3 Best Gas Powered String Trimmers (2022 Guide)

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Last updated: June 30, 2022

If you’re looking for a powerful, reliable, and long-running string trimmer, then gas can be a great choice. Despite a market saturated with corded and electrical options, there are still quite a few gas weed eaters to choose from.

To help you cut through the noise and find an option that will work for your needs without breaking the bank, I’ve put together this short list of reliable gas-powered string trimmers.

The top three models are noted for their durability, ease of use, and ability to deliver results without costing a fortune. And to help you decide between these three great choices, I’ve also included a handy gas-powered string trimmer buyer’s guide.

Top Pick
Ryobi RY253SS 25cc Straight Shaft 18"...
Second Choice
Husqvarna 128LD 17" Cutting Path...
25 CC 2-cycle engine
28 CC 2-cycle engine
18 inch width
17 inch width
Straight shaft
Straight shaft
Top Pick
Ryobi RY253SS 25cc Straight Shaft 18"...
25 CC 2-cycle engine
18 inch width
Straight shaft
Second Choice
Husqvarna 128LD 17" Cutting Path...
28 CC 2-cycle engine
17 inch width
Straight shaft

Top 3 Gas String Trimmers:

Gas String Trimmer Price
1 Ryobi RY253SS 2-Cycle Gas Trimmer Price
2 Husqvarna 128LD Gas String Trimmer Price
3 Coocheer 2-in-1 Gas Powered Weed Eater Price

Top 3 Gas String Trimmers

Let’s have a more detailed look at these three gas-powered weed eaters.

Prefer a battery trimmer? Read my guide with the best battery-powered string trimmers for some great options.

Leaning towards an electric version instead? Check out my list of best corded electric string trimmers with reviews of good and affordable models.

1. Ryobi RY253SS 2-Cycle Gas Trimmer

Ryobi RY253SS 2-Cycle Gas Trimmer

When it comes to features, power, and ease of use, the Ryobi RY253SS 2-Cycle Gas Trimmer tops our list of best gas string trimmers.

This 25 CC 2-cycle weed wacker features a full crankshaft engine for maximum durability and lasting performance. It’s a bit heavier than our other two choices at just over 14 pounds but well-balanced and easy to use thanks to the comfort-grip handle.

The detachable metal shaft is a nice 60 inches in length, perfect for homeowners that are average height or taller. The straight shaft delivers more power and reliability for longer-use jobs. And makes this motor compatible with all Ryobi Expand-It Universal brand fit attachments.

While all these features are great, what sets this trimmer apart is how easy it is to load and start. It takes just minutes to place and set a new string cartridge for this 18-inch wide trimmer. And, thanks to a simple bump feed, you don’t have to stop working to pull out more string. More than any model we looked at, users raved about how easy this trimmer was to start. Just pull and go for quick yard maintenance without the hassle.

This weed wacker is on the higher end of the price spectrum for the models we considered, but not the most expensive by any means. And it is well worth it for the homeowner who has a lot of thick weeds and debris to get through.

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2. Husqvarna 128LD Gas String Trimmer

Husqvarna 128LD Gas String Trimmer

If you’re looking for a trimmer powerful enough to take on tough jobs but still easy to maneuver for more general use, the Husqvarna 128LD Gas String Trimmer is one to consider.

This powerful 28 CC 2-cycle trimmer can take on thick weeds, wet grass, and just about any other task in the average suburban yard. But, at 11 pounds, it’s also super lightweight and perfect for those long jobs.

This straight shaft weed wacker is just 52 inches tall, making it a poor choice for taller users, but perfect for those on the other end of the height spectrum. In fact, this is one of the best options for women, given the shorter, lighter-weight design.

The Husqvarna has a 17-inch wide trimming area that makes quick work for large jobs. The “tap-n-go” bump feed means no interruptions to the task. And the large translucent gas tank means less time filling up and plenty of warning before you run low.

This model is compatible with other Husqvarna attachable yard equipment. Unlike our top pick, though, it does take a little tinkering to get it performing the way it should. Many users report issues with bogging down shortly after starting up. Luckily, fixing this is as easy as adjusting the carburetor screws.

With a little work, this string trimmer provides impressive power in a lightweight, easy-to-maneuver package at a price that’s well matched for what you get.

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3. Coocheer 2-in-1 Gas Powered Weed Eater

Coocheer 2-in-1 Gas Powered Weed Eater

Both our above picks are great choices for hefty yard work, but if you have a huge property or more than the average amount of debris to contend with, you’ll need a weed trimmer that can keep up. The Coocheer 2-in-1 Gas Powered Weed Eater is one clear winner that’s up for the challenge.

This 2-cycle weed wacker has a huge 42.7 CC motor that delivers a ton of horsepower to get through even the thickest stands of weed and brush.

The 62-inch straight shaft provides durability and reliability for lasting performance even with heavy use. The 13-pound frame is easy enough to maneuver, but made far easier thanks to the u-handles and included strap.

With this trimmer kit, you get a bonus 11-inch trimming blade for those seriously thick jobs. When you’re ready to get back to more typical weed whacking, simply trade out the blade for the wide 18-inch string pack.

The best part? This durable, solid trimmer is even less expensive than the other two options on our list. It isn’t quite as easy to start, but beyond that, it performs impressively well and is super simple to maneuver.

Check on Amazon

Buying Guide

Before you choose one of the gas string trimmers above, there are a few things worth considering to assure you get the right tool for your needs.

This handy buyer’s guide will help you narrow down your options, looking at the following buying factors:

  1. Why gas-powered?
  2. Engine
  3. Shaft
  4. Weight

1. Why Gas Powered?

Gas-powered string trimmers used to be the gold standard. But improvements in battery technology have made them less desirable in recent years, in favor of electric trimmers.

Still, there are some benefits to the gas-powered versions.

Pros and Cons

Compared to battery and corded string trimmers, gas-powered models offer longer runtimes, more consistent power through tough jobs, and professional-grade performance at an affordable price.

A quality gas trimmer can get through thicker debris and tall grass faster and easier than even the best electric trimmers.

However, there are also some downsides to gas trimmers. For one, they require fuel to run which not only costs extra but is less earth-friendly.

They also tend to be noisier, stinkier, and heavier than electric options. And they take a lot more maintenance, not just of the motor itself, but to mix the gas and oil at the correct ratios.

Other Options

Corded string trimmers have always been a good alternative to noisy gas-powered models. These can put out quite a bit of power and will run indefinitely without needing to be refueled. But they also have limited use based on the length of the extension cord available.

Battery-powered string trimmers have come a long way in the last decade. Now, many top models rival gas-powered options in how easily they take on tough jobs and thick debris. And battery life is also getting longer, making for fewer interruptions even when taking on large jobs.

My preference? I use a corded electric string trimmer for the quick jobs around the house, and a battery-powered trimmer for the chores further into the backyard and garden. I do not like gas-powered string trimmers but I can see how they are useful in certain scenarios.

2. Engine

Gas-powered string trimmer engines come in various sizes and types.

2-Cycle

2-cycle motors create higher rpm to spin the trimmer wheel faster so you can complete tasks more quickly. These types are also much more affordable. But, on the downside, they are also less fuel-efficient and noisier.

4-Cycle

4-cycle motors spin at lower rpm but create more torque, making them better able to cut through thick debris. They are also more fuel-efficient and create fewer emissions. But they are also very pricey and not usually necessary for the average homeowner.

CC

Trimmer engines are also rated in “CCs”. The term CC stands for Cubic Centimeters which measures the Engine Capacity. This measurement gives you an idea of how powerful the motor is, with larger cc motors tending to be more powerful than smaller ones.

However, other factors also influence the overall horsepower of a trimmer motor. This means that higher quality, lower-cc motors can often outperform lower quality, higher-cc motors. In other words, don’t just look at the advertised CC number.

3. Shaft

When looking at the shaft of a gas string trimmer, there are generally three things to consider:

  • Length
  • Adjustability
  • Shape

Longer trimmers are easier for taller users to operate without having to hunch down. Shorter trimmers, likewise, are easier for shorter users to use. Most commercial trimmers range between about 50 inches and 64 inches.

Some models feature adjustable shafts that can be lengthened or shortened to fit the user and the job. These can be very convenient but are also more prone to durability issues, especially under heavy use.

Gas string trimmer with straight shaft
Gas string trimmer with straight shaft

Gas trimmers are available in straight shaft or curved shaft builds. Curved shaft trimmers tend to be easier to maneuver, especially in tight spots. But these kinds rely on plastic cable drive mechanisms that are much less durable and offer less power.

Straight shafts aren’t quite as easy to use, but they are much more durable, especially when paired with a metal driveshaft. These types are powerful enough to be used with trimmer blades and are the only type used by professionals.

4. Weight

The last thing you’ll want to consider is the weight of the gas string trimmer.

Of the three trimmer types, gas-powered models tend to weigh the most. In fact, the dry weight of most gas-powered trimmers is generally more than the functional weight of even the heaviest corded trimmers.

It is worth keeping in mind that the “dry weight” given in most advertising material doesn’t account for the weight of gasoline. With a full tank, most trimmers will weigh one to two pounds more than advertised.

Heavy trimmers are often fitted with u-handles or shoulder straps to make them easier to manage. If you’re worried about the strain from using a heavy trimmer, it’s worth considering getting a corded or battery trimmer instead.

Final Thoughts

Gas string trimmers are a necessary tool when taking on large, tough jobs around the yard. By investing in a quality trimmer you can help turn that tough job into a quick, easy project.

By far, the most user-friendly trimmer we found was the Ryobi RY253SS 2-Cycle Gas Trimmer. This powerful weed whacker makes quick work of thick debris while easing the burden of the user thanks to a reliable starter and easy-load string cartridge.

For a lightweight alternative, we recommend the Husqvarna 128LD Gas String Trimmer. This 11-pound trimmer is also shorter than most, making it a good choice for those in search of a more compact tool.

Or, for a seriously powerful tool to take on the toughest jobs, the Coocheer 2-in-1 Gas Powered Weed Eater is the way to go. The oversized motor and durable shaft are as reliable as they are functional. Plus, this model is ridiculously well priced.

 

Gas string trimmer buying guide

 
Thomas Dunnett

The backyard is the perfect place to bond with family and friends, to have a good time, or to simply relax with some fresh air and a bit of sunshine. With this website I am hoping to share my passion for the backyard with you.

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