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Don't Buy hedge trimmers

by Adele Dyer

Don't Buy hedge trimmers struggle to cut through hedges, leave ragged, chewed branches and are tricky to use. Avoid these hedge trimmers.

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Hedge trimmers should take the hard work out of cutting your hedge. But we've found some that don't have the power to cut through even thin branches, leaving you with a messily-cut hedge. Find out how our expert lab tests separate the hedge trimmers you should avoid from those recommended as Best Buy hedge trimmers

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What makes a Don't Buy hedge trimmer?

Hedge trimmers are designed with one simple job in mind - to cut through a hedge quickly, efficiently and neatly. But we see too many hedge trimmers that either can't cut even the thin stems of a hedge or take a very long time to do this. On top of this, too many are awkward and uncomfortable to hold, or heavy and noisy. 

On the plus side, we've also found many hedge trimmers that make light work of even tough hedges with thick branches. They have the power to cut through stems rapidly, meaning you spend less time cutting your hedge. They also cut cleanly, leaving your hedge looking neat and reducing the risk of disease entering through the cut stems. 

How we test hedge trimmers

We've tested all the most popular hedge trimmers, including models from Bosch, Black & Decker and Stihl, to help you find the best one for your garden. Our rigorous tests mean we can recommend hedge trimmers that will cut quickly and efficiently, leave a neat finish and be a joy to use. 

  • We cut laurel, privet and conifer hedges to see how well hedge trimmers cut through tough and wood, thin and spindly and stringy stems.
  • We time how quickly they cut and rate them for how neatly they cut the hedge. We also assess how easy and comfortable they are to use.
  • Cordless hedge trimmers batteries can run down quickly and take a long time to recharge. Petrol hedge trimmers can be heavy, noisy and hard to start. We assess all of these factors to discover everything that makes a difference to how easy hedge trimmers are to use.

Find out which hedge trimmers are Don't Buys and which are Best Buys by joining Which? today