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BLACK+DECKER CM2043 Review

A low-cost mower with a shorter runtime and limited cutting power
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Price:   $300 List | $299 at Amazon
Pros:  Maneuverable, broad cutting range, well designed bail
Cons:  Short runtime, limited cutting power, not self-propelled
Manufacturer:   Black+Decker
By Nick Miley and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Oct 1, 2019
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53
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 9
  • mowing - 35% 5
  • battery - 25% 4
  • handling - 25% 7
  • ease of use - 15% 5

Our Verdict

While the BLACK+DECKER CM2043 is quite maneuverable and it has a broad range of cutting heights, it lacks the power and battery life that would otherwise make this affordable mower a worthwhile purchase. Additionally, this machine lacks self-propulsion and a number of other ease of use and handling features.


Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Top Pick Award  
Price $300 List
$299.00 at Amazon
$500 List
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$400 List$450 List
$441.01 at Amazon
$600 List
$599.00 at Amazon
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Pros Maneuverable, broad cutting range, well designed bailExtensive runtime, rapid recharge, massive cutting deck widthGreat handling, good at edging, broad cutting deckFantastic folding mechanism, long-lasting battery, rapid recharge timeFast recharge, fairly quiet, easy battery removal
Cons Short runtime, limited cutting power, not self-propelledFairly expensive, more mower than some may needLimited runtime, prolonged rechargingLacks self-propulsion, below average cutting deck width, stiff bailLackluster maneuverability, expensive, limited runtime
Bottom Line A low-cost mower with a shorter runtime and limited cutting powerThis do-it-all mower eats up turf like Popeye eats spinachAn inexpensive mower that delivers above average performance in every category except battery lifeAn easy to use mower that is great for newbies but will satisfy old hands as wellThis mower offers few features to rationalize its steep price tag
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Rating Categories BLACK+DECKER CM2043 EGO LM2102SP Ryobi RY40190-Y Worx WG774 Snapper...
Mowing (35%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
7
Battery (25%)
10
0
4
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
6
Handling (25%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
5
10
0
4
Ease Of Use (15%)
10
0
5
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
7
Specs BLACK+DECKER CM2043 EGO LM2102SP Ryobi RY40190-Y Worx WG774 Snapper...
power 3 7 7 5 7
estimated cutting area (square feet) 6,457 ft² 14,275 ft² 7,031 ft² 12,302 ft² 4,382 ft²
measured recharge time 300 mins 57 mins 250 mins 105 mins 30 mins
folding/ unfolding ease 5 9 7 10 7
measured noise 74.5 dBA 71 dBA 71 dBA 72.4 dBA 72 dBA
measured cutting gap (inches) 1 1/2 in. 3/4 1/2 in. 3/4 in. 15/16 in.
measured cutting deck width (inches) 15 5/16 in. 18 1/8 in. 17 in. 15 1/4 in. 17 5/8 in.

Our Analysis and Test Results

Our testing revealed that the BLACK+DECKER CM2043 lacks the power to efficiently mulch the turf it cuts and that tall grass will stop this machine in its tracks. This meager mower also lacks sufficient battery life to run for more than 20 minutes. Making matters worse, the batteries require 5 hours to recharge. Finally, the mower lacks in many ease of use features.

The BLACK+DECKER struggles in tall grass and is best kept on well-maintained lawns
The BLACK+DECKER struggles in tall grass and is best kept on well-maintained lawns

Performance Comparison



Likes


This machine offers little in the way of praise-worthy features. However, it can be said that this mower has a broad cutting range that covers 1 3/8" - 3 3/4" over seven settings. The BLACK+DECKER is also maneuverable. This benefit is in large part due to its lack of self-propulsion, which allows the wheels to roll freely around tight corners. It also has a well-designed bail that is easy and comfortable to grip. Finally, this mower is inexpensive.


Dislikes


While we don't want to unduly malign any product, it is our duty to point out what we consider to be shortfalls in the design of products that we review. First off, the BLACK+DECKER has a very short runtime, and as a consequence, it is only capable of mowing an estimated 6,456 square feet of turf. When the batteries run out of charge, it takes an epic 5 hours to recharge them. This model lacks self-propulsion as well, a fact that makes the lack of a reasonable runtime all the more pronounced.


Due to its general lack of power, the BLACK+DECKER struggles a good deal in cutting all but the least demanding grasses. Mulching will cause the motor to labor, and cutting tall grass will stop it in its tracks. Also, at 1 1/2", this model has a huge cutting gap. The cutting gap is the main contributor to leaving uncut turf when cutting along a wall or other barrier.

The BLACK+DECKER in its element -- flat ground with well-maintained turf
The BLACK+DECKER in its element -- flat ground with well-maintained turf

Value


Essentially, value is an assessment of a product's performance to cost ratio. What this means is that if a product outperforms its peers while costing the same amount of money it has greater value. Similarly, if a product performs like its peers, but cost much less, then it has a greater value as well. Despite the low cost of the BLACK+DECKER, its numerous shortcomings outweigh this benefit. As such, we do not consider it a very good value.

The BLACK+DECKER does not do well mulching but prefers to bag the clippings
The BLACK+DECKER does not do well mulching but prefers to bag the clippings

Conclusion


The BLACK+DECKER CM2043 is an economy lawnmower that, despite its low cost, fails to warrant its expense. While the machine is maneuverable, it lacks self-propulsion, it has a short runtime that is amplified by the long recharge time, and it generally lacks cutting power. Finally, it lacks several ease of use features that many of its peers can claim.


Nick Miley and Austin Palmer