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Hedge Trimmers: Which one should I buy?

hedge trimmer buyers guide

If you've ever had to cut your hedges with manual shears then you'll understand how truly blessed you are to have a hedge trimmer. Not only can hedge trimmers save you heaps of time, they can also prevent aching arms and ensure that you get a clean, neat, sharp finish to your hedge. The latest models are lighter in weight, easier to manoeuvre and more convenient than their predecessors and there are different models to suit different sized gardens and hedges. Well-trimmed hedges encourage healthy growth, provide a tidy border for your garden and can add structure or even a little fun to a garden design. Choosing the right tool to achieve this is about finding a compromise between the size of your garden, the type of hedge and your comfort.

BrandPower SourceWeightFeatures
Battery3.2kg 4-position articulating head
Battery4.1kgDiamond ground blade
Battery4.2kgIncludes blade sheath
Petrol 4.2kgQuality rubber shock absorbers
Petrol7kg5-position ergonomic rear handle
Battery6kg30° angled cutting head
Battery4.2kg4m extension shaft

Features

Power Handle

hedge trimmer power handle

The power handle is a relatively new feature, only found on recent models. This element is incredibly handy for large and intricately designed hedges, as it rotates for optimum user comfort whilst manoeuvring round the branches.

Power

hedge trimmer power source

Cordless trimmers use volts, ranging from 18V to 36V and petrol trimmers use CCs, ranging from 20cc to 40cc. If your hedges are tended regularly with thin branches, lower powered trimmers will be suitable. But if your hedges are dense, more strength is needed, so more powerful models will be needed.

Weight

hedge trimmer weight

It's important to take the tools weight into consideration. It's very likely that you will be spending long periods of time holding and lifting this tool, so you'll want to ensure that you are capable. Petrol trimmers are heaviest as they have the most power.

Teeth Spacing & Blade Length

hedge trimmer teeth and blade

The longer the blade, the more hedge you are able to cut. While this can be handy for larger hedges and minimising time spent working, it can also hinder manoeuvrability and increase the weight of the tool.

SGS hedge trimmers

Safety features

Hand guard

All blades come with a hand guard to prevent your hands from slipping onto the blade.

Blade cover

Keeps your blades safe while the trimmer is stored, preventing accidents. They also help to protect it against damage.

Dual safety switch

This is where you have to press and hold two power switches before the hedge trimmer will turn on.

Electronic/quick stop brake

A brake system ensures that once you stop the trimmer, the blades cease moving in moments, reducing risk of accidental injury.

Battery Powered

Battery powered strimmers are ideal for small to medium sized hedges, they have excellent manoeuvrability in part to the lightweight design and lack of cords restricting movements. Cordless hedge trimmers with higher-powered 36V batteries are beginning to rival petrol hedge trimmers. Batteries typically last around 30 minutes, but some will keep going for up to an hour. The best batteries recharge in about 90 minutes. If you have a larger hedge, think about buying a second battery to finish the job.

Ryobi OHT1850X 18v Cordless Extendable Hedge Trimmer

ryobi hedge trimmer

This trimmer is perfect complicated and hard to reach areas. It is efficient and reliable, a much preferred choice among gardeners. This tool features a 4-position articulating head and rotating rear handle keeping a similar great standard even when cutting in the highest spots or areas. The central trigger paves way for easier and more manageable tasks on its most extended position.

Weighing only 3.7kg the Ryobi OHT1850X is easy to use and very lightweight. Therefore, it becomes easier and simpler to reach top of even the tallest hedges in the garden. The 50cm blade and 16mm blade gap cuts through bushes and branches easily with hedgesweep™ technology for easy removal of clippings and debris.

Ryobi ONE+ OHT1855R 18V Cordless Hedge Trimmer with Hedge Sweep

battery powered hedge trimmer

The rotating handle, coupled with Ryobi's hedgesweep™ technology makes this the perfect tool for trimming awkward shapes or none conventional angles. The 55cm blade with 22mm cutting capacity is perfect at delivering powerful, accurate cuts that can trim through the toughest garden branches. If a particularly stubborn branch needs to be removed, simply focus the end of the blade on the branch and watch it fall away with simple ease with Ryobi's Bladesaw feature.

With the front loop handle, 5-position rotating handle and dual trigger controls, you'll be comfortable and safe as you keep up with your garden maintenance. Powerful, light and incredibly manoeuvrable, this tool is ideal for not only at home DIYer but serious garden enthusiast alike.

Ryobi OPT1845 ONE+ Pole Hedge Trimmer 

ryobi pole hedge trimmer

Rated as one of the best battery powered hedge trimmers, this tool is an ideal buy for every homeowner who needs to cut through branches and taller hedges with ease. Its fantastic lightweight design combined with the removable 230cm pole extension allows you to trim the top of hedges safely and efficiently without needing use of a ladder. The versatile 45cm blade allows clean cutting whilst the 18mm blade gap allows for cutting large branches easily.

Petrol Powered

Petrol powered hedge trimmers are much more powerful than their battery powered counterparts. However due to the excess power they are typically heavier. These tools are great for large hedges, especially those with thick branches. They do however have an air of convenience. with no cords to get in the way and no batteries that need recharging, they can take on tougher jobs faster.

Hyundai HYT2318 2-Stroke Petrol Hedge Trimmer

hyundai hedge trimmer

At just 4.2kg this hedge trimmer is one of the lightest petrol hedge trimmers on the market. Despite it's low weight and easy manoeuvrability, this tool is still very powerful, and more than capable of cutting through even the toughest of branches. High quality rubber shock absorbers, reduce hand and arm vibration making for a comfortable tool, even during extended use. Designed for both light and heavy DIY jobs, this trimmer is perfect for hedges, bushes and shrubbery. 

Powered by an impressive 2-stroke, air-cooled 23cc Hyundai engine, this tool provides remarkable cutting power and performance with a fuel primer system. Equipped with a 450mm (18”) cutting blade which is capable of tackling overgrown hedgerows, this piece of machinery is great for taming your bushes.

Ryobi RHT2660R 26cc Petrol Hedge Trimmer with Hedge Sweep

petrol hedge trimmer

This powerful 26cc Ryobi hedge trimmer is ideal for both professional and DIY applications. Unlike many typically petrol hedge cutters this carburettor engine boasts easy start technology to ensure simple use. Even the toughest of hedges and bushes are effortless to tidy up, thanks to the dual action twin reciprocating blades. This trimmer features a HedgeSweep attachment for efficient removal of clippings, minimising mess and time.

The 5 position ergonomic rear handle provides brilliant manoeuvrability and ultimate comfort - brilliant for long term use. Due to its 600 mm diamond ground blades as well as 28mm tooth gap, this tool can cope with bigger trees, branches and hedges- with a maximum cutting capability of 28mm.

Pruning Saws

A pruning saw is the perfect tool to fit between your chainsaw and hedge trimmer. The sharp blades can cut through branches, that are too tough for hedge trimmers but don't quite yet require the strength of a chainsaw. Pruning saws are ideal for those hard to reach branches, regular pruning keeps your plants healthy and tidy. It also encourages the production of buds to make flowers and fruit.

Ryobi RPP182020 ONE+ Cordless Pole Saw Pruner

pruning saw

This Ryobi cordless pole pruner has a 20cm Oregon bar and chain for efficient pruning and cutting, with high torque performance providing 5.5m/s chain speed. The extendable shaft boasts a reach of up to 4m combined with the 30° angled cutting head, allows for easy pruning and total control. The automatic bar and chain lubrication aid offers continuous cutting, without the need to stop.

Ryobi OPP1820 ONE+ 18V Cordless Pole Saw

ryobi pruning saw

This Ryobi pole saw delivers both durability and performance. With its extendable shaft that can reach up to 4 metres this saw can reach high branches with out the need for ladders or steps. It also features a unique feature of a tool-less chain tensioner which allows the chain tension to be quickly and easily adjusted for the best performance. Ideal for trimming those hard to reach branches in trees, bushes and even vines that can't be reached from the ground.

Still not sure which hedge trimmer to choose?

hedge trimmers

As well as designing our own range of tools, SGS engineering works closely with various suppliers to ensure we only stock the very best. Our in house experts are always on hand for buying advice and to provide bespoke care, regardless of the application. Whether you’re just starting out on a new hobby or you have complicated commercial requirements, we’ve got the in-house experts to help.

Call SGS on 01332 576 850 or fill out our contact form today. For all the purchasing advice and support you need.