A weed whacker, also called a weed eater or a string trimmer, is a tool used to trim grass around tight edges. It uses a flexible monofilament line instead of a blade, which is underneath a cutting head at the end of a long shaft. The lower part of the shaft may be replaced with other accessories such as a cultivator, a hedge trimmer, or a small chain saw. Weed whackers are required to get the areas that you can’t reach with a lawn mower to make sure your lawn looks neat and professional.
There are hundreds of different brands of weed whackers available. The Craftsman Weedwhacker is one of the best reviewed trimmers available. It has a cutting width of 14 inches and a fuel capacity of ounces. It also comes with a debris shield, trigger control, an adjustable handle with anti-vibration, and a four-cycle engine. It also allows for numerous accessories, such as a sweeper, blower, hedge trimmer, edger, and cultivator. Most manufacturers make these attachments, and almost all trimmers are universal and work with a multitude of brands, so feel free to choose your personal favorite brand.
Before you begin, examine your lawn for any debris such as large rocks or logs, and remove these objects before you start trimming. Some people prefer to mow their lawn before trimming, but it may actually be easier to mow if you trim first. Wear work gloves, ear muffs, and safety goggles, and strap the shoulder straps around your shoulders. Trim at a slight angle around concrete paths, steps, bushes, and other fixtures, and use the blade guard as a point of reference so you don’t damage or scuff anything. Turn the trimmer off using your thumb. If the string gets stuck or jammed, make sure you turn the trimmer off before you attempt to fix it.
Safety Features & Guidelines
Trimming your lawn can be dangerous if you don’t take several safety precautions. Always wear thick boots and pants to protect your feet and legs from flying grass, debris, and from the trimmer itself. You should also wear eye protection, because you may accidentally send small stones or other debris flying, which could seriously damage your eye. Try to wear tight-fitting clothing if you can, because loose clothing may get caught in the moving parts of the weed whacker. Periodically check the weed whacker for damage or wear, and make sure it has fresh gas in it. Only rotate the blade as fast as necessary, and stop the weed whacker right away if you see someone within 30 feet of you.
Pros & Cons
The biggest choice you have to make when it comes to trimming is whether you want an electric or gas weed whacker. Electric weed whackers are great for light duty maintenance and are inexpensive.
They are also very lightweight and much quieter than gas trimmers. They often come with a cable, however, which may not give you enough length to reach every area in your yard. Gas powered whackers don’t need an extension cord, and offer more power than electric trimmers. They are heavier and louder, however, and require extra maintenance, as you will need to change their oil and gas every so often.