What is a Lawn Edger?
So, what is a lawn edger? It’s also referred to as an ‘edge trimmer’ so it’s quite confusing.
A lawn edger is a yard tool that is used for defining boundary lines, if you will.
What sort of boundary lines are we talking about?
Lawn to flower and shrub beds, lawn to driveway or sidewalk. That sort of thing.
Typically, a lawn edger will have a vertical spinning blade or ‘string’ that is used to cut through grass in order to eliminate excess growth which works against an attractive appearance. We all like our lawns to look tidy and neatly cut, don’t we?
There are manual lawn edge trimmers and there are motorized lawn edge trimmers.
Traditional manual lawn edgers can be described as a variant on a simple spade that is used to chop excess grass off. Most common among these would be the half-moon lawn edger.
Motorized lawn edgers are powered by electricity, gas, and these days, also by a rechargeable battery.
Frequently, a motorized edger will come with a guiding wheel, the wheel being used to guide the edger along the border’s edge. This encourages a straight line.
The final result whether you use a manual trimmer or a motorized trimmer is a cleanly defined edge. And that cleanly defined edge helps to make your lawn, and your overall landscaping, more aesthetically pleasing.
Manual edgers such as the half-moon edger, are cheap. But a manual edger may not be the optimal choice if there’s a lot of edging to do. Why not? Simply because it takes a lot longer to do the work and after a while, it becomes a back-breaking job. Well, not literally back breaking but the lower back, in particular, starts to throb.
Gas-powered edgers provide the most power and make the best choice for anyone that has plenty of thick weeds to get through.
Having said that, these days, electric and rechargeable-battery type lawn edgers are capable of pulling their weight.
As is the case with gas-powered lawn mowers, gas-powered edgers are noisier and heavier than the electrically powered and battery-powered counterparts. Gas edgers vibrate a lot more, too, plus for the typical homeowner, there are oftentimes problems experienced with oil/ gas mixes and with the string and the string feeder spool.
If you merely wish to tidy around some flowerbeds once or twice each month during the growing season, chances are that the gas-powered edger is not necessary. For the pro gardener/ landscaper, gas-powered lawn edgers are pretty much a necessity.
What is a String Trimmer?
String trimmers are also referred to as weed eaters and weed whackers. A string trimmer is best used in areas that your lawnmower is unable to reach – around trees, around buildings, around any obstacles that exist in your lawn.
With a string trimmer, you get a monofilament line which is very flexible. This monofilament line is fed through from a spool.
String trimmers can be powered by gas or by electricity or by rechargeable batteries.
Once again, gas-powered string trimmers pack more punch than electrically and battery-powered string trimmers. They are also heavier. Electrically powered trimmers do afford a decent amount of power but the power cord (attached to an electrical power source) can prove to be somewhat burdensome.
Corded and battery-operated string trimmers are, possibly so, ideal for smaller-sized yards.
String Trimmer – What Else to Consider
Besides the power source, there are various features that come with string trimmers which you’ll need to take into account.
Some trimmers have guiding wheels and guards. Some come with straight handles/ stems while others are angled. Most have an auto-feed spool so the string comes out when you need it.
What’s the Difference Between a Lawn Edger and a String Trimmer?
Lawn edgers are designed to create boundaries. String trimmers, on the other hand, are used to maintain boundaries.
String trimmers are the ideal tool to trim lengthy grass at the edge of the lawn and around various obstacles. String trimmers are frequently used after mowing so that your lawn has a nice ‘finished’ appearance.
When you wish to create edges around the lawn boundaries, it’s best to use a dedicated lawn edger. Why?
Because lawn edgers are more suited to crafting clean edges.
Having said that, these days there are many excellent grass trimmers that double up as lawn edgers – a 2-in-1 affair, if you want to call it that.
Either way, you’d be best served by wearing some safety gear when using motorized tools such as a lawn trimmer and / or a lawn edger – particularly so for the gas-powered tools. What sort of safety gear? Safety glasses, hearing protection, boots. And don’t be tempted to wear short pants.
Take extra care if you’re using either tool to edge along gravel. Gravel can make for a rather dangerous propellant.
To finish, we’ve rounded up a selection of the best battery-operated lawn edgers for your convenience.