Notes & Assumptions: Life-cycle Cost Analysis for GAS/DIESEL Lawn Mowers vs. ELECTRIC High Performance Lawn Mowers
General: To generate a life-cycle cost comparison for a specific application/mower, the data can either be inputted into the Excel spreadsheet at https://www.ecoequipmentsupply.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/EES-Lifecycle-Analysis_06-18-20.xlsx, or e-mailed to EES and we’ll input the data and send you the completed spreadsheet and graph.
High-performance lawn mowers are deemed as those with engines having power ratings between 10 and 36 horsepower (hp). These mowers typically have mowing decks between 30 inches and 60 inches wide, and include zero-turn, walk-behind, and stand-on models.
Utility Incentive Payment: 16 of Vermont’s 17 electric utilities are currently offering incentives for Mean Green commercial electric lawn mowers. These incentives are $1,000 (Vermont Electric Co-op, Washington Electric Co-op, and the 12 member VT Public Power Supply Authority), $2,500 (Green Mt Power) and $3,500 (Burlington Electric Department).
Factory Incentive: The Mean Green factory is offering an additional $300 discount in conjunction with any utility incentive.
Annual Operating Hours: 6 hours/day for 5 days per week, for 23 weeks per year.
Average Annual Maintenance Costs
- Blade Sharpening and Replacement: This analysis assumes the blade sharpening is done “in-house” every 50 hours at an average cost of $25 per sharpening – including blade replacement every 300 hours.
- Oil Changes and Lubrication: This analysis also assumes oil changes and lubrication are done “in-house”, but at 100-hour intervals at a cost of $75 per oil change/lubrication.
- Blade Sharpening and Replacement: Same as gas/diesel mower.
- Oil Changes and Lubrication: Electric mowers do not require oil changes and require minimal lubrication.
Average Annual Repair Costs:
Analysis assumes a new gas/diesel mower will have a 3-year warranty and this analysis assumes that the gas/diesel mower will be kept for one year beyond a 3-year warranty period and repair costs will be $400 during the fourth year. Since this analysis covers an 8-year period, two mowers will be purchased with total repair costs of $800. However, if a gas/diesel mower is kept for the full 8 years, these repair costs could be at least $2,400 to $4,000.
Analysis assumes the electric mower will also have a 3-year warranty. But, Mean Green electric mowers can easily be kept for 8 years because the wheel and blade motors and batteries are designed for thousands of hours of use and cost very little to repair or replace if they are damaged or prematurely fail. Therefore, this analysis assumes that during the 5 years beyond the 3-year warranty period, a total of $800 will be spent on repairs.
Fuel and Electricity Consumption and Costs: Analysis assumes a conservative average consumption level of 1 gal/hr at an average cost of $2.50/gal. The Mean Green CXR-52/60 electric mower consumes an average of 2.8 kW/hr of electricity at an average cost $0.16/kWh (Vermont rates 2017).
As described above, because gas/diesel mowers have so many moving parts and become relatively expensive to repair, they also depreciate relatively quickly. Therefore, this analysis assumes two gas/diesel mowers will be purchased over 8 years and they’ll depreciate 20% per year. The residual value each of the 2 mowers after 8 years of depreciation is subtracted from their total operating costs to obtain the 8-year life-cycle costs.
This analysis assumes the electric mower will be kept for eight years and will depreciate an average of 10% per year, or 80% over eight years. Again, the residual value of the one electric mower after 8 years of depreciation is subtracted from its total operating costs to obtain the life-cycle cost over the full 8 years.