A Better Way to Care For Your Yard

What you should know about gas-powered yard equipment: Gas Pollutes…

  • 1 hour gas mower usage equals driving 300 miles
  • 1 hour gas leaf blower use equals driving 1,100 miles
  • Gas leaf blowers are inordinately large emitters of CO, NOx, HC and PM, therefore contributing to greenhouse gases and climate change
  • A 2011 test by car experts at Edmonds showed that consumer-grade gas leaf blowers emit more pollutants than a 6,200 pound 2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor
  • By 2020, ozone-contributing pollutants from small off-road engines (inc. gas yard equipment) will exceed those from cars
  • Gardeners who operate gas yard equipment are exposed to carcinogenic exhaust fumes daily from direct release of tailpipe emissions

Noise from gas equipment is harmful to hearing…

  • Gas-powered mowers and blowers range from 80-100+ decibels; a jet take off is 100 decibels
  • Gas blowers measuring 70-75 decibels at 50 feet can reach 90-100 decibels at the operator’s ear and to those nearby
  • Exposure to 80-92 decibels for two hours can cause hearing damage
  • Gas leaf blowers are damaging to plants…
  • Leaf blowers operate at 170 MPH – hurricane force winds – disruptive to plants and biota
  • Blowers erode beneficial mulch and bark around trees and landscaping and stir up allergens, mold and dust contributing to allergies

A Better Way: Electric Yard Care Equipment

  • No on-site point-of-use pollution; electric generated at power plants equipped with scrubbers to filter out pollutants
  • Noise is considerably less; measured in Curtis Park at 55 decibels
  • Electric equipment is much improved, new high tech batteries are used rather than plug-in cords.

The City of Sacramento Noise Ordinance specifies that:

  • Gas-powered leaf blowers may only operate from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday thru Saturday and 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Sundays
  • Noises levels may not exceed 65 decibels at a distance of 50 feet; most gas powered equipment exceeds this level but there is no current enforcement

Interested in Clean & Quiet Yard Care? Here’s what you can do:

  • Ask your yard care provider to use electric equipment
    Find an existing provider that works with electric yard care equipment
  • Purchase your own electric equipment for your provider or yourself to use
  • Pool $ resources with your neighbors for joint use electric equipment by you or your providers
  • Ask your provider to use a manual mower and rake by hand (studies show no significant difference in time efficiency)
  • Let your yard care provider know that gas-powered equipment is harmful to their health (both hearing and lungs)
  • Add your name to our list of concerned Curtis Park neighbors – join our email list –>

Statewide Advocacy Resources

Electrical Equipment Distributors & Demos

Para continuar con el contacto con paisajistas de habla hispana, comuníquese con Nury Enciso (nuryenciso@gmail.com)

Sources: California Air Resources Board; Noise Free America; Washington Post 9/16/13; Earth911.com; Michael Benjamin, CARB via NPR 2/28/17; Hal Thomas phone noise meter; City of Sac Noise Ordinance for Lawn Equipment; Citizens For A Quieter Sacramento