Best Electric String Trimmers and Lawn Edgers Review Part 16: Advice to First Time Edgers
Large gauge extension cords. Electric lawn edgers consume large amounts of current and require a specific voltage to run properly. If the extension cord you use is too thin (i.e. the gauge number is too high) you may burn up the motor. The longer the extension cord, the thicker (the smaller number) the gauge. Unless you run really short extension cords, you should be looking at 12 gauge extension cords.
First time use is harder. After purchase, the first use is typically harder, as it is when you re-define you edges - afterwards, later passes are much easier: "we had not edged for a while [...] It took awhile to initially edge since we were cutting so much grass but it was well worth it","yard was a mess. The first time using it took a while, but that was because I was trenching the lines[...] Since then I've had clean lines and works easily", "I have also found the first edge of the season, or the first time you use it if you haven't ever edged your lawn, can be challenging for you and the edger - but after that this edger can help you maintain your clean edge with ease."
Do not use when grass is wet. Advice: "not to use it when the grass is remotely wet. When the grass is wet the part that you are edging the grass and dirt get caught between the blade and the cover", "Only use it when it is bone dry outside. If you try and use it after watering your lawn or after a rain mud will clump inside the edger and clog it up, resulting in you having to pull out large mud clumps from inside the edger every few feet."
Careful with rocks. A user writes: "Note to new edgers: Watch for rocks - if the blade sparks, you may be hitting a rock. DIG IT UP FIRST. [...] I got some goggles out, and whenever I hit a rock, I used a small garden shovel at that very moment to dig the rocks out from the immediate area in front of me and kept moving. I can't wait to edge it up again, it was enjoyable. Another note - edge shallow the first time, then go deeper later as you never know what's under your lawn edges."
Replacement blades. Do not forget to have them ready: "I recommend buying extra blades when you purchase one, you will soon need them."
Edging frequency. Do not go too long without edging: "You should try and edge like every third cut to make it an easy task."
Precision edging. Putting more weight on the front wheel makes it easier for precision turns, although not quite as stable on the straightaways: "I had a little trouble getting precision edge-lines [...] [A] three-wheel model works great on straight-away edges, but is harder to use on curves. I discovered that if you tilt the edger slightly forward onto the single front wheel, you can get much better control, and the tight curves are much easier."
Thick clumps/ Southern grass technique. Be ready to take a couple of steps backs when dealing with thick clumps: "When edging, try moving the edger forward about a foot or two, then pull it back, and then forward again about 2-3'. Repeat as you work. This gives smoother, sharper cut on the grass edge", " [St Augustine:] Some escape the first slice, but backing over them usually wins the battle."
Next we review good online information sources for electric trimmers and edgers... So come back soon!