Written by Terry Smith

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UK’s best electric weed burners: Top electric weed killers tested

This article was last updated on July 7th, 2022 at 10:14 pm

We all know the hassle of garden weeds and no one enjoys getting rid of them, it’s tedious and if it’s not dealt with, it can be a real problem – they just keep going and it’s a real eyesore to look at when weeds are growing up through crevices. They appear absolutely everywhere and even with different weed killers, some of which are pet friendly, using chemicals might not be ideal for you. And a weed puller, as great as it is, will do little to help deep set roots in between cracks in your pathways. Lopping the top off a weed is a sure certain way of guaranteeing they’ll come back stronger. Enter the electric weed burner, which feels a little safer to use than a standard heavy duty weed burner. This is worth a look if you’re in a hurry, otherwise if you’re prepared to take your time, electric weed burners work great from my testing:

Me testing the ToolTronix electric weed burner for power, safety, and value

WARNING: When using an extension cable reel be sure to unwind the cable entirely. These units draw 2000 Watts which will heat up the cable on your reel and eventually melt them together if the circuit breaker fails! This is a real threat and something that happened to me as a youngster on a table saw. Always observe sensible electrical safety when using so many amps.

Pro Tip: Please don’t expect electric weed killers to be as effective as the heavy duty weed burners available on my other review that includes gas weed burners. They take a little while to heat up and become hot enough to burn weeds – approximately a minute from testing many in this review. Think of them as a giant paint stripper. However, if you don’t want to use chemicals and can’t reach with little garden weeder with a fulcrum, or you’re not confident with gas power, then these work just great:

Before using an electric weed burner

And a couple of minutes later the area is clear:

After using an electric weed burner

So I’ve tested the best electric weed killers on the market currently to decide which is the most efficient in removing those weeds that just won’t die, without doing major damage to the surroundings. They vary in price but for how cheap most electric weed killers are, they’re a god sent in the garden for saving time and keeping weeds away properly. You don’t need to get on your hands and knees either, so it makes weed killing a lot easier.

Anyway, now you know why electric weed killers are a godsend, it’s time we told you about our favourites that are currently on the market. To help you buy the right one for you, we’ve included a buyers guide below too.

Best electric weed burner picks from testing:

ToolTronix 2000W Electric Weed Killer Hot Air Burner – Best electric weed burner [proven and tested personally]

Best alternative: Draper Weed Burner – there really is nothing between this and the ToolTronix – select whichever is cheaper with confidence [proven and tested personally]

Electric weed burner and killer (Second best option) Not a bad option and very similar to the Draper

Weed Burner Electric Weed Killer Thermal Weeding Stick (Best expensive option)

Draper Weed Burner (Best cheapest/budget option) 

Worth a mention:

Qdreclod Electric Weed Burner 3M Cable 2000W Garden Gear Weed Burner Hot Air Weed Killer 5-in-1 (Best option for multipurpose but still with good specs) 

Hozelock 4184 0000 Green Power Thermal Weeder

Specification: Voltage: ~230-240, Frequency: 50Hz, Power: 2000W, Air Temperature Setting: 50°C / 600°C ,Cable length: approx 5′ 5″

What you’re going to appreciate straight out the box as I did without question is the setup. You literally push two pieces together and you’re ready to go. These lock and can unlock for easy storage too! You can see this in the video. But here’s a picture showing you just how simple this is out the box:

The ToolTronix electric weed burner comes as two sections out the box and could not be simpler to setup

As I say – just literally slot these two sections together and you’re up and running:

Just pop these two sections together that are locked with a pin push button and you’re set

Before we get into this here’s a quick video of what I think this thing can do, and what it can’t. And how I compare it to a more heavy duty gas weed burner:

This burner is pretty similar to the others in the review but with the added advantage of being well priced and in my opinion one of the most reliable and powerful. From testing there are a few things I would point out though. Firstly you want to let this cool down for 15 minutes after use. As I mentioned above it’s like a giant paint stripper and the heat exchanger is extremely hot, to the point it’ll actually set weeds on fire:

The Tooltronix electric weed burner gets so hot that weeds set on fire

It’s got some decent specs and has the right amount of power, coming in at 2000W and 230-40V, so it’s definitely got what you need. It does take a good several seconds to get it up to full power (5-6) so it definitely takes a bit longer, but it still has the burning power to sort weeds out. It has two heat settings too, so you can adjust it as necessary. The detachable handle is pretty useful too, especially for moving about and storage. It’s some pretty good kit and has the right power, so it fits the boxes as a weed burner, so what’s wrong with it?

Well, despite its power, if you set the burner on the lower heat setting, it is a little weaker than the others in this list and it takes a little longer to use. Just boot it straight onto the top setting, you really need all the power available to you:

Don’t mess about with the lowest power setting go straight for the second

It gets the job done, but be patient with it, as it will take that little bit longer to burn weeds down to a suitable point when you compare this to a more heavy duty gas weed burner as I mention earlier in the article. On the plus side though I used this good hour and it’s pretty lightweight, we were worried it might not last as long as the others with it being so light, but then going back to paint strippers, they are light too! Don’t get me wrong, it still feels pretty robust, and it’s cool down and heat generation time is pretty much within the range of the best weed burners. That said, it worked for me and it got the job done, and for its price we don’t see this as too much of an issue. Just keep in mind if you’re using your weed burner for a large area or long time, or if you will be needing it often then gas might be the better option.

Summary:

Compared to the other burners in this list, this is the best value for money and performs the best. It has quick generation time, feels safe and has the right amount of power (as well as variable heat settings to control this) which make it perfect for use in the garden. It’s a bargain and has everything you need, so it’s easily our top place spot and is our first choice for electric weed burners. It’s pretty similar to the Electric Weed Burner & Killer burner in second place in terms of design and ergonomics, but it’s better value for money, I was pleasantly surprised with its reliability and robustness.

Specification: Voltage: ~230V, Frequency: 50Hz, Power: 2000W, Air Temperature Setting: 60°C/ 650°C ,Cable length: 1.7M

Second up on our list, and the equal best electric weed burner we’ve used so far, is the Draper weed burner weeding stick and it is a direct comparison and competitor for the top pick – I really liked using this weed burner.. There are a few versions of this product out there but they’re all fairly similar. Priced at bargain money, it really ticked the boxes for us and one of the only known reliable brands in this market, as well as the Hozelock which we feel isn’t quite as good on value when all is compared.

It has a couple of attachments for both burning and lighting which were a little flimsy to get on at first but fine after a while, and it was ideal for lighting longer weeds to then burn them down when they get shorter. The flame lit up quickly and you could really feel the heat come off it, but it was perfectly controlled and was powerful enough to remove weeds efficiently.  The cool down time took a good 10 minutes but this is expected, as the burner itself heats to around 650° (standard to high temperature for good weed burners).

The variable heat settings came in handy too and it felt more controllable, but it also meant you could pick the appropriate setting for the appropriate weeds. The lower setting was great for a single weed, say in between stones or in the soil (ideal for not damaging plants), whereas the higher setting was perfect for removing a good clump of them. Its handle was comfortable and you couldn’t feel the heat at all, and it was simple to put together so as far as we were concerned, ergonomics and ease of use is spot on.

The burner combines 2000W, 230V power to generate the maximum heat it can provide. This heat is enough to light a grill (wouldn’t recommend but not impossible) which goes to show its power. Now this is pretty similar to the other good weed burners out there, so why is this in top spot? Well, to put it simply it’s the most ergonomic, easiest to use and best value burner there is. It gets the job done and for something that generates such a high amount of heat in such a short space of time, is a steal. It also generated the heat quicker than the other burners on this list, and whilst it was only a small difference, it matters. It has a 1.7m cable length which is a little short but not the worst, but as we said you’re going to need an extension anyway. I personally didn’t find any issues with it, maybe aside from the fact it’s a tad heavy, but this is reassuring when it comes to power tools as it usually means there is more power and reliability to it, especially with heated tools.

Overall, this one has the power and physical features you need to comfortably and safely remove weeds. The 2-in-1 light/burn feature is perfect for all lengths of weed in your garden, and it feels robust enough for us to believe it will last a while. Taking these features into account, it would be the weed burner out of this list which I would use as my first choice in the garden and felt the most reliable too, because the others are good but they just don’t quite tick all the boxes for us.

Specification: Voltage: ~230V, Frequency: 50Hz, Power: 2000W, Air Temperature Setting: 60°C/ 650°C ,Cable length: 2M

In our third place spot is the most expensive weed burner on the list, but just because it’s expensive doesn’t mean it disappoints. This is a great burner and for the price it’s even better than that. Quite a few weed burners out there are flimsy or break easily if they’re cheap, but this one seems pretty sturdy and it performed well for us.

At the lower end of the pricing, it has the same specifications as other top burners in this list when directly compared, although I wasn’t convinced it quite reached the same level of heat. It also had a longer cool down time, most probably because it wasn’t designed the same (obviously designed to be cheaper). It also took a bit longer to warm up, but in reality these three aspects were much of an issue, as it still did a solid job at burning down both a patch and a few loose weeds in the garden. It didn’t take long at all to take them down to the point where they won’t grow back.

That’s why it’s our number three spot, because it’s almost half the price as other burners but works just as well despite its time and heat. It’s lightweight and ergonomic too, but because it burns well the lightweight isn’t too much of an issue. We cant guarantee this would last you as long as the others though, so use it sparingly or for loose/small patches of weeds. Since it took a while for it to cool down, excessive use could burn it out.

In terms of its negatives, it has a shorter cable (1.4m) which isn’t the end of the world as long as you have a long adapter, but that’s about it. Like we said we aren’t guaranteed it would last you as long, but it’s certainly got the power to get the job done and it pleased us considering it was half the price! Certainly best for you gardeners who only get out once in a while or that don’t have too many weeds.

Specification: Voltage: ~230V, Frequency: 50Hz, Power: 2000W, Air Temperature Setting: 60°C/ 650°C, Cable length: 1.8M

Next up is another great weed burner, pretty similar to our first place spot and the Draper when compared directly but just more expensive. It has everything you need and actually comes with 3 attachments this time, so it’s the best multipurpose weed burner there is. It costs upper end money and whilst it doesn’t have reviews, its specifications meant we had to try it out and see how it performs.

Safe to say we were impressed, and it performs just like the NASUM burner in the first place. It took a little longer to light up though, despite the same heat generation (650° generated by 2000W/230V power), but still got the job done properly. Its attachments made life easier too, and made removing the different sized weeds a little easier.

As we said, it’s similar to the Draper burner, so we were already impressed and had high hopes. It performed well and felt robust and safe, and it was just (if not more) comfortable, so it was dead easy to use. It did a good job on the weeds and whilst it’s smaller than the Draper burner, it was just as heavy and so it was reassuring in that it makes it feel more reliable and sturdy.

No issues were found with this burner and it’s definitely an option we recommend, it’s just you don’t really get much more compared to the NASUM burner (apart from an extra attachment for thermoplastics) but it’s 20 quid more, so it’s not the best value for money. That said, we were happy and if I wasn’t too fussed about price, I would pick this burner just as much as our number 1 spot.

Specification: Voltage: ~220-240, Frequency: 50Hz, Power: 1600W, Air Temperature Setting: 600°C, Cable length: 1.5M

Whilst this is the most expensive in our list, it’s the best burner out there for those in the more expensive range. It costs £64.65 and is pretty lightweight, but it feels that bit quicker and stronger than other burners in this list, but that’s simply down to price. It’s clearly designed not to be cheap and that has its benefits.

The burner itself burns up to 600°C which might not be as high as the others, but its heat shocks the weeds a lot quicker and feels a lot more efficient. By only working in a few seconds, it should last you too, as you shouldn’t have to have it turned on for a long time for it to work properly. We’d suggest using it for a bit longer than a few seconds, as although this burns the weeds, we are not confident it will stop them from growing back-5-8 seconds will do.

It doesn’t have variable speed settings but this isn’t the end of the world, especially since it works pretty damn quickly. Its cable is around 10ft long too, so whilst you’ll still need an extension cable, you get a bit more manoeuvrability. It got a bit hot after excessive use, but this isn’t uncommon with electric weed burners.

Overall, a great piece of kit and definitely the most efficient and quick working burner in the more expensive range, so if you aren’t worried about splashing the cash, this one’s for you. It’s a lot more ergonomic and easier to use too, but just bear in mind it might be better to burn the weeds for a bit longer and leave it to cool a bit more, as quicker heat generation means it will get excessively hot quicker.

Summary:

Excellent burner and easily the best burner in the more expensive range, and it actually feels a lot quicker and more efficient than its rivals in this list. Quicker heat time was noticeable but we’d recommend burning the weeds for a little bit longer than recommended for maximum effect. Feels a lot more ergonomic and lightweight than other products and is a lot easier to use (much longer cable length), so we’d recommend it if you’re not too worried about price.

Specification: Voltage: ~110V, Frequency: 50Hz, Power: 2000W, Air Temperature Setting: 60℃ / 650°C , Cable length: 1.8 M

In our final spot is a burner which we thought is pretty similar to the others, and is just as reliable and efficient as the others in this list, but it just doesn’t offer anything extra to bring it up the list. It has 5 different attachments which is pretty useful, but they can be a little flimsy and don’t concentrate the flame as much as we’d like.

This isn’t the worst thing though, because you’re not paying that much extra for them compared to other products in this list and also the weed burner attachment works perfectly. It’s only 110V but has 2000W of power, and you don’t really notice the difference when compared to other burners. It has two variable heat settings so you have that extra control and it’s ergonomic enough for us to be happy. It has a 3M cable so it’s a bit longer than the others, but an extension would still be ideal. Also it’s easy to use and feels robust, so there’s very little to complain about really.

Being perfectly honest the additional parts that make it multipurpose do come in handy, they just aren’t the most efficient. Either way, alongside the decent performance, we’re still going to say this is the best for multipurpose burning.

The only thing we would say is that it suggests to power it down to the first setting first and gradually let it cool down and then turn off, which is a little tedious and a bit irritating. Either way, it has what you need and deserves to be on this list as a reliable burner, but it just isn’t really offering anything more than what’s above this sixth place spot yet is the same price. Still highly recommended!

Summary:

Another reliable weed burner and has everything you need, but it’s a similar price to other burners in this list and doesn’t offer much more. It does a grand job but it’s actually got less power too, and also requires a fair bit of cool down, so it can be a bit of an annoyance to use because of this. Either way, it’s ergonomic and is a great burner, it’s just lacking a little bit compared to others in this list considering it’s a similar price.

Potential problems with electric weed burners and what you need to lookout for

Weed burners are pretty simple and most products are relatively similar, but there are still a few things you need to keep in mind when buying to avoid problems down the line. They all look similar and you’ll know one when you see one, but just keep in mind the things below and we’re sure you’ll get the right one for you!

You’ll need to consider electric weed killers require a huge amount of electric and that means a power lead. So you’ll only get the chance to use one if you’re prepared to use an extension reel. This means only really using it in dry weather as electric and the wet don’t mix so just bear that in mind too but with that said, you can only use chemical weed killers in the wet too.

Heat generation and time

Probably the most important aspect of any burning tool is its heat generation, for pretty obvious reasons. With weed burners, most spec’s state they can heat up to 650°C or just below that, which is obviously hot enough to burn your weeds down. This sounds great, but make sure to look deeper into the specs or into the reviews for its generation time.

The reason I say this is because that’s quite a high temperature, and as you can imagine, some burners can take a while to get to that point. This isn’t a major issue in itself, but the longer it takes to heat up (and cool down for that matter) the longer the burner is heated, which can actually increase its chance of breaking over time. Now this isnt always the case, but with most weed burners excessive use or retaining heat for a long time will reduce its reliability.

Ideally, get a burner which has the right specs (typically 2000W/230-50V) but which has a short generation time. You might need to pay slightly more for this, but it’s worth it.

Ergonomics

A pretty obvious one here but for weed burners I felt it was a really important aspect. It’s important that the handle is comfortable and feels good in the hand, but it’s also useful if it’s made from some form of plastic or thermopolymer which doesn’t conduct heat well. As you can imagine 600-650°C is quite hot, so after a while this heat can easily transfer up to the handle and it needs to be the case that the handle resists this. Most burners do, but some products I’ve come across have reviews stating the handle heats up and it’s those products that have cheap or flimsy plastic handles-so just watch out.

Oh, and an adjustable handle is always ideal, makes it a lot easier to manoeuvre to say the least!

Variable heat settings

As already mentioned heat is the most important part of a weed burner, but having variable speed settings offers way more control than without and actually makes a difference to the weeds too. From the burners we tried above, the ones with variable speed settings were probably the most useful, as they typically had two settings (60°C low heat and 650°C high heat) which might seem huge in terms of difference, but it really came in handy. The lower heat allowed for a light burn of the weeds and were good for really small weeds/roots, whereas the higher heat obviously provided the power needed for most weeds out there. It was good to use the lower setting first too and then go higher, as it gave the weeds a good shock before really burning them down.

Variable heat isn’t exactly a necessity, but it was a really useful feature and since most weed burners have them, we strongly suggest picking one with variable heat settings.

Those are what we thought were the three main aspects to consider when buying an electric weed burner, so make sure to keep them in mind. Alongside the products above you should be set to buy, but just make sure you own an extension lead before you buy!

What is an electric weed killer?  

Well they look quite similar to hedge trimmers, in that they’re a long power tool which are connected to the mains. No current cordless electric weed killers exist or are prominent on the market unfortunately, so whatever product you’re going to get, chances are you’ll need an extension lead. The reason for this is because the electric weed killer needs to generate plenty of heat in quite a short time, with most products going up to 600° minimum, and so cordless just doesn’t quite cut it.

Their function is simple, it just generates enough heat to burn/heat shock the weeds to death and to destroy their cellular structure so that they don’t grow back. You couldn’t use one instead of a herbicide though, as the energy requirements are huge, but that’s why they’re perfect for removing some weeds or for tidying them up. As said above you could just do it yourself on your hands and knees, but this will only remove the weeds and not stop them growing back, so electric weed killers are a win-win really.

electric weed burner saves on the knees

They typically have a couple of heat settings and require a fair bit of power to get it heated up, which does mean that you can experience difficulties with them. By this, I mean that using it for too long/consistently for a long time could damage the element, so it needs to be used sparingly. This was worrying at first as lots of reviews talked about them breaking after a while, but after a good look and some reading, it was clear that most people just used it for way too long and so it’s no wonder they damaged it. Point is, use your electric weed killer sparingly and only use it on loose weeds, as it really shouldn’t take long to burn them and you’ll damage it if not. I had no issues when we used it properly, so we’re confident you won’t either.

Conclusion

Weeds not only do they look nasty, but they can really affect the growth of any other plants you’ve got growing in your garden. That said, it’s not impossible to keep them away, and this is where an electric weed burner comes in. For years I’ve typically used Glyphosate to keep them away, but it doesn’t always work 100% and I’ve still found some on the drive and in-between paving slabs in the back. Obviously we can get down on our hands and knees and pluck them out, but who could be bothered?

 

hence its fifth place spot, but it just lacks a couple of features that make it the top list. Don’t get us wrong it’s still a great burner and it ticked all the boxes for us, it just isn’t quite the best there is.


About Terry Smith

I’m Terry Smith from gardentoolbox.co.uk, a professional landscape designer, hobbyist gardener, and barbecue fanatic with 20 years experience building and restoring. So as you go through my site you'll watch me document some of the professional garden installs I make as well as the major projects I take on at home. While sharing those experiences and guiding you, I'll be recommending some great tools I use to enable this along the way so you can really buy in confidence. Always feel free to pop me a message: info@gardentoolbox.co.uk

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