For many people, it’s time to start tidying up the yard, and that means time to break out the trusty old garden rake.
The best rake for most people is the Fiskars Leaf Rake thanks to its durable design and ability to grab lots of leaves in one swipe.

If it’s time to start tidying up the yard, then it’s time to get that rake ready. I love raking. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that it is my all-time favorite household chore. The reasons why are simple: I get to be outdoors, I get a good workout because raking burns approximately 350-450 calories per hour, and it’s a chore with an identifiable beginning and end. (For the very same reasons, I’m passionate about shoveling, too.) 

But how do you choose the best rake to handle fallen leaves, garden debris, and other garden tasks? We’ve done the research to find the best rakes you can buy. Here are a few things to think about when you are deciding on which rake to buy:

Durability: Cheap plastic rakes are meant to be disposable. It’s common for them to break by the end of the season. But a good rake should last decades. That’s why you should look for a rake with a hardwood handle, as well as metal tines that are attached with a spring metal hinge.
Handles: Hardwood handles are best because metal handles tend to bend or warp with heavy use, especially over time. Metal is also a valid second option as it will last a lifetime and has very little impact on the environment. However, if you live in a colder climate, you may opt to avoid metal rakes as they can be uncomfortable to handle in chilly weather without gloves. I highly suggest avoiding plastic handles. They are typically not re-useable, can become brittle and break, and take thousands of years to decompose.
Tines: Metal tines are important for many reasons. First, unless they become rusted from poor care or storage, they will last you a lifetime or longer. Second, they provide the appropriate amount of flex and strength necessary for leaves, small twigs, and debris. Plastic tines often break under the same pressure or fail to provide enough flexibility to be of use for the gardener.
Comfort: Raking can be taxing on muscles. When it comes to rakes, bigger doesn’t mean better. It’s important for the rake’s dimensions to be comfortable and have good ergonomics for the user. Ideally, each family member should have their own rake. If this isn’t doable, find a lightweight rake with an adjustable handle and perhaps even adjustable tines.

To save you some time and energy, we’ve rounded up the best rakes you can buy to pick up leaves and perform other garden tasks. Read on to see which rake is best for your needs.

Here are our top picks for the best rakes:

Best overall: Fiskars Leaf Rake
Best adjustable rake: Gardenite 63-inch Adjustable Garden Leaf Rake
Best leaf scoops: ReLeaf Leaf Scoops
Best bow rake: Bully Tools Bow Rake
Best small rake: Corona RK 62060 Fixed Shrub Rake

Prices and links are accurate as of 6/2/20.

The best overall
Fiskars

Durable curved tines, a 24-inch wide head, and an extra-long aluminum handle ensure that the Fiskars Leaf Rake will get your yard cleared up in record time.

The Fiskars Leaf Rake features a patented design with curved tines to more easily grab leaves. The 24-inch wide head also makes it simple to transport large quantities of leaves quickly and easily. The durable resin tines are designed to bend without breaking, so they’ll stand up to heavy use year after year. 

This tool will not only cut down your raking time, but it’s built for comfort, too. The extra-long and durable aluminum handle measures 67 inches to help you avoid back strain. The length and the lightweight design makes it easy to maneuver without bending or adding extra stress. The teardrop-shaped shaft also provides extra comfort and control.

The Fiskars Leaf Rake comes with a lifetime warranty, so if anything should go wrong, you’re covered.

Pros: Affordable, specially-patented curved tines pick up more leaves, built for comfort, extra-long handle with cushion, lightweight

Cons: The tines have been known to break easily

The best adjustable rake
Gardenite

Clear every space in your garden with the versatile, comfortable, and adjustable Gardenite 63-inch Adjustable Garden Leaf Rake.

Gardenite’s rake is a popular lightweight and easy-to-use tool that takes the cake in terms of versatility. Designed to reach smaller areas that are difficult for conventional rakes to access, the 15 flat tine head expands from 7 inches up to 22 inches. The adjustable head is a major benefit, though it can be difficult to actually adjust.

The long 63-inch handle allows you to easily cover more ground quickly. The ¾ inch zinc-plated steel handle is also made to withstand rust. However, this rake is not designed for rocks and other heavy materials, though.

Gardenite offers a 100% Customer Satisfaction Guarantee, with a promise to fix any problem you may have with your rake over time.

Pros: Adjustable tines make reaching small spaces easy, lightweight, durable, rust-resistant handle

Cons: It can be difficult to adjust the size of the head and the handle isn’t as comfortable as other options

The best leaf scoops
ReLeaf

The versatile and unique ReLeaf Leaf Scoops combine the tines of a rake and the shape of gardening gloves to help you complete all your gardening chores.

Who couldn’t use an extra pair of hands? Part rake/part hand scoops, these popular Leaf Scoops get your yard work wrapped up quickly and efficiently, whether your leaves and grass are wet or dry. The one-size-fits-all, plastic scoops are excellent for transporting and spreading compost and mulch, too. The closed scoop design keeps small items from slipping out.

The lightweight scoops are easy to store — simply fit them together and hang them up. The Leaf Scoops are covered by a 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed Lifetime Guarantee.

Sized to fit all yard bags and trash cans, the closed scoop design keeps small items from slipping out. You can use one as a rake to gather stray leaves to stack for easy bagging or mulching, which can help cut down on the time it takes to gather leaves and finish gardening projects.

Pros: One-size-fits-all, closed scoop design, cuts down on leaf gathering time

Cons: The scoopers can be clunky and difficult to manage

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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