a gas cultivator

Electric Cordless Cultivators vs. Gas-Powered: A Comprehensive Comparison

Cultivating your garden is essential for maintaining healthy soil and promoting the growth of your plants. Choosing the right tool for the job can make all the difference, and cultivators come in various forms. Among the popular choices are electric cordless cultivators and gas-powered models. In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of each type, helping you make an informed decision for your gardening needs.

Cultivator VS Rototiller

Just to clear up any confusion- a powered cultivator is the smallest-sized machine used to mix up soil – it is not a tiller – which are much larger and more powerful. I have written an article on the differences between a cultivator and a tiller if you’d like to read it.

Electric cordless cultivators

battery powered cultivator
A battery-powered cultivator

Electric cordless cultivators are powered by rechargeable batteries, making them an eco-friendly option for gardeners looking to reduce their carbon footprint.


  • Environmentally friendly
  • One of the primary benefits of electric cordless cultivators is that they are more environmentally friendly than gas-powered models, as they produce zero emissions during operation (Deng, 2020).
  • Quiet operation
  • Electric cultivators are significantly quieter than their gas-powered counterparts, making them a better choice for residential areas where noise may be a concern.
  • Lightweight and easy to maneuver
  • Cordless electric cultivators are generally lighter and easier to maneuver than gas-powered models, making them a more comfortable choice for those who may struggle with heavier equipment (Osterberg, 2019).
  • Low maintenance
  • Unlike gas-powered cultivators, electric cordless models require less maintenance, as there are no oil changes, spark plug replacements, or air filter cleanings necessary (Deng, 2020).
  • Instant start-up
  • Electric cordless cultivators start up instantly with the push of a button, eliminating the need for pull cords and reducing the risk of injury (Osterberg, 2019).


  • Limited runtime due to battery life
  • A significant drawback of electric cordless cultivators is their limited runtime, as the battery life may not be sufficient for larger or more time-consuming jobs (Deng, 2020).
  • Lower power compared to gas-powered models
  • Electric cordless cultivators often have less power than gas-powered models, making them less suitable for tough or compacted soil (Consumer Reports, 2021).
  • May struggle with larger or tougher jobs
  • Due to their lower power, electric cordless cultivators may struggle with larger gardens or tougher tasks, such as breaking up heavily compacted soil or cutting through dense roots (Osterberg, 2019).

Gas-powered cultivators

Cultivator vs Tiller
A gas-powered cultivator

Gas-powered cultivators run on gasoline and offer more power than their electric counterparts, making them a popular choice for larger or more demanding tasks.


  • Higher power and torque for tough jobs
  • Gas-powered cultivators typically provide more power and torque than electric cordless models, making them better suited for challenging tasks and larger gardens.
  • No runtime limitations
  • With a gas-powered cultivator, you can work as long as there is fuel in the tank, which means there are no runtime limitations like those associated with battery-powered models.
  • Suitable for larger gardens and more demanding tasks
  • Gas-powered cultivators are ideal for larger gardens and more demanding tasks, such as breaking up hard, compacted soil or tilling a new garden bed.
  • Wider range of available models and sizes
  • There is a more extensive selection of gas-powered cultivators available on the market, providing gardeners with more options for size, power, and features.


  • Environmental impact due to emissions
  • Gas-powered cultivators produce emissions during operation, which contributes to air pollution and has a negative impact on the environment (Deng, 2020). This can be a significant downside for those who prioritize eco-friendliness in their gardening practices.
  • Louder operation
  • Gas-powered cultivators tend to be much louder than electric cordless models, which can be a nuisance in residential areas or when working for extended periods (Consumer Reports, 2021).
  • Heavier and harder to maneuver
  • Due to their larger engines, gas-powered cultivators are often heavier and more challenging to maneuver than electric cordless models, making them less suitable for individuals who struggle with heavier equipment (Osterberg, 2019).
  • Higher maintenance requirements
  • Gas-powered cultivators require more maintenance than electric cordless models, as they need regular oil changes, spark plug replacements, and air filter cleanings to keep them running smoothly (Deng, 2020).
  • Starting process can be more difficult
  • Starting a gas-powered cultivator often involves a pull cord, which can be difficult for some users, and increases the risk of injury compared to the instant start-up of electric cordless models (Osterberg, 2019).

Factors to consider when choosing a cultivator

When deciding between an electric cordless cultivator and a gas-powered model, consider the following factors:

1. Size of your garden or yard

If you have a small to medium-sized garden, an electric cordless cultivator may be sufficient for your needs. However, for larger gardens or more extensive landscaping projects, a gas-powered cultivator might be a better choice due to its higher power and lack of runtime limitations.

2. Type of soil and vegetation

Consider the type of soil and vegetation in your garden. Electric cordless cultivators may struggle with hard, compacted soil or dense roots, while gas-powered models are better equipped to handle such conditions.

3. Frequency and duration of use

Think about how often and for how long you’ll be using the cultivator. If you only need it for occasional use, an electric cordless model may be sufficient. However, if you require frequent or extended use, a gas-powered cultivator may be more appropriate.

4. Environmental impact and personal preferences

Consider your personal preferences and the environmental impact of your choice. If you prioritize eco-friendliness, an electric cordless cultivator may be the better option. However, if power and performance are more critical to you, a gas-powered model may be more suitable (Consumer Reports, 2021).

5. Budget and available models

Lastly, consider your budget and the models available in your area. Prices for electric cordless and gas-powered cultivators can vary significantly, so make sure to compare features and specifications to find the best option within your budget.


In summary, both electric cordless and gas-powered cultivators have their pros and cons. Electric cordless models are eco-friendly, quiet, lightweight, low-maintenance, and easy to start, but they have limited runtime and power. Gas-powered cultivators offer more power and no runtime limitations but come with environmental concerns, louder operation, and higher maintenance requirements.

When choosing the right cultivator for your gardening needs, consider factors such as the size of your garden, soil type, frequency and duration of use, environmental impact, and budget. By carefully considering these factors and weighing the pros and cons of each type, you can make an informed decision and select the best cultivator for your unique gardening needs.