How does a brush cutter work?


Before doing actual work with your brush cutter, there are a few things that you have to do to ensure that the equipment will run smoothly all throughout the operation.

Here is a checklist of things you have to do before giving your best brush cutter for small trees a go.


  • Lawn Arrangement

    It is recommendable that you prep your lawn before working on it. Check your working environment for any hazards. Get rid of anything that might obstruct your equipment while operating.

    Warn your family members as well that you will be working on your lawn. Make sure that no one is going to be in your workspace once you start working. Keep a safe distance of 50 feet or more from people.
  • Familiarity with Control and Safety Features

    Needless to say, you have to understand how your cutter works before using it to avoid injuries and accidents. While you’re at it, make sure to Inspect your brush cutter to ensure that attachments are mounted properly and securely.

    Wear your harness as well. Make sure to adjust the harness and handles to suit your height better, so you can conveniently and comfortably work on your lawn.

    How to Wear Harness

    Shoulder Harness

    When putting on this type of harness, make sure that the spring hook is about a hand’s width below your right hip.

    Shoulder Strap

    When your harness comes in the form of a shoulder strap, make sure that the hook is about a hand’s width below your right hip.

  • Fuel System Preparation

    If you have a gas brush cutter, you will have to fuel up your equipment before using it. However, there are two types of engines that require different types of fuel, so you have to check before topping your tank up.

    For 2-stroke engines:

    2-stroke engines require a mixture of gas and oil. Yes, this means that you will have to mix fuel before refuelling your brush cutter. Check on the fuel mixture ratio that your equipment will need. Most of the time, oil to gas ratio is 1:50, but some manufacturers recommend 1:25, 1:30, and 1:40. Check your manual to make sure that you have the proper measurement ratio for your cutter.

    Friendly Tip: Bottles of pre-mixed fuel for 2-stroke engines are available in the market. You can opt to purchase one if you are having a hard time mixing gas and oil.

    For 4-stroke engines:

    Unlike 2-stroke engines, 4-stroke engines have a lubricated inner system, so you won’t need to mix oil in the gas just to fuel it up.

    Note: Before refuelling your brush cutter, make sure to turn your equipment off and give it time to cool down.
  • Protective Gear and Equipment

    We cannot emphasize enough how important it is to wear protective gears when operating an equipment like a brush cutter. It is important to protect yourself in case something goes awry while working to prevent any injuries.

     Here is a checklist of what you have to wear:

    • Brush Shield Protector

      Make sure to wear safety goggles, face shield, face screen, or a visor to keep your eyes protected. Goggles and glasses are fine, but it is more advisable to wear a gear that protects your entire face.
    • Hearing Protection

      Wear sound barriers like earplugs or ear mufflers to prevent hearing damage due to prolonged exposure in high decibels of sound coming from the cutter.
    • Gloves

      To protect your hands, wear heavy-duty work gloves made of leather or other wear-resistant material.
    •  Leg Protection

      Make sure to wear heavy trousers or long pants that are made of heavy materials.
    • Protective Boots

      Avoid wearing sandals or slippers when handling a brush cutter. To protect your feet and maintain good footing, wear sturdy boots with nonslip soles like steel toes and safety boots.



Brush Cutter Starting Procedure


  1. Place your brush cutter down in a well-ventilated area.
  2. Make sure that you are at least 10 ft away from any combustible materials.
  3. Press the primer bulb at least 5 times – if you have a primer bulb.
  4. Use choke if the engine of your cutter is cold.
  5. Start your brush cutter.


Brush cutters differ in starting procedures. Most brush cutters have a pull-start mechanism. This involves pulling a cord to power up the engine. However, some manufacturers install added start-up procedures for safety purposes. Make sure to consult manufacturer’s manual or instructions to make sure that you are properly executing the start-up procedure.


Proper Positioning

If you are using a shoulder harness, make sure that the equipment is suspended from the eyelet using the spring hook. But if you are using a shoulder strap, attach the hook to the carrying ring on the machine.


Adjust the handles and push the carrying ring along the shaft until the brush cutter is balanced. The cutting attachment should be just above the ground to achieve optimum cutting angle.


The correct brush cutter position is with your arms slightly bent and your wrists straight. Remember to always hold the brush cutter with both hands.


Mowing Techniques

Basic Technique

If your balde rotates counter-clockwise, a-right-to-left cutting motion is recommended. However, if your blade rotates clockwise, a left-to-right cutting motion will suit your equipment better. By using these methods, the trimmings will surely fall on the cutting area alone.


Long Grass Trimming

When you’re cutting long grass or tough weeds, it is recommended that you pass the area twice. An initial pass will cut the top of the grass. Then, position the cutter lower as it passes again to cut the remaining grass.


Hill Cutting

A good method to use when cutting a sloped area is the strip method. This is done by cutting a strip parallel to the slope, then returning along the swath. Afterwards, move on to the next strip by repeating the method.


Cutting Around Obstacles

To do this, it’s best to use the deflector on your brush cutter as a guide. Position the deflector  against the obstacle and use it as a guide as you move. This will ensure that you will not hit the obstacle as you cut the surrounding area.

You may also enjoy reading How to Sharpen a Brush Cutter Blade

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