Weed burners are handy pieces of kit if you don’t fancy bending down to weed or don’t want to use chemicals.
Some people think weed burners work by burning the weeds to ash dragon-style – but this isn’t the case!
They work by heating water in weed cells so they burst. This means burnt weeds will die over a few days. This calls for an application of heat for around 5 seconds depending on your weed burner’s capability.
You should always read the manual as this will tell you how long to hold a weed burner in place.
Here’s a general overview to help you efficiently and safely use a weed burner.
How To Use A Weed Burner
- Fit the nozzle that best suits the weeds you’re tackling. Smaller nozzles are best for individual weeds.
- Set the temperature. Large mature weeds need a harsher blast of heat, but small tender weeds only need a light touch. Going overboard and torching small weeds with intense heat just leads to lawn or driveway paving scorch marks.
- Let the burner warm up for around a minute.
- Hold the weed burner around 5 centimetres over the weed for the manufacturer’s recommended time. This will be around 5-10 seconds. Ensure the longer side covers the top of the weed.
- The weed should be visibly wilted after heat application, not burnt to a crisp.
- When you’ve finished turn off the weed burner and let it cool down before touching the end or storing it away.
- Give the weed burner several hours to cool because the metal end gets extremely hot
Electric or Gas?
If you have a gas cannister weed burner first attach the gas cannister, adjust the outlet flow, push the ignition, and you’re good to go.
An electric weed burner will need plugging in and temperature adjustment. Electric weed burners will probably need a cable extension too, so ensure this is safely out of the way to avoid tripping.
Do You Have Asthma or Breathing Issues?
It’s worth wearing a mask if you’re sensitive to smoke. Some weeds can smolder and provoke adverse reactions.
I’d recommend keeping small children and pets away too as the end of a weed burner gets extremely hot – 650 degrees for electric and 1300 degrees for gas versions. Wear gloves just in case.
When’s Best To Use A Weed Burner?
It’s best to burn weeds in early spring when they’re still young and you have a good chance of bursting root cells and killing them completely.
Most weeds need a second or third burn before they give up the ghost, but as weed burning is a little addictive this isn’t usually a problem!
As well as wearing a mask and gloves for safety it’s important that you don’t use a weed burner in very hot conditions as it can cause a fire. Always clear the area of dry grass or loose dry materials before applying heat in the garden.