Black & Decker CM1836 Review

Black & Decker CM1836

11110
(Rated: 4.1 / 5) Review by Frank Lowery
Noise11111
Ease of Assembly11110.5
Maneuverability1110.50
Balance And Handling11110
Cut Quality1110.50

Maintaining your lawn can be a lot of work, and mowing it should not be more of a bother than absolutely necessary. The Black & Decker CM1836 takes a lot of the hassle out of mowing your lawn. It has very efficient motor and a blade that has been improved since the CM1000 to provide a cleaner cut. The battery can mow a lawn that is up to 1/3 of an acre on just a single charge. This allows you the benefits of using an electric mower but also eliminates the hassle of dealing with extension cords.

Because it is an electric mower, you do not have to deal with the strain and frustration of pulling a start cord, and you do not end up smelling like gasoline fumes after you are finished mowing your lawn. The Black & Decker CM1836 starts easily with the turn of a key and a quick pull of the handle. Besides that, the CM1836 has much quieter operation than gas mowers, so you will not have to worry about disturbing your neighbors while you cut your lawn. You can easily adjust the height of the mower with a single lever, and the mower folds up for compact storage.

Review Summary

review summaryThe Black & Decker CM1836 has a number of advantages over gas powered lawn mowers. First, you won’t have to fill the gas tank, prime the engine, and then deal with the frustration of pulling a starter cord. To start it, you just turn a key, quickly pull the starter handle, and you’re all set. Second, you won’t need to keep stinky gasoline cans on hand in your garage and you won’t have to worry about dealing with messy oil, because the mower runs on a 36 volt battery with an Energy Star rating. The battery has the advantage of eliminating the need for power cords, which almost always seem to get tangled up and often almost reach that far corner of the lawn but never seem to quite make it.

The 36 volt battery can cut up to 14,375 square feet on a single charge – that’s almost a third of an NFL football field, and more than enough for the average backyard lawn. The powerful battery and improved blade are perfect for large, thick lawns that other electric mowers just can’t seem to handle. The battery is integrated into the mower design, which means you cannot remove it to charge separately, but it has enough power that you probably won’t need to. In addition, the battery is Energy Star qualified, which means it is proven to use less energy and save you money.

The CM1836 has a powerful, efficient motor and a newly improved blade design that allow for cleaner cutting and a longer run time than previous models. This efficiency will save you time and work, both of which translate to saving money. Along with the fact that the CM1836 is much quieter than gas powered mowers, the efficiency means you can mow your lawn quickly and whenever you want to, without having to worry about disturbing your neighbors. Before you know it, you’ll be grilling or playing with your kids while your neighbors are still out mowing their lawns.

Specifications

review specificationsThe CM1836 comes with an integrated 36 volt battery that, along with the efficient motor, can provide enough power to mow up to 1/3 of an acre. It has easy one touch adjustment that allows you to change the height of all four wheels with a single lever, and can be adjusted to five different heights ranging from 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 inches. With a single pass you can cut through the thickest grass, and because the blade is 18 inches wide, you won’t have to make as many passes. The user friendly start system is a simple two step process: just turn the key and pull a lever. Grass handling options include side discharge, bagging, and mulching, and you can switch from one to the other quickly, even while you are mowing. Since it’s not gas powered, there are zero harmful emissions in your yard, no fuel costs, minimal upkeep and repairs, and no mess or stench from gasoline cans in your garage. The handle has a more ergonomic grip than other mowers, which minimizes back and wrist strain while operating. The handle folds down for easy, compact storage.

Dimensions 37.5 x 15.5 x 21.5 inches
Power 36V Integrated Battery (Inc. 1 battery)
Charge Time 12 Hours to 100%
Deck Size
(cutting swath)
18-inch
Mulch/Bag/Discharge Rear bag (mulching insert and side discharge chute sold separately)
Cutting Area up to 1/3 acre
Runtime charge
(conditions may vary)
up to 45 minutes
Drive System Manual Push
Starter Handle pull
Height Adjustment One point (single lever adjusts all four wheels simultaneously)
Height Settings 1-1/2- to 3-1/2-inch
Wheel Size 7-inch front / 8-inch rear
Weight 64 pounds
Warranty 2 years

Mowing is much easier with the CM1836. From the easy pull lever starting system, to the one point height adjustment lever, to the powerful motor and integrated battery, the CM1836 takes a lot of the work out of lawn care. Combine that with folding for easy storage and the three options for grass management, and you will find that cutting the lawn has never been this trouble free.

Description

review descriptionThe Black & Decker CM1836 is a cordless electric mower, which gets rid of the problem of worrying about long, bulky power cords. Power cords seem to inevitably get tangled, no matter how carefully you store them; they are heavy and bulky; they can pull out of the socket when you’re thirty yards away from the garage; they trip you up and can be easily damaged if you run over them with the mower. The CM1836 is powered by a 36 volt, rechargeable, integrated battery that is powerful enough to mow for 45 minutes and cover an area of 1/3 of an acre. The battery has an Energy Star rating, which means it is top of the line for energy efficiency. This will save hundreds of dollars on fuel and maintenance costs every year, and because the battery has zero emissions, you will be reducing your overall carbon footprint. The EPA estimates that over one million tons of air polluting emissions are produced just from gas mowers, so you will be helping the environment by using and electric one.

The CM1836 is an upgrade to Black & Decker’s CM1000, and it has all of the features of the older model, plus a number of improvements. The battery on the CM1836 is 50% more powerful than the CM1000’s, which means it can cover more ground and hold a charge longer. On the whole, the CM1836 is a smaller and lighter design than the old model. It has a more ergonomic handle that provides for a firmer grip and also helps to reduce back and wrist strain while operating it. The safety key is designed to be more childproof than the one on the CM1000, and the CM1836 has a starting mechanism that is simpler and more elegant than the old model’s.

Because the CM1836 is such a quiet lawnmower, you can run it without disturbing your neighbors, which means you can start mowing early in the morning before the summer sun gets too hot. This will leave the rest of the day for relaxing in the yard or playing catch or football with your kids on your freshly mowed lawn before your neighbors even open up their garages to get their mowers out.

The Black & Decker CM1836 can handle thick, tall grass even if it hasn’t been mowed for a while, and a fully charged battery holds enough power for mowing over 14,000 square feet – about 1/3 of an acre. That’s enough to let you mow both your front and back lawns on a single charge. The cutting height ranges from 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 inches, so you can get just the right height for your yard, and all four wheels are adjusted easily with a single lever. For safety reasons, the mower cannot be adjusted while you are mowing; you have to turn it off and remove the safety key first. The easy to use startup system is a simple two step process: first, turn the starting key and then just pull the start handle. That’s all! This is much easier than pull cords in gas powered mowers that usually require several strong tugs and the hassle of priming the engine first.

The CM1836 has three grass processing options: you can choose to have it discharge clippings out the side, mulching them into the lawn, or bagging them to add to your compost pile or throw away. You can easily switch between the three modes in a matter of minutes, which means you can opt to mulch on your front lawn, side discharge on the back lawn, and use a back on walkways. You can combine these options to make sure you are minimizing the workload by eliminating cleanup and mulching where it’s needed or bagging where it isn’t.

The handle on the CM1836 can be folded down, which allows for compact storage. Along with this feature, the dimensions of the mower allow you to store it on a bottom shelf in your garage, underneath your tool bench in your shed, or even upright. The size of the CM1836 makes it one of the easiest mowers on the market to store. This is ideal if you have limited space in your garage. The CM1836 assembles in minutes after you have unpacked it, and Black & Decker provides a two year warranty along with a lifetime deck warranty on the model.

Pros

review prosWhen you are purchasing a new lawnmower there are several things to consider. An electric mower has several advantages over a gas mower: you don’t have to buy and store gasoline in your garage, it’s better for the environment, and it runs quieter than a gas mower. But battery powered mowers have some drawbacks as well, and it’s important to compare them to make sure you are getting one that will do the job you need. The CM1836 is one of the more powerful battery powered mowers on the market, and it has a 36 volt battery that can hold a charge long enough to cut up to a third of an acre and run the mower for up to 45 minutes on a single charge. This is important if you have a lawn with thick, tough grass or if you have front and back lawns that are both large.

  1. The battery is 50% more powerful than previous models, at 36 volts : The older Black & Decker CM1000 model had a 24 volt battery, which meant that it often struggled with tall, thick grass, and it did not hold a charge as long as the CM1836 does. The CM1836 can power right through tall grass with very few problems, and it has no trouble cutting even the thickest lawns out there. The battery is powerful enough to cover up to 14,375 square feet on a single charge. That is the equivalent of an NFL football field from the back of one end zone to the thirty yard line, all the way from one sideline to the other. That’s a lot of ground. The battery is also strong enough to hold its charge for up to 45 minutes, which is more than enough time to finish just about any home mowing job.
  2. Five height settings and three grass processing options : The CM1836 has five height settings ranging from 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 inches. It isn’t recommended that you cut your grass any shorter than half its height in one mowing, as cutting below that line can damage your lawn, leaving it more susceptible to drought and diseases. The range of height options allows you to cut your lawn in the healthiest manner, and even if you forget to mow one week because you’re out of town, you can adjust the height setting to tackle tall grass. The three processing options for your grass clippings means you can decide whether to mulch the clippings back into the lawn, discharge the clippings out the side – which keeps your work shoes cleaner – or bag the clippings for compost or disposal. It is easy to switch from one mode to another while you are mowing, so you can change up depending on what you need in different areas.
  3. Light weight and small dimensions for easy storage : The mower only weighs 64 pounds, which makes it easier to maneuver, especially with the ergonomic handle. This means you can mow your lawn fairly easily and without risk of back or wrist strain. You also do not have to be particularly big or strong to use this mower. Even teenagers can easily maneuver the CM1836, which means they can help out with yard work and lawn care once they’re old enough. They might even want to use this mower to cut the neighbor’s grass and earn some pocket money. The CM1836’s small size, combined with its fold down handle, also allows for compact storage, which means you will not have to take up a lot of space in your garage or tool shed, and you can even store it under your work bench. This is important for serious gardeners who have lots of tools and limited space.
  4. Elegant starting mechanism and safety features : The CM1836 has a simple, easy to use starting mechanism. Unlike gas powered mowers, which require you to prime the engine and then pull a heavy cord to start them, the CM1836 simply requires you to insert and turn a key, and pull the start handle. That’s it! In addition, the CM1836 has an improved safety key, which means young children will not be in danger of accidentally starting the mower and hurting themselves. Beyond that, the CM1836 has built in features that prevent the user from adjusting the height or grass processing options while the mower is running, so there is no danger of carelessly injuring yourself. Finally, the mowing deck has a wider side area embedded within it, which prevents the blade from getting too close to the edge of the mower and potentially snagging flowers or feet with it.
  5. Quieter and less high maintenance : The CM1836 is quieter than other Black & Decker models, in particular, its predecessor, the CM1000. It goes without saying that the CM1836 is far quieter than any gas mower on the market, which means you can mow your lawn whenever you want, without having to worry about disturbing your neighbors. Because it is a battery powered mower, you do not have to worry about using tangled, bulky extension cords, and it requires far less maintenance than gas powered mowers do. In fact, other than sharpening the blade and charging the battery, there really isn’t any maintenance of the CM1836 at all. No need for oil, spark plugs, cleaning air filters, buying and storing gasoline, or priming the engine. No more fumes in the garage and yard, and no more smelling like stinky car exhaust after you have mowed the lawn.

Black & Decker offers a two year warranty on the CM1836, as well as a lifetime warranty on the mower’s deck, and the lawnmower will almost definitely have a longer life than either of them. Even though it is compact and lightweight, the design of this mower is tough, and the battery is powerful enough that it can tackle tall grass week after week for years to come. The mower’s battery can be charged to 100% power in just twelve hours, which means you can mow your lawn, plug it in to charge, and leave it overnight: the mower will be ready to go the next morning. The integrated battery means it will have a longer life than removable batteries. Because it’s so easy to use, so quiet, so low maintenance, and so compact for easy maneuverability and storage, the CM1836 will probably be one of the best mowers you have ever purchased.

Cons

review consOf course, because there are so many different lawnmowers available on the market today, every mower is going to have certain drawbacks when compared to others. Attributes such as the blade width, the height adjustments, the deck size, the motor’s power and the battery life are some of the many features that may be better in some mowers than in others. What is important when you are buying a lawnmower is to determine which features are most important to you. Do you want a wide blade so that you do not have to make as many passes with the mower? Do you prefer a smaller lawnmower that is easier to maneuver and more compact for better storage? Do you want removable batteries or integrated batteries? Ultimately, the savvy shopper will need to determine which areas they are willing to make sacrifices in so that they can get an all around mower that meets their most important needs.

  1. Cutting width is too short compared to other models : The blade of the Black & Decker CM1836 is only eighteen inches wide, which makes for somewhat slender cutting swath. While this can be useful if you are using it to mow narrow walkways on either side of your house, or if you have bushes or trees that you need to maneuver around, if you are cutting a large lawn it will wind up requiring you to make more passes than a wider mower would. That means that mowing your lawn with the CM1836 is going to take more time and be more work than it would be with a larger mower. The fact that you have to make multiple passes in order to finish your lawn can be a major drawback, and this is the single most common complaint about this model.
  2. The integrated battery cannot be removed : Other Black & Decker cordless mowers have removable batteries, which is useful if you are covering a lot of ground. Some users like to have the option of switching out one battery for another if the battery starts to run low. Also, a removable battery gives you the option of charging it indoors, which is important if you do not have an outdoor power source in your garage or tool shed. Otherwise, you will need to run an extension cord outside to charge the CM1836. The fact that you are unable to remove the battery – which, let’s face it, is one of the heavier elements in the mower – means that it may be somewhat difficult to maneuver around for storage. A removable battery would eliminate this problem. Finally, if the battery dies altogether, the fact that it can’t be removed means that this would effectively kill the mower as well.
  3. Battery duration is shorter than other models, and there is no battery indicator : The battery on the CM1836 lasts up to 45 minutes and stores enough charge to allow for mowing up to a third of an acre. While this is usually sufficient to mow the vast majority of typical suburban front and back lawns on one charge, some users have made complaints that the 36 volt battery is not powerful enough and that it loses its charge too quickly. If your lawn is particularly thick as well as rather large, the 36 volt battery may not be powerful enough to efficiently mow the lawn, especially if you are someone who mows your lawn less frequently. And unlike earlier models such as the CM1000, the CM1836 does not have a battery indicator on it, which means you may find yourself suddenly pushing a dead mower if you did not charge it for a full twelve hours prior to use.
  4. Height adjustment mechanism is somewhat difficult to use : There have been a few complaints that the lever for adjusting the blade height is a bit difficult to maneuver. The CM1836 height adjustment mechanism is a single lever for all four wheels, and it allows the user to select from one of five heights between 1-1/2 and 3-1/2 inches, but some users have found that it is hard to move the lever into the desired position. For safety reasons, the new model does not allow the user to adjust the height while the mower is running; you have to shut the mower off and disengage the safety key first. That means that if you want to adjust the height for different areas of your lawn, it is going to take a few minutes longer than it otherwise would, and reviews are mixed about whether this is an inconvenience or a smart safety feature.
  5. The bag on the mower is smaller than other models : While this will not present a problem if you primarily use your mower for mulching clippings back into the lawn or if you prefer to simply discharge clippings out the side of the mower, it might be an issue if you prefer to bag your grass clippings for disposal or to put in your compost pile. If your lawn is not a particularly big one, the small bag should not present too much of a problem for you. But if you do have a rather big lawn, it could be an issue. Some users with larger lawns have found that they had to remove the bag and empty it midway through mowing their lawn, and this is understandably rather inconvenient. The bag can fill up quickly, and when it is filled to capacity, this will negatively affect the performance of the mower.

Of course, when you are shopping for a mower – or any other home and garden product – while looking at user reviews online you are inevitably going to run across someone who was dissatisfied with certain aspects of the product. However most of the issues users had with the CM1836 are not major problems and generally will not affect the user experience too much. This is especially the case if you are purchasing the CM1836 for use in an average sized suburban backyard. This mower is designed for use on a medium sized lawn, and has enough power and capacity to take care of lawns that are slightly above average sized as well. There are no complaints regarding the CM1836’s easy storage, maneuverability and ease of use, quiet running noise, or Energy Star energy efficiency rating. If those features are what you are looking for in a mower, the CM1836 is probably right for you.

Product Comparison

review comparisonOne of the best policies when you are shopping for a new tool is to always do some comparison shopping so that you have a good idea of the different products that are available in a certain market, and buying a lawnmower is no different. It is very useful to compare specific differences across a number of different lawnmowers so that you can ensure you are purchasing the one that is perfect for your needs. You want to know how long the battery life on different models is, what the width of the cutting swath is, how much area different models are able to cover on one fully charged battery, how much different models weigh, and what the different height adjustment options are. So to give you a full picture of what the Black & Decker CM1836 stacks up against comparable models, the following chart compares it with the Worx WG775 and Earthwise 60120.

  black decker cm1836Black & Decker
CM1836
worx wg775Worx
WG775
earthwise 60120 Earthwise
60120
Dimensions 37.5 x 15.5 x 21.5 inches 26.8 x 16.1 x 13.2 inches 39.8 x 22.8 x 35.7 inches
Power 36V Integrated Battery
(Inc. 1 battery)
24V Removable Battery
(Inc. 1 battery)
24V Removable Battery
(Inc. 1 battery)
Charge Time 12 Hours to 100% 5 Hours to 100% 15 Hours to 100%
Deck Size (cutting swath) 18-inch 14-inch 20-inch
Mulch/Bag/Discharge Rear bag (mulching insert and side discharge chute sold separately) Mulch, bag, and discharge Mulch, bag, and discharge
Cutting Area up to 1/3 acre up to 1/4 acre up to 1/3 acre
Runtime charge (conditions may vary) up to 45 minutes up to 30 minutes up to 45 minutes
Drive System Manual Push Manual Push Manual Push
Starter Handle pull Key + Push button Key + Push button
Height Adjustment One point (single lever adjusts all four wheels simultaneously) Handle (6 positions) Single lever (7 positions)
Height Settings 1-1/2- to 3-1/2-inch 1-4/5- to 3-1/3-inch 1-1/2- to 3-3/4-inch
Wheel Size 7-inch front / 8-inch rear 6.5-inch front / 6.5-inch rear 7-inch front / 9-1/2 inch rear
Weight 64 pounds 32.2 pounds 92 pounds
Warranty 2 years 2 years 2 years

As you can see, the Black & Decker CM1836 has the most powerful battery of the three models, boasting a 36 volt battery, while the Worx WG775 and the Earthwise 60120 have less powerful batteries, at only 24 volts. The CM1836 has an integrated battery, while the Worx and Earthwise mowers have removable batteries. The Earthwise mower has the widest cutting swath, at 20 inches, and the CM1836 mower has the second widest, at 16 inches, with the Worx mower bringing up the rear at 14 inches. The Earthwise mower and CM1836 have the longest run times, at 45 minutes, while the Worx mower has a run time of only 30 minutes. The Worx mower is fully charged after only five hours; the CM1836 is fully charged after 12 hours, and the Earthwise mower takes 15 hours to charge. The CM1836 splits the difference between the other two mowers in these and other categories, which means that it allows you to compromise between battery power, cutting swath, run times and other areas for a solid and dependable mower.

Conclusion

review conclusionWhen you are shopping for a cordless electric mower, your main concerns are the maneuverability of the mower and whether or not you are going to be able to mow your lawn on a single charge. With a battery that is 50% more powerful than on previous Black & Decker models, the 36 volts the CM1836 provides allows you to use this lawnmower with a high degree of confidence that it is going to get the whole job done in one shot. The CM1836 boasts a battery life of up to 45 minutes and a third of an acre, which is more than enough for most homeowners’ mowing needs. Add that to the ease of maneuvering the CM1836 and you have an all around solid lawnmower for your cutting needs. Beyond that, the CM1836 is designed to be compact for easy storage, and is lightweight enough that almost anyone can use it easily.

Conclusion Pros

  1. At 36 volts, this is one of the more powerful batteries available on the market today.
  2. The CM1836 has five cutting heights between 1-1/2 and 3-1/2 inches, and three grass processing options.
  3. The mower is light weight (at 64 pounds) and has small dimensions that make for easy storage.
  4. The mower has an elegant starting mechanism – turn a key and pull the handle – and several safety features.
  5. The CM1836 is quieter than other models, and it requires less maintenance and upkeep.

Taken by themselves, the pros of the CM1836 are really quite remarkable: A powerful 36 volt, rechargeable battery with enough life to cut an area the size of an NFL football field from one end zone to the thirty yard line, the five cutting heights and three options for grass processing, small enough dimensions and a fold down handle that make it easy to store, an elegant starting mechanism and safety features, and a much quieter motor than other models that requires less maintenance and almost never needs repairs. It is easy to understand why the CM1836 has so many positive user reviews and is one of Black & Decker’s most popular models today.

Conclusion Cons

  1. At only sixteen inches, the cutting width is slimmer than other models.
  2. The integrated battery cannot be removed, and is the only option on this model.
  3. There is no indicator light to tell you when the battery is dying, and battery life is short.
  4. The height adjustment lever is somewhat difficult for some users.
  5. The bag on this model may be too small to complete some larger lawns.

At sixteen inches, the cutting width of the CM1836 does seem a bit small, but it is actually wider than what is available on many other models, and is about average for what is available on the market today. If you are not mowing a particularly large yard, the sixteen inch blade will require a relatively moderate number of passes. The same is more or less true for some of its other drawbacks, such as the battery life and the size of the grass clippings bag: if your yard has about an average sized lawn for most suburban households, this mower will be more than adequate for your needs.

Final Word

The Black & Decker CM1836 is a great lawnmower for the average homeowner who wants a dependable, solid lawnmower to take care of their lawn. The 36 volt battery and 45 minute battery life makes this mower powerful enough to deal with the majority of lawns out there, and the powerful, efficient engine means that even if you have thick, tall grass, the CM1836 should be able to handle it. With its five height adjustments, light weight and safety features, this is a great mower for any family to own. The CM1836 provides a cleaner cut than previous models, and it folds up for easy storage in your garage or tool shed.

In addition to these features, the CM1836 boasts an Energy Star efficiency rating, which means that it is going to efficiently use electric power. This means that not only are you able to avoid having to use a gas powered mower, with all its associated drawbacks – smelly fumes in your garage and on your clothes after you are finished mowing, carbon emissions that are bad for the environment, and the high price of gas – but you are also going to save money over other electric mowers.

The CM1836 has five different cutting heights, which means that even if you have neglected to cut your lawn for a few weeks longer than normal, you do not have to worry about whether you are cutting the grass shorter than the optimal height. This means you will be able to maintain a happy, healthy lawn that retains its luster through the whole summer.

Best Price

review pricesWhen we are buying a new product, it can often be appealing to simply go for the one with the lowest price, but that is almost never the best option. What counts with an electric tool like a battery powered lawnmower is whether it will perform. And with its 36 volt, integrated battery, you can be certain that the Black & Decker CM1836 will do just that. Along with its powerful motor that can tackle thick grass, its compact size and easy maneuverability and storage features, its ease of starting it up and its Energy Star rating, you will find that the CM1836 pays for itself in just a few years of mowing. All in all, this mower is a great deal.

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