Safety Trimmer Safety

Published on February 20th, 2015 | by Jacks


String Trimmer Safety

You finished mowing and your lawn has the just-cut fresh look. Except for those dreaded weeds and edges along your sidewalks, gardens and driveway.

You head for your trimmer, ready to tackle those weeds with a vengeance..

Before you start, refresh yourself on some trimmer safety tips to prevent major injury from happening when using your string trimmer.

Before Starting

Check the weather, if it is raining or the grass is wet, consider doing your trimming another day. Operating your string trimmer in wet weather is a bad idea for a few reasons. The first being you could slip, slide and fall on the wet grass causing injury to you or damaging your trimmer. Also, wet grass allows the trimmer to not operate at full capacity which can eventually lead to permanent damage and having to replace your trimmer.

Make sure you clear your working area of any wire, metal objects, fence posts or other objects that could be thrown by the string trimmer. String trimmers can throw objects up to 50 feet. Keep yourself safe by doing a sweep for any objects that could be thrown before starting your job.

What to Wear?

Trimmer Safety Gear
Trimmer Safety Gear

Protective clothing gives you that extra layer of protection against the flying dirt and debris. Long sleeve pant and shirts protect your arms from flying dirt and debris. Safety glasses, goggles and face masks protect your face from any objects that could ricochet and fly into your face. Another good idea is to wear ear protection to tone down the loud noise of the trimmer.

Use the Right Trimmer Line

Trimmers are each made to use certain types and sizes of line. Using a line weight that is not recommended by the operator’s manual can cause stress to the engine allowing it to not operate properly, which can lead to long-term damage. If you don’t have the operator’s manual anymore, take the line off and bring it along when you purchase a new line.

Tips While Operating

If you have ever used a string trimmer before, you know that they can send dirt, debris, sand and grass blades flying in any direction causing a whirlwind around you. Consider these operating safety tips.

  • Use good support when starting the unit, such as the ground. Never start the unit off the ground.
  • Keep bystanders, pets and children at least 50 feet away from your working area and stop the trimmer if you are approached.
  • Never remove shields or protective guards from your string trimmer.
  • Always cut away from yourself, never towards yourself as objects could be flung in your direction.
  • Make sure shaft is secure. A loose shaft can be damaged, bent or ripped off during transportation.

Clean Up & Storage

After you are finished using your string trimmer you must take the proper procedures to keep your string trimmer in healthy condition. Follow these steps to ensure that your string trimmer stays in top condition.

  • Rinse off your string trimmer and use a brush to get the debris and grass clippings off.
  • 2-cycle string trimmers can be stored horizontally or vertically for convenience as long as fuel does not leak.
  • Always make sure the engine is off and the spark plug is disconnected before performing any quick repairs.


Trimming can put the final touches on a great mowing job. However the flying dirt and debris that a string trimmer can produce can turn this simple job into a dangerous one. All you need to do is follow easy safety procedures and your lawn will be looking great in no time.

Jack’s Safety Tips: Before servicing or repairing any power equipment, disconnect the spark plug and battery cables. Remember to wear appropriate safety glasses and gloves to protect against harmful chemicals and debris. View our Disclaimer.

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About the Author

Jack's Small Engines has been providing parts for outdoor power equipment online since 1997. We also run a service center for outdoor power equipment like riding mowers, snow blowers, generators, chainsaws, and just about anything else.

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