A rake is a rake, right? Wrong. Finding the best garden rakes can be hard to come by. The last rake I bought couldn’t manage to make it to the end of the raking season, which just goes to show you how important it can be to purchase the right product the first time around. The best garden rake has three things: durability, efficiency, and ease of use. Today, I’ll be looking at three leading rakes in the market and deciding which would work best with the other tools in your garage.
Best Garden Rake 2017
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Bond LH011 5 Tine Cultivator
This is the best type of durability you can expect to get in this price range. You’re going to be using this product for much longer than that one-season hunk of junk I bought. After a few years, the heads might start to bend, but that’s to be expected with this level of quality.
Now this is for the folks who don’t just want their tools to last, but to look good doing it. With it’s powder-coated paint, the Bond LH011 won’t rust, even after several dewy seasons of muckraking. Your paint won’t scratch off, you won’t have to lug around a coppery tool, and your neighbours won’t think you’re cheap!
Everyone needs a good grip on his or her day-to-day, and Bond LH011 has you covered (for raking, that is). With its handy grip, this rake won’t ever slide through your hands, even after a rainfall. All tools ought to be adjustable, and rakes are no different. With its strong yet weightless steel handles that adjust from 25-inches to 37-inches, the Bond LH011 gives you the extra reach and leverage you need to get the job done, no matter what your height is.
What I like
This rake has a ton of useful features. It’s lightweight, yet durable, cheap yet high quality, and it’s adjustable so that anyone can use it. With high-quality material like this going for a rather low price, you have no excuse to flake on raking the lawn again.
What I don’t like
While the Bond LH011 is of a high quality for its price range, it still has a lifespan. Like most fan rakes, eventually the head is liable to bend back and get tangled up in itself. Also, while the features are useful, they’re liable to break down after a few seasons as well.
Bully Tools 92309 12-Gauge 16-Inch Bow Rake
The first selling point to the Bully Tools 92309 is the quality of its materials. This is the type of product you’ll only ever need to buy once; with a 10-gauge steel head, the 92309 is likely to last you a lifetime. And if it doesn’t last you that lifetime, Bully Tools has you covered. A tool in this price range with such top-notch material should last, and to back up that premise, Bully Tools puts a lifetime limited warranty on it (including repairs!).
The product is also expertly engineered. With 16 steel tines, the Bully Tools 92309 can rake through the thickest of garden gunk like it was a light breeze. Alright, you might have to put your back into it a little, but it’s still one of the most effective tools on the market. If there’s anything to say about American manufacturing, this rake says it. It’s sturdy, domestic, and made of steel. You can’t mistake a product this heavy duty with a Canadian garden rake.
What I like
It’s heavy duty, it’s as good as you can get without going powered, and it’s got a lifetime warranty to boot. There’s a lot to like about this product, from it’s high-quality material to its sturdy engineering. And while it might be the most expensive rake on the list, it’s still fairly priced.
What I don’t like
Three words: steel is heavy. That said, this rake isn’t for everyone. If you’re trying to teach your son or daughter about proper lawn care, this might not be the product to start them off with. Also the reach, though generous at 58-inches, is (figuratively) set in stone; no sizing it down to fit into your little ones’ hands either.
Jackson 16-Tine Kodiak Forged Bow Rake
Much like the Bully Tools rake, the Jackson Kodiak bow rake has a 16-tine forged head. Again, this is the ideal type of head that’s likely to last you a long time. It’s heavy duty, it’s effective, and it’ll be ready for the next generation of rakers. However, unlike the Bully Tools rake, the Jackson rake has a steel ferrule. This is so that the head stays properly secured to the handle, preventing any sort of disconnection.
Those of you who have ever used a garden rake understand how hard you sometimes have to grip it with both of your hands. The Jackson rake provides extra grip and cushioning in its mid-grip sleeve to relieve some of that discomfort. As for your other hand, it will likely be resting on the Jackson’s fiberglass handle. This is to prevent any sort of breakage, in case the force you use is strong enough to snap wood, as fiberglass is a much stronger material.
That being said, it doesn’t mean a sturdy handle can’t have a comfortable grip. The Jackson’s cushion end grip was manufactured for comfort and control, and to relieve any of the hand-fatigue that comes with a hard day’s work.
What I like
Much like the Bully Tools product, the Jackson bow rake is a sturdy piece of manufacturing. With it’s fiberglass handle and steel ferrule, it’s practically bound to stay with you through the long haul.
What I don’t like
Again, steel is heavy. Just like the Bully Tools product, the Jackson rake can be cumbersome in the wrong hands. However, unlike the Bully Tools bow rake, this product does not come with a lifetime warranty.
My Top Recommendation
Although it’s a close one to call, I’m going to have to give this round to the Bully Tools 92309. Out of all the rakes on this list, it’s most likely the right one for you. It’s literally guaranteed to stick with you through the thick leaves and the thin ones and is simply the most effective tool for any garden raking job. If it’s only downside is that it’s too heavy for children, then that just means it’s not meant for kid’s work.