Lawns are a labor of love, but that doesn't mean the labor has to be hard! String trimmers are hand-held or shoulder-mounted yard maintenance tools that use lengths of nylon string or metal blades to trim grass and weeds in hard-to-reach areas. String trimmers (also known as weed trimmers and weed whackers) are an essential lawn care tool for any homeowner looking to clean up otherwise unreachable areas like fence lines, yard boundaries and garden borders.
Aggressive, heavy-duty models can be expensive, but homeowners who only need occasional light grass trimming can easily find a quality model for under $100.
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The WORX® PowerShare string trimmer lives up to its name. The battery-powered string trimmer can transform into a wheeled edger and mini-mower. With seven handle adjustments and six rotating head settings, this model is the most adaptable string trimmer we've discovered and is maneuverable for people of all shapes and sizes. This string trimmer has a 12-inch cutting width, telescoping shaft and a weight of 5.5 pounds. The model comes with a 20V battery that charges in less than an hour, battery charger, wheels and three trimmer spools. Since the model retails for around $88, it's the best choice for light use around the house.
Black & Decker 20V Max LSTE525
Battery-powered string trimmers require charging and put a time limit on your grass cutting, but they can be taken anywhere and are lighter and quieter than gas-powered models. Unlike other string trimmers for under $100, the Black & Decker model converts to a wheeled lawn edger for cleaning up sidewalks and driveways. The model features an adjustable height and handle so it's easy for anyone to operate. It has a 12-inch cutting width and retails for around $87.
The Black & Decker model runs on a 20V max lithium-ion battery that is interchangeable with other Black & Decker tools. The model's 2-speed control allows you to boost power or extend the total runtime before needing to charge. The automatic feeding head handles light weeds and grass easily without clogging.
For the lowest price without sacrificing quality, choose the Homelite UT4113. At just $30, this corded electric string trimmer fits any homeowner's budget but still performs well on weeds and grass. Its 13-inch cutting width and 4-amp motor are better than many battery-powered models costing three times as much. A rotating shaft makes it easy to switch between trimming and edging. The 5-pound weight allows people with limited strength to use it easily.
The debris guard makes it difficult to see exactly what you are cutting, so this may not be the best choice for trimming around prized flowers or shrubs if you're worried about accidentally damaging them.
Quality gas weed trimmers cost well over $100. Most models below that price are plagued with bad design and engine problems. The only inexpensive gas string trimmer that can be found for less than $100 is the Troy-Bilt TB25C. Equipped with a 25cc engine and a curved shaft, the two-cycle engine provides more power than other models, and the ergonomic design has adjustable handle positions to reduce arm strain. It includes a two-year warranty and eight pieces of extra line. With a 14-inch cutting width, it can handle grass better than electric models, but some problems have been reported with the two interchangeable heads. This model is available for around $90.