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What Should I Consider When Buying a Woodchipper?

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  • Written By: Diana Bocco
  • Edited By: Lucy Oppenheimer
  • Last Modified Date: 03 November 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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A woodchipper can be a great way to turn unwanted leaves, twigs, and branches into high-quality organic compost for the garden. A woodchipper, also known as shredder, is available in a variety of sizes and models. Small chippers, around 1 HP of engine horsepower, usually run on gasoline, while larger ones, up to 16HP, tend to be gas-powered. Another important factor in the quality of a woodchipper designed for residential use is the number of blades or flails it has. The more blades, the easier and faster the process becomes.

A woodchipper designed for residential use can usually handle a certain size and amount of material before clogging up. When making a purchase, it´s important to keep this in mind and choose a woodchipper that can handle the amount of work your yard will produce; smaller, cheaper models can handle branches up to 2 1/2 inches (6.35 cm), while more substantial models can easily chip branches of up to 4 inches (10.16 cm).

Woodchippers are available in a variety of combinations, such as sweeper/blower and woodchipper/vacuum, and with a series of accessories, including collection bags, blowback shields, and covers. Larger models normally include wheels, but they may be optional in smaller units.

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You should keep in mind that additional woodchipper features also mean an increase in price, so if that´s a consideration, you should shop around for discounted merchandise and online outlets. A basic woodchipper model with the capacity of handling only small branches will set you back around $600. Larger models start at $1500 and can run up to $4000. This is one of the few cases when higher prices usually do mean better quality, so don´t settle for the cheapest unit. Also, look for solid construction. A woodchipper made of heavy-gauge steel, including steel blades, will provide you with a longer-lasting piece of equipment that requires less maintenance. Bosch AXT 2200 HP Silent Garden Shredder, which sells for about $300, is a clear example of a good woodchipper that delivers what it promises--fast shredding and chipping with very little clogging, all at a low noise level. Self-feeding machines such as this one are also perfect for one-man jobs. All you have to do is feed the wood pieces and the woodchipper will process them.

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