- Black & Decker 40V mowers are more affordable and suitable for small lawns with unpretentious grass
- Makita 36V cordless mowers offer better build quality, more height adjustments, and improved maneuverability for larger lawns
- Both brands offer cordless mowers with multiple waste management systems, including mulching, bagging, and rear discharge
A well-maintained lawn can draw attention to your property and increase your home’s resale value. However, if you don’t want to pay a professional to manicure it, you’ll have to invest in a good lawnmower. Dozens of residential mowers are available, with Black & Decker and Makita standing at the top of the list. Which is your best battery-powered machine? This head-to-head between the Black & Decker 40V mower vs. Makita 36V cordless mower might help you decide.
Black & Decker 40V Mower Vs. Makita 36V Cordless Mower: Side-by-Side Comparison
|Black & Decker 40V Mower||Makita 36V Cordless Mower|
|Best for||Yards up to ¼||Yards up to ¾ acres|
|Operation mode||Push||Push and self-propelled|
|Cutting width||16” to 20”||17” to 21”|
|Cutting height settings||6 to 7||10 to 13|
|Cutting heights||1.5” – 4”||0.8125” – 4”|
|Waste management||Bagging, side discharge||Mulching, bagging, rear discharge|
|Motor type||Brushless||Brushed or brushless|
|Battery||2 x 40V 2.0Ah||36V (2x18V, 5.0Ah or 2X18V, 4.0Ah)|
|Runtime||Up to 40 minutes||Up to 40 minutes|
|Price||$329.99 to $349.00||$349.00 to $769.06|
Black & Decker 40V Mower Vs. Makita 36V Cordless Mower: What’s the Difference?
Born in America, Black & Decker has become the staple of DIY enthusiasts. The company manufactures a variety of power tools, including landscaping and gardening equipment. Its lineup of cordless mowers comprises multiple variants, including the acclaimed 40V mower. While not the most durable mower, it costs a fraction of higher-end brands.
Makita is a Japanese brand initially developed for professionals but now includes residential-grade options. Its 36V cordless mowers feature residential and commercial models. While more expensive than Black & Decker, they deliver superior cutting performance. The larger decks also allow you to complete the chore faster. But are they worth the extra premium?
- Single-level cut height adjustment
- Foldable handle for compact storage
- Mulch, bag, or discharge modes
- Best for mowing lawns upto 1/4 an acre
- 3-year limited warranty
A lawn mower’s performance greatly determines whether it can quickly cut grass evenly. To achieve this, you must consider the blade type and match the cutting deck size to your lawn’s size.
In this aspect, Makita feels superior at first glance. Its mowers feature cutting decks between 18 and 22 inches, delivering cutting swaths from 17 to 21 inches. All mowers in Makita’s 36V lineup feature single-blade decks that use 3-in-1 blades developed for mulching, bagging, and discharging.
The blades have a forward tilt that prevents double cutting and improves runtime. At the same time, they promote lawn health by providing clean cuts. Alternatively, the brand sells replacement blades designed for specific waste management options. You have to drop some cash to get them, but using a specific blade for mulching or discharging can dramatically improve results.
Considering the cutting swaths, Makita mowers might not be suitable for all lawns. The wider decks suit lawns between ½ and ¾ acres and smaller lawns with no awkward shapes, narrow spaces, or obstacles. If you have a thin strip of grass as a yard or multiple obstacles on your property, the 16-inch Black & Decker mower might be best.
A primary advantage of this mower is a smaller cutting deck that easily fits into narrow spaces. A smaller deck is also easier to turn and maneuver around obstacles. Black & Decker’s EDGEGUARD technology also makes B&D mowers better for lawns with multiple obstacles.
Like Makita, the Black & Decker mower has multi-purpose blades that can cut grass for discharging, bagging, or mulching. Replacement blades are sold separately by the brand.
In addition to the cutting performance, another thing to check in a mower is the cutting height interval and the number of adjustments. These numbers can vary from mower to mower, but you should match them with the type of turf that you grow.
Black & Decker 40V mowers have cutting heights between one and a half to four inches. This interval suits most grass types, but you’re out of luck if you want to mow your warm-season grass shorter to increase the mowing interval.
Depending on the model, Makita’s cutting heights vary from just under one inch to four inches. No grass variety should be mowed lower than one inch during the growth season. However, having the possibility to cut it so short makes it easy to trim it down completely and prepare the terrain to sow another type of grass in the next season.
The Japanese mowers also feature more height adjustments, between 10 and 13, depending on the model. You can easily adjust the cutting height to the type of grass you have or the situation. Lawn professionals recommend you mow higher during the growing season and lower before the dormant period. Black & Decker also comes with multiple height adjustments, but they only vary from six to seven heights, depending on the model.
Power and Runtime
Cordless mowers promise gas-like power and sufficient runtime to mow the lawn on a single charge. For the most part, Black & Decker and Makita are true to their word, even though each goes differently.
Black & Decker 40V mowers promise 40 minutes of runtime. You do get that, but not from one battery. The brand sells mowers with two 40V batteries and a nominal voltage of 36 volts. With an energy charge of 2.0Ah, each delivers around 20 minutes of runtime in ideal conditions (dry grass that is not overgrown).
While you get 40 minutes of runtime, you’ll have to stop mid-way through the chore and swap batteries. The good news is that you can buy larger 40V Max batteries with an energy charge of 4.0Ah. These provide a longer runtime, but you’ll have to shell out more cash.
Makita 36V mowers are powered by two 18V batteries for a total nominal voltage of 36 volts – as a side note, remember that Makita is one of the few companies that advertise the nominal voltage of their batteries rather than the max voltage the tool outputs under no load.
Residential mowers come with 4.0Ah batteries, whereas commercial-grade ones have 5.0Ah batteries. These batteries provide 40 minutes of runtime without swapping them mid-way through the project. This is a big plus for the Japanese brand.
Makita sells some of its mowers in bundles with four batteries and dual chargers for extended runtime. These bundles are ideal for large lawns and those who want to save money on batteries.
- Variable speed setting of 1.5 to 3 MPH using a control on the handle
- 3-in-1 function that can mulch, bag, or discharge grass cuttings
- Commercial-grade steel deck with 21-inch cutting width
- Can mow up to 1/2 acre with four18V 5.0Ah batteries (included)
- Quiet Mode setting can reduce noise with constant speed at 2,300 RPM
Traditional lawnmowers were designed to cut the grass and leave the clippings behind. Today’s mowers are much more advanced. They allow you to discharge the clippings on the lawn, collect them in a bag for easier disposal, or shred them into turf fertilizer.
Both Black & Decker and Makita mowers offer all three waste management systems. Moreover, they use rear discharge systems rather than side discharge. Rear discharge is frowned upon because it’ll soil your shoes. However, it makes it easier to mow around flowerbeds, fences, driveways, and other obstacles you don’t want to cover in grass clippings.
As far as mulching goes, Makita is more powerful and can pulverize the grass blades. Black & Decker shreds them to a fine powder, but the result is typically coarser than Makita.
Addressing the average homeowner, Black & Decker’s residential line favors affordability over durability. The tools can hold up for years, but the components may fail and need replacement in time. This is true for the 40V mowers, too.
Both models are made of ABS plastic. The material resists wear and tear but can become brittle when left for long periods under the sun. If you don’t have a shed or indoor space for the mower, you should invest in a UV-resistant cover.
Entry-level Makita mowers also feature a plastic construction, although the material is sturdier than Black & Decker. The high-end residential and commercial lineup is partly made of plastic, but vital components, such as the cutting deck, are made of steel. These mowers are designed to last for decades.
A lighter mower is easier to push and turn, especially on sloped terrains. However, the machine should be heavy enough to provide consistent cutting. Makita perfectly balances these two factors in its push mowers, which weigh between 44.1 and 56.8 pounds, depending on size (17 to 21 inches).
The brand’s self-propelled mowers are heavier, but considering you only have to control the direction rather than push, they are much easier to maneuver than the push models.
Black & Decker’s lineup of 40V mowers comprises two push models. Their weights vary from 48.8 to 53.6 pounds, but considering the sizes are 16 and 20 inches, respectively, they are rather heavy. Fit people might have no trouble pushing them around the lawn. However, those with mobility issues might be better off with a Makita.
At the end of the day, price determines your choice of mower. Black & Decker wins this round, its mowers costing between $329.99 and $349.00. Makita’s 36V mowers have a better build quality, though, so the starting price of $349.00 is more than justified.
You’ll have to shell out around $770 for a commercial-grade, self-propelled mower. In the long run, however, this might be your best choice.
Black & Decker 40V Mower Vs. Makita 36V Cordless Mower: 6 Must-Known Facts
- Black & Decker’s 40V mower lineup comprises two models. One is a 16-inch mower ideal for smaller yards, while the other is a 20-inch unit.
- Makita’s 36V cordless mower lineup includes several mowers with deck sizes between 17 and 21 inches. The largest size is available in residential and commercial-grade construction.
- Both brands use same-voltage batteries. However, Black & Decker uses the maximum voltage (output under no load) to name its batteries, whereas Makita refers to the nominal voltage (output under a load).
- Black & Decker and Makita mowers have a runtime of 40 minutes. Due to the weaker batteries, B&D requires you to swap them mid-way through mowing. Otherwise, a single battery’s runtime is only 20 minutes.
- Makita uses a dual-battery system with two 18V batteries. Together, they provide up to 40 minutes of runtime with no swapping required. An additional battery set increases the runtime to 80 minutes.
- Black & Decker’s mowers are more affordable, but the ones from Makita boast a higher build quality and improved performance.
Black & Decker 40V Mower Vs. Makita 36V Cordless Mower: Which One Is Better? Which One Should You Use?
Finding the best mower is a matter of needs and budget. If you have a small lawn with unpretentious grass that you occasionally cut, a Black & Decker 40V mower might be your best bet. For a larger lawn, stubborn grass, or frequent mowing, a Makita 36V cordless mower is a better choice. For a slightly higher price, you get better build quality, more height adjustments, long-lasting blades, and a lower weight for improved maneuverability.
Makita is also the best choice for those who need a mower for a summer side gig. In this case, the commercial option may cost you more upfront but will pay off in the long run.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Vladimir Shulikovskiy/Shutterstock.com.