I was really excited to try out the LawnMaster VBRM16 which is an affordable boundary wireless robotic mower that has a surprising number of features given the price. What I love about the LawnMaster VBRM16 is that you could almost consider it a hybrid between a robot and a traditional cordless lawn mower.
What do I mean by this? Well, unlike most robotic mowers, this one isn’t designed to be left outside all the time. It’s a drop and go machine which can be charged indoors and then you simply need to pop it on the ground and let it do its thing. There are many advantages to this which I’ll dive into in my LawnMaster VBRM16 review.
I have also done a video review of the LawnMaster VBRM16 which includes a detailed rundown of its performance and, as you will see, the excellent results on my front lawn. Again, for such an affordable piece of equipment, I was pleasantly surprised.
The LawnMaster VBRM16 is a robot mower that is simple in its design and operation but doesn’t scrimp on performance. If you’re looking for something that won’t break the bank and will be a cinch to setup and use, then this is a mower I would highly recommend.
- 16cm cutting width suitable for lawns up to 100m²
- 5 cutting heights between 20mm and 60mm
- Easy to use control panel
- 1 hour charge time
- Up to 4 hours running time
- 24v 4.0Ah battery and charger included
- Camera navigation
- No need for boundary wire
LawnMaster VBRM16 Capabilities
The LawnMaster VBRM16 doesn’t cost the earth at around £350 (£279.99 if purchased bare tool with no battery or charger). This is ten times cheaper than some of the more advanced boundary wireless robot mowers that use things like GPS and RTK technology. While these are great, it has surprised me how much the LawnMaster VBRM16 can do without having to break the bank.
Lawn Area Cover
As you will see in my YouTube video, I tested the LawnMaster VBRM16 on my front lawn which is around 100 square metres; the perfect size for this mower.
It’s designed to cut up to 100m² and has a 16cm cutting width. Combine this with the four hour run time, which I’ll talk more about shortly, and you’ve got something that’s going to deliver an even cut without running out of power.
However, if you have a slightly larger lawn then the LawnMaster VBRM16 might not be suitable (you could always purchase an additional battery). But for those of you that are keen to stick with the brand then you might try the LawnMaster L10 which has a slightly larger 18cm cutting deck, however, it does require a charge station and the boundary wire to be installed around the lawn.
My front garden doesn’t have any slopes, but there are lawns all over the UK that do. If this sounds like your garden then you’ll be pleased to know that the LawnMaster VBRM16 can handle inclines up to 35%. This is comparable to the range of Flymo and WORX robotic mowers.
Charge and Mow Time
One of the things that a lot of people ask me about robotic lawn mowers is whether they have enough power to complete the entire lawn in one go.
The great thing about the LawnMaster VBRM16 is that the manufacturer has carefully combined the blade width and run time to ensure the mower covers up to 100 square metres in one go.
As I mentioned, I tried this machine out on my 100m² front lawn and within three hours, it had as good as completed the entire thing with power to spare. Typically, you’ll get around four hours out of a single charge, but this does depend on the conditions such as whether there are any slopes or how bumpy the ground is.
Charging your LawnMaster VBRM16 takes barely any time at all. Simply attach it to the charger, plug it in and it’ll be ready in around one hour!
As I discussed earlier, some of the more expensive robotic lawn mowers use GPS and RTK to navigate. However, the LawnMaster VBRM16 benefits from a camera and two sensors located at the front of the machine which enables it to ‘see’ the lawn and move around objects or stop at the edge.
I found that, when testing the LawnMaster VBRM16, it detected the perimeter of my lawn very easily and would stop and turn in good time. However, my front lawn, as you will see in the video review, does have well defined boundaries.
You really need your flat edges to be well defined and at least 35cm or you’ll need to put raised beds in place that are at least 6cm in order for the mower to detect them. If your garden is already set up like this then that’s great, you won’t need to do anything. However, if your edges are not well defined then the downside is that you may need to make some adjustments.
In terms of how well the sensors and camera detect obstacles, I tested this by placing a WORX robot mower in the centre of my lawn. As the LawnMaster VBRM16 made its approach, it quickly detected the object and turned to mow in another direction.
If you’re a fan of LawnMaster then you’ll be pleased to hear that the LawnMaster VBRM16 comes with a 24v 4.0Ah battery that is part of the MX24 range and can be power shared with other tools in this range. These tools include lawnmowers, hedge trimmer, grass trimmers, chain saws & leaf blowers.
The battery, as I mentioned, is quick to charge and once it’s ready, can be easily slotted into the back of the LawnMaster VBRM16. Turn the safety key and close the lid and you’re ready to go. It’s really simple.
One of the things that makes the LawnMaster VBRM16 stand out is that it doesn’t come with a charging station. Most robot lawn mowers have a docking station that has to be set up somewhere in the garden and connected to a power source. If you don’t have somewhere for this equipment, then it may mean that you couldn’t have a robotic lawn mower.
But since the LawnMaster VBRM16 doesn’t require this, it opens up this technology for everyone. The battery is charged using a power socket in the home in the same way you’d charge your cordless mower battery, and you can then drop the mower onto the lawn and let it work its magic.
One of the major benefits to this is that there’s a much lower risk of theft. I know a lot of people worry about leaving an expensive robotic lawn mower outdoors all the time as anyone could just pick it up. While expensive models do have things like alarms and PIN protection, this might not be enough to stop an opportunist. So, being able to watch the mower and then take it indoors is a real plus.
However, the downside to not having a charging station is that the lawn mower won’t automatically return to it. Some more advanced models will return when the battery is low and many have rain sensors so they’ll return when they detect rain. With the LawnMaster VBRM16, you will need to keep an eye on the weather and if the heavens open, you’ll need to go out and bring the mower in.
Control Panel, Setup and App
The beauty of the LawnMaster VBRM16 is that it’s so easy to use. It doesn’t require a smartphone app so it’s perfect if you’re not great with tech and even the control panel on the machine is a breeze to use.
There’s no complicated setup, no need to update software and no need to install a boundary wire. All you need to do is charge the battery, insert it and then press the ‘on’ button and choose your mowing mode. There is an auto-mow or a spot cut mode; just press and hold the button to select your mode and the robot will do the rest.
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LawnMaster VBRM16 Mowing Features
While the LawnMaster VBRM16 is a pretty simple piece of equipment in the scheme of things, it does have a good number of features, especially when you consider the low price. You can see these features in more detail in my video review but let me talk you through them now.
I always check the height adjustment options when choosing a lawn mower because this is something that I feel needs to be versatile. At the beginning of the mowing season, you’ll need to set the mower to a higher height and gradually reduce this; having a greater number of options is imperative to the health of your lawn.
I allowed the lawn in my front garden to grow to around 60mm, despite having given it the first cut of the season the week before testing the LawnMaster VBRM16. For this, I used the 40mm cutting height but there are five options to choose from between 20mm and 60mm which I thought was more than adequate.
It’s also really easy to switch between cutting heights using the dial on the top of the LawnMaster VBRM16.
In the event that the LawnMaster VBRM16 completes the mow but has missed any spots, you can use the spot cut mode to tidy these up.
There’s a button on the control panel which you can press after popping the mower down in whichever area needs touching up. It’ll then use a spiral pattern to trim any longer bits of grass and ensure a uniform finish over the whole lawn.
The LawnMaster VBRM16 cuts in a random pattern. When you turn it on, it’ll start mowing in a forwards direction and will then move around the lawn. When it reaches a boundary or an obstacle, the LawnMaster VBRM16 will turn to cut in another direction.
Given the decent running time, there’s no concern that this random pattern won’t allow for full coverage of the entire lawn. In fact, my lawn was completed in a little over three hours and there weren’t any spots that the LawnMaster VBRM16 missed.
As with all robotic lawn mowers the LawnMaster VBRM16 is a mulching mower. This essentially means that it doesn’t collect the clippings as this simply wouldn’t be feasible with such a compact machine.
Instead, the clippings are chopped up and delivered back to the lawn where they will release nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus. This is brilliant for lawn health and will keep the grass looking lush, dense and green.
LawnMaster VBRM16 Safety Features
While the LawnMaster VBRM16 is a simple robot mower, it does come with a couple of essential safety features that make it a great tool for all homes, even those with children.
Lift and Tilt Sensors
The blades on any lawn mower have the potential to cause a serious injury so I was pleased to see that the LawnMaster VBRM16 comes with a lift and tilt sensor.
What this does is stops the blades should you pick the robot mower up or tilt it. As you can see in my video review, the mower started beeping when I tilted it and, when picking it up off the ground, the blades stopped very quickly which is great in preventing injuries.
One of the things I noticed when I was setting the LawnMaster VBRM16 up was that it comes with a safety key. This is something you normally see with cordless lawn mowers so I felt it was a nice touch. The benefit of this is that you don’t need to worry about any accidental start ups if you have kids. Just take the key out and there’s no way for the mower to be started even if the battery is fitted.
What’s Included In The Box?
- 1 x LawnMaster VBRM16 robotic lawn mower
- 24v battery
- User manual
- Safety Key
- Spare blades
LawnMaster VBRM16 User Guide
LawnMaster VBRM16 Pros and Cons
LawnMaster VBRM16 Video Review
Should You Buy This Model?
If you are someone that doesn’t want the hassle of using a complicated advanced robotic lawn mower, then the LawnMaster VBRM16 will be right up your street. It’s a brilliant entry level robot mower as operation is as good as fool proof. What’s more, it’s incredibly affordable so you won’t need to spend a lot of money to familiarise yourself with this type of technology.
As I have discussed, the LawnMaster VBRM16 is suitable for gardens up to 100 square metres. Any larger than this and you’ll find that this model won’t cover the whole lawn in one go. If this is the case, I would recommend checking out the LawnMaster L10.
For people who want a robot mower that is lightweight (6.6kg) and easy to store, the LawnMaster VBRM16 makes an excellent choice as it’s so compact. What’s more, it comes with a carry handle so moving it around is even easier.
I would also recommend this model for those that don’t have the capacity to install a docking station as the LawnMaster VBRM16 doesn’t require this.
Where Should I Purchase This Robotic Mower?
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- NO BOUNDARY WIRE NEEDED: uses a grass recognition camera and ultrasonic sensors to mow the lawn without the need for a boundary wire, outdoor power socket or app. For use on small lawns up to 100m2 surrounded by hard borders such as gravel, paving, decking, or raised edges such as sleepers and fences. Not suitable for gardens with overhanging plants, undefined flower borders or edges with a drop off. Adjustment of lawn borders may be required. See instructional video for more information.
- DROP AND MOW: No need for an outdoor power socket. Simply charge the detachable lithium-ion battery in the 1 hour fast charger provided and put the mower on the lawn once or twice a week during the day time in dry weather. It will mow in a random pattern for up to 4 hours* and drop small clippings on the lawn to feed the grass.
- SPOT CUT FUNCTION: for a neat finish, use the additional spiral spot cut function on any uncut grass.
- ADJUSTABLE CUTTING HEIGHT: Choose from cutting heights of between 20mm and 60mm for a neat looking lawn. For best performance and to encourage healthy lawn growth use 60mm for longer grass and after regular mowing, gradually reduce the cutting height to your desired length.
- SAFETY: Using the camera and ultrasonic sensors the mower detects and avoids obstacles such as garden furniture. A child safety key prevents unauthorised use, and sensors stop the blade when the mower is lifted.
- PART OF THE MX 24V SHARED BATTERY SYSTEM: Expand your cordless garden power tool collection in a cost effective and environmentally-conscious way with LawnMaster. Every MX 24V 4.0Ah battery and charger is fully compatible with the LawnMaster MX 24V cordless range, including lawnmowers, hedge trimmers, grass trimmers, chainsaws and leaf blowers. This means that you don’t need to buy a new battery and charger every time you buy a new LawnMaster garden power tool.
Last update on 2023-12-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Robotic lawn mowers are becoming ever more popular and in the last few months, boundary wireless models are flying off the shelves. However, the problem is that many of these GPS mowers are incredibly expensive. So, if you’re looking to just test the water, spending all of that money can feel like a no go.
With the LawnMaster VBRM16, you don’t need to blow your life savings to get a robot mower with a fantastic range of features and that does an excellent job of cutting.
I tested the LawnMaster VBRM16 on my front lawn and was really pleased with the results and how well this machine worked. It was simple and easy to use, has a great run time and is overall a well made and impressive piece of garden equipment.
While there were a couple of minor drawbacks such as the lack of a rain sensor and the potential of having to adjust your lawn boundaries, these certainly wouldn’t prevent me from investing in the LawnMaster VBRM16.
Boundary Wireless Robotic Mowers FAQs
Do all robot mowers need boundary wires?
No, new technology means that the boundary wire could soon be a thing of the past. While there are still many robot mowers that use boundary wires, manufacturers are now introducing wireless options which will be available in 2022.
Which brands make robot mowers without a boundary wire?
At the moment, the number of wireless robotic lawn mowers on the market is not large. This is still new technology and, as such, only a few manufacturers have jumped on board so far. These include Husqvarna, Stiga and Mammotion for RTK mowers as well as Segway, Toro and Lawnmaster who make mowers with camera guidance.
How does a boundary wireless robot mower work?
Robot mowers without a wire work in one of two ways. Firstly, there is the Real Time Kinematics system which relies on satellites in a similar, but more advanced way to GPS. Secondly, there are robotic mowers that are fitted with cameras that essentially act as eyes, preventing it from bumping into things or moving out of the mowing zone.
Will my robotic lawn mower cross my driveway?
No, the new boundary wireless robotic lawn mowers are intelligent enough to detect where they are within a 2cm accuracy and determine where they need to go next. This makes it easy for them to stay within the mowing zone.
When were boundary wireless robotic mowers invented?
Boundary wireless robot mowers are still a very new concept and were only introduced to the market last year. In 2023, UK buyers can now purchase and pre-order the latest models.
Why would I want to get rid of a perimeter wire?
One of the main reasons that boundary wireless mowers look set to take the world by storm is they are less maintenance. When you install a boundary wire, there is a risk of it being damaged by things like ground movement, animals and other things. This means regularly adjusting or replacing the wire.
I know there’s a lot to think about when it comes to choosing a robotic lawn mower, but it really is worth taking the time to weigh up your options. If you’re still unsure, I have lots of helpful information throughout this website to make it easier for you. Why not try out my lawn mower selection tool where you can simply enter your requirements and I’ll recommend the best matched mowers for you. Together, we’ll find a great lawn mower for you and your garden!
As a seasoned expert in the field of garden power tools, I have dedicated over a decade to working with and reviewing a wide variety of lawn mowers. My extensive experience has allowed me to gain a deep understanding of the benefits and limitations of different types of mowers and garden tools.
Over the years, I have honed my skills in writing informative articles and creating helpful videos for various blogs and publications. This has given me the ability to not only recognise what makes a good lawn mower, but also to help you choose the perfect garden tool for your specific needs and requirements.
With my wealth of knowledge and expertise, I am confident that I can provide you with valuable insights and recommendations when it comes to selecting the right lawn mower for your lawn. So, whether you're looking for a battery cordless, electric, petrol, or robotic mower, you can trust in my expertise to guide you towards the best option for your garden.