Manual Post Hole Digger Buying Guide
If you have ever dug a hole with a regular shovel you know how physically taxing the job can be. A post hole digger can make this job much easier and faster due to its design which grabs the soil and pulls it out of the way, so easy that even a kid can use it. Below we listed some things you need to consider before you purchase.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Manual Post Hole Digger
- Handle – You want the handle of the digger to be comfortable, sturdy, strong, and easy to grip. The new designs eliminate the once-common “knuckle collision” that used to be a problem with older models. Many handles are made from either wood or fiberglass. The fiberglass handles are much stronger and you won’t have to worry about them splintering or rotting down the road. You also want to make sure that the handle is securely attached to the head of the hole digger so it does not come loose or worse yet, come off while you are in the middle of digging holes. Also, look for cushioning on the handles which makes gripping much more comfortable.
- Size of the Blade – In general, the larger the blade, the better the digger will be at grabbing and moving the necessary dirt. Look for strong and sturdy blades that have plenty of size behind them. Pointed blades that are wide at the top and tapered at the end are great for digging through soil, gravel, and hard dirt as the pointed end can chisel away at these obstructions.
- Materials used in construction – Steel diggers are much more reliable and stronger than those made of wood or cheaper metal. Steel diggers are going to cost more but they are going to last a lot longer as well and that can be worth spending extra money if you need your digger to last a long time. If you save a few dollars initially then purchase another one in a year, you have really saved nothing.
- Budget – What budget have you set for yourself? You do not need to purchase the most expensive digger but looking for the cheapest is always a mistake. Normally, post hole diggers can cost anywhere from $20 to as much as a couple of hundred. Decide on the amount you want to spend then eliminate the styles that don’t fit your budget. Just remember to not make the choice based solely on budget or you could easily end up with something that is not the quality you need.
- Warranty – A good, long, included warranty is important to look for when purchasing your tools. A company that backs up their tools with a good warranty is what you want to look for as you know they’re likely to last a long time. This protects you from quality issues during manufacturing. Some companies even offer a lifetime, limited warranty which is ideal.
- Weight – Don’t choose an overly heavy digger to work with. You’ll need to carry this around your garden or yard while using it and if it is too heavy this will cause shoulder and neck problems over time. On the other hand, you don’t want to choose the lightest one either because they will likely be flimsy and you will have a hard time doing difficult post hole digging jobs. You should look for a post hole digger that is medium in weight and sturdy. That should be sufficient for most your digging jobs.
Is a Manual Post Hole Digger Right for You?
If you are not sure that the manual style model is right for you, read the following instructions on how they are used. It is a very simple model to execute, so much so that kids and older people can use this style to successfully dig the holes they need.
- Water the ground you will be digging so that it becomes soft. If it’s been raining, you will obviously not need this step.
- Grab the handles with both hands, keeping your hands level on each side of the digger.
- Raise the tool and stab it down into the ground where you want the hole to be. Use as much force as you can.
- Move the blades up and down and well as in and out to loosen up the soil
- Move the handles of the digger either together or apart to grasp the soil. Different models use different methods for this.
- Remove the soil you have clamped within the blades by lifting the digger up and put the dirt to the side so you can reuse it to fill in at the end of your job.
- Repeat the above steps until the hole is at your desired depth. To set a post, the hole should be at least 12” deep. If you are setting the posts in concrete, you will pour concrete into the hole once it has been emptied and before you set the post.
Having the best quality post hole digger that you can afford will make your planting, fencing, and all other hole digging jobs much easier. If you are a serious gardener or DIY enthusiast, you will be glad that you purchased this useful and efficient tool for your collection.
Even though there are two main types of diggers, manual and gas powered, there are different designs among those two types that you can choose from. Manual models are much less expensive and are easier to use than gas powered models but the gas-powered models are faster at digging the holes.
The information in this buyer’s guide is designed to help you understand what you should be looking for when you start researching the various kinds of hole diggers available. Our information on handle construction, blade size, materials used in construction, and other factors will help you sort through the different models available to choose the best design for you. Once you have narrowed the field you can see which models meet the requirements you are looking for and choose the one that best fits those needs and preferences.
Having the correct knowledge and the best information will enable you to make an informed decision that will be a good value and will last you a long time. With proper care and storage, your post hole digger will last you for years to come.
- Seymour Structron – http://www.seymourmidwest.com/en/
- Ames Companies – http://www.ames.com/
- Bully Tools – http://www.bullytools.com/