Milwaukee leaf blower - not so good

Since it’s gutter cleaning season I needed a good and reliable leaf blower. I have two 2-stroke older blowers which are fairly unreliable. I was going to get an Echo or Husky blower since I have first hand experience with Stihl 2 stroke gadgets and they are all a pain to start.

The potential benefits of a battery powered blower is very high. No starting issues, no gas mixing, no blowers leaking gas in my rig, etc. So, I got a new Milwaukee brushless blower and I have two of the big XC 5.0 batteries. First attempt was in 45 degree weather with a freshly charged battery. These blowers have a normal mode which is pretty darn light duty. They also have a super turbo type mode and WOW, it’s awesome. I suspect the turbo mode is at the 450-500cfm range. It’s impressive. BUT…I am only getting about 6-8 minutes of use at that high speed. New battery and same results. It will chew through batteries like crazy. I had a last minute patio cleaning today and with 34 degrees in the air I think I got 4-5 minutes.

Perhaps the cold has a really bad effect on the batteries, which most batteries do but dang, at $100 per battery I am ready to switch to a gas model. I do keep the batteries in a cooler to keep them warm, so they are no out in my trailer.

Anyone have experience with this or other battery powered blowers? Are you getting better run times with a decent amount of CFMs?

5ah isn’t very big, what amp draw is it on high speed?

Just think, Kalifornia is mandating everything under 25hp be electric in a couple years.

Both 18v and 5ah is homeowner grade stuff. You either need that 9 or 12 ah battery, or just go buy a brand that has higher voltage like 56v. Blowers use a lot of power, that’s going to be a tough one for cali in the future. My 20v dewalt trimmer and my ryobi edger barely use up any of my 5ah batteries, but my blower kills it in minutes like you’re seeing.

Save the environment and get a gas stihl hand held blower.


I agree. Buy a Stihl and carry a two gallon gas can. Problem solved. I’ve never had issues starting Stihl equipment that wasn’t abused or poorly maintained. The only times I had issues was when others had used cheap ethanol gas, not mixed correctly and fouled the plug or spark arrestor. Use fresh 91 no ethanol, mix appropriately, keep air filter clean, keep a spare spark plug and you should still have that Stihl in 20 years.

My dad had a stihl and it ran great. Took a bit of love to start sometimes but that’s because it got run over by a skidsteer twice.

I bought one for myself and it’s gold

Stihl or Echo, plan to spend $150-175 and you’ll be good to go. Battery technology isn’t there yet for blowers - well, they have the backpacks that are mega-batteries/multiple batteries that plug into the handheld blower, but that defeats the benefits of a lightweight blower and you keeping a lower center of gravity on a roof. Give it a few more years, but for now, blowers need gas. I just buy the Tru-Fuel 50:1 cans and they last me a while in my Echo equipment.

usable electric blowers will never be a thing for many years in a professional environment if ever, there’s a balance of weight, run time, and CFM to take into account none of which is there with electric currently no matter how much you’ve got planned for the day. 2strokes are the way to go.

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My dad has the Milwaukee blower and with the 12Ah battery does a good job in his court yard. I am running an echo blower 255ln for the last 4 years with zero troubles and it has a hard life with me. I belive is time for a tune up. We use blowers all the time on roofs and gutters. Lots of pine trees and oak here in Florida.

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I have both a Milwaukee 18v and a Stihl 2 cycle. Both have their place but you can never go wrong with a Stihl. As mentioned, a 5ah battery is just too small for a blower of that size. I have a 12ah and it can darn near hold up to the Stihl. Just not for as long. I love the Milwaukee for a quick driveway, deck, or gutter clean out but, if I need to use a blower for longer than 20-30 minutes I grab the Stihl. I love how light the Milwaukee is but it’s not enough to make a huge difference. It’s super convenient tho. If you’re going to keep using the 18v upgrade batteries. I can’t imagine living in a state like CA who’s outlawing small engines. There’s no way the current battery powered blowers will get the job done. You’d have to buy a ton of batteries to get through the day. All of these electrics cause more more issues with the environment than gas because of all the charging they need. That just means more coal burning in the power plants.

Battery powered stuff is already 10x better than it was just a few years ago. I got rid of all my gas powered lawn stuff except my mower. I don’t miss mixing gas, cleaning carbs, changing plugs, etc. No maintenance is really nice. As soon as they have an electric push mower that’s closer to 30” I’ll have one.

Dewalt has a new power stack battery coming out next month. For now, it’s only available in the small 2ah, but I’d imagine by next year they will have larger ones. It’s more powerful, longer lasting and more compact and light. Especially with what California is doing, these manufactures are going to get battery technology up to where it needs to be to run larger equipment quickly.

Face it old timers, times are changing and changing fast! We have electric cars that run 9 second ¼ miles, trucks that can do 0-60 in 3 seconds, and now have cars that gets over 500 miles on a charge. Purdue and Ford developed a new charging cable that can recharge in a car in 5 minutes. It may be a slow death, but gas is dying, just roll with it :grin:

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Thanks as always guys! Solid advice. I just wrongly assumed a pair of 5amp batteries would do well. I will pick up an Echo or Stihl as you guys have suggested. Thanks again and Happy Thanksgiving!

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Echo sucks, especially if you are right handed

Hmmm, I am a righty so that is interesting. Never heard that before.

Stihl shop vacs and shed-n-vacs suck too. :wink:

Intake on echo is on left side, so if you are right handed it sucks on your pants leg

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At least they were when I tried them 15 years ago or so

You are right.

If your leaf blower is anything like mine, it sits in the garage for 10 months at a time without getting started. The old gas will eventually turn to goo in the carb. I’ve recently started using StaBil Storage which is supposed to keep fuel fresh for up to 2 years. It’s very highly rated so it must work well.

I’ve got about a dozen stihls but we quit gutters about a year ago so they just kinda sit on the shelf.

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