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Makita XRU15PT 36V
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$324.84 at Amazon
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$139.00 at Amazon
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|Bottom Line||A perfect blend of performance, ergonomics, and versatility, this trimmer is up to any task||A high performance trimming, detailing, and weed eating machine that comes with best-in-class features to make your yard chores a breeze||Costing a fraction of the top-tier models, this yard tool does a great job of holding its own against much more expensive and full-size offerings||For folks desiring a trimmed yard while sticking to a budget, this model is up to the task||This model has some nice features, and does well on grass, but isn't the most ergonomic or powerful|
|Rating Categories||Makita XRU15PT 36V||Ego Power+ Powerloa...||Black+Decker LST136||Craftsman V20 Weedw...||Worx 20V Power Shar...|
|Ease of Use (35%)|
|Specs||Makita XRU15PT 36V||Ego Power+ Powerloa...||Black+Decker LST136||Craftsman V20 Weedw...||Worx 20V Power Shar...|
|Cutting path||15 in||16 in||13 in||15 in||12 in|
|Measured weight||10.2 lb||12.8 lb||6.6 lb||7.0 lb||5.2 lb|
|Number of speed settings||3||2||6||2||1|
|Shoulder strap attachment||Yes||Yes||No||No||No|
|Line feed mechanism||Bump||Auto||Auto||Button||Auto|
|Measured sound level from ear level||83.6 dBa||85.4 dBa||85.5 dBa||81.5 dBa||83.2 dBa|
|Measured no-load runtime||88 min||50 min||43 min||35 min||20 min|
|Nominal voltage||36 V||56 V||36 V||20 V||20 V|
|Measured Amp-hours||5 Ah||4 Ah||2 Ah||4 Ah||2 Ah|
Our Analysis and Test Results
One fairly unique feature of this the Makita 36V trimmer is that it uses a pair of 18V batteries in series to achieve the higher voltage used by most cordless yard tools. This means that it uses the same batteries as many of Makita's cordless hand tools, like drills or impact drivers, allowing you to use the same battery across your entire spectrum of Makita tools, cutting down on the clutter of charging cords and chargers in your garage considerably.
Our most important rating metric for these tools is their weed-eating performance, with scores based on how effective each trimmer is at clearing vegetation, how much power it has for cutting through tougher plants, and how easy it is to use for making detailed or precise cuts. The Makita 36V delivered a phenomenal performance, earning one of the top scores overall.
We found the Makita 36V to be very effective at clearing weeds and plants. It cuts a clean path wherever you point it. We also liked that you can cut almost flush with the ground without kicking up a giant cloud of dust. This tool also has plenty of power to slice and dice even tougher vegetation, cutting through woodier stems and thicker patches of weeds without getting bogged down or stalling at all.
While this cordless string trimmer does pack plenty of power, we still found it to be an awesome tool for making detailed cuts. It has a smaller guard that lets it be highly maneuverable and a slower speed setting so you can clear weeds away from objects and more delicate plants without completely destroying them in the process.
Ease of Use
After rating and ranking the weed-eating performance of each, we moved on to scoring the convenience and ease of use of each cordless yard tool. The Makita 36V once again delivered some exceptional results, earning its spot right at the top of the group.
This string trimmer uses a bump mechanism to dispense more line, which we found to operate very smoothly and efficiently. It is not the most intuitive to change the line the first time since there weren't any immediately apparent marks or labels to show where to release the cover. However, it was super easy to do once we consulted the manual, and we didn't have any issues once we figured it out.
This trimmer is just a bit heavier than some of the other models, but we didn't find this to be too much of an issue since the tool is so nicely balanced and ergonomically designed.
It's very comfortable to hold, even for marathon weed-eating sessions. The shoulder strap holds it at a good angle, and the handle has a rubber dampener that helps minimize fatigue from vibration. The handle also has a grippy texture and is easy to hold securely.
We do wish that the guard performed a little better. It's small, so it does not get in the way while making precise cuts which is nice. But when cutting down large swaths of weeds, debris flung back on our legs and up to our face, which isn't ideal.
Our next round of tests focused on how long you could run each of these cordless tools and if you have the option of reducing power to maximize runtime. The Makita 36V continued to dominate, again earning one of the best scores of the group for its top-notch showing.
This string trimmer also offers three different speed settings — low, medium, and high — so you effectively balance your power and runtime requirements for maximum efficiency.
This cordless string trimmer ran for just under an hour and a half continuously under no-load conditions using the stock batteries, which is one of the longest times of the entire group.
Our final round of tests looked at how loud each of these yard tools is, with scores based on measured noise levels for the operator. We also deducted points from any models that had particularly irritating tones or high-pitched whines. The Makita 36V finished out our review process with another top-tier performance.
This trimmer produced a fairly low-pitched hum which we found to be fairly inoffensive for bystanders.
This cordless string trimmer is one of the quietest models of the entire group, with our SPL meter registering around 83 dBa at ear height.
Should You Buy the Makita XRU15PT 36V?
The Makita 36V is a top-performing trimmer that excels in its adaptability to a plethora of weed-trimming scenarios. If you find yourself trimming dense weeds just as often as edging a sidewalk, this comfortable trimmer should be at the top of your considerations. We highly recommend it, especially for those with other Makita tools for battery interoperability. It has plenty of weed-eating power and runtime, all in a comfortable and easy-to-use package.
What Other Cordless String Trimmers Should You Consider?
If you're in the market for top-of-the-line performance, we also recommend the Ego Power+ Powerload with Line IQ ST1623T. The Ego is up to any task in your yard or field and clocks in slightly less expensive than the Makita. It's also backed by the impressive line of Ego batteries if you have other Ego tools. If you're shopping on a budget, Black+Decker LST136 offers excellent performance in a compact package at a more appealing price point.