Wood chippers break down larger pieces from trees into smaller and valuable materials that can be used for other functions. The tree-waste could be trees felled by storms or branches and twigs that have just fallen. The waste from trees can be converted to mulch, compost, and pressed wood with the right garden shredder, or sometimes referred to as a compost shredder.
They have made the work of clearing farms more economical. You can clear your farm on your own using these machines now. They will significantly reduce the cost of tree trunk clearance from your farm through the use of these machines.
You can use them to avoid burning refuse from farms and gardens. It leads to a reduction in pollution to the environment. With most countries banning the practice of burning farm waste, you need these machines to help keep your farm neat.
There are different types as well. Depending on the intended use, you can choose commercial shredders or small ones. They are also powered using various sources of energy. Larger ones are gasoline-powered, but most of the smaller shredders use electricity.
Here’s a list of the best wood chippers and shredders, including electric ones, your best PTO, industrial or gas-powered options, as well as what to look for.
Buy or Rent
Are you undecided on whether to buy or rent a tree shredder? You might feel like purchasing one costs a lot of money. However, it all depends on the number of times you need it. If you use it often, then renting will be more expensive in the long run. They’re some of the same considerations you would be having if you were buying a metal lathe or a wood lathe.
You could also use the device as a money generation platform by selling the products produced. Some produced furniture products can only be made through these high-quality machines. These methods have proven to help in getting a return on investment faster.
You can also lend it to neighbors that need to use it.
They come in three major categories. They are;
- Power take-off (PTO)
The electric models are smaller in size compared to the other types. They are used on wood pieces that are less than 4 inches wide. They operate without making much noise. They are thus preferred because they don’t disturb the neighbors with noise. They are used for small twigs and branches from gardens. They are primarily for domestic purposes only.
These machines, as the name suggests, run on electric power. They get their power through electric cords connected from the house to the device. You need to get the correct type of wire attached to avoid burning down your home or damaging the machine. You can gain knowledge on how to choose the proper wire size here and here.
They run on gasoline. Gas models are used on twigs slightly more prominent than those which electric models can shred. It shreds branches that are more than four inches wide. This type is mainly used by people who need relatively small wood slices but are located far from electricity. This machine is highly mobile since its movement isn’t dependent on an electric power supply.
The machine, however, makes some noise while running. You will also notice a production of smoke while dealing with the device. The smoke and the machine’s noise are produced by the engine while burning the fuel.
Power Take-off (PTO)
These are heavy-duty machines used in vast land pieces with massive trunks of trees. If you need to clear your property or are in the process of landscaping, this is the right type. You can use these to produce some of the items you need if you are landscaping. They are also used in areas where burning vegetation is prohibited, and you need to clear a large area of woody vegetation.
Engines of motor trucks or tractors drive PTO machines by connecting them to the spline. They are more potent than both gas and electric ones. Power take-off chippers also cost more than either electric or gas ones. The most common option for this type is the 3-point model.
These are machines designed for large-scale industrial use. They are used in chipping and shredding materials for furniture use. The products can also make mulch, animal bedding and boiler fuel. Unlike other heavy-duty shredders, industrial ones run on electricity.
Factors to Consider
It is advisable to know what to look at before buying. We will take you through some factors to look at before you determine the ideal machine to go with.
|Bin capacity||Type of work|
|Engine horsepower||Reduction ratio|
Some machines come laden with a bin where the shredded waste is collected. The containers are primarily found in smaller sizes, electric and gas models. While choosing the bag capacity, choose one that is of modest size. Your choice of the collection bag should be guided by the load you can comfortably carry. By doing this, you will avoid injuries by carrying backpacks that are too heavy to bear. You can even specifically get an MTD chipper shredder which is great for your yard!
Type of work to be done
There are different machines for various scales of job to be done. If you are bush clearing a large piece of land, you need a P.T.O. model. The size of logs, branches, and twigs that need to be removed contributes to the type you choose. For smaller twigs, you generally need a gas or electric one.
The reduction ratio
The reduction ratio determines the output of the products you will get. The higher the reduction ratio, the finer the materials you get. Carpenters can use the highly reduced wooden waste for a wide range of purposes. You get better mulch from such materials. The more refined materials also make better products for furniture and beautification.
Ones with a higher reduction ratio are more expensive. If you don’t need a very high reduction ratio, you could choose another to save on the amount of money you spend. A reduction ratio of 15:1 means it reduces 15 sacks of material to one bag.
A shredding chute is used for more delicate material that a traditional unit cannot. They are items such as leaves and smaller twigs. The line comes as an addition to the main unit. You can buy a shredder separately, but it comes at a higher price. By purchasing one that already has an inbuilt shredder saves you money.
The amount of horsepower determines its capacity to handle tasks. A higher horsepower translates to a more powerful machine. Depending on the functions you intend to carry out, you can choose the appropriate amount of horsepower. Domestic machines will need to be lower horsepower devices. Commercial shredders also require a higher amount of horsepower of 10hp and above. Some of the common options include 3, 5, 5.5, 7.5, 8, 10 hp wood chippers.
Predator 6.5 HP (212 cc) Chipper Shredder
This high-speed model comes with a waste collection bag. It is gas-powered with a high reduction ratio of 20:1. It takes up branches with a maximum of 3″ diameter. It operates with four chipper hammers and a shredding plate to slice the wood to the required size.
The main advantages include;
- Pneumatic wheels that can withstand different terrain and surfaces.
- Reduced blockage due to large discharge ports.
- Dual-action slicer for breaking stiff branches.
- Wheel brakes for better control.
- Low oil shutdown.
- Can operate on large branches.
- Large discharge port that prevents blockage when in operation.
- Comes with a collection bag for the products produced.
- Automatic shutdown in case of low oil levels.
- Easy to move around due to its large wheels.
- It has large handles that make controlling easier.
- It has a heavy engine that requires a lot of effort to turn over.
- Feeding chute as large as indicated. Not all 3-inch-wide branches fit.
Yardmax yw7565 – Best Design
You will find this to be relatively easy to operate. The Yardmax chipper has a self-feeding mechanism which means you just put the debris to the chute, and it will pull. It is also easy to move around. If assembling the device on your own, the manual is straightforward and easy to understand. You can feed the branches without clearing to the machine, and it chips the material altogether. It takes in twigs of up to 3″ diameter.
- Highly mobile machine saving time while in use.
- Pneumatic wheels that can withstand any surfaces.
- Easy to maintain with its easy-to-access blades.
- They are designed to handle long branches.
- High reduction ratio of 10:1.
- It comes with a two-year warranty.
- Easy to handle.
- Low maintenance cost
- It has a powerful engine of 6.5 horsepower.
- Easy to move around
- Hard to work on fresh wood.
- It easily clogs.
Portland chipper is a relatively small model ideal for domestic use. It is an electric device that is relatively quiet compared to others. Your fingers are safer while operating this device. It comes with a guard that prevents your fingers from sticking in. It has a push stick for the delivery of the twigs safely. It is ideal for converting twigs, leaves and branches into mulch.
- Easy to move with its 6″ wheels
- safe to operate with its circuit breaker protection
- highly durable made of hard material that rarely dents
- has a polypropylene hopper that prevents rust.
- Zero carbon emissions
- Highly portable
- Enhanced safety while operating due to its circuit breaker.
Eco ES 1600
The Es 1600 is a light-duty electric 2.5 hp motor shredder with 2800 rpm designed for domestic use. It has a reduction ratio of 10:1, which you will find ideal for the machine.
It has a 3-way feeding system designed for different material sizes. The top hopper takes in larger twigs and stems. The side feeders can be used for smaller materials. In case of blade breakage, you also repair it using one of these M.I.G. welders.
The features of this shredder include:
- Safety design such as overload system for switching off the machine in case it malfunctions
- Rarely clogs due to its discharge chute designed to emit maximum waste.
- It has seven-inch wheels, which makes it easy to push around.
- Produce high-quality garden mulch.
- It perfectly works with small sticks that need to be shredded.
- Easy to store.
- Rounded discharge compartment for ease of removal of products
- Quickly jams while in operation.
- It takes a long time to shred large amounts of leaves.
Patriot products CSV-2515
Like Craftsman, Troy Bilt, Vermeer & Dr Power, patriot also makes a wonderful machine for you to consider. If your garden or yard has wide branches or twigs falling, then this is your solution. The CSV- 2515 is an electric model with 1.5 horsepower. You can chip wooden material of about 2.5″ in diameter shred leaves too! Its design is suited for standard domestic voltage of 110 or 120 volts. The mulch you get from this machine is perfect for gardens.
- Compact hence easily stored in a garage
- Chips relatively large materials (2.5″) compared to units its size.
- Packaged with safety goggles and collection bag
- High mobility due to its large wheel design
- Easy to maintain
- Easy to operate
- It has a two-year warranty
- High capacity 14 amperes motor
- Handles branches as wide as 2.5 inches wide
- Award-winning model trusted by many
- Expensive to buy.
- Stalls occasionally while in use.
Ways to take care of your machine
Like most machines, their durability is determined by handling it appropriately. If operated as recommended, it serves you for a longer time. However, most people rarely manage their appliances as advised leading to frequent breakdowns. You will find proper maintenance makes machines exceed their expected operational time.
Ways of proper maintenance include:
- Frequent oil change as recommended by the manufacturer.
- Constant greasing of moving parts
- Cleaning blades after using the machine
- Regular cleaning and replacement of the air filter whenever necessary.
- Storage of the unit needs to be in enclosed spaces to avoid rust of internal components.
Safety precautions to take
It is best to handle the machine with care to avoid injuries while operating it. Manufacturers have a set of recommendations you need to follow to keep safe while using it. You will find that some machines come with personal protective equipment that the manufacturer recommends to be worn while working.
Ways of keeping safe while using them include:
- Read and understand the guide before starting
- Always wear safety goggles to avoid the waste being ejected from entering your eyes.
- Use of earmuffs for noise cancellation while operating the machine
- Never insert your fingers in the device while using it because the rotating parts could chop them or the machine electrocutes you.
- Completely switch off the machine while maintaining it. If it is an electric disconnect from the power source, remove the plugs to ensure it doesn’t accidentally switch for gas-powered.
- Don’t force branches into the machine. It prevents you from damaging the device and reduces the machine’s danger of harming you.
- Step aside once a self-feeding machine has grabbed a piece of wood.
- Keep the tool away from children and animals.
- Always engage the brake while using the machine.
- Avoid loosely fitting clothes while operating it.
These are some of the most asked questions about the topic.
Do I need hearing protection while using one?
Yes. It is advisable to wear hearing muffs while operating a wood chipper. The machine produces noise of about 85 to 110 decibels which require protection.
How do you operate it?
Before using one, first look for level ground to operate it on. Engage its breaks which will stop the machine from moving while in operation. Check whether it has enough fuel and oil if gas-powered or the chord’s connectivity to a power socket for an electric appliance. Start the machine and feed it the fallen wood.
When should you clean it?
It is recommended that a wood chipper should be cleaned after each use. It helps with maintenance and prevents rusting of the cutting blades. Cleaning after service saves time when you next use it since you won’t need to clean.
We hope that this guide may have helped you! The same way that you wouldn’t just go out and buy a gasless MIG welder or random welding glasses, we feel you should always be making the best choice when it comes to the equipment you buy! Check out our resource on shower vs bathtub resale values as well, now that you’re here!