The 11 Best Weed Eaters for an Immaculate Lawn

Weed-Eaters

If you’re lucky enough to have a lawn in your yard, you’ll already know it takes plenty of hard work to keep it looking at its best.

As well as requiring a great lawn mower to make your life easier, you’ll also need to consider a weed eater if you want to ensure the edges are trimmed neatly.

Weed eaters go by many names, including weed whackers, string trimmers, and trimmers.

If you have no idea what to look for when you’re comparing the best weed eaters, focus on the following pointers before whipping out your credit card:

  • Type of weed eater: A gas-powered weed eater is the most powerful type you can find, but they are not to everyone’s liking. These models are heavier and noisier, and they also cost more to run since you’ll need to factor in the cost of gas and oil. Burning gas, these trimmers also pollute the atmosphere. While ideal for commercial use or for much larger residential lawns, for most purposes you’ll find a cordless battery-powered weed eater is more effective. Lightweight, maneuverable, and easy to use, you won’t need to worry about running costs either. Batteries are rechargeable, but that also brings with it the inbuilt problem with cordless trimmers. Many of these models only deliver 20 minutes or so of run time, so make sure this is enough for your requirements before committing to purchase. Somewhere in between come corded electric weed eaters, but these are in the minority and we don’t review any of these models today
  • Cutting path: The cutting path or cutting swath of weed eaters translates to how quickly you’ll trim your lawn. We break this down in the features tab of each product so you can readily compare them like-for-like
  • Battery life (for cordless weed eaters): Many of the cordless trimmers we review today only provide 20 minutes of run time between charges. Some models come with a quick-charge feature allowing you to get a partial burst of charge in a couple of hours. For smaller yards, this type of run time should suffice
  • 2-cycle or 4-cycle (for gas weed eaters): If you have a gas weed eater, 2-cycle models require you to mix oil in with the gas, while 4-cycle models run on just gas.
  • Weight: Look for a weed eater that’s light enough for you to comfortably use without feeling tired or overburdened

OK, with that simple framework in place, you should now be ideally positioned to explore out curated collection of the best weed eaters at your disposal. Dive in and see if any of these seems like the right fit for your toolshed.

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I. The 11 Best Weed Eaters

1. Our #1 Pick: Makita Brushless String Trimmer

Makita-XRU15PT1-36V-(18V-X2)-LXT-Brushless-String-Trimmer

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 15 inches
  • Weight: 21 pounds

First in line and our overall favorite in today’s showcase of the best weed eaters comes from Makita, a brand best known for their power tools. As you would expect, they bring that same precision engineering to this string trimmer, so how does it stand up?

The first thing to be aware of is that this trimmer is especially heavy by the standards of most cordless competitors. This thing feels as big and heavy as a gas trimmer, but you won’t get the same firepower.

That said, the highly capable brushless motor is no slouch, and you’ll find yourself putting the finishing touches on smaller lawns reasonably quickly and seamlessly.

The direct drive technology gives you added torque where you need it, and automatic torque drive technology automatically adjusts the RPM to deliver added power or extra run time on-demand. You ge the following settings:

  • Low: 3,500 RPM
  • Medium: 5,300 RPM
  • High: 6,500 RPM

The efficient bump-and-feed trimmer head comes equipped with the 0.08-inch line you need to get going right out the box.

At 15 inches, the cutting path is wide enough that you won’t be spending all day trimming and edging your lawn.

Powered by a pair of batteries you can charge in a hurry when required, you will get perhaps 30 minutes of run time from this trimmer, giving you a lot more leeway than most of the competition.

While this weed eater is quite heavy and it’s also not the easiest model on our shortlist to handle, if you don’t mind a workout when you’re gardening, this is one of the best weed eaters to ensure your lawn is impeccably finished.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Powerful brushless motor
  • Wide cutting swath
  • 3 speeds
  • Quite hard to maneuver

2. Ryobi Cordless String Trimmer

RYOBI-40-Volt-Lithium-Ion-Cordless-Attachment-Capable-String-Trimmer

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 13 to 15 inches
  • Weight: 13.4 pounds

Next in line comes another great cordless weed eater, this time from Ryobi. Where many brands have a deep bench of all types of strimmer, Ryobi places a sharp focus on cordless battery-powered models, so how does this specialist’s offering stand and fall?

This trimmer is not part of a complete line of tools, so you can’t save money by picking up the bare tool. The comprehensive package here gives you the trimmer along with the 40-volt lithium ion battery and charger you need.

As with all cordless trimmers, you’re getting convenience and maneuverability, but at the expense of the power you associate with gas string trimmers or corded electric weed eaters.

The cutting width on this trimmer is adjustable from 13 to 15 inches, making this one of the most flexible solutions on our shortlist. Tweaking the width will give you either extended run time or a wider cutting path and quicker results, depending on your preference.

Use the variable speed trigger to help you cut with more control and apply those precious finishing touches to your lawn.

The trimmer is enabled to accept a variety of extra attachments, giving you a versatile all-rounder while saving space in the tool shed.

Only suitable for right-handed users, there is no setting for neutral-handed or left-handed operation, so make sure you’re comfy with this before committing to purchase.

Suggested for cutting the edges of lawns up to 1 acre, this weed eater is a quiet, efficient, and affordable option from a brand you can trust.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Adjustable cutting width
  • User-friendly string head
  • Add multiple attachments
  • Not good for left-handers

3. Husqvarna Gas String Trimmer

Husqvarna-128LD-17

Features

  • Type: Gas (2-cycle)
  • Cutting path: 17 inches
  • Weight: 11 pounds

Husqvarna is a company most famous for its world-class sewing machines, but this weed eater shows they are no one-trick ponies.

This is a gas-powered trimmer, so you need to be sure the noise and effort involved doesn’t present a problem.

This is a 2-cycle gas engine, so this means you’ll need to mix up gas and oil to power it. All you need is some 2-cycle oil along with some unleaded gas, and you’ll get a bottle and mixing instructions bundled.

Now, many gas-powered string trimmers are notoriously tricky to start. While this is not the smoothest starter, it’s not too tough to get going either. Air purge technology baked in serves to remove air from both the carburetor and fuel system, and you should fire this weed eater up without too much grief.

Once it’s running, it kicks out a fair amount of noise like all gas weed eaters, so if you’re prepared to put up with those downsides, this is where the benefits come in.

In operation, this weed eater helps you get more work done in less time, so you can power your way through the edges of larger gardens without eating up hours of your afternoon.

The head of this trimmer is designed to work with either a trimmer head or a glass blade, giving you great flexibility.

You should have no excuses at all for running out of gas thanks to the translucent fuel tank.

Part of a multi-tool family, invest in this mini-ecosystem and get everything you need to take care of your yard this coming fall and beyond.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Extremely powerful
  • Tap ‘n go line release
  • Transparent fuel tank
  • You’ll need to mix gas and oil

4. Craftsman String Trimmer

CRAFTSMAN-V20-String-Trimmer-/-Edger-(CMCST910M1)

Features

  • Type: Cordless
  • Cutting path: 13 inches
  • Weight: 6.3 pounds

Next up is another cordless string trimmer, arguably the most popular of all types. While you can’t expect to rival the raw power and performance of a gas-powered weed eater, you won’t get the noise or the hassle either.

One of the key selling points of the Craftsman is the fact it weighs just 6 pounds, so you’ll find you can beaver away trimming and edging your lawn without fatigue setting in. For anyone who struggles with mobility, this nifty tool means you can still take care of putting the finishes touches on your lawn.

This model comes equipped with twin speed settings, so you can choose between extended run time or increased power to suit.

At 13 inches, the cutting path is not the widest, but you’ll still find yourself efficiently trimming and edging. Speed is further increased as the lightweight nature of this string trimmer lets you get more work done with less effort.

The push-button feed is ostensibly straightforward to operate. We did, though, encounter a handful of complaints about this feed, so if you’re looking for a totally seamless weed eater experience, you may want to explore some of the other models above and below.

This trimmer is compatible with the manufacturer’s VERSATRACK wall organization system. This comes in very handy if you have limited storage space and an ever-growing collection of tools. You’ll need to buy this system separately, though.

Ideal for both trimming and edging, you have everything you need to give your lawn those essential finishing touches.

Backed by a robust 3-year limited warranty, you can buy with complete confidence and with absolutely nothing to lose. This is hands-down one of the best weed eaters in a crowded market segment.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Ideal for trimming and edging
  • Simple push-button feed
  • 3-year guarantee
  • Some reported issues with line feed

5. WORX Cordless String Trimmer

WORX-WG163.8-GT-3.0-20V-PowerShare-12

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 12 inches
  • Weight: 5.3 pounds

WORX has a deep bench of highly efficient weed eaters, including this dinky and lightweight cordless model that deserves a place on your shortlist.

Even by the standards of cordless trimmers, this thing is extremely light and easy to handle. For anyone with arthritis or joint problems, this model makes a great choice.

The bright orange accents on this trimmer allow you to readily see it even if you set it down in long grass.

Compatible with all WORX tools, both 20V and 40V, you can share the battery between appliances, meaning you can save money by picking up bare tools and using the same powerplant between them.

One of the man draws with this trimmer is the way the head is designed to pivot at up to 90 degrees. This comes in very handy when you’re working in hard-to-reach spots, and lets you impart a super-close finish.

The line is delivered on-demand at the push of a button, so there is no bumping involved, and there is no automatic feed either.

The extendable handle helps streamline storage, and it also means you can adjust the fit of this weed eater to accommodate users of varying heights, perfect if different family members take care of yard duty.

You will only get 20 minutes or so of run time from this trimmer, so it works best for smaller lawns. This is a problem you’ll face with many cordless weed eaters, even those running on two batteries. On the plus side, charging is pretty brisk, and you’ll get a lot of work done in just 20 minutes anyway.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Superlight and maneuverable
  • Converts from trimmer to edger
  • Multi-position handle
  • Limited run time

6. BLACK + DECKER String Trimmer

BLACK+DECKER-20V-MAX-String-Trimmer-/-Edger,-12-Inch-(LST300)

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 12 inches
  • Weight: 5.7 pounds

BLACK + DECKER has a line of 20V Max Power tools that all make use of the same lithium-ion batteries.

This is a complete kit offering a battery and charger as well as the trimmer. You can also save money by picking up bare tools in this range and then sharing the battery between your tools. Not only will you spend less, but you’ll also need less storage space.

This model delivers 2-in-1 functionality, operating as both a trimmer and a wheeled edger.

With the automatic line feed system, you won’t need to master the art of bumping line, and you can focus on those delicate touches instead of messing around with the line.

This battery-powered cordless weed eater weighs less than 6 pounds so you can impart the finishing touches to your lawn without straining yourself.

If you need to extend the run time on this trimmer, you can dial back the power to bleed more battery life.

The highly efficient power drive system gives you a seamless experience from start to finishing, whether you’re edging or trimming your lawn.

As well as delivering all the power you need, this cordless weed eater also runs very quietly, and you’ll of course get none of the niggle of gas fumes belching into the atmosphere either. Let us know what you think if you treat yourself to this highly efefctive weed eater.

Build quality is solid and you can expect a hassle-free and highly adjustable approach to trimming the edges of your lawn from a brand you can rely on.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Multiple configurations
  • Easy to handle
  • Part of 20V Max Power line
  • Battery life could be improved

7. WORZ Cordless String Trimmer

WORX-WG184-40V-Power-Share-13

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 13 inches
  • Weight: 6.5 pounds

Another entry from the ever-reliable WORX stable is up next with this small but deceptively powerful 13-inch trimmer. What do you get for your money, then?

WORX tools are best if you buy into the whole ecosystem. The same applies to many cordless trimmers. All tools in this line share the same batteries, allowing you to pick up bare tools to add to your collection, saving money and space at the same time while allowing you to use the same battery across tools.

The ergonomic throttle comes equipped with variable speed, so you’ll be free to match the pace of trimming to the length and density of the grass. If you need to eke out a bit more battery life, you can dial down the speed and achieve this.

As with most small cordless weed eaters, you can expect to get no more than 20 minutes of run time out of this thing before it needs a burst of charge. As long as this fits your needs, you’re getting one of the best weed eaters out there, and it’s also lightweight and user-friendly.

Like many trimmers in this class, the WORX serves double duty as an edger.

Using this weed eater couldn’t be easier. Grab the oversized handle from all angles and swipe with ease to trim the edges of your lawn to perfection without breaking your back.

You benefit from dual batteries with this unit, although you’ll still struggle to get much more than half an hour of use from the weed eater between charges. For larger lawns and longer run times, step up to a gas-powered string trimmer like several we review today.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Compatible with wide line of tools
  • Convertible trimmer/edger
  • Pair of batteries onboard
  • 20 minutes of battery life at most

8. BLACK + DECKER String Trimmer

BLACK+DECKER-(LST136)-40V-Max-String-Trimmer-/-Edger,-13-Inch

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 13 inches
  • Weight: 7.8 pounds

As we edge toward the end of our weed eater reviews, yet another entry from the BLACK + DECKER stable. How does this battery-powered model differentiate itself, then?

Well, at just under 8 pounds, this is a pretty lightweight weed eater, and it’s also highly maneuverable. If you have lots of tight spots in your yard, this makes an excellent choice for imparting the finishing touches when you’ve packed the mower away.

The transmission features the precision engineering you would expect from a power tools specialist, and you’ll get more power without needing to resort to a gas-powered trimmer.

The automatic feed spool makes this weed eater a neat choice for beginners. You won’t need to worry about bumping out more line, and you can just let the trimmer do the hard work while you concentrate on manicuring the edges of your lawn.

The 40V battery will give you perhaps 20 minutes of run time, standard for trimmers in this class. What sets this model apart from much of the competition is the fact you can deliver a quick charge in just 2 hours, making this one of the more convenient cordless weed eaters out there.

While almost all user reviews of this string trimmer are positive, we found a handful of complaints concerning the amount of line you’ll get through. As long as you don’t object to this minor niggle, you’re getting one of the best weed eaters at a keen price here.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Automatic feed spool
  • Quick charging in 2 hours
  • Efficient transmission for more power
  • String doesn’t last long

9. EGO Power+ String Trimmer

EGO-Power+-15-Inch-56-Volt-Lithium-Ion-Cordless-Brushless-String-Trimmer

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 15 inches
  • Weight: 9 pounds

We still have time for a few more weed eaters in today’s quest for the best model on the market, with this battery-powered effort from EGO Power+ deserving a place on any shortlist.

Running on a 56V lithium-ion battery, you’ll face the same weak battery life common to many cordless weed eaters. As long as you have a smaller yard to deal with, though, you should find you can trim and edge your lawn before running out of juice.

Using this trimmer is super-simple. You’ll need to master a slight learning curve with the dual-feed line, but once you’ve got to grips with this, you’ll get a weed eater that’s much less hassle to use than some of the more powerful gas models we review today.

The brushless motor ensures you have ample firepower in reserve, but you won’t make too much noise or disturb the neighbors as occurs with some noisier gas-powered trimmers.

This is the starter kit that bundles everything you need to get going, including the battery and the charger.

Use the variable speed trigger to manipulate the pace according to the type of grass you’re working with.

Weighing in at 9 pounds, this isn’t the lightest string trimmer you’ll find, but you should find it easy enough to use without feeling burdened.

Backed by a 5-year limited warranty, with the battery pack guaranteed for 3 years, you know this manufacturer has your back and you can expect plenty of faithful service from this weed eater.

For trimming and edging smaller lawns with precision, this is among the best weed eaters you’ll find.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Dual-feed line
  • Brushless motor
  • Lengthy shaft
  • Battery life is weak

10. Poulan Pro Straight Shaft String Trimmer

Poulan-Pro-PR28SD,-17-in.-28cc-2-Cycle-Gas-Straight-Shaft-String-Trimmer

Features

  • Type: Gas (2-cycle)
  • Cutting path: 17 inches
  • Weight: 14 pounds

Poulan Pro is a brand that specializes in gas-powered weed eaters, and this straight shaft model shows why their products fly off shelves the world over.

Unlike many gas-fueled trimmers, this one won’t cause you too many problems when it comes to firing it up. On the contrary, you’ll get effortless pull starting so you can get right down to business. An air purge feature ensures there is no air left in the carburetor or fuel system to further streamline startup.

As you would expect from a trimmer in this class, you need to put up with a fair bit of weight. At 14 pounds, you won’t want to spend too long working with this thing.

The dual-line feed system comes with a tap and feed head. As with all aspects of using a gas-powered trimmer, this will take some getting used to, but you’ll soon be trimming the edges of your lawn like a pro.

This is a 2-cycle gas trimmer, so you’ll need to get some oil as well as unleaded gas and mix them up in the right ratio.

Designed to accept 6 additional attachments – these are available separately – you can turn this weed eater into one of the most versatile tools in your shed.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Easy to start
  • Dual-line feed
  • Air purge baked in
  • Quite heavy

11. WORX Cordless String Trimmer

Worx-WG191-56V-13

Features

  • Type: Battery-powered
  • Cutting path: 13 inches
  • Weight: 6.3 pounds

To round out our quest for the best weed eater, we have another model from the inimitable WORX.

Another cordless battery-powered trimmer, this makes a great choice for beginners, as well as for anyone looking for a lightweight and maneuverable ally in the garden.

Marketed as delivering gas-like performance but with zero emissions, you won’t get any of the noise associated with a gas-powered model either. Do your neighbors and the environment a favor by opting for this dinky trimmer.

This is an upgraded model featuring a new and improved command feed system. You may need to take some time accustoming yourself to this, but you’ll soon be expertly trimming the edges of your lawn once it’s been mowed.

The trimmer line is thick and robust, so you’ll get plenty of help when you’re working with tougher grass.

Use this trimmer to trim or edge, with the removable wheels coming in extremely handy.

The straight shaft and pivoting head work wonderfully together and provide you with the confidence to work in rough terrain while still delivering a first-class finish.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Upgraded command feed system
  • Removable wheels
  • Thick trimmer line
  • Uses lots of line

II. FAQs

1) How does a weed eater work?

Weed eaters use tough but thin microfilament string that slices through weeds and grass to give your lawn those all-important finishing touches. Although the line is tough enough to slice confidently through weeds and grass, it won’t cause any damage to hard surfaces. As the motor of the weed eater runs, the line will stiffen and cut through any grass and weeds in its way.

2) Do I need to take any precautions when using an electric weed eater?

You should always use weed eaters with extreme caution. When you’re using a corded electric trimmer, make sure any extension cable you use is in working order with no exposed wires. You should only use your weed eater in weather conditions where it’s safe to use electronic products. Avoid rubbing the head of your trimmer on the ground as you work. This will end up causing premature wear-and-tear. You should always wear safety goggles or glasses when you’re working, too. You’ll often find pieces of debris flying up due to the high speed at which the line is spinning. The last thing you want is for any of these projectiles to end up hitting you in the face. If the trimmer comes equipped with a guard, make sure it’s always in position.

3) Why is the line breaking on my weed eater?

On most occasions, trimmer line breaks due to crowding. Crowding occurs if the head of your trimmer comes into close contact with hard objects. Try your best to keep the line full extended to minimize crowding and maximize the life of your line and cut down on breakage.

4) Is there any way to make my line last longer?

Making sure to use your weed eater in line with operating instructions is the most effective way of making the string last longer. You should also pay close attention to spool size, as different spool sizes will return different lifespans.

5) What’s the difference between a grass trimmer and a brush cutter?

A grass trimmer, also known as a weed eater, is not as heavy-duty as a brush cutter. Many brush cutters come packing circular toothed blades. These blades spin at high velocity, making them great for cutting down thick and stubborn overgrowth as well as woody weeds. Most trimmers come with a length of single nylon or double nylon. The line spins round and works well for slicing through grass and lighter weeds like nettles. Trimmers work better than brush cutters if you need to cut up against trees, walls, or fences.

6) How do trimmers with straight shafts and curved shafts differ?

Most weed eaters featuring curved shafts are shorter than trimmers with straight shafts. Not only does this make curved shaft trimmers lighter, but they are also usually more balanced, easier to control, and easier to maneuver. For very tall users, curved shaft models might feel a little short. You will also find it more awkward to trim under benches or undergrowth. Here, a straight shaft weed eater works best. In most cases, you’ll also find that a straight shaft weed eater will give you a lengthier lifespan, so if you’re shopping for trimmers based primarily in durability, you can’t go wrong by sticking with a straight shaft model.

7) What is a split shaft weed eater?

When the shaft of a weed eater is split, this streamlines both transportation and storage. The other advantage of split shaft weed eaters is the ability you have to add additional heads, from hedge trimmers and pole pruner through to tillers. Not only are split shaft trimmers space-saving, but they are also highly adaptable multi-tools, so why not consider adding one of these to your arsenal?


III. Conclusion

We very much hope today’s guide to the best weed eaters out there has given you plenty of options.

The most crucial choice involves the power source, so decide between the power and performance of gas or the convenience and maneuverability of cordless battery power.

Stick with any of the weed eaters we review today and you can buy with a clear idea of both the benefits and the drawbacks of these models. If you happen to run across a string trimmer we didn’t review, our buying guide and FAQs should help you determine if it’s suitable for your purposes.

Take a moment to bookmark Wild River Country before you head off today and be sure to pop back soon. We update our content daily.

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