As we're well into 2023, it's a perfect time to review the best hedge trimmers currently on the market. Whether you're a professional landscaper or a homeowner with a passion for gardening, a reliable hedge trimmer is an essential tool. This guide will delve into the top hedge trimmers of 2023, focusing on their specifications, performance, and overall value for money.
What is a Hedge Trimmer?
A hedge trimmer is a gardening tool designed to trim or prune hedges or shrubbery. It consists of a long blade with multiple sharp teeth that cut through branches and leaves with ease. Using a hedge trimmer periodically helps keep your hedges healthy, promotes growth, and maintains a neat appearance.
Types of Hedge Trimmers
There are three main types of hedge trimmers: electric, gas-powered, and cordless.
Electric Hedge Trimmers
Electric hedge trimmers are lightweight, quiet, and easy to use. They are suitable for small to medium-sized hedges. However, they require a power source, which can limit their range.
Gas-powered Hedge Trimmers
Gas-powered trimmers are more powerful and ideal for larger hedges or thick branches. They don't have a cord, so they offer more mobility. However, they are heavier, noisier, and require more maintenance than electric trimmers.
Cordless Hedge Trimmers
Cordless hedge trimmers run on batteries, offering the convenience of cordless operation without the noise and emissions of gas models. They are less powerful than gas models but are ideal for small to medium hedges. The run time depends on the battery capacity.
Key Factors to Consider
When shopping for a hedge trimmer, consider the following factors:
- Power: Your choice of power source will depend on the size and type of hedges you will be trimming. For small to medium-sized hedges, an electric or cordless trimmer may be sufficient. For larger hedges or thicker branches, a gas-powered trimmer would be more suitable.
- Blade Length: The length of the blade determines the reach of the trimmer. Longer blades can cut more in a single pass but can be harder to control. For most homeowners, a blade length of 16 to 24 inches should be sufficient.
- Tooth Spacing: The spacing between the teeth on the blade determines the maximum branch size the trimmer can cut. Larger tooth gaps can cut thicker branches. A gap of 3/8 to 3/4 inch is suitable for most hedges.
- Weight and Ergonomics: Consider the weight and ergonomics of the trimmer. It should be comfortable to hold and easy to maneuver. Look for models with adjustable or rotating handles that can provide a better grip and reduce fatigue during prolonged use.
- Noise and Vibration: Gas-powered trimmers are generally noisier than electric or cordless models. If noise is a concern, consider an electric or cordless model. Some models also feature anti-vibration technology for more comfortable use.
- Safety Features: Look for safety features such as a safety switch, hand guards, and blade covers. Some models also have a brake that stops the blade immediately when the trigger is released.
Our Top Picks of 2023:
1. DeWalt DCHT820P1
Specifications: 22" cutting length, 5.3 lbs, 20V MAX Lithium-Ion battery
Known for its reliability and robust build, the DeWalt DCHT820P1 is a versatile cordless hedge trimmer that provides both power and precision. It sports a 22-inch laser-cut, hooked-tooth blade design that can cut branches up to 3/4-inch thick. The DCHT820P1 is powered by a 20V MAX Lithium-Ion battery, part of DeWalt's interchangeable battery system, giving it sufficient run time for most trimming tasks.
Performance: Despite its lightweight design, the DCHT820P1 doesn't compromise on performance. It provides a high output motor and laser-cut, hardened steel blades engineered for clean, fast cuts on branches up to 3/4 of an inch thick.
Value for money: The DeWalt DCHT820P1 is a bit on the expensive side, but the superior quality, durability, and performance make it worth the investment.
2. Black+Decker LHT2436
Specifications: 24" cutting length, 6.9 lbs, 40V MAX Lithium-Ion battery
The Black+Decker LHT2436 is a fantastic cordless option for homeowners. It features a 24-inch dual-action blade that reduces vibration compared to single-action blades, providing a smooth, comfortable trimming experience.
Performance: The 40V MAX Lithium-Ion battery delivers power and run-time to handle up to 6000 square feet of hedges per charge. It also comes with a 'Power Drive' transmission that allows it to cut two times more branches at once.
Value for money: What sets the LHT2436 apart is its affordability without sacrificing performance. It's an excellent choice for those on a budget who still want a high-quality, reliable hedge trimmer.
3. EGO Power+ HT2400
Specifications: 24" cutting length, 6.2 lbs, 56V Lithium-Ion battery
The EGO Power+ HT2400 is a high-powered, cordless hedge trimmer that delivers performance equivalent to many gas-powered models. It's powered by a 56V Lithium-Ion battery, which is part of EGO's universal battery system.
Performance: The HT2400 has a 24-inch dual-action, hardened steel blade for precise cuts. Its 3/4-inch cut capacity gets the job done efficiently. The EGO Power+ HT2400 also has an electric brake for added safety.
Value for money: While the EGO Power+ HT2400 is more expensive than some other models, its gas-like performance and part of a versatile battery system justify the price tag for many users.
4. Husqvarna 966532302 122HD45 Gas Hedge Trimmer
Specifications: 18" cutting length, 10.36 lbs, 21.7cc 2-cycle engine
For those who prefer the power and performance of a gas hedge trimmer, the Husqvarna 122HD45 is a top choice. It features an 18-inch dual-action blade and a 21.7cc 2-cycle engine.
Performance: The 122HD45 delivers top-notch performance, tackling even the toughest hedges with ease. It has an anti-vibration system that makes it more comfortable to use over extended periods.
Value for money: Although it's pricier than some electric models, the Husqvarna 122HD45's power, performance, and durability make it a good investment for those who need a heavy-duty hedge trimmer.
5. Makita XHU02Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Hedge Trimmer
Specifications: 22" cutting length, 7.4 lbs, 18V LXT Lithium-Ion battery
The Makita XHU02Z is a versatile, cordless hedge trimmer that's part of Makita's 18V Lithium-Ion series. It offers a 22-inch blade and weighs just over 7 pounds.
Performance: The XHU02Z delivers 1,350 SPM for increased cutting speed and a 2-handed operation switch for user safety. It also has a low noise level at only 87 dB(A) for operator comfort.
Value for money: It'spriced mid-range, making it an accessible choice for many homeowners. The Makita XHU02Z offers reliable performance and durability, making it a worthy investment.
6. Worx WG261
Specifications: 22" cutting length, 5.5 lbs, 20V MAX Lithium battery
The Worx WG261 is a lightweight, cordless hedge trimmer that delivers a lot of power for its size. Its 22-inch dual-action blades cut twigs and branches up to 3/4 of an inch in diameter.
Performance: Despite its compact size, the WG261 packs a punch with its high-capacity 20V MAX Lithium battery. It also features a D-grip front handle that makes it easy to trim at different angles.
Value for money: The WG261 is an affordable choice that offers excellent value for money. It's perfect for homeowners who need a lightweight, yet powerful hedge trimmer.
7. Echo HC-152 Gas Powered Hedge Trimmer
Specifications: 20" cutting length, 11.8 lbs, 21.2 cc professional-grade, 2-stroke engine
The Echo HC-152 is a gas-powered hedge trimmer that stands out for its robust performance and professional features. It's powered by a 21.2 cc professional-grade, 2-stroke engine and has a 20-inch double-sided, double-reciprocating RazorEdge blades for efficient trimming.
Performance: The HC-152 is designed for exceptional performance. Its large rear handle provides comfort and great control. It also has a forward-facing exhaust, which prevents burnt hedges.
Value for money: The Echo HC-152 is more expensive than many electric models, but its professional-grade features and superior performance justify the higher price tag.
8. Greenworks PRO 24-Inch 80V Cordless Hedge Trimmer
Specifications: 24" cutting length, 8.9 lbs, 80V Lithium-Ion battery
The Greenworks PRO is a cordless hedge trimmer that offers gas comparable performance. Powered by an 80V Lithium-Ion battery, it provides up to 60 minutes of run-time with fully charged 2.0AH battery.
Performance: The Greenworks PRO features a 24-inch dual-action blade that offers optimal performance with up to 3600 cuts per minute. It also has a 3/4-inch cutting capacity for controlled, easy trimming of most bushes and hedges.
Value for money: The Greenworks PRO is a higher-end cordless model, but its robust performance, long runtime, and the convenience of cordless operation make it a worthwhile investment.
Safety Tips For Using Hedge Trimmers
When using hedge trimmers, it's important to prioritize safety to avoid accidents and injuries. Here are some safety tips to keep in mind:
- Wear protective gear: Always wear long sleeves, long pants, and closed-toe shoes when operating hedge trimmers. This will help protect you from branches and debris that may fly away during trimming.
- Use the right tool for the job: Choose the appropriate hedge trimmer for the size and type of hedge you are trimming. Make sure the trimmer is in good working condition and properly maintained.
- Read the manual: Before using the hedge trimmer, read the manual carefully to understand its proper usage, safety features, and any specific safety precautions you need to take.
- Inspect the area: Before starting to trim, inspect the area around the hedge for any obstacles or hazards, such as rocks, plants, or power lines. Make sure the area is clear and safe to work in.
- Keep your body parts away: Keep your hands, fingers, and face away from the blade and cutting area. Use the correct cutting technique to avoid touching the blade or getting caught in the cutting mechanism.
- Maintain a safe distance: Keep a safe distance from the hedge trimmer's blade and cutting area while trimming. This will help prevent accidents and injuries.
- Keep the trimmer steady: Keep the hedge trimmer steady and balanced while trimming. Avoid making uncontrolled movements or applying too much pressure, which can cause the trimmer to slip or kick back.
- Turn off the trimmer when not in use: Turn off the hedge trimmer when you're finished trimming or taking a break. This will help prevent accidents and save battery life.
While all the hedge trimmers on this list have their unique strengths, the best one for you will ultimately depend on your specific needs and budget. Whether you prefer the power of gas or the convenience of cordless, there's a hedge trimmer out there that's perfect for you.
Remember, it's important to consider factors such as blade length, weight, cutting capacity, and noise level when choosing a hedge trimmer. By doing so, you'll ensure that you choose a tool that's not only powerful and efficient but also comfortable and easy to use.