A perfectly trimmed hedge is the cornerstone of any garden but keeping on top of hedge maintenance can be hard work without the right tools. Hedges grow quickly, and if your hedgerows are a fair distance from your property, you will likely find using an electric mains-powered hedge trimmer a chore.
Thankfully, petrol-powered garden tools are readily available and provide a quick and efficient way to handle those larger gardening tasks. We’ve tested the best petrol hedge trimmers available to buy and can give you our verdict. Whether for a home garden or for tending a public garden, these trimmers will get the job done.
Best Petrol Hedge Trimmer Reviews
Petrol Hedge Trimmer Buying Guide
Petrol garden tools can seem daunting at first to those who are used to tools powered by electricity. Thankfully, petrol tools are more accessible and easier to use than ever so you should not be put off from buying one.
To help you along your way, we’ve put together this guide so you can buy the best petrol hedge trimmer for your garden.
Hedge Trimmer Comparison
Often the cheapest, mains powered electric hedge trimmers are common and readily available to buy. They vary in size and specification but often make a good entry into novice gardening.
The advantages are a lighter weight due to no battery, engine or fuel tank but of course you’re tethered to a mains cable which can be inconvenient depending on the layout and size of your garden.
Electric hedge trimmers usually aren’t as powerful as their petrol variants, but this may not be an issue for some gardeners.
Cordless hedge trimmers are electric models that are battery powered. The greatest advantage being unrestricted movement and no power cord to accidentally cut through.
They are slightly heavier than corded models, but lightweight lithium batteries are narrowing this gap.
On the flip side, some smaller batteries can provide short run times of up to an hour. Great for small gardens but not for those with several acres. If this is an issue, we recommend going for a hedge trimmer with a bigger battery.
Petrol hedge trimmers are powered by a small petrol powered engine. They are fuelled by a mixture of petrol and 2 stroke oil which can either be bought whole or mixed together yourself.
The petrol engine provides unmatched cutting power which makes petrol hedge trimmers the best for thick growth and large hedges. They’re also great for old hedges which tend to have strong, thick branches.
You might have noticed that professional gardeners and landscapers use petrol tools; this is the reason why.
Petrol Hedge Trimmer Features
The length of the blade is important as it affects how quickly you can trim any hedge. Trimming wide hedges is easier with a longer blade as you can create level surfaces and a flap top with a single pass rather than having to make several.
You can also reach the tops of taller hedges with a longer blade, preventing the need to climb too high on a ladder.
Hedge trimmer blade lengths range from 400mm to 700mm so buy the one most suited to the size of your hedges and garden. 400mm to 500mm is perfect for smaller hedges and gardens and above 500mm should be considered for larger hedges and gardens.
Blade Teeth Spacing
The spacing of each cutting tooth on the blade affects how thick a branch the hedge trimmer can cut. Wider gaps between each tooth mean the blade can cut through thicker branches and large hedges with anything 30mm or wider being best for older, mature hedges.
Smaller gaps such as 15mm or 20mm will be suitable for smaller hedges with limited growth as they shouldn’t require as much cutting power.
The size of your hedge trimmer’s motor or engine is directly related to its power output and performance. Larger motors have more power and make light work of heavy-duty trimming tasks. This includes cutting brambles and other types of thick growth and woody weeds.
Its important to note that larger motors also use more fuel. In practice this difference will be small but its something to bear in mind. Larger engines also weigh more so balance these characteristics to find a hedge trimmer suitable for your needs.
Engine capacity is always measured in cubic capacity or cubic centimetres (cc).
Handling & Ease of Use
Power tools can be heavy which can cause fatigue to set in before you’ve finished gardening. This is especially true of hedge trimmers because they need to be held at high level to cut a hedge properly.
For this reason, you want to buy the lightest hedge trimmer you can find which will let you trim for longer. The bigger your garden, the lighter your petrol hedge trimmer needs to be.
There are of course risks to using any power tools. While not as dangerous as a chainsaw, petrol hedge trimmers still need to be treated with care.
Most hedge trimmers come with several safety features built in such as a kill switch for emergencies and a trigger system that only works when held down.
Look for other features such as wrap around handles for better grip and ergonomics, so you have more control over the trimmer while cutting.
As a final point, we strongly recommend wearing ear protection when using any petrol powered garden tool. This will prevent hearing damage and loss.