Choosing the Right Electric or Petrol Hedge Trimmer

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This site is designed as a one stop resource for information and advice on choosing an electric or petrol hedge trimmer and other garden power tools including log splitters, pressure washers, leaf blowers and pruners.

When we began this site in 2010, we intended to just give advice on how to choose the right petrol hedge trimmer but the site has grown and expanded and we now have information on electric trimmers, strimmers and multi tools as you will see if you browse the list of articles and reviews by using the site index link that can be found at the top of the page, above the header picture.

Our Top Selling Hedge Trimmers This Month

Bosch AHS 6000 Pro T Hedgecutter Trueshopping petrol long reach multi function 5 in 1 garden tool Flymo SabreCut Hedge Trimmer
Bosch AH6 6000 PRO T Bosch AH6 7000 PRO T Trueshopping 5 in 1 Multi Tool Flymo Sabrecut Cordless

Get The Information You Need – BEFORE You Buy!

Every person buying a powered tool to cut their hedges and shrubs – whether they choose a petrol or an electric one, will have different requirements and there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution. On this site, you will find reviews of our favourite models and information on where to buy as well as lots of tips on using new purchase safely and effectively.

Our reviews section for garden power tools is growing all the time and you can look to see if we have reviewed a model you are interested in by checking the Site Index – Product Reviews section.

Before you get started, here are the key things you should take into consideration when buying:-

How Much Power Will You Need?

When buying a petrol powered model, a rough guide to power output is the size of the motor (measured in terms of the cc of the model).  Do you need a higher power model for thick brush and twiggy branches, or will you be using it to trim and keep your hedges well manicured on a regular basis?

Would You Find It Easier To Work With A Lightweight Model?

lightweight hedge trimmer

A lightweight petrol hedge trimmer

If you have a lot of cutting to do in your garden, you may prefer a lighter model to save your arms and shoulders from aches and pains! Make sure you are comfortable with the weight which is usually at least 5kgs for a petrol model. You will be using it at awkward angles and probably for quite a long time. You will need to be able to maneuver it easily and angle the blades according to the shape of your hedge. You should also take into consideration that the lighter the machine is, usually the less power you have.

Choose The Right Blade Length

spear and jackson 26ccThe length of the blade you should choose depends on how much hedging you have. Basically, as a rule-of-thumb, the larger the amount of hedging you have to maintain, the longer the blade you should choose. Longer blades also make cutting the tops of hedges easier but have the downside that they add weight and so models with longer blades are heavier and slightly more difficult to maneuver. Blades start at about 13” (32 cm) in length and go right up to 30” (75 cm). For normal garden use, choose a blade of around 14” (35 cm).

Choose The Right Blade Width

What blade width should you choose? The blade width indicates the spacing between the teeth and thus the thickness of branch that the blade will be able to cut through. As a rule, the blade width is the same as the maximum thickness of branch it can cut through.

Single Action Or Double Action Blades?

topiaryShould you choose single action or double action blades? Both kinds have a pair of blades, on the single action only one blade moves whilst on the double action, both blades move. This can be an advantage as not only are double action models usually more effective, the blades move in opposite directions, cancelling out the vibration to a large extent. This makes even a heavy machine easier to use and less tiring over long periods of time. Single action is not the same as single sided, only one side of the blade has teeth in single-sided models.

Do You Need Angled Blades?

adjustable cutter bar head
A petrol hedge trimmer with an adjustable cutter bar gearhead will allow for adjustment to the required angle for any particular job. It also has the advantage of being able to be adjusted for the user’s height – ideal if you are very tall.
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