In areas where the grass is not in full view…
…string trimmers can help maintain growth along the edge of the lawn.
String trimmers come in different varieties…
…and other obstacles to maintain clean edges and boundaries around a yard.
For your landscaping needs, this guide offers tips on choosing the best string trimmer…
…also known as a weed eater or weed whacker.
Read on to discover some of the best high-performance, highly reliable…
…and easy-to-use options available on the market.
Before we move on to next section, let’s hear some words from Craig…
The string trimmer I just bought is awesome! I love it!
It can tackle some tough stuff, is much lighter than gas trimmers, and won’t kill your back or neck.
Having a horse ranch led me to buy extra batteries and chargers.
The batteries are carried in my nail apron and changed as necessary.
One battery can last up to an hour depending on how heavy the stuff is that I’m trimming. It’s my second one.
Totally my fault I burned the first one up.
I didn’t blow out the slots where the air goes to the motor.
It had been about 3 years since I had it.
It’s time to get started…
What to Consider When Choosing the Best String Trimmer
Think about a few important factors before deciding on a product…
…including its size and weight, fuel source, battery life, runtime, shaft design, and safety features.
By recognizing these features, you can interpret product specifications…
…and select the best string trimmer to maintain your yard.
Size and Weight
It is important to consider the weight and size of the string trimmer…
…before choosing a product for a long period of time.
While electric string trimmers tend to weigh between 5 and 12 pounds…
…gas trimmers can weigh up to 20 pounds and are considered lightweight.
Electric trimmers are a better choice than heavy-duty gas weed eaters…
…for people who don’t need the power of a gas weed eater.
Generally, the length and shape of the shaft determine the size of the trimmer.
As the shaft of the trimmer gets longer, the range increases, but the weight increases as well…
…making it more difficult to store.
For easy storage and efficient trimming, choose a product with an adjustable shaft length.
Depending on the size of your lawn and the extent of your yard maintenance…
…you can choose between gasoline, electricity, and a rechargeable battery-powered string trimmer.
- A gas-powered model is powerful and, of course, does not require electrical power. With the ability to move freely while using a gas-powered string trimmer, users can maintain control of their tool. Gas-powered trimmers handle long weeds and heavy brush better than electric models. In general, string trimmers are noisy tools, but gas models are the loudest. Gas models are also typically heavier and more expensive than electric models.
- As a rule, electric models are more lightweight and user-friendly than gas models. Corded electric string trimmers can sometimes be difficult to maneuver because the cord can become tangled or limit the tool user’s mobility. Corded electric string trimmers are among the most budget-friendly options available.
- Cordless string trimmers usually cost a bit more than corded models, but they are often easier to maneuver. Batteries must be recharged between each use, and they do not always perform as well as corded models.
Battery Life and Runtime
You can choose between gas, electric, or battery-powered string trimmers.
String trimmers that use batteries have the same mobility as gas trimmers…
…but the user does not have to worry about the weight.
However, they should be concerned about the battery life and the tool’s runtime.
Battery life can be difficult to estimate because there are a number of factors that influence battery efficiency…
…such as temperature, operating speed, and even the type of grass or weeds the trimmer is cutting.
Manufacturers provide runtimes based on tests performed in a controlled environment.
Choose a cordless trimmer with a backup battery, so that one is always charging while the other is in use.
Straight and curved shafts are the two most common designs for string trimmers.
One of these shafts may be more suitable for your use because of its length and functionality.
- Curved-shaft string trimmers are shorter than straight-shaft trimmers because they have an end bend, near the blades. Due to their shorter lengths as well as their light weight, these types of trimmers are comfortable to use.
- The straight-shaft string trimmers allow users to reach farther under shrubbery and around unique landscape elements. Straight-shaft models are generally heavier than curved shaft models.
Feeding and Loading
One of the more challenging aspects of using a string trimmer is feeding and loading.
Cutting grass and weeds requires strength, control, and caution…
…but loading the cutting string requires patience…
…especially if you’re dealing with a dual-line head with two weed eater strings.
If you need to adjust the line, look for products that have an attachment that allows you to detach the head.
Feeding the line involves pulling more line out of the trimmer head.
There are several different feeding methods, including manual feeders, bump feeders, and auto feeders.
- When using a manual feeder, the user stops trimming, loosens the trimmer head, pulls the line manually, then tightens the trimmer head again before continuing to work. This can quickly become an inconvenient process.
- Bump feeders are much easier to use, and they don’t require the user to stop working. Bump the trimmer head on the ground or another hard object to release more trimmer string.
- Auto feeders are the easiest to use. By using centrifugal force, the pre-wound head feeds the trimmer string automatically. Due to the auto-feed feature, the length of the string is constantly self-correcting to the ideal length.
String trimmers are designed specifically for cutting through layers of tough cellulose plant fiber…
…while hitting walls, rocks, and other objects at high speeds.
Consider products with safety features such as debris guards, trigger switches…
…and padded grips to reduce vibrations when handling string trimmers.
- A debris guard is typically a half-circle shell made from protective plastic that sits around the string trimmer head to protect the user from flying grass, dirt, rocks, and other debris. While wearing safety glasses, long pants, and closed-toe shoes, some flying grass might escape even with a guard.
- Using trigger switches prevents the trimmer from being accidentally turned on. The feature locks the trigger unless the switch is held down. When the switch is held down, the trigger can be used normally.
- The trimmer is equipped with padded grips on the shaft and handle to reduce vibrations. A trimmer with continuous and strong vibrations can cause muscle fatigue and strain, but this padding keeps the user’s hands protected and makes gripping the trimmer easier.
Here’s what’s important…
Our Top Picks for String Trimmers
|RYOBI 40-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless Attachment Capable String Trimmer, 4.0 Ah Battery and Charger Inc||Prime||Buy Now|
|WORX WG162 20V Power Share 12" Cordless String Trimmer & Lawn Edger||Prime||Buy Now|
|BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX String Trimmer, 2-Speed, 12-Inch, Cordless (LST522)||Prime||Buy Now|
|Craftsman CMXGTAMD30SA 30cc 4-Cycle 17-Inch Straight Shaft Gas Powered String Trimmer and Brushcutter-Weed Wacker with Attachment Capability for Lawn Care, Liberty Red||Prime||Buy Now|
|Toro 51480 Corded 14-Inch Electric Trimmer/Edger||Prime||Buy Now|
Let’s go through them one by one…
Ryobi’s electric string trimmer offers plenty of power and the convenience of rechargeable batteries…
…that work with over 40 Ryobi tools. It has been my go-to weed eater for over five years…
…and I love that it works with other Ryobi 40 volt batteries; this means I always have one charged and ready to go.
You can also attach other attachments to this tool to make it a blower or pole saw.
The idea of having a single-use tool in my garage is one of my pet peeves, so I always try to avoid it.
Ryobi’s tools are all multi-purpose and work together.
It has variable speed control and adjustable cutting width.
Despite being pricey, it will be the only weed eater tool you will ever need.
- Compatible with other Ryobi tools
- Multiple attachments available
- Variable speed
- Adjustable cutting width
The Worx 12 Inch 20 Volt Grass Trimmer/Edger is one of the best-priced string trimmers on the market.
With this well-priced piece of equipment, you get a weed eater and edger in one.
With a five-pound weight, it is also lightweight and has a rechargeable battery.
The 12-inch cutting width isn’t the largest available, however it will meet the needs of most homeowners.
Given that you get a trimmer and an edger in one tool, the price far outweighs any limitations.
- Combo tool
- Rechargeable battery
- Okay cutting width
Considering its utility and performance, this trimmer and edger tool is a great value.
With its PowerDrive transmission, it can handle even heavy, overgrown weeds and grass.
Although the 12-inch cutting width isn’t particularly impressive…
…it is still adequate for most household trimming and edging tasks.
Trimmers with 6,200 RPM will keep going even when dealing with tough brush.
I look for the ability to use the battery in other BLACK+DECKER products in my electric outdoor tools.
This particular line includes everything from power drills to chainsaws.
- Battery compatible with other BLACK+DECKER products
- 6,200 RPM
- Cutting width is only okay
“The 12-inch trimming radius is small but suitable for keeping the lawn properly maintained without damaging fencing, decks, trees, or other common yard obstacles.”Timothy Dale – Writer
Craftsman 30-cc 4-Cycle 17-Inch Straight Shaft Gas Powered String Trimmer with Attachment Capability
With the Craftsman TrimmerPlus multi-yard tool system, you can make the most out of your yard tools.
Among the attachments separately available are hedge trimmers, brushcutters, polesaws, and garden cultivators.
A combination tool system’s biggest advantage is that once you learn how to use the controls…
…learning how to master the new attachment is quick and easy.
Featuring an impressive 17-inch cutting width, a 4-cycle engine…
…and a simple prime and pull start process, it also works well as a weed wacker.
Furthermore, it is quieter than many gas weed wackers and has an adjustable handle…
…for right-handed or left-handed users.
- Attachments available
- Two-step start
- Required gas and oil
A weed eater with a plug-in cord means that you can run it indefinitely without ever worrying about its battery life.
It also means that you need to be close to an electrical outlet in order to use this power source.
Due to their limited range, plug-in electric weed wackers are generally not the best option…
…but the Toro 51480 Corded 14-Inch Electric Trimmer/Edger is a reliable combination tool at a great price.
Aluminum is used for the telescoping shaft, and the wide cutting width is ideal for almost any job.
- Combination trimmer/edger
- Good cutting width
- Needs to plug in
The type of string trimmer you choose will depend on your specific needs.
String trimmers, also called weed eaters or weed whackers, come in a wide range of sizes, weights, and features.
You should be aware that gas trimmers are good for large yards with dense weed growth…
…electric trimmers are good if you don’t mind the extension cord…
….and cordless trimmers are suitable for smaller yards, though users should always have a spare battery on hand.
Ryobi’s 40-Volt Lithium-Ion Brushless Electric Cordless String Trimmer is our top pick…
…because of its great performance, ease of use, and coordinating line of compatible tools.
Grass trimmers/edgers like the Worx 12 Inch 20 Volt Grass Trimmer are also a great option.
With this lightweight string trimmer, you can tackle just about any weed in your yard…
…while saving your muscles and wallet at the same time.