Rolling green lawns set off any garden perfectly.
Keeping up with the maintenance can seem like hard work, though.
How about mowing? Does it have to be such hard work?
Today, we’ll look at some self-propelled lawn mower reviews.
These nifty appliances don’t cost as much as a full-blooded riding mower but they will save you a huge amount of effort.
Before we walk you through 5 of the best self-propelled lawn mowers, we’ll take a look at what they are and what to look out for when buying one…
A regular gas mower simply generates the power to cut your grass. It does one job and it does it well.
With self-propelled mowers, as the name suggests, the mower will also power itself around your yard. Where a standard mower only powers the blades, these models divide the power between the blades and the wheels.
Rather than a vertical shaft over the blades, with self-propelled mowers there is a drive train and gearbox so each wheel is powered while the remainder affects the blades.
If you struggle with mobility or lifting heavy weights, this is a superb way to take the sting out of garden maintenance. Self-propelled mowers also work well on any uneven lawns or in gardens set on a slope.
These mowers are not for everyone.
It pays to take a look at the good and bad points before launching in. You can then decide whether or not you would benefit from one of these nifty labor-saving appliances or if an alternative would better suit you.
You should now have a decent idea whether or not this type of mower would make a good fit for your needs.
What about the different types of self-propelled mower?
While self-propelled mowers differ in many ways, there are 2 main choices:
Gas-powered self-propelled mowers are heavy and feature-rich.
Most of these mowers come with 4-stroke engines. These deliver enough power for both the blades and wheels. You do come across some 2-cycle engines. These are noisier and less efficient. You will also need to add oil to the fuel.
All gas models come with a clutch and brake.
On the plus side, you’ll get ample power, a mower that’s built to last and with the ability to cut large gardens fuss-free. They also maintain a consistent blade speed.
The principal drawback of gas-powered mowers is the noise coupled with the fumes it gives off. You also be limited by the amount of gasoline you have to hand. You’ll also need much more maintenance. Winterizing it for the first year is sufficient. From that point on, service the drivetrain, gearbox and blades regularly to avoid problems.
The benefits outweigh the disadvantages with gas self-propelled mowers. For this reason, our self-propelled mower reviews focus entirely on this type.
Electric self-propelled mowers are powered either through a cord or by battery. They are quiet and come with either single-speed or variable-speed transmission.
Operating in silence and requiring no fuel, you can cut your grass without disturbing the neighbors. There is almost no upkeep required. You can stash your mower away in a limited space with ease.
Whether it’s the length of the power cord or the run-time of the battery, you will be rather restricted with an electric mower. They are also more expensive than gas alternatives.
Now you have a good overview of these awesome assisted machines, it’s time for our self-propelled mower reviews so you can choose the best mower for your circumstances…
Deck Size (inches)
First up in our look at the best self-propelled mowers is a rugged and affordable 4-stroke from the industry titan Husqvarna.
The 22-inch steel deck boasts 3-in-1 functionality. You can choose to mulch or bag your grass clippings. You can also opt for side discharge. For most reasonable cutting, a single pass is all that’s required.
The capable 4-cycle motor displaces 160cc. There’s no messing around with oil and it fires up immediately thanks to the automatic choke.
Although it’s a hulking beast at 100 pounds, the self-propelled system means you can work for hours without straining yourself. Since it’s rear-wheel drive, it works brilliantly on slopes and inclines. The large wheels cope with uneven terrain admirably.
You can flick the handle through 3 different positions to find one that works best for you.
Height adjustment is where the Husqvarna really scores. There is a single lever rather than the pair featured on many models. This makes life easier. With 9 cutting heights varying from 1 to 4 inches, you’re spoiled for choice.
If you want a durable and affordable self-propelled mower that offers outstanding cutting power with minimum effort, the Husqvarna 961450023 is a smart choice.
Next up in our look at the best self-propelled mowers is a consistent best-seller from Lawn Boy, the 17732.
Although the 144cc engine is not the most powerful on the market, it copes well with most normal gardening duties. Since it’s rear-wheel drive, you’ll have no snags working on a slope or even a steep hill.
You won’t get the same degree of height adjustment as you find on the Husqvarna. Nevertheless, you can tweak the cutting height from 3 ¾ inches right down to a close 1 ¼ inches depending on your needs.
A superb touch with the Lawn Boy is the innovative Tru-Start guarantee. If you can’t get your mower fired up first or second time, you can get it fixed courtesy of the manufacturer without spending a dime.
Whether you roll with side discharge, bagging or mulching, you’ll enjoy a commendable cut quality even if the grass is wet.
For a cost-effective and environmentally sound cutting solution, think long and hard about the Lawn Boy. It’s a rising start in the world of self-propelled mowers. Snap one up before the prices increase!
Honda has a reputation for first-class products in many different industries. From cars to motorbikes and through to lawn mowers, this Japanese multinational rarely disappoints.
While this mower is not cheap, you get a winning combination of performance, longevity and ease of use from a brand you can rely on.
With a solid 22-inch cutting deck, you can mulch, bag or discharge as with most self-propelled mowers. You’ll be able to work on larger areas of grass without needing to make constant return passes. The dual blades deliver an incredibly close cut. Choose from 6 cutting heights to get the job done right every time.
With a patented Start Safety System, you can lessen the chance of any accidental fire-up.
Although gas-powered mowers have a heavier environmental footprint than electric models, the Honda complies with both CARB and EPA so it’s a notch above most of its competitors.
At 84 pounds, this is not the lightest mower on the market but the self-propulsion makes it seem light as a feather.
For a dependable and precise self-propelled lawn mower that punches above its weight, pop the Honda on your shortlist. It might not be cheap but the best things in life seldom are.
As we near the end of our look at the best self-propelled lawn mowers, up steps a superb 21-incher from the highly reputable Snapper.
Powered by a potent 163cc engine, you can work quickly without any drop in cutting quality. You can choose between 6 different heights so you can get precisely the finish you want.
With 8-inch wheels out front and 11-inch wheels behind, you can maneuver over even rough and hilly terrain in complete comfort and safety. At just over 85 pounds, it’s reasonably lightweight for a self-propelled model.
When it comes to washing the deck, a port is included to make this super-simple.
The superb 3-year limited warranty means you can buy without the headache of wondering what happens if things go wrong.
For a powerful and reliable mower that will keep your lawn looking immaculate, test-drive the Snapper today. It might be just what you were hunting for!
Finishing up our self-propelled lawn mower reviews is the TB330 from the heavyweight Troy-Bilt.
Powered by an outstanding 163cc Briggs and Stratton engine, you can take advantage of the single lever to mix up the speed. Some users have reported build quality issues with the plastic lever so use a light touch.
As with almost all self-propelled mowers, you have a 3-way choice… You can discharge the clippings out the side, mulch or bag them instead.
Comfort is uppermost with the Troy-Bilt. The wheels are designed to handle questionable terrain. The handle is exceptionally comfortable. Troy-Bilt even has you covered when it comes to washing your deck. There’s an integrated cleaning system so you can keep things looking tip-top.
Weighing in at 80 pounds, although the Troy-Bilt is reasonably lightweight for a self-propelled mower. Guiding the mower around on its high-performance wheels is a breeze.
For a solid and efficient self-propelled mower that’s built to stand the test of time, you could do far worse than the Troy-Bilt TB330. The 2-year limited warranty is the finishing touch.
We trust you found some useful snippets in these self-propelled mower reviews.
Rather than looking at garden maintenance as a chore, try to focus on the relaxing benefits instead. If you invest in the best self-propelled mower, you can take the strain out of cutting the grass without necessarily spending a fortune.
Feel free to share any of our articles on your social media.
Contact us any time with any queries or feedback. We are always delighted to hear from our readers.
It’s here at last…
Just as you might seek shade under your patio umbrella during the day, extra heat during the cooler evenings can be welcome.
Today, we’ll look at 5 fire pit reviews so you can bring some much-needed warmth and atmosphere to your garden gatherings.
We’ll also give you a rundown on what to look for when you are buying the best fire pit.
So first thing’s first…
What are these ingenious contraptions?
Portable heaters are highly effective. Unfortunately, they can also be rather expensive.
That’s where a fire pit fills the gap.
These mobile fireplaces are highly portable, easy to clean and you can set them up without any tiresome installation.
If you want to multi-task, shoot for a grilling fire pit. You can BBQ then eat by the glowing fire.
There are 3 principal reasons why investing in a fire pit is a smart move.
If you set your fire pit up properly, it’s an incredibly safe source of heat.
The majority of permanent fire pits have walls that will stop any potential sparks from going astray. Wire mesh can be added over the flame for an extra touch of security.
With gas fire pits, all you need to do is tweak a knob and you can control them safely and easily.
Fire pits provide both light and a burst of warmth. As if that’s not enough, you can cook with them as well.
Check out some recipes here and slap some meat on the BBQ.
Fire pits look good and cater for all your needs in one inexpensive package.
Whether you want a permanent or portable fire pit, you’re spoiled for choice.
With a wide selection of striking designs, you can ensure that your fire pit is the focal point of your patio area.
When it comes to portable pits, decide whether you prefer to use gas or wood for fuel and choose one that best suits your needs. For campers and outdoor lovers alike, a portable fire pit can add a new dimension to your experience.
Fire pits come in a host of different materials. Some are better in terms of durability while others place a premium on design.
We’ll look at 5 common materials used to make the best fire pits…
Think about exactly what you want from your fire pit. Perhaps you want a permanent feature set up on your patio. You might want something lightweight and ultra-portable for your camping trips. Being honest about your needs will help you to get the very best fire pit.
There are 3 broad sizes:
If you want to move your pit around frequently, a small one is by far your best bet. Whether it’s using it while you’re camping or popping it in the car for a BBQ at a friend’s house, portable pits deliver.
Look for a portable pit that will fold up to make your life easier. Some come with a handy carrying case.
Small fire pits are usually anywhere from 20 to 25 inches in diameter. This means they are compact enough for fuss-free transportation but powerful enough for your needs.
Next up is a mid-size fire pit. These are from 30 to 35 inches wide.
In many ways, these are the best compromise. You get a perfect combination of performance and maneuverability.
There’s a wide range of styles in this medium-sized bracket. They can all hold a nice stack of wood.
If you insist on a roaring fire and don’t mind a bit of maintenance, look for a large fire pit 40 to 45 inches across. These larger models are roughly the same size as a table.
Obviously, once you have installed a fire pit of these dimensions, it’s not straightforward to move it around.
For a permanent and highly effective source of heat and light in the garden, these bumper fire pits are hard to beat.
Fire pits run on 1 of 3 fuel sources:
The most expensive fire pits run on natural gas delivered by a professionally installed line.
These pits are not cheap to buy but in the long run they work out great value and they are very clean.
Using them is super-simple with a basic ignition and control system.
If you are looking for a long-term investment, roll with a natural gas fire pit.
For a convenient and user-friendly fire pit, go propane.
Push a button and you’ll have a fire going in seconds flat. You won’t be faced with any messy clean-up and you can control the flame precisely and easily.
On the flipside, liquid propane is expensive. You’ll also need to think about the cost of a potential replacement LP tank. If you don’t like the idea of an exposed tank, some models disguise it in a concealed unit.
Make sure you think carefully about a propane fire pit. Make sure it will work for you before launching in and buying something unsuitable.
The cheapest option, a wood-burning fire pit creates wonderful roaring flames. You’ll get heat and light in abundance.
You will need to put in more overall effort, though. You have to think about buying and storing wood and then getting rid of the ashes when your fire is dead.
For a simple but effective fire pit, a wood-burner is a decent starting point.
Once again, think carefully about how you plan to use your fire pit. This will help you to get the most fitting style.
Grilling pits are the obvious choice if you intend to do plenty of cooking. There’s nothing quite like the taste of a BBQ so look for one of these if you want more than just heat and light from your fire pit.
Some fire pits are designed to serve as a table. Sit around a unique and striking heated table or just pop some drinks on there as you relax under your patio umbrella.
If you simply want a nice source of glowing heat, a basic fire pit is perfectly adequate.
Think about your needs and buy accordingly. There is no right or wrong answer but you have a huge array of fire pits at your disposal Get the best one for you!
Now you have a decent understanding of what it takes to get the best fire pit for your needs, we’ll check out some reviews.
If you take your time and check out what each of these products has to offer, finding the best one for your personal situation should be stress-free.
Steel and faux-stone
First up in our look at the best fire pits is the Landmann 26364, an understated black 23 ½-inch in steel that will last the distance.
This is a fire-burning pit. You’ll get a poker thrown in and there’s a handy spark screen to prevent any rogue embers going astray.
If you need to move this lightweight and portable pit around, a couple of handles make your life easier.
The cutaway design of this fire pit means that as well as heat you can get plenty of subdued lighting as well.
For a decorative yet durable fire pit that doesn’t cost the earth, the Landmann 26364 tops our fire pit reviews. It’s the perfect mix of aesthetics, performance and durability at a keen price.
Next in our fire pit reviews is a no-nonsense hexagonal bowl from Best Choice products.
The pedestal base and intricate lattice bowl both have 6 sides. The design is striking enough to complement any garden furniture.
Wood-burning and compatible with a range of woods, you can relax without worrying about the expense of propane.
At 25 inches across, this pit is small enough to be considered portable but substantial enough to look at home on the patio as a permanent focal point.
For a durable and compact fire pit that looks great and will last for years, check this out today and see if the design is to your taste.
Sun Joe’s cast stone fire pit is much more substantial measuring in at 35 inches.
The heat resistant bowl is 29 inches across and there’s a 24-inch screen for your safety.
With an incredibly attractive cast stone base, this beautiful fire pit would look at home in any surroundings.
Pull up some chairs, throw on some wood and kick back to relax while you watch the flames dance before your eyes.
While this is not the cheapest option, you get an ornamental centerpiece rather than merely a functional source of heat.
As we near the end of our fire pit reviews, here’s a mid-size 32-inch from Zeny that delivers in fine style.
This is a bulky unit at just under 30 pounds so it’s best to set it up in your garden and be done with. This is not a portable pit.
Finished in steel with a faux-stone design, this square pit has enough space around the edges to pop your glass on while you rack up some food on the charcoal rack provided. You’ll also get a poker bundled in so you can get some skewers of meat going in no time.
With a mesh cover over the grill and a cloth cover to protect it when not in use, you can throw on some wood to get a fierce fire the safe way.
If you’re looking for a great multipurpose fire pit that won’t break the bank, check out this Zeny today.
Finishing up our look at the best fire pits is a round 30-incher from AZ Patio Heaters. You can also opt for a square or scroll design.
Slate tiles sit around the edge of a large dome with a mesh screen. Aesthetics play an important role in fire pits. You want something that looks good and does the intended job. This round pit excels on all fronts.
Although it’s a fairly sizeable piece of equipment, this pit is surprisingly portable.
The deep bowl is great for roaring fires. You can rustle yourself up some food as you warm your hands by the flickering flames.
You’ll get a 1-year limited warranty so you can buy with complete confidence.
We hope you have found some inspiration in these fire pit reviews as a way to stay warm in the garden without needing an expensive heating solution.
Spending out on garden tools, whether it’s a new chain for your chainsaw or a submersible pump for your pond seems second nature. We expect to pay for gardening equipment. Try treating yourself to something that might not be strictly necessary but will allow you to enjoy relaxing in your garden after you have put in so much hard work.
Feel free to reach out with any questions or feedback you might have. We love to hear from our readers and try to help in any way we can.
Now get that fire pit going!
Garden maintenance takes on many forms and demands a wide assortment of tools.
Cutting and trimming takes on many forms. It all depends on your personal circumstances and the type of work you want to do.
Today, we’ll look at an old classic: the chainsaw.
As well as checking out 5 electric chainsaw reviews, we’ll show you what to look out for when you are trying to find the best model for your needs.
First thing’s first…
Although the first thing that springs to mind with chainsaws is a heavy-duty piece of kit for loggers or forestry workers, they are surprisingly useful for the average home gardener.
If you have a large garden with trees, trimming and maintenance is essential. From lopping off unwieldy branches to general pruning, chainsaws do the job efficiently and effectively.
What style of chainsaw should you get, though?
For really serious wood cutting, especially out in the forest, gas-powered chainsaws are the smart choice. If you have a large tree or big projects, these powerhouses are noisy but get the job done in no time.
Today, we’ll focus on the best electric chainsaws. These are much quieter and better suited to lighter pruning and trimming in the yard or even indoors. Although they are less powerful, they are also lighter and more maneuverable.
If you’re looking for a hulking beast, check out our look at the best professional chainsaws. If you want something smaller for home use, read on…
If you’re set on an electric chainsaw, you’ve got 2 main choices straight off the bat:
While you will be restricted by the need for a power outlet, you don’t need to worry about downtime for charging a corded chainsaw.
If you opt for a corded model, an extension cord or generator can give you added freedom of movement. Make sure that any cord you use is rated for outdoor use.
The best electric chainsaws overall are cordless and battery-powered. The higher the power in volts, the more powerful the chainsaw. Most batteries are lithium-ion and built to last.
These are not quite so powerful and you will need to monitor the battery to ensure that it has enough charge for your needs.
For versatility and a proven home cutting solution, cordless electric chainsaws are lightweight, easy to use and perfect for lighter gardening duties.
One of the most critical measurements when it comes to chainsaws is the length of the guide bar. This is taken from where the chain enters the housing to the tip.
Bar length is the active cutting area. It translates to the biggest piece of wood you can cut with a single pass. With smaller chainsaws, you can still cut longer lengths but you’ll need a second or third pass.
If you think about the lengths of wood you are likely to cut and add 2 inches, that should be a perfect match.
Most electric chainsaws have a guide bar from 14 inches to 20 inches.
The downside of longer bar lengths is a less balanced feel to the chainsaw and more chance of kickback. This is when the end of the guide bar comes into contact with another object. If the wood pinches the chain, it can kick back in a swift, violent reverse action.
It goes without saying that using a chainsaw can be potentially very dangerous.
It’s critical to wear safety goggles, protective clothing like chainsaw chaps and to exercise extreme caution when cutting. It’s possible to buy combined head protection systems. These have a hard hat with integrated hearing protection and visor.
There are plenty of anti-kickback chains available and these are well worth considering.
Every year, there are over 100,000 chainsaw-related injuries in the US alone. Don’t become one of these statistics. Take your time, dress appropriately and respect the power of your chainsaw.
Using a chainsaw is a pretty physical endeavor.
When it comes to buying the best electric chainsaw, it’s essential to be honest about your levels of strength and fitness. Think about how long you will be operating your chainsaw for and take into account how you fare carrying comparable weights for that length of time.
Once you have factored in fatigue and the weight of the chainsaw, you should be able to find one perfectly tailored to your requirements.
Now that you have a solid overview of what to look for, it’s time for our electric chainsaw reviews. We’ll look at 5 of the leading products to simplify your buying decision and ensure you get the right tool for the job.
Guide Bar Length (Inches))
First up in our look at the best electric chainsaws is a consistent best-seller from the highly reputable WORX.
This 16-inch electric model offers similar power to a gas-fueled chainsaw without the noise or fumes.
The 14.5 amp motor kicks out 3.5 HP and will help you to cut through even thicker pieces of wood without straining yourself.
With automatic lubrication, you won’t need to keep oiling the chain. This is also kept at the correct tension for hundreds of uses and limits the chance of over-tightening.
There’s a low kickback bar and a built-in brake so that there’s very little chance of you coming to grief. Safety should always be uppermost with the best electric chainsaw.
With the added bonus of a decent 3-year warranty, you can buy without a headache and take care of all the cutting in your garden with this powerful but lightweight chainsaw.
Next up in our look at the best electric chainsaws is a cordless 12-inch from the industry heavyweight BLACK + DECKER.
The LCS1240 has a 40V lithium-ion battery that can hold a charge for up to 18 months. This will give you fade-free performance. There’s nothing worse than a battery that starts to lose power long before the cycle is complete.
Although this cordless chainsaw packs quite a punch, it’s also very compact and lightweight at 10 pounds. With no cord to encumber you, this really is a maneuverable and capable piece of kit.
Chain tensioning and oiling are taken care of automatically so there’s very little by the way of tiresome maintenance.
Although there are cheaper chainsaws out there, if you are looking for a no-nonsense addition to your power tool arsenal, pop the BLACK + DECKER LCS1240 on your shortlist. You will not be disappointed.
GreenWorks have built a reputation for top-notch gardening tools and power tools at a reasonable price point. While they are not the cheapest available, they represent exceptional value for money.
This 40-volt cordless electric chainsaw is available with battery and charger or as a bare tool for a lower price. Make sure you get the correct package.
You’ll get plenty of safety features with very little chance of kickback but no compromise on cutting power. For such a powerful unit, the 20312 is also highly portable at less than 7 pounds.
There’s automatic oiling to save you messing around and you’ll get very little vibration.
With an instant electric start to save you all the hassle of a gas-powered alternative, you can enjoy a torquey and able chainsaw that’s built to last the distance.
As an added bonus, this is compatible with 14 different GreenWorks lawn tools for a fully integrated solution.
As we near the end of our look at the best electric chainsaws, here’s a great kit from the legendary Makita, the XCU02PT.
The kit we looked at includes a pair of 18V lithium-ion batteries in addition to the chainsaw. You can also buy this as a bare tool or opt for an even pricier kit which also includes a grinder. These batteries charge remarkably quickly so you won’t be inconvenienced with a lengthy wait.
With a 12-inch guide bar, you’ll need to make more than one pass with longer lengths but you can enjoy precise cutting and this chainsaw will cope with most regular garden duties.
Even though it packs a punch, the Makita is a very quiet tool so you can beaver away without disturbing the neighbors.
Plenty of safety features allow you to work confidently even if you are not the most experience chainsaw operator. Both the tool and battery are covered by a 3-year warranty. This is a very strong contender for the best electric chainsaw. It only sits at fourth on our list due to its reasonably high price.
We will round out our electric chainsaw reviews with a corded model from the tool giant BLACK + DECKER. Although, as we mentioned, cordless generally win out, there are some situations in which a corded chainsaw works best.
With a highly capable 15-amp motor and a generous 18-inch guide bar, you’ll make very light work of even ambitious cutting tasks.
As with most of the best electric chainsaws, you’ll enjoy tool-free tensioning and you can rest secure in the knowledge that the chain brake will step in if there’s any kickback.
While corded models can give you less room for maneuver, the raw power you get in return goes some way to make up for this. If you do not need to roam around and you are prepared to deal with the inconvenience of a power cord, the CS1518 might just be the best fit for your needs.
You’ll be covered by the usual BLACK + DECKER 2-year warranty so you can buy stress-free.
We hope you enjoyed these chainsaw reviews. If you take your time and check out any of the options above, you’ll take the sting out of chopping firewood without breaking the bank.
If you don’t want to break out the log splitter, having the best electric chainsaw is the next best thing. You can cut down even large volumes of logs down to size without straining yourself.
Feel free to get in touch if there are any aspects of gardening you would like us to cover. We are always interested in feedback from our readers.
Water features bring a garden to life.
Whether you want a pond for your precious koi carp or a decorative area surrounded by plants, you’ll need to invest in some equipment for best results.
You’ll also certainly need to think about aeration.
Luckily, we’re here to make that job easier. Today, we’ll examine some pond aerator reviews and show you 5 of the very best products for your money.
If you’re on the hunt for the best pond aerator, read on!
If you want your pond to remain in peak health, proper aeration is key. It’s doubly important if you plan to keep fish.
You’ll find that a degree of oxygen will diffuse into the water on the surface. Unless you have an enormous pond or a bare handful of fish, most ponds will need a helping hand when it comes to oxygenation.
So, while not every pond requires aeration, every pond would find it beneficial.
A wise selection of plants can do wonders for the quantity of dissolved oxygen in your pond.
Although most plants will grow pretty easily with very little maintenance, be careful when you are choosing. Some can be rather too much for smaller ponds. Canadian pond weed is an example of something too vigorous unless you have a huge pond and don’t mind getting your hands dirty. Other types of pond weed, Elodea crispa and Egeria densa work well and oxygenate efficiently.
Not only will these plants enhance aeration, they can also assist with the overall health of your pond. By absorbing excessive nutrients, algal blooms are kept at bay.
Any features like a fountain or waterfall can be very helpful alongside the best pond aerator.
You win 3 ways with this type of cascading splash:
The majority of pond pumps have an attachment that allows you to hook up a fountain fuss-free.
Cascades and waterfalls require a little more effort but the effects can be stunning. And they not only look great, they integrate with a good aeration system to ensure your pond is in tip-top shape.
This might seem obvious but it’s crucial that you buy the best pond aerator for the dimensions of your water feature. Aeration kits are usually rated according to the capacity and depth of pond they will service.
Pay close attention to the depth. If you go deeper than recommended, you risk ruining the diaphragm and reducing the operational life of your pump.
It’s not a question of getting the best pond aerator but rather of focusing on the best pond aerator for you.
The primary advantage of aerating is protecting your precious fish.
By adding air, you also help to support beneficial bacteria. This means if you have any issues with water quality or algae, there’s a chance you can improve the situation by aerating.
The air output of pond aerators is given as CFM. This can be a useful measurement but if you buy the right size kit for the capacity of your pond, most will aerate perfectly adequately. More output does not necessarily translate to superior results.
As long as you have the size sorted out, budget clearly plays an important part. Think about how much you can afford to spend and stick to it. This alone will narrow your options and make life easier.
Warranties are obviously worth looking into. Most aeration kits come covered from 2-3 years so you’re in safe hands.
Overall, buying the best pond aerator is really not so difficult. If you make sure that the specs of the kit you want exceeds the demands of your pond, you’ll be good to go.
Now it’s time for our pond aerator reviews. We will present 5 options that are all very capable kits that will give your water all the air it needs without breaking the bank.
Pond Capacity (gallons)
First up is an extremely inexpensive aeration kit from Laguna suitable for all sizes of ponds.
You’ll get a highly capable air pump kicking out a constant 4 PSI.
Also thrown in is 30 feet of weatherproof tubing, an air stone and a float.
The manufacturer claims this kit is suitable for all pond sizes. No specific further information is available regarding capacity or depth.
Next up in our look at the best pond aerators is the 75000 double outlet from Aquascape.
This stealthy piece of kit offers power and durability without the noise that plagues some aeration systems.
The air line is good for all weather and you’ll get 2 weighted air stones.
The Aquascape 75000 is ideal for ponds up to 2000 gallons and 8.5 feet deep.
This aerator needs remarkably little maintenance so you can set it up and relax confident that your fish will get all the air they need.
AirMax’s PondAir 4 kit is good for ponds up to 2000 gallons and 2 feet deep.
With 0.30 CFM of airflow, the pump runs with little fanfare. It’s not only quiet and efficient, it’s also very easy on power consumption. It’ll cost you less than a dollar a month to run.
You’ll get 2 round air stones, 4 rolls of 30 foot line, a compressor and 4 check valves.
Although this is not the cheapest kit available, it’s still superb value for money. If you want to treat your koi well, this pump will repay your investment.
TetraPond’s 19706 air pump kit is an incredible bargain.
This air pump will deal with ponds up to 5000 gallons. The pump will generate a flow of 100 gallons per hour.
TetraPond present this kit as a winter survival solution and that’s exactly what it is. Why leave things to chance and risk harming your valuable fish? Getting the best pond aerator translates to a better quality of life for your fish.
You’ll get an air pump, 300 feet of tubing, 2 air stones, valves, connectors and a 15 foot power cord. Everything you need is included.
For a no-nonsense, energy-efficient kit, the 19706 is well worth popping on your shortlist.
We’ll round out our look at the best pond aerators with the AirPro, an extremely expensive kit for aeration on a massive scale.
This water aerator caters for ponds up to an acre in size and 50 feet deep.
The motor draws down 1.7 amps and gives out 2.3 CFM.
You’ll get a compressor thrown in along with 100 foot of weighted tubing and a diffuser.
If you are looking to aerate enormous ponds and you want a first-class piece of kit that will go the distance, think seriously about the AirPro.
We hope you’ve taken some useful information from our pond aerator reviews.
Keeping a garden and pond seems to involve constant maintenance but the best things in life generally require a little effort.
Drop us a line any time if you need help with any aspect of gardening. We love to hear from our readers.
Now make sure that pond has plenty of air!
Gardening tools extend far beyond the garden these days.
There are many outdoor pursuits and survival reasons for buying the best gardening equipment.
One constant of outdoor life is chopping wood.
Today, we’ll look at some splitting maul reviews. When it comes to making light work of large piles of lumber, there’s simply no substitute for the best splitting maul.
First thing’s first, though…
Why bother cutting wood by hand in the first place?
It’s in these survival situations or if you live and work somewhere pretty remote that the best splitting maul is invaluable.
What about the power? Chainsaws need fuelling up.
While a chainsaw is efficient, it can also be dangerous. There’s far less chance of coming to grief with an axe than a powerful tool like a chainsaw.
A splitting maul tops the tree when it comes to manually cutting wood.
Mauls designed to split wood usually have heavy heads. They weigh in at around 8 pounds so you’ve got plenty of power behind your swing. You’ll have all the impetus you need to drive down into big logs.
All the best splitting mauls have long handles. You need two hands to use them effectively. This is not a light spot of pruning with your scissors. Working with a splitting maul is hard physical work.
Often, splitting mauls have flat butts. This allows you to smash down on it with a sledgehammer for any added force necessary.
If you plan to work mainly with hardwoods, a maul is better than any other form of axe.
A splitting axe is a less hardcore version of a maul.
Where you can fell wood with a maul, an axe performs best on pre-chopped wood. You can cut your firewood down for size without needing to break out the chainsaw chaps.
Most splitting axes are long-handled like the maul. There are one-handed axes available.
If you want to whittle smaller logs into kindling, an axe is ideal. If you have more ambitious cutting needs, it won’t be man enough.
You use an axe or maul for 3 main reasons:
There are so many different types of axe from the more conventional through to heavy-duty alternatives like the splitting maul. There are felling axes, tomahawks and hatchets. The world is your oyster if you want the best splitting maul.
The type of axe you choose dictates the sort of work you can undertake. Get the right one for the jobs you have in mind. Think about where you will be using the axe.
The profile of the axe is the leading factor here.
Thinner profiles are much better for cutting. All the power goes where the edge meets the wood. With a thin point of contact, that power is forced into a smaller area so is more effective.
Splitting profiles are thicker. This more resembles a wedge shape and will force the wood apart in two directions as required.
You usually cut across the grain and split through the grain.
Axes and mauls vary in size enormously.
From a small pocket axe for something suitable for felling trees, there’s a size for every cutting requirement.
Longer handles offer more power. You’ll get more precision from a smaller axe.
Most standard splitting mauls have 36-inch handles.
Now you have a decent overview of splitting axes and mauls, it’s time for our splitting maul reviews.
We have chosen 5 diverse options so there is something for every need and budget.
First up in our splitting maul reviews is a powerful 36-inch classic from Fiskars.
Fiskars have a reputation for producing top quality garden tools without breaking the bank.
8 pounds is the benchmark for a splitting maul and whether you’re splitting wood or driving wedges, you’ll have all the power you need.
This maul is good for chopping down even larger logs into more manageable sizes. The IsoCore system dampens down the vibration so you can whack away without straining yourself.
There’s an extended grip and a flare that minimizes the chance of any kick so you can use this maul for long periods without straining yourself.
You’re covered by a no quibbles, lifetime guarantee so you can buy in complete confidence.
Next up in our look at the best splitting mauls is another 36-incher, this time from industry heavyweight Truper.
If you want to split large volumes of wood, this double-injected fiberglass handle gives ultimate performance without any menacing vibration. The rubber grip is easy to hold and will stop your hands from slipping.
Whether you want to chop some firewood down to size or split some heavy logs, the 36-inch handle gives you plenty of leverage and performance when you need it most. If this is too large for your requirements, the Truper is available in a range of other sizes.
The striking face is round bevel-edged and drop-forged for maximum efficiency.
With a limited lifetime warranty for complete peace of mind, you can invest in this awesome Truper splitting maul without worrying about it letting you down.
Next in our look at the best splitting mauls is a much more expensive axe from the highly reputable Gransfors Bruks.
With a 31 ½-inch handle for plenty of power and a heavy 6-pound head, this is a definite contender for the best splitting maul on the market. While it is not quite so large as many mauls, this is great for smaller users.
The poll is specially designed so you can hammer away with a splitting wedge when needed.
There’s a top-notch leather sheath thrown in for good measure.
You’ll get a 20-year limited warranty which makes it clear how much Gransfors Bruks stand behind this superb splitter.
As we near the end of our splitting maul reviews, another great and extremely affordable axe from Mintcraft.
This falls somewhere between a standard axe and a more substantial maul. With a 31-inch handle made from hickory and a 6-pound head, you’ll be able to slice your way through even thicker chunks of wood.
The blade is ground down so that it’s concave and thin. There’s a steel collar for great grip.
With a leather sheath provided and a 20-year limited warranty, you can buy this mail without worrying about the head falling off six months later.
When it comes to splitting mauls, not everyone wants the very biggest possible option. If you want a perfect combination of power and precision at a very affordable price point, think long and hard about the Mintcraft PRO 34004.
Finishing up our look at the best splitting mauls on the market is a much more compact axe/maul from Estwing.
If you want a one-handed chopping solution that still packs plenty of power, this 14-incher gives you adequate leverage and force to chop even hard, stubborn logs fuss-free.
Forged in a single piece, the steel head is complemented by a non-slip rubber grip. This handle also lessens any shock and vibration to make chopping a breeze.
Estwing’s concept when making the Fireside Friend was to emulate the capability of larger mauls in a much dinkier package. They succeeded in fine style. If you want a turbo-charged splitting maul without needing a huge, heavy tool, check out the E3-FF4. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
We hope you have enjoyed these splitting maul reviews.
Getting the best splitting maul is a matter of determining exactly what you want from your axe and buying accordingly.
Feel free to get in touch at any time. We respond to any questions or feedback as promptly as possible.
If you embrace the outdoor life, getting yourself some survival tools is well worthwhile.
In any kind of survival situation, chances are you won’t have access to your complete tool kit. Having suitable hand-powered tools could save the day.
We’ll look today at the best backpacking saw for a variety of needs.
First, we’ll show you how to analyze your requirements and narrow down the search. You can then check out what you should think about before buying and finish up with our backpacking saw reviews.
The most important part of the process with this handy tool is making sure you get the right one for your needs. Not all saws are created equal.
If you take some simple pointers on board, getting the best backpacking saw is not rocket science.
There are 3 main types of backpacking saw at your disposal:
If you’re looking for the best overall hand saw for wood, the bow saw is the clear winner. Even if you want to cut up some chunky logs for firewood, a bow saw delivers the power you want every time. The ability to change out the blades easily is a nice bonus.
The drawback of a bow saw is that it’s a much more cumbersome option.
For anyone looking to cut mainly smaller branches or little logs, a folding saw has its place. Very light and compact, having a folding saw is a useful back-up.
The pocket chainsaw offers you a great cutting solution in the ultimate compact package. You can pop this in your backpack and grab it when it counts.
The performance of your backpacking saw and the type of wood it will respond best to depends to a large extent on the blade.
On the blade, the teeth play an instrumental role.
TPI is the number of teeth per inch. This is how blades are usually rated.
The greater the number of teeth, the smoother the cut.
If you are mainly going to cut hardwoods and undertake general bushcraft jobs, blades with medium teeth work best.
Blades with larger teeth cut faster and work well with softer woods.
Think about how you will use your saw and buy accordingly.
Think about what happens in the event of blade failure…
If you opt for a folding saw or a pocket chainsaw, there’s not much you can do. If the cutting parts breaks down, it’s not replaceable.
With a bow saw, you can quickly and easily swap the blades. It’s good practice to carry some spares with you. Blades are cheap and take up next to no space.
When it comes to finding the best backpacking saw, it’s important to think about why you actually need this saw. What do you plan to do with it?
If this tool is going to be a part of your survival kit, you’ll want to make sure it doesn’t let you down. Backpacking saws are not expensive so it’s worth paying out to get a reliable workhorse that won’t let you down.
Maybe you intend to throw the saw in the trunk of the car as a pure emergency measure. If so, you’ll want something ultra-dependable.
For saws that will be used for casual yard work, it is not quite so crucial if a blade fails or something goes wrong.
By honestly analyzing your circumstances, you can more easily choose the best backpacking saw. This starts with selecting the type, as outlined above.
The type and quality of metal and other materials make or break a backpacking saw.
Check out the product specifications. More importantly, read some impartial user reviews. Most people are pretty honest and upfront when reviewing a product they’ve already spent their money on. They will share the positive aspects along with the drawbacks.
Time spent at this stage could prevent you from blundering in and getting the wrong saw for your needs.
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution. Think about how you’ll use your saw and also how frequently you will use it.
Like with many elements of choosing the best backpacking saw, size is of relative importance.
If you want to use your saw in the garden, you don’t need to be as concerned with weight or portability. As a substitute for a chainsaw for your firewood, a bigger bow saw might suit you best.
For those out on the trail or thinking of a survival situation, needs might differ.
Here, the portability of a pocket chainsaw is a huge selling point. They are pocket-sized and great in an emergency.
Longer chainsaws are great for dealing with high branches. If you are mainly planning to cut down lower, a shorter chainsaw is a smart move.
Depending on your needs, you might need to make some sacrifice between portability and performance. Consider buying more than one tool if you want to maximize your coverage.
Now you have a decent overview, it’s time to check out some of the best backpacking saws on the market.
Pocket wire saw
First up in our backpacking saw reviews is a superb and adaptable bow saw from Truper. This saw is finished in high visibility orange so you certainly shouldn’t lose it in a hurry.
The model that we checked out has a 21-inch blade. There are 2 larger sizes if you have heavier-duty cutting needs.
With a simple cam-lever system to help with the tension, you can enjoy a tight blade at all times with superior cutting results.
Aside from a quick clean after using the saw and a drop of oil, there’s no other maintenance required.
Truper offer up a sheath to protect your saw when it’s not in use. It’s extremely flimsy and not really worth bothering with. It’s advisable to get an alternative sheath and to store your saw very carefully.
If you want to cut through even fairly large branches without breaking a sweat, the Truper 30255 is an inexpensive, top quality backpacking saw that’s built to last.
You’re spoiled for choice if you want a folding saw but Bahco’s Laplander is very tough to beat.
The blade is 7 ½ inches and you’ll get 7 TPI (teeth per inch) for a versatile cutting tool. Whether you want to slice through green wood, drier timber or even harder materials, the Laplander copes admirably. The XT toothing delivers a smooth cut every single time.
It’s not possible to sharpen the teeth on this blade. The teeth have been hardened in such a way as to make this impossible. Luckily, replacement blades are not expensive. Swapping them is super-simple. Just undo a screw and you’re good to go.
The handle is comfortable so you can cut for hours without blisters. It’s large enough to accommodate most hand sizes.
Backpacking saws are generally used more for general bushcraft and survival situations than for gardening. The lightweight nature of this highly portable saw means you can throw it in your bag easily without taking up much space.
You’ll get a handy lanyard and belt bundled with your saw.
For an affordable and versatile backpacking saw that will deal with most cutting needs, check out the Bahco Laplander today. It will not disappoint.
Next in our list of the best backpacking saws is an outstanding pocket chainsaw from the highly respected Chainmate.
This short video shows a pocket chainsaw in action.
For survivalists, campers and outdoorsman, this nifty approach to cutting is a consistent best-seller with just cause. You get quality and affordability in one appetizing package.
The carbon steel teeth are a tweaked version of what you’d find on a regular chainsaw. The Chainmate is available in this 24-inch version as well as 36 inches and 48 inches if you have more demanding cutting requirements.
From small pieces of wood right through thicker branches, this is like a real chainsaw but with you in place of the motor. Whether you cut alone or with the help of a friend, you can make light work of even bulkier timber.
One thing to be aware of… If you are cutting down a tree, the pocket chainsaw tends to bind a lot as you get toward the end. If this happens, flip the wood through 180 degrees and start cutting on the other side.
Even though the price is incredibly low, you’ll also get a pouch and belt clip included for your convenience.
For a superb alternative to a conventional backpacking saw, the Chainmate punches above its weight.
The best backpacking saws are generally very portable and this innovative pocket wire saw from Yosoo takes up little space while delivering great cutting results.
This crafty little saw is perfect for camping, rescue work, hunting, fishing or many other outdoor applications.
The overall wire length is about 27 inches with a diameter of 2.4 inches. You can cut wood or plastic, rubber or metal, even bone with the lethal saw teeth on the steel wire.
This saw works in a very similar fashion to the Chainmate. You simply grab one of the rings in each hand and saw in whatever direction you need fuss-free.
For a hyper-portable backpacking saw that will cope with anything you put in its way, the Yosoo wire saw is worth popping on your shortlist.
Last in our backpacking saw reviews is a great little combo from SurvivalTech offering fantastic value for money.
In addition to a 36-inch pocket chainsaw, you’ll also get a multi-tool and knife for good measure.
The multi-tool has 14 separate functions. This is an ideal piece of kit to chuck in your bag for any camping trip. Never get caught short again without the tool you need.
The credit card sized knife can fit easily in your wallet.
When it comes to the pocket chainsaw, you’ll be able to cut on through a tree trunk up to 1 foot wide. This is quite amazing for something weighing in at less than 1 pound!
Backpacking saws come in all shapes and sizes. If you are looking for something cheap that still delivers performance, this 3-in-1 package merits further investigation.
We hope you’ve found this look at the best backpacking saws useful and informative.
Please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’ve got any questions about any aspect of gardening. We’re always delighted to hear from our readers.
It’s that time of year again…
The summer is approaching and you can get outside for a BBQ or to lounge by the heated pool.
With gardening, it seems natural to spend money on tools to take the sweat out of maintenance…
Don’t forget to spend money on relaxing in your garden as well. You deserve it.
Today, we’ll look at some patio umbrella reviews.
Whether you are kicked back poolside or laid in your back yard, you don’t always want to be in the direct sunlight.
That’s where a patio umbrella comes fully to the fore. With very little effort, you can enjoy a versatile shade solution without spending a fortune.
In a word, shade.
If you’re outside, it’s important to have shelter from the elements. Whether it’s reducing the time you spend in the harmful UV rays of the sun or hunkering down against the rain or wind, shelter is an inbuilt need.
Commercial food outlets often provide patio umbrellas for outdoor seating areas. You can munch your food without being assailed by the sun.
Right off the bat, you need to decide between the 2 main styles:
The type we will primarily focus on today, patio umbrellas have long been the industry standard.
These umbrellas have a central pole that extends to a base so they are more limited than cantilever versions with their offset base to maximize space.
Although we will feature one offset umbrella today, check out our recent article on cantilever patio umbrellas here.
Cantilever umbrellas are more expensive but you’ll get more freedom with the offset base. There’s no pole down the middle to cramp your style as you sip cocktails with friends.
When you’re seeking shade, you need to be aware that the sun will keep on moving.
The best patio umbrellas let you perform a series of tilts so that you can chase the sun without getting up and moving things around.
Think about the base provided with the umbrella you have in mind.
Some bases require additional weighting down. Look into this and take steps to further secure your base. The last thing you want is a heavy umbrella to come crashing down on a table of plates and glasses.
Give umbrellas with wooden poles a miss. They are prone to breakage. Also, the sealant used for jointing can wreak havoc on the umbrella.
You’re much better off shooting for an umbrella with aluminum poles for added strength and support.
One of the most crucial factors to get right when looking for the best patio umbrella is size.
As a rule of thumb, look for an umbrella 5 feet wider than the table you intend to use it with. You won’t get adequate protection if you go tighter than this. It will look unnatural if you go for something much bigger.
Umbrellas are available in a wide range of sizes fit for most purposes.
Only you know how much importance you attach to the color of your umbrella.
Think about where it will go and what other surroundings you need to co-ordinate. Choose the best color you can come up with. There’s something for most palates.
Last but by no means least in any buying decision is price.
Put simply, think about your budget and spend as much as you can within that. Patio umbrellas are not expensive and the better ones are built to last. You should buy a top-rated model which will save you money in the long run. Imagine buying a cheap and flimsy umbrella only to find it comes apart with the first gust of wind.
By fixing on a set maximum budget, you can automatically narrow down your options to make researching your purchase that much easier.
Now you’ve got an idea of the basics, it’s time to move on to the patio umbrella reviews...
Diameter of Umbrella(feet)
First up in our look at the best patio umbrellas is a great budget offering from Giantex that doesn’t sacrifice quality.
This tan umbrella is made from polyester fabric draped over a steel pole and ribs. The dust and water are kept away along with the sun.
Some umbrellas don’t cope well with rain but the Giantex has got you covered in the event of a downpour.
The model featured is tan but this umbrella is also available in burgundy and beige so there’s a color to suit everyone.
The stand is not included with this umbrella so factor that into your buying decision.
At 10 foot across, you can have a good handful of friends over for dinner and you’ll all be covered in style.
Assembly couldn’t be easier so you’re good to go straight out the box.
If you want no-nonsense coverage on a budget, this Giantex 10 foot umbrella is well worth popping on your shortlist.
Next up in our look at the best patio umbrellas is a sizeable 9-foot from Abba Patio at a very keen price.
At 9 foot across, you can create a shaded area for 4 to 6 people sat around a table without anyone feeling cramped or edged out into the sun.
The polyester umbrella won’t fade or rip easily. It protects you against harmful UV rays and is also water resistant. The color is fixed with a solution and rated at 1000 hours.
The fabric is draped over a powder-coated aluminum pole with some handy steel ribs to strengthen it further.
Air flow is crucial with patio umbrellas. There’s always a danger of a gust of wind upending your umbrella. A large and heavy unit crashing down on a table of plates and glasses is the last thing you need. The vented Abba Patio minimizes that risk.
There’s a user-friendly tilt and crank system. Popping the umbrella up or down is a cinch.
For an affordable and durable patio umbrella that will protect you when it counts, check out this 9-footer from Abba Patio.
Next up in our patio umbrella reviews is a more expensive but more luxurious model from Sunnydaze Décor.
The 9 foot umbrella is made from rugged polyester and provides enough shade for a table of up to 6 people.
Each of the 8 ribs features 3 little LED lights. These are solar powered so cost you nothing to run while offering muted and relaxing lighting. This is a nice touch on an umbrella that’s still quite reasonably priced.
One thing to note is that the base is not included with this model. Your umbrella will fit most standard bases with a 1.5-inch opening.
Opening and closing the umbrella is as simple as operating the crank system. There’s a vent for added stability in the event of strong winds.
You’ll get a 1-year limited warranty so you can buy in complete confidence.
If you want to add a little brightness to your outside surroundings, this neat multi-purpose patio umbrella merits further investigation.
As we near the end of our patio umbrella reviews, we’ll look at an attractive 9-footer from Sundale Outdoor.
The pictured umbrella is light blue but it’s also available in several other colors. Think about how you want your new piece of kit to co-ordinate with existing décor and buy accordingly.
The 9-foot solution-dyed polyester is perfectly fade-resistant so you won’t be faced with an unsightly and dull umbrella after a month or two.
The standard 1.5-inch iron pole has 6 ribs for added support, also iron. These ribs are made from fiberglass. Each of these ribs comes with 4 LED lights. There’s a solar panel on top of the umbrella so you can get power without paying for it.
You will not get the base included with this umbrella. You can buy one here.
Although this is not the cheapest umbrella, particularly as you also need to invest in a base, you will not be disappointed. For a stable and eye-catching way to stay out of the shade, this umbrella is tough to beat. Only its high price point means it features lower down our list of the best patio umbrellas.
Last in our patio umbrella reviews is another 9-footer, this time from TropiShade.
You can open and shut the umbrella with ease using the crank lift. It will also tilt in 3 different positions to maximize your shade.
The durable polyester is weather-resistant and finished in a muted rust color. You’ll even get a cover thrown in making this exceptional overall value. If rust doesn’t do it for you, opt for beige, canvas or green instead.
With an aluminum frame and half a dozen fiberglass ribs, you’ll get a stable unit. The wind vent is a nice touch.
Although the base is not included, you can buy one separately. The pole is 1.375 inches so if you choose to go with a different base, make sure it fits!
For a cost-effective patio umbrella that will give you all the shade you need without breaking the bank, the TropiShade umbrella is a superb choice.
We hope you enjoyed these patio umbrella reviews and that your buying decision has been simplified.
Once you’ve decided on which type suits you best and considered weighting down the base, there’s not much more to it. Just sit back and relax in the shade.
You’re welcome to contact us if you’ve got any queries at all. We respond promptly and we’re always more than ready to help.
Gardens come in all shapes and sizes and if you have space enough for a pond, keeping fish is a satisfying way to add some color and interest to your garden.
But what fish should you choose?
Koi are known as nishikigoi in Japanese. This means “brocaded carp.” Koi are ornamental, colorful versions of the common carp.
Today, we’ll check out some koi pond pump reviews. If you plan to keep these magnificent fish, it’s crucial that you get the set-up right.
We looked a few weeks back at the best pond filter for your Koi. This article generated lots of feedback for more on koi so we will get started today with the best koi pond pumps available. We will move on to look at setting up your filtration system. Later in the month we will explore building a koi pond so you have all you need to get started!
It was the Chinese who first introduced bright coloring to the common carp. This was perhaps 2000 years ago.
The art of breeding koi, though, was perfected by the Japanese. Although koi are once again being bred in China, it’s in Japan where the best bloodlines are tended.
Koi normally grow anywhere from 24 to 36 inches. Some bumper varieties grow over 50 inches but conditions must be right and it’s no easy task to raise these giants.
These are expensive fish with the price decided by many factors:
You can keep koi indoors or outside.
Conditions need to be perfect for these fish to flourish. Getting the pond filter right is crucial. Koi produce enormous amounts of fish. This needs to be neatly filtered away.
You’ll also need to invest in the best koi pond pump so how do you go about choosing one?
Without a pump, there will be no movement in your water. This makes it super-simple for mosquitoes or other common pests to cause plenty of damage.
With the improved aeration offered by a pump, you can protect your precious koi while keeping any menaces away.
When it comes to pond pumps, you have 2 main choices:
Aside from these broad categories, there are many other variants available. From solar-powered pumps that will slash your power bill through to waterfall and axial pumps, there are many options at your disposal.
How do the submersible and external pumps differ?
Submersible pumps are easier to set up. They are hidden from sight and you won’t need any extra piping or messing around.
You’ll get very little noise from a submersible pump but they are rather prone to clogging.
As the name suggests, these pumps are popped outside the pond, often hidden away in a shrub or some bushes.
External pumps are slightly more efficient, very powerful and extremely cost-effective.
On the downside, you’ll need extra pipes to carry the water to and from the pump. They also kick out far more noise than submersibles.
There is no right or wrong answer for what works best. Think about the size and design of your pond along with your personal preferences.
Think about both the upfront cost and the ongoing running costs. You can generally see how many watts the pump will use and estimate how much it will cost you to keep it ticking over.
It’s a delicate balance to strike between flow rate, running expenses and installation. Go with what works best for you.
There is so much to think about when you are looking for a pump that it can all seem very confusing.
Before anything else, some simple pointers to make your life easier…
Now you have a decent overview, it’s time to check out the best koi pond pumps you can get for your money. Give your valuable fish the care they deserve without needing to spend a fortune.
Size of Pond(gallons
Flow Rate (gallons per hour
First up in our koi pond pump reviews is an affordable magnetic drive pump from the highly reputable TetraPond.
The model we looked at is suitable for ponds from 500 to 1000 gallons. There are other sizes available.
With an impressive flow rate of 1000 gallons per hour (GPH), this compact but powerful pump gives you all the water need for your beloved koi and it keeps on coming.
Ongoing running costs always come into play with any appliance you leave continually running. Fortunately, this pump is extremely energy efficient so you shouldn’t be stiffed with any outrageous power bills.
You’ll be able to service your waterfall, filter and fountain head with this pump so it’s very flexible. This manufacturer sells very simple waterfall kits if you want to experiment and you don’t yet have one.
There are 3 accessories available separately in addition to the pump cage which is bundled free of charge:
If you are looking for a no-nonsense, energy-efficient pump that will last the distance, this TetraPond is tough to beat.
Next up is an effective pond pump from Active Aqua, an industry heavyweight selling great products at reasonable prices.
This is a submersible pump and will kick out 1000 gallons per hour so it’s suitable for most regular koi ponds.
You’ll get a range of hose fittings to ensure that everything snaps nicely into place.
The mag drive construction means this pump is built to last. You’ll get removable foam filters, a handy 10-foot power cable and impellers. There are even some rubber feet to help ease any vibration.
You’re covered with a 1-year limited warranty in case anything goes amiss.
For an oil-free and environmentally-friendly experience, treat yourself to this submersible water pump from Active Aqua. Your fish will thank you.
The Patriot KP8000 is an expensive pump that comes consistently well reviewed by those who need a highly capable water pump for a larger operation. There are other models available ranging from the KP550 for smaller ponds right through to the KP10000 at the top of the tree.
The flow rate is impressive at 8000GPH. Hybrid drive technology leads to an incredibly efficient submersible pump to fully aerate even larger koi ponds.
Everything about this unit is engineered to work constantly and there’s a handy overload switch just in case things heat up too much.
You should use this pump inside a skimmer-style filter or some other form of pre-filtration. If not, you risk the pump getting nastily clogged up by pond debris.
You’ll get a solid 2-year warranty with the Patriot so you can buy without worrying about trouble further down the line.
For a pump that punches above its weight, check out the Patriot KP8000. It delivers in fine style.
As we near the end of our look at the best koi pond pumps, here’s a smart choice from Alpine, the PAL3100.
This energy-efficient submersible pump from Alpine has an oil-free ceramic shaft coupled with ceramic impeller shafts for maximum longevity.
The pump, vortex impeller and pre-filter can be quickly and easily assembled. You won’t need any tools.
As with most pumps, there are variable sizes on offer. The one we looked at has an awesome flow rate of 3100 gallons per hour so even larger koi ponds can be catered for.
You can use this pump vertically or horizontally for total flexibility.
For an effective water pump solution that will leave your koi very well cared for, the Alpine PAL3100 is a best-seller with just cause.
Last in our list of the best koi pond pumps is an exceptionally cheap pump from EcoPlus that doesn’t stint on performance.
This is a much smaller pump than the others with a flow rate of just 396GPH. It’s ideal for ponds of 400 to 700 gallons. There are many other sizes on offer if this is not appropriate for your pond. Get the size right because the flow is non-adjustable.
You can use this pump either in-line or as a submersible. There’s a pre-wired power cord for your convenience. There are several barbed and threaded fittings.
There’s an inbuilt strainer to help safeguard the impeller against damage. A ceramic shaft and bearing to ensure this pump won’t let you down.
From ponds and fountains through to hydroponic systems, this multi-purpose pump will not disappoint.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our look at these koi pond pump reviews.
Raising koi is incredibly rewarding. You owe it to yourself and to your fish to get the very best koi pond pump to keep things running smoothly.
If you’ve got any questions at all, please get in touch. We are always delighted to hear from our readers and we’ll respond as quickly as we are able.
As always, feel free to contact us with any queries or feedback. We’re always ready to help in any way we can.
Now go and get those koi going!
If you have spent a lot of time and money on your garden pond, you’re in for a treat today.
Ponds are becoming more and more popular. Whether it’s keeping koi carp or a purely ornamental feature, ponds take quite a lot of upkeep…
Today, we’ll look at 5 pond lights reviews. This should help you to think about what type of lights you want.
Getting the best pond lights is really not rocket science. It just takes a bit of time, patience and research…
In a word, atmosphere.
Pond lights don’t fall under the umbrella of a necessary purchase. You can just as easily do without them. Much as you could make do without a reading lamp but most of us have one.
Thing is, why invest so many hours and so much money on getting a first-rate pond together then skimp on accessories?
Get some lights and you can add a wonderful burst of color and ambience to summer evenings by the garden pond.
Whether you want to highlight a particular water feature or draw out the surrounding foliage, pond lights are a magical addition to your garden.
We’ll look now at the different options at your disposal…
First, you need to think about what style of lighting you are looking for. There are 3 main options:
Obviously, water and electricity can be a dangerous mix so you need to get underwater lights right.
The best pond lights come with an IP rating of 67 or 68. This is necessary if you want the lights submerged.
LED lights produce very intense light but use very little power so it’s a real win-win.
If you want to pick out any foliage, flowers or trees around the pond, some LED garden lights are just what you need.
We will not be focusing on this type of light today but there is a wide choice of around pond lights here.
If you want to make your waterfall stand out even more, try some feature lighting.
We’ll show you a great example in our pond lights reviews coming up…
1.6 x 3
First up in our look at the best pond lights is a superb submersible LED from Deckey.
With 36 LEDs, you can give your pond water a beautiful burst of muted blue light.
The cables are around 10 feet with the light and adapter cords combined. Think about this in relation to the size of your pond.
There are 4 sticky suction cups. You can attach your light vertically or horizontally. It fixed on the ground or glass so it’s a highly flexible lighting solution.
Whether you want to brighten up your pond, aquarium or fountain, this submersible spotlight is among the best pond lights you can buy at an extremely affordable price point.
This pack of 3 submersible spotlights from Jebao are great for lighting up the water in your pond or water fountain without breaking the bank.
With the requisite low voltage at 12V, you’ll get 3 lights of 1.6 watts each.
The standard clear LED lens gives off white light. You’ll get blue, green, yellow and red lenses thrown in as well for a bit of variety.
These lights are suitable for use either under water or outside of the pond.
The plastic housing is built to last so these pond lights should give you many years of pleasure without letting you down.
There’s a 12V transformer provided and the cable is a generous 20 feet long. A nifty sensor flicks the lights on at sunset and turns them off at dawn.
For a capable and rugged lighting solution, think seriously about this LED submersible pond light from Jebao.
MUCH offer an exceptional pond light at an incredibly low price meaning you can easily treat yourself to some nice, subdued waterside lighting.
This is a very versatile underwater light that’s equally at home in a pond, aquarium or pool. You can use it as a fountain lamp or as landscape lighting so you really are spoiled for choice.
With a 10-foot wire, you should have more than enough room for maneuver.
There are 36 LED bulbs that rotate through a selection of patterns and display differently colored light. This is a nice injection of variety.
With 12V safe working voltage, you and your koi carp are in safe hands.
For a multi-purpose pond light that will add to your garden’s ambiance, pop this great underwater light from MUCH on your shortlist. It will not disappoint.
As we near the end of our pond lights reviews, we’ll look at an extremely innovative solution from CREATIVE DESIGN.
This nifty submersible light comes with a solar panel. This panel is fully adjustable through 350 degrees. You can take full advantage of all the sun that comes your way and save on your utility bills.
The IP67 rating means this light is perfectly safe to use underwater.
You’ll be able to charge up via solar or USB. This gives you maximum adaptability and minimum cost.
There are 2 main working modes and you will get plenty of running time from the battery. You’ll enjoy 4-6 hours with the lights on high or 8-12 hours if you run them dimmer.
For a cost-effective way to get some subtle, subdued lighting, think seriously about this solar-powered option.
Last on our list of the best pond lights is a great way to pep up the look of your waterfall without needing a bank loan.
Whether you want to brighten up your water garden or pop it among the landscaping, this 1-watt LED accent light kicks out the same output as a halogen lamp 10 times the size.
The build quality is first-rate. The die-cast metal finish will endure for years even in harsh conditions.
The light hooks up easily to other Aquascape quick connect components.
You’ll get about 40,000 hours of use out of these lights which represents incredible value for money.
For a neatly-designed light that will integrate well into any water feature like a waterfall, this Aquascape LED is a worthwhile investment.
We trust you have enjoyed our look at these pond light reviews.
Hopefully, if you are clear about what type you would like, getting the best pond lights just got a whole lot easier.
You can contact us any time if you have any questions at all. We are always happy to get feedback from our readers and to help in any way we can.
Now go and kick back in the garden!
Proper lawn maintenance requires a great deal of effort and time.
Once things are looking nice and green, you then have to keep on top of the mowing. As if that’s not enough, you then need a weed eater to finish off the edges nicely.
So much work!
How about if you live somewhere with rolling slopes and hills in the area?
We’ll look today at some riding lawn mower for hills reviews.
First, though, we’ll walk you through the options available when you need to cut grass on an incline.
When it comes to mowing on a slope, you have 4 main choices:
If you can manage to cope with the physical demands, a walk-behind mower makes great sense. For those who are less able, you can get some wonderful self-propelled models if you have the budget to spare.
Look for a high quality motor and enjoy a safe, therapeutic way to mow your hilly grass without spending a fortune.
Rear-engine riders make for a relaxing and comfy experience.
These scaled-down riding mowers have smaller decks making them ideal for gardens with lots of obstacles. You can maneuver these mowers around in tight spots fuss-free.
These rear-engine riding mowers work brilliantly on hills.
The deck will pivot along with the front axle giving you a superior cut through turns. Less obstruction means you’ll get a better view while the exhaust fumes are safely expelled behind.
Cutting width is determined by the size of the deck. The larger the deck, the more grass you can cut in a single pass. Smaller decks are wise if you have to think about gates and other tight spaces. The more grass you can cut with your mower, the less you’ll need to trim manually. Get the right size deck for your circumstances.
Hydrostatic transmission gives you a nice gentle ride with no hassle of changing gears. These models are correspondingly more expensive. The other option is a disc drive manual transmission which is probably most common.
On the downside, rear-drive riding mowers are slightly sluggish topping out at just 5mph. Also, you won’t be able to drag any heavy attachments like you would with a tractor.
If you have more garden duty in mind than just mowing, a lawn or garden tractor is the logical solution.
For a multi-purpose workhorse, these powerful units with very capable engines – usually 420cc -750cc – hit the spot.
Although they are not the quickest at 6-7mph, if you want to perform lots of pulling and grunt work alongside regular mowing, tractors are a smart bet.
A lawn tractor is best if you are looking to cut your grass and carry out very light yard duties. These are lighter than garden tractors although still substantial vehicles. They have less horsepower and torque along with smaller tires in back.
From advanced lawn care like aerating and spreading through to towing light carts, lawn tractors are very versatile.
For gardens with hills, look for a tractor with locking rear differential. You’ll lose a little speed but gain plenty of traction.
For heavier earthmoving, whether it’s cultivating or tilling, a garden tractor is the most suitable option.
If you need to tow heavier loads or start in with some serious earthmoving, a garden tractor takes some beating.
The minimum size engine for a garden tractor is 24HP. With beefed-up back tires, you’ll get more ground clearance and stability.
With welded steel frames, super-strong axles and potent engines, garden tractors might not be cheap but they certainly represent great overall value.
The final option when it comes to riding mowers is a zero-turn mower (ZTR).
While these are certainly not cheap, they are generally used for commercial projects or for houses with several acres of garden so think of it as an investment.
The innovative steering system means you can turn on a dime with these variants.
There is a whole range of ZTRs from entry-level and mid-grade on through commercial machines for the very heaviest work.
While a ZTR certainly means business, this is absolutely not the best approach if you have a hilly garden to mow. Having an accident with one of these beasts rolling over could result in serious injury or death. ZTRs are awesome pieces of equipment but save them for flatter terrain.
Now you have a solid grasp of the different options at your disposal, it’s time to check out some riding lawn mower for hills reviews.
If you take the time to think carefully about exactly how you will use your mower and what you expect from it, getting the best riding lawn mower for hills is really not rocket science.
Engine Power(HP or cc)
First up in our riding lawn mower for hills reviews is a powerful but compact model from the legendary Troy-Bilt.
The 382ccc engine offers you all the power you need if you are mowing on hills. The Powermore OHV plant is rugged and built to last. You’ll fit 1.3 gallons in the fuel tank. There’s a handy sight window so you can easily see when you need some gas.
While larger cutting decks have their place, the 30-inch Troy-Bilt is much easier to store away and allows you much more mobility than you’d get with a larger mower. The turning circle is impressive at 18 inches. It’s not quite zero-turn but it’s getting there!
Engaging the blades is a breeze. You’ll be able to choose from 5 settings for the cutting height allowing you great freedom when you’re cutting.
The wheels perform best on level terrain. If your garden is rather uneven, think about a different mower. It always pays to think about what your requirements are so you can get the most suitable option for what you have in mind.
Troy-Bilt offer a comprehensive 2-year limited warranty. Riding mowers are not cheap and a sound guarantee gives you the peace of mind you need when making a substantial purchase.
Next up in our lawn mower for hills reviews is an innovative and multi-tasking vehicle from Raven.
You’ll get more than just a lawn mower with this hybrid. It’s an MPV, mower and generator in one devastating package.
The gas-fuelled motor displaces 420cc. As well as powering the mower, it also juices up the on-board generator. This powers up both the blades and the outlets. It also charges up the batteries.
There’s an extremely tight 14-inch turning circle so if you have a smaller garden or need to get in and out through gates or around obstacles, the Raven is tailor-made.
The 46-inch deck means you can cut through wide swathes of grass in next to no time. Usually, larger and bulkier mowers lose out on maneuverability but the Raven gives you the best of both worlds: power in a nimble unit.
Riding the Raven is fun while the front shocks and suspension help to dampen it down for you. You’ll make light work of any hills and you can tow up to 550 pounds so you’re all set for even heavy chores.
If you want an entertaining and adaptable vehicle offering far more than just mowing, take a good hard look at this Raven MPV. It’s a great deal of bang for your buck and it cuts the grass beautifully too!
Another contender for the best riding mower for hills is this automatic from the well-respected Poulan Pro.
The 42-inch deck allows you to make great progress when you’re mowing without losing out on maneuverability. You have 6 cutting heights to choose from so you can get the very best from your mower.
The Briggs and Stratton engine common in riding mowers kicks out almost 16HP and lets you move up hills without a hitch. The air filter is very easy to clean and maintain.
With an oscillating deck, you can get a crisp, even cut whatever the ground is like underfoot.
The driving experience is straightforward. With an automatic hydrostatic transmission, you’ve got no clutch or gears to worry about. Just hop on and hit the lever to move forwards.
If you are not so practical, you can opt in for the expert assembly option. Your Poulan Pro would ordinarily be delivered in pieces. It takes around 3 hours for a skilled professional to get things up and running. Be realistic about your abilities and take this option if you need it.
For a formidable riding lawn mower that won’t let you down on a slope, give some serious thought to the Poulan Pro.
Husqvarna have a hard-won reputation for producing first-class appliances of all natures. Their yard tractor is no exception in this tradition of excellence.
Although this yard tractor has a generous 48-inch cutting deck, it’s still relatively compact so you can zip around in confined areas without too much problem.
With a 24HP Briggs and Stratton engine equipped with cruise control, riding the mower is much more fun than using a hand mower. The hydrostatic automatic transmission takes all the sting out of driving and you can travel forwards or in reverse.
You engage the blades electronically so there’s no messing around.
If you want to tow anything behind this tractor, there are plenty of accessories to enable this. There’s also a useful mulching kit available.
For a reliable and adaptable riding mower for hills, pop the Husqvarna on your shortlist. This tractor delivers admirably and will last for years and years.
Finishing up our hunt for the best riding lawn mower for hills, here’s a neat 42-incher from Yard Machines.
It weighs in at just under 500 pounds and has a generous cutting path but this mower is not too awkward to move around either. It’s a real win-win with the Yard Machines 420cc.
There’s a 7-speed gearshift meaning you can cope with all your cutting needs and maximize performance.
The mower arrives practically assembled so it won’t take much effort to get it running straight out the box.
With a comfy seat, you can work for extended periods without straining yourself.
You’ll get a 2-year limited warranty so you can buy this mower without worrying about any problems down the line.