What’s the difference between a string trimmer and an edger?
A string trimmer and an edger are 2 totally different animals. Let’s cover a bit of string trimming do’s and don’ts.
String Trimmers AKA Weed Whackers
With a string trimmer you have quite a bit of power under your finger. You just don’t need all of it. Sometimes, you’ll need full power for the long grass, like when you want to knock down a field of tall grass. In this situation, you’d want full throttle as it helps keep the weeds from binding up on the head. You might get some long weeds twisting around the head—it’s a pain, but it happens. A great approach is to feather the throttle (apply a light touch), when you’re trimming grass around objects. It’s never a good idea to go wide open throttle. If you wind the string trimmer up to its max RPMs, the string can grab the grass and pull the head down and cause scalping of the grass.
An edger is a small engine with wheels and a small single blade. Edgers are used to do exactly what the name implies: it cuts the edge of the driveway or sidewalk to give it a clean defined edge. Edger blades have various height adjustments so you can adjust the depth of cut at the edge of the driveway. Try setting the depth of cut a half-inch below the pavement edge. This cuts the overgrowth and leaves a small gap for water to drain down the edge.
You’ll waste some string (and it’s a bit of a workout), but you can achieve a similar result by turning your string trimmer head vertically, walking along the edge of the grass, and letting the string contact the pavement. This picks the grass off the edge of the pavement, helping to maintain any overgrowth. If you’re confident and have a good feel for the machine, you can keep bed edges clear the same way. Be careful though as any misstep can lead to scalped grass.
To keep cut grass out of mulch beds and off driveways, or limit the amount of grass in those areas, try walking backward in a clockwise direction. As the head spins counterclockwise, walking backwards in a clockwise direction will cause the grass to be thrown into the yard rather than the mulch bed or driveway.
That’s all for now! Keep the dust of your glasses and the grass off your … walkways!