Best Cordless Leaf Vacuum to Buy in 2020 (Complete Review)
Battery-powered leaf vacuums are becoming competitively popular compared to corded models that currently lead the market niche. The rise of cordless outdoor equipment is due to the rapid development and cheapening of lithium-ion batteries.
Based on my in-depth expertise, I can conclude that this power source usually provides a good performance-work time ratio. In addition, battery-powered devices are much more mobile than corded machines.
In this article, I want to provide you with a comprehensive guide that will help decide whether you need a cordless leaf vacuum or not. In addition, I included 7 test-based cordless leaf vacuum reviews. Using this information, you’ll be able to make a considered decision.
Top 6 Best Cordless Leaf Vacuums
Below are the most reliable and convenient battery-powered leaf vacuums that I’ve picked from 13 models from the list of top rated cordless leaf vacuum mulcher models that I could test. In my reviews, I provide comprehensive info about each machine and offer useful tips to let you understand what you need.back to menu ↑
1. Greenworks 40V Cordless Leaf Blower/Vacuum – Top Electric Leaf Blower and Vacuum
Greenworks is a trustworthy US-based manufacturer that entered the market just 13 years ago. Nevertheless, the brand’s lithium-ion batteries and assembly quality have brought it to the list of best-selling battery-powered power tools in the US and worldwide. The company offers excellent customer support services, a 4-year tool warranty, and a 2-year battery warranty. This aspect justifies the relatively high price for this leaf blower/vacuum.
The 40V version of the tool offers an optimal power/size ratio. The 40V battery provides from 20 to 60 minutes of run time, depending on the speed mode you switch. You can toggle between 6 blowing speeds to blow leaves from between delicate plants without damaging them.
The highest blowing speed (185MPH) can lift even heavy wet piles and relocate them anywhere you need. The suction power is 340CFM, which is also enough for vacuuming both dry and wet leaves. You can set the needed speed, and mulch leaves with a 16:1 ratio, which means that the leaf mulcher can make an average leaf pile 16 times smaller.
This tool is an excellent solution for yards with a medium number of trees, but you can upgrade it by purchasing extra batteries. My experience shows that the average run-time is 35-40 minutes if I change speeds from time to time. That can be not enough for large yards, so it’s important to have at least 1 extra battery to keep working when the second is charging.
- up to 60 minutes of run-time;
- six-speed modes;
- up to 185MPH / 340CMF;
- charging time – 120 minutes;
- 16:1 mulching ratio.
- you may need an extra battery for a large yard.
2. ENERTWIST – Best Compact Cordless Leaf Vacuum Mulcher
Sometimes a compact device is the best solution. This cordless leaf blower/vacuum by Enertwist is equipped with a 20V motor powered by a 2Ah battery, and the whole thing weighs just 3.5lbs. It can produce up to 88CFM air velocity, which is enough for removing dry leaves from small yards.
The tool cannot mulch leaves as it’s only a vacuum, so I cannot recommend it for mulching leaf piles. On the other hand, the compact construction makes it a bit more versatile and applicable for a variety of tasks around the household.
Due to the battery charge indicator, you can see how much run-time you have to finish your work. Usually, one charge is enough to blow leaves for 25-30 minutes or suck them in until the bag gets full 2-3 times. It lacks the mulching feature, but you’re not likely to miss it if you have a small yard.
- one-year warranty (90-day money-back);
- extremely compact and lightweight (3.5lbs);
- run-time up to 30 minutes;
- fast charge support (50 minutes to full);
- battery life display.
- only for small yards;
- no mulching feature.
3. BLACK+DECKER LSWV36 – Best Lightweight Cordless Leaf Vacuum With Bag
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BLACK+DECKER is another American manufacturer of outdoor equipment. It was founded in 1910. Today it takes leading positions in the industry with 16 subsidiary companies, including the famous American power tool manufacturer, DeWALT.
The LSWV36 blower-vacuum is equipped with a 40V battery that powers a lightweight engine. The top airflow speed is 120MPH, which is usually enough for removing average dry and wet piles. There’s no jet mode, so don’t wait until the piles get too big and wet. On the other hand, the device is excellent for delicate blowing and vacuuming, as you can switch between 6 speeds. The mulching rate is also quite low and reduces the size of one pile 6 times.
The tool doesn’t combine blower and vacuum nozzles, so you have to replace them manually. Fortunately, it takes less than a minute due to convenient plastic locks. The benefit of such a design is weight. The tool with a blower nozzle weighs only 5.2lbs and only 6.9lbs with a vacuuming nozzle and mulch bag.
This tool is not for heavy-duty tasks and yards with dozens of large trees. At the same time, it’s a perfect solution for small and medium yards where leaf piles are not too big. It’s also a joy to use if you don’t like or not allowed to carry heavy tools. If you are looking for extra power, take a look at other reviews. If this one seems enough, you will be pleased by its simplicity.
- one of the lightest designs;
- easy-to-change nozzles;
- excellent for small and medium yards;
- sturdy plastic shafts;
- charges is 60 minutes.
- not for heavy-duty tasks.
4. RYOBI 40-Volt VacAttack – Best 2-in-1 Battery Operated Leaf Vacuum Mulcher
RYOBI is a leading Japanese manufacturer of electronics and outdoor power equipment since 1943. VacAttack 2-in-1 is a powerful leaf vacuum/mulcher that doesn’t have a blower mode. It’s quite cumbersome compared to other devices on my listing, but such a design is justified by its capabilities.
The 12AMP motor is powered by a 40V battery. With an average airflow speed of 340CFM, the run time of the machine is usually around 45-55 minutes, depending on the number and weight of leaves. The mulching ratio is very high and easily turns 16 leaf piles into 1.
Due to the large bag, you can mulch loads of leaves until it gets full. I tested the tool on 2 medium yards with a large number of fallen leaves, and it took me around 40 minutes to clear each of them. In both cases, the bag remained 1/4-empty.
The ergonomics of this tool are arguable. It’s an effective machine, but its design wouldn’t be comfortable for everyone. The extended vacuum shaft is quite heavy. The manufacturer included wheels so that you can push the tool forward easier. However, the length of the nozzle and the size of the wheels aren’t universal. Tall users like me cannot benefit from this feature as it’s much easier to hold the device above the ground than push it forward on the wheels.
I recommend RYOBI VacAttack for cleaning yards with many trees and mostly grassy or solid areas as there’s no blower mode and low speeds for vacuuming between delicate plants. The heavy-duty impeller guarantees longevity, while the 5-year warranty protects you from unexpected consequences.
- 5-year warranty;
- metal impeller;
- 16:1 mulching ratio;
- large bag.
- battery isn’t included;
- quite cumbersome.
5. Sun Joe iONBV 40-Volt – Best VacAttack Alternative
If you need a heavy-duty vacuum-like RYOBI VacAttack, but a blower function is necessary, Sun Joe iONBV is an excellent option. This 3-in-1 device is equipped with a powerful engine with 6 variable speed modes so that you can easily vacuum and blow between delicate flowers and other plants.
The top airflow speed is 200MPH, which is more than enough for relocating large piles of wet leaves. A sturdy metal impeller provides superior mulching power, and shreds leave making them 17 times smaller.
Similar to VacAttack, iONBV comes with an extended vacuum nozzle, but it’s not that heavy. The weight of an empty tool is 8.7lbs, so it’s easy to carry in one hand. Of course, the bag gets heavy quite quickly. You can attach wheels to enlighten it a bit.
To convert the tool to the blower mode, you simply have to replace the nozzle. It’s easy to detach it with a push of a button and put it back without tools. You can also purchase extra nozzles for cleaning the gutters.
Due to the large diameter of the mulching section, the tool cloggs quite rarely, and it’s easy to clear it if necessary. The average run-time of the tool with a 4.0AMP battery fluctuates from 20 to 60 minutes, depending on speed adjustment. For some reason, the 3rd position drains the battery faster than the 4rth, so you should balance.
- 2-year warranty;
- lightweight construction;
- 17:1 mulching ratio;
- big 16-gallon mulch bag;
- easy to convert.
- requires a backup battery.
6. KIMO 20V Cordless Leaf Vacuum/Blower – Powerful Compact Solution
Here is one more ultra-compact leaf blower/vacuum. Compared to the device by Enertwist, it has a longer nozzle, so there’s no need to bend. It also comes with a more capacious battery that extends run time up to 60 minutes despite high blowing power (up to 150MPH).
The speed is variable so that you can work without damaging plants. Due to a step-less speed controller, you can choose any RPM (0-22000) that you need. It’s also one of the quietest tools on my listing.
The tool weighs only 2.2lbs, which makes it the lightest item here. At the same time, it’s powerful enough to blow through wet leaf piles. That’s something the Enertwist blower cannot do effectively. KIMO offers an excellent small-yard solution for quick and effective clearing. It’s powerful enough even for wet leaves and you won’t get tired while carrying it.
- weighs just 2.2lbs;
- up to 150MPH blow and vacuum speed;
- variable speed;
- 4Ah battery for longer run time;
- compact design.
- no mulching option;
- the bag is quite small.
Know The Difference
There are 3 types of leaf vacuums on the market today and they all have pros and cons. I think you should learn the facts to decide which type is the best for your needs. Don’t be in a hurry. You need the best result for your money!back to menu ↑
Gas-powered leaf vacuums are usually considered the most convenient as they can work long and have powerful engines. To my mind, the number of disadvantages outweighs. These machines are really noisy and pollute the environment with emissions.
Besides, you need to deal with complex maintenance chores and be ready to carry a heavier tool. The use of these machines can be justified only in rare cases.back to menu ↑
Corded electric blower vacuums are the most popular due to their low average price and unlimited work sessions. You don’t have to recharge the tool at all, so there’s no need to stop until the bag gets full of mulched leaves. This type is also the lightest. The downside is that you have to buy an extension cord to enhance your mobility. The longer it is, the better.back to menu ↑
Cordless electric leaf vacuums offer the same mobility as gas-powered blowers. Modern lithium-ion batteries provide great performance and usually work up to 60 minutes on a single charge. These devices don’t pollute the air at all and require very little maintenance.
Cordless Leaf Blower Vacuum Benefits
Battery-powered leaf blower vacuums offer combined capabilities of a leaf blower and vacuum mulcher. These devices are much more versatile than average blowers as they let you remove fallen leaves from your lawn without raking and bending all the time. The tool simply sucks them in and mulches to reduce the volume of the pile for up to 18 times.back to menu ↑
Here is a brief list of things to consider before purchasing a leaf vacuum. All models have particular characteristics to match the needs of different users, so it’s important to get the one that won’t overwhelm or slow you down. Here are the main aspects:
- Weight and portability – make sure that you are strong enough to carry the tool around for over or two. It also should be portable enough for storing;
- Suction power – I recommend purchasing tools that can suck in both dry and wet leaves. The suction power is measured in CFM (cubic feet per minute). The higher it is, the better;
- Mulching ratio – most leaf vacuums mulch leaves so that you can use them as compost;
- Bag size – I like using the largest bags available, but you should consider your strength and comfort first and foremost. Your back shouldn’t be overloaded;
- Price – the highest price doesn’t necessarily mean that you get the best tool. Evaluate characteristics and reviews first;
- Manufacturer – cheap devices from China can be really good, but the manufacturer in the US rarely supports them. It means that you won’t be serviced if something goes wrong;
- Noise level – electronic devices produce significantly fewer noise emissions than gas-powered machines. Consider this if you don’t want to disturb your neighbors.
Still have questions? Here are the answers to the most probable of them. Read them through to make sure you know everything about leaf vacuums. And don’t forget that you can ask more in the comments section anytime.back to menu ↑
How do you сonvert from blower to vacuum?
There are 2 types of machines. The first one comes with 2 preinstalled nozzles for the blower and vacuum so that you can switch between them by toggling a lever. The second type (the majority of devices) requires manual nozzle replacement. It takes a bit more time but usually doesn’t require any tools.back to menu ↑
Which is better battery-powered or gas leaf vacuums?
Gas leaf vacuums are usually more powerful, but new electric models have similar characteristics and mulching power. Although battery-powered models may have the same power, they cannot work as long as gas vacuums per charge. That’s the reason to purchase an emergency battery pack to work uninterruptedly.
The disadvantages of gas-powered machines include maintenance complexity and emissions. Use such machines only if you don’t have access to electricity in the area. In other cases, battery-operated devices can solve any problem.back to menu ↑
Can I use a leaf vacuum on gravel?
I don’t recommend using a vacuum on gravel as even the smallest rocks can destroy the impeller. If the impeller is plastic, it will be damaged for sure. Metal parts will lose sharpness or get bent. Use the blower mode to relocate leaves to a flat and clean surface or to the grass and vacuum them safely.back to menu ↑
Using a wireless leaf vacuum, you can be mobile and remove leaves from all the hard-to-reach places on your land. Additional mulching capabilities will supply you with high-quality mulch for compost and reduce rubbish amount for up to 18 times! If you need more info about corded models, you will find it on my blog too, so stay tuned.
Have you ever used leaf vacuums before? Which types did you have, and which one’s your favorite? If you know valuable facts about devices from my listing, you’re welcome to share them in the comments section. It’s also a good opportunity to ask me extra questions on the topic. Let’s chat!