In this guide we’ll take a look at the best lawn rollers for UK Gardens.
I’ve compared manoeuvrability, effectiveness, drum size and cost
to give you my top recommendations.
In this guide we’ll take a look at the best lawn rollers for UK Gardens.
The Best Lawn Rollers Are...
- Best heavy duty lawn roller: Costway Heavy Duty 63 Litre Lawn Roller
- Best budget lawn roller: Oypla Galvanised Steel Lawn Roller
- Best lightweight option: Garden Gear Heavy Duty Manual Push Lawn Roller
Compare Their Features Here
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- Best For
- Drum Capacity
- Width of Drum
- Our score
Read Our In-Depth Reviews
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Costway Heavy Duty 63 Litre Lawn Roller Review
- Drum Capacity: 63 L
- Weight: 13 kg
- Width of Drum: 90cm
Big jobs on large lawns require substantial tools.
With this in mind, it doesn’t get much more substantial than the 90 cm-wide Costway Heavy Duty 63 Litre Lawn Roller – it’s the biggest option featured here and definitely the best lawn roller for large gardens.
The 63 L drum weighs around 110 kg when filled with sand, and 75 kg when filled with water. Of course, buying 65 L of sand is no joke, so it’s cheaper and easier to fill up with water, but helpful to have the option of a heavier weight if necessary.
If you’ve had a bit of a mole takeover in the garden, and are keen to flatten out their hills, or have loose soil that you want to pack down, this roller is a good tool to have around.
It does need putting together when it arrives, but all of the holes are pre-drilled so it’s simply a case of screwing the parts together which doesn’t take long.
The galvanized-steel construction is pretty hardy as it takes a long time to rust, but the roller should be kept indoors because it’s not completely rust-resistant.
Speaking of storage, finding a place for this roller may prove a little tricky, just because it’s such a wide unit. Although, it can be stood upright to reduce its footprint, so that’s one good thing.
Something else to bear in mind is that this roller struggles to flatten more prominent, uneven patches of lawn – it’s best suited to rolling out divots, mole hills and loose soil. This seems to be because, due to its large width, the weight isn’t highly concentrated in just one area.
- The handle folds down for easy storage in tight spaces
- When not filled, this roller is relatively lightweight and easy to move into storage
- A great option for medium to large size lawns thanks to its 90cm width
- Easy to both fill and drain
- Weighs 110 kg when filled with sand which is heavy enough for stubborn bumps
- The width makes it a little tricky to manoeuvre around tight spaces
- Although easy to use, there is no padding on the handle which makes it less comfortable than others on the market
- When filled to capacity, this roller may damage softer areas
- The 90 cm width means weight is distributed out and it doesn't work as well on tougher bumps
Oypla Galvanised Steel Lawn Roller Review
- Drum Capacity: 30 L
- Weight: 6.92 kg
- Width of Drum: 42cm
If the sight of an uneven and bumpy lawn is causing you grief, but storage space is also proving problematic, this Oypla Galvanised Steel Lawn Roller packs away compactly whilst still being heavy enough to smooth over some patches of garden.
It weighs around 30 kg when the 30 L drum is filled with water, and 45 kg when filled with sand, so it’s best used for flattening loose soil and obvious divots.
Whilst the weight isn’t suited to evening out large areas, given that the roller isn’t wide or heavy enough, the relatively small 42 cm width does mean the weight is concentrated more in one area.
As a result, it’s particularly well suited to levelling areas of fresh ground for sowing grass seed. The narrow width also helps with manoeuvrability around smaller patches of lawn, or on flowerbeds, which is helpful for this purpose.
Returning to the subject of storage, the handle folds down by loosening a couple of screws which makes for a smaller unit to pack away. It only weighs 6.92 kg when empty, so can also be hung in the garage if preferred.
The most time-consuming process comes if you are hoping to fill the drum of this roller with sand. The opening is around 3 cm in diameter, so a hose fits easily to fill it with water; however, you’ll have to use a funnel to fill it with sand and this can take a long time – we’re talking 40 minutes or more.
- Simple and easy to assemble
- Easy to manoeuvre in tight spaces thanks to the 42cm width
- A good budget option for small to medium size gardens
- Lightweight enough to be carried in and out of storage with relative ease at just under 7 kg
- The hole for filling with sand is quite small, which makes filling the roller to capacity a time-consuming process
- The handle may be a little short for some users making it necessary to stoop
- May not be wide enough for large gardens
- At 45 kg when filled with sand, this roller may not be heavy enough for stubborn bumps
Garden Gear Heavy Duty Manual Push Lawn Roller Review
- Drum Capacity: 30 L
- Weight: 6 kg
- Width of Drum: 42cm
For levelling out ground in small to medium gardens, the Garden Gear Heavy Duty Manual Push Lawn Roller offers a good combination of size and weight.
The 30 L galvanized-steel drum is 42 cm wide, and weighs around 36 kg when filled with water, and 60 kg when filled with sand.
If you’re wondering what 30 L of sand looks like, it’s approximately two large bags of builder’s sand – like the kiln-dried sand you can buy from DIY shops.
Whilst this isn’t too expensive, it can take a long time to actually fill the drum with the sand – you’ll need a funnel and a fair amount of patience.
If you want to use this roller to gently smooth over the whole garden, it’s a good size for navigating around any obstacles you may have (like flowerbeds) without being too heavy to control.
It’s also a particularly good options for preparing small/medium lawns for turfing due to its manoeuvrability and lighter weight. It works well to flatten subsoil and could also be rolled over new turf after it has taken root.
- A small and sturdy roller best suited to small to medium size lawns
- At 60 kg when filled with sand, this roller is effective on most lawns
- The removable handle makes storing this roller very easy
- The 42 cm width ensures it’s easy to manoeuvre around tight spaces
- Takes a long time to fill with sand as the hole is very small
- Won’t roll smoothly unless filled to capacity, so you are unable to gradually increase the weight
- When filled with water, this roller isn’t particularly heavy at just 36 kg
- Needs to be kept covered or stored inside as some users have noticed rust
How to Choose The Best Lawn Roller
A lawn roller is a simple tool designed to keep your lawn looking in good condition.
They are perfect for ironing out any lumps caused by raised soil or holes. Hard frost can also move the soil around, and a lawn roller can help neaten things out again if you notice things have gotten a little bumpy.
Lighter rollers are also great for preparing loose soil for reseeding or turfing, so there are a lot of uses for these tools.
Therefore, the question is, how do you go about finding the best lawn roller? Aren’t they all the same?
Confusingly, there can be quite a lot of variation between models, so the following information has been put together to help you make an informed decision:
Mechanical Vs. Manual Rollers
Manual rollers are well suited to smaller gardens and spaces. They can be used by most gardeners and require physical manual force to move them around.
Seeing as these rollers aren’t as large as mechanical rollers, they are also useful for manoeuvring around features and other obstacles in the garden.
If you have a large garden, you could of course still buy a manual roller, but you’ll just have to be ready and willing to do a lot of intensive labour!
Mechanical rollers require a machine to pull them along. As a result, they are large and serious pieces of kit – not a standard tool for a normal garden.
They’re extremely heavy, designed for very large lawns/ orchards and the like.
They can be towed by a ride-on mower if you have one, and obviously take all the hard work out of manually rolling the lawn. However, storage can be an issue due to their size, so these are really best suited to gardeners with a lot of land and some well-sized outbuildings.
Width and Drum Capacity
Rollers come in various sizes, with variation in roller width and drum capacity.
A wide lawn roller is the best option for large gardens. Narrower rollers are best if your lawn is smaller with a lot of trees or flowerbeds to navigate.
For medium/large gardens: a width of around 90 cm is recommended.
For small/medium gardens: a width of around 42 cm will be a lot easy to manoeuvre and navigate around obstacles.
A couple of things come into play when looking at drum capacity.
Larger drum capacity means the roller can be made heavier – better for rolling out bumps; however, naturally, a heavier roller will be harder to move around.
Rollers with a drum capacity of around 30 L are best for small to medium size lawns; they strike a good balance between weight and efficiency. A 30 L drum will weigh approximately 36 kg when filled with water and 60 kg when filled with sand.
These rollers will generally be best suited to rolling loose soil, a well as flattening down mole hills and levelling out lumps caused by frost.
Rollers with a drum capacity of around 60 L are best for bigger spaces and smoothing out larger bumps. A 60 L roller will weigh approximately 36 kg when filled with water and 120 kg when filled with sand.
The narrower the roller, the more the weight will be concentrated over a smaller area. Therefore, looking for a narrower roller with a large drum capacity can also make sense if you have a lot of flattening to do.
Quality of Construction Materials
The material of the roller can dictate both its lifespan and its effectiveness.
Steel rollers are by far the most durable. They can be extremely heavy, especially if filled with sand, which can be good news for bump flattening. However, they can be tricky to move in and out of storage due to their weight.
Galvanized steel is often used in the construction of rollers – this tends to be strong, and stand up well to the demands of frequent rolling, but it’s not completely rust resistant. Therefore, it’s important to keep a steel roller dry and out of the elements when not in use.
Plastic rollers are best for light work. These won’t exert too much pressure on the soil, but they are very affordable and great for gardens that just need a light rolling. This can be useful after turfing, for example, when you don’t want to use a heavy roller.
Filling Your Lawn Roller
Not only do you need to choose the right roller, you also need to make sure you can fill it correctly.
The most popular filler options are water and sand.
Filling Your Roller with Water
Water is lighter than sand and is generally suitable for jobs that don’t require such a heavy weight, like rolling freshly aerated soil.
It’s easy to fill and empty a roller when using water. You can simply fill it using a hosepipe, and then empty it into watering cans, buckets, or flowerbeds when finished. It’s a cheap, hassle-free option because you already have everything at home.
Filling Your Roller with Sand
Sand is a better option for more demanding jobs.
Rollers with a large capacity (60 L+) can hold a huge amount of sand and become very heavy which is great for really uneven lawns. The disadvantage of sand is that it can be awkward to fill and empty the drum. Plus, will need to purchase the sand in the first place.
If you have a large roller, you might have to purchase over 100 kg of sand. This can be quite difficult to manage, as well as pricey.
Advice when using sand:
- kiln-dried sand is the best type to use because it is fine and dry. Other sands can be too damp or claggy and make it difficult to fill the drum.
- Use a funnel to fill the drum with sand. Don’t try to do this job when you’re rushed for time – it can take around 40 minutes to fill a 30 L drum (depending on the size of the hole).
Lawn Roller FAQs
When should I use my lawn roller?
This tool should be used judiciously; overuse can cause stress to grass and compact the soil.
Avoid rolling in dry summer months when grass is already stressed. For best results, roll your lawn when it is moist but not waterlogged – spring is often the best time.
Only use as much weight as is necessary to do the job. For this reason, fill your lawn roller with water first. If this achieves the result you require, there is no need for heavier rolling.
However, if the weight is not enough you can then move on to filling the drum with sand. It is also wise to aerate your lawn after using your lawn roller to minimise any compaction.
What kind of sand should I use in my lawn roller?
For best results, you should use kiln-dried sand. This sand is fine and dry, making it easier to fill the drum. Use a funnel to help fill the drum to significantly reduce wastage as well as make the job quicker and easier.
What is the best weight for a lawn roller?
A weight of around 50 kg, once the drum is filled, is generally sufficient for most for light jobs – flattening loose soil, levelling mole hills, etc.
Rollers with a filled weight of over 100 kg are the most effective when it comes to levelling larger uneven areas. You’ll need a tractor or ride-on mower to tow them.