ABC Of Power Garden Tools – Complete Guide (2022)

Without controversy, power garden tools make most garden chores easier, and they have been with us for quite a while. Yet it’s interesting to note that many of us know so little about this group of tools.

One of the most popular tools in this group is the lawn mower. However, there are newer and more improved ones being produced like the cultivator, the lawn blower, the powered rake, and so on…the list is endless.

Power Garden Tools

With all these powered tools being produced by manufacturers at about the same rate as computers, it’s not a surprise that you feel so old-fashioned when you use some of your manually operated tools.

This is even worse if your kids are self-appointed sales agents of these manufacturers who by the way have so many alluring ads…Don’t blame your kids. After all the ads are supposed to make you want to buy…

I guess many times, you felt that “need” to buy, and you would have but for a few nagging questions like, “…do I need a power garden tool for every garden chore?” “…Is a powered rake better than my old-fashioned landscape or leaf rake simply because it has a battery?” “…are the benefits gained from power garden tools worth the extra cost of purchase and maintenance?”

Not easy questions to answer at all.

So many gardeners have hurried off to buy a power garden tool after seeing a beautiful sales ad. Later on, they feel “stuck” with the tool, not to mention deceived, when they find out that the extra cost of maintenance(electricity bills, fuel bills, routine engine maintenance….) far outweigh the so much sought-after benefits…

However, this is not true for all power garden tools. Some offer tremendous advantages. My favorite is the lawn mower without which I wonder what would happen to our lawns.

My advice to you is this…

Don’t get a powered rake simply because it’s a powered rake. If you’re doing just fine with your landscape or leaf rake, “STICK TO IT”.

Reserve power garden tools for tasks that are too difficult or impossible to do without them. e.g A chainsaw to cut down a tree.

Make a detailed list of benefits expected and compare against a detailed list of cost implications. Be convinced that the benefits far outweigh the costs before you buy.

…and don’t forget to interview those who already own one.

So far we have talked about the *WHY* of power garden tools. Now let’s briefly talk about the *WHAT*.

DEFINITION Power garden tools are garden tools that need alternative sources of energy in order to work.

There are 3 basic types based on their energy requirements.

  • Fuel powered – Those in this group require petrol/gasoline, or diesel to be able to function.
  • Electricity(AC) Powered – These usually have a cord that connects them to the mains.
  • Battery(DC) Powered – These usually have a rechargeable battery that powers them.

Why You Should *WAIT* And Not Buy Impulsively

I mentioned this earlier but now, I’d like to explain a bit more. …there are so many reasons why you should… “look before you leap”

  • You don’t want to leap first and then find out that you were better off where you were before.
  • You don’t want to leap into the open mouth of a crocodile
  • You don’t want to leap and find out that there’s no landing pad…

I could go on and on but I don’t want the label of a pessimist so I’ll stop there.

I’m just trying to be the most impartial garden tools guide you’ll ever read.

Sorry for that digression. Just had to blow my trumpet a little.

So we were discussing “looking before leaping”. Right?

Before you ever buy any power garden tool, there are so many facts you need to know that will help you make the right decision.

All power garden tools cost more than their corresponding manual tools.

The cost of maintenance is also higher than that for manual tools.

The very cheap power garden tools are usually not of high quality and often give a lot of trouble when bought.

On the other hand, the very expensive ones are not necessarily the best. Or the extra advantages offered are not worth the extra cost. So… … it is better to buy middle-range tools.

Jobs like mowing the lawn, trimming the hedge, and sawing down trees are better done with power garden tools.

On the other hand, jobs that require a great deal of variability are better done with manual tools. e.g transplanting, weeding a nursery, bulb harvesting, etc

for more details please read our buyer’s guide.

Advantages Of Power Garden Tools

Power Garden Tools offer some unique advantages based on the type used. However, they generally offer the following advantages.

  • They make garden jobs easier, making you exert yourself less and sweat less.
  • They make garden jobs faster, giving you more time to do some other things you consider interesting.
  • Many times, they do a better job than manual tools. But this is only true for jobs that involve just one basic task like cutting. e.g a lawn mower that just has to cut grass at a preset height is better than cutting the grass with a cutlass.
  • They produce extra power and so are suitable for demanding jobs like cultivating.

Disadvantages Of Power Garden Tools

As you will agree with me, these tools are not without their disadvantages.

  • They make a lot of noise. Especially the fuel-powered ones. If you don’t think so, ask your neighbor.
  • They cost much more than manual tools.
  • They also cost more to maintain than manual ones.
  • They cause more garden accidents most of which can be avoided if proper care is taken. please read our safety tips section.