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24 Jun 2022

5 ways to make your grass trimmer last longer

We’ve rounded up five easy tips to help prolong the life of your grass trimmer so you won't need to replace it early
Person using grass trimmer

With the correct usage and maintenance, a grass trimmer should be a long-term investment and last for years to come. 

A grass trimmer can be an essential part of any gardener’s tool menagerie. The best grass trimmers are ideal for neatening up lawn edges following a mow and are great for cutting back hard to reach grass without much hassle.

We’ve pulled together five things to consider when using or storing your grass trimmer to help keep it in tip top condition and avoid having to replace it - or parts of it - before its time.

If you think your trimmer is past it's best, check our grass trimmer reviews

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1. Avoid hard objects

Before you start trimming, remove any hard objects that the strimmer’s likely to come into close contact with. Think plant pots, ornaments, garden furniture etc. Also check for stray rocks or sticks.

Knocking into these things will likely cause the trimming line to break or, if it has a plastic or metal blade, cause it to blunt or break.

Some trimmers come with a plant guard - a wire hoop that pulls out or flips over the trimmer’s head. This shows you where the cutting line will reach to help prevent you inadvertently hitting things such as tree trunks or fences. On some trimmers, you’ll need to pull the guard out and put it into place so remember to do so and ensure you keep this up against the object, and be aware that if you swipe sideways you could still knock into things.

Learn how to avoid line-feed problems.

2. Don’t overestimate its ability

It’s easy to think your grass trimmer is invincible and can tackle all manner of things, but if you have tough weeds or really overgrown areas of brambles, you’ll end up breaking the line or breaking/blunting the blade. It could also cause the motor to overheat. 

It should be fine for long, overgrown grass but if your trimmer is pretty low powered, cut a little at a time and don’t bury the head in the undergrowth. Also clear away the trimmings as you go so it doesn’t tangle in the cutting head.

If your garden does have heavily overgrown areas, opt for a brushcutter over a strimmer. These have a multi-sided metal plate that spins at high speed. This is longer-lasting than a plastic blade or line but you must use these with extreme caution. Alternatively, employ a professional gardener to carry out this work for you.

Take a look at our heavy-duty grass trimmer reviews.

3. Take breaks

If you're trimming for a long period of time or cutting longer grass, the spool might get hot, causing the line to stick together and not feed through properly. Take breaks to give the strimmer a chance to cool down and work as efficiently as possible.

4. Clean it

Following every use, ensure you clean your grass trimmer before storing it. When you leave your strimmer over a long period of time without cleaning, dirt and cutting debris can easily build up in the head and clog up the line-feed mechanism. Also, like most products, the cleaner they are the more efficient they will be and the better they will perform.

Before cleaning, ensure it’s switched off and unplugged from the mains, if it’s an electric corded trimmer. If it's a cordless model, remove the battery. Also ensure it’s had a chance to cool down after use. 

Wear protective gloves and, using a soft brush, brush away any grass from the trimmer’s outer casing. Turn the trimmer over and remove any grass from under the guard and around the line feed or blades.

5. Store it correctly

Before your grass trimmer is put in the corner of your garden shed or garage for the cold winter months, make sure you prepare it properly. Following a good clean, use a light oil on any metallic surfaces to protect it from rust, then drain any excess petrol left in the fuel tank. You can do this by syphoning it into an appropriate container, or simply by starting it and leaving it run until it’s dry.

If it’s a cordless model, ensure the battery has at least 40% charge remaining and remove the battery from the strimmer and store it separately.

Once in your garden shed or garage, place it in a position which will prevent it from falling over (if not lying down).

Read our advice about how to buy the best shed