If you have a lot of yard to look after, a lawnmower won’t be enough to keep your garden neat and tidy. That’s where brush cutters come in: they are super versatile and easily cut through even the thickest vegetation. If you’re looking for a tool that can help you keep thick brush and weed growth at bay, keep reading!
- Important Factors to Consider When Shopping for a Brush Cutter
- Top 6 Best Brush Cutters 2023
- Buying the Best Brush Cutter
- FAQs About Brush Cutters
- Other Things You May Need to Safely Use Your Brush Cutters
- Final Thoughts
Important Factors to Consider When Shopping for a Brush Cutter
There’s a lot to consider before buying the best brush cutter for you. In the following section, we’ll discuss the benefits of using a brush cutter, the different types of brush cutters there are to choose from, the differences between electric -and gas-powered cutters and the most important features to consider.
Benefits of Using a Brush Cutter
Brush cutters are a great tool to invest in if you have large outdoor spaces. Not only are they durable and extremely tough, but they are also motor-powered by gas or battery, allowing them to cut through thick brush and overgrowth with ease.
It may seem like an unnecessary addition to your tool shed (especially if you already have loads of gardening tools), but you’ll find that brush cutters are quite unique in how they perform. They are so multipurpose (i.e. mowing, tapering, weeding and scything), you might end up selling off some of your old tools because the brush cutter does the job better!
Types of Brush Cutters
Handheld: If you need something that’s not too large, this is the best type of brush cutter for you as they are the smallest type. Handheld brush cutters have large engines and thick lines that easily cut through overgrown weeds, small saplings and grass.
Walk-Behind: These brush cutters look like lawnmowers. They are a great option for people who need to complete large garden projects in less time.
Tow-Behind: These kinds of brush cutters also look like lawnmowers. They are different from walk-behind brush cutters because you have to tow it behind a moving vehicle for it to work properly.
Electric vs. Gas-Powered Brush Cutters
Electric brush cutters are powered by plugging them into an extension cord or with rechargeable battery packs. Because gas-powered cutters are so popular, it is often difficult to find ones that run on battery. They also don’t run as long or as powerfully as gas-powered cutters. Gas brush cutters, on the other hand, can work anywhere and are not limited by how close you are to an electrical socket. As stated before, they are also more powerful, so you can be sure to cut through thick weeds, grass and small saplings with little to no trouble.
What to Look for in a Brush Cutter
In the following section, we’ll talk about the most important features to consider before buying the right brush cutter for your gardening needs.
How Durable It Is
The most important areas to check for durability on a brush cutter will be the blade and shaft. In particular, it’s the material of the blade and formation of the shaft you need to check out. Blades made with tough metals should be able to stand up to difficult tasks. However, since brush cutters are made to cut through thick foliage, it won’t be too difficult to find one that will work for the long haul.
What Terrain It Works On
The most important thing to look for here in a brush cutter is one that can work properly in different types of terrains. This will ensure that you can use a single brush cutter on your entire garden.
How Powerful It Is
If you’re looking for a brush cutter to do general work around the garden (i.e. trimming, cutting back small patches of weeds, etc.), then a medium-powered one will be more than enough. A battery-powered brush cutter would work well in this case. If, however, you need something with a bit more power that can handle larger projects, you’ll want to choose a brush cutter that runs on gas. A warning for newbies: using too much power can make using a brush cutter more dangerous, so make sure you are comfortable using this kind of tool before taking on longer, more challenging projects.
How It Handles
Brush cutters can be one or two-handed. One-handed cutters have loop handles while two-handed cutters have handles that look like bull horns. Make sure you choose one that has a sturdy handle and a harness for your general safety. If you’re mainly doing heavy-duty projects that take lots of time, it is better to buy a two-handed cutter. This is because two handles help you maintain the most control of the cutter when it’s in use.
Vibration is another factor to consider in how well you can handle the cutter. Many products will include features that reduce vibrations, making it more comfortable to hold and more steady when cutting through thick growth.
What Attachments Are Included
Most brush cutters will be multipurpose. Meaning, they will be able to handle a variety of gardening tasks. They may even replace some tools you already have in the shed! Beyond this, you may want to consider purchasing a brush cutter that comes with additional attachments (e.g. string trimmers, hedge trimmers, etc.). If you’re gardening mainly at home, this is a more economical choice as it will mean you don’t have to buy a separate tool for each job.
Now that you know what to look for, we’re going to take you through the best brush cutters around.
Top 6 Best Brush Cutters 2023
1. Best Overall Brush Cutter: PROYAMA 5-in-1
- Weight: 30.8 pounds
- Dimensions: 63″× 13″× 11.9″
- Motor/Power: 2-Stroke, Gas
The PROYAMA 5-in-1 runs on an EPA-certified gas-powered engine. This means that it will discharge less gas while it’s being used and cause less pollution. It starts up easily and has an emergency stop button in case you run into any issues while you’re working.
In addition to the brush cutter, your purchase comes with a variety of added attachments: hedge trimmer, pole saw, and string trimmer. A vibration reduction shoulder harness, ear defenders, gloves and face shield is also provided for your protection. If that’s not enough, you’ll also get an extension metal blade, pronged metal blade, mixing bottle, chainsaw bar carrier and tool kit.
You may find yourself using the brush blades more often than the string trimmers. The trimmers have a difficult time auto-feeding, and some users have found setting them up too difficult. Other users have stated that some of the included tools did not come in the original shipping. If you run into any of these issues with your tools, you can contact customer service via Amazon email, and they’ll get back to you within 24 hours.
- Discharges less gas that other brush cutters
- Comes equipped with an emergency stop button
- Comes with additional yard tool attachments and protective gear
- Customer service will address your concerns within 24 hours
- Trimmers have difficulty auto-feeding and are challenging to set up
- Some tools may not come in the original shipment
- Weight: 13 pounds
- Dimensions: 39” x 12” x 11”
- Power Source: 2-Cycle, Gas
The Craftsman 2-Cycle brush cutter is powerful and easy to use: with a 2-cycle engine that reduces vibration and a straight shaft design that makes hard-to-reach areas easier to trim, you’ll be able to keep your lawn looking beautiful! It’s also quick to start in just three simple steps.
Like the PROYAMA 5-in-1, the Craftsman 2-Cycle can be used with TrimmerPlus and other compatible yard tool attachments (e.g. blower, hedge trimmer, etc.). Some users have found that the nuts were difficult to loosen when the tool needed adjusting. This is easily solved with a ratchet/socket combo. Others have stated that changing from the string cutter head to the metal blade was challenging. Make sure to keep any tools needed to lock the mechanism stored away safely.
The blade has an 18” cutting width and made with a heavy-duty metal that can cut through the thickest growth. It also comes with an adjustable J-handle and shoulder strap that gives you better control and helps you work for longer without tiring out too quickly. If that’s not enough, this cutter can stand up well to the elements, making it extremely durable and reliable.
- 2-cycle engine reduces vibration
- Can be used with other attachments
- Straight shaft design can cut in hard-to-reach areas
- Heavy-duty 18” width blade cuts through thick growth
- Adjustable J-handle and shoulder strap helps with control and reduces fatigue
- Nuts can be difficult to loosen at times
- Changing between string cutter and metal blade can be challenging
- Weight: 14.5 pounds
- Dimensions: 11.25” x 12” x 37”
- Power Source: 2-Cycle, Gas
Like the Craftsman 2-Cycle, the Remington Ranchero has a straight shaft design for you to better reach those more difficult areas of the yard that need trimming. It’s easy to power on with its smooth pull starter. Just be sure to use an ethanol-free fuel that is mixed with oil or buy one that’s pre-mixed.
The Remington Ranchero has an 18” wide cutting blade made with heavy-duty metal, and the adjustable J-handle and shoulder strap helps you maintain excellent control over the cutter. It is also compatible with TrimmerPlus and other compatible attachments like blowers, hedge trimmers and cultivators. Some users have found it difficult to switch between the brush cutter blade and trimmer head without the appropriate tools as the nuts are extremely difficult to loosen. You may also need to hammer the shaft rod into place as it is quite thick.
- Easy to power on with a smooth pull starter
- Compatible with other yard tool attachments
- 18” wide blade is made with heavy-duty metal
- Adjustable J-handle and shoulder strap helps you maintain control
- Straight shaft design makes it easy to reach difficult areas in your garden
- May need to hammer the shaft rod into place
- May be challenging to switch between brush cutter blade and trimmer head
4. Best Budget Brush Cutter: SunSeeker 4-in-1
- Weight: 28.8 lbs.
- Dimensions: 11.5” x 11” x 70”
- Power Source: 2-Cycle, Gas
When you purchase the SunSeeker 4-in-1, you’ll not only get a brush cutter; you’ll also get a string trimmer, hedge trimmer and pole saw! Each attachment has a universal connection which means that you can use them with various brands of brush cutter tools. Just be sure to check that the attachments have sockets that are compatible with the main, star-shaped one.
The full-shaft crank design ensures that the exhaust on the brush cutter releases less fuel, increasing its fuel efficiency and making it last for longer. It’s also super easy to power on with a simple, 5 step process. The SunSeeker brush cutter comes with an aluminum support that helps reduce vibration and makes it easier to control. However, some users have found it harder to maneuver because of its comparably heavier weight to other brands.
- Easy to power on in five simple steps
- Comes with three additional tool attachments
- Aluminum supports reduce vibration and make it easier to control
- Full-shaft crank design releases less fuel and increases efficiency
- Main socket only compatible with star-shaped shafts
- Heavier than other brush cutters and may be hard for some to maneuver
- Weight: 21 pounds
- Dimensions: 41.5″ × 11.5″ × 11.25″
- Power Source: 2-Cycle, Gas
Because the engine is made with an EPA-certified engine, you can be sure that the PROYAMA 2-in-1 will release less fuel when it is in use, causing less pollution. The engine is also super easy to start without compromising on overall power.
The double shoulder strap and handlebar design means that you can maneuver the tool with ease and comfort. It also has a quick release split shaft which means you can transport and store it more easily. If that’s not enough, you’ll get ear defenders, gloves and a face shield to keep you safe while you work. The only downside is that it is quite heavy, making it harder for some users to maintain control over for long periods of time.
Be careful when using this tool in rocky areas as some users have said that accidentally hitting the brush blade against rocks can damage the guard. Should you run into any issues with your brush cutter, however, the PROYAMA 2-in-1 does come with a one year warranty. Customer service should get back to you within 24 hours of filing a complaint.
- Comes with 1-year warranty
- Made with EPA-certified engine that discharges less gas
- Engine starts easily without compromising its overall power
- Double shoulder strap and handlebar makes it easy to control
- Quick release split shaft makes it easy to transport and store away
- Heavier than other comparable products
- Brush blade guard may damage if used in rocky areas
- Weight: 21.61 pounds
- Dimensions: 37.4” x 11.61” x 12.2”
- Power Source: 2-Stroke, Gas
The Blue Max Extreme Duty comes with a bump and feed string trimmer head, so you can edge and trim your garden with one tool. Though the brush cutter can handle small weeds, lawn grass and softer vegetation, it is not equipped to handle thick vegetation or wet grass.
This cutter has an EZ start recoil system, making it easy to power on, and its aluminum anti-vibration handle ensures that you are comfortable and in control while you work. The motor is also quite powerful and doesn’t use much fuel, so you can get through your garden tasks in no time. However, because the motor is so powerful, the overall weight of the brush cutter is quite high.
- Powerful motor uses less fuel
- EZ start recoil system is easy to power on
- Comes with a bump and string feed trimmer head
- Can cut easily through small weeds, lawn grass and soft vegetation
- Aluminum anti-vibration handle keeps your comfortable while you work
- Heavier in weight than other comparable products
- Cannot cut easily through thick vegetation or wet grass
Buying the Best Brush Cutter
There are many things to think about before you buy a brush cutter. In this section we’ll review the important features to look for in a brush cutter. Then we’ll discuss how to safely operate and care for one. We’ll also answer some common questions people have about brush cutters and share a list of other gardening gear you may need to use a brush cutter safely.
Important Features to Look for in a Brush Cutter
The following section is a quick review of the most important factors to consider before buying a brush cutter:
- Durability: Check the blade material and the shaft formation on the blade cutters for durability. Blades made from tough metals should be able to stand up well to long-term use and hard work. Most brush cutters are made to cut easily through thick growth, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find one that is super durable.
- Terrain: Think about the kind of terrain around your garden before buying a brush cutter. It’s best to choose a cutter that can work effectively across a variety of terrains. This ensures that your cutter won’t be limited to just one section of your yard.
- Power: electric-powered cutters are an excellent choice for general gardening work like trimming, cutting weeds, etc. If this is what you’re looking for in a cutter, a battery-powered one would be powerful enough for your needs. If, however, you need something that can work more powerfully and for longer periods of time, you should choose a gas-powered cutter. If you’re new to using brush cutters, be sure to get comfortable with the tool first before using it on higher powers.
- Handling: Again, if you’re looking for a cutter for smaller, less time consuming garden work, a one-handed brush cutter should suit your needs. If, however, you need something for heavy-duty, long-term projects, a two-handled cutter would be better as they help you maintain better control over the tool. You might also want to choose a brush cutter that reduces vibrations to make long-term use more comfortable on your hands.
- Attachments: Home gardeners should consider purchasing brush cutters that come with additional attachments like hedge cutters and string trimmers as this is a more economical choice for completing a variety of landscaping tasks. However, it is important to note that most brush cutters can handle a variety of tasks on their own without additional attachments.
How to Safely Operate a Brush Cutter
Watch the following video for tips and tricks on how to safely and efficiently use your brush cutter.
How to Care for a Brush Cutter
It is important that you regularly sharpen the blade of your brush cutter every few months to keep it from going blunt. This will ensure that your cutter will continue to properly weed, mow and taper around your garden! You won’t need to go to any specialist to sharpen the blades as you can do it right from the comfort of home. Before you begin, make sure that your device is switched off and/or unplugged and be sure to have the proper equipment needed to sharpen your blades safely:
- Wash the blade with warm, soapy water.
- Angle the blade and line it up on your sharpening tool of choice.
- Drag the sharpening tool across the blade.
- Repeat this process until the blade is sharpened to your preference
FAQs About Brush Cutters
What Are Brush Cutters?
Though brush cutters look similar to weed eaters, they tend to weigh more, are more powerful and use metal blades instead of nylon strings. They are also called clearing saws, brush saws or weed destroyers. Because they are so powerful, they are used for heavy-duty trimming, weed removal and treebase grooming that a lawnmower may miss.
Why Are Brush Cutters Useful?
People use brush cutters when they need to work across a large outdoor space. They are durable, extremely tough and super powerful. So if you have long-term garden projects and/or heavy-duty work to undertake, brush cutters are an excellent choice.
What Kinds of Brush Cutters Are There?
There are three main types of brush cutters: handheld, walk-behind and tow-behind. Handheld brush cutters are the smallest kind and work best to cut through overgrown weeds, small saplings and grass. Walk-behind cutters look like lawnmowers and are great for large scale garden projects. Tow-behind cutters also look like lawnmowers, but they work by being towed behind a moving vehicle.
What Kind of Fuel Should I Use for a 2-Cycle, Gas-Powered Brush Cutter?
Two-cycle engines run on a mixture of gasoline and oil. This ensures that the crankshaft and piston stay well lubricated. You can of course mix this yourself, but you can also purchase it premade. For more information on this, check out this article.
What’s the Difference Between 2-Stroke and 4-Stroke Brush Cutters?
Gas-powered brush cutters have either 2 or 4-stroke engines. The main difference between them is how they run. Four-stroke cutters weigh more and run cooler; a 2-stroke cutter tends to stay more balanced because it has a more even power stroke in comparison. They are also more affordable, easier to maintain and take up less storage space.
How Are Brush Cutters Different Than String Cutters?
It is easy (and often not surprising) when people confuse brush cutters with string cutters. They look really similar at first glance. However, they differ vastly in how they work and what they can handle in your garden. String trimmers use nylon cords to cut through foliage while brush cutters use metal blades. Brush cutters can handle cutting through larger, thicker vegetation.
Other Things You May Need to Safely Use Your Brush Cutters
Keep your hearing intact while working with noisy, high-powered tools by wearing protective earmuffs.
Protective glasses keep dust, dirt and other flying debris from getting into your eyes and causing irritation or damage. You can even find protective glasses that have UV protection if you live in a particularly sunny place.
Protective gloves (especially ones made with leather) help to reinforce your overall grip while working with powerful tools in the garden. Not only that, but they protect your hands from cuts and scars and keep them from developing too many callouses.
Now that you know more about what to look for in a brush cutter, you’ll be sure to find the best one for you!