How to Edge Your Lawn With a String Trimmer

If you’re like most homeowners, you take pride in maintaining a well-manicured lawn. One key element of a well-groomed lawn is edging; doing so define the edges of your grass and lend a finished look to your landscaping. Edging can be done with many tools, but one of the easiest – and least expensive – methods is to use a string trimmer.

Edging your lawn with a string trimmer is an easy way to give it a clean, professional look. It’s also a great way to keep grass and weeds from growing into the cracks between your sidewalk and driveway. In this article, we’ll show you how to edge your lawn using a string trimmer. We’ll also provide some tips on how to make the process easier and more efficient. So, if you’re looking for a simple way to improve the appearance of your yard, read on!

Trimmers Vs. Edgers

Edging is the process of trimming the grass along the edge of your yard, and it’s a great way to make your yard look neater. For example, if you have a walkway or stone path through your back yard, or your grass lines up exactly next to your driveway or a flower bed, these areas are perfect for edging, and it will give your yard that professional look many homeowners want.

An edger is a specialized piece of equipment that can do this process. It can be designed to cut different types of grass, including tall grass, and it can also be used on different surfaces. These can be motorized or powered by hand. A hand edger usually either looks like a long pair of hedge clippers or a long shovel with a sharp spade at the end of it, for you to use to cut the grass off along the edge of your property or along a walkway.

However, you don’t need an edger to perform this task – a string trimmer will do just as good a job.

A string trimmer, known as a line trimmer or weed cutter, is essentially a motorized weed eater. It has a long, rotating shaft that holds a circular line of string, and it’s used for cutting grass and light brush in areas that a lawn mower can’t reach.

This string is typically made of nylon or some other monofilament plastic, and when it spins very quickly powered by the motor the centrifugal force straightens it out and makes it able to cut through grass, small twigs, and other plants.

Types of String Trimmers

There are two different types of string trimmers that you can buy, ones that have a motor and run on gas, and those that are electric and either operate via a battery or a power cord.

Gas-Powered String Trimmers

String trimmers that are powered by gasoline engine are powerful and heavy duty options. These are more ideal for larger areas or harder, thicker grass, because they can spin faster and power through tougher jobs, like dense roadside foliage or large and stubborn weeds.

Internal combustion engine-powered trimmers have the engine on the other side of the shaft from the cutting head. The advantages of a conventional gas powered trimmer include full mobility and greater maximum power. However, there are also a few disadvantages, the most significant of which is its greater weight, as well as the fact that it must be refueled and generates a lot of vibration throughout the device, both of which restrict its mobility and cause muscular fatigue.

Electric String Trimmers

The pros of using an electric string trimmer are that they are quite light, simple to handle, and simple to operate. Both the length and power cable impose restrictions, however. These machines have a lot of power, even though they are not as powerful or resilient as gasoline-driven trimmers. Because of their lower power output (400 to 1200 watts), they are usually limited to 2.5 mm (0.098 in) maximum diameter nylon.

Recharging a battery model with small or big sealed lead acid, nickel metal hydride, or lithium ion batteries takes several hours; some models have fast charging of as little as half an hour, or a detachable battery pack.

Most electric string trimmers have an electric motor in the cutting head, although there are some exceptions.

Should You Use A String Trimmer Or Just Buy An Edger?

Edging your lawn is a vital part of making your lawn appear the fullest and healthiest it can. The average homeowner and amateur gardener might not be able to afford or have space for an entire new instrument just to do this one task, however. For this reason, using a string trimmer for multiple jobs will save both money, time, maintenance costs, and storage space.

While any string trimmer may be used to trim your grass with excellent results, the use of one with an edging attachment or a flip-down edging guide makes it considerably simpler. As homeowners seek for more of an “all-in-one” solution for their lawn, the edging attachments and guides are becoming increasingly popular. So, if you want to use a string trimmer to edge your lawn, consider buying an extra attachment for it.

However, there are some advantages to buying an edger if you can afford it and have the space to store it. Edge lines made by an edger are more accurate than those made by a string trimmer. Additionally, motorized edgers in particular are less intense and stressful on your back and arms, because you have to use a string trimmer at a different height and angle than they are made to be used, creating strain and an awkward operation position.

Click here if you would like to read up on our picks for the best edgers currently available.

Best Practices When Edging Using A String Trimmer

Follow these steps to get the most out of your string trimmer when using it to edge your lawn.

Mow your lawn

Before edging your grass or just trimming it, you should mow your lawn to as short as you are comfortable with it being. This will give your lawn its correct, uniform shape, and you will be able to see how and where to use your string trimmer.

Position The String Trimmer Correctly

A string trimmer is manufactured to be used horizontal to the ground, whereas an edger is used vertically along the very edge of a lawn or plot of grass. So, in order to best use a string trimmer as an edger, you have to turn it so that it cuts vertically.

To begin, figure out which way the string trimmer rotates so that any debris is flung away from you. Then, while the trimmer is facing away from you, rotate the handle clockwise to lift the weed guard. The rear end of the trimmer can be held up near to your shoulder. The trimmer will appear to be resting on your shoulder while you hold it with both hands, even though you should still grab it. Aim the head of the trimmer at the edge of the grass and start to edge.

Use The String Trimmer To Edge

To get started, position your string trimmer so that the blade is touching the ground on one side of the desired edge. Gently pull the trimmer towards you, guiding it along the desired edge; make sure to keep the blade in contact with the ground at all times. When you reach the end of the surface, turn the trimmer around and use your other hand to guide it back to your starting point.

When you have finished edging with a string trimmer, simply advance the line at both ends. You can either tap it lightly on the ground or run over it with the machine itself. Remember that an electric cord will break if you pull it towards you with too much force, so be careful.

Common Mistakes While Edging with a String Trimmer

Here are some of the most commonly made mistakes along with how to avoid them.

String Is Too Short

It might be difficult to cut a clean edge around your yard when the string on your trimmer shrinks below four inches. This could mean you chop too deeply into the edge, and you may end up with an uneven line. Also, a short piece of string might get trapped inside your trimmer head and need to be removed.

Incorrect Positioning

You should ensure that you keep a perfect 90 degree angle as you use your string trimmer. You may trim the grass so that it leans too far away from the driveway, path, or sidewalk if you reduce your angle relative to the grass side of the edge. If you angle your yard to the path or driveway side, the grass may still hang over the margin.

Ignoring the direction of rotation

If the string trimmer rotates toward you instead of away from you when edging your lawn, it might fling debris or small, dangerous objects at you at a high velocity, which can result in injury or broken possessions.

Moving too quickly

Take your time when edging your lawn with a string trimmer. It is not a very natural position and can take a bit of getting used to, so it is important that you take your time and don’t rush. This can only lead to a sloppy and uneven edge, or in someone potentially getting hurt.

Safety Precautions

Before we get into edging, there are a few safety issues and precautions to consider. The use of string trimmers around any home can be extremely dangerous. They may cause serious injury to people and in extreme cases, damage automobiles or other nearby property. 

A string trimmer works on the theory that increased centripetal force in the center causes highly spun wires to stretch out and become taut. The wires’ kinetic energy is used to cut, but this energy can also be utilized to launch objects such as stones, twigs, and small toys at high speeds.

Remove any debris, toys, obstructions, or hoses from the garden or lawn before you begin. Make sure you are wearing both ear and eye protection, gloves, long pants that you don’t mind getting dirty, and hard-toed shoes.


When it comes to lawn care, one of the main tasks people face is edging. This may seem like a superfluous task, but it is one of the final small steps you can take to make your lawn look completed and of a professional quality. Edging can be done with a number of different tools, including a string trimmer. Edging your lawn with a string trimmer can be a quick and easy way to give it a clean edge, but there are some things you need to know in order to do it correctly.

In this post, we’ve discussed the different types of string trimmers, how to use them effectively for edging, and the best practices for getting the job done right. We also covered some of the common mistakes people make when edging their lawns with a string trimmer, and offered tips for avoiding these mistakes.

So, whether you’re new to using a string trimmer or just want to make sure you’re doing it right, we hope that you were able to take some helpful information from this article. We hope that after reading this post, you now feel confident enough to try edging your lawn with a string trimmer on your own! Good luck with all of your lawn care work!

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Written by Linda Chan
Linda Chan is a passionate gardener and writer with a background in horticulture and landscape design. She has over 10 years of experience working in the lawn care industry and has a deep understanding of the science and art of keeping a lawn healthy and beautiful.