Tips for choosing machinery

Helpful information to ensure you buy the correct equipment

Choosing the right machinery for your garden,

Selecting the right machinery for your garden can be a daunting task, there is just so much available, so which is the best? In truth, there are many good machines around, so we are not saying that ours are any better than some others, but we do believe they are at least as good as comparative brands from other retailers. We choose Tanaka for a brushcutter, strimmer, chainsaw or blower, and Stiga Mountfield are our choice for lawnmowers, garden tractors, and ride on lawn mowers.

We know that our brands do exactly what we promise they will do, and do it well, so why look for anything else? We feel it is important not only to buy a product you can trust, but also buy it from a local dealer you can trust, after all, its the total package that makes a good purchase.  Good quality, reliable machines from a good, reliable dealer.

We know our stuff here at Garden Kit and will offer you sound advice. We know it is important not to oversell a product, so we will not stitch you up with more than you need, but we also know the importance of advising you correctly so that you do not buy a product that is simply not up to the task intended. A suitable machine may indeed cost a little more than you had intended to spend, but an inadequate purchase is merely a waste of your money.

We have built a reputation over many years for just this sort of help, hence our strapline:-  Service, Advice and an Excellent Price!

Machinery Knowledge and Industry Secrets

We have been working in the garden industry for many years, and we could not help but pick up a few things along the way. This page is dedicated to that knowledge, knowledge that we have gained from working on repairs to garden machinery, working in our own gardens or speaking with experts in the field (pardon the pun). We encourage you to read through the tips and tricks below, check out our video's on our YouTube channel and please feel free to submit your own useful tips and tricks via our contact page

Please Keep in mind:

  • Not all gardens are the same, what might work for one, will not necessarily work on another, but we can advise on the best choice of machine for your garden.
  • The tips and hints on this page are a guide only, and are our opinions.
  • If you have further questions please get in touch directly
  • You can submit your own tips via the contact page
Servicing your equipment
  • The demand for our services is always high between October and April each year so early booking is advisable to ensure that your machinery gets onto our list so that it is back with you in good time for the first cut of spring.
  • Collection is available for lawnmowers and garden tractors at a small extra charge within the local area. Alternatively you can bring your mower to us at Garden Kit Ltd, Unit 2, The Old Sawmills, Colaton Raleigh, EX10 0HP.
Which mower? Collect or Mulch?

Both mowers have their place on the lawns of East Devon. For those who wish to have the best lawn with the best stripes in the area then the roller rotary with collection may well be the best choice. But for those with an average lawn and who want to spend the minimum  of their precious time cutting grass then Mulching must be seriously considered. A good mulching mower, used correctly, can leave a near perfect finish and only takes half the time of a collector mower

Mulching mower is only as good as the person operating it. You have to work with the system if you want the very best finish and this may mean cutting twice a week in the peak growing season. But the beauty is that each cut takes only half the time of traditional 'cut and collect' and the lawn is constantly being fed by the nutrients from the clippings, so a lusher, greener lawn will result.

Contrary to common belief, mulching does not contribute to thatch, in fact the opposite applies.

All you need to know about mulching
Which mower? Steel or Aluminium deck?

The mower decks of pedestrian mowers can be made of Steel, Aluminium or Polythene. Some mowers from Stiga-Mountfield now have a hybrid deck of steel and aluminium.

Steel is the cheapest material. It has the advantage of being lighter weight and cheaper than either aluminium or polythene, but the main drawback is the tendency of steel to rust. We consider the average lifespan of a steel deck to be around 10 years.

Cast Aluminium decks generally last much longer and are more rigid than steel, but production costs are higher. As the deck itself is more expensive, we often find that these mowers often sport higher quality components than those found on the steel decked machines.

Plastic or Polythene decks are of course, totally resistant to corrosion, but do sometimes show signs of fatigue with age, which can result in unrepairable cracks. We currently only offer plastic decks only on the lightweight Freedom 48 models.

Choosing a Ride on Mower

Choosing the correct Ride On Mower, Lawn Tractor or Rider is more involved than you may think, but it is important to get it right at the outset rather than end up with the wrong machine. It is virtually impossible to advise on-line, but we can offer some thought prevoking questions. If you intend to call us, or visit us to seek our advice, then we will need the answers to these questions.

  • How much grass do you have to cut? Many people know the total area of their plot and use this figure. But invariably the actual area is much less as they forget to subtract the area of the house, outbuidings and paved areas.
  • Do you wish to collect the grass clippings? Many answer yes to this questiion merely because they are unaware of the options offered by mulching mowers.
  • Do you have any width restrictions, such as gateways, paths or shed doors?
  • Is you terrain rough or smooth (lawn or paddock)?  It is important to choose a machine that can cope with the challenges of cutting both terrains.
  • Is the ground sloping? and if so, by how much? now I appreciate that it is difficult to gauge a slope, bnut nevertheless, it is important for us to ensure that the chosen machine is safe to use on your terrain.
  • How frequently do you intend to cut the grass? For instance, do you want to keep it short and looking like a lawn all the time? Or maybe you are content to let the grass for a few weeks and then hit it hard.
  • How much did you have in mind to spend on your mowing machine?

If you have the answers to these questions in mind when we speak it will be much easier to help with your choice of Ride On Mower. We want to see you with exactly the right machine. One that fits you, the garden and your pocket.

Choosing a Brushcutter

I often have strimmers and brushcutters in for service that have been purchased elsewhere, and I am always amazed at how often they are totally unsuitable for the task being performed.

Very often the machines are far too large for the intended usage, resulting in a waste of cash as well as a waste of effort when using them, but of course, it is also possible to buy a totally inadequate machine, especially when buying purely on price.

We give all our customers the benefit of our advice in order to ensure that they spend their money in the most efficient manner and purchase the ideal brushcutter for the task. Over the last 25 years I have sold many thousand Tanaka machines and, with such  a low breakdown rate, I have come to respect these machines above all others. I will happily sell a Tanaka to both domestic users and commercial users alike, safe in the knowledge that I have sold them the ultimate machine for their task. For 2020 we are pleased to announce that we are also main dealers for the prestigeous and ultra reliable Echo brand of hand held machinery, which we know will be just as good, if not better, than Tanaka. Times change, and we must change with them.

And of course, we are now offering  24volt, 48volt and even 80volt Cordless brushcutters, excellent for those who do not like the thought of pull starting a petrol machine.

How about Cordless machinery?

Cordless garden machinery has been around for many years, but had always been heavy, had poor performance and short run times. Batteries have had poor life and needed expensive replacement . I had always kept clear of selling these machines.....until now!

I now believe that Cordless power has come of age, with lighter weight, yet very reliable Lithium Ion batteries which really pack a punch and offer very good run times and long battery life.

For the 2020 season we will be stocking the Stiga 500series  range of small garden machinery. The range is a 'system' which is powerd by either a 2AH, 4AH or even 5AH battery which are totally interchangeable. Once you own a battery and a charger you can select machines to use with them. Choose from a brushcutter, strimmer, chainsaw, blower/vac, hedgecutter, pole hedgecutter, pole saw, as well as a range of push and self propelled mowers up to 52cm wide.

This kit all has a really good tough feel about it, so for those prospective purchasers who want a tough machine without the hastle of a petrol engine this kit really does offer the solution.

More about Cordless


..Gardening Video's on our YouTube Channel please like and follow us

We strive to provide Our Customers with Top Notch Tips to make their Gardening Enjoyable and Rewarding


Watch Now