For people who need to prune and trim greenery regularly, there’s nothing quite as handy as a good hedge trimmer. Hedge trimmers have been around for a long time now, but they have gotten more efficient and safer to use as the years have gone by.
Best Hedge Trimmer (January 2020)
Ultimately, they are still much more convenient and speedy to use than simple shears or cutters.
Best Runner-Up: A Worthy Contender
Hedge Trimmers: A Buyer’s Guide For 2020
In this buyer’s guide, we will be taking a look at everything you need to know about buying a hedge trimmer. We’ll also run through a few frequently asked questions you may well be asking during the shopping process. Surely all hedge trimmers do the same thing? Not always. Let’s take a closer look.
Do You Need a Hedge Trimmer?
It is firstly a good idea to ask yourself whether you need a trimmer or not. If you only have a few bushes to clip, you may prefer the safety and precision of a manual tool. However, you may be surprised to learn just how precise hedge trimmers can be these days.
Buying a hedge trimmer is a very good idea if you have a lot of greenery or vegetation to cut down regularly. Fast-growing hedges and bushes can be a nightmare to take care of during the summer, especially if you only have a small pair of shears to hand. It can be a lot of work! However, hedge trimmers can really cut that work down to size.
Things to Consider
As with all garden tools, there are probably going to be a few factors which impact on the tools and accessories you wish to buy. It’s going to depend largely on the work you need to do, as well as how often you need to do it. Let’s take a look at some of the variables which can impact your choice of hedge trimmer.
Corded or Cordless
While corded hedge trimmers have a lot more manoeuvrability in their design these days, cordless models may be of more interest to you. This is especially going to be the case if you need to take your trimmer a fair way up your garden, or if you are landscaping a very large area.
Corded trimmers can only stretch so far, and if it is already awkward for you to plug in and carry your unit around with you, it may be time to look for a rechargeable model.
Cordless models, however, will need extensive charging, and in some cases, may even need fuel topping up. Look at your budget and work out whether or not you think investment offsets convenience.
Think carefully about the type of greenery you’re going to be regularly cutting. Need to cut through some big, bulky vegetation? Look for hedge trimmers with wider gaps in the teeth. Generally, you should be looking for gaps of 30mm or wider. Less than this, on the whole, should be perfect for smaller cutting needs.
Some hedge trimmers have comfortable or wraparound handles. These can help you to tackle trimming and sawing at difficult angles. Basic hedge trimmers will generally have straightforward handles which you can use to cut level vegetation or otherwise. Think carefully, again, about what you’re working with. Trimming intricate topiary? You’ll need a handle which will easily bend with you.
Some hedge trimmers pack a real powerful punch. The most powerful of the pack will likely have sawing functions built-in, which means you can switch from gentle trimming to deeper sawing for tougher greenery and branches. This will normally be easy to come by if you have an intuitive sawing element on your main blade.
Safety, of course, should be paramount. Be careful only ever to buy gardening tools which have protective sheaths and guards, and those which have emergency cut-out features. Not all garden power tools have these, but they can stop you from hurting yourself if you cut through a cable or cord.
Do always make sure to read your trimmer’s operations manual from front to back before use, regardless of whether or not you are an experienced topiarist.
Size and Shape
Finally, think about the dimensions of your trimmer. If you need to cut along deep hedges or get into tight spaces for intricate trimming, choose a power tool with a long blade, or plenty of reach. Look for blades longer than 500mm for a fantastic reach into even the trickiest of undergrowth.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the more common queries you may face while shopping around for your first hedge trimmer.
How Much Should I Pay for a Hedge Trimmer?
Depending on the size, shape and capability of your trimmer, you could be looking at paying as little as £30-£40 to get started. However, the more intricate, user-friendly trimmers will likely cost more than £100. In many cases, this will be a safe investment. This is especially the case if you have a lot to trim regularly.
Should I Buy a Petrol Hedge Trimmer?
Petrol-based hedge trimmers are great purchases if you need a little more power and flexibility. However, they can be very expensive to run, especially as you will need to keep refuelling and paying for petrol. Therefore, it may be more cost-effective to look for electric cordless models.
Why Should I Buy a Hedge Trimmer?
Hedge trimmers are amazingly convenient if you have a lot of greenery or shrubbery to get rid of. Using shears and secateurs constantly can hurt your arms and hands. While you get a lot of precision from hand-clipping, trimmers give you a lot more flexibility and quicker results.
Hedge trimmers aren’t just popular with landscape gardeners and topiarists. They have fast become big sellers with everyday gardeners, meaning that if you have a tricky or troublesome hedge or tree you need taking down to size, there is plenty of choice available. Take a look at the best available now, and see what other gardeners have to say!