Best Wood Chippers & Buying Guide

Best Wood Chippers featured photo

Spring has sprung and that means it is time to get your yard in shape! One of the best ways to do that is by using a wood chipper to turn unwanted branches and leaves into mulch. Not sure which wood chipper is right for you? Keep reading for our buying guide, as well as reviews of some of the best wood chippers on the market.

We spent hours researching the best wood chippers available online for this article. Below is a quick overview of the best ones we found. 

If you’d like a more in depth review, please feel free to read through our review section and stop by our buying guide while you’re there. Enjoy!

Note: The products in this article are not industrial grade and PTO wood chippers.

Best Wood Chippers for Your Yard

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Dimensions: 29.5 x 25.7 x 40.6 inches
  • Weight: ‎120.7 pounds
  • Power Source: Gas Powered
View On Amazon →Read Our Review
  • Dimensions: 37.8 x 32.1 x 47.9 inches
  • Weight: 101.2 pounds
  • Power Source: Gas Powered
View On Amazon →Read Our Review
  • Dimensions: 35 x 24 x 37 inches
  • Weight: 95 pounds
  • Power Source: Corded-electric
View On Amazon →Read Our Review
  • Dimensions:
  • Weight: 33 pounds
  • Power Source: Corded-electric
View On Amazon →Read Our Review

Table of Contents

TopicPage
Intro2
Wood Chipper Buying Guide
– Kinds of Wood Chipper
– Gas vs Electric
– Wood Chipper Features
– Maintenance & Safety Tips


3 – 6
Best Wood Chipper Reviews
– Best Overall Wood Chipper
• SuperHandy ‎GUO019-FBA-TR
– 2nd Best Wood Chipper
• EFCUT C30
– Best Electric Powered Wood Chipper
• Patriot Products CSV-2515
– Best Compact Wood Chipper
• PowerSmart PS10



7 – 10
Bonus Products 11
FAQs12
Conclusion12

Quick Introduction to Wood Chippers

There’s something oddly satisfying about using a wood chipper to turn sticks and leaves into blended bits and pieces. Besides being therapeutic, a wood chipper is also a great way to clean your lawn from fallen leaves and branches. 

Wood chippers generally work by having the tree limb fed into a feed chute and started into the chipping mechanism. The chips then exit through another chute which can be directed into a collection bag, a bin or any other appropriate container. 

Industrial grade wood chippers are powerful enough to shred whole tree trunks into wood chips. There are smaller versions of wood chippers that are often used in farms and there are even smaller variants for the average homeowner. 

In this article, we’ll be going over the basics of a wood chipper and the best models we’ve found available online. For the sake of this article, we won’t include any industrial grade or large form wood chippers such as a PTO wood chipper as these are rarely available online and the price ranges for such machines do not fit our current demographic.

Wood Chipper Buying Guide

Kinds of Wood Chipper

Other than engine size, the main method of categorizing a wood chipper is through the mechanism it uses to shred wood. Here are the two most common methods.

Disc Mechanism

Disc Mechanism

The original wood chipper design uses a steel disc with blades mounted on it as a chipping mechanism. The disc would have flanges on its edge that would fling the wood chips out the other chute. This design is the most   (replacement image needed) common among smaller models.

Drum Mechanism

Drum Mechanism

Drum chippers use mechanisms consisting of a large steel drum powered by a motor. The drum is mounted parallel to the hopper and spins toward the chute. Blades mounted to the outer surface of the drum cut the material into chips and propel the chips into the discharge chute. The number of blades influences the size of the chips. This mechanism is less common on smaller models although these are one of the most common among commercial wood chippers.

Other Wood Chipper Type

Other

There are wood chippers that use both or some variations of these two mechanisms. Industrial wood chippers also called “Whole tree chippers” and “Recyclers” which often handle material over 5 ft in diameter may use both drums and disks to get the desired outcome. Other large machines used in wood processing often called “Tub or Horizontal Grinders” may use a carbide tipped flail hammer to pulverize wood. This produces a shredded   result rather than chipped. 

Smaller Electric Wood Chipper

Some smaller electric wood chippers use a mechanism similar to that of a blender to shred small branches, leaves and other garden debris. This is the smallest mechanism on the market, the cheapest and the weakest in terms of cutting power.

Gas vs Electric models

Gas models were the staple for decades but with the advancements in technology, electric wood chippers have now become an important part of the industry and even have their own niche in the market.

There are clear advantages and disadvantages to both gas or electric powered wood chippers, the most obvious one being raw power. 

Gas powered wood chippers are powerhouses that can shred as many branches and leaves as you can feed them. Gas engines are more powerful, ruggedly built and reliable than electric motors. They can take larger diameter branches depending on the mechanism and struggle less with hardwoods. Gas powered wood chippers are most commonly used for farms, forestry and other tasks that require heavy duty wood chipping. Used by professionals, these are often the best wood chippers.

The downsides of a gas powered chipper are that they’re much louder, heavier, exude harmful fumes and oftentimes more expensive.  

Electric chippers on the other hand have their advantages elsewhere. Electric wood chippers have lower sound ratings, are lighter, are practically maintenance free and are more user and environmentally friendly. This makes them great for the homeowners and residential landscapers in more suburban settings. Their motor size is significantly smaller than gas engines thus electric wood chippers are smaller in profile. There are even compact models available. 

They do have some disadvantages to consider however, as electric wood chippers have the short end of the stick in terms of raw power and the size of branches capable of being put through. This limits their effectiveness greatly. 

Important Wood Chipper Features 

Reduction Ratio

This is an important factor to take into account before buying any wood chipper. The reduction ratio refers to the size of the material that you can expect after it goes through the wood chipper. In other terms, the size of the wood chips in comparison to its original size. 

For example, a 10:1 reduction ratio means that the chipper processes the garden waste down to 1/10th of its original size.

Most small and residential wood chippers have a reduction ratio of 10:1 to 20:1.

Cutting Blades 

Cutting Blades 

Depending on the mechanism on your wood chipper, it can have anywhere from 3 to 6 blades and sometimes more. 

Before you buy a wood chipper, it’s important to note that some manufacturers sell replacement blades. Most of these blades are brands specific and differ per model but it is worth looking into.

Cutting Capacity

The cutting capacity of a wood chipper refers to the maximum size of a branch that’ll fit into its feed chute. This important factor depends largely on engine size and the kind of mechanism. 

Whether you need larger cutting capacities though depends on the type of trees you have on your property, the amount of leaves and other organic debris you want thrown in there. It’s important to know what you’re dealing with first so you can choose a wood chipper with the appropriate cutting capacity.

Most smaller or residential wood chippers have a cutting capacity of 1.6 to 3 inches. This is enough for most twigs and branches you’ll find in your yard including any leaves you want shredded as well.

Outfeed Bag for Wood Chipper

Outfeed Bag

Wood chippers can spew the wood chips at quite the distance at an impressive rate. Chances are though, you don’t want the wood chips to be expelled all over your yard. So, it’s best to be prepared for this now rather than when you first turn on your wood chipper. 

You have the option of putting the wood chips in a bin or a container. Some brands do sell an outfeed bag together with the wood chipper as an add on. An outfeed bag is a large container usually made of cloth or some sort of fiber. These contain the spray of wood chips flying out of the chipper and make the whole process cleaner. 

It should be noted that these can get quite heavy when full so it’s a good idea to have a plan in place as to what you want to do with the wood chips and how to move it. We would recommend getting a friend to help.

Maintenance & Safety Tips

Wood chippers can be dangerous, even fatal when used incorrectly and have a bad track record of accidents in workplaces. It’s important to know the basic dos and don’ts of these machines before you operate one so we put together a few that you can use.

  • Get familiar with your wood chipper. Reading the user manual and any accompanying video instructions will help you to understand how the wood chipper works and some features you may have missed.
  • Always feed the appropriately sized branches into your wood chipper to avoid jamming.
  • Make sure to look out for stones, metals, or other hard objects. Things like these can quickly and easily jam the machine, or worse, shoot back out at you.
  • Never under any circumstances use your hand to push wood into the feed area.If a branch gets stuck and needs a push, use a push paddle or a long enough branch that will give you leverage you need while keeping your hands a safe distance from the feed wheels.
  • Position yourself to one side of the machine to avoid being injured by any material that is kicked back. Staying on the side with the controls will ensure you have easy access to shut off the chipper in an emergency.
  • Wood chippers, especially gas powered ones, can be very loud when in operation and spew out debris at high speeds. It is essential that you wear the appropriate PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) such as gloves, ear protection, slip resistant shoes, safety goggles and even a mask. 
  • Inspect the wood chipper each time before and after use. Check for defects  such as broken or missing hood latches and pins or cracked and worn hinges.
  • After use, store in a dry place away from moisture and direct sunlight.

Best Wood Chipper Reviews

Best Overall Wood Chipper

SuperHandy ‎GUO019 Gas Powered Chipper Shredder

SuperHandy ‎GUO019 Gas Powered Chipper Shredder

Specifications:
  • 7HP, 4 stroke engine
  • Reduction ratio: 15:1
  • Cutting capacity: 3 inches in diameter
  • .7 gallon gas tank
  • 120.7 lbs
Features:
  • 3 in 1 functionality
  • Outfeed bag included

Vacuum inlet kit compatible

SuperHandy ‎GUO019 Gas Powered Chipper Shredder Parts
Overview:

This wood chipper from SuperHandy offers great value for its price tag. 

This wood whipper can cut branches and limbs upto 1/2 an inch thick in its top chute and 3 inches thick in the side chute. It features a capable 7HP engine that’s strong enough for most branches. Its unique disc cutter features two replaceable blades and four cutting hammers making it capable of shredding, chipping and mulching with a reduction ratio of 15:1. 

It’s designed to be portable despite its weight and features heavy duty polyurethane wheels and a handlebar for better maneuverability. It also comes with its own nylon outfeed catch bag for easy and mess free chipping

All these features at a reasonable price make it a great pick for groundskeeping service providers or homeowners with lots of trees on their property. 

Check out the SuperHandy ‎GUO019-FBA-TR here:

2nd Best Wood Chipper

EFCUT C30 Gas Powered Chipper Shredder

EFCUT C30 Gas Powered Chipper Shredder

Specifications: 
  • 7HP, 212cc engine
  • Reduction ratio: 20:1 
  • Cutting capacity: 3 inches in diameter
  • 114 lbs
Features:
  • Replaceable blades
  • Unique 2 check windows
  • 2 year warranty
EFCUT C30 Gas Powered Chipper Shredder Cutting System
Overview:

This more compact wood chipper does a great job at providing powerful cuts with a high reduction ratio while still being maneuverable and easy to use.

The EFCUT C30 wood chipper has features expected of a modern wood chipper but has an innovative steel cutting system consisting of 2 replaceable blades and 6 cutting hammers. This makes it efficient at chipping, mulching and shredding any number of branches and leaves. 

It has a nice reduction ratio of 20:1 and a maximum cutting capacity of 3 inches. It comes with 2 maintenance windows that allow the user easier access to the blades and clearing the machine of any blockage. 

 EFCUT makes their wood chippers with the latest technology in wood chipping design and the C30 is another great addition to their line. 

Check out the EFCUT C30 here:

Best Electric Models

Patriot Products CSV-2515 Electric Wood Chipper

Patriot Products CSV-2515 Electric Wood Chipper

Specifications:
  • 14 amp motor
  • Reduction ratio: 20:1
  • Cutting capacity: 2 ½ inches inches in diameter
  • 95 lbs
Features: 
  • No fumes
  • Quieter operation
  • Maintenance free
  • Outfeed bag included
  • Safety goggles included
  • 2 year warranty        
Overview:

This electric wood chipper from Patriot Products is easy to maintain and provides a high reduction ratio and decent cutting capacity.

Being electric, this wood chipper does not exude harmful fumes, is low maintenance and is great for homeowners or landscapers in suburban settings because of its lower sound profile. Its 14 amp motor shreds through material up to 2.5 inches thick. It features a side chute for branches while the top chute can be used for smaller twigs or leaves. The shredded debris is ejected out the side of the machine and into the accompanying outfeed collection bag. It also comes with safety goggles. A 100 ft extension cord is highly recommended and is available for this product but sold separately. 

At 95 lbs, this is as close as you’ll get to a medium sized electric wood chipper. This makes it more maneuverable though and is great for small to medium sized lots with a decent amount of leaves and branches that need to be chipped. 

It’s high price tag does turn away a lot of potential buyers but we believe the benefits are well worth it.

Check out the Patriot Products CSV-2515 here:

Best Compact Wood Chipper

PowerSmart PS10 Electric Wood Chipper

PowerSmart PS10 Electric Wood Chipper

Specifications:
  • 15 amp brushless induction motor
  • Cutting capacity: 1.63 inches in diameter
  • Reduction ratio: 17:1
  • 33 lbs
Features:
  • Quick start feature
  • User friendly
  • Overload protection 
  • 2 year warranty
PowerSmart PS10 Electric Wood Chipper Parts
Overview:

This wood chipper from PowerSmart is a great choice for the average homeowner looking for a quiet and reliable tool to get rid of branches or twigs lying around the yard.

The Powersmart PS10 features a 15 amp brushless motor with long machine life capable of shredding small branches upto 1.63 inches in diameter with a reduction ratio of 17:1. It’s ideal for turning lawn clippings, branches, small twigs and other garden refuse into high-grade nutrient-rich mulch or wood chips for pathways. 

The PS10 is lightweight at just above 30 lbs and highly maneuverable because of its wheels. It features overload protection and an easy to access safety switch. To maximize safety, the lockable knob for the hopper helps prevent the motor from operating while opened.

Being electric, it is low maintenance, silent running, user and environmentally safe. The PS10 is definitely built with the homeowner in mind and PowerSmart backs this product with a 2 year warranty.

Check out the PowerSmart PS10 here:

Bonus Products

Here are a couple of wood chippers and shredders that didn’t quite make our list but we thought you might want to check out nonetheless.

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Dimensions: 85 x 37 x 48 inches
  • Weight: 395 pounds
  • Power Source: Gas Powered
View On Amazon →Read Our Review
  • Dimensions: 8 x 15 x 31 inches
  • Weight: 38.6 pounds
  • Power Source: Corded-electric
View On Amazon →Read Our Review
  • Dimensions: 30 x 24.1 x 41.6 inches
  • Weight: 125.7 pounds
  • Power Source: Gas Powered
View On Amazon →Read Our Review

FAQs

Q: What is the difference between a mulcher, chipper and shredder?

A: The main difference between these three is the outcome of the material. Mulch is a general term for a layer of material applied to the surface of soil. Mulch can be made out of shredded leaves and other plant matter. A chipper on the other hand uses blades to “chip” away at wooden branches and limbs at fast speeds. A shredder uses cutting hammers that crush the branches giving a shredded outcome. 

Different Outcome of Shredded Woods

Modern wood chippers have 3 in 1 functionality that allows for different outcomes.

Q: What can you do with the leftover material?

A: The shredded material is often used by landscapers and homeowners to line gardens, make pathways, for play gardens and driveways.

The leftover material is rich in nutrients and is generally good for the health of the garden. Some people even use the leftover material as a fire break

Q: What can you do with the leftover material?

A: The shredded material is often used by landscapers and homeowners to line gardens, make pathways, for play gardens and driveways. (replacement image needed)

The leftover material is rich in nutrients and is generally good for the health of the garden. Some people even use the leftover material as a fire break.

Q: How loud is a wood chipper?

A: Wood chippers are quite loud. Gas powered models have decibel levels between 85 and 110 decibels. Electric models tend to be on the quieter side but not enough to warrant not wearing hearing protection.

Conclusion:

And there we have it, everything you might need to know about the best wood chippers. When used correctly, wood chippers can be very useful in repurposing raw material into mulch or for other uses. 

We hope that this article has helped you make a decision as to which wood chipper is best for you. Thank you!

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