Do you have a big lawn to take care of? But do you succeed in keeping it green and healthy? I have a huge lawn, and taking care of it is a hassle for me sometimes. Especially when it was time to aerate my lawn, I needed help to get away with it.
Using fertilizer is an easy task; changing the water habits of your lawn might work well as well; removing weeds from your lawn sounds easy too. But the real trouble is aerating your lawn.
One of the main reasons behind unhealthy lawns is poor soil and lack of aeration. So, I am here with this article for those who know nothing about aeration and aerator. I have reviewed some of the best aerators for the lawn below. Read the article and help yourself in keeping your lawn healthy.
Table of Contents
1. Yard Butler ID-6C Manual Lawn Coring Aerator
“I have a large yard, but only a small section of grass. It is in really bad shape. After doing a lot of research, I decided this core aerator is the best thing to start with. Boy, does it work! It does take some physical labor, and doing this a day or two after rain helps.”
Lisa Anne Whistler-Smith
If your lawn is about to die and you need an immediate solution, then there is no better option than the Yard Butler ID-6C Manual Lawn Core Aerator. This one is the finest manual lawn aerator that you can have.
The best thing about this aerator was that it helped me use a minimum amount of water and other nutrients to revive my lawn to the best condition. Using this aerator, I removed about 3-1/2 inches of soil to reduce the compactness of the soil.
I loved how this aerator was made of pure steel. So, one thing I am sure of here is that this aerator will undoubtedly last me a long time. I am happy that this aerator promoted rapid root growth and strengthened drought and heat stress tolerance. Also, this 37-inch aerator was easy to use, and I didn’t have to put a lot of force into setting it up into the soil.
Lastly, the aerator also came up with a lifetime guarantee loud enough to speak about its durability.I loved everything here except for one thing: the limited amount of plugs. Besides that, the aerator worked perfectly, and I was happy with it. If you want another option at a pocket-friendly price, consider Agri-Fab 45-0365 Push Spike Aerator.
2. Agri-Fab 45-0365 Push Spike Aerator
For those looking for the best budget manual lawn aerator, I have a deal for you. The Agri-Fab Push Spike Aerator is one of the finest spike aerators t have ever seen.
It was straightforward to use, and I am sure it will last a lifetime with you. The best part about this aerator was that it didn’t disrupt the grass growth in my yard. And this made me think, What else do I want from a lawn aerator?
The thing I loved the most about this aerator was its 7-inch-long spikes. So, no matter how compact my garden’s soil was, this aerator was enough to resolve all the issues.
With its 2-1/2-inch aeration, this aerator exposed the soil to water, oxygen, and other essential nutrients. Also, the steel weight tray helped to hold the concrete blocks, create pressure, and allowed me to push spikes into the ground with minimum effort applied. With its five sharp spike plates, the aerator aerates my huge lawn in the minimum time possible.
Now coming to the thing that I didn’t like about this aerator. Because this aerator didn’t come with wheels, I had difficulty moving it along my huge lawn. I am not a beginner-level gardener; I still had a lot of issues while moving this one. Because of this, I won’t suggest beginners get their hold on this aerator.
If you are a beginner and have just started gardening, I suggest Agri-Fab 45-0365 Push Spike Aerator.
3. Brinly PA-40BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator
Aerating your lawn can be a huge problem if you have a large garden like mine. And trust me, mowing the aerator all around the yard now and then had made me tired, and I wanted something more convenient. Just in the meantime, I came across this tow aerator.
If you ever ask me about the best plug aerators, I will name BrinlyPA-40BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator. This was one of the best manual lawn aerators you could ever have. There was less grass disruption, easy aeration, and quick results with this aerator.
The steel lawn aerator left me in awe. It came up with 24 heat-treated steel plugging spoons that could reach a 3-inch depth with ease. The aerator helped me plug soil easily and let water and oxygen penetrate in no time. I loved the narrow and sharp ends of this aerator. It allowed me to run the aerator like a lawnmower.
It also had a weight tray that could hold 150 pounds. Lastly, I tested this aerator by attaching it to a mini tractor to check whether it could withstand a huge lawn. Doing so wasn’t a hassle because this aerator came with a universal single-pin hitch. It made the connection part simpler and more accessible.
Everything worked perfectly here except that the wheels would often get stuck in the mud. But even then, it was not a major issue, and I was able to get away with it, and I don’t think anyone would have a serious problem with this.
However, if you still need a tow aerator with something more firm and durable that will not get stuck in the mud, then check the Agri-Fab 45-0544 40-Inch Spike Aerator I have tested and tried in the next section.
4. Agri-Fab 45-0544 40-Inch Spike Aerator
Agri-Fab store is what offers some of the best lawn aerators throughout the world. And just when I tried this one, I had to include it because of its exceptional durability and performance. The Agri-Fab 45-0544 40-Inch Spike Aerator is one of the best aerators you could invest in.
It was effortless to aerate my huge lawn. I fell for this one mainly due to the ease of aerating, quick results, and incredible durability.
The amazing thing was that the aerator came up with 10 galvanized steel spikes that didn’t take much time to enter the soil in my yard. Because I am always looking for convenience, I was happy to find that I can use the weight tray to use this aerator easily. This unique aerator’s weight tray could hold up to 100 lbs easily.
This aerator offers easy storage, maintenance, assembly, and impressive aeration. It came up with a three years limited warranty. This is something good enough to compel you to get this amazing aerator.
However, the one thing that bothered me here was those short spikes on this aerator. Because of the short length, these spikes could not go deep enough.
5. PLANTNOMICS Lawn Aerator Shoes with Hook-and-Loop Straps
“These aerator shoes meet all my expectations. They punch small holes in the dirt. That’s about it. They will not replace a mechanical aerator if your soil is heavy – such as clay. Mine is sandy and the spikes make nice small holes to allow nutrients and water to get in more easily. I have noticed that where I have thin grass and spend additional time in those areas, the grass is spreading more quickly into the areas. Just what I wanted.”
For my beginner-friendly readers, I have got a great pick! Why don’t you bet on lawn aerating shoes if you want to aerate your lawn and try something new? They were easy to use, did not cost much, and lasted longer than expected. All I did was wear them and generally walk on my lawn.
The best thing about this shoe lawn aerator was that it could reach anywhere without issues. The nickel-coated steel spikes and polypropylene bases helped me aerate the lawn quickly. What I loved the most about these shoe aerators was that I didn’t have to put any concrete block or another thing as weight. My body weight was enough to help me aerate the lawn quickly.
At first, I was worried I might fall while wearing these shoes. Fortunately, the shoes came with three safety straps that helped me stay firm and aerate my lawn without falling. Lastly, with these aerators, I got 26 other spikes that aerated my lawn perfectly without any hassle.
I am not going to lie, but there can be some size issues with these aerating shoes. However, the sizing guide will help you out. Make sure you choose the correct size according to your shoe fit.
6. AMES 2917400 4-Spike Lawn Aerator with Stirrup Handle
“Make sure the lawn has been watered before using. It will wear you out if you have to do a lot of the yard. The instruction says to watch out for electricity because it is all metal. No rubber grips. Unless you can put something on the handle. It works as expected for a low-price tool.”
Let me introduce you to the AMES 2917400 4-Spike Lawn Aerator with Stirrup Handle. Even though it would cost you too much, the results and the performance are exceptional. I found this aerator one of the easiest lawn aerators that helped me aerate my lawn with no issues.
The aerator came up with four sharp spikes to enter any type of soil. The sharp and thick spikes allowed me to reach the core of the lawn and allowed easy access to water, oxygen, and other nutrients to the roots.
Also, it must not go without saying that this lawn aerator was quite sturdy and came up with one piece construction. This ensured that the aerator stayed intact even if used roughly. Lastly, it depends entirely upon you at what depth you will aerate your lawn, but as I tried almost every depth measurement, this is one of the best aerators you can get for your lawn.
However, the aerator is a bit tough to use, but when you apply the correct pressure, you can get away with it.
7. Strongway Drum Plug Aerator
How good will it be if 56 different 6-inch long plugs help you aerate your lawn? Well, it sounds complex, but with Strongway Drum Plug Aerator, you can do it with minimum effort. If you own a lawn and have issues while aerating it, I suggest you bet on this lawn aerator.
The aerator was made while taking inspiration from road rollers. So, I placed the aerator in my garden, pushed it a bit against the soil, and started rolling it. The best thing about the aerator is that its rolling cylinder can be filled with water, so you will not have to put a lot of pressure while aerating. I tried filling it with water and then rolling it around, and the results were amazing. It also came up with removable plugs coated with rust-resistant powder. Over time, this contributed to its durability.
There was no issue with this one except that you have to put substantial force, in the beginning to get this one moving. However, once it starts rolling, moving it around is much easier.
How Did I Test the Products?
For testing all the products here, I relied on my lawn because it is huge and has a lot of various kinds of soil. In some places, it is wet soil, while in others, it is challenging and rock-solid soil. However, aerating this soil was an important factor, so I ensured that the operator I was getting could get through all the soil types I had.
First of all, I tested how comfortable and convenient each aerator was. I wanted to avoid ending up with something huge and heavy and needing help moving. Because of this, I wanted something light in weight, with wheels that can get attached to a towing source.
After the ease of use, I checked how deep the rods could penetrate the soil. I wanted something deep for my lawn for aeration, so I looked for those aerators whose spikes were lengthy. However, you can also get those short spiked aerators too. It depends on your preference, the soil you have, and many other factors.
Lastly, I wanted to check durability, so I checked every product in various weather conditions. I even had some products stay in the rain overnight to see whether the corrosion or erosion impacted them.
Types of Aerators
Before getting to aerate your lawn you need to understand the type of aerator you need. For various lawn types and conditions, you need different aerators. Some of the most common are mentioned below.
1. Spike Lawn Aerator
Spike aerator is one of the best manual lawn aerators that you can have for your lawn. It makes small holes in the soil to make it loose to accommodate space for water, oxygen, and fertilizers. The best thing about spike aerators is that they do not remove soil from your lawn.
2. Hand Aerator
If you have a small lawn to aerate, a hand aerator will be the best option. It comes with two to three plugs attached to a rod that you have to push into the lawn with the help of your hand and feet. This is the best aerator to reach small spaces.
3. Core Aerator
A core aerator works on the same principle as a spike aerator. However, in place of spikes, in a core aerator, we use small tines that make little holes in your lawn to allow oxygen and water to reach the roots of your plants and grass. Along with it, a core aerator helps to reduce the compactness of the soil.
4. Fork Aerator
Like its name, a fork aerator is a yard aerator that looks like a fork having hollow spikes. A fork aerator helps you dig small holes into your lawn by removing some parts of the soil. It softens the compactness of your lawn’s soil and helps nutrients, water and oxygen reach the core.
Types of Aeration
Aeration is fun, but knowing what type of aeration your lawn needs is a hard nut to crack. Various lawn types need different types of aerations. So, follow the details below to know everything about aeration and lawn type.
1. Liquid Aeration
In liquid aeration, you will have to use a ready-made liquid solution for your lawn. It is one of those ways whose results are late but long-lasting. However, if you need immediate results, then perform either core or spike aerator for the lawn before liquid aeration.
2. Core Aeration
If you have a dry and yellow lawn, core aeration can be your last resort. It will dig small holes into your lawn to create space for water and other essential nutrients to enter the core of the soil. With core aeration, you will be able to restore your lawn to the best condition with negligible effort.
3. Spike Aeration
In spike lawn aeration, a lawn aerator with many spikes is used to make holes in your lawn. With spike aeration, you dig holes in a way that no mud/soil is removed, and your lawn’s grass remains unaffected. It reduces soil compactness and helps water and oxygen reach the roots easily.
Factors to consider: A compact buyer’s guide
If you need an aerator, then it is sure that you need the best one. But, to get the best out of the rest you need a proper buying guide to follow. Read the guide below and help yourself get the best lawn aerator for your lawn.
Whenever you are going to get a yard aerator, it is a must to check the material of the product. Aeration is a rough and time taking process, and if the material of the lawn aerator is lousy, you won’t be able to perform aeration perfectly.
So, while getting an aerator for the lawn, keep material your first priority. Some aerators are made up of aluminum, and some use iron and nickel. However, an aerator made up of hard iron or stainless steel will work well.
While aerating, the grip is one of the most important things. It is what decides whether you will be able to do aeration finely or not. So, when you are going to get an aerator for the lawn, I suggest you put a special bet on its grip. The grip of a lawn/yard aerator must be sturdy.
Maximum and Minimum Depth Covered by the Aerator
When aerating, it will be good if your aerator can cover a good depth. Most lawn aerators are good at aerating, but the depth covered by their spike or tines is minimal, which might affect the aeration process. The minimum depth for any kind of aeration must not be less than 3 inches and if you want to hit the limit then 6 inches is enough. I always suggest getting a lawn aerator with a lone spike/tines.
An aerator is one of those things that we hardly use three to four times a year. And, there are even cases when we do not even use them for a whole year. So, it is for sure that a local aerator will catch rust with time.
This is something that you will not want to face. Hence, it is suggested to check the durability of the aerator before getting it. For this getting a rust-proof or stainless steel aerator will be the best option.
What is the best time to aerate your lawn?
It is the perfect time to aerate your lawn when the grass is at its peak growing season. It is usually the late spring and early summer seasons. During this time, due to warm temperatures and light rainfall, grass hits its peak growth.
Most of us aerate our lawns when the grass is dry, and this is why our lawn grass grows late. So, aerate when it is the peak growing season, and your grass will recover soon.
Is liquid or core aeration better?
If you need immediate effects, there is no better option than core aeration. However, if you are looking for long-lasting effects, liquid aeration is your best escape. Liquid Aeration offers late results, but they last long.
Which is better: core or spike aerator?
Both are best and can be used in different conditions. A core aerator is used when you need to reach a depth of soil, and the soil is compact enough that no water reaches the roots. On the other hand, when you have mildly compacted soil, a spike aerator will work best.
What type of lawn aeration is best?
It depends on the type of soil and the results you demand. If you need quick results, spike aeration will help. If you need quick and long-lasting effects, there is nothing better than core aeration. And, if you need late and long-lasting impacts, liquid aeration is something to bet on.
How do lawn aerators work?
Lawn aerators work on the same principle as a lawnmower. An aerator digs a small hole in your lawn to help oxygen, water, and other needful nutrients reach the core of your lawn roots.
How deep should I aerate?
If you aerate your lawn from time to time and the lawn is not so bad, then anything between 1 to 3 inches will be best. However, if your lawn has compact soil and it’s about to dry, then I suggest you aerate as deep as 6 inches at least. This will help you restore your lawn to the best.
This article must have been a treasure if you want to know about the best lawn aerators for healthy and lush lawns. The article above has introduced you to some of the best types of lawn aerators. Hopefully, you have decided which aerator to go for; if not, let me share some of my favorite picks with you:
- Best Pick: Yard Butler ID-6C Manual Lawn Coring Aerator
- Best Budget Pick: Agri-Fab 45-0365 Push Spike Aerator
- Beginner-Friendly Pick: PLANTNOMICS Lawn Aerator Shoes with Hook-and-Loop Straps.
Along with it, I ensured to guide you about some of the best types of aerators and aeration. If you are wondering about DIY aeration, then here’s how to aerate a lawn by hand effectively.
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