Best Lawn De-thatcher Reviews and Buying Guide

The benefits of a beautiful yard and garden are clear to see.

Yet, any lawn can lose appeal when a dense matting of roots, clippings and other materials builds up over time. This is known as thatch and to get rid it of effectively you need the best lawn de-thatcher you can find.

Best Lawn De-thatcher With Reviews

What Is Thatch and Why Remove It?

Thatch is something that builds up naturally over time, especially in certain types of high-maintenance lawns. Even if you look after your garden fairly well, the loose clippings, leaves, dead grass, roots, stems and other things can eventually form a thick covering over your grass.

To find out if a lawn has too much thatch buildup, it is recommended that you cut out a modestly sized, triangular piece of turf. This should be a few inches deep. If you can see a spongy section of material above the soil that is over an inch thick when pressed down, it is time to do something.

This is an issue that can harm your garden in the following ways. First of all, this matted debris stops water and air from getting to the soil, depriving the grass of all of those vital nutrients that it needs. In this way, if you let it build up for too long then the grass can end up getting damaged or even dying, although in some cases a small amount of thatch can be beneficial.

Too much thatch weakens the grassroots and encourages the appearance of pests and diseases too. This can be just as harmful as the previous point if you don’t do something about it in time. The fact that moisture can be trapped here means that it may also lead to the appearance of mold.

While this may sound very dramatic, the truth is that removing the thatch is a simple, fast-acting solution. Provided that you do this correctly, the lawn will soon be completely healthy again.

In What Ways Can This Be Done?

There are essentially three different ways that you can try to remove this thatch from your garden.

The first approach is to simply lift up the material that has gathered using your hands or a small tool like a gardening fork. This is the most time-consuming and least effective way of dealing with thatch. It may work reasonably well on a small garden but it is far from ideal. For a start, it is difficult and tiring work to lift out everything that you want rid of by hand.

The next idea is to use a rake to manually clear the thatch. This is better than using your hands but still leaves a lot to be desired. Many people choose this option for smaller lawns, but even a relatively tiny patch of grass will tend to eventually need something more comprehensive.

Finally, a mechanical lawn de-thatcher is your best option. This lets you quickly clear your lawn of unwanted material and get it back to looking its best. You simply pull this tool over the grass and it does the job of pulling out the unwanted material as it goes.

The Main Benefits of a Lawn De-thatcher

There are some very worthwhile reasons for using a lawn de-thatcher to carry out this job.

  • Works quickly: The best lawn de-thatcher models are designed to let you very quickly clear away the buildup of materials that you want to get rid of.
  • Adjusts to your needs: Every garden is different and this means that you need to adapt your approach accordingly. With a good dethatching machine you can adjust the depth precisely.
  • Easy to use: You don’t need to be a gardening expert to clear away troublesome thatch from your garden. These de-thatchers are incredibly easy to start working with.
  • Gives great results: Of course, the most important point of all is how good your lawn looks after you have finished doing this job. With the best lawn de-thatcher you can find, it will be left looking fantastic.

How to Choose the Right Model

There are plenty of good tools of this type around. Choosing the perfect one for your needs means looking into the different aspects to see what you most need.

The width of its path: The wider that your device cuts the quicker that you will complete any job, so one that has a wide path is particularly important if you have a big garden or don’t have a lot of spare time to do this job.

How adjustable it is: As mentioned earlier, a good de-thatcher will typically offer you a number of ways of adjusting it.

The weight: A light machine will be more maneuverable and far easier to control. If you are worried about using a heavy, awkward machine then the weight is a point to look out for.

How simple and comfortable it is to operate: Do you prefer a machine that can be switched on with a single push of a button? Would you like a variety of different functions or just one basic mode of operation?

Whether there is a warranty: As with any type of tool, the presence of a good warranty will help you to feel that you are getting a product you can rely upon.

Pull or tow?: If you have a small garden and like some exercise then you may be happy pulling on a machine of this type. In other cases, a model that can be towed may make more sense.

The Best Lawn De-thatchers We Reviewed

1. Greenworks Corded De-thatcher

The corded de-thatcher from Greenworks has a 1 amp motor that powers it along smoothly. It is comfortable to use thanks to an adjustable handle and an ergonomic, padded grip that won’t tire out your hand. The 14-inch dethatching path means that it gets the job done pretty quickly too. You can also adjust the depth using the three different positions that are available, to ensure that you remove all of the matted layers that may be stopping your grass from growing healthily in any type of situation.

In terms of the construction of this tool, the use of a total of 18 14-inch stainless steel tines means that you get a sharp performance for a long time, although other, bigger models often come with more tines on them.

In addition, the inclusion of replacement tines means that you can carry on using this tool even if any of the originals get damaged eventually. This machine has a simple push-button operation for a quick start. It also has foldable handles so that it can be neatly stored away after each use.

We like
  • Robust construction
  • Set of replacement, stainless steel tines
  • Adjustable handle
We don't like
  • Some problems noted with it clogging up quickly

2. Sun Joe Electric Scarifier Plus Lawn De-thatcher With Collection Bag

The Sun Joe Electric Scarifier Plus Lawn De-thatcher with collection bag is suited to small- and medium-sized yards and gardens that are in need of having new life breathed into them. It has a minimum cutting height of 0.12” and a 13-amp motor to power it. You can effortlessly clear a path that is 12.6” wide using this de-thatcher, clearing out the awkward thatch without any problems.

Good quality spring steel tines and AirBoost technology are incorporated so that it picks up the maximum amount of thatch each time that it passes over your lawn.

As well as dethatching effectively, this machine also has a scarifier function that cuts the roots of the grass to allow for better, healthier growth and thicker lawns. There is a useful 2-year warranty included with this ETL approved tool. Among the flexibility on offer is the possibility of changing the raking depth from 0.4 inches below the soil to the same distance above the soil, thanks to the 5-position control knob. This means that you can set it to the exact depth that your garden needs each time that you use it.

We like
  • Additional scarifier function
  • 2 year warranty
  • Variable depth adjustment
We don't like
  • Some comments that the scarifier function is fairly limited

3. Mantis Aerator/De-thatcher

The size of the tools in this Mantis aerator/de-thatcher combo pack means that it may be the best lawn de-thatcher if you need to maintain a large area of grass that it is impossible to clear using a rake or a smaller device. It works with the majority of Mantis tillers and cultivators, fitting on easily so that you are ready to get going very quickly.

This product is marketed as being ideal for use when the soil is of the compact, clay type that can be so difficult to work with.

You get 4 sets of tempered steel blades that cut into the soil to aerate it. This is as important as de-thatching for some lawns. The other element is that of the 60 spring-steel picks that dethatch in a 15-inch path every time that it passes over the lawn. In this way, it can keep any garden in great condition. The size of this tool is 15 x 8 x 9 inches, and it weighs 17.35 pounds. It does take a bit of effort to operate, so it is likely to suit you if you don’t mind get some exercise while working on your garden.

We like
  • Dethatches and aerates
  • Wide, 15-inch path
  • Quality construction
We don't like
  • Needs the user to put some effort into pulling it

4. Earthquake DK43 De-thatcher Kit

The Earthquake DK43 De-thatcher Kit is designed to work with the same firm’s popular range of mini cultivators, meaning that it can be used together with a number of different tools. It can also be attached to other brands of cultivator but this involves a bit of customization work and the results may not be perfect.

There is enough power here for even tough lawns that have a nasty buildup of thatch to be cleared, although it isn’t the most powerful model on the market.
It measures 20 x 9.5 x 12.5 inches and weighs 15 pounds. This is a tool that is easy to assemble and simple to use as well. Fast, efficient, and lightweight, it is a good option for just about any size of garden, although you might prefer a bigger, more powerful option if you have to cover a lot of ground.

On the other hand, if you want a light and user-friendly device, this is a smart choice. The portability and durability of this Earthquake tool means that it is also suitable for transporting from one place to another if you need to dethatch in different areas.

We like
  • Simple to assemble
  • Lightweight and easy to use
  • Dethatches efficiently
We don't like
  • Can’t be used with every type of cultivator

5. Agri-Fab 40-Inch Tine Tow Dethatcher

Twenty durable spring tines mean that the Agri-Fab 40-Inch Tine Tow Dethatcher gardening tool does a solid job of removing the built-up thatch in your garden. Those tines are rust-proof and can be replaced if necessary, while they have also been heat-treated to make them more durable. Each tine is 3/16 inches in size and they are fixed to a heavy-duty steel tray. The transport handle allows you to lower and raise these tines very simply whenever you need to.

It works in swathes that are each an impressive 40 inches wide as you pass it over your lawn. This de-thatcher is made in the US and features semi-pneumatic wheels that are 2.7 inches in diameter and 1 and a half inches in width. A 40” tray is capable of holding a maximum of 70 lbs. It is also worth noting that it comes with a 3-year limited warranty for greater peace of mind.

When it arrives you will need to get it ready for the first use, although this is very easy to do and doesn’t require the use of any tools.

We like
  • Durable, replaceable tines
  • Well-designed to make dethatching simple and fast
  • Good range of features
We don't like
  • May be too lightweight for some areas

6. Brinly De-thatcher

You can swiftly remove thatch from your lawn with the help of this Brinly de-thatcher. It works with a couple of rows of tines, each containing 10 pre-assembled tines that flex independently of each other as it works.

You can switch between 3 different operating modes depending upon what you need to on each occasion that you use it. These are dethatch, transport, and scarify. Each of these modes is useful at varying times of year and in different situations, so it is important that you understand when it is best to engage each one of them. You can engage the right mode simply from the seat of the tractor that is pulling it.

The fact that transport wheels are included and are easy to engage means that it is easy to cross the likes of paths and driveways without any hassles. As for the scarifying option, this is used to break up the soil before the lawn is seeded and fertilized. The overall weight is 7.33 pounds and it measures 41 x 11.5 x 11 inches.

We like
  • 3 different operating modes
  • Transport wheels included for getting around more easily
  • Option of scarifying as well as dethatching
We don't like
  • Needs to be towed


Finding the best lawn de-thatcher is all about looking for one that contains the features that you most need. Having reviewed these models, our opinion is that the top model for the majority of gardeners is the Mantis aerator/de-thatcher.

This a highly versatile tool that gives you an easy way of keeping even a relatively big lawn in tip-top condition.

With the option of aerating or de-thatching, you can carry out the most important tasks needed to keep any lawn healthy and green. The good-quality construction and the well thought out features mean that this is a tool you can trust to give you a great-looking garden year after year.

Samuel Ade
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