Buying the right tools – Part 2

As said in our previous blog, there is a big difference between different sorts of Lawn Mowers as well as Whipper Snippers. Today, we will discuss the different styles and who will benefit from them.

When it comes to petrol lawnmowers, there are two different main types: rotary and reel. Both types come with pros and cons. However, for the average homeowner, we would recommend the use of a rotary style. This is because they are cheaper, lighter and more mobile. The main con of a rotary lawnmower is that you have to push them to mow the lawn; if your lawn isn’t too large and you do not have to mow it all the time, then this shouldn’t be too much of an issue (some people enjoy it for the exercise).

The advantages of a reel lawn mower are that they are more reliable, they push themselves along instead of you pushing them, and they produce a neater cut. This is why every lawn mowing business to our knowledge uses a reel mower as its primary mower and a rotary for smaller, tighter areas. The disadvantages of reel mowers are the purchase cost (if you are buying one just for the home we would say to purchase one-second hand), the poor maneuverability and the weight; they are too heavy to carry upstairs, so you will need a ramp. At Western Property Care, we use a Briggs & Stratton for our rotary mower and a Masport for our reel.

When it comes to Whipper Snippers – or Line Trimmers – there are three different options: electric (battery and corded), two strokes or four strokes. Electric Whipper Snippers are the cheapest but are by far the least powerful and reliable. We don’t recommend electric, even for a small home. If cost is an issue we would say to buy a cheaper petrol Whipper Snipper than an electric one; Bunnings sell them here brand new from around $100. The main differences between 2 and 4 stroke are cost, power, fuel efficiency and pollution. In short, four strokes engines last longer and use a lot less fuel and oil; they also produce far less pollution. However, they require regular services, are more expensive to buy and produce less power.

Once you have chosen the engine, you have one more choice to make: bent shaft or straight shaft. We only use straight shafts as they are designed for heavier duty jobs. However, the bent shaft offers easier use and higher maneuverability, making it more appealing to people carrying an injury, for instance, or the elderly. At Western Property Care, we use a four-stroke Makita as well as a two-stroke Stihl, both with a straight shaft. The four strokes are used for all lawn jobs, while we have the two strokes for heavier jobs that require the extra power.

Please note, this is all general information. If you would like to speak with a professional, please get in contact with us today as we are always happy to help.

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