Aeration is also a great way to improve poor soil conditions, such as compacted clay soils. Aerators are a great way to get your lawn in shape. This will help your lawn thrive in the long term.
They work by pulling the device over your turf and spinning at high speeds, turning it into a fine mist of water droplets that seeps deep into the ground. This helps to reduce runoff and improve overall soil quality.
Spike Aerators are the most common type of garden tool. They have hollow tines that put holes in your dirt when pulled behind your mower, allowing air to get into the soil.
Plug Aeration is best for lawns with high organic material i.e grass, leaves, and other bits. This is because the soil can be easily compacted by machines or animals that walk on your lawn (think of a dog’s footprints sinking into wet turf). Therefore, you need to aerate it more often than clay soils for optimal results.
If you are planning on doing both types of Aeration this season, it is best to start with Spike Aeration and then do Plug Aeration.
Best Pull Behind Aerators
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Strongway Spike Aerator
Ohio Steel 48CP
01. Agri-Fab 45-0518 40″ Tow Plug Aerator
The Agri-Fab 45-0492 is a great, durable pull-behind aerator that can be used for your lawn or garden. With its 40 inches, wide working width and 24 galvanized coring knives this machine does an excellent job at breaking up soil and allowing moisture to get in the ground rather than staying on top of the ground. This aerator can reduce soil compaction, increase water infiltration and optimize nutrient distribution. This is the best pull-behind aerator for home use because it weighs 79 pounds at maximum capacity so you won’t have any problems maneuvering this on your own.
This machine also has flat-proof transport tires which are great for when you need to move this around the yard but still want it securely in place while aerating. The single lever transport handle can fold down and become a part of your storage arsenal saving room on the sides of your shed or garage.
At last, with its weight tray, you can see just how much weight you are adding to the machine. This helps with getting your lawn aerated perfectly every time. Also, this machine comes with a three-year warranty.
02. Brinly PA-40BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator
The Brinly PA-40BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator is a heavy-duty aeration machine that you can use with ease.
It has an extra-large steel drum and it delivers faster plug removal than other machines in the market. This pull-behind aerator has sturdy tires for additional support and it is made of high-quality steel that will give you years of great performance.
This machine weighs 64 pounds, so it isn’t too heavy to handle even when fully loaded with plugs. The drum diameter on this pull behind the aerator measures 40 inches wide which makes plug removal quick and easy. It looks very similar to the Agri-Fab 45-0492 model but it is better built and will provide great performance for years. It has a thick metal axle that supports bigger tires which contribute to its stability when working on tough ground conditions. You also get two handlebars on the front axle that can be used to steer it.
The Brinly PA-40BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator has an impressive weight capacity of up to 1000 pounds which makes it a great option for heavy-duty work.
03. Strongway Spike Aerator
This is a really popular model because it has adjustable tines and can be attached to your lawnmower or ATV very easily (pin-style hitch). The durable powder coat finish ensures that this aerator will last for years.
This ten-wheeled spike aerator is a useful and effective tool to use when you want an area of your yard fertilized. It has eight-inch diameter wheels that work together with the spikes to penetrate up to two inches deep into the soil, loosening it and making room for plant growth.
It has adjustable tines, so you can choose how deep to penetrate the soil. A heavy-duty steel frame with rubber wheels makes this aerator stable and easy to use. The only downside of this aerator, in comparison to some other products on the market, is that it can be a pain sometimes to assemble and you need at least two people to do so. Other than that it’s perfect for anyone looking for an affordable solution with good quality!
Strongway Spike Aerator is a great product that you can use on all types of lawns. It is not too expensive, it has good quality, and more importantly, the owners are very satisfied with their purchase.
04. Ohio Steel 48CP Pro Spring Activated Core Plugger
It is a great choice for you. For one thing, it has an affordable price and this aerator will do the job just fine. It comes with a 48″ wide solid steel frame that can be used by any person in your household or farm. When it comes to weight, it is very light and easy to assemble.
It weighs 120 pounds and it can be used by anyone. This is a great thing as you do not have to wait for someone to assemble it or disassemble the unit after use. This product has been made from 100% recycled steel, so if you are looking for something eco-friendly and sturdy at the same time, this one should be your first choice. The height of the handle also adjusts, which is another thing that makes this pull behind the aerator very user-friendly.
It is manufactured in the United States, and it comes with adjustable height handles that are very convenient to use. This product can be used on any soil type and it will do the job properly every time you use it. It is also very easy to operate, so if you are new in this industry, don’t worry as everything has been taken care of for you. The aerator has been made from durable steel and it can be used for years to come. It also comes with a telescopic handle that makes the stone removing process easy and fast.
The Pro Pull Aerator by Ohio Steel is a great choice for you, especially if what you are looking for in an aerator are durability and affordability.
05. Brinly AS-40BH Tow Behind Combination Aerator Spreader
Brinly products are designed to save you time and money. This combination aerator spreader is simple to use with its push-button operation system which allows for easy on/off of the tines.
The aerator and spreader need to be assembled after purchase, but the directions are easy to follow. This aerator has a weight of 68 pounds which makes it ideal for large lawn areas. The rear tires make maneuvering easier due to their pneumatic design while its push-button operation offers added convenience. To ensure your safety when using this product, a safety flag is included.
This aerating machine works great on lawns that have been compacted from foot traffic or heavy equipment which can damage your grass root system and cause weeds to grow in place of the damaged grass. It is also designed to be used with Brinly attachments such as a dethatcher or lawn sweeper.
Brinly products are known for their quality and durability which is why they come backed by a one-year warranty.
06. Craftsman CMXGZBF7124213 40-Inch Tow Plug Aerator
The Craftsman CMXGZBF7124213 Tow Plug Aerator, Red is a machine that is designed for aerating lawns. This product provides turf with the proper air circulation and soil penetration it requires. The aerator’s weight (about 25 pounds) prevents it from bouncing on the ground during use which allows for a more consistent depth. The plug aerator has thirteen (13) 3/8-inch diameter hardened steel tines that helps to break up compacted soil, remove cores, and stimulate root growth. It can be towed behind a tractor or ATV and is easy to use.
The aerator is also durable and has a powder-coated finish. The Craftsman CMXGZBF7124213 is equipped with 24 galvanized steel tines that help to break up compacted soil, remove cores, and stimulate root growth. The aerator has a 40-inch tow bar, which means that you won’t have to worry about not being able to reach the whole lawn with the machine. In case you do need it for smaller areas just put an extension on the end of the tow bar. This is an easy process that can be done in about 15 minutes.
07. Brinly PA-48BH Tow Behind Plug Aerator
The Brinly PA-48BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator is a great tool for your yard. This aerator can be attached to any lawn tractor or ATV and pulled behind it to help break up the soil and improve air circulation. The 48″ plug aerator has 12 hardened steel plugs that help to penetrate the soil and remove vegetation that is inhibiting the growth of your grass. Once your lawn is aerated, it will allow water and nutrients to be absorbed into the soil more effectively. The ability of the soil to absorb these vital elements increases and allows for a stronger lawn with thicker growth and fewer weeds and pests.
The plug aerator comes fully assembled in the box and is easy to set up. It took me about 10 minutes to get it hooked up and ready to go. The aerator is also very lightweight, so it is easy to move around your yard as needed. The Brinly PA-48BH Tow-Behind Plug Aerator is constructed with a heavy-duty steel frame.
Overall, I think this product is a great tool for any gardener and very easy to use.
08. Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator
The Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator is a great tool for quickly and easily aerating your lawn. This aerator comes with a 48in.W working width and 32 coring plugs, making it perfect for large areas. The integrated tow bar makes it easy to attach to any tractor or ATV, and the transport wheels make it easy to move around your yard once you’ve finished aerating.
The plugs on the Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator are 2 1/2in. in-depth, which is perfect for aerating your lawn. The deep plugs will help to loosen the soil and improve air circulation, which will help your lawn to stay healthy and lush. The pin-style hitch is durable and easy to use, making it the perfect choice for any aerating needs.
Overall, the Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator is a great aerating tool for homeowners who have large yards.
09. Yard Tuff Plug Aerator
The Yard Tuff Plug Aerator is a handy tool to have around the yard. It’s easy to use and makes aerating your lawn a breeze. Simply plug it in and watch as the tines do all of the hard work for you.
The Yard Tuff Plug Aerator is powder coated in order to make it more durable and prevent the risk of scratching surfaces. The coating will protect your equipment against rust and corrosion, allowing it to last for years to come. It comes with 32 coring plugs that are 1.25-inches in diameter. These are designed to create small holes in your lawn that will fill back in overtime. The Yard Tuff Plug Aerator is lightweight enough for anyone to handle. This is perfect for people who may have trouble handling heavier tools or have a hard time lifting you.
This aerator is well-made and durable. It’s perfect for anyone with a small yard or who doesn’t want to spend a lot of time aerating their lawn. The Yard Tuff Plug Aerator is a great value and is definitely worth considering for your next aeration project.
10. Black Boar ATV/UTV Plugger
The Black Boar Aerator is a new product on the market that quickly and efficiently aerates the ground by removing plugs, allowing for increased air, water flow, and nutrient absorption. The Black Boar is a 66008 Implement that is designed to fit any ATV or UTV. This implement can be attached in minutes by using the included universal mount and requires no tools. The Black Boar has been tested on various soil types and found to be very effective in all of them.
The Black Boar Plugger is a great option for anyone looking to improve their soil health. This implement is designed to quickly and efficiently aerate the ground by removing plugs, allowing for increased air, water flow, and nutrient absorption.
The Black Boar is made of durable construction and is built to last. The implement has been tested on various soil types and found to be very effective in all of them.
Things to keep in mind before Purchasing an Aerator
Aerator Size and Depth
The first thing you should consider when looking for a pull-behind aerator is the size of the device. If you have large, thick grass areas to work on, an aerator with smaller tines will not do much good. A larger unit with deeper spoons can help get rid of compacted soil in large areas.
Number of Cores in Aerator Spoons
Another thing to consider when buying an aerator is the number of cores or spoons, it has. The more cores there are in a spoon, the deeper each pass will get and the better your results will be after only one use! It’s important to make sure your aerator has enough cores to work on the specific area you’ll be using it in.
Another thing to consider when buying an aerator is whether or not it can multitask, meaning that there are different types of things you can do with one unit rather than purchasing multiple tools for doing several jobs. For example, you can buy a unit that’s not only an aerator but also has attachments for dethatching and even seeding with one tool!
Another thing to consider when buying an aerator is how maneuverable the device will be. You want something easy to move around so it doesn’t take all day to aerate one area. Look for lockable wheels, as well as a handle with an ergonomic grip and suspension system so it doesn’t hurt your back or shoulders while you work!
Option to Add Extra Weight
Another thing to consider when buying an aerator is whether or not the unit is capable of adding weight. You can purchase weights to add on, or you may want to consider buying a unit with the option already built-in for extra weight! If your soil is too hard and compacted it will be difficult to get deep results without additional weight; look for an aerator that has this feature if you’re planning on working in a tough soil condition.
Build Quality and Durability
Another thing to consider when looking for an aerator is the durability of the device, as well as how durable its parts are! Look for an aerator that has heavy-duty wheels, caster arms, and legs; something with solid steel construction will last you much longer than units with plastic parts.
Plug Vs Spike Aerators
The ongoing battle between aeration equipment has been around for years, and the two main types of equipment are spike and plug.
Spike systems penetrate the soil using long hollow tines or spikes spun by a drill or motor to make an even pattern of holes in the turf. The holes provide a habitat for beneficial microbes and let air into compacted soil.
Plug aeration, however, removes large plugs of soil with hollow tines to provide greater oxygen and water penetration while reducing compaction.
So what’s the difference between plug vs spike aerating equipment? Which one is better? The answer is that it varies based on site conditions, budget, and personal preference. Will more holes make a better playing surface? Not necessarily.
In general, spike aeration is better for hard, compacted soils with low organic matter content and poor drainage. Plug aeration is better for soils that are not as compacted, have higher organic matter content, and have better drainage.
James, the D.I.Y Expert, graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture from Colorado State University. Love writing blog posts and guides to help others learn how to garden!