Garden Tiller Buying Guide

Why Do You Need a Garden Tiller?

Gardeners love tillers because they help to start new beds, cultivate weeds, and work-in compost. If you own property that requires that you “plow” in order to plant gardens, lawns, or other landscaping on a regular basis, you will want a gas-powered garden tiller. Using gas-powered tillers makes preparing a garden much easier, faster, and less back-breaking than using a shovel or a hoe. Tillers are useful in gardens over 100 square feet, and can be used to keep the rows in your garden clear of weeds.

There are also electric-powered tillers and mini-tiller/cultivators that are easy-to-use options for personal gardening in small spaces. Some larger, gas-powered tillers also come with special attachments for edging, dethatching, snow removal, and trimming. Choosing the tiller that’s right for you is really a matter of how it will be used. Ask yourself the following before going any further:

  • Is the tiller for home or commercial use?
  • Will you be tilling, turning up soil, and cultivating existing flower beds or virgin soil?
  • Will you be working with hard pack soil or clay?

How to Select the Right Tiller for the Job

Tillers are powerful earth-churning machines. They break up, mulch, and aerate soil with deep-cutting blades that extend deep into the ground. A typical tiller is somewhat larger than a gas-powered lawn mover and requires a larger, more powerful engine.Tillers come with blades (or tines) either in the front or the back. Front-tined tillers generally have an electric motor on top of the blades and are lightweight, while rear-tined tillers have a gas-powered motor located above the front wheels which propel the tiller through the soil.Rear-tined tillers cultivate soil that front-tined machines can only bounce across. Large, rear-tined tillers are much easier to control, which translates into less sore muscles for you!Tillers come with three basic kinds of blades:

  1. Bolo: basic design for deep tilling
  2. Slasher: for thicker vegetation and roots in soft ground
  3. Pick and chisel: for use on hard, rocky ground

Features that Make a Difference

Briggs & Stratton gas-powered garden tillers produce the driving force necessary for any tilling job. Real power that’s easy to control… get a grip on the features that make a real difference:

  • Reliable Motor: Dual ball bearings extend engine life; cast iron sleeves withstand wear and abuse, and provide improved oil control; and an OHV design runs cooler and cleaner—delivering more power, longer engine life, and improved fuel economy.
  • Easy Starting: easy, electric-start engines.
  • Forward-rotating tines: for self-cleaning.
  • Conveniently-located Controls: for comfort, ease of use, and safety.
  • Adjustable Operator Handle: up, down, and side-to-side to avoid waling in tilled soil.
  • Adjustable Tilling Depth: lets you choose to prep soil (deep) or weed (shallow).

Visit Your Local Tiller Dealer

A great resource for finding the right unit is your local outdoor power equipment dealer who handles tillers.

See how much noise and vibration the engine makes.See how easy the machine is to turn. Be sure to start the unit and try the controls. Don’t hesitate to ask the dealer if he or she has a model that can be “test driven” onsite or at home before making a final buying decision.

Locate a dealer near you.


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