When Autumn comes, all the leaves and other debris can leave your lawn looking messy and untidy. Not a while ago, leaf blowers and rakes used to be the yard cleanup tools of choice. But, you had to take on the arduous task of removing the enormous pile of leaves. Garden and lawn vacuums have come to change all that. A leaf vacuum picks more than just leaves. It can collect paper litter, twigs, small pieces of plastic, and all kinds of debris in every nook and cranny. Having said that, it's not easy to determine the best garden vacuum cleaners in the market. But, with our guide, you’ll have a clue of what to look for.
Things to Consider When Buying a Garden Vacuum Cleaner
Electric Vs. Gas Leaf Vacuums
Electric garden vacuums are quieter and easy to maintain. While they offer more convenience and are environmentally friendly, they are not as mobile as their cordless counterparts. That means they can only cover areas where there is access to a power source.
Gas-powered lawn vacuums, on the other hand, are ideal for covering a wider area in your garden in one go. They are also resistant to clogging, especially when pulling wet leaves and twigs. Since they are cordless, they are far more portable than electric models.
On the downside, they are heavy and can be quite loud. Plus, they emit fumes that can be irritating. Moreover, gas-powered leaf vacuums have an extra cost since they require regular maintenance.
You’d probably want to go for lawn vacuums powered by rechargeable batteries. Not only do they give you room to roam freely and cover larger ground, but they are also compact and easy to store. However, you'll need to buy a high-quality machine that can go for a prolonged period before it can be recharged.
When buying a leaf vacuum, look for the MPH (miles per hour) value. This number refers to how quickly air is suctioned into the machine through the tube. Most units run between 110 and 180 MP, although you can find others that can reach up to 250 MPH.
Most importantly, look for the CFM (cubic feet per minute) value. This refers to how much air moves through the vacuum within 60 seconds. In other words, it describes the power of the unit. CFM ratings range between 150 to 600. If you plan to be vacuuming a large area, it's advisable to invest in a higher CFM gadget. For a small yard, a 200 CFM unit may be all you need.
Best Garden Vacuums for Smaller Gardens
When vacuuming a small garden, you need a lightweight handheld or cordless vacuum for more convenience. If you buy a corded machine, you’ll need to consider the length of the cable so that you can easily cover your work area. A cordless unit like the Handy THEV3000 Electric Leaf Blower Vacuum may be ideal in such a case. You can also check out the Greenworks GMAX 40V Cordless Blower Vacuum.
Best Garden Vacuums for Larger Gardens
For larger gardens, a gas/petrol-powered vacuum may be the right choice since it has more power and will make your work easier and faster. Models like Webb BV26 26cc Petrol Vacuum or the Sherpa Petrol Leaf Blower Vacuum are great options. The Sherpa Vacuum has a three-edged mulching blade to cut up the leaves into fine pieces as they enter the collection bag.
You can also opt for backpack models for easy carrying when going about vacuuming your lawn.
Most lawn vacuums in the market also double up as leaf blowers, giving you more choices. For example, you can simply decide to clear the walkway by blowing away the leaves or vacuum your patio with the vacuum to completely remove the leaves.
Other models, like the Sherpa, offer the mulching option, which is great for repurposing leaves into a healthier plant bed.
Other units like the Bosch UniversalGardenTidy Electric Leaf Blower and Vacuum has a Shredder function that allows the unit to fit more debris into the collection bag. This model is powerful enough to dislodge wet leaves and is ideal for use in small and medium-sized gardens.
The advantage of using a leaf vacuum rather than a leaf blower is the added task of collecting the debris. A leaf vacuum mulches or shreds the leaves, meaning what would have taken six bags to fill when blowing, takes only two or three bags with mulch.
Lawn vacuums can sometimes be quieter than leaf blowers. However, it's important to cover your ears to avoid damaging them. Ear protection may not be necessary if you're using an electric vacuum, although you’ll need longer extension cords to move around the yard. If you go for a battery-powered vacuum, be sure to pick one with a higher battery capacity that can last longer on a single charge. You don’t want to be recharging after every five minutes of vacuuming.
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