Table of Contents
- Why Electric Leaf Blowers?
- What to Consider When Choosing the Best Leaf Blower
- The best electric leaf blowers: our top picks
- Best Cordless Leaf Blower: Ego LB6504 Power+ 650 CFM
- Our experience after one year
- Best Corded Leaf Blower: Toro PowerJet F700
- Worx WG521 Turbine 800
- DeWalt 12-Amp Corded Leaf Blower
- Litheli 40V Cordless Leaf Blower
- Black + Decker 7-Amp Electric Leaf Blower
- Greenworks 40V Brushless Cordless Blower
- Ryobi 40-Volt Brushless Jet Fan Blower
- Final Thoughts: Corded or Battery-Operated?
Dealing with fallen leaves can be a headache. It’s no easy task to manually rake them off long driveways, and hauling out your gas-guzzling leaf blower is a noisy (and polluting) ordeal.
Thankfully, you have an alternative. Electric leaf blowers have come a long way in recent years, to the point that they favorably compare to gas models for most leaf removal tasks at the household scale.
However, determining which model of electric leaf blower best fits your needs can be a challenge. Would you be more limited by a blower tethered to an extension cord or one that maxes out at a 20-30 minute run time?
Why Electric Leaf Blowers?
Electric leaf blowers have a lot of appeal. Not only are they faster and less manually demanding than raking leaves by hand, but they have only a fraction of the environmental impact of gas-powered blowers.
Surprising as it sounds, small gas engines contribute more pollution than large ones like you find in cars. Most consumer-grade blowers have a two-stroke engine, meaning that the gas and oil are mixed. This creates a toxic cocktail of carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, and hydrocarbons, leading causes of greenhouse gasses, smog, and acid rain.
One 2011 study found that leaf blowers emit 300 times the air pollutants as a pickup truck used for the same timeframe. And unlike trucks, the blowers are built without any emissions filtering or capturing systems. In contrast, electric leaf blowers are lightweight, less noisy, and better for the environment, especially if you charge them off a renewable energy supply.
This pollution level is so inexcusable that California passed a ban on gas-powered lawnmowers and leaf blowers that will take effect by 2024. Other states are already following suit with leaf blower bans of their own.
So, while choosing an electric blower over gas is the ecologically conscientious option, it may soon become the only legal option, depending on where you live.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Leaf Blower
The energy source is just one consideration when choosing a leaf blower. Here are other factors that make a difference between models.
Size and Weight: What total weight would you be comfortable carrying around your blower? Small handheld models will range from three to 15 pounds (depending on the battery), while larger, backpack-style models may easily weigh 30 pounds or more. However, these heavier machines will contain straps to distribute the weight, meaning you might find them less cumbersome than handheld models.
Power: Leaf blowers are rated by the volume of air pushed through the unit, measured by cubic feet per minute (CFM). Most range from 200 to 800 cfm, with higher numbers implying more power to move leaves. Another useful measurement is the speed that air exits the blower, measured in miles per hour. Most will rate between 100 to 250 mph.
Run-time: Only relevant to battery-operated models, a blower’s run-time lets you know how long it will last between charges. Most range from 20 to 60 minutes, depending on the power mode.
Speed Settings: While basic leaf blowers offer only one operating speed, higher-end models have variable speed settings to allow you to control the rate of airflow. This helps you move heavy wet leaves and can ensure you aren’t blasting the same leaves around your yard repeatedly.
Noise: There’s no getting around it—leaf blowers are noisy. But, while gasoline-powered models can emit 90-102 decibels, electric blowers are noticeably quieter at under 75 decibels. This is something to consider if your municipality has a legal cap on decibel levels for residential leaf blowers (most are set at 65 or 70 decibels).
Price: Electric leaf blowers can range from $30 for basic models to over $700 for backpack styles. Expect additional batteries to add another third or more to the total cost.
Accessories: Some leaf blowers come with extra features like leaf vacuums or mulching attachments. These add all-in-one functionality to the blower for finishing up landscaping projects fast.
The best electric leaf blowers: our top picks
Highlights: Despite running off the battery, the Ego Power+ offers an impressive 90-minute run-time in regular mode, meaning one battery should be enough for most projects.
- Power: lithium-ion battery
- Weight: 12.9 lbs
- Air Volume: 225-500 cfm, turbo button reaches 650 cfm
- Air Speed: 180 mph
- Noise Rating: 65 dB
The Ego Power+ leaf blower packs a punch, even without a gas motor. It’s powered with a 56V ARC lithium battery that’s interchangeable between all Ego Power+ tools. Put it on its highest setting, and you’ll get up to 650 cfm for a blast powerful enough to move any leaves.
The blower boasts water-resistant construction and an ergonomic design, meaning you might not even notice the nearly 13 lb weight.
A highly efficient brushless motor ensures a long run time with low vibrations for hand comfort. You’ll get an impressive 90 minutes of run-time per battery charge on regular mode, though this shrinks to just 15 minutes on Turbo.
Keep it on low and 200 minutes is possible. If that’s still not long enough, spare batteries are about $250.
Our experience after one year
After a year of hands-on use, here’s what a member of our team, Taylor, has to say about his experience with the Ego leaf blower:
The edge of our property comes right up to a few acres of woods, so a leaf blower is a must for us. This is made worse by the fact that our yard seems to be a magnet for the neighborhood’s leaves as they’re blown around by the wind. Once leaves start falling, we can typically expect to spend about an hour or so outside cleaning them up two or three times a week just to keep things manageable.
Much like our other Ego products, this leaf blower has been amazing. The smaller battery that comes with it provides enough run time to handle our front and back yards without issue, and in the event that it’s not quite enough, we can easily swap in our other battery that came with our Ego mower. If you’re using the default power level (more than plenty for sidewalks, driveways, and short grass) the battery will last much longer, but liberal use of the turbo button (often necessary for larger piles, or longer yards where the leaves are a bit more tangled in the grass) can drain the battery faster.
With neighbors on both sides of us, having something that wasn’t obnoxiously loud was high on our priority list, and avoiding the need to keep around jugs of gasoline was ranked just a little above that. Thankfully, the Ego leaf blower checks both of these boxes. It is of course a leaf blower, so it’s not exactly quiet, but you won’t be alerting the entire neighborhood each time you use it like some of its gas-powered competitors.
Highlights: Lightweight, powerful, and impressively versatile, the Toro PowerJet is well-suited to most residential leaf removal tasks.
- Power: corded electric
- Weight: 6.6 lbs
- Air Volume: 725 cfm
- Air Speed: 140 mph
- Noise Level: 70 dB
Light and easy to handle, the Toro PowerJet is perfect for any small-scale leaf removal project—so long as you have access to an outlet. It’s powerful enough to move around damp, matted leaves at its highest settings, but the variable-speed control ensures you don’t need to keep it at full blast when working around delicate landscaping.
The entire unit is designed for one-handed use, and the long, slightly curved handle lets you easily adjust the angle of airflow to minimize wrist strain.
There’s a second pommel grip on the front of the handle to give you extra control at the highest power settings.
At about $65, you’ll be hard-pressed to find any leaf blower for less at this performance level. So long as you’re willing to work within the confines of your outdoor extension cord, this unit is hard to beat.
Highlights: This powerful corded leaf blower will run for hours, but you may find you fatigue faster due to the less-than-comfortable handle.
- Power: corded electric
- Weight: 6.6 lbs
- Air Volume: 800 cfm
- Air Speed: 135 mph
- Noise Level: 82 dB
The Worx Turbine 800 is a powerful leaf blower in a small package. It slightly beats out the Toro PowerJet in air volume but loses points for the higher price and being less comfortable to use.
This blower also includes a Hyper-Stream nozzle that lets you focus the wind tunnel in a targeted direction. Customer reviews indicate this setting works well for detail work, such as blowing water off tennis courts.
An included cord retainer will prevent extension cords from pulling out and leaving you without power in the middle of the action.
Like the Toro, this blower is lightweight and powered through an outlet. It offers variable-speed controls for a range of leaf removal projects.
But, since the handle is small and offers minimal grip options, you can expect to get a forearm workout in while using it.
Highlights: Built by a reputable brand, the DeWalt corded leaf blower is rated for contractor-grade performance, but its relatively high price and hefty weight might make it too cumbersome for the average user.
- Power: corded electric
- Weight: 9.9 lbs
- Air Volume: 409 cfm
- Air Speed: 189 mph
- Noise Level: 69 dB
This powerful corded electric leaf blower is built with quality materials, ensuring it should last for years to come. You’ll pay almost twice as much for this unit as its competitors on this list, but the extra money means you get a machine rated for contractor-grade performance without the hassle of a gas engine.
Expect to use it for long periods without overheating or other problems.
Extra features include multiple interchangeable nozzles, a cord retainer, and a trigger lock to give your fingers a break. The narrower the nozzle tube, the more concentrated and forceful the airflow.
Highlights: Ultra lightweight and reasonably priced, the Litheli is an excellent battery-operated lead blower that is limited only by a sub-30 minute run time.
- Power: cordless electric
- Weight: 5.7 lbs
- Air Volume: 350 cfm
- Air Speed: 92 mph
- Noise Level: 67 dB
For those with small to moderate-sized yards, the Litheli 40v is a budget-friendly battery-operated leaf blower to consider. It operates under variable speed to ensure you can control the amount of power needed for the job. But, as it comes in under six pounds with the battery, weight is where the Litheli really stands out.
It’s easy to carry around and use one-handed for as long as the battery will last—which tends to be well over thirty minutes.
While the blower averages between 45-76 mph at normal settings, the turbo mode gives a boost up to 92 mph. Customer reviews indicate it works well for clearing wet leaves and other debris across all surfaces, but the speed controls are tricky to handle one-handed.
Also included is a built-in metal scraper around the mouth of the blower tube that helps you remove pileups of wet leaves.
If you own other Litheli tools, you can swap this blower’s battery between them.
Highlights: Ideal for those who prefer no-frills power tools, this Black + Decker model will work reasonably well for small leaf removal projects.
- Power: corded electric
- Weight: 4.7 lbs
- Air Volume: 180 cfm
- Air Speed: 180 mph
- Noise Level: 86 dB
Simple and light, this Black & Decker blower will get the job done—so long as that job is small. This blower is far from powerful, but it’s well-suited for clearing walkways or a deck when the leaves are light.
Weighing under five pounds, it’s a blower almost anyone can handle.
While the blower comes with a 7-amp motor, it only operates under one speed setting. As with all corded electric models, you’ll gain the convenience of an unlimited run time at the cost of maneuverability.
Customer reviews share that the included cord is short, so you may want to invest in an extension cord.
Highlights: Powerful, reasonably lightweight, and long-lasting, this Greenworks leaf blower is a well-rounded machine for most projects at the residential scale.
- Power: cordless electric (40V 4Ah Lithium-ion battery)
- Weight: 5.6 lbs (9.8 with battery)
- Air Volume: 340 cfm
- Air Speed: 185 mph
- Noise Level: 71 dB
This Greenworks leaf blower provides power and quality in one machine. The brushless motor gives two times more torque than comparable blowers for extra power, quieter operation, and extended motor life. It comes with a variable speed dial with six settings, including a high-powered Turbo mode (note: the blower will run for up to 21 minutes at the highest setting).
You’re in luck if you’re a fan of the Greenworks brand, as this leaf blower’s battery is compatible with over 60 power tools in the product line. Even the battery’s 120-minute charge time from empty isn’t insurmountable for an afternoon of yard projects.
The blower also is well-suited to multitasking with an internal mulching function that breaks down yard debris like leaves, grass, and sticks for easier disposal. Just attach the included vacuum tube to the bottom of the machine.
Note that this blower’s tube is slightly narrower than other brands. This allows for a more focused airflow but a narrower working space, which tends to be best suited to detail work.
Highlights: This mid-tier battery-operated leaf blower won’t leave you wowed, but its ultra-quiet motor makes it a win for those with noise restrictions.
- Power: cordless electric, 40 V 4.0 ah lithium-ion battery
- Weight: 8.08 lbs
- Air Volume: 550 cfm
- Air Speed: 125 mph
- Noise Level: 59 dB
Ryobi offers a solid middle-of-the-pack leaf blower that won’t wow you with features but can consistently get the job done.While this cordless blower isn’t as powerful as the Ego LB6504, it offers an adjustable, more ergonomic handle and runs less loudly—no small matter if you live in a neighborhood. At just 59 dB at maximum power, it’s rated as the industry’s quietest handheld blower.
As with most blowers, it offers variable speeds and a Turbo mode for high-powered projects. Just note its estimated run-time is only a mediocre 18 minutes.
Those familiar with the Ryobi power tool family will love this blower’s adaptability between accessories. Note that the listed price is for the blower alone—the battery and charger will run you an additional $100-$150.
Final Thoughts: Corded or Battery-Operated?
Not all electric lawnmowers are built the same. One of the first purchasing decisions you need to make is whether to go cordless.
Corded electric leaf blowers tend to be lightweight and quieter than those with batteries or gas engines. They offer the convenience of steady power without worries about run-time, but you’re limited in use to where the extension cord can reach. This makes them best suited for clearing small yards and pathways near homes.
Battery-powered leaf blowers, in contrast, can be used anywhere. The tradeoff is that they weigh more, thanks to their battery, and typically only run for 20-30 minutes before needing a recharge. Some allow you to change out the battery with a fresh one, and each battery will often work for multiple products from the same brand, such as string trimmers, chainsaws, and more.
So, battery-operated leaf blowers tend to work best for small projects, spaces where you are out of range of outlets, and for those who have spare batteries on hand already. In contrast, corded blowers are best for larger projects and those who don’t want to haul a heavy machine around.