Sun MJ401C Review: Is It Efficient?

Sun MJ401C

Gardening Freaks Rating:-
8.8/10
Pros
  • cordless type
  • lightweight and compact
  • LED battery indicator
  • extremely quiet
Cons
  • short Li-ion battery life
  • struggles with thick grasses

The Sun Joe MJ401C looks like a kid’s plaything, but make no mistake—this mower is compact and cordless, built to give great cutting quality for small yards. It is powered by a 28V Li-ion rechargeable battery that can last for 20-25 minutes.

Sun Joe is the alternative to the well-loved Snow Joe that makes outdoor power tools used in winter. Sun Joe has a line of lawnmowers that are electric, and this guarantees the company’s drive towards manufacturing eco-friendly products. They offer free shipping and a 2-year warranty on all their products. Their tagline Go with Joe is a well-known phrase for people who love the build of their many tools in the market.

This cordless lawnmower is low maintenance and easy to manoeuvre, looking almost like a toy but decently built as a trim mower for small yards.

Sun MJ401C Review

compact and cordless mover with great cutting quality

The Sun Joe MJ401C looks like a kid’s plaything, but make no mistake—this mower is compact and cordless, built to give great cutting quality for small yards.

Performance and Cut Quality

The Sun Joe MJ401C push lawnmower is equipped with a motor powered by a 28V rechargeable Lithium-ion battery that warrants a long-lasting shelf life for this product. A single charge can handle nonstop mowing operation of up to 25 minutes or a total area of 0.2 acres.

I’ve tested mine and was able to observe about 30 minutes of run time which was enough to cover my lawn. The battery powers up a brushless motor with a maximum speed of 3000 RPM; considerably efficient for something so compact and lithe.

The machine’s 25V rating efficiently mows through dry grass on flat terrain, and the cut is professional-looking. However, think twice before using this on wet grass. I had the nasty experience of doing the cut-and-charge cycle for days because I tried it on grass that has been rained on. It was downright unpleasant since the battery kept running out after only a few minutes. Charging time takes up to 4 hours—it’s so frustrating to wait that long until you can finish the whole yard.

This little toy-like mower can handle weeds even if it doesn’t look like it. It’s a solid product that can take on hills or contoured terrain because it is lightweight, and also has a 14-inch sharp blade that cuts decently. This is a good secondary mower or a trim mower for homes with small yards like mine.

The cutting ability might not be much in terms of length, but the blade swaths grass with the precision that is great for corners and closed quarters. I do an overlapping to be sure that I get the maximum coverage with little to no uneven cuts. However, would tend to increase blade speed when mowing through taller grasses, using up some of the charges faster.

Ease of Use

The Sun Joe MJ401C is a cordless type, and that alone offers convenience that corded mowers do not have. There is no need to mind if the cord is long enough to cover the entire lawn, or if it gets unplugged from the power outlet. Cords are also a reason for accidental slips while mowing, so having that out of the way is a safety measure in itself.

What I also like about it is that its battery-powered motor is so quiet that it doesn’t sound too heavy on the ears unless the machine revs up. Moreover, it’s easy to push because it is lightweight and compact. The design is comparable to that of a toy car with little wheels so it’s actually almost fun to use this product.

The blades also contribute to its ease of use. It can handle edges quite well, which is something you cannot find in mowers with the bulky front. I made no real effort of pushing and pivoting this mower because it does not feel like a task whenever I mow with it.

I’m really satisfied with how easy this product is user-friendly and easy to operate with just a push of a button minus having to deal with fatigue or sore arms after a good mowing session.

Special Features

The Sun Joe MJ401C 28V 14-Inch cordless push mower is powered with the rechargeable and nonremovable Lithium-ion battery. It is rated at 4Ah, which means that it could last long after a full charge if used on a well-kept lawn. There is a LED battery indicator included. It’s definitely an upgraded version of the MJ401E due to its cordless feature, which makes for a convenient and safe mowing experience.

The total weight of this unit is only an amazing 23.1 pounds. It is ultralight and also compact. Additionally, it is environment-friendly and user-friendly, which I think are two important parameters in choosing the right mower.

The mower is adjustable with three levels of height adjustment. This is perfect for adjusting according to your height. It is an ergonomic feature that I find very useful since I am short and need a mower that can be adjusted to fit my size and make my body comfortable while mowing.

The blade is sharpened initially and is corrosion-resistant; the blade is made of high- quality steel to prevent water from doing its damage on the surface of the blade. The blade is 14 inches, long enough to cover a wide path when mowing.

This model has a safety key that is to be inserted for when you want to use the lawn. This is a very significant feature perfect for people who have kids because it can protect against accidental starts.

Design

The unit is preassembled as soon as you take it out of the box, and you can use it after charging the battery initially. I had a mixed reaction when I lifted the unit since it did look like a toy on all angles. Its exterior is made of plastic and is coloured bright, fun green. The wheels are also flimsy-looking but can easily roll through the terrain. I can’t vouch for durability, but it certainly has a unique charm that I haven’t seen in other brands yet.

The deck is wide, although not as much if you consider the 21-inch steel decks of other models. It does not mean the cutting quality is lessened, though. The 14-inch steel blade does not require a lot of charges to be operated, so it works to enhance battery life.

I can’t help but repeat the fact that this design is ultralight weight and compact with a dimension of only 61.5 x 21 x 16.5 inches. It is only 23.1 pounds, which in mower measurement is almost as light as a feather. I’ve had experience pushing big mowers of about 80lbs, so this is definitely a positive aspect I am satisfied with.

Cost Effectiveness

This cordless push mower from Sun Joe is priced at around $150, which is a steal if you are a beginner and want an initial lawnmower that is fuss-free and does not empty your pocket drastically. For it’s cutting quality and ease of use, paying that much for a unit is quite justified.

However, I’m still a bit worried about its durability, if I may be frank. The plastic parts of the mower just do not make me at ease, so I am always careful around obstacles or bends because I do not want to damage the plastic edges. With that said, I think that it could make me end up going to pay for a repair or replacement if I’m not too careful while using it.

Grass Collection and Discharge

As with its other brothers, this mower does not have a mulching ability, and I am deeply saddened by this fact. This would have been a great entry level cordless push mower if it only had a mulching option or even an optional mulching blade to be purchased so I can do the discharge option I like the most.

What it has is a bagging ability that uses a detachable 1.1-Bushel bag that I can say is durable upon testing it. If you are mowing a small lawn, this bag is the perfect size for a grass catcher. It is big enough to accommodate grass clippings for a ¼ of an acre. Like the description says, the grass bag does attach and detach easily from the rear and is covered so you don’t need to deal with stray grass cuttings.

There is also no side discharge option, but it’s not that big a deal for me as much as the lack of mulching option is.

Manoeuvrability

Manoeuvring the unit is not a heavy chore, thanks to its weight and the compact design. Turning around corners or changing path is very easy and smooth as long as you are cutting through a dry lawn. You don’t need to find a self-propelled model because the MJ401C can be pushed with little effort and strength to move.

You’ll also be pleased like I was with how easy it is to swath on edges and other hard-to-reach areas. You can take this mower and pass it over close quarters and it would still deliver great cutting quality.

One more thing that improves its manoeuvrability is the cordless feature. No need to look behind for kinks on the cord or if you have to dodge the power wire to avoid potential damage; you just go mow whichever part you want to mow and not care about the cord being plugged out of the power socket.

Maintenance

I’m all for low maintenance models, and the Sun Joe MJ401C is as low maintenance as can be. Since it is cordless and battery-powered, you can forget worrying whether you put oil or gas in, or if the oil-to-air mix is just right for the engine to work. You don’t need to schedule tune-ups regularly; all the technical maintenance requirements are nonexistent in electric models.

What you do need to keep in mind is to take care of the battery so that it’s lifespan would be longer than the manufacturer’s suggestion. Typically, you can charge Li-ion batteries for about 1000 cycles until you have to worry about replacement, but if you do not abuse the battery pack then you can use it for longer. Just remember not to store the unit with an empty charge.

The blades would stay sharped if not abused as well. You can sharpen it once a year to maintain an excellent cut. Also, clean the underside of the mower after every use to avoid accumulating grass clippings on that area—this would decrease cut quality. You can also opt to replace the blade if you observe that the blade isn’t performing as well as before.

What’s in the Box?

The box contains one unit of Sun Joe 25V MJ401C cordless electric mower. It is preassembled so you just have to take it out the box and charge the battery initially for around 4 hours before using it. The box also contains an AC charger and a wrench for replacing the blade.

The unit has all the necessary parts for operation installed with it, including the Instant Start lever and safety switch, safety key insert, 14-inch steel blade, grass indicator window, adjustable handle, height adjustment lever, and wheels.

The unit also comes with a grass bag for catching grass clippings and an instruction manual for a reference regarding its operation and maintenance.

Pros: Things We Love!​

  • Cordless type
  • Has a safety key for security
  • Grass bag is easy to clip and remove
  • Lightweight and compact
  • 3 Levels of cutting height adjustment
  • LED battery indicator
  • Corrosion-resistant steel blade
  • Extremely quiet

Cons: Points of Improvement

  • Short Li-ion battery life
  • Struggles with thick grasses
  • Some parts are built with plastic

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How heavy is the mower?

A: The Sun Joe iON16LM is only 23 pounds and is compact in size for easy manoeuvring.

Q: Can this handle all types of grasses?

A: According to the manufacturer, it cannot handle tough grass types, but it does decent cuts on weedy lawns.

Q: How long does the battery last?

A: The Sun Joe MJ401C’s battery pack can power up the motor for a maximum of 25 minutes until it needs another cycle of charging.

Q: Can it mulch?

A: Sadly, this unit lacks the mulching option. The MJ401C is a bagging-only mower, which means that it also does not have the side discharge function.