cm are ideal for covering large areas. It is best to consider the size of the work area and select accordingly.
The heavier the model, the more you need well-positioned handles for better balance. The majority of the brush cutters come with two handles that are padded to provide a soft grip. You will find others with bike handles for easy manoeuvrability, especially if the brush cutters are heavy. Some people just prefer the bike handle design.
Whichever model you settle on, make sure that the handles are ergonomic to avoid stressing your body as you work. Brush cutters are normally accompanied by straps to balance the machine’s weight together with the handles for stability.
Lithium-ion batteries power cordless brush cutters; therefore, it is important to get quality batteries with large capacities. With higher capacity batteries such as 5Ah, the higher the Ah rating the longer they usually last, you can work for long before recharging.
If you are a professional, buy a model that gives a running time of more than half an hour, even at high speeds, to work uninterrupted. You can purchase several battery packs to facilitate a continuous supply of power when needed. It’s also worth noting that the price of batteries increases drastically the higher the capacity. With this in mind, if you have a small area there is no need to buy a very large capacity battery and waste money.
If you purchase a model that offers a cutting head with a blade and line trimmer, you don’t want to bring out the toolbox every time the cutting heads need switching. There are brush cutters in the market that use a spindle lock for easy interchanges. A model with easy to change cutting heads is a blessing as it saves you time when when time is a premium to you.
Low vibration and Noise
A brush cutter with a low vibration motor is friendlier to the muscles as it reduces exhaustion experienced by the user. When it comes to brush cutters with brushless motors, most of them have low vibration features, and they operate relatively quietly, especially compared to the petrol models. If you are sensitive to loud noises, make sure to check out a brush cutter’s decibel rating to gauge how loud it will be.
How do I maintain my brush cutter?
There are a few things you can do to ensure your brush cutter stays in good condition, and these include;
- Clean your brush cutter after every use to avoid the build-up of dirt that may affect the blade’s sharpness or the effectiveness of the trimmer line.
- Inspect the machine often so that you can notice any damage or lose parts that need repair.
- Re-sharpen blunt blades or replace old cutting lines to maintain a neat cut every time you use the brush cutter.
- Store the brush cutter away from human traffic to avoid any accidents or accidental damage to the machine.
- Avoid dipping the motor in water as you clean because it will affect the brush cutter’s electrical components.
Can brush cutters be dangerous?
Yes, brush cutters can be dangerous, especially when they encounter hard objects like stones. The unexpected kickback or flying objects can harm the user, and that is why some models like our best pick come with safety glasses. We always recommend wearing safety gear such as long pants and shirts and a helmet with visor or safety glasses.
Are cordless brush cutters as powerful as petrol brush cutters?
While electric brush cutters are getting better by the day, they don’t match up with the power that petrol models offer, but they come very close. The biggest limitation cordless brush cutters have is that the capacity of the battery limits their running time. Even the biggest batteries will require recharge after some time to keep going. However, I think this is a small price to pay for convenience and not have a loud motor blasting away behind you. Plus you don’t have the same maintenance to worry about.
Our Final Conclusion
Brush cutters are convenient to have around because they handle heavy duty strimming jobs very well. When you select the best cordless brush cutters, you can manoeuvre easily and get the job done without breaking a sweat.
You have seen models like our best pick; the Makita 36V DUR368AZ Brush Cutter, loaded with a wide cutting width and safety features to ensure you are not in harm’s way as you work. It supports variable speeds, and it is suitable for medium-large gardens.
Those who need a machine which is more affordable but still up to teh job, our Runner-up, the Greenworks Cordless Trimmer and Scythe 2-in-1 GD40BC. It offers two functions in one, and it is comfortable to work with despite its weight.
It might look stressful at first, but it doesn’t matter which model you choose as long as it suits your budget and gets the work done.
Last update on 2021-07-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API