Admittedly, the Ryobi RY40460 is neither the most powerful nor quietest cordless leaf blower we have seen so far. It also doesn't have a terribly impressive battery life, though it is one of the more ergonomic and comfortable. However, it couples an alright performance at a much more palatable price than the premium top-tier blowers, earning it the Best Buy Award and is our top recommendation for anyone shopping for a new leaf blower on a tight budget.
Ryobi 40V RY40460 Review
Pros: Much more affordable, exceptionally ergonomic
Cons: Not the most powerful, very loud
Compare to Similar Products
Ryobi 40V RY40460
|Price||$160 List||$299 List|
$270.47 at Amazon
$129.00 at Amazon
$144.99 at Amazon
$99.99 at Amazon
|Pros||Much more affordable, exceptionally ergonomic||Excellent power, solidly ergonomic, quieter than average||Inexpensive, great battery life||Decent power, impressively ergonomic||Quiet, cheap|
|Cons||Not the most powerful, very loud||Moderate battery life, has a high-pitched undertone||Pitifully weak||Limited battery life, loud||Pitifully weak|
|Bottom Line||Ideal for the budget-conscious shopper, this blower offers just enough power and battery life for the needs of most home-owners||Get this if you want a powerful leaf blower that isn't going to blow your budget||The G-MAX isn't very expensive but we didn't think it was very good at all||The WORX packs a surprising punch but still couldn't match the top models in our tests||While this blower is cheap, it isn't very good and we didn't really like it|
|Rating Categories||Ryobi 40V RY40460||Snapper 82-Volt Max||Greenworks G-MAX 40V||WORX Turbine 56V WG591||BLACK+DECKER LSW40C|
|Specs||Ryobi 40V RY40460||Snapper 82-Volt Max||Greenworks G-MAX 40V||WORX Turbine 56V WG591||BLACK+DECKER LSW40C|
|Measured Weight w/ Battery||9 lbs||8.7 lbs||6 lbs||7.8 lbs||4 lbs|
|Variable speed||Yes, trigger||Yes, trigger or cruise control dial||Yes, dial||Yes, dial||No|
|Included Battery Size||4 Ah||2 Ah||4 Ah||2 Ah||1.5 Ah|
|Measured Charge Time||2 hrs 45 min||30 min||2 hrs||1 hr 20 min||3 hrs 28 min|
|Measured Run Time on Turbo Boost||18 min 5 sec||N/A||N/A||10 min 15 sec||N/A|
|Measured Run Time on Highest Standard Mode||26 min||15 min 17 sec||38 min 50 sec||16 min 36 sec||25 min 10 sec|
|# of Batteries Included||1||1||1||1||1|
|Measured Operator Sound Level Highest Setting||93.3 dBa||83.9 dBa||84.3 dBa||87.6 dBa||73.6 dBa|
|Operating Modes||Variable speed pulling trigger with turbo button||Variable speed pulling trigger||On/Off switch with speeds 1-6||Low, Med, High, Turbo||On/Off switch|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Comprising 50% of the final score for the RY40460, our leaf blower strength tests are by far the most significant to the overall rank of each blower. For this metric, we compared and scored each blower on how easily and effectively it can remove all sorts of common debris, how far its maximum range is, and how high it can levitate a beach ball. The RY40460 is just a bit more powerful than average, earning it a 6 out of 10 for this rating category.
It takes a bit longer than the top products to clear stuck-on dirt and grime but the Ryobi could usually do it if you got close enough. The RY40460 does have a respectable enough range with lighter items, able to blow sand a little further than 13' away when the Ryobi is held at a stationary point.
It also did fairly well at floating the beach ball, able to get it to hover at a distance of 4' from the end of nozzle on it High mode and 5' on Turbo.
To see how the Ryobi handled moving different sorts of rubbish, we used it to clear a section of our parking lot and a bike path of leaves, litter, pine needles, dirt, and rock. The RY40460 did well at moving the mess but you can definitely tell that it is a step down in power levels from the top blowers. However, it does have a decent amount of oomph and is able to move lighter items and even smaller pebbles and stones relatively far. It did get bogged down if the pine needles got matted together, only able to move the lighter portions of it rather than moving the entire clump as the top-tier cordless blowers can.
Our next set of evaluations are concerned with the performance of the Ryobi's battery system, which combine to account for 25% of its final score. To determine points, we started each blower with a full battery, then measure how long it lasted running the blower at its most powerful normal mode, then repeated this test with the Ryobi on its Turbo boost mode. We then estimated normal use to be a 70/30 divide between using these modes and calculated an effective run time. Finally, we also timed how long the factory charger took to completely recharge a spent battery. The Ryobi RY40460 did about average in this metric, receiving a 5 out of 10 for its results.
The Ryobi's 40-volt, 4 amp hour battery lasted for 26 minutes on high and a little more than 18 minutes on Turbo mode, which overall counted as a runtime of 20 minutes and 24 seconds for scoring purposes when using our estimated 70/30 split.
Unfortunately, the Ryobi RY40460 takes an exceptionally long time to recharge, with a dead battery only hitting 100% charge after 2 hours and 45 minutes on the charger.
Next, we evaluated and scored how it felt to carry and use the RY40460, looking at its balance, grip, and weight. We also compared the location of the air intake on each blower, deducting some points from models that are disposed to sucking in your clothes when switching hands or throughout normal use. Overall, these evaluations account for 15% of the final score for the Ryobi, which earned a 7 out of 10 for being one of the most comfortable and ergonomic models of the group.
The Ryobi is about average when it comes to heft, weighing in at 9 lbs. with the battery installed.
This cordless leaf blower has a very comfortable grip and it naturally rests at a great angle when held in a neutral position. The trigger is a little stiffer and wider than the others and takes a little more effort to engage than some of the others but it is still relatively easy to press. It also isn't a hassle to hit the Turbo button while holding the Ryobi normally.
This blower has an air intake on the back of the main housing but the battery protrudes from the back, providing some protection and preventing your shirt from getting caught when you switch the RY40460 between hands.
The remaining 10% of the score for each blower is allocated to its noise levels. For this metric, we measured the sound level for the operator on the most powerful operating mode and for a bystander 50' away, awarding points accordingly. Regrettably, the Ryobi thoroughly failed to impress in these assessments, being one of the loudest products we have tested to date, earning it a 3 out of 10.
This blower measured in at 93.3 dBa on its Turbo mode for the person using it and 83.7 dBa for someone 50' away. On top of being one of the louder blowers, the Ryobi also has a high-pitched whine that all of our judges universally agreed is highly unpleasant.
While the Ryobi isn't the most powerful and is quite loud, we think it's the absolute best option for a budget-minded shopper trying to keep costs down while getting a decent leaf blower.
Overall, it's definitely the Ryobi's relatively affordable and attractive price that earned it recognition, not necessarily its performance. It did fairly well in most tests but can't compare to the top-tier models. However, it does cost less than half as much, making it one of the absolute best choices if you are shopping on a tighter budget.
— Austin Palmer, David Wise, and Jenna Ammerman