The Best Lawn Sweeper Reviews & Top Buys for 2018
A lawn sweeper, sometimes called a leaf sweeper, is a lawn and back yard tool used for the removal of debris, such as grass clippings, fallen leaves, litter, pine needles, and twigs, from lawns or paved areas. A lawn sweeper utilizes a system of rotating brushes to sweep up debris and collect it into a hopper for disposal.
There are several different types of lawn sweepers - tow behind or pull behind models, and push lawn sweepers. A tow behind unit is towed by an ATV or garden tractor and is meant for larger areas. A push sweeper is very similar to a manual wheeled lawn mower but is powered by hand. It uses a forward-pushing action in order to transfer power from wheels to a brush mechanism by way of a gearing system, making it rotate, and grass clippings and other debris are gathered and transferred into a hopper or bag that is mounted on the machine.
Finding the best lawn sweeper for you lawn can be a challenge - hopefully my guide will help you with the buying process.
Summary: Here are the best lawn sweepers in 2018:
Top Rated & Best Selling Lawn Sweepers
25 cu. ft.
20 cu. ft.
Ohio Steel 42SWP22
22 cu. ft.
John Deere STS-42JD
24 cu. ft.
7 cu. ft.
WHAT IS A LAWN SWEEPER USED FOR?
Letting fallen leaves lie and decay on your yard damages grass, impedes growth, causes bare spots to form on your lawn, and contributes to thatch buildup. Raking is an arduous and exhausting task that has to be frequently repeated throughout the Fall season. A lawn sweeper simplifies the process of raking to clear away grass clippings, leaves, debris, and even pine cones. Basically, a lawn sweeper is an alternative to the use of garden vacuums, leaf blowers, and rakes. It's also an alternative to grass baggers or lawn mower baggers which usually have a smaller capacity and are more expensive.
Using a sweeper instead of a rake saves time and energy, and works evenly with durable rotating brushes, so that grass does not get damaged while you clean your lawn. A sweeper can hold approximately two times as much as a bagger can so the contents can be emptied less often. In most cases, the operator can empty the sweeper bag without having to get off the tractor.
HOW TO USE A LAWN SWEEPER
Lawn sweepers work like a vacuum cleaner by using brushes underneath to pick up any lawn debris and transfer it into a hopper. You might use a lawn sweeper to clean up debris and fallen leaves or to clean up the grass clippings after you've mowed it. It's easy to use a lawn sweeper if you use the following directions.
- First, pick up all large debris from the area, including rocks, branches, and pinecones (a lawn sweeper will pick up grass clippings, small twigs, and leaves, but not very large items).
- Second, mow the lawn as usual. A yard sweeper will work best on grass that is freshly mown at the same height. Set your lawn sweeper's brush height equal to the height of the grass with either a handle or a dial.
- Third, start pushing or pulling your lawn sweeper in paths across your lawn. Turn the sweeper around at the path's end and make sure the tires are placed in the finished path's track for good overlap coverage.
Finally, when your hopper is full, empty it onto a tarp or in a selected location.
TYPES OF LAWN SWEEPERS
There are two main types of lawn sweepers - pull behind or tow behind sweepers, and push lawn sweepers. The tow behind lawn sweeper is run by towing it behind a tractor or riding lawn mower. The sweepers are large, don't need any physical effort to run, and pick up much more debris in a shorter time span. These sweepers are usually more expensive.
A push lawn sweeper works by manually pushing it like a lawn mower over the area that you want to sweep. This machine is eco-friendly (since it doesn't use any gasoline), quiet, and usually requires less storage space. It is most suitable for smaller lawns since it runs at a lower speed, it's a smaller size, and it gathers less debris.
A tow behind or pull behind lawn sweeper is usually preferred to a push lawn sweeper since it requires less manual labor and clears lawns faster. They are attached to the back of a riding mower, ATV or lawn tractor and are towed across your property. They are heavier, larger, and more costly than push lawn sweepers, and are best suited for bigger lawns that require regular clean-ups of a large amount of debris.
A push lawn sweeper is not as popular, and not seen as much as tow behind sweepers. They are manually operated and are most often smaller than tow behind sweepers. An operator pushes the sweeper in front of them, exactly like a manual lawn mower. As you walk along and push, the sweeper's wheels spin several brushes located underneath the sweeper, which will collect the debris, and finally dump it into the collection hopper. Once the hopper's full, you simply detach it, empty out all the contents, and then re-attach the hopper to continue to sweep what's left of the lawn.
Push lawn sweepers are great for smaller areas or lawns, or for those people who don't own a riding mower or lawn tractor. They are very effective for clearing lighter debris such as grass clippings and leaves, and unlike tow-behind lawn sweepers, they don't cause any pollution. A push lawn sweeper can be the perfect answer for a person that has a smaller lawn and doesn't mind putting some physical effort into clearing their lawn.
HOW TO DETERMINE THE BEST LAWN SWEEPER TO BUY
You love your trees and wouldn't live in a place without them. But when Autumn comes around and those leaves start falling in droves, it's time to consider purchasing a leaf sweeper or yard sweeper. You'll want to purchase a lawn sweeper that will pick up lawn debris and leaves quickly and with ease so that your yard will once again look beautiful and clean without having to use a rake (or break your back :)).
Which sweeper is best for your needs? First of all, you should make sure that whatever sweeper you buy has a tear resistant hopper, stamped steel or poly housings, and durable brushes. If you own a lawn tractor, ATV, or a zero-turn mower, you should consider purchasing a pull behind lawn sweeper.
Tow behind sweepers come in various widths. If your property is very large, consider a 100" sweeper. A smaller sized property probably only needs a 21" sweeper. Smaller yards might need a 12 cubic foot hopper, and larger lawns might need a 26 cubic foot hopper. Choose a hitch depending on what you're using to tow the sweeper. If you're uncertain of height requirements, opt for a multi-hitch height sweeper.
Choose a push lawn sweeper if you don't mind getting a little exercise, if your lawn is relatively small and flat if you only want to pick up lighter debris (grass clippings and leaves), and if you don't own a tractor, ATV, or riding mower. Push lawn sweepers are less expensive and will save you time vs raking.
HOW TO MAINTAIN YOUR LAWN SWEEPER
You've done your research and found the best lawn sweeper for your yard, now make sure you maintain it properly.
- First of all, make sure your machine is properly assembled. Depending on how frequently you use your sweeper, a thorough check should be performed every three months (based on weekly usage). Examine the sweeper from the center outward, and finish up with cleaning and washing the exterior.
- Second, examine the wheels. Make sure they're inflated correctly and check, clean, and oil the axle joints.
- Third, before each use, you should check the condition of your brushes. Order replacements if they're starting to look a little worn. If they look good but still aren't operating correctly, double check that they are tight and in the right position, and that they're properly oiled.
- Fourth, make sure that you empty your hopper regularly. If you let the contents get too heavy, you are risking ripping and tearing. You might also consider putting some strong tape on the hopper bag's base so that the fabric that might have contact with the ground is reinforced.
- Fifth, make sure that the chute isn't clogged every time you start to use the sweeper. A visual check is sufficient.
- Sixth, if possible, clean after each use.
- Finally, winterize your equipment before you put it away for the winter. Clean it thoroughly, fix anything that needs it, order replacement parts, and oil all moving parts. Cover it well with some plastic tarp and hang it up on the wall, using the hitch.
After careful consideration of many tow behind and push lawn sweepers, our recommendation is the multifaceted Agri-Fab 45-0492 Lawn Sweeper. This sweeper is well made and functions well as advertised. It comes with clear instructions, and assembly is easy. Any questions can be addressed by looking at some helpful YouTube videos. Online reviewers overwhelmingly gave this model the highest rating possible. They mentioned that it cut their work time in half, it picked up a wide variety of debris (including oak leaves, sweet gum leaves, pinecones, and acorns), and the hopper was large and very efficient. It is highly effective in picking up leaves, grass trimmings, and more.
Watch any instructional videos about your machine and read the owner manual thoroughly. Examine your sweeper for loose parts. If at any point you are unsure of what to do, consult the experts at your local garden store.