Best Electric String Trimmers of 2022

·3 min read

Cordless battery string trimmers and corded options that cut as well as gas

By Paul Hope

If you love the appeal of lawn tools that start instantly and require minimal maintenance, you now have lots of options. More than ever, electric string trimmers—whether it’s a battery-powered string trimmer or a higher-performing corded model—are performing on par with gas, and in some cases, even better.

That’s great news because, as our tests on dozens of gas and electric string trimmers have shown, electric string trimmers (and all electric lawn tools) are far better for the Earth. They efficiently get your job done without spewing the outsized levels of carbon dioxide that gas models emit, and as a group they’re more reliable, so they’re less likely to end up in landfills.

“Electric trimmers really rival gas in cutting performance,” says Misha Kollontai, who oversees string trimmer testing for Consumer Reports. If you have a small yard with an outdoor outlet and want to save a little money, choose a corded model.

For larger yards, you might want to spend a bit more and invest in a cordless string trimmer, Kollontai says. Just make sure you have a second battery ready to go, if you’re clearing weeds and high grass for 30-plus minutes at a clip. (Otherwise, you might want to consider a gas string trimmer, typically reserved for larger properties where you might need to trim for longer stretches. If you’re unsure about which type to buy, start with our string trimmer buying guide.)

You can save money with cordless electric string trimmers by purchasing your lawn tools, such as a chainsaw and lawn blower, from the same brand, says Kollontai. This way, you don’t need to buy a battery with every tool. Simply purchase two (so you can use one while the other is charging) to power up your whole collection. That’s typically a 30 percent savings for each tool purchased without a battery.

How Consumer Reports Tests String Trimmers

We test all our string trimmers, whether it’s gas or electric, at a property in upstate New York, overrun with weeds, high grass, and dense brush. There, we note and time how long each model takes to clear a defined path. We also test each model at edging—it’s ability to create a neat and straight line along a walkway. And we look at how easy each model is to hold, maneuver, and operate, noting how difficult it is to start up or feed extra line through the cutting head.

We also assess the predicted reliability of string trimmers, by fuel source and brand, relying on insights from 31,374 CR members who told us about their experiences with string trimmers purchased between 2013 and 2019. Specifically, problem rates by the end of the fourth year of ownership inform our reliability rating, while owner satisfaction is determined by the percentage of members who say they are extremely likely to recommend their string trimmer to a friend or family member.

Here, CR members can find details on five of the best electric string trimmers from our tests. For ratings and reviews on more electric models as well as gas string trimmers, see our comprehensive ’s string trimmer ratings, where you can filter according to the criteria that best suits your needs, such as price, weight, and ease of use.

Best Electric String Trimmers: Corded

Best Electric String Trimmers: Battery (Cordless)

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