Are you wondering how to choose a quality hedge trimmer? What is the best brand? What are the features that the perfect hedge trimmer should have and what functions should it perform? Don’t worry, on our website you will have all the information you need to choose the ideal hedge trimmer for your work. With a hedge trimmer you will be able to profile and prune your hedges, as they have an excellent cutting performance, as well as utilize all the functions and systems with which they are equipped. If you like to have your garden in the best conditions and enjoy even and decorative hedges, you need an electric hedge trimmer, with which you can cut your hedges comfortably and without effort.
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Important Factors in the selection of an electric hedge trimmer
Those who are passionate about DIY and have a beautiful garden to take care of cannot do without buying a hedge trimmer: a product suitable for both professional and domestic use that will allow you to prune your hedges with ease.
Although many people confuse the hedge trimmer with a brushcutter, these two tools have very different technical and structural characteristics. The main feature of the hedge trimmer, shown in the picture below, is the long serrated blade that allows you to work from different angles: the brushcutter on the contrary works mainly on the ground.
WattageThis measurement allows you to calculate the maximum power that the electric hedge trimmer can achieve. Knowing the wattage is a first fundamental step to understand which is the most appropriate product for the type of hedges to cut: depending on the size and thickness of the branches, you can opt for a more or less powerful model. Usually electric hedge trimmers have a power of about 600 watts, but clearly you can find models more or less powerful depending on the size of the product, the type of motor used and the speed of the cut. The more compact and handy ones, for example, have a maximum power of around 500 watts: keep in mind that a product with less power will be less versatile, and vice versa.
Cutting speedThis term means how many turns the blade can make in a given period of time, calculated in minutes or seconds. This data is closely linked to the wattage: greater power corresponds to a greater number of revolutions per second and therefore greater efficiency on thicker branches or thicker hedges. This value is also to be considered in relation to your needs: for those who want a more versatile product to cut the branches of different types of plants, we recommend a model that produces 3000 to 4000 rpm, while those looking for a simpler electric hedge trimmer can also buy less fast products. Keep in mind that this value is reported with different wording according to the manufacturers: number of revolutions per second and number of revolutions per minute are two different ways to describe the same value.
Cutting characteristicsThis factor is really important when choosing an electric hedge trimmer: the sword equipped with blades is the main component of these products. The different characteristics of the blades and sword make the various models on the market more or less suitable for possible uses and affect both the quality and efficiency of the product. In this factor we will therefore observe the length and thickness of the cut, as well as the distance between the blades.
Cutting lengthBy this term we mean the length of the sword: it is precisely the movement of the blades, shown in the picture below, which are positioned along the entire edge to allow the electric hedge trimmer to prune hedges and cut branches and twigs. A long sword allows you to work easily on hedges that extend in height, however, given the larger size, it will be more difficult to make precise cuts. On the contrary, a shorter sword allows for easier handling and greater precision, but it cannot be used for hedges or branches that are too high. For a higher price it is possible to find electric hedge trimmers on the market that have a telescopic sword, i.e. extendable: these models are however quite expensive and are mainly used in the professional field. In general, our advice is to consider the length of the cut in relation to your needs and especially according to the type of plants in the garden where you will be working.
By this term we mean the maximum thickness of the branch that the sword is able to cut: also this value must be evaluated by looking at your needs and the type of hedges you have to work on.
The most compact and economical models will have a cutting thickness between 15 and 20 mm, while in the highest performing models, this value can reach even 40 mm. The permitted cutting thickness is clearly related to the maximum power of the motor: to cut thicker branches, a higher wattage is required. We can therefore say that an electric hedge trimmer that allows a greater cutting thickness has more power: this makes it on the one hand more versatile, but on the other hand it takes up more space.
Integrated functionsAlthough the hedge trimmer is a fairly simple tool, even in this product you can find integrated functions that allow different possibilities of use, in addition to more safety. This has a great influence both on the price and on the overall quality: its evaluation is therefore less linked to personal needs. Our advice is to choose a hedge trimmer that offers a variety of safety features and allows you to work on both foliage and branches, in order to optimize your spending and have a versatile and efficient product. Let’s see in detail what is the saw function, quite common in electric hedge trimmers, and what safety features you can find in these devices.
Saw functionThis term refers to a special type of cutting that allows you to work not only on leafy hedges, but also on branches and small pieces of wood. This name of this function may seem wrong because to activate this mode, it is not necessary to press any particular buttons or insert additional pieces, however, this is the word used by manufacturers to indicate this specificity of some models of electric hedge trimmers. The saw function is made possible by special cutting teeth that are located on the front of the blade and that allow you to easily prune branches. It is important to keep in mind that even in the most professional hedge trimmers, they are meant for branches that are no more than 4 cm thick and have some flexibility: to cut harder trunks or branches it will be necessary to equip yourself with a chainsaw in any case.
Safety featuresSince the hedge trimmer is an electric device with multiple blades that move at high speed, it is essential that the product you buy is equipped with the highest number of safety features, so as to minimize the possibility of inadvertent injury while you are operating it. A cut caused by a hedge trimmer could be very dangerous. The most common safety features are:
- Automatic blade lock: this feature allows the blades to lock automatically after a few seconds of not using the hedge trimmer. This is very useful in long work sessions as it allows you to avoid having to switch the product off and on again every time you want to take a break.
- Hand protection: this term refers to a plastic component placed between the machine body and the blade. Its presence makes it easier to hold the hedge trimmer without the risk of inadvertently touching the moving blades and also provides useful protection against bits of branches and foliage. In some cases this add-on looks like a piece of transparent plastic, which allows you to see the hedge with precision and is definitely an advantage.
Although they are not real safety features, some additional accessories supplied in some cases can help to prevent unpleasant accidents: we are talking about the blade cover, best if made of steel, the protective mask, glasses and work gloves.
The blade cover is usually included in the hedge trimmer package and is a useful accessory, both to avoid the deterioration of the blade and to store the hedge trimmer in complete safety.
Glasses, goggles and gloves are often sold separately: if you are a do-it-yourself lover you probably already have these accessories, otherwise we recommend you buy them as their use is almost essential.
Practicality of use
The last factor to take into account when choosing an electric hedge trimmer is the practicality of the product: this aspect is fundamental because this tool must be kept on the shoulder for a long time.
It is therefore necessary to look for a hedge trimmer that is easy and comfortable to use, a factor to relate to the power and overall quality of the product. Let’s look in detail at the elements that make up this factor and make an electric hedge trimmer more or less practical.
- Weight: the weight of the product is an important aspect to keep in mind: a very heavy electric hedge trimmer will be difficult to use for a long time and will not be able to be lifted or moved easily, on the contrary a light hedge trimmer will allow you more precision in cutting and less effort. Also note that there is no direct correlation between weight and quality: thanks to technological evolution, the best products are able to combine high power and lightness.
- Cable length: As the hedge trimmer is a power tool, its operation is linked to the current. Most models have cables that are not too long: to work outdoors, especially in large open spaces, it will be necessary to purchase an additional extension cable.
- Starter switch: the presence of a switch that regulates the on/off of the hedge trimmer is very useful to slow down the deterioration of the integrated engine as it gives the appliance time to gradually switch off.
- Handle: this feature is really important as it will allow you to work with more precision and less effort: depending on the type of handle, an electric hedge trimmer will be more or less manageable. The best models have a double ergonomic handle, like the one shown in the picture below: a smaller handle positioned behind the body and a wider handle on the front with a specially designed shape to offer a safer and more stable grip. This allows you to hold the hedge trimmer with two hands, distributing the weight of the product over the whole body and thus allowing less effort. The materials in which these handles are made are also important: in many cases these components have an anti-slip membrane that allows you to grip the hedge trimmer more firmly (consider that when the product is in operation it emits vibrations).
- Fixed-cable hook: this hook, usually positioned at the back of the unit’s body, will allow you to attach the electric cable or extension cord to the appliance, as shown in the picture below, so as to prevent the wire from twisting or getting in your way.
- Noise: this last feature is quite important: the quieter the electric hedge trimmer is, the more possibilities you have to use it without having to wear protective earphones. A low noise level will also allow you to work without disturbing your family or neighbours.