String Trimmers: Ratings of Sources
Total of 18 Sources
For an explanation of how we rank reviews, see our ratings criteria page.
by Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Our AssessmentConsumerReports.org rates more than 60 string trimmers; each has been tested for its ability to perform vertical edging, trim a lawn and handle tall grass and weeds. Ease of use and overall handling are also evaluated. Each tested string trimmer receives an overall rating and is ranked compared to other trimmers of the same type. However, several of the listed models have been discontinued.
The Best New String Trimmers: Comparison Test
by Roy Berendsohn
Our AssessmentBased on two and a half days of exhaustive testing along trails, barns and stone walls, Roy Berendsohn names the best string trimmer from among six gas-powered models. Competition is close, but the Echo 225i emerges the victor with a perfect 5-star rating for its "explosive power and torque" in thick grass, weeds and overgrowth. However, all the trimmers in the test earn at least 4 stars out of 5. The article provides a brief summary of each trimmer's pros and cons.
Which Kind of Fuel Is Best for Lawn String Trimmers?
by Doug Mahoney
Our AssessmentReviewer Doug Mahoney tests three string trimmers: a Craftsman-branded Lehr propane trimmer; the Worx GT WG151, which runs on Lithium-ion batteries; and the two-stroke gas Troy-Bilt TB80 EC. He rates each on raw power, run time on a full tank, ease of startup, noise and ergonomics. The Worx cordless trimmer is the winner in the last three categories; the Troy-Bilt wins for its raw power and the Lehr and Troy-Bilt trimmers tie for the longest run time. Mahoney concludes that if you need a trimmer that can handle tall grass and weeds, the Troy-Bilt is the best; the Lehr trimmer is not far behind, but it does weigh more. If you don't need to do heavy-duty trimming, the Worx is the best choice, says Mahoney.
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentThe owner ratings and reviews of string trimmers are easy to filter and browse here, since the model listings show not only the average rating but also the number of reviews on which the rating is based. In general, cordless string trimmers, such as the Black & Decker LST220, get the highest ratings. The gas string trimmers sold here are mostly inexpensive models with fewer reviews. Because Amazon.com doesn't carry higher-end gas-powered trimmers from brands like Stihl, you won't find any ratings for them here. The only gas-powered model that gets high overall ratings is the Hitachi CG22EASSLP.
by Contributors to HomeDepot.com
Our AssessmentHomeDepot.com publishes owner reviews and ratings of the string trimmers sold here. Although there are not as many reviews per item as at Amazon.com, a few trimmers receive 10 reviews or more. The top-rated models are the gas-powered Echo SRM-225, the corded electric Black & Decker ST1000 and the cordless Ryobi P2050. However, several trimmers from Black & Decker and Ryobi receive low overall ratings, indicating that different models from the same manufacturer can vary greatly in quality.
by Contributors to Sears.com
Our AssessmentSears sells its own Craftsman brand, as well as trimmers by brands such as Hitachi, Worx and Black & Decker. However, we did not find as many owner reviews at this site as at Amazon.com or HomeDepot.com. Although a few models accumulate 50 reviews or more from users, most of these do not earn particularly high overall ratings. However, a few trimmers -- including the cordless Worx GT WG150 and the gas-powered Hitachi CG22EASSLP --receive high overall ratings from 25 users or more.
by Contributors to Lowes.com
Our AssessmentLowes.com publishes ratings and user comments for the string trimmers sold here. The site makes it easy to sort through reviews, showing the overall star rating and number of reviews for each model on a single page. Many of the write-ups are detailed, covering design, features, quality, ease of use and overall value. Also, the page for each trimmer includes a handy summary of its most commonly cited pros and cons. The gas-powered Husqvarna 223L is the clear standout at this site, with rave reviews from more than 175 owners. Several Troy-Bilt gas trimmers get lackluster ratings.
Lawn Care Forum
by Contributors to GardenWeb.com
Our AssessmentOn the lawn care forum site, we found it easiest to use the search box, where we first entered "string trimmers" and got 316 threads -- a lot to sort through. However, you can also use a search term like "Echo string trimmers" if you want to research a specific model or brand. The discussion threads are quite useful, as the responses to the initial question are usually from people who have used the model or brand for some time. You can also post your own question.
Eco-Friendly Weedeater Comparison: Lehr vs. Grass Hog
by David Beaulieu
Our AssessmentIn this brief comparative review, About.com's guide to landscaping, David Beaulieu, compares two eco-friendly string trimmers: the Lehr propane-powered Eco Trimmer models and Black & Decker's cordless NST2018. This model is now discontinued, but an updated version, the NST2118, is available. He recommends Lehr's Eco Trimmer for professionals and for homeowners who need a powerful string trimmer that can handle tall grass and weeds. However, for the average homeowner, Beaulieu recommends the NST2018, which weighs less. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)
by Everett Snyder
Our AssessmentProduct tester Everett Snyder evaluates three string trimmers in this review. Of the three, the gas-powered Echo SRM-225i earns the highest marks: 8 out of 10 on performance and 7 out of 10 on value for the money. Snyder says that the SRM-225i's powered starting system makes it easier to start than other trimmers and concludes that this trimmer "appeals to both commercial and residential users alike." The Stihl FS 56 RC-E does not fare as well in testing, earning only 6 points for performance and 5 for value. Like the Echo, the Stihl starts easily, but Snyder says it has "rougher vibrations than some other models we've tested," and the bump feed for the string does not work reliably. The final model, the cordless Black & Decker NST2018, has since been discontinued.
Cordless String Trimmers
by Sal Vaglica
Our AssessmentSal Vaglica enlists readers with different levels of lawn care experience to test four cordless string trimmers powered by nickel-cadmium batteries. Each model is used to trim a variety of areas including front and back yards, walkways and flowerbeds. A brief review notes each trimmer's stats and highlights, but the article does not make any recommendations or any direct comparison among the tested trimmers.
Tool Test: Multihead String Trimmers
by Sal Vaglica and Quinton Guenther
Our AssessmentProfessional landscaper Quinton Guenther equips five gas-powered string trimmers with optional attachments that till, saw and cultivate. One of the models he likes, the Stihl KM 56 RC-E, is discontinued. However, two others, the Echo PAS-230 and the Husqvarna 128LDx, are praised for their performance on tall, wet grass. The article also evaluates a variety of attachments available for each trimmer.
Outdoor Power Equipment
by Contributors to GardeningClub.com
Our AssessmentMembers of the National Home Gardening Club test garden products in their yards and evaluate them. The site has reviews for three cordless trimmers and one multifunction gas-powered model. All four get good ratings, but the cordless Worx GT WG151 fares best, with 8.9 points out of a possible 10. Write-ups on the site are short, with just a summary of each trimmer's features and a couple of comments from users. It's also not clear just how reliable these comments are, since the manufacturer supplies the products to be tested, and only one product on the site receives fewer than 8 points out of 10 from users.
Landscaping Supplies: Lawn Care Equipment
by David Beaulieu
Our AssessmentDavid Beaulieu, About.com's guide to landscaping, covers three string trimmers in his reviews of lawn care equipment. Two of these, the propane-powered Lehr Eco Trimmer models and the cordless Black & Decker NST2018 (now discontinued), earn reasonably high marks. Another article, listed above, compares these two models directly. Beaulieu is less impressed with another cordless trimmer, the Weed Eater LT 20V, which he finds awkward to use and confusing to recharge. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)
by Contributors to NorthernTool.com
Our AssessmentThe owner ratings and reviews on this retail site include two features that are especially nice: asking the owner's level of experience and whether the owner would recommend this model to a friend. However, the reviews are generally short, and there aren't many of them. We did not find any string trimmers at this site with more than a handful of reviews.
by Contributors to AceHardware.com
Our AssessmentAbout two dozen gas and electric string trimmers are sold at AceHardware.com. However, we did not find any with enough owner reviews to make the average rating significant. Although the reviews are scant, they are fairly thorough, offering a list of each trimmer's pros and cons -- so this might be a helpful site to consult once you have narrowed down your choices.
Lehr Eco Trimmer Review
by Allyn Paul
Our AssessmentAllyn Paul has worked in the lawn-care and landscaping industry for decades and manages the marketing department at a large landscaping company in Chicago. In this video review, Paul tests the Lehr Eco Trimmer straight-shaft model by using it on his own property. He highly recommends it, saying it meets his two criteria for choosing green technology: It doesn't cost more than models with the same power that are more polluting, and its quality is just as high.
Lehr Eco Trimmer
by Dusty Overby
Our AssessmentThis is a single-product review of the Lehr Eco Trimmer ST025DC. Reviewer Dusty Overby doesn't specify which Lehr Eco Trimmer model he tested, but it can be identified from the photos and from links within the article. Overby highly recommends this trimmer, saying it is "every bit as powerful as my grizzled, commercial-grade Shindaiwa gashog" adding that it "incorporates all of the features that you'd expect from its gas-powered equivalent." He also notes that propane is both "cheap and clean."