A weed whacker is used to trim overgrown grasses in tip-top shape. It is also known as a weed eater/trimmer; it is an integral device of lawn and garden maintenance. Weed whackers are not just used on overgrown grass alone; they can also be used to edge over your flower beds.
Weed whackers come in different power versions: which are mainly the electric and the gas-powered versions. In this article, we’ll discuss how to safely operate a weed whacker the right way.
Safety Tips to Operate a Weed Whacker
1. Always Wear Safety Kit
Working with a weed whacker can potentially cause some serious injury, especially when you touch the wire. Safety apparatus like sturdy shoes, gloves, and glasses should be worn to protect you when working with a weed whacker.
Sturdy and closed-toed shoes help to keep your feet safe from injury. Safety glasses are meant to shield your eyes and hands from flying fragments caused by the machine.
Finally, the safety gloves help to protect your palms and fingers from becoming sore when working with a weed whacker. You can also wear work pants or sturdy jeans for additional safety.
2. Don’t Use the Weed Whacker Over Hard Surface
Hard surfaces like rocks or hard objects can quickly wear down the cutting wire of your weed whacker. You can prevent this by clearing your work area from small/medium-sized objects that may wear off your machine.
Carefully operate your weed whacker around large rocks and objects that are too big to be removed. This would help to protect your nylon wire from damage that may be caused by such objects.
3. Keep Your Power Cable Safe When Using an Electric Weed Whacker
Avoid a working condition that would cut your power cable when working with an electric weed whacker. It may cause electric shock or possibly damage your machine. The ideal way to use the electric whacker is to ensure the power cable is kept behind you while working.
This position helps to minimize the chances of accidentally cutting the cable while working. Also, check how far the power cable can stretch out .before you start working with the weed whacker. Make sure the power cable can comfortably stretch as needed to complete the work. If it doesn’t, you may need an extension cord to get the job done.
4. Check Out For a Possible “Kill Switch” On Your Whacker
Most weed whackers are built with a trigger/throttle that a user can hold while operating the machine. Holding the throttle while working keeps the machine on, but releasing it would automatically shut the weed whacker off.
You may need to check the manufacture’s guide to locate the kill switch on your device. Or check to be sure if your weed trimmer has one. Some devices don’t have throttle; for such devices, ensure you understand how to turn it off before usage.
5. Operate Gas-Powered Weed Whacker in a Ventilated Space
Gas-powered weed whackers should be operated in a well-ventilated area to prevent taking in too many fumes. This is because weed whackers that run on gas produce dangerous emissions when in use.
These fumes are sometimes concentrated and can cause serious health issues when inhaled for too long. Fume isn’t associated with electric weed whackers, so you don’t have to worry much about the working environment.
Using the Right Method
1. Start the Device by Pulling Out Wire
Pull out about 6 inches of the wire and start the device. The 6 inches is the prime length to produce the best cutting power. If your cutting machine has a “kill switch,” you will need to hold it to start the device.
The electric weed whacker has an “On” button to start the device. But to start the gas-powered device, you will need to crank the starter cord. Make sure you always consult the manufacturer’s manual for specific instructions.
2. Put 1 Hand on the Handle and the Other on the Trigger.
This method is the safest and comfortable way to operate the machine without glitches. Always ensure the trigger end is kept at your waist level. You may stop and rest for a while if you experience any strain on your back or wrist while working.
Finally, if your weed cutting device has a shoulder strap, you can put it over both arms. The weed whacker should be clipped to the base of the strap to reduce the weight off your arms.
3. Keep the Device Head About 1 Inch Slightly Above the Ground
The weed whacker should not come in contact with the ground while you’re working with it. If it does, it may slice dirt along with the grasses and also wasting your cord. Try to maintain a little distance (1 inch) above the ground level to avoid such a scenario.
Make sure you maintain the same distance from the ground when working with the weed whacker. Otherwise, your trimming job may not be even. For cases where you want to level out the grass after trimming, use a lawnmower to complete the job.
4. Carefully Tilt the Device When Operating it On a Hard Surface.
When working on hard surfaces, tilt the device about 90 degrees on its side and firmly move it over the surface. Be firm with your grip, so you don’t mistakenly drop the device.
You can also keep moving the spinning wire over the hard surface to help you ace your trimming exercise. Moving the spinning wire helps to create a little gap between the surrounding plants and the surface.
5. Use the tip of the Wire to Cut
The nylon’s tip generates the strongest cutting force, which makes it effective at cutting plants. Avoid cutting large chunks of weed at once; cut them in a bit to overloading the engine.
Weed whackers should be one of your garden or lawn components if you want to maintain a well-kept garden. The device comes in handy during the spring and summer to trim off overgrown grass.
The electric weed whackers can be used at home regardless of how small the area is. This is because it doesn’t pose any risk to the user as long the power source is intact. But the gas-powered weed trimmer produces fume when in use. So it is recommended to be used in an open area to avoid exposing your lungs to the fume.