Once spring and summer get into full swing, gardeners enter a busy season with a host of clipping, pruning, and cutting projects. Vines and trees need to be periodically cut back to keep the yard looking manicured. But, what do you do with all of the byproducts of your cleanup effort? Sending it away can be a waste of money and time, and you can turn it into rich, organic compost for your garden. It’s a great way to start your next batch in your compost bin, and this is where a chipper shredder comes in. It’ll take all of these trimmings and grind them down into a rich and nutrient-dense compost that makes a wonderful base material to create layered compost you can use all around your yard.
One of the first things you’ll notice is that there are a host of chipper shredders out there, and it’s challenging to pick out the best one. You have to look at brands, power sources, and the machine’s capabilities before you pick out a chipper shredder, and this can be an expensive investment. That’s why I’ve done the research for you. I’ve picked out 10 high-quality chipper-shredders and reviewed them. You can take a look, compare the products, and use the short buyer’s guide to make your final decision.
The correct chipper shredder can help you fly through your yard work to reduce your debris and make mulch you can use all over your garden or flowers. The other new tool by Jinx McCombs / CC BY-ND 2.0
- Patriot Products Chipper Shredder – Top Pick
- SuperHandy Wood Chipper Shredder – Step-Up Pick
- EFCUT Mini Wood Chipper Shredder – Mid-End Budget Pick
- WEN Rolling Chipper and Shredder – Bargain Budget Pick
- GreatCircleUSA Wood Chipper Shredder – Best for Large Branches
- Landworks Mini Wood Chipper Shredder – Best for Yard Cleanup
- TACKLIFE Wood Chipper – Best for Small Projects
- Earthwise Corded Electric Chipper – Best for Projects at Home
- SuperHandy Wood Chipper – Best for Clearing Out Debris
- Sun Joe Wood Chipper Shredder – Best for Making Rich Mulch
- Chipper Shredder Buying Guide
- Bottom Line
Patriot Products Chipper Shredder – Top Pick
This chipper shredder makes the top pick on the list because it can chip branches up to 2 ½-inches thick, and you can easily use it to shred leaves. You don’t have to worry about fiddling around with oil or gas, and you can turn it on by flipping a switch. This makes it possible to use it in your basement, garage, or hothouse without a problem. It plugs into a standard 110-volt outlet, and you can cook up a 100-foot extension cord to it to give you more ease of movement. When you purchase this unit, you get a standard collection bag and safety goggles to shield your eyes from any flying debris when it runs.
This chipper shredder from Patriot Products has a smooth and quiet maintenance-free electric motor that is easy to maintain, and it always starts right up. The larger hopper on the front of the unit allows you to easily shred more leaves, and it will produce coin-sized chips out of slightly larger branches. All of the processed materials will come out the side of the machine into the collection bag, and the bag can hold up to twice the standard volume to help you take on large projects without having to constantly empty the bag out. It has a metal design that resists rust and corrosion to make it very durable, and it comes with a warranty.
- Two-year warranty
- Chips 2 ½-inch thick branches
- Uses a 110-volt standard outlet
- Electric motor
- Very little maintenance required
- Sturdy and stable
- Bag can hold double the volume
- Very expensive
SuperHandy Wood Chipper Shredder – Step-Up Pick
My step-up pick for the best chipper shredder is slightly easier on your wallet, and it has a nice multi-function capability that allows you to attach a leaf vacuum for mulching or chip branches. It has a 3-in-1 design with a 15:1 reduction ratio when you’re using the top hopper to ensure you get a very fine mulch. You can chip branches up to three-inches in diameter without it stalling. There is a slanted housing design that reduces the possibility of jams when you work, and it has a tow bar kit that makes it quick and easy to hook this chipper shredder up to your lawn mower, ATV, or small tractor to move it around your project site to keep moving at a steady pace.
There is a recoil starting mechanism on this product that houses a 7-horsepower 212cc horizontal four-stroke single cylinder OHV gas-powered engine. It has a maximum capacity of 0.7 gallons. It comes with a thorough user manual that tells you how to work it, and you can use it to help with fire prevention and building firebreaks. As a bonus, this machine is also EPA/CARB certified. It works well for mulching leaves and corn stalks, and you can use it easily for chipping branches. You don’t want to use it on pine cones, fresh greens, petrified wood, palm fronds, or petrified vines because it’ll jam.
- 3-in-1 design
- 15:1 reduction ratio
- Slanted housing design
- Hooks to a lawn mower or ATV
- Gas-powered engine
- EPA/CARB certified
- Can help with fire prevention
- Very loud when running
EFCUT Mini Wood Chipper Shredder – Mid-End Budget Pick
This is a mini chipper shredder from EFCUT that has a powerful recoil entine to help you tackle larger projects without breaking the bank. It runs on a Shineray seven-horsepower 212cc horizontal four-stroke single cylinder OHV gas-powered engine. This allows it to chip branches up to three-inches in diameter, and the branches have a maximum length of 10-inches. It has a unique construction design that makes using it, moving it, and routine maintenance quick and easy. It’s lightweight and durable. It comes equipped with convenient windows that you can use to check and see when it’s time to replace the blades or clear out any jams or blockage.
This chipper shredder comes with a reduction rate of 15:1, and this is small enough to make a fine but rich mulch to put around your garden. When you purchase this product, you get a one-year warranty that will protect you against machine part failure, but it doesn’t include the blades. This shredder will automatically stop when the lubricating oil falls below a safe level to protect the equipment from overheating. In turn, this reduces the overall wear and tear on the machine while keeping it safe for you to use. Since it has a more compact design, it’s easy to store between uses.
- 212cc motor
- Chips three-inch branches
- Convenient windows
- 15:1 chip ratio
- Automatically stops for safety
- One-year warranty
- Lightweight and compact
- Difficult to assemble
WEN Rolling Chipper and Shredder – Bargain Budget Pick
Wen’s chipper shredder will help you turn your lawn clippings, foliage, and twigs into a nutrient-rich, high-grade mulch to spread around your vegetable garden or raised planter boxes. It is powerful enough to shred branches and sticks that are up to 1.5-inches in diameter without a problem. It comes equipped with a 15-amp motor that will provide up to 8,000 cuts every minute, and this works out to over 130 cuts per second to shred through tough branches. The sleek black and orange color scheme makes this a highly visible tool when you use it outside, and it has a durable design that will withstand a lot of wear and tear.
There is an internal safety mechanism on this chipper shredder that prevents it from starting up when the hopper is open, and this ensures that you don’t have any accidents. You get two seven-inch cutting blades with this product, two six-inch wheels, a push stick, onboard storage, a collection bag, and a two-year warranty from the date of purchase when you buy this item. The six-inch wheels allow you to move over uneven terrain with ease, and they make this a very stable product that will stay upright throughout using it.
- Chips branches up to 1.5-inches in diameter
- 8,000 cuts a minute
- Black and orange coloring
- Internal safety mechanism
- Two larger wheels
- Metal stand
- Two-year warranty
- Runs slightly slower
GreatCircleUSA Wood Chipper Shredder – Best for Large Branches
Anyone who has a lot of larger branches around their home or job site should look at GreatCircleUSA’s chipper shredder. This is a 3-in-1 shredder, mulcher, and chipper that has a reduction ratio of 15:1 when you use the top hopper, and it has ½-inch max volume shredding and chipping. There is a side chute that will reduce three-inch branches to mulch, and you could attach a leaf vacuum too. It has a gas-powered engine that runs on unleaded gasoline, and it has a 0.7 gallon max capacity. So, you get a lot of run-time on a little amount of gas, and this also lends more power to the product.
There is a very efficient design on this chipper shredder that allows you to hook it up to your ATV, lawnmower, or to a small tractor and move it around your job site with ease. This product works well for green waste recycling, landscaping, gardens, and forestry cleanup, and you can use it for home or professional-grade projects. It has a metal design that makes it resistant to rust, corrosion, or generalized wear and tear with heavy use to ensure it lasts longer. The larger tires make it easy to move over uneven or rough terrain without it getting stuck, and it has a very stable design that won’t tip or fall.
- Shreds, chips, and mulches
- Reduction ratio of 15:1
- Metal design
- Resists corrosion or rust
- Larger tires
- Long run-time
- Instructions are vague
Landworks Mini Wood Chipper Shredder – Best for Yard Cleanup
If you want efficient performance that is perfect for cleaning up your yard after you use your riding lawn mower, try this chipper shredder from Landworks. Even though this is a mini product, it still has a 15:1 reduction ratio with a large, extended feeding chute that will take branches and debris that are up to three-inches in diameter. It has a unique, compact design with a vertical extended discharge chute. This allows you to get accurate debris discharge at an angle that ranges from 90° up to 145° to suit your terrain. It’s nice for sloped yards or uneven areas where you need more flexibility.
This chipper shredder runs on a gas-powered seven-horsepower engine, and this gives you enough power to go through jobs without it getting stuck, bogging down, or clogging. The front of this shredder has a durable metal bar that folds down to hold it in place, and this provides excellent stability when you work. In turn, this increases how safe you are around it. You can use it to help you build fire breaks or for fire prevention, and the design comes certified by CARB and the EPA. There is a detailed user manual included to help you set it up and get it to run.
- Nice reduction ratio
- Extended feeding chute
- Angled discharge area
- Larger tires
- Works well on sloped terrain
- Gas-powered engine
- EPA certified
- Doesn’t come with oil
TACKLIFE Wood Chipper – Best for Small Projects
Tacklife’s chipper shredder is an electric corded model that comes equipped with a powerful 15A pure copper motor that won’t break down or jam, and it has a pure metal gearbox that will help the product put out a 16:1 reduction ratio. Three is a roller blade on this product with seven teeth, and it has a maximum cutting torque of 460Nm. This is enough power to cut wood and branches with a high efficiency to give you a fine mulch for your garden. There is a very compact design on this tool that makes it easy to store or move from place to place, and it has larger tires that give it excellent portability.
When this chipper shredder cuts branches, it produces lower noise levels at 94dB, and this allows you to use it with people around without disturbing them. It produces no smog, and this makes it very eco-friendly. There is an instant start switch with an overload protection switch that reduces the overall wear and tear on the machine while working to keep you safe. The push paddle allows you to safely feed the branches into the blades while keeping your hands away. There is a two-year warranty included from the date of purchase that will help protect you from part failure or damage.
- Electric corded model
- 16:1 reduction ratio
- Roller blade
- Compact design
- Overload protection switch
- Two-year warranty
- Start switch can stick
Earthwise Corded Electric Chipper – Best for Projects at Home
Do you have projects piling up like enriching your potting soil for your garden or setting up your gardening area? You need the right tools for the job, and Earthwise’s chipper shredder can help move everything along and keep you on track. This is a powerful chipper and mulcher that runs on a 15-amp electric motor, and it has enough power to shred branches that are up to 1.5-inches thick without clogging or jamming. This is a very portable design that you can move from spot to spot around your yard with sturdy rear wheels, and it has a metal frame with rubber bottoms that make it very sturdy and stable.
The chute features a tamper tool that allows you to safely guide your branches and debris into this chipper shredder without getting your hands anywhere near the blades. It comes equipped with a 1.2 bushel collection bin that holds a fair amount of shredded and mulched debris, and this allows you to take on small and large-scale projects. It is very easy to clean between uses or clear clogs out, and this allows you to work steadily until you finish. The upright design and more narrow profile make it easy to store between uses without taking up a lot of extra space.
- Shreds 1.5-inch thick branches
- 15-amp motor
- Portable design
- Tamper tool
- 1.2 bushel collection bin
- Easy to clean
- Narrow profile
- No protection for the interlock switch
SuperHandy Wood Chipper – Best for Clearing Out Debris
SuperHandy’s chipper shredder is an all electric corded model that has a durable polypropylene body that won’t crack while putting up with a lot of heavy use. It runs on a 15-amp, 1,800-watt, 120VAC 60Hz belt driven motor that can cut through 1.9-inch branches with ease. It offers a 17:1 reduction ratio with 4,100RPMs of speed. It’s quiet, and it releases no smog to be more environmentally-friendly, and it allows you to use it in your garage without worrying about fumes. There is a larger 40-liter collection bin, and you get a push paddle that you can use to guide the branches and debris to the blades while keeping your hands away.
This chipper shredder won’t rust or dent, and it has dual cutting blades for maximum power. It comes with an instant start switch that reduces the strain on your body when you use it, and it has an overload protection switch to keep the motor from overheating when it runs for extended periods. The dual six-inch wheels make it easy to transport from place to place, and it has a more compact design that is easy to store. This product comes to strict safety standards set by OSHA, and each one is cull quality tested to ensure you get a tool that is going to last. It works best with an indoor/outdoor environment.
- 17:1 reduction ratio
- Shreds 1.9-inch branches
- No smog or emissions
- 40-liter collection bag
- Durable design
- Two six-inch wheels
- Strict safety standards
- Noisy on larger branches
Sun Joe Wood Chipper Shredder – Best for Making Rich Mulch
The final chipper shredder on the list comes from Sun Joe, and it allows you to quickly and easily turn all of your yard debris into a rich mulch to spread around your vegetable garden layout. It uses a robust 15-amp motor to complete tasks, and it runs at speeds of up to 4,300 RPMs. This allows you to work through larger scale projects without taking all day to complete them, and it works well for light-duty jobs. It’ll chip and shred branches up to 1.5-inches in diameter, and this will reduce your yard waste up to 1/17th of the original size. In turn, you can easily clean up your yard without having to worry about storing a huge amount of leftover debris. It all condenses down nicely.
This chipper shredder is almost maintenance-free, and this makes it a very user-friendly design. You won’t have to deal with fumes or smoke with this product because it’s electric powered, and this also means that it starts easily with the push of a button. There is a safety stop that will switch the machine off when you open the hopper to keep you safe. It puts out 113 dB of sound, and this is quiet enough to use in residential areas without interrupting anyone. It’s ETL approved, and you get a full two-year warranty from the date of purchase that will protect you from defects or damage.
- ETL approved
- Shreds branches up to 1.5-inches in diameter
- 4,300 RPMs
- 15-amp motor
- 113 dB
- Two-year warranty
- Not suited for heavy-duty projects
Chipper Shredder Buying Guide
What should you look for when you start to shop for a chipper shredder? I demonstrated that there are several high-quality products available, but how do you decide which one is best for you? This short buying guide will outline the criteria you want to keep in mind to ensure you pick out the best chipper shredder for your needs.
Your engine’s horsepower will dictate how powerful your machine is. The more horsepower a machine has, the stronger it is. In turn, you’ll be able to shred and chip bigger branches or run for longer periods of time without the unit overheating and shutting down. It also means that the machine is larger and heavier.
The capacity of your chipper shredder refers to how large the branches are that it can safety handle. This can range from 1.5-inches in diameter up to over 3-inches in diameter. Take a few minutes and think about the capacity you need. If you have smaller branches, you can get away with a more lightweight machine. However, it’s always best to have it slightly more powerful than you need instead of not powerful enough.
The power and reduction ratio on your tool will vary, and it’s important that you get one that matches your needs. If you have a lot of debris, look for a higher reduction ratio to ensure you have space to store and use the leftover items. Wood chipper by Watchcaddy / CC BY-NC 2.0
You’ll notice that I listed the reduction ratio on almost every chipper shredder on the list. This ratio refers to how efficiently your chipper shredder can reduce your yard debris like lawn trimmings to put in your rock garden. A 10:1 reduction ratio means that it can take 10 bags of debris and condense them down into one bag of processed materials.
Do you want a crank, pull, or push-button start? Most electric models come with an easy push-button starting mechanism, and a lot of the gas-powered options have either crank or pull starts. An electric start is easier as a general rule.
Tow Bar or Hitch
Unless you plan to bring all of your debris to one location and bring them to your chipper shredder, you want something that is portable. Having a tow bar or a hitch is one way to accomplish this. If it’s a smaller model, consider the wheels and whether or not it’s feasible to tilt it back and push or pull it along.
A high-quality chipper shredder can help you accomplish a lot of projects around your home or business. As long as you take your time and read the reviews, it’s easy to narrow down your products. Use the short buyer’s guide to help you make your final choice. As long as you do this, you should get a gardening and landscape tool that you use year in and year out to create rich mulch and get rid of yard debris.