Last updated: August 20, 2021

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Lawn edgers ensure a visually flawless and therefore harmonious result in garden maintenance. They are an elementary addition to the well-known lawn mower and indispensable for both hobby gardeners and real garden professionals. Lawn edgers and lawn trimmers work very precisely.

The lawn edge trimmer test 2021 should help you to find the model that best suits you. The wide variety of products ranges from simple hand grass shears to powerful lawn edge trimmers with electric or even petrol engines. You can read about the similarities and differences below.




The most important facts

  • A lawn edger is a garden tool for trimming lawn edges or beds. It allows you to trim parts of your garden that a lawnmower cannot reach.
  • There are hand-operated lawn edgers and motor-operated lawn edgers. The two types differ mainly in handling and design.
  • For the best overall result, we recommend cutting the lawn edges before actually mowing the lawn. To do this, guide your lawn edger evenly along the lawn edge.

The Best Lawn Edger: Our Picks

Lawn edge trimmer: buying and evaluation criteria

When buying a lawn edger, there are some aspects that you should consider beforehand in order to end up choosing the product that suits you best. These aspects include:

In the following, we will therefore go into more detail on the individual criteria:

Type of drive

The type of drive is the most important and at the same time the first point you should think about.

Depending on the size of the area to be cut, you can choose between hand- or battery-powered, electric and petrol-powered lawn edgers.

If you have a small garden or only a few lawn edges, you are well advised to use a hand lawn trimmer. Depending on your needs, you can choose between models with or without a battery.

If you have one or more power sockets in the immediate vicinity of your lawn, an electrically powered lawn edger or lawn edge trimmer are also possible alternatives.

For particularly large areas or working times of one hour or more, as well as for commercial use, the purchase of a lawn edger or lawn edge trimmer with a petrol engine is conceivable. The high power of these models in particular is a decisive argument here.

Cutting system

When it comes to the cutting system, a distinction is made between devices with cutting blades and devices with a string reel.

The string reel wears out much more quickly and also requires more energy than, for example, a cutting blade, but it is also cheaper.

The end result is almost the same with both types, so you do not have to accept any loss of quality when choosing.

Power

This point refers exclusively to motor-driven models. The main factors here are the motor speed and the duration of use, as more powerful devices also require more energy.

If, for example, you want to trim weeds or thicker materials in addition to lawn edges, motors with a high speed (up to 10,000 revolutions per minute) make sense.

However, if you only use your machine for grass and the like, models with lower speeds are also sufficient. These also logically save energy, as significantly less power is needed.

In addition, the endurance of the respective lawn edger is an important factor. Battery-operated devices are suitable for a working time of about 30 to 45 minutes, devices with petrol engines, on the other hand, for one to two hours. Electrically powered models, on the other hand, are not dependent on running time, as they are connected to a permanent power supply.

Cutting width / depth

The cutting width depends on the size of the lawn edger and is typically eight to ten centimetres for smaller devices and 20 to 30 centimetres for larger devices.

To determine the need for the correct cutting width, you can simply measure how large the uncut lawn area is after using your lawn mower. The resulting measurement corresponds to your required cutting width.

For an even cutting depth, models with a guide wheel are recommended, as here you can set the desired measurement via preset cutting steps or continuously.

This ensures an even look, especially on paths and bed edges. However, if you can do without this function, you will have to rely on your sense of proportion.

Equipment

As a rule, various accessories are included in the scope of delivery of your lawn edger. Most often, these are different attachments and handles, or specific accessories relating to the cutting system (e.g. replacement string spool or replacement blades) and the drive type (e.g. replacement battery).

A special feature here is the petrol-powered lawn edgers. Due to their high weight, you should make sure that such models always come with carrying straps. Otherwise, handling may suffer under certain circumstances.

If you have to assemble your device yourself before using it for the first time, the necessary tools should ideally be included. Otherwise, the assembly of your lawn edger can also be carried out by a professional.

Maintenance costs

With increasing use, the blades of your lawn edger will wear and become dull, requiring resharpening.

If you have a model with a thread spool, you will have to retighten the thread frequently before eventually replacing the spool completely.

Lawn edger: Frequently asked questions and answers

We have selected the most important questions about lawn edgers and answered them briefly. After reading this guide, you will know all the aspects of a lawn edger that are worth knowing.

What is a lawn edger?

A lawn edger is a garden tool for trimming lawn edges or beds. It allows you to trim parts of your garden that a lawnmower may not be able to reach or only partially reach.

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Trimmed lawn edges create a harmonious overall look in your green oasis. (Image source: Shalev Cohen / unsplash)

Lawn edgers come in many different designs. These range from small and compact hand lawn trimmers to large models with electric or even combustion engines, which already rival some lawn mowers.

How does a lawn edger work?

The operating principle of a lawn edger depends on its respective design. With mechanical lawn edgers (all hand-operated models without a battery), your own muscle power is the drive. With the help of the respective cutting tool, you shorten or remove the affected areas of your lawn.

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Beds also look more attractive and structured after being trimmed by a lawn edger. (Image source: CDC / unsplash)

With battery-operated and motor-operated lawn edgers and lawn trimmers, the respective drive does this work for you. The cutting tool (blade or thread) is made to vibrate or rotate by the integrated motor and thus independently carries out the cutting process.

Your only task is to guide the device evenly along the working surface.

What types of lawn edgers are there?

Basically, lawn edgers can be divided into two main categories. These are, on the one hand, the hand-operated and, on the other hand, the motorised lawn edgers.

However, both categories can be subdivided into several subcategories, which are described in more detail in the following table:

Hand-operated lawn edgers:

Type Advantages Disadvantages
Rollable lawn edge trimmer easy to use, ergonomic, noise-free, environmentally friendly, low maintenance, easy to clean, inexpensive cutting height not adjustable, very concentrated work required
Hand grass shears without handle compact, noise-free, environmentally friendly, low-maintenance, easy to clean, inexpensive strains the back in the long run, high effort for visually perfect result
Hand grass shears with handle compact, ergonomic, noise-free, environmentally friendly, low-maintenance, easy to clean, inexpensive accuracy suffers due to spatial distance from cutting tool
Hand grass shears with battery compact, no risk of tripping due to cable, maximum flexibility, versatile, can be extended with telescopic handle (ergonomic), easy to maintain, quiet short running time, low power (compared to motor-driven devices), relatively long processing time

Motor-driven lawn edgers:

Type Advantages Disadvantages
Electrically powered lawn edgers enduring, powerful, cutting width and height are adjustable, convenient and uncomplicated use, relatively inexpensive risk of tripping due to cables, permanent power supply required, high energy demand, noisy, maintenance-intensive (for models with thread reel), difficult storage
Petrol-powered lawn edgers enduring, powerful, uniform cutting result, ergonomic polluting, very loud, difficult storage

How do I use a lawn edger?

For the best overall result, we recommend cutting the lawn edges before actually mowing the lawn. This way, the cut blades of grass can be picked up later by the lawn mower and unnecessary extra work can be avoided.

Regardless of the design of your lawn edger, you now guide it evenly along the lawn edge.

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When using your lawn edger, the appropriate protective equipment must not be missing. (Image source: Boris Debusscher / unsplash)

To pre-cut your lawn edges, first set a higher measurement to protect the cutting element and minimise its wear.

In the second pass, you can trim your lawn edges to the desired length. This method significantly extends the life of your lawn edger.

Last but not least, safety plays an important role when using a lawn edger. Therefore, you should wear protective goggles during the entire use of the lawn edger to protect your eyes from injuries caused by lawn cuttings.

If you are using a powered lawn edger, it is also advisable to wear hearing protection (especially with internal combustion engines), as the noise levels can easily exceed 100 decibels. Gardening gloves and safety shoes are also a sensible addition.

How do I care for a lawn edger?

You should clean your lawn edger after every use. Particularly when used in damp lawns, some grass clippings usually remain on the underside of the tool. It is best to remove this with a stiff brush.

For general maintenance of your lawn edger, we also advise you to clean all screws and joints regularly and to oil the latter. Otherwise, especially the guards of your machine should be firmly mounted.

If you choose a lawn edger with battery operation, the battery must not be exposed to frost. It should therefore be stored in a dry and, above all, frost-free place, especially in winter. To maximise the service life, the battery should not be charged to more than 85% of its capacity.

In the case of a model with a combustion engine, it is also essential to use the prescribed fuel and the appropriate oil. The ratio of these two components also plays an important role. You can find this information in the instruction manual of your lawn edger.

Conclusion

A lawn edger makes a significant contribution to the well-kept appearance of your garden. Due to its precise operation, it is one of the elementary tools of every hobby gardener. In general, you have the choice between hand-operated lawn edgers and motor-operated lawn edgers.

Motorised lawn edgers with electric or petrol motors are more powerful and are particularly suitable for larger areas or even for commercial use. Once you have found out which lawn edger suits you best, there is nothing to stop you beautifying your garden.

Image source: 123rf / 38970363

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