2-cycle engines require a mixture of gas and oil in the fuel tank. Also known as 2-stroke engines, this type of engine is lighter and simpler to maintain than a 4-cycle engine.
2-cycle engines also have the potential to pack about twice the power into the same space as a 4-cycle model. This combination of light-weight and twice the power gives 2-cycle engines a great power-to-weight ratio.
4-cycle handheld string trimmers are more similar to the car your drive – gas goes in the fuel tank and oil goes into the crankcase. They work in the same manner as a car engine as well. They're more fuel efficient than 2-cycle engines, so you get more “mileage” out of every tankful of gas when using your 4-cycle string trimmer.
A 4-cycle engine also has the capability to produce more power overall than a 2-cycle. This typically results in a larger engine in terms of size and weight, which can have drawbacks for those who are physically unable to sustain the trimmer for longer periods of time.
Shaft Style Curved-Shaft String Trimmers are easy to maneuver for flower bed trimming and more simple tasks. Because the head of the trimmer is curved inward, you do not have as much flexibility to trim in hard-to-reach corners and crevices.
Straight-Shaft String Trimmers are the tool of choice for landscaping pros because they have plenty of power and torque to rip through thick grass and brush. This is the tool for trimming under fences and other tight places.
Entry-Level Gas Handheld Buyer's Guide - Find out Pick the Perfect Entry-Level Handheld Gas Trimmer. Our string trimmer how-to library can help you pick the perfect electric string trimmer, gas string trimmer, walk behind string trimmer or brush cutter.