Milwaukee 2823-22HD Mower Review | Best Battery Lawn Mowers 2022

Milwaukee Tool has generated some buzz for its long-awaited 2823-22HD battery-powered lawn mower. Like it should be. The brand pitches the machine squarely to landscape professionals and makes some pretty substantial claims: it delivers instant torque and maximum engine speed with no throttle, essentially on-demand mowing capability. Milwaukee also says the 2823-22HD resists stalling and gives you high ground speed and cut quality. Oh yes, and it costs $1,000.

Because of that four-figure price tag and the fact that the company is tailoring this lawn mower for landscapers, we wanted to put those claims to the test and provide some context that might help you determine if this machine is right for you. Today, landscaping is all about high productivity without sacrificing a well-mowed area. Landscapers have to pull a mower off the trailer, have the lawn mowed, trimmed and blown, and put it all back on the trailer, sometimes in minutes. Profit margins are slim in this job, and its fast-paced nature makes it difficult for equipment and contractors. Many people in the business call it “mow and blow”.

But do any of the attributes that Milwaukee has built into this contractor mower apply to you? Maybe. However, given the cost of this mower, it is important that you consider this matter carefully before spending your hard-earned cash.

Let’s say you have a large lawn to mow. What you’re looking for is a durable mower with plenty of runtime. Maybe you’re a remodeling contractor or a house turner and need to keep the weed under control on your construction project. What you need is a sturdy mower. Maybe you do maintenance and odd jobs and sometimes have to mow the lawn. You don’t pay much attention to the machine or its cut quality or anything else about it; all you need is to work every time you press the power button.

Is the Milwaukee mower right for you?

Yes. In the three scenarios we describe above, we can say that the Milwaukee should perform well. On the other hand, so will many other mowers. Maybe they won’t perform as well or be as durable, but they will work.

So why the Milwaukee? It’s a good question. If you go for this, you need to have the budget and price capability. Let’s get into the details.

Quick Stats

  • Width: 21 in.
  • Deck Height Range: 1-4″ (single lever adjustment)
  • Drive: rear wheel
  • Maximum speed: 4 km/h
  • Autonomy: 1 hour
  • Price: $1,099 (with two 12 Ah batteries and charger)

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    If the statements are true

    Milwaukee’s motto is “Nothing But Heavy Duty”. We’ve tested the company’s products for decades, and we can vouch for that as fact, not hype.

    But what does this marketing phrase look like in terms of the 2823-22HD? The mower is literally heavy. With both batteries on board and its bag in place, it weighs 84.6 pounds. Its blade motor is massive, as are its two 12 Ah batteries. Each weighs 3.2 pounds. The mower has a steel deck with a rolled edge and a 1⁄2 inch diameter steel axle, on which the motor-drive gear assembly is mounted.

    We put the mower to work on our test area where the grass was normal height (about 6 inches) but extremely coarse, dry and tough, with a lot more thatch than it normally has. This stubble is due to a summer’s worth of mowing with commercial mowing equipment tuned to shred clippings in the grass. Literally, the testing area was clogged with grass clippings.

    On a hot and windy morning in July, we went to work. Here’s what we found.

    To claim: Instant torque
    True. There is no engine speed boost here. As soon as you start this mower, you’re ready to mow. Be prepared to get away from the starting line quickly because this mower will dive forward and you better keep up with it. In fact, we recommend setting the speed dial (with options 1-5) to an intermediate setting that will help you find your rhythm and cut through the quality before increasing ground speed. Otherwise, at maximum speed, the mower will move forward so quickly that you may inadvertently lift the front wheels (pitch up, if you will).

    The trimmer’s speed control is continuously adjustable between five speeds, from 1 to 5. Turn the dial with your thumb and press the thumb paddle at the handle.

    Trevor Raab

    milwaukee electric lawn mower in use
    Two massive 12 Ah batteries slide into the battery bay. Fully charged, they offer one hour of autonomy.

    Trevor Raab

    To claim: One hour autonomy
    True. We mowed 10,890 square feet of grass (nearly a quarter acre) in less than an hour and did a bagging test as well. We think the Milwaukee weather rating is realistic under normal mowing conditions. If you have to control a lawn with grass up to your knees, you should expect less battery life. On the other hand, it’s one of the few battery-powered lawn mowers we’ve tested that we think can handle such a job. If you’re just trimming the tips of the grass, we wouldn’t be surprised if this mower cuts for more than an hour, maybe even a lot longer.

    To claim: Exceptional cutting, bagging and mulching
    It depends. Before we get too deep into the details of how this mower performed mulching and bagging, we need to discuss one unique feature, one we’ve never seen before: a “high lift mode” setting. “. Press the button with a blade icon on the left side of the handle and increase motor and blade speed to improve mulching and bagging. However, using the setting drains the battery charge faster. We think it’s best saved for the toughest conditions such as thick, wet grass or when bagging leaves in the fall. Like most battery-powered mowers, the 2823-22HD’s blade speed automatically increases when you encounter thick patches of grass. For all but the most severe cutting conditions, this feature is sufficient.

    Our mowing conditions were so harsh that they did not allow us to fully check the quality of cut. This Milwaukee will leave a well mowed surface. Our test grass was dry and brittle, more likely to break than cut. So as with any mower, it was necessary to adjust its mowing height and especially its ground speed according to the grass. We’re emphasizing the speed setting here because this Milwaukee is blazing fast—the fastest self-propelled lawnmower we’ve ever tested.

    milwaukee electric lawn mower in use

    Trevor Raab

    On our first cut at full speed, the 2823-22HD moved forward so easily that we got no feedback that it was struggling at all. But its cut quality was terrible. We raised the mower deck and kept the ground speed at its maximum setting (5) and tried it again. The fit has improved, but we were still not happy with it. Finally, we left the mower at its height setting but reduced the speed a notch and a half (about 3.5). At this point we have produced an acceptable level of strawiness and finished appearance. It’s the same trade-off and adjustment you’d have to make with any mower, gas or electric.

    In terms of bagging, the mower can be said to bag very well. We made four 145-foot passes with it and found the bag to be so full that the grass out back was compressed.

    Final analysis: This is a versatile and fast lawn mower. For us, its strong point is not so much that it leaves a good quality of cut and that it grinds well. Lots of mowers do that. It performs these tasks and has a high degree of adjustability due to the quick control you have over its deck height, ground speed, engine speed and of course whether you are using mulching, bagging or discharge chute lateral.

    what else you get

    milwaukee electric lawn mower in use
    A large, comfortable lever adjusts the height of the mower. It is easy to move up and down. Slide it from one notch to another.

    Trevor Raab

    For your money, you also get the full set of mower features: single-point deck height adjustment, tall rear wheels (10.25-inch diameter), a pair of LED headlights (mounted on the deck side) and a fold-flat handle that allows the 2823-22HD to be stored on its end, upright. Finally, the high-quality bag and its sturdy frame lift directly through the handle for easy emptying.

    The 2823-22HD mower is expensive, but it’s a lot of machine. It offers good cutting, mulching and bagging quality, excellent ground speed and a high degree of adjustability. Whether the market accepts a $1,000 walk-behind mower remains to be seen. But this mower could be pushing the boundaries of functionality in a product category where it’s hard to innovate.

    Fuel M18 21 inch. 2823-22HD Self-Propelled Lawn Mower



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