Sunday, March 29, 2015

Ryobi versus Kobalt versus AC power

I don't like small gas engines. I do have a 4 cycle gas powered pole saw and keep it and the gas in a metal shed.

I bought the Ryobi 24v string trimmer to manage the blackberries down by the lake, (I know, I know you have to pull them out and get their roots). Its battery quit accepting a charge the second year. I went to Amazon and ordered two new batteries and they sent me 2 18v. This is when I learned about Amazon's return policy when you buy something from an Amazon merchant instead of Amazon itself. Now I am stuck with two Homelite 18v batteries. Last year I bought a Ryobi 18v string trimmer to go with my batteries and it works for light duty applications. This year, the Ryobi factory battery quit accepting a charge, (in both cases about a month after the warranty expired).

Lowes carries a proprietary brand of tools, called Kobalt. I decided to give them a try. I bought the leaf blower, string trimmer and hedge trimmer. They all use the same battery and icing on the cake, they were running a promotion where you got an extra battery if you bought a tool.

Yesterday was a church work day at Lake Tapps Community Church so I piled everything in the truck. The Kobalt string trimmer seriously outperformed Ryobi. The Kobalt hedge trimmer runs a little slower than my AC powered on, but cuts quite well. The leaf blower is a bit heavier than my AC blower and doesn't blow as hard, but not having a cord, means small jobs are much easier, no setup time with the cord. I will set a google calendar to come back in 13 months and update this post, but the batteries and tools appear to have warranties.

I bought the tools from the Lowe's in Bonney Lake WA. Everybody was incredibly friendly. They did not have the Kobalt Pole Saw, but one lady took my name and number and said she would research it. Who knows, this may be like the time I tried to buy a factory new Ford Interceptor :), (even with someone from the office of the President at Ford trying to help me, no go). Or, it might work and I can get rid of that last small gas engine.

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