Great - not so Great
I bought this mower a few months ago and have had a chance to use it on grass and in leaves (mostly maple. I so wanted to give this a 5 star review for the great things I like about it. But, before buying this, I did read all of the reviews and, unfortunately, I am finding the same limitations others found (poor run time, an unacceptable charger). I have a small city lot and a pretty sizable collection of other Dewalt 20v tools/batteries and chargers to supplement that which was provided with the mower. So, for me, this means these limitation are of a marginal concern. Overall, I am pleased with the mower and the run time on the 2 - 5 amp-hr batteries is sufficient to mow my lawn on a single charge (about a half hour), but is insufficient if I am dealing with fall leaves. And, I find that packaging this mower with only the single slot slow charger to be unacceptable, especially considering that Dewalt has a 2 fast chargers that could have been packaged with it. Hence, a large part of my 3 star rating.
Here’s what I have found to date:
Pros: The mower, other than the noted limitations, is basically well thought out, well designed, and built to the high end level I expect from Dewalt. It has nice features such as an easy to fold handle that doubles as part of the support for storing it on-end and the single lever height adjustment, which I use multiple times while mowing. The housing and handle are metal and quite substantial. Use of plastic seems to be appropriately done. I have not found places where I would wish they hadn’t used plastic. The section of the height adjustment mechanism for the front wheels includes a spring that allows for front wheel movement which absorb some of the shock of pushing the mower over my rough lawn. The housing and blade design does well at mulching and, with the bag attached, does well at picking up leaves, cutting them up and stuffing them in the bag. It does well at fully filling the bag, which is good as the bag is a bit on the small size. The mower weight is reasonable given its quite substantial metal housing. Its wheels are sufficiently large to all it to easily roll over my lawn (they are larger than those on my gas mower). The motor power, when fully up to speed, is good and sufficient enough to handle cutting up and bagging the maple leaves covering my back lawn. However, note that the mower has very little starting torque and it struggles to get going if there is cut grass and/or leaves in the housing and around the blade. The 20” cut path is nice and better than some other brands. No gas, oil or cords to deal with and, of course, the batteries are usable in other Dewalt cordless tools, if you have them.
Cons: The charger. Dewalt included their 2 amp slow charger (DCB112) for charging 2 - 5 amp-hr batteries. That is 5 hrs of charging, or more if you can’t catch the first battery right at the end of its charge cycle. With 2 batteries it is not even possible to charge these overnight and have them ready to go the next day. I find this to be unacceptable, especially considering that Dewalt has 2 other fast chargers that could have been included (DCB115, single slot [not really desirable either], or DCB102, 2 slot). Even on my small lawn the run time with the 2 - 5 amp-hr batteries is marginal. The location of the cord from the end of the handle to the motor is such that it gets pinched in lower hinge of the handle. That pinch point is scissor-like and, eventually, is going to cut the cord. The rear discharge option is useless in all but dry grass as it easily clogs.
Observations: While I really like the single handle height adjustment, the lever for this can easily get caught on bushes or the like, and change settings. Sharpen the blade, which is not very sharp out of the box, and keep it sharp. This will improve run time a bit, along with mulching and cutting up leaves. The safety handle is very sensitive to how it is held. I have had the motor trip off at times when I thought I had a good grip on it. 2 hands work the best.
Conclusion: This mower suits my needs; my “Pros” are what I like about it and there is not much for me not to like. I would recommend it, but with the reservation that the person be someone with other Dewalt cordless tools, and has only a small lawn.
For Dewalt: This could easily be a 4 or 5 star mower but for the charger and run time. This mower commands a premium price against other brands. For that premium price, you have the charger on the shelf that should be included; that is the 2 slot DCB102 high speed charger. As for run time, that could be addressed by offering a trade-in option of the 2 - 5 amp-hr batteries for a heavily discounted priced pair of 9 amp-hr or larger batteries or package the mower with different battery options. Finally, the cord needs to be re-routed so it is not pinched by the handle.