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The Best Weed Wacker – Overview Chart

Weed-Wacker Choices and Tips
Weed Wacker in actionWeed-wackers (or string trimmers, weed eaters, etc.) are gardening tools that work by rapidly rotating a cord – usually nylon, or monofilament like a fishing line – around an axis to cut in place of a blade. They’re an easy to use and versatile tool. They can cut down or mow through tough weeds, but despite the name, one of their best uses is on grass in areas where lawnmowers can’t reach or aren’t sufficiently precise. There are several different types of weed-wackers, and going in knowing about the options will help choose the one that’s your best fit.

Gas Powered Models

Gasoline-powered weed-wackers are the oldest kind, and have advantages newer innovations don’t have. They’re the most powerful, and can cut brush as opposed to just weeds. They have better mobility than electric wackers that connect to outlets with cords, and can be used over larger yards for the same reason. Gas-powered wackers also have more available features than electric and battery-powered weed-wackers, which don’t put out enough power to support all options. Gas wackers are the most durable type of weed-wacker. However, they’re also the heaviest, noisiest, and require the most maintenance. They tend to run into the tiresome problem of not starting, and need to be oiled frequently lest the motor break down. If you’re dedicated to your landscaping tools and your property sometimes feels like a sprawling untamed wilderness with a mind of its own, you need a gas wacker.

Here are the best gas powered models for 2015

Top 5 Best Gas Weed Wackers 2015

ImagesModelPowerCutting WidthRating
ImagesModelPowerCutting WidthRating
Husqvarna 128DJx 17-Inch 28cc 2-Stroke Gas Powered Straight Shaft String Trimmer/Brush Cutter with Detachable Shaft (CARB Compliant)Husqvarna 128DJx 17-Inch 28cc 2-Stroke Gas Powered Straight Shaft String Trimmer/Brush Cutter with Detachable Shaft (CARB Compliant)28 cc17-inch4.7
HUSQVARNA 128CD 28cc 2 Cycle Gas Powered Line Grass Lawn Trimmer Curved ShaftHUSQVARNA 128CD 28cc 2 Cycle Gas Powered Line Grass Lawn Trimmer Curved Shaft28 cc17-inch4.5
Remington RM2520 Wrangler 17-Inch 25cc 2-Cycle Attachment-Capable Curved Shaft Gas Trimmer with QuickStart TechnologyRemington RM2520 Wrangler 17-Inch 25cc 2-Cycle Attachment-Capable Curved Shaft Gas Trimmer with QuickStart Technology25 cc17-inch4.1
Poulan P4500F 16-Inch Straight Shaft 25cc 2-Cycle Gas Powered TrimmerPoulan P4500F 16-Inch Straight Shaft 25cc 2-Cycle Gas Powered Trimmer25 cc16-Inch3.9
Ryobi RY26520 26cc Straight Gas Lawn Grass Weed Trimmer Ryobi RY26520 26cc Straight Gas Lawn Grass Weed Trimmer - Manufacturer Refurbished26 cc18-inch3.9

 

Electric Corded Models

Compared to gas-powered weed-wackers, electric wackers are more lightweight, less expensive, and much quieter compared to the sputter and roar of a gas-powered engine. They don’t release noxious fumes, which can irritate breathing, and don’t require the maintenance gas trimmers do. But since they must be connected to an outlet, you can only use your tool as far as the cable will extend. Electric wackers also pack less of a punch than gas wackers. If you have a small lawn and just want a trimmer you can leave in a corner of your garage until you want to take it out for cosmetic work, an electric corded wacker is ideal for you.

Here are the best electric (corded) models for 2015

Top 5 Best Electric Weed Wackers 2015 (corded)

ImagesModelPowerCutting WidthRating
ImagesModelPowerCutting WidthRating
Toro 51480 Corded 14-Inch Electric Trimmer - EdgerToro 51480 Corded 14-Inch Electric Trimmer/Edger5.0-Amp14-inch4.0
Black & Decker LE750 Edge Hog 2-1/4 HP Electric Landscape EdgerBlack & Decker LE750 Edge Hog 2-1/4 HP Electric Landscape Edger11-Amp7.5-Inch controllable depth4.3
GreenWorks 21142 10 Amp 18-Inch Corded Top Mount String TrimmerGreenWorks 21142 10 Amp 18-Inch Corded Top Mount String Trimmer10-Amp18-inch3.9
WORX WG118 15-Inch Wheeled Electric Grass Trimmer/Edger, 6.0 AmpWORX WG118 15-Inch Wheeled Electric Grass Trimmer/Edger, 6.0 Amp6.0-Amp15-inch3.8
GreenWorks 21272 5.5 Amp 15-Inch Corded String TrimmerGreenWorks 21272 5.5 Amp 15-Inch Corded String Trimmer5.5-amp15-inch3.9

 

Cordless Electric Models

Like electric wackers, cordless trimmers are quieter than gas engines. They’re considered less troublesome than either gas-powered or electric weed-wackers, since you neither have to haul them around and cajole them into starting nor wrestle with a cumbersome pull cord. These wackers have the greatest maneuverability. They don’t involve messing with gas or oil. Like electric trimmers, they’re lightweight and quiet. Unlike corded electric trimmers, once they run out of power, they need to be returned to the charger. Charging battery-powered electric wackers takes a couple of hours. To get it down to half an hour, you need to invest in a “fast charger.” A really good power cell will give you a bit more than an hour of use. Most of the market ranges between half an hour and an hour. However, that’s time in continuous use. Since it isn’t gas-powered, you can flick off a cordless trimmer when you’re walking across your yard. Good cordless trimmers are also more expensive than either other option – and who wants a bad cordless device? More versatile than the other two types, cordless trimmers are best for light maintenance on large yards if you can afford the short-term investment.

Here are the best cordless electric models for 2015

Top 5 Best Cordless Electric Weed Wackers 2015

ImagesModelPowerCutting WidthRating
ImagesModelPowerCutting WidthRating
WORX WG156 Li-Ion Cordless Grass Trimmer/Edger with 2 20-volt Batteries and Manual Handle, 10-Inch WORX WG156 Li-Ion Cordless Grass Trimmer/Edger with 2 20-volt Batteries and Manual Handle, 10-Inch2 x 20-Volt Lithium-Ion10-Inch4,4
Toro 51487 24-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless String Trimmer,12-InchToro 51487 24-Volt Lithium-Ion Cordless String Trimmer,12-Inch24-Volt Lithium-Ion12-inch4.1
Black & Decker LCC420 String Trimmer and Sweeper Lithium Ion Combo Kit, 20-volt Black & Decker LCC420 String Trimmer and Sweeper Lithium Ion Combo Kit,220-Volt Lithium-Ion10-inch4.1
WORX WG190 Lithium Cordless Grass Trimmer and Edger, 48-voltWORX WG190 Lithium Cordless Grass Trimmer and Edger, 48-volt48-Volt Lithium-Ion13-inch4.1
GreenWorks 21242 G-MAX 40V Li-Ion Cordless String Trimmer with 4ah Li-Ion Battery and Charger Inc.GreenWorks 21242 G-MAX 40V Li-Ion Cordless String Trimmer with 4ah Li-Ion Battery and Charger Inc.40-Volt Lithium-Ion13-inch3.8

 

Emission Considerations

Besides use, different weed-wackers have different waste concerns. The emissions put out by a gas-powered weed-wacker are significant. Comparatively, the lithium batteries that power cordless wackers or the addition to your electricity use caused by electric wackers are both better options for the environment. Neither of these options are “clean,” but they still represent the best options for the Earth on the common market, short of crawling around your lawn with a pair of scissors and a sun hat.

Extra Features

On top of the base model, some weed-wackers have extra features. Obviously, these increase price, but since a weed-wacker may have a capability you would find useful or would have had to purchase another tool for anyway, it’s wise to know some possible features before hitting the market. String trimmers are divided between manual thread extension or the capability to extend thread with a button without putting down the device. Various other special features are often applied to the cutting end of the tool: In some the cutting string can be replaced with blades; in others the entire hub is interchangeable, and can be swapped out to convert the weed-wacker into a powered pole saw, cultivator, or hedge trimmer designed for use higher from the ground.

How to Use a Weed Wacker

The best way to use a weed-wacker is to hold it away from you, then walk forward while sweeping the wacker in a side-to-side motion. Rocks and debris wear down the cutting thread, so move them out of the way. Similar precautions should be kept in mind regarding walls and fences. It’s time to pull out more thread when weeds aren’t being cut down on the first sweep. Also of note is that string trimmers are only meant to cut to about two inches from the ground. Lower than that, you’re wasting cutting cord on your ground, and sadly, the ground will probably be unmoved.

Like with any moderate manual labor, it can be surprising how the repetitive motions can come back to get you. So when using a string trimmer it’s best to pay attention to any strain, especially on your back. Shifting your hold now and then can stop most problems before they start, but gardeners tend to get understandably caught up in the rush of subjugating the line of their lawn.

Safety

Weed-wackers are power tools, and toss things around, so wear close-toed shoes and durable pants. Observe the precautions that apply to all outdoor work: Stay hydrated, and mind the risk of heatstroke working in direct sun. You should wear safety glasses to protect your eyes from flying debris the tool may throw up, and just to make the task easier. Like swimming, weed-whacking is possible without goggles, but more fun if you can see what you’re doing. With gas trimmers, wear earplugs or muffs. Gloves are recommended just because gripping the wacker can be rough on the hands. And finally, bring a spool of extra cord. After picking the best tool for the job, you don’t want to run out of cutting cord just when you’re getting in the jam.

 

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