Greenworks 14in Cordless Dethatcher and Scarifier review

It'll scratch and scrape the earth

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier viewed head on during testing
(Image: © Future)

Top Ten Reviews Verdict

While the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier easily fits together, the instructions were difficult to follow, and the handlebar feels flimsy when it's in use. It does a good job of removing moss and thatch from the lawn surface, yet while the collector bag does collect some debris, it is only suitable for smaller backyards or places where there isn't a dense thatch.

Pros

  • +

    Easily fits together

  • +

    Compact enough to easily store

  • +

    Does a good job of removing moss from the lawn

Cons

  • -

    Instructions could be clearer

  • -

    Handle feels flimsy

  • -

    Small collector volume

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The Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier is a lawn care tool that you're going to want to consider this year. It's a bold statement, I know, but after recently moving into a (total) reno with a yard in a similar state of affairs, its capabilities became clear after the first use.

As with the best lawn mowers and electric lawn mowers at that, I tried out all the available (and possible) features on the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier for a few turns around our yard. From the delivery and set-up to dethatching and scarifying, this yard tool was put through its paces. I liked that it wasn't corded or gas-powered and how easy it was to use. The collector bag quickly filled, though, which became a nuisance since I had to keep stopping and starting to empty it. It's not the most robust lawn tool I've used, either, with a flimsy handlebar and small wheels.

It was useful for removing knitted dead grass from around the fresh green shoots, as well as loosening moss from the topsoil. As you can imagine, our lawn was a state. I used it in the fall of last year (2023) and plan to use it again when we can start to mow the lawn again in spring.

Jennifer Oksien
Jennifer Oksien

Jennifer Oksien (Jen) is the editor of Top Ten Reviews. She has tested and reviewed a number of yard tools in her time, all with very different specs and list prices, so she knows what to look for.


The Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier was the first yard tool of this type for Jen to try out. She tested it in her 1500sq.ft backyard, which has the challenges of uneven ground and dense thatch. Jen used this yard tool a few times in late fall 2023 and intends to use it again once we're past the risk of frost.

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier: Key specs

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Model no.DT40B510
Voltage40V
Collector volume11 gallon
Height adjustments5 (-12, -8, -5, 0, +5mm)
Cutting width14in
Dimensions25.5 x 19.4 x 17.12in
Weight11.1kg

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier: price & availability

The Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier is available to buy in the US and UK and has a list price of $311.99 / £219.99. It can be bought either directly from Greenworks or from resellers such as Amazon (US), Best Buy (US), or Amazon (UK).

You could save $90 by opting for the tool only. This means that you don't get the 5Ah USB Battery and Rapid Charger included. A reason for going for tool-only is only really if you already have a Greenworks tool, so it is best to check that you have access to a battery and charger. If you don't have this, I'd advise buying everything you need at the same time.

While it has good availability in the States and UK, the price is pretty steep - especially when not on offer, and when compared to competitors. You can even find lawn mowers more affordable than this, so the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier could be deemed as a non-essential if you're only buying "essential" tools.

Score: 3.5/5

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier: Set up

My very first impression of the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier was the size of its delivery box. It was much smaller than I thought it would be.

Unboxing it, it was evident that a lot had been packed into a small space. I noted that plastic bags and cardboard inserts had been used to secure and protect the lawn care product; in my opinion, too much plastic had been used. 

Then, there were the assembly instructions, which I found challenging to understand. I don't do too well with anything remotely flat-packed or screwing any bolts on. Thankfully, there weren't too many components to fit together, so I could just about figure it out on my own.

One noticeable impression I had was that the handlebar was flimsy. It didn't feel strong enough to push the tool forward, let alone Louvre and/or adjust. It also felt quite low, even after adjusting; I'm 5ft 8, and it felt like my back was stooped when gauging how to move it all forward.

It comes with a rake cassette (suitable for dethatching) and a scarifier cassette (suitable for scarifying). Both of these are razor sharp, so always have a pair of gardening gloves to hand to avoid any accidents. These seemed easy to switch between depending on the yard task (scarifying or dethatching), but those gloves are a must.

The review unit I had on the test also came with the 5Ah USB Battery and Rapid Charger. The removable battery can power 60+ Greenworks tools, and the specs say that it has a runtime of 45 minutes. I fully charged it before first use to test this and all the other features.

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier: Design

The design of the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier looks something like a miniature lawn mower, just not as robust with fewer buttons, dials, and levers. 

It measures 25.5 x 19.4 x 17.12 and weighs 11.1kg. It comes with an 11-gallon Collector Bag, which attaches to the rear of the Dethatcher / Scarifier.

The handlebar folds to make for easy storage, but there is no cover, which I feel could do with owning to the frequency of use that this tool will have throughout the year; it's advised to only use it in late fall and early spring. While the handlebar is not height adjusting, the cutting height has a central lever to switch between -12, -8, -5, 0, and +5mm. This is the only adjusting that can be done when you're either dethatching or scarifying.

Depending on the task you're performing (dethatching or scarifying), you can switch between the rake cassette and the scarifier cassette. The rake cassette has 24 (very) sharp, stainless-steel spring tines to combe the thatch, whereas the scarifier cassette uses 20 (equally sharp) knife-like blades to cut through the soil in aid of aerating the soil. Heavy-duty gardening gloves are a must when switching between these cassettes — it was only when unwrapping the rake cassette from plastic cellophane that I learned how sharp those blades were.

It has a cutting width of 14 inches, regardless of the cassette in use, which makes it ideal for small to medium-sized lawns. Often, the larger the cutting width, the larger the yard.

The rechargeable, interchangeable 5Ah USB Battery lives under the hood, and switching it on / off is all done by pulling back the lever on the handlebar.

Score: 4/5

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier being tested in writer's home

(Image credit: Future)

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier: Performance

I used the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier a few times to scarify our tired lawn in fall 2023. While this cassette is better used for aerating, it can also be used to remove moss, dead grass clippings, and other debris that can inhibit growth, which makes it a good all-rounder. The dethatcher element, on the other hand, won't aerate, but it'll do everything else that the scarifier does.

I found that the scarifier cassette had already been installed in our review unit, whereas the rake cassette was separately wrapped in cellophane.

It took a few hours to fully charge the 5Ah USB Battery before first use, and with this full charge, there was ample time to work around our 1500 ft yard. The battery is expected to last up to 45 minutes, and it took just 13 minutes for me to walk around the yard scarifying, so there were a couple of extra rounds of juice left in the battery.

The scarifier cassette sliced into our lawn with ease, but I found that the 11-gallon collection bag quickly became full. This probably says more about the state of our lawn (it was a state), but I would have expected the thatch to be more compacted than a fluffy heap in a bag.

I switched between the cutting heights (-12, -8, -5, 0, and +5mm) and found that our uneven ground was best suited to a cutting height of -5. The central lever had some resistance, so you'll need some strength behind you to switch between the heights if you need to.

In use, there was some movement with the handlebar, although I had to tighten the bolts up as much as possible. It didn't feel as robust as I was hoping/needed, and it felt really rickety over the mountainous terrain (our uneven yard). And, then, after use a rake was required to remove any excess thatch that the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier had loosened. This took longer than actually using the tool, and it would have been good if the tool had saved me this job because, ultimately, it gave me another task to do.

Please note: I have not tested the rake cassette, but I will be at the time of the first mow (not long now). This yard tool is seasonal and can only be used in late fall or early spring. At the time of review, it was on the cusp of the first frost, so I opted to wait until warmer weather arrived to take it for a trip around our yard. I'll update this review when the grass starts to grow and recover again.

Being battery-powered, it was quiet in operation. I measured 64dB when in use, which is equivalent to the noise level of a normal conversation.

The maintenance of the Greenworks 40V 2-in-1 dethatcher and scarifier is dead easy. All I needed to do was to ensure that the Collector bag was emptied and the battery was removed to charge. If storing, the handlebar folds, and the battery is to be removed to safeguard from frost.

Score: 3.5/5

Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier: User reviews

The Greenworks 40V Dethatcher is receiving high praise from customers on Amazon due to its performance, ease of assembly, and value. Users find it to be a time and effort-saver, appreciating its lightweight design and maneuverability. The dethatcher is particularly well-liked for its effectiveness in maintaining yards. One 67-year-old woman found it an excellent tool for her multi-level yard.

Customers also appreciate the inclusion of extra tines and the ease of charging the battery. However, some users have raised concerns regarding the battery life and recharge time. Some find the battery life to be shorter than expected and the recharge time to be longer than desirable. 

Should you buy the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier?

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Score card
AttributeNotesScore
Price & availabilityIt's widely available in the US and UK but even as a tool-only, demands a high ticket price compared to others available. ★★★½
DesignLooks like a miniture lawn mower. Doesn't feel as robust as one, though, and the Collector bag is small.★★★★
PerformanceDoes the job, although I'd prefer to not empty the Collector bag so often - or have to use the rake.★★★½

Buy it if...

You've never thatched your lawn before

A build-up of moss and thatched lawn could harm the overall health of the yard, so a dethatcher (or scarify) will only do good things.

You have a small to medium-sized yard

The battery will last for 45 minutes, which I found was ample enough for a trip around our 1500.ft yard.

Don't buy it if...

You need something robust

The Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier is all plastic and feels flimsy. Those with larger yards may prefer something more robust.

Your lawn is already green and healthy

If you regularly mow and clear the dead grass from each cut, it would be better to save your money than buy this non-essential yard tool.

How does the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier compare?

If you've never thatched your lawn before and have a larger yard, then consider the WEN DT1516 16-Inch 15-Amp 2-in-1 Electric Dethatcher and Scarifier with Collection Bag. It has a 16in mouth, rather than 14in, and it's almost half the price than the Greenworks tool we have here on review with a list price of $154.

The LawnMaster GVB1316 Electric 16” 13 Amp Dethatcher and Scarifier with 12 Gallon Collection Bag is another one to consider, not only because it is way cheaper than the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier at $159.99 but also because it has a larger collection bag which is something I got bothered about when on test.

Prefer a corded model? We found that the Sun Joe AJ801E Electric Lawn Dethatcher was good for smaller yards, especially considering the 13-inch cutting width and small 8-gallon bag.

How I tested the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier

I used the Greenworks 40V 14in Cordless Dethatcher / Scarifier to scarify our uneven, overgrown, and knitted lawn in our backyard. It had a total of three trips around the 1500 sqft space, all in late fall.

From the delivery to set-up and using the scarifier, I adjusted the cutting heights to see which would be best suited to our lawn (-5) and stored it over winter. It's going to be making an appearance again to aerate our boggy front lawn, but only when the risk of frost fades, all in the name of a healthy, greener lawn.

Read more about how we test.

First reviewed: October 2023
Written: February 2024

Jennifer Oksien
Editor

Jennifer Oksien is the Editor of Top Ten Reviews. Jennifer (Jen) has over a decade of experience as a digital product writer specialising in appliances, smart tech and mattresses for some of the UKs leading retailers and magazine titles such as TechRadar, Real Homes and Ideal Home. Generally, you’ll find her watching the latest Netflix series, digging around in the garden or making a cake.