10 Best Garden Tillers in 2020

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Earthwise TC70020 20-Volt Tiller

Earthwise TC70016 Corded Electric Tiller

Mantis 7940 4-Cycle Tiller Cultivator

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Are you an avid gardener? Are you ready to prepare your soil for springtime? Then it is time to start tilling.

As spring arrives, your grass starts to grow, making your yard a beautiful green landscape. However, if you have issues with your lawn, it could be because of the problems the soil may have underneath the grass. A lawn needs air and water to grow, and when your soil becomes compact, it leads to thatching and your grass starts to die. Gardners need to keep their lawn aerated during spring and summer in order for their lawn to be healthy.

A tiller is the best tool for aerating your lawn. A freshly tilled lawn can be so satisfying, but only if you are tilling with the right garden tiller, using the wrong garden tiller can make the process of tilling stressful and frustrating. It doesn’t have to be like that. Tilling can be a straightforward and enjoyable task if you have the best garden tiller that suits your needs. They ensure your grass gets the air, water and nutrients it needs to flourish throughout the growing season. A tiller is not a common gardening tool, so a lot of people have never seen this machine in use, but with this guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about the selecting, buying and operation of these machines.

There are different garden tillers available, and to find the right one, you need to know its features and if it is best suited for your garden.

GARDEN TILLER BUYER’S GUIDE

TYPES OF TILLERS

There are three types of tillers available; the first one is a manual tool that resembles a garden spade or fork. It is about the same size and weight as a hammer and requires you to manually till the soil.

The second type is an electric machine. These tillers are battery-powered or gas-powered, and they are much stronger at aerating and cultivating than the manual tiller if you own a large lawn where a manual tool won’t be sufficient enough then these machines would probably be best for you.

ELECTRIC TILLER: the electric tiller is excellent for small gardens. You don’t have to worry about running out of gas with an electric tiller, but you need to work near a power outlet or have a long extension cord. Electric tillers are not as powerful as gas-powered tillers, but this is not a problem if you have a small garden.

GAS TILLERS: A gas tiller is extremely strong. They are great for tilling large areas or if you are breaking new ground. Gas tillers are more powerful than electric tillers, and they can handle rocks, weed and compacted soil with so much ease. However, they have a downside; they are harder to push and manoeuvre. Your entire body will definitely get a workout, so be prepared to sweat. Gas tillers also come with more maintenance task.

The third type of tiller is the ride behind tiller that you can attach to the back of a tractor or seated lawn mower. They are great for a large expanse of land or farms during the planting season.

TINE

There are the front tine tillers and the rear tine tillers. It is crucial to decide on which one will best serve your purpose. Front tine tillers are usually gas-powered and are useful when it comes to tilling large areas with hard soil. A front tine tiller does not cut as deeply as a rear tine tiller; they are easy to push, which makes them suitable for gardens that do not need regular tillage.

Rear tine tillers cut more deeply into the soil, they are powerful but also the biggest and heaviest, which makes them suitable for tilling hard soil or heavy clay soil. They are self-propelled, so all you have to do os walk behind or beside them and steer the machine as it does its job. Its features make it ideal for tilling large plots of land.

FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN PURCHASING A GOOD GARDEN TILLER

Garden tillers come with different features. Choosing the right features for your tiller depends on your lawn size. Here are some of the features you should look out for when purchasing a garden tiller.

POWER SOURCE

Gas-powered tillers offer gardeners with power, but they are noisy and too much for an average garden or lawn. They require oil and fuel to work and also have more emissions. If you have a larger lawn and want to purchase a gas-powered tiller, then you need to decide between a 2-stroke or 4-stroke engine. They are usually expensive.

Electric tillers are either corded or cordless, which makes them convenient. The corded tillers are lightweight and user-friendly, but the cord might get in your way while you are tilling. The battery-powered cordless tillers have a higher degree of user-friendly operation, but they need recharging, so you only have limited work time.

ADJUSTABLE CUTTING DEPTH AND WIDTH

Garden tillers come with models that offer both adjustable and fixed cutting depths. It is best if you go for an adjustable model. An adjustable model lets you choose the cutting depth that best suits your terrain. If you are tilling a large area, then a wide garden tiller will help you do the work faster, but a tiller with a narrow width will be suitable to use in small spaces such as between garden rows and in raised garden beds.

DUAL ROTATING TINES

Some models of tillers offer dual rotating tine; they are suitable for large gardens and lawns, the dual tines give the machine extra cutting power which will help you till faster. Not all models offer this feature, so ensure you check the product description before you purchase one.

COUNTER ROTATING TINES

There are models of tillers that come with counter-rotating tines. The counter-rotating tine helps the machine to dig deeper and gives you a powerful cutting depth.

SIZE OF YOUR LAWN

The size of your lawn or garden is the most crucial factor to consider when selecting a tiller. A small garden or flower bed needs a cultivator or a front line tiller, or you might even find a manual tiller that gives you the best value. But if you own a large estate or farm, then a rear-tine tiller would be best for you.

TYPE OF SOIL

The type of soil in your garden is also an important consideration. If you have a regular soil in your garden and lawn, then a basic front-tine tiller is best for you. But if you have rocky or sandy soil, then you require the use of a manual or rear tine tiller before planting.

BUDGET

Your budget is also an important factor. A tiller is not an expensive machine, but they vary in price, from $100 to $3000. It is best to find a tiller that is within your price range and does not sacrifice efficiency for economics.

WARRANTY

The best garden tillers usually provide good value for money as long as they last many years. But everything eventually breaks down; it is best to choose a brand that has a good warranty, this is so that if there is any breakdown that isn’t your fault, then your warranty covers it. It is common to find a 2 to 3-year warranty but some manufacturers offer five years.

When purchasing a tiller, it is best to choose one that matches your gardening needs. It would be pointless to buy a ride behind tiller when you have a small garden.

Let’s take a look at the list.

The Best 10 Garden Tillers Are Reviewed Below

Different manufacturers produce different models of garden tillers. We have done our research and have come up with this list of the best garden tillers and their detailed comparison. This guide will help you choose the best garden tiller for your needs.

1

Earthwise TC70020 20-Volt Tiller

The Earthwise TC70020 tiller is a powerful tool that offers the gardener a machine that works efficiently and effortlessly. It is powered by its 20-volt lithium-ion battery packs that provide you with a work time of 20 to 30 minutes on a full charge. It is suitable for small lawns and yards, but it is advisable to get a second battery pack if you intend on using it on a larger garden. The machine comes with a fast-charging battery; it can charge the battery pack in 90 minutes. It features a four tine cutting construction with strong stainless steel. It also features an adjustable cutting depth of up to 6 inches and a cutting width of 7.5 inches. You can aerate a small garden in one full charge.

Its ergonomic grip makes it easy to manoeuvre around the garden, and its lightweight nature will allow even seniors to operate this machine without any form of operator fatigue efficiently.

Key Features:

  • 20-volt lithium-ion battery pack
  • 20 to 30 minutes of work time
  • Fast charge of 90 minutes
  • 6 inches adjustable cutting depth
  • 7.5 cutting width
  • Electric powered
  • 4 durable steel tines
  • Cordless

Specification:

  • Brand: Earthwise
  • Model: Earthwise TC70020
  • Weight: 9 pounds
  • Dimensions: 52 * 9 * 14 inches
  • Color: Green and Black
Pros
  • It is battery powered, so you do not have to worry about running out of gas
  • It includes the battery and charger in its package
  • It is user-friendly
  • It is suitable for beginners
  • Its ergonomics makes it comfortable to use
  • It is durable and lightweight
Cons
  • It is not suitable for rocky soil
  • It is not ideal for heavy-duty use

2

Earthwise TC70016 Corded Electric Tiller

The Earthwise TC70016 Corded Electric Tiller is a combination of power and lightweight design. It comes with a 13.5 amp electric motor and adjustable six tines with a maximum tilling depth of 8 inches. Its tilling width can be adjusted between 11 inches to 16 inches. Electric tillers usually find it hard to deal with hard-packed soil, but this tiller can effectively work on tough soils. It features 6 inches wheels for transport, and they can be flipped up to set the tilling depth. It has a cord retention hook that helps you keep the cord out of your way while you are working. Its major disadvantage is the fact that you have to use an extension cord to power it, and this limits your movements.

It requires a steady grip because it may jump a bit on hard ground, but thanks to its ergonomics, it is quite comfortable to use.

Key Features:

  • Electric powered
  • 13.5 amp motor
  • Tilling depth of 8 inches
  • Tilling width of 16 inches
  • 2-year warranty
  • 6 adjustable tines
  • 16-inch tine length
  • Push-button start
  • Flip down transport wheel
  • Cord retention hook

Specification:

  • Brand: Earthwise
  • Model: Earthwise TC70016 Corded Electric Tiller
  • Weight: 29 pounds
  • Dimensions: 17 * 20.5 * 14.6 inches
  • Color: Black
Pros
  • It has sufficient power to till compact soil
  • It is comfortable to operate
  • It is affordable
  • It is lightweight
  • It is electric-powered, so no need to bother about fuel and oil
  • it doesn’t produce fumes
Cons
  • It is corded, and this can restrict your movement
  • It jumps a bit when it is on hard ground

3

Mantis 7940 4-Cycle Tiller Cultivator

The Mantis 7940 tiller is one of the best gas tillers available on the market. It features adjustable blades for tilling or cultivating. It is suitable for extensive gardens that have a lot of ground to cover. It features a 25cc 4- cycle Honda engine with a rotating force of 240 RPM that powers its steel tines, which have a tilling depth of 10 inches. This machine also doubles as a cultivator.

It features a finger controlled throttle that adjusts the power, and its 9 inches tilling width allows you to use this machine in tight spaces such as between rows of plants and in raised beds. This machine is made to be durable and withstand heavy-duty use. It also has ergonomic handlebars that are foldable, and this allows you to store it easily.

Key Features:

  • Gas-powered
  • 25cc 4-cycle Honda engine
  • 10 inches tilling depth
  • 9 inches tilling width
  • Finger controlled throttle
  • Foldable
  • Reversible tines

Specification:

  • Brand: SCHILLER GROUNDS CARE INC
  • Model: Mantis 7940
  • Weight: 24 pounds
  • Dimensions: 29.25 * 13.5 * 9.5 inches
  • Color: Red and White
Pros
  • It does not need any mixing of oil and gas
  • It is lightweight and easy to manoeuvre
  • It has foldable handles for easy storage
  • Its motor is fairly quiet
  • It is user friendly
  • It is suitable for large lawns and other heavy-duty use
  • It is comfortable to use
  • It has a 5-year warranty
Cons
  • It is noisy and not suitable for areas that respect quiet zones
  • It jumps a bit on hard soil
  • When it is reversed, it only cultivates the top 2 to 3 inches

4

Sun Joe TJ603E 16″ 13.5 Amp Electric Tiller

The Sun Joe brand is a known name when it comes to snowblowers and their range of tillers. It is suitable for homeowners with a large garden or lawn. It has a 16-inch cutting width and an 8-inch cutting depth for six stainless steel tines. A 13.5 amp motor powers it. It also has adjustable height wheels that improve manoeuvrability on any terrain.

It also features a foldable handle that allows you to transport and store the machine quickly and a quick start as well as an easily accessible safety switch. The only disadvantage is that it is corded, and this will reduce your movement. This machine provides you with three height adjustments and a cutting power suitable for any residential use.

Key Features:

  • 13.5 amp electric motor
  • Push-button start
  • 16-inch tilling width
  • 8-inch tilling depth
  • 6 steel angled tines
  • Height adjustable rear wheels
  • 2-year warranty

Specification:

  • Brand: Sun Joe
  • Model: Sun Joe TJ603E
  • Weight: 27.1 pounds
  • Dimensions: 55 * 43 * 43 inches
  • Color: Green and Black
Pros
  • It doubles as a cultivator
  • It is user-friendly
  • It features collapsible handles for easy storage
  • You don’t have to deal with oil or gas
  • It is lightweight and comfortable to use
  • It is affordable
  • Its variable height rear wheels make it easy to transport
Cons
  • It is not ideal for hard and rocky soil
  • It is corded which may restrict you manoeuvrability
  • Some users have complained about its plastic frame being too flexible
  • It may not cut as deep as the Earthwise
  • It requires arm strength and effort to hold it down for a deep cut

5

Snapper XD 82V MAX Cordless Electric Cultivator

The Snapper XD is the easiest tiller to use. That is because it doesn’t require oil and fuel to operate it; neither does it have an electric cord. It is powered by a 2 Ah Briggs & Stratton 82V lithium-ion battery; it is also compatible with 4 or 5 Ah batteries for extra working time. With a full charge, you will get 30 minutes of working time. Its compact size makes it portable and easy to manoeuvre. It has an 800-watt brushless motor and a sealed metal gear drive transmission that is reliable and durable.

It features an adjustable tilling width of 5 inches to 10 inches which are sufficient for almost every garden job. It also features a push start button, 8 inches wheel and comfortable handlebars.

Key Features:

  • Battery-powered
  • 800-watt motor
  • 5 inches tilling depth
  • 10 inches tilling width
  • Push start button
  • 5-year limited warranty

Specification:

  • Brand: Snapper
  • Model: Snapper XD
  • Weight: 12.3 pounds
  • Dimensions: 50 * 11.5 * 36 inches
  • Color: Black and Red
Pros
  • Its compact design makes it easy to manoeuvre between rows and raised beds
  • It is cordless, so you don’t have to worry about getting tangled up
  • It quiet which makes it suitable for residential use
  • It is light in weight
Cons
  • It is not suitable for working on hard soil
  • The battery and charger are sold separately

6

Sun Joe TJ600E Joe 14-Inch

The Sun Joe TJ600E Joe 14-Inch model features a dual tilling and cultivating function. It is suitable for medium to small gardens or yards. It has a 6.5 amp electric motor that powers its stainless steel tines with a cutting depth of 7 inches and a cutting width of up to 14 inches. This model is also corded and has the disadvantage of using an extension cord. It is lightweight, and even seniors will find it easy to operate.

Key Features:

  • Dual tilling and cultivating function
  • 6.5 amp electric motor
  • 4 stainless steel tines
  • Cutting depth of 7 inches
  • 14 inches cutting width
  • Corded

Specification:

  • Brand: Sun Joe
  • Model: Sun Joe TJ600E Joe
  • Weight: 18.7 pounds
  • Dimensions: 30 * 15.5 * 10.5 inches
  • Color: Green
Pros
  • It is durable
  • It is suitable for small lawns and yards
  • It is portable and light in weight
  • It is user-friendly
  • It is electric-powered
  • Its tines are made out os stainless steel which makes them strong and durable
Cons
  • Some users have complained about it being a bit loud
  • It requires you to use an extension cord, and this can limit your manoeuvrability

7

Earthquake 20015 Versa FTT

The Earthquake 20015 Versa is a high performing and powerful machine. It is fuel-powered with a 4-cycle 99cc viper engine. It is suitable for large plots of land and also for breaking new ground, but it still doesn’t compare to the power of a rear tine tiller.

Its tines operate in a forward motion and have a digging depth of 11 inches; you can adjust the level and maintain consistency with the drag stake it has at its back. Its tilling width can be adjusted between 11 inches, 16 inches and 21 inches just by removing the outer tines. This allows you to increase the width for tilling large gardens and reduce the width to enable you till in narrow spaces. It also features throttle control, bicycle-style handlebars and height adjustability. Its gear transmission system is made from cast aluminium which makes it durable.

Key Features:

  • Gas-powered
  • 99cc engine
  • 11 inches tilling depth
  • 21 inches tilling width
  • 5-year warranty
  • Gear transmission system
  • Height adjustability
  • Drag stake

Specification:

  • Brand: Earthquake 20015 Versa FTT
  • Model: Earthquake 20015 Versa FTT
  • Weight: 85 pounds
  • Dimensions: 51.2 * 35.5 * 24 inches
  • Color: Red and Black
Pros
  • It is comfortable to use
  • It is durable
  • It is self-propelled
  • It features adjustable width
  • It has sufficient power to till tough grounds
  • It has a deep tilling depth
  • Its price is worth its features
Cons
  • It sometimes jumps when it’s cutting through large roots

8

Black & Decker LGC120 20-Volt

Black & Decker is one of the world’s leading DIT tool brand. They produce some of the best tools available on the market with amazing features and prices. Black & Decker LGC120 20-Volt tiller is another fantastic power tool. With this tool, you get a dual function of tilling and cultivating.

This tiller features a full transmission and dual steel cutting tines. It is battery powered and receives its power from the MAX lithium-ion 20-volt battery pack which gives you a run time of 20 minutes, so if you have a large garden or lawn, then you need to get an additional battery pack. The tiller comes with the battery and charger included in the package.

It features oscillating counter tines that give you a deep cut and also reduced operator fatigue.

Key Features:

  • Powerful transmission
  • Dual tines
  • Battery-powered
  • 20-volt MAX lithium-ion battery
  • Counter oscillating tines
  • 2-year warranty
  • 20 minutes run time

Specification:

  • Brand: Black & Decker
  • Model: Black & Decker LGC120 20-Volt
  • Weight: 11.73 pounds
  • Dimensions: 8.38 * 7.75 * 41.5 inches
  • Color: Orange and Black
Pros
  • It is cordless
  • It is affordable
  • It features a dual function tiller and cultivator
  • It can cover up to 325 square feet on one battery cycle
  • It is durable
Cons
  • It is not suitable for rocky soil
  • It has a low cutting depth
  • Its battery makes the tool heavy

9

Husqvarna TF224, 208cc Front-Tine Tiller

Husqvarna is a brand known for producing excellent powerful outdoor power tools. This tiller is a premium product, and if you don’t mind paying a bit extra, then this high-quality tool is for you. It comes with a 208cc engine and basic rotating tines that have a tilling depth of 6.5 inches and a drag bar that allows you to adjust the depth to 6 different levels. It also has a tilling width of 24 inches which makes it suitable for tilling large areas quickly.

This tiller also features forward and reverse gears that are easily changed using a lever on the handle; this makes it easier to manoeuvre. This machine is EPA certified and CARB compliant.

Key Features:

  • Gas-powered
  • 4-cycle front tine tiller
  • 208cc engine
  • 6.5 inches tilling depth
  • 24 inches tilling width
  • Forward and reverse gears
  • Easy start engine
  • Liquid combustion technology
  • Carrying handles

Specification:

  • Brand: Husqvarna
  • Model: Husqvarna TF224
  • Weight: 100 pounds
  • Dimensions: 26 * 27.5 * 40 inches
  • Color: Black and Orange
Pros
  • It is self-propelled
  • It has forward and reverse gears for easy manoeuvrability
  • It has a wide tilling width
  • It is EPA certified and CARB compliant
  • It is durable
Cons
  • It is quite expensive, but its price matches its quality and reliability

10

Greenworks 10-Inch 8 Amp Corded Tiller 27072

The Greenworks 27072 corded tiller is another electric tiller that is worthy of a mention. It is suitable for homeowners with small gardens or lawns. It comes with an 8 amp electric motor that requires you to use an extension cord to power it. It has an easy start which is great for a beginner gardener, and it also has steel tines that move in forward rotation.

It has an adjustable cutting width of 10 inches and an adjustable cutting depth of 5 inches which is a bit short. It features foldable hands that allow it to be easily stored in a garden shed and its lightweight makes it easy to manoeuvre. This is an excellent choice for a small to medium-sized garden with an affordable price.

Key Features:

  • 8 amp motor
  • 8 inch forward rotating tines
  • Adjustable tilling width of 10 inches
  • Adjustable tilling depth of 5 inches
  • Foldable handles

Specification:

  • Brand: Greenworks 10-Inch 8 Amp Corded Tiller 27072
  • Model: Greenworks 10-Inch 8 Amp Corded Tiller 27072
  • Weight: 29.3 pounds
  • Dimensions: 33 * 15 * 15 inches
  • Color: Green
Pros
  • It is suitable for small to medium size gardens
  • It is affordable
  • It has adjustable cutting depth and width
  • It has foldable handles which allow you to store it easily
Cons
  • It is a bit noisy
  • It has a short cutting depth

Buying Guide Questions

What are the best garden tillers? How much does a garden tiller cost?

Our favourite garden tiller is the Earthwise TC70020 20-Volt Tiller; it has all the power and features you need to efficiently till your garden or lawn. A garden tiller cost between $80 to $700, the price of the garden tiller you will purchase depends on its features.

What is the difference between a garden tiller and a cultivator?

A garden tiller can break up compact soil while a cultivator mixes up loose dirt. A cultivator won’t work if you are trying to create a new plot because its tines are not made for heavy-duty jobs.

Are electric garden tillers any good?

Electric tillers are essential garden tools. They will save you from hours of hard work and backache. They are easy to start, unlike their gas counterparts, they are also very manageable and affordable.

Will a garden tiller break up roots? Should you till your garden every year?

Yes, a garden tiller can break up small roots without any problems. The tillers size, power and blade size, will tell you the maximum root size it can break up.

It is not a good idea to till your garden every year; you will be destroying the soil structure.

Can you use a garden tiller to level ground?

Making use if a tiller makes it easy to level the land.

Do you push or pull a garden tiller? Can you plant immediately after tilling?

Most times a tiller is pushed forward while it is in the ground but be careful so that it doesn’t pull you forward.

It is best to wait for two to three weeks after tilling to plant seeds. This allows the helpful microorganisms that were displaced by the tilling, time to replenish the nutrients in the soil.

Conclusion

If you think your lawn or garden needs help, then aerate it with a garden tiller. If you find it difficult to decide on the model to choose, then you can choose any of the models on our top choices for guidance. Choose your tiller based on your gardens needs. With the help of the garden tiller, your garden will be looking good all year long.