How to Choose the Best Paddle Mixer
Whilst professional tradies will already be familiar with this particular tool, DIYers might not have fully unlocked the time-saving potential of the reliable paddle mixer.
Used to facilitate the mixing of cement, mortar, adhesive, paint and other viscous liquids, paddle mixers can save time, energy and money. They’re easy to transport, versatile, and often save the need for hiring larger mixers.
When choosing the best paddle mixer you should consider the power, speed and comfort of the item, particularly if it is required for regular use.
Selecting the Right Power
The power of the paddle mixer will determine how much product can be mixed and how quickly.
Paddle mixers for professional jobs will have around 1800 W of power. The more powerful a paddle mixer is, the more strength it will have behind its paddle. Whilst less powerful models may stutter when mixing highly-viscous liquids, larger motors should allow the paddles to power through.
For the most part, such large motors will only be required when mixing large amounts of thick liquid. The weight of the material being mixed will also put strain on the motor.
Lower-powered machines (~850 W) will be sufficient for most home DIY jobs like mixing plaster, paint, and smaller quantities of cement. Often, these machines are still pretty strong, they just work at lower speeds and take longer to power through.
You can also check the mixing capacity of the machine, which is normally stated in kg. This will determine the maximum amount of product that can be mixed at one time. Less powerful machines usually have a lower capacity.
The Importance of Variable Speeds
It’s useful for a paddle mixer to have variable speeds, although it’s not essential. Different speeds are appropriate for different materials and different stages of mixing. Much like using a cake mixer, there are times when it can be useful to speed up and slow down in order to remove lumps from the mix.
Plus, if a liquid has low viscosity, a lower speed can stop it from going everywhere.
Having a paddle mixer with higher speed settings can also help get jobs done quicker, which is more important for professionals or those working to a strict timescale.
The best paddle mixers have a soft start which can reduce mess and splashing when you start off (without this it can be easy to underestimate how quickly the paddle is going to turn).
Don’t Overlook Handle Comfort!
Most heavy-duty paddle mixers have twin handles – these are essential as the machines are quite heavy and can vibrate whilst in use.
Double, ergonomic, soft-grip handles can make it much easier to control powerful mixers and reduce the strain on arms and hands.
Many smaller mixers have less substantial handles, and normally require hands to be positioned at differing angles to each other. As long as the machine is sufficiently light, this should still be comfortable. Plus, with smaller machines you are unlikely to be holding them for as long, as they will be used for smaller jobs.
You should also look for an ergonomic handle with a rubberized soft grip for maximum control and comfort.
Paddle Mixer FAQs
How does a paddle mixer work?
Paddle mixers are used for the quick mixing of substances such as paint, plaster and mortar. They are more affordable than rotary mixers and suitable for working with smaller quantities.
Paddle mixers have rotating blades and often a couple of gears or speeds. They are powered by either electricity or petrol, with the electric mixers being either mains or battery powered.
They will quickly combine materials in order to create a smooth mix without lumps. Even with smaller jobs, this is something that can be hard to achieve by hand. Seeing as they can be used for so many different materials, they can be a useful tool to have around especially whilst refurbishing a house or garden.
Can I use a paddle mixer to mix concrete?
Yes, but it will depend on the limitations of your specific model. Whilst paddle mixers can be used to mix concrete, they won’t manage to mix large quantities. The ‘weight capacity limit’ of a model will indicate how much concrete it can mix. You’ll also need to make sure that you are being very thorough – directing the paddle into all parts of the container in order to effectively combine all of the materials. The effectiveness of a paddle mixer depends on how well it is used, as well as how powerful it is.
How powerful a paddle mixer do I need?
If you’re doing basic DIY jobs – a spot of plastering, a bit of painting, and maybe a small amount of cement mixing – you can achieve most of these with an 850 W paddle mixer. More powerful mixers will be require if you want to mix larger quantities of heavier material- especially if you want to work quickly.