You may be wondering what the purpose of a leaf mulcher is and how it is different from a lawnmower. The answer is simple. Lawnmowers cut up grass, push it down into the ground and leave it there. Leaf mulchers can cut up grass and hardy leaves too, but it sucks the chewed up bits up and puts them in a different location of your choice.
Today we are going over our top 5 leaf mulcher picks of 2020. We will share the good, the bad, and the ugly with you. We want to make sure you know what you’re getting before you purchase one. We are also including a buyer’s guide so you will know what to look for during your search.
|Sun Joe SDJ616||13 lbs||4.5/5|
|BLACK+DECKER BV6000 Blower/Vac/Mulcher|
|Worx WG509 TRIVAC 12 Amp 3-In-1||11 lbs||4.1/5|
|Flowtron LE-900||17 lbs||3.9/5|
The WG430 has a unique design that will allow you to use paper and plastic bags to gather your mulch. The downside is that the back doesn’t come with it. You have to purchase those separately.
There are a lot of pluses to this machine. Besides being easy to use, the Worx WG430 breaks down very quickly to fold up; not taking up as much space in your storage shed. There is one thing that did disappoint us about this mulcher, though. It only has two prongs; it isn’t grounded.
The Sun Joe SD616 is a strong runner up behind the Marx WG430. It’s also a stand-alone electric mulcher. It can mulch up to 55 gallons of mulch per minute with its thick trimming string.
The powerful motor has multiple settings that allow you to make the needed adjustment for dry or wet leaves.
Since mulching up leaves is a filthy job, this tool also comes equipped with a dust protector to keep the dust out of the motor. This will help keep the engine healthy so that it will have a longer lifespan.
The SD616 is capable also of holding plastic lawn bags that you, unfortunately, have to purchase separately.
However, if you want a little more stability to the sides of the bag, its unique design also allows it to sit on top of your standard size trash can. That can be a good idea because the legs on this unit aren’t very stable. The locks that hold them in place are cheap and don’t stick very well.
Though Sun Joe tells us that this mulcher can handle anything you throw into it, it really doesn’t work on much besides leaves. If you were to pick up a small stick accidentally, it would chop it up, but not nearly as fine, and the larger objects wear the trimming string out pretty fast.
The Black and Decker BV6000 is a portable three-in-one unit. It’s also simple to use, and the cross body strap makes it easy to carry around with you. That said, portability is limited by the length of the cord.
Black and Decker claim that this mulcher can mulch both wet and dry leaves. It even has variable speeds to give the motor a little more oomph when the leaves are wet. In our experience, though, we found that the mulched wet leaves basically just turned into mud. This causes the blower to clog quickly and requires the vacuum tube to be removed quite frequently to clean the assembly out.
All in all, the Black and Decker BV6000 is a good buy for your money. The blower and the mulcher both work pretty well, but we did find that the vacuum is very weak and doesn’t suck much up. It does do a satisfactory job, although it is a little slower than the more powerful gas mulchers.
The Worx WG509 Trivac is another portable three-in-one electric mulcher. There are no parts to swap out to change the function of this unit. All it takes is a flip of a switch to change from the blower to the mulcher or vacuum, and vice versa.
The motor has variable speeds to provide you with more power. The WG506 Trivac is also very lightweight so that it’s easy for you to tote around.
Its ergonomic handle makes it easy to carry around and operate with one hand. That is a good thing because this mulcher doesn’t have any kind of carrying strap.
Another inconvenience is the power switch, which can be difficult to operate with gloved hands. You will also want to keep in mind that, though the unit has variable speeds, it’s not as versatile as other options. This mulcher will only chew up dry leaves, and even then it gets clogged easy. It really doesn’t have a whole lot of power to do much of anything except for your lightest jobs.
The Flowtron LE-900 is a decent stand-alone electric mulcher. It uses a metal blade to mulch your leaves up, and you can adjust how coarse you want the mulch to be.
Like the Sun Joe SD616, the Flowtron LE-900 can hold lawn bags that are purchased separately. It uses a bungee cord to keep it into place and can fit on your standard garbage can. This mulcher has a cord and requires an electrical outlet to run.
The Flowtron will work if you are on a tight budget. Just remember that you get what you pay for. It was made out of cheap plastic, is very flimsy, and just isn’t designed well overall.
Why do so many people want to mulch their leaves? That’s easy. If you have to bag them for the city to haul away, your bags will handle a lot more volume than if the leaves were whole.
The biggest reason, though, is that mulching is easier than raking and it’s good for the environment.
If you live in an area where you can store your mulched-up leaves, they will eventually turn into fertile soil. That allows you to repurpose those leaves for planting things like your beautiful flowers.
If you don’t want to wait until the fertile soil has formed, you can just use your clippings as a sort of fertilizer around your plants, as long as you don’t put them on too heavy. If the layer of clippings that you put on is too thick, they will hold moisture causing mold and mildew.
Leaf mulchers come in a variety of styles. Different features can help you decide which model will work best for you.
What should you look for in a Leaf Mulcher?
Some mulchers come with their own collection bag, while others can accommodate a bag, but you need to purchase them separately.
Leaf mulchers have three different types of systems to cut the leaves:
Make sure that the chopping mechanism is strong enough to cut through the number of leaves that you have.
If you only have a few trees, then the string may be sufficient for you, but if you have a large yard and get a massive amount of leaves every fall, you will want to get the metal blades so that they will last longer. Of course, the plastic blades fall somewhere in the middle.
Leaf mulchers can also have three different types of power to supply its motor:
Look for a mulcher that has a switch-off function whenever the unit gets blocked. Blockages can cause problems if there is not a safety feature to shut it off.
Gas mulchers have high emission gases that are left in the air. Using electric mulchers whenever possible is much safer for the environment. Also, look for units that have reusable collection bags instead of disposable ones.
Think about where you want to store your leaf mulcher. Do you have enough room to store it one piece, or do you need one that breaks down to take up less space?
So now that you know what to look for in leaf mulchers let’s quickly review our top five picks for you.
Hopefully, you have gained some useful information here to give you a little bit more knowledge about leaf mulchers so you can feel comfortable with whatever decision that you make.
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Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!