No matter the expanse of the area — whether an entrance to a city hall or a park next to an office building — every green space looks better with manicured borders and clean lines. That’s why string trimmers for government and commercial applications are an integral part of any landscape artisan’s power equipment collection.  

In most markets, string trimmers are most often used in government, residential and industrial applications to clear thick grass or brush. “Trimmers are ideal for horizontal cutting challenges presented by grasses and weeds that grow around walls, fences, shrubs, trees, and mailbox posts where lawn mowers can’t reach,” says Steve Forslund, an engineer at Honda Power Equipment. 

In surveying the different trimmer models on the market, it’s important to know that the engine powering a trimmer actually drives most of the differences in technology among models. 

“The ability of an engine to operate in a 360-degree inclinable orientation is very important to the overall ease of the trimmer’s operation,” says Forslund. “In addition, a trimmer incorporating a four-stroke engine is inherently quieter, virtually smokeless, more fuel-efficient and produces considerably less vibration than most two-stroke engines. And, unlike the two-stroke engine, it requires no special gas/oil mixtures, so there's never a chance for improperly mixed fuels.”

Getting the right cut also starts with selecting a trimmer that offers government grounds maintenance crews and commercial landscapers a number of technologically advanced elements that contribute to ease of use, dependability, and most importantly — a precise cut.  

Many new trimmers incorporate an electronic ignition with primer systems for quick, reliable starts. Grounds equipment buyers who are considering a trimmer purchase should look for an advanced anti-vibration system that isolates controls from engine vibration. The trimmer assembly should include multiple bearing-supported hardened steel shafts housed in a sturdy aluminum tube.   

Forslund also is quick to point out that while most trimmers come fully equipped with all the necessary tools for operation, buyers should check to be sure that the model is sold with the proper safety equipment for operation. “The use of a safety harness and eye goggles are key to safe and efficient trimmer operation.” The equipment keeps crews safe, healthy and on the job.

William Walton is senior marketing manager at Alpharetta, Ga.-based Honda Power Equipment. Honda dealers do business with many governments around the U.S.

Go here for the first part of this series, which tells how to choose the right tiller.

This video shows how the Honda hedgetrimmer attachment is designed to attach to Honda's straight shaft brushcutter. This product is equipped with a 55-centimeter-long double-sided blade and is designed for trimming foliage.