Leaf blowers turn a messy garden chore into something much faster and much more fun. And if your blower also has a vacuum, you simply suck up leaves, fallen blossom and twigs as if you were vacuuming your garden.
There’s a wide variety of leaf blowers out there, and they differ in more than just price: some are quieter than others, and some are more powerful or have better batteries. In this guide, we’ll discover what features you should look for and which models are likely to be the best buys for you.
What to look for in a leaf blower
All leaf blowers work in the same way: they have a powerful fan that blows leaves into a pile. But they vary in power from super lightweight models to the heavy-duty ones used to clean leaves from city streets. The more power, the faster the job.
Let’s face it, you don’t need a massive leaf blower if you’ve only got a small garden or driveway to clear. But it’s important to get a blower that’s powerful enough, or you’ll feel like you’re only threatening the leaves rather than moving them.
The best leaf blower to buy today
1. WORX 3000W Trivac Garden Leaf Blower, Mulcher and Vacuum
If you need a leaf blower that shifts debris, vacuums up leaves and mulches leaves for composting or ground cover, this is the blower for you. This multi-functional, mains-powered model has a powerful 3,000W motor that can blow away debris at up to 335km/h, and it can also vacuum dry leaves into its leaf bag at speeds of up to 63 litres per minute. It’s a mulcher, too, with a metal impeller delivering a mulch ratio of 16:1. While it’s powerful it’s not heavy: it’s been designed for one-handed use and despite its large motor it only weighs 4.4kg.
2. Bosch ALB18 Li
This is a great option for smaller spaces and its battery is compatible with Bosch’s other garden tools such as the EasyGrassCut strimmer. It’s compact, lightweight and its blower tube is removable for easier storage. Because it only weighs 1.8kg it’s ideal for those of us who’d rather not dislocate our shoulders when we’re clearing up the driveway and while its 18V battery isn’t the most powerful it’s still good for speeds of 210km/h for up to 17 minutes. The long, thin nozzle can get into awkward spaces with ease, and the ability to re-use the battery can save you a bit of cash when you’re buying other power tools for the garden.
3. Black & Decker GW3031BP
This isn’t Black & Decker’s cheapest leaf blower, but it’s the most powerful: it’s designed for bigger spaces and stubborn, wet debris. There’s a 3,000W motor delivering a blow speed of 418km/h, a shredder/mulcher with a 16:1 ratio so there’s less emptying, and a 72L bag to store lots of leaves. According to Black & Decker it’s 40% more powerful, has 30% more suction power and has 85% more capacity than its predecessor. That capacity does have a downside, though: when the bag is full it’s heavy. Like the Workx Trivac the Black & Decker needs mains power to drive its big motor, and it weighs 4.4kg.
4. Garden Gear Leaf Blower, Vacuum and Shredder
If you’re looking for a powerful, multi-function leaf blower but don’t want to spend £100 or more, this is a decent budget buy. The motor here is more powerful than rivals but less efficient, so the air power here is 270km/h despite the motor being 3,500W rather than the more common 3,000. In addition to blowing the Garden Gear can vacuum and mulch with a ratio of 10:1, and the collection bag has room for 45l. The build quality isn’t up to the standards of more expensive rivals – on Amazon, some users warn that the collection bag isn’t particularly sturdy – and you can expect more vibration.
5. Bosch Home and Garden Universal Garden Tidy
This Bosch is one of the quietest models on the market, with Bosch’s ProSilence design reducing noise levels by up to 75% to deliver a sound level of 99dB(A); some blowers can exceed 112dB. That’s a big difference.
The Bosch is another corded 3-in-1, with variable airflow of up to 285km/h, a vacuum tube, a shredder with a 12:1 mulching ratio and a 50 litre bag with “dirt deflectors” to make it easier to empty. It’s 3.4kg in blower mode and 4.7 as a vacuum, and because its corded you don’t need to worry about running out of power when you’re halfway through the job.
6. Hyundai 3 in 1 3000W Electric Leaf Blower
Yes, it’s another corded 3-in-1. This one sits between the Garden Gear and the Worx models in terms of price and performance, but it’s interestingly different too: its chute is on wheels and it’s telescopic, with nine different height positions and anti-vibration design to reduce the toll on your hands. It also comes fully assembled. You’ll be glad of the wheels if you’re using it to vacuum and shred, as the 45L bag will be quite heavy when it fills up. The motor here is 3,000W and it blows at up to 299km/h, and the shredder mulches leaves at a ratio of 10:1.
7. WORX WG518E Turbine
With a 10m cable, four function settings and a 2,500W motor delivering an air speed of up to 177km/h this is a good option if all you want is a straightforward and lightweight leaf blower, and at just 2.8kg it’s not going to hurt your arms during longer clearing sessions. It’s much quieter than a petrol blower, and of course it’s fume-free because it’s electric. The benefit here is that it’s really straightforward: there’s nothing you need to fiddle with and no need to swap out components. All you need to do is plug it in and switch it on.
8. Spear & Jackson Cordless Garden Vac and Blower 36V
If you’d like the convenience of a 3-in-1 blower, shredder and vacuum but don’t want to be tied down by a cable, this excellent cordless blower and vac from Spear & Jackson is a great option. The twin 18V battery setup is very powerful, and while it can’t deliver the airspeed of a corded model it still manages a very respectable 190km/h. The fast charger takes two batteries at a time and the 45L collection bag unzips at the bottom for easy emptying, and like the Hyundai there are wheels to make it easy to move around.