How to Sharpen a Hedge Trimmer?

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Hedge trimmers are gardening tools used to trim, prune or cut plants in the garden and yard.

There are many various types of hedge trimmers and designs to choose from, so purchasers have a lot of options when buying.

The hedge trimmers can be used for a variety of tasks, making them extremely valuable garden equipment that is well worth the investment.

They were designed to maintain hedges and bushes looking their best, but it can be very tempting to try to trim larger branches with them, especially if you’re in a hurry to finish the yard work.

They have a back and forth cutting action, similar to a reciprocating saw. While this makes these pieces of equipment ideal for removing small twigs and pruning bushes, they just lack the requisite force to remove branches.

They are designed primarily to trim back the tips of tiny branches on hedges, but they cannot cut through big branches.

Types of Hedge Trimmer

  • Manual hedge trimmers: It is also known as hedge shears or hedge clippers, resemble giant pruning shears or scissors. They don’t require anything to function and are the most cost-effective and environmentally friendly.
  • Motorized hedge trimmers: It enables work to be completed more quickly and with less effort than manual hedge trimmers. Their mechanism of cutting is similar to that of finger-bar mowers. Powered trimmers are typically constructed with safety features that prevent them from operating unless both of the operator’s hands are on the handles.
  • Gasoline-powered trimmers: Trimmers that run on gasoline are more powerful, but they are heavier and more difficult to start.
  • Electrical trimmers: They are lighter and less powerful (than gasoline counterparts), as well as less polluting/noisy, although most models still require an electrical cord.
  • Tractor-mounted hedge trimmer: These machines consist of a moving arm with a massive hedge trimmer attachment attached to the end. Their mechanism of cutting is similar to that of finger-bar mowers. Such large hedge trimmers are frequently confused with tractor-mounted reach flail mowers due to the use of booms (booms with flail mower attachments).

Applications of Hedge Trimmer

  • Trimming bushes and hedges
  • Shaping bushes and hedges
  • Thinning bushes and hedges
  • Fruit picking
  • Grass cutting

How to Sharpen a Hedge Trimmer?

Step1: Clean the teeth

Plant sap and resin collect on the cutting apparatus of your hedge trimmer while in use. Before you begin sharpening the blades, wipe away the dirt using a soft cloth.

Step2: Sharpen your hedge trimmer blades with a flat-file

  • Sharpening your hedge trimmer by hand requires only a few steps and will ensure long-lasting cutting performance. To begin, a flat-file will be used.
  • Always file towards the cutting edge. The flat file is only meant to be used in one direction, resulting in a razor-sharp blade.
  • Use the exact sharpening angle provided in your tool’s operating instructions under Technical Data while sharpening the hedge trimmer. The file is only effective on the forward stroke; it should be raised off the surface while moving back: avoid “sawing” back and forth on the surface with the file, as this may dull the cutting edge again.
  • The abrasion limit is 5 mm, therefore you should always be careful not to remove too much material during sharpening. If you file off more than this, the material strength will be compromised, rendering your hedge trimmer useless.
  • To ensure that all blades have the same length, in the end, use the same number of file strokes for each cutting edge.

Step3: Remove burrs using a whetstone

This sharpening process will necessitate the use of a whetstone. Smooth any burrs that have formed on the bottom of the blades during filing.

Move the hedge trimmer over to work on the rear of the blades, lightly dampening them as you go. Draw the whetstone along each blade, smoothing the roughened surface as you go with a delicate swiping motion in the direction of the tip.

Step4: Care after Sharpening

We’re almost finished. Now it’s time to take care of your newly sharpened hedge trimmer.

Remove any grinding dust that has accumulated from the preceding stages. Since the filing process will have removed the protection against corrosion that was previously on the blades, the cutting device must then be sprayed with STIHL resin solvent. This will ensure that the machine continues to perform properly and that it will continue to serve you well for a long time.

Read: How to Restring a Black and Decker Electric Trimmer

Benefits of Sharpening Hedge Trimmer

  • Using a sharpened hedge trimmer can make the trimming job much easier. You will do your task much faster, potentially saving you from sunburn during the warmer months.
  • It’s easy to spot gardens or plants that have been trimmed using a well-sharpened hedge trimmer; they’re usually very neat. Aside from that, pruning your shrubs with a sharp blade will help them heal faster.
  • Sharpening your hedge trimmer’s blades regularly will also extend its life. You won’t have to pay extra money on new parts, and your tool will most likely last for many years.


You may not love the extra work, or the thought of being in danger near your blade or grinder may not appeal to you. In any event, you may always hire a professional to sharpen your blade for you.

You can keep operating your hedge trimmer successfully as long as you have the means to keep the edges of your blade’s teeth sharp. To learn how to sharpen a hedge trimmer, follow the instructions outlined above.


Is it feasible to sharpen electric hedge trimmers?

Yes, since the blades of an electric hedge trimmer act in the same way as the blades of a gas-powered trimmer, the procedures indicated above will operate.

Is it necessary to lubricate the hedge trimmers?

Yes, hedge trimmers require oil to reduce friction between the blades and to keep the trimmer’s blades from bending due to extreme heat. Due to hedge trimmers lack an oil reservoir, the oil is sprayed directly onto the trimmer blades, as opposed to chainsaws.

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