Black & Decker CM1936 Review

Black & Decker CM1936

11110.5
(Rated: 4.3 / 5) Review by Frank Lowery
Noise11111
Ease of Assembly11110.5
Maneuverability11110
Balance And Handling11110.5
Cut Quality1110.50

Taking care of your lawn to keep it healthy and lustrous takes a lot of effort, and therefore you want to minimize the amount of work you put into mowing it. The Black & Decker CM1936 is a great lawnmower that significantly reduces the time and energy you will spend mowing your lawn. It has a motor that is extremely efficient and quite powerful for an electric mower, and a nineteen inch deck size, which means it will cut your lawn in fewer passes than smaller models can. The battery on the CM1936 can cut a lawn that is up to 1/3 of an acre on just one charge, which means you will have all of the advantages to using an electric mower but not have to deal with the inconvenience of bothering with extension cords.

The CM1936 has the added advantage of providing a removable battery, which is ideal if you plan on using it to cut lawns that are larger than 1/3 of an acre. Using an electric mower like the CM1936 means you will not have to deal with the aggravation of risking a shoulder injury from pulling a heavy starter cord, and your clothes will not wind up full of gasoline fumes after you have mowed your lawn.

Review Summary

review summaryThe Black & Decker CM1936 provides a number of distinct improvements over gas powered lawn mowers. In the first place, you do not have to deal with filling the gas tank, priming the engine, and then pull a heavy starter cord until the lawnmower starts up. To start the CM1936, you simply have to insert and turn a key and then pull on the starter handle, and you are ready to go. Second, there is no reason to store smelly gasoline cans or messy oil cans in your garage, because the CM1936 runs on a 36 volt, rechargeable, removable battery. The battery has an Energy Star rating, which means it is designed to use electricity very efficiently. That’s good for the environment and great for your wallet. Using an electric mower with a battery has the benefit of doing away with the need for extension cords, which inevitably become tangled messes, no matter how carefully you wind them up.

The CM1936 has a 36 volt battery that can cut up to 1600 square yards on a single charge – that’s more area than three NBA basketball courts, and more than enough for most people’s backyard lawns. But the CM1936 has a removable battery, so if you do have a yard that is larger than 1600 square yards, simply pop out one battery when it runs out of charge, and insert a fresh one to finish the job. Switching batteries takes less than five minutes, and before you know it you’re back to mowing. The removable battery also means that you can charge it away from the mower, so if you do not have outdoor power outlets, you can bring it indoors to charge.

The CM1936 is a powerfully built, highly efficient mower with a nineteen inch deck width which means you can cut your lawn in fewer passes than with a smaller model. Cutting in fewer passes means the lawnmower will save you time and work, both of which mean you will be saving money. In addition to the fact that the CM1936 runs much more quietly than gas powered mowers, the wider deck width will let you mow your lawn in a short amount of time and at any time of day without worrying about whether you are annoying your neighbors.

Specifications

review specificationsThe CM1936 comes with a removable 36 volt battery that, along with the powerful motor, can provide enough charge to mow up to 1/3 of an acre. Users with larger properties can purchase additional batteries for longer runtimes. It has easy to use, single point adjustment that permits you to change the height of all four wheels with a single lever. The mower can be adjusted to one of five different heights and ranging from 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 inches. The front wheels are seven inches in diameter, and the rear wheels are nine inches in diameter. With a single pass the CM1936 can cut through some of the densest grass out there. Because the blade is 19 inches wide, you won’t have to make as many passes as you would with a smaller mower. The easy starting mechanism is a basic two step process: all you have to do is turn the key and pull a start handle. Grass processing includes a rear bag only, although a side discharge chute and mulching insert can be purchased separately. The handle folds down for easy, compact storage

Dimensions 36.2 x 18.5 x 22.7 inches
Power 36V Removable Battery (Inc. 1 battery)
Charge Time 12 Hours to 100%
Deck Size
(cutting swath)
19-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 touch (single lever adjusts all four wheels simultaneously)
Height Settings 1-1/2- to 3-1/2-inch
Wheel Size 7-inch front / 9-inch rear
Weight 72 pounds
Warranty 2 years

Mowing your lawn just got a whole lot easier. From the simple key and handle pull starter mechanism, to the powerful motor and removable battery, to the nineteen inch deck size, the CM1936 makes mowing your lawn a breeze. Because the CM1936 is not gas powered, it produces zero harmful carbon emissions, does not fill your yard with fumes, has no fuel costs, very little need for upkeep and repairs, and there is no need to store smelly gasoline cans in your garage. Add that to the fact that the handle folds down for easy storage in your garage or tool shed, and you will see that the CM1936 makes the chore of cutting the grass downright hassle free.

Description

review descriptionThe Black & Decker CM1936 is a battery powered electric lawn mower with removable batteries. This eliminates any and all issues with having to deal with long, bulky extension cords. Extension cords always seem to get tangled up, regardless of how carefully you put them away. They are heavy and bulky, and can get pulled out of the socket when you are all the way on the other side of your yard. With extension cords, you have to be careful not to trip over them or run over them with the lawnmower. The CM1936 runs on a 36 volt, rechargeable, removable battery that holds enough charge to mow for up to 45 minutes and cover an area of 1/3 of an acre. The battery is Energy Star rated, which means it is on the cutting edge of the market in terms of energy use. This means you will save hundreds of dollars a gas powered mower would force you to spend on fuel costs and maintenance each year, and because electric mowers produce zero emissions, you will be significantly cutting back on the amount of pollution your household is responsible for producing. The EPA estimates that over one million tons of air polluting emissions are produced by gas mowers ever year, so you will be doing your part for the environment by using an electric mower.

The CM1936 is one of Black & Decker’s largest battery powered electric lawnmowers, which means it is a significant improvement over older models. The battery on the CM1936 is 50% more powerful than older Black & Decker models, which means it can cover a significantly larger area and keep its charge longer. The fact that the battery is removable means that if your property size is larger than 1600 square yards, you can still cut all of the grass in one shot – all you have to do is switch out one battery for a fresh one. This process is simple – the battery easily lifts out of the mower – and it takes less than five minutes.

Due to the fact that the CM1936 is an incredibly quiet lawnmower, you can use it without worrying about annoying your neighbors, which means you can get started early in the day, before the summer weather gets uncomfortably hot. Then you will have the rest of the morning and afternoon free for relaxing in your yard and enjoying your freshly mown lawn – before your neighbors are even out in their yards, getting their mowers out.

The Black & Decker CM1936 is powerful enough to cut through thick, tall grass even if you have not gotten around to mowing it in a few weeks, and a fully charged battery holds enough charge for cutting over 1600 square yards, or about 1/3 of an acre. That is enough to let most property owners cut both their front and back yards using just one battery. The cutting height of the mower ranges from 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 inches, so you can get precisely the right height to give your grass a healthy cut, and all four wheels are easily adjusted with just one lever. The simple startup mechanism has an easy to use two step process: first you insert and turn the starting key and then grasp and pull the start handle closed. That’s it! This is obviously a lot easier to use than priming the engine and then tugging on a heavy pull cord in a gas mower.

The CM1936 only provides one grass processing option out of the box: a rear bagging system. If you would prefer to opt for a side discharge for the clippings, or would like the option of mulching clippings into the lawn, you will need to buy these components separately.

You can fold down the handle on the CM1936, so that you can store it in compact spaces more easily. In addition to this feature, the mower’s dimensions are compact enough that you can store it in tight spaces in your garage, under your work bench in your tool shed, or even store it upright. The dimensions of the CM1936 make it one of the most trouble free mowers to store. This is perfect if like most homeowners you have limited space in your garage. The CM1936 assembles in just a few minutes after you take it out of the box, and Black & Decker provides a two year limited warranty that includes the rear bag assembly, mulch plate, safety key, 36 volt battery pack, and battery charger.

Pros

review prosWhen you are shopping for a lawnmower there are a number of factors you have to keep in mind. An electric lawnmower has quite a few advantages over a gas powered lawnmower. With an electric mower, you will not have to buy gas and keep it in your garage. Electric mowers are better for the environment and easier on your wallet in the long run. And electric mowers run more quietly than gas powered lawnmowers. But different electric lawnmower models each have certain drawbacks as well, so it is important to shop around in order to be certain you are buying the right lawnmower for your needs. The CM1936 is one of the more powerful cordless lawnmowers available on the market today, and it boasts a 36 volt, removable batter that can keep a charge long enough to mow up to 1600 square yards and run the mower for up to 45 minutes in one shot.

  1. 36 Volts Rechargeable, Removable Battery Pack : The 36 volt battery on the CM1936 is one of the most powerful ones on the market, and combined with the efficiency of the engine, it will hold a charge for up to 45 minutes and cut up to 1600 square feet on a single, fully charged battery. That is the equivalent to 3 1/3 NBA basketball courts. That’s a lot of ground, and more than enough for the average homeowner. But if you do happen to have a large enough property that one battery will not be able to cover all of it, not to worry: the CM1936 has a removable battery pack, which means you can replace the battery in the middle of the job. The battery lifts out of the mower with little effort, and swapping out one battery for another takes less than five minutes.
  2. Easy Adjustment Between 5 Height Settings : The CM1936 has five height settings ranging from 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 inches. Lawn care experts recommend that you never cut your grass shorter than a third of its overall height in one cutting, because cutting below that height can do a lot of damage to the grass, leaving it weakened and more susceptible to disease and drought. The wide range of height options means you can always cut your lawn in the most healthful manner, and even if you neglect to mow your lawn for a few weeks, you can adjust the height setting to take care of tall grass. All four of the lawnmower’s wheels are easily adjusted with a single lever, which means that changing the height of the CM1936 is a breeze.
  3. Light Weight and Small Dmensions for Easy Storage : The mower only weighs 72 pounds with the battery inserted, which makes it much easier to maneuver than larger, heavier mowers. That means you will not have to worry about repetitive stress injuries in your wrists or shoulders, let alone back strain, while you are using the CM1936. And unlike some lawnmowers, you do not have to be big and burly to use this one. The mower is light enough that even people with slight frames can use it with ease. Furthermore, the CM1936 has small dimensions – at 36.2 x 18.5 x 22.7 inches, it isn’t so big that it’s difficult to store easily. Combine that with the machine’s convenient fold down handle, and you will find it is very easy to store compactly, which means it will not be taking up too much space in your garage or tool shed. 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. This can be a major concern for serious gardeners who have a lot of tools and not a lot of space.
  4. Simple Starting Mechanism and Thoughtful Safety Features : The CM1936 has an easy to use starting system. Unlike the hassle of starting a gas powered mower, which often will not start up the first time even after you have primed the engine and pulled the start cord several times, the CM1936 only needs a key to be inserted and turned. Then, upon pulling the starting handle closed, the CM1936 starts up reliably every time. You will be amazed at how much more work gas powered mowers are, just in terms of getting them to start up. In addition, the CM1936 has safety features, such as guards that prevent stones from being flung out from under the deck while it is operating, and a child proof safety key, which will prevent young children from accidentally starting the mower and injuring themselves. In addition, the mowing deck has a built in wider side area, which keeps the blade away from the edge of the deck and possibly taking down flowers or injuring your feet.
  5. Quiet Operation and Low Maintenance : The CM1936 is much quieter than other Black & Decker models, in particular the CM1000. And of course the CM1936 is much quieter than any gas powered mower you could ever buy. The quiet nature of the lawnmower means you will be able to mow your lawn as soon as the sun rises and you won’t have to worry about whether you are annoying your neighbors. Because the CM1936 is battery powered, you will not have to deal with the hassle of using tangled up, heavy extension cords, and it is much more low maintenance than gas powered mowers. Beyond sharpening the blade about once a year, the really isn’t much of any maintenance to speak of. You will never have to change spark plugs or oil, clean out air filters in the engine, buy gasoline, or prime the engine. You won’t ever have smelly gasoline cans taking up space in your garage, and your yard will only smell like freshly cut grass, instead of engine fumes, after you are done mowing the lawn.

Black & Decker offers a two year limited warranty on the CM1936 that also covers the rear bag assembly, mulch plate, safety key, 36 volt battery pack, and battery charger. The mower will certainly outlive its warranty, however: while the mower is small, it is also very tough, and the battery pack is strong enough to power the blade through thick grass such as St. Augustine or Bermuda grass every week for many years to come. The battery pack can be fully charged in just twelve hours, and if you purchase extra batteries, you can be sure that you will never run out of charge. Because the CM1936 is so quiet, so low maintenance, and so lightweight and compact, you will never have problems using or storing it, and you will find that you are very happy with your purchase.

Cons

review consNow I would be remiss if I did not also discuss the drawbacks that the CM1936 has if it is compared to other mowers. There are many battery powered lawnmowers available on the market today, and every one of them offers a slightly different set of features than the others, such as the deck width, height adjustments, battery life, and grass handling options. You have to figure out which of these features are most important to you in order to determine which lawnmower is best suited to meet your needs. Do you want a self-propelled lawnmower that you do not have to push around your lawn? Do you want a bigger mower, with a wide deck size, so that you don’t have to make as many passes as with smaller mowers? Do you want an integrated battery or removable battery packs? At the end of the day, a wise shopper will determine exactly which areas are most important to them, and which areas they are willing to let slide, so that they find a mower that is just right for their needs.

  1. Deck Size is Narrow Compared to Other Models : The cutting width of the Black & Decker CM1936 is only nineteen inches wide, which places it right about in the middle of the range for deck sizes on push mowers. This is not a problem if you do not have a particularly large lawn, or if you need to maneuver the lawnmower down walkways and around bushes and trees on your property that are close together. But it also means that you will have to make more passes than you would with a lawnmower that has a larger deck size, and that will take more time. If you have a very large lawn, making lots of passes can significantly increase the amount of time you take to mow it, which is a rather major drawback.
  2. Only 1 Option for Grass Handling Included : Other Black & Decker models, such as the CM1836, come with up to three options for grass handling as part of the initial purchase package. The CM1936, on the other hand, only presents one option in the initial price: the rear bag. Of course, this is not a problem if you are only interested in bagging your grass clippings to dispose of or put in your compost pile. But if you want to discharge clippings out the side of the mower or mulch them into your lawn, these components have to be purchased separately. This acts as a kind of hidden cost to the overall purchase price of the CM1936, and you should keep it in mind when you are shopping around for different models.
  3. Battery Duration is Shorter than Other Models, Battery can Struggle with Thicker Lawns : The battery pack on the CM1936 lasts up to 45 minutes and has enough charge to allow you to mow up to 1600 square yards. While this is typically enough to satisfactorily mow most suburban front and back yards on a single charge, some users have complained that the 36 volt battery is not powerful and loses its charge too quickly. This is especially true for property owners with particularly thick lawns, who have complained that mowing thick patches draws heavily on the battery, even if they had the blade adjusted to the highest setting. Some have resorted to using an additional battery. In addition to this the CM1936 does not have a battery charge indicator, so users can’t tell how much juice is left in the battery pack. This can occasionally result in having the battery run out in the middle of cutting the lawn, which is obviously a drawback.
  4. There is No Self-Propulsion Mechanism : There have been a few complaints that the lack of self propulsion is a bit of a problem. These are almost always made by older users or those with smaller frames, who find pushing any mower, regardless of its size, to be physically demanding and problematic. At the same time, most of these users have also been quick to point out that this drawback is not as bad as having to deal with the noise and smell of using a gas powered mower, or that the much lower purchase price of the CM1936 as compared to electric self-propelled models was enough to convince them to buy it anyway.
  5. Deck is Significantly Wider than the Blade : As an added safety precaution, the mower’s deck is wider than the mower’s blade. This means that you have to overlap the wheels several inches from one row to the next, whereas mowers with a tighter space between the edge of the blade and the edge of the deck simply allow the user to turn from one row to the next. While this may seem like a minor problem, if you are used to simply getting to the end of the row and tracking the next one by following a wheel mark, you may find the extended deck to be a bit of an annoyance.

Of course, it’s worth noting that nothing can ever please everyone, and this is particularly true in the case of tools. When you are shopping for any home or garden product, including lawnmowers, you will inevitably find user reviews online that are dissatisfied with one or another aspect of the product. But the majority of problems users have cited with the CM1936 are either relatively minor or due to personal preferences, as opposed to being a result of design or structural problems. There are no user complaints regarding the CM1936’s Energy Star efficiency rating, ease of use, quiet running noise levels, or compact storage. If you are looking for a lawnmower to use in an average sized backyard, and you are strong enough to use a push mower and either want to only use a rear bag (or do not mind purchasing other grass handling implements separately), then the CM1936 is probably a very good mower for you.

Product Comparison

review comparisonIt is always a very good practice to do some comparison shopping when you are shopping for a new tool. This way you will have a good picture of the various products that are available so that you can choose the one that is best for your needs. Shopping for a lawnmower is no different than any other tool and it is a really good idea to compare certain attributes across several different brands or models so you know you are getting the right one for you. It is important to know how powerful the batteries on different models are, what the size of the deck width is, how large of an area different models are able to cover on one fully charged battery, and what the grass handling and height adjustment levels are. In order to give you a good idea of how the Black & Decker CM1936 stacks up against other models, I prepared a comparison chart for the CM1936, the Toro 20360, and the Black & Decker SPCM1936.

  black decker cm1936Black & Decker
CM1936
toro 20360Toro
20360
black decker spcm1936
Black & Decker
SPCM1936
Dimensions 36.2 x 18.5 x 22.7 inches 56.7 x 21.5 x 38.9 inches 36.6 x 22.9 x 20.5 inches
Power 36V Removable Battery
(Inc. 1 battery)
36V Removable Battery
(Inc. 1 battery)
36V Removable Battery
(Inc. 1 battery)
Charge Time 12 Hours to 100% 15 Hours to 100% 4 Hours to 60%
12 Hours to 100%
Deck Size (cutting swath) 19-inch 20-inch 19-inch
Mulch/Bag/Discharge Rear bag (mulching insert and side discharge chute sold separately) Mulch and bag Rear bag (mulching insert and side discharge chute sold separately)
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 45 minutes up to 45 minutes
Drive System Manual Push Manual Push Self-Propelled Motor
(Pace setter)
Starter Handle pull Push Button Key + Push button
Height Adjustment One touch (single lever adjusts all four wheels simultaneously) Each wheel (8 positions) One touch (single lever adjusts all four wheels simultaneously)
Height Settings 1-1/2- to 3-1/2-inch 1- to 4-inch 1-1/2- to 3-1/2-inch
Wheel Size 7-inch front / 9-inch rear 7-inch front / 8-inch rear 7-inch front / 9-inch rear
Weight 72 pounds 77 pounds 90 pounds
Warranty 2 years 2 years 2 years

As you can see, all three models have equally powerful batteries, although the Toro’s batteries take fifteen hours to charge fully, as opposed to twelve hours for either of the Black & Decker models. The Toro provides a mulching insert with the initial purchase price, while both Black & Decker models require you to buy it separately. While all of the models boast a 45 minute run time, the CM1936 and SPCM1936 can cut up to 1/3 of an acre on one charge, while the Toro can only cut 1/4 of an acre. Each of the wheels on the Toro has to have their height adjusted separately, while the Black & Decker lawnmowers both use a one touch adjustment lever. The CM1936 is the lightest of the three models, at 72 pounds, while the Toro weighs 77 pounds and the SPCM1936 weighs a full 90 pounds, although the weight is offset by the fact that it is the only mower that is self propelled. The Toro has a twenty inch cutting swath, while both the CM1936 and SPCM1936 have nineteen inch cutting swaths.

Conclusion

review conclusionWhen you are trying to find the right cordless electric lawnmower for you, your main points to consider are how easy it is to use the mower and whether or not a fully charged battery is going to be able to cut your entire lawn on one shot. With a battery that is 50% more powerful than earlier models, the Black & Decker CM1936 provides enough power to give you a high degree of confidence in its ability to finish the whole job in one shot. However, if you have a lawn that is larger than the predicted 1/3 of an acre that the CM1936 can cover on one battery, the removable battery pack means that you will be able to swap out a used battery for a fresh one. This is easy to do and can get you back to finishing up the job in a matter of minutes.

Conclusion Pros

  1. The mower boasts a powerful 36 volt, removable, rechargeable battery pack.
  2. The CM1936 has five cutting heights between 1-1/2 and 3-1/2 inches that are easily adjusted.
  3. The mower is light weight (at 72pounds) and has small dimensions, so it is easy to store.
  4. The mower has a simple starting mechanism and great safety features.
  5. The CM1936 is quieter than other models, and it requires less maintenance and upkeep.

Examined individually, the pros the CM1936 provides are really something: a sturdy 36 volt, rechargeable, removable battery that is strong enough to cut an area the size of 3 1/3 NBA basketball courts; five cutting heights that are easily adjusted with one lever; light weight and small dimensions, with a fold down handle that makes it easy to store in compact spaces; a simple starter mechanism and great safety features; and an extremely quiet motor that is very low maintenance and needs very little upkeep. It isn’t hard to figure out why the Black & Decker CM1936 is one of the most popular models on the market today, or why it has dozens of five star user reviews.

Conclusion Cons

  1. At only nineteen inches, the cutting width is not as wide as other models.
  2. The rear bag is the only grass handling option included in the initial price.
  3. Battery duration is shorter than other models; battery can struggle with thicker lawns.
  4. The fact that it is not self propelled can be difficult for some users.
  5. The extra space between the edge of the deck and the cutting blade can be problematic.

At nineteen inches, the width of the CM1936’s cutting swath is on the smaller side, although it is actually wider than what many models offer, and it is more or less in the mid-range of deck sizes. If you are not mowing a huge lawn that requires many passes, the nineteen inch blade will be fine for your needs. The same thing can be said for most of its other drawbacks, with perhaps the only exception being the fact that the only grass handling option that is included is the rear bag. This will force you to buy additional parts if you want to mulch your grass clippings or shoot them out the side of the mower.

Final Word

The Black & Decker CM1936 is an excellent option for the average property owner who wants a dependable, robust mower for their lawn care needs. The 36 volt, removable, rechargeable battery means that it will be strong enough to deal with the vast majority of lawns in suburban America, and the fact that you can swap out batteries in the middle of the job means that you will never run out of power, regardless of how big your lawn is. With its five height adjustments, compact dimensions and light weight, this is a great mower for any family to buy.

In addition to these aspects, the CM1936 carries an Energy Star efficiency rating, which means it is going to use much less electricity than models that do not have this rating. The Energy Star rating means that not only are you going to say goodbye to all the problems associated with a gas powered mower, like smelly gas cans in your garage, fumes in your clothing and your yard after you are done cutting the grass, and polluting emissions that harm the environment, you will also be saving money and cutting down on your electric bill.

The CM1836 boasts five cutting heights that are easily changed with a one touch lever, which means you will always be able to cut your lawn at an optimal height to make sure your grass is at its healthiest possible state, and will stay fresh and verdant all summer long.

Best Price

review pricesOf course, it is always tempting to simply buy the cheapest available product in order to save money up front. But this is almost always a bad idea. Money that you save up front by purchasing a cheaper model will inevitably be reflected in poor craftsmanship or shoddy parts, and in the long run, buying a cheap product will cost you more money in the long run. It is always better to spend a little more to make sure you are getting a product that is well made and backed up by a company that has a good reputation and solid background. The Black & Decker CM1936 is just such a product: it is not too expensive, but it is not made of cheap materials, so you will be certain it will work for you for many years.

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