Is Lithium Battery The Best Riding Lawn Mower Battery?

A good lawn mower battery is crucial for a quick-starting and smooth-running of lawn mower. When you are buying a new battery for your lawn mower, questions like “When did batteries get so expensive?” and “If I’m paying so much, is it going to be worth it?” and “Is it going to last me a long time?” might come to your mind. Finding the most value for the money can be challenging when buying any product.

Good old lead-acid batteries are a common option due to their low prices. But there are better options on the market. One such option is lithium-ion batteries. These batteries offer many benefits, with an average lifespan of a decade or more. In this article, we will discuss whether a lithium battery is the best riding lawn mower battery or not. 

Types of Lawn Mower Batteries: Lead Acid vs Lithium Ion

Lead-Acid Batteries


Lead acid batteries generally consist of alternating lead and lead dioxide plates. These plates are connected in series to make a cell. Over 90% of lead-acid batteries are lead. A mixture of water and sulfuric acid makes up the electrolyte in these batteries. The lead dioxide and lead plates are immersed in this electrolyte.


Lead-acid batteries have a low capacity per unit volume compared to lithium batteries. They are also much heavier than lithium batteries. They have a 60% efficiency and a 30-50% capacity range. Lead acid batteries are to be kept between 95-100 % state of charge to maintain their health. Keeping a charge below this range can be detrimental to the battery.


The cycle life of lead-acid batteries is 300 cycles, and a depth of discharge of 50%. This means that after 300 charge cycles, 50% of capacity will be reduced. Further, lead-acid batteries are the most recycled batteries. More than 90% of the battery components can be reused. Most new batteries’ lead is recycled from old lead-acid batteries. 


Lead acid batteries cost less than half the price of lithium batteries.


A higher thermal runaway can damage a battery. The increase in temperature causes a rapid release of energy. This further adds temperature and can lead to an explosion. It occurs when the internal heat generation rate exceeds the rate at which the heat is expelled. If it continues long, the battery’s temperature rises until the cells dry out. In the end, the container softens, breaks, and melts.


  • Lower cost
  • high recyclability


  • Heavier 
  • Shorter life
  • Slower charging

Lithium Batteries


The lithium-ion battery is a relatively newer type of battery. It comes in many different technologies. These include lithium cobalt oxide, lithium manganese oxide, and lithium iron phosphate. Only 3% of the lithium-ion battery is lithium. The electrolyte used in lithium-ion batteries is usually an organic compound.


Lithium batteries offer a greater power output per kg than lead-acid batteries. Because they are constructed differently, lithium batteries have a faster charge time. They accept charges at a much higher rate, so they charge much quicker. These batteries are very light, almost 1/3rd the weight of lead-acid batteries.


They have a longer life expectancy than lead acid. These batteries have a very high efficiency of 92%, much higher than the 60% of lead-acid batteries. They also have a greater usable capacity of about 80%, much higher than the 30-50% of lead-acid batteries. These batteries have thousands of cycles with 80% depth of discharge. 


Lithium-ion batteries are expensive compared to lead-acid batteries. But, their price has had a slow decline over the years.


Lithium batteries are to be kept only between 75-85% state of charge. Any higher than this, there is a risk of damage to the battery. A higher thermal runaway in lithium batteries can cause short circuits. This can happen because of over-charging. Lithium batteries contain more energy per unit volume. This is why thermal runaways can be more violent in them than lead-acid batteries. 

But, this can be avoided with ease by a smart battery management system (BMS). The BMS monitors the battery’s voltage, current, and temperature. Unlike lead acid, lithium batteries’ BMS system protects them from over- and under-charge. Both of these can be detrimental to a battery.


  • Light  
  • Longer life
  • Faster charging


  • Higher upfront cost

Why Is Lithium Battery The Best Riding Lawn Mower Battery

High Energy Density

There are many reasons why lithium batteries are so popular in the mobile industry. One of these reasons is their high energy density. Lithium-ion batteries hold a higher energy capacity per unit volume than lead-acid batteries.

These batteries store large amounts of energy in a relatively smaller size. This allows you to ride your lawn mower for long periods. You won’t have to worry about recharging it again and again.

It provides consistent power throughout the ride. There won’t be any ups and downs in the performance of your riding lawn mower. In simple words, you can ride your lawn mower for a larger distance on just one charge. This makes them the best riding lawn mower battery choice.

Lightweight And Compact 

Above, we talked about lithium batteries providing higher energy in a smaller size. This characteristic is what makes them lightweight. They offer higher energy without needing a larger battery size. So, they are smaller and more compact than other types of batteries.

Hence, you’re getting a higher energy output and an easy-to-carry and compact design. Lithium batteries generally weigh 30-60% less than lead-acid batteries. If a lawn mower’s battery is light, there is less physical strain during handling and ease in mobility. 

Fast Charging 

Lithium batteries have a lower downtime. Compared to lead-acid batteries, lithium batteries charge up to 5 times faster. This means you won’t have to wait long hours for your battery to charge between uses.

You will be able to charge your lawn mower battery fast and get back to your gardening activities. This will increase your productivity as you can use your lawn mower uninterrupted. Despite such rapid charging cycles, these batteries keep their longevity. So you won’t have to worry about your battery going out of efficiency. 

Low Self-Discharge

Even when disconnected from the external circuit, batteries can still discharge. This happens due to the internal reactions of the batteries that cause energy loss. So, even when not in use, batteries can lose their energy. This is common in most batteries.

Lithium batteries have a very low rate of self-discharge. They have a general 0.5-3% self-discharge per month. Suppose you’ve charged your lawn mower and kept it for a few days. In that case, thanks to the lithium batteries, it will still have its charging. Your riding lawn mower will be ready to use even after long periods of no use.

Extended Life

We already know that lithium-ion batteries have a much longer lifespan than lead-acid. They can last up to 2-3 times longer than their lead-acid counterparts. This makes them cost-effective over the long haul. The longer lifespan, and hence, reduced replacement frequency, offsets their higher upfront cost.

You can go through 1000 to 2000 charge cycles before their efficiency reduces. Plus, the efficiency is only reduced to 80% of the original efficiency. Moreover, reduced replacement frequency also means less waste. So, they are a sustainable choice.  

Lithium Batteries’ Sensitivity To Extreme Temperature

Effects Of Cold Weather 

In winter, slow charging and lower capacity are common in lithium batteries. At very low temperatures, there is internal resistance within the battery. This causes the flow of charge to slow, resulting in slower charging.

Despite that, there is minimal difference in the performance of lithium batteries. But, there is a big decrease in the performance of lead-acid batteries in very cold weather.

Effects of Hot Weather 

The recommended temperature range for lithium batteries is 32-113 degrees Fahrenheit. Lithium batteries’ optimal performance and storage capacity increase as the temperature increases. But it affects the battery’s lifecycle. Charging at higher temperatures decreases the battery lifecycle at a higher rate.

Consistent charging and discharging at very high temperatures can affect the battery’s performance. But, their lead acid counterparts are much more temperature-sensitive. They have an optimal temperature range of 77-86 degrees Fahrenheit.

At higher temperatures, the chemical reactions within the lead-acid batteries increase. This leads to self-discharge and plate corrosion, which can cause irreparable battery damage. While lithium batteries do get affected by very hot temperatures, it’s not as bad as you might think. 

Safety And Maintenance

Lithium batteries can have short circuits due to higher thermal runaway during over-charging. This happens because they contain more energy per unit volume.

Lithium batteries come with a thermal management system and battery management system. These systems improve safety by protecting your battery. They regulate the temperature and the charge and discharge cycles of the battery.

This prevents the battery from overheating and damage. Moreover, lithium batteries have no risk of acid leaks and spills. This is because they do not contain the corrosive acids that are in lead-acid batteries. 

A very convenient feature of lithium batteries is that they need minimal maintenance. There is no need for frequent water level checks or acid refills, like in lead-acid batteries. Along with hassle-free maintenance, these batteries have many advantages. Subsequently, lithium batteries are the best riding lawn mower battery choice.

Environmental Impact And Sustainability

Lithium batteries, having no acid or lead content, do not pose any environmental risks. They are an eco-friendly option with few hazardous materials. These batteries emit fewer greenhouse gases. Resulting in a lower carbon footprint than most other batteries. Plus, their longer lifespan also contributes to low environmental impact. This is because less frequent replacement needs mean less waste.

Cost Considerations

Lithium batteries are, without a doubt, more expensive than lead-acid batteries. Their higher initial cost is why some might stay away from them, unable to indulge in all its benefits. But these people need to look at the bigger picture.

Do a long-term cost analysis, and you’ll understand how cost-effective these batteries are. This is because their longer lifespan and lower maintenance costs balance their price. You save on replacement costs and maintenance costs with lithium-ion batteries. In contrast, lead-acid batteries are cheaper. But, they offer slow charging, less capacity, costly maintenance, and higher replacement frequency.

You can either get a cheaper battery and be inconvenienced for the rest of the time you have that battery. Or, you can get an expensive battery and be at peace for the rest of the time you have that battery. Also, note that the expensive battery lasts for a longer time as well.

How to Choose the Right Lithium-Ion Battery For Your Riding Lawn Mower Battery


Compatibility is the most important consideration when choosing a riding lawn mower battery. Check the specifications of your riding land mower’s model. See if the battery will work with your lawn mower’s specific model. This is because not all models are compatible with every battery type. 


Check for your riding lawn mower’s voltage. Generally, lawnmowers have an electric system of 12 volts. If yours is the same, the battery you buy should have 12 volts at full charge condition. 

Ampere-Hour (Ah) Rating

A lawn mower’s Ampere-Hour or Ah rating is the energy storage capacity in the battery. It tells you how long you can ride your lawn mower without recharge. In simple words, it’s the capacity of the battery. You must carefully consider this factor. Decide by the workload and lawn size you’ll ride your mower in. 

Brand Reputation

Always select the battery from a reputable and reliable brand. For the best riding lawn mower battery, look at the authenticity and credibility of the brand. You can do a web search and check reviews from other customers to decide the best option for you. 


All in all, lithium-ion batteries are the best riding lawn mower battery option. Undoubtedly, they offer many advantages along with long-term cost-effectiveness. They are light and compact. They offer high energy density and fast charging. Subsequently, giving your riding lawn mower an excellent performance.

You can carry your mowing activities with lithium batteries without long charging breaks. You won’t have to spend your money on maintenance needs or frequent replacements. And remember, these batteries are a sustainable option with limited environmental impact.

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