The 10 Best Wood Chippers

Updated April 10, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Wood Chippers
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 42 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. When it's time for some serious yard cleaning, you can take some of the hassle out of the process with one of these heavy-duty wood chippers and shredders, which can make quick work of all those branches, twigs, and leaves, and are available in electric and gas powered models. Just remember to take the necessary safety precautions (we've all seen "Fargo"). When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best wood chipper on Amazon.

10. LawnMaster FD1501

The LawnMaster FD1501 sits high above the ground, so it can clear mulch piles and debris when rolled around the yard. It features a helpful overload protector, so you don't accidentally stuff too much in it, and a push stick for easing tougher items through.
  • 10-to-1 mulching ratio
  • plastic hopper is delicate
  • doesn't shred branches thoroughly
Brand LawnMaster
Model FD1501
Weight 29.8 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

9. Champion Power Equipment 100137

The Champion Power Equipment 100137 is a solid machine that will likely pay for itself in the amount of mulch you'll be able to produce and, thus, not have to buy. The chipper chute accommodates large branches, while the shredder chute minces leaves.
  • tall cast-iron feeder
  • bag can hold 70 liters
  • difficult to move on uneven ground
Brand Champion Power Equipmen
Model 100137
Weight 225 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

8. Eco-Shredder ES1600

The Eco-Shredder ES1600 is a great choice for the DIY lawn care enthusiast. It can shred, chip, and mulch with its three-way feed, and when it's time to clean up, the rounded hopper is easy to remove for clearing out the waste.
  • comes with spare cutting blades
  • quieter than most other models
  • works quite slowly
Brand Eco-Shredder
Model ES1600
Weight 70.9 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

7. GreatCircle LCE01

The GreatCircle LCE01 is powered by a four-stroke, 212cc, OHV engine that allows it to cut branches down to 1/15th of their original size. It features a vacuum inlet that you can use to suck material into the chipper instead of wasting time raking.
  • low oil sensor to protect the engine
  • starts reliably in cold weather
  • feels sturdy and well-made
Brand Great Circle Machinery
Model pending
Weight 132.4 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

6. YardBeast 2510

The massive YardBeast 2510 is probably a little much for most people's needs, but if you're a professional landscaper or live on a farm, you might want to consider this model. Its industrial design includes a heavy-duty transmission that provides consistent power.
  • high-gauge steel construction
  • powder-coated for durability
  • can eat through almost anything
Model 2050
Weight 270 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

5. Tazz 30520

With a 5-year warrantied 212cc Viper engine, the Tazz 30520 will eat up and spit out branches and leaves of all sizes in a matter of minutes. The rugged debris bag features a bottom zipper for easy emptying and a dock-and-lock connector for quick hook-ups.
  • flat-free 11-inch wheels
  • rarely ever jams
  • straightforward assembly
Brand Tazz Chipper Shredders
Model 30520
Weight 131 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

4. Earthquake 9060300

The Earthquake 9060300 is a professional-grade tool that's perfect for the homeowner with a large plot of land. Equipped with heavy-duty knives and hammers, it can turn your bulkiest yard waste into manageable piles for convenient disposal.
  • strong briggs and stratton engine
  • durable metal feed chute
  • starts with one pull
Brand Earthquake
Model 9060300
Weight 122 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

3. Patriot CSV-2515

It is rare to find an electric model that is almost as powerful as its gas-powered brethren, but the Patriot CSV-2515 fits the bill. It runs quietly and, despite weighing 95 pounds, the large wheels make it easy to reposition.
  • includes a collection bag
  • backed by a two-year warranty
  • can handle green branches
Brand Patriot
Model CSV-2515
Weight 126 pounds
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

2. Power Smart PS10

The Power Smart PS10 is not only surprisingly effective for its small size, but is also quite affordable, so any homeowner should feel pleased with their purchase. Weighing roughly 30 pounds, it is exceedingly easy to move around the yard.
  • safety kill switch
  • auto shutoff if jammed or overfed
  • doesn't require much storage space
Brand Power Smart
Model PS10
Weight 31 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

1. Patriot CSV-3100B

The gas-powered Patriot CSV-3100B is a multifeatured unit that incorporates a side discharge, letting you work in the same place all day without moving it. It quickly makes coin-sized chips of any branches three inches or less in diameter.
  • can attach a collection bag
  • fuel-efficient motor
  • hassle-free feed system
Brand Patriot
Model CSV-3100B
Weight 181 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

Deciding Which Wood Chipper Works For You

A wood chipper can help reduce huge piles of branches and brambles down to slivers and discs that are easy to remove or repurpose. Pulling out overgrown brush or chopping down a tree are just the start of a landscaping project; breaking down those felled materials so you can enjoy a clean, healthy property is also part of the job.

It's important to understand the capabilities of a wood chipping unit before you make a purchase, as not all units offer the same level of processing power. Some genuine wood chippers can chew their way through thick pieces of wood with ease, helping you to break down branches several inches thick. Other units that might be referred to as "wood chippers" are actually intended to chop through leaves, twigs, and more slender sticks and branches. Some such wood chippers are actually more akin to leaf mulchers, in fact. It's not hard to tell which unit will suffice: simply measure the diameter of a number of the branches you need to break down and then compare their average thickness to the size for which a chipper is rated.

Next consider which type of motor you prefer in a wood chipper, gas powered or electric. Gas powered chippers have motors usually rated in terms of horsepower and usually offer more overall power, able to break down larger, tougher branches than their electric counterparts. However several electric chippers have motors rated at 14 amps and higher and can indeed chop up plenty of larger pieces of wood, processing bushes, shrubs, and most sticks with relative ease. And even though many gas powered units might be more powerful than electric chippers, they are also often more of a hassle to operate, necessitating trips to the gas station, proper use of oil ratios, and so on. Electric chippers, on the other hand, can simply be plugged in.

All widely available wood chippers are relatively portable, almost universally featuring two wheels and a post for stability. While you might need a truck to move one of the large, commercial grade chippers used by crews clearing old growth trees or cleaning up entire properties in a single afternoon, the units in the budget range of most homeowners or smaller landscaping companies can be moved by hand. That said, some units are large and cumbersome enough to where you will only want to position them once or twice per lawn care session, and trasnport branches, brambles, and leaves to the chipper instead of moving the machine to the debris piles.

There are pros and cons to choosing a device so large that moving it is an undertaking. While moving the material to be processed to the chipper takes time and effort, the speed at which a larger unit processes debris will usually make up for the time spent repositioning it. And for larger branches, you will need the capacity offered by these bigger chippers anyway -- if you need to break down branches approaching three inches in thickness, you likely shouldn't consider those smaller, more easily portable units.

Safe And Proper Wood Chipper Use

Using a wood chipper is not a dangerous task provided you wear appropriate safety gear and you use the unit responsibly. At the bare minimum, you should wear eye protection and safety gloves when operating a wood chipper. A wood chipper can create fine dust that can irritate the eyes and can occasionally throw out larger pieces of debris that can cause a more serious scratch to the cornea.

As for gloves, you will be feeding rough, often sharp brambles into a unit that will pull them from you hands: gloves prevent splinters, scratches, puncture wounds, and cuts. It's also a good idea to wear hearing protection when operating a wood chipper, especially if you will be running the unit for extended periods of time. Many wood chippers operate at a volume range well above the 75 decibel level that can lead to damaged hearing with prolonged exposure, thus ear protection is strongly recommended.

Never try to feed a piece of wood into the unit for which the wood chipper is not rated. Trying to put a four inch thick branch into a chipper designed only for three inch diameter sections can damage or break the motor or else can at least clog up, dull, and crack its blades. Take the time to split larger pieces of wood before you try to process them; otherwise you will ultimately waste much more time (and money) getting your wood chipper repaired or replaced.

Even when you are feeding appropriate material into your wood chipper, make sure you do so slowly and steadily. Feeding too much material into the chipper at once can have the same effect as feeding branches that are too large into the unit. Also watch out for certain plants like bamboo, vines, and other fibrous plants which can become snarled in the blades rather then being cut right through. Plants such as these are best chopped into shorter lengths by hand and then discarded.

Ideas For Using That Natural Mulch

A wood chipper can be used to create a thick, robust mulch consisting of everything from minced leaves to discs of wood to slivers and shreds of brambles and bushes. The resulting mulch is perfect for ground covering that helps slow or stop weed growth and that can help keep established plants healthy.

When mulch is placed in a thickness of two to three inches over the soil, it keeps the ground cooler and moist, helping the earth retain much of its water and preventing the sun from drying out or overheating the soil. Just make sure to keep mulch at least a foot or so from the stem or trunk of established flowers, bushes, or trees, as a plant gets much of its air exposure where the roots meet the stalk.

As a ground cover, chipped wood is an ideal solution. Unlike finer mulch blends made from leaves, wood chips break down very slowly and will stay intact and in place for many months in most climates. That means money saved on store bought mulch and less effort than you would expend constantly weeding a given patch of garden, planted bed, or the areas lining a walkway or patio. If your property uses lots of mulch each year, a wood chipper will pay for itself in terms of savings.

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Last updated on April 10, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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