The Best Loppers for the Money

Loppers are one of the most useful pruning tools you can own. Loppers make it easy to cut twigs and branches with minimal effort. However, not all loppers are created equal. Our buyer’s guide breaks down this cutting tool in detail. Here’s how to find the best loppers for cutting and pruning.

Quick Look: 5 Best Loppers

Let’s start with a look at five of our favorites. Not only are these loppers from some of the top brands, but they’re also known for their durability, ease of use, and powerful blades.

Here are five of the best loppers currently available:

Fiskars Power Gear 9136

The Fiskars Power Gear 9136 is a durable and lightweight set of loppers.

Designed with versatility in mind, these bypass-style loppers have extended aluminum handles to make it easy to reach high into a tree or shrub. The blades are sharp with a precision-edge capable of slicing through living growth a maximum of 1” to 1.5” thick.

Not only does the corrosion-resistant blade prevent rust and other damage, but it also ensures a smooth and seamless cutting motion every time. These loppers incorporate “Power Gear” technology. A sort of patented ratchet system in the middle of the blade, it greatly increases the leverage and force of each cut.

What We Like:

  • “Power Gear” leverage system
  • Precision-edge blades
  • Lightweight construction

What We Don’t Like:

  • Blades prone to minor bending


Wolf-Garten Power Cut

Strength is at the forefront of the Wolf-Garten Power Cut. These telescoping-bypass loppers use super strong blades. According to the company, these German-steel blades are up to four times stronger than the competition.

Not only are these blades strong, but they’re also very sharp. They will experience minimal wear even after long-term use. Other highlights of the Wolf-Garten Power Cut include the lightweight construction, safety bumpers, and comfortable grips. But perhaps the most exciting feature is the telescoping handles. This allows you to adjust the handles to the height of the branch you’re cutting (they extend up to 35.5”).

What We Like:

  • Super strong blades
  • Telescoping handles
  • Dual pivot cutting

What We Don’t Like:

  • Single-position grips

Tabor Tools GL18

The Tabor Tools GL18 is a budget-friendly pair of loppers that don’t skimp on quality. Although Tabor Tools has a number of models in various sizes, this 20” bypass version is a good in-between for most gardeners and homeowners. The tool has powerful bypass blades coated with carbon steel. Not only does this mean that they’re sharp, but it means they’ll stay sharp for years on end.

The blade design plus bypass style construction and long handles make it easy to cut through branches up to 1” thick with minimal effort. Additional highlights include the comfortable handle grips, lightweight construction, and hook holes on the handles for easy storage. This same Tabor Tools model is also available in a 28” version.

What We Like:

  • Affordable
  • Carbon steel coated blades
  • Lightweight construction

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not as durable as other models

Spear & Jackson 8290RS

The Spear & Jackson 8290RS Loppers take an old-school approach. One standout feature is the anvil-style blades. Unlike most modern loppers that use bypass-blades, this model has only a single blade that moves while the other stays in place to provide a solid cutting surface.

Another throwback to the past is the built-to-last design. These are an incredibly durable powerhouse – without much extra weight. This Spear & Jackson tool uses Sk5 carbon steel for the blades with a Teflon coating to prevent rust and other damage.

Telescoping handles are another nice touch. Strong yet lightweight (with comfortable grips), they enable you to reach high up into trees to cut difficult-to-reach branches with ease. Spear & Jackson offers a 10-year warranty on their 8290RS Loppers.

What We Like:

  • Carbon steel blades
  • Telescoping handles
  • 10-year warranty

What We Don’t Like:

  • Relatively expensive

Corona FL 3420

The Corona FL 3420 is another quality choice for those that prefer anvil-style loppers. These employ a unique 4-bar compound-linkage cutting system for maximum cutting power. According to the company, it triples the power of each cut. Another highlight is the durable handles. At 32” long, they offer plenty of reach and leverage for most cutting jobs.

Comfortable handle grips, a Teflon-coated high-carbon steel blade, and lightweight fiberglass handles are additional highlights. That said, the best aspect of all is durability. These are designed to last. Even with a lot of use, they will likely stand up for years on end.

What We Like:

  • High-carbon steel blade
  • 4-bar compound-linkage cutting system
  • Durable, lightweight handles

What We Don’t Like:

  • Heavier than other models

Loppers 101

Loppers might seem like a very simple tool because in practice, they are straightforward to use. But this doesn’t mean that there isn’t a lot of variation between different models. For example, some have sharper, stronger blades than others. These naturally cut through twigs and branches more easily. Today, I’m going to look at all of the most important factors and features you must consider when buying a pair of loppers for the garden.

Here’s what you need to know before you buy.

Types of Loppers

Loppers can be broken down into two main types.

These categories relate to the cutting blade style and design. According to Popular Mechanics, the two main types of loppers are bypass and anvil loppers.

Here’s how each type works:

  • Bypass Loppers – The two blades move simultaneously (like scissors) for a clean cut.
  • Anvil Loppers – Only one of the blades moves while the other stays in place. The motion is much like using a knife against a cutting board.

Bypass loppers are the most common of the two types. In fact, most of our top recommendations above utilize the bypass design for its durability, versatility, and ease of use. The chief situation in which anvil loppers are a better bet is when you’ll primarily be cutting dry wood.

Pros and Cons

Loppers can be a very beneficial addition to your gardening toolkit.

Their main benefits include:

  • Versatility – Loppers can be used to cut branches and twigs on trees, shrubs, and bushes of varying thicknesses.
  • Reach Higher – The long handles on loppers give you the ability to cut hard-to-reach branches.
  • More Leverage – The long handles also increase leverage to maximize cutting power to cut through thick branches with ease.

But despite all of these benefits, Better Homes and Gardens states that loppers do have some minor disadvantages.

The main disadvantages include:

  • Dangerous – Like any gardening tool, loppers can be dangerous. Not only do they have sharp blades, but using them often involves standing on a ladder cutting branches that are overhead of you.

Carefully weigh these pros and cons to ensure that this is the gardening tool that actually best meets your needs.

Loppers Buying Guide

There are a few key factors you must keep in mind while searching for loppers (even if you go with one of our top choices from above).

The most important factors to consider include:

  • Blade Type – Bypass and anvil loppers each have their own benefits.
  • Blade Quality – Look for a durable, steel blade with sharp edges. Special coatings are often applied to prevent rust.
  • Cutting Mechanism – Many loppers now have ratcheting, compound, or geared cutting mechanisms to increase cutting power.
  • Handle Length – Long handles give you more reach while short handles are much lighter. A good in-between is telescoping handles, which extend out to your desired length.
  • Grips – Comfortable, ergonomic grips not mean less sore hands, but also make pruning and cutting much safer.
  • Bumper – A rubber bumper between where the blades meet protects your knuckles from the handles closing all the way together.
  • Weight – Pruning takes a lot of work, even with quality loppers. However, a lightweight pair certainly makes this task a lot easier and more efficient.

One final item of consideration is the popularity of the specific model. Even a great pair of loppers quickly loses its value if replacement parts are difficult to find. Buy from a reputable brand to ensure replacement part availability. Many of the best manufacturers even offer warranties and other guarantees. Additionally, Do It Yourself recommends analyzing your project to make sure loppers are the best tool for the job – not pruning shears or even a hedge trimmer.

Best Lopper Brands

A wide range of different company’s manufacture loppers. But, like any gardening tool, some of these company’s make much higher quality products than others. Here is our shortlist for the best brands:


Fiskars was founded all the way back in 1649 in Finland.

Currently, they’re best known for their scissors (with trademark orange handles), although their product line has expanded to include a wide range of other consumer products.

Among these are numerous tools for gardening, yard care, crafting, sewing, and home improvement, including multiple models of loppers.


Wolf-Garten is another top manufacturer of garden, yard, and home improvement tools. Among their vast collection are lawn mowers, hedge trimmers, and snow blowers. Their products include both manual (hand-powered), electric, and gasoline-powered devices.

In addition to loppers, Wolf-Garten sells shrub shears, shredders, hedge trimmers, tree cutters, hand saws, garden shears, and other tools for trees, shrubs, and hedges.

Tabor Tools

Tabor Tools is yet another well-known and reputable manufacturer of loppers. Not only that, but this brand also sells a range of other pruning, digging, and gardening tools in multiple countries around the world. Ever since they were founded in 1982, Tabor Tools has striven to produce the best quality horticultural equipment available.


Here are the answers to a few of the most frequently asked questions about loppers:

Q: What kind of loppers do I need?

A: The type of loppers you need depends on the project – in particular, the type of plant you plan on pruning and the width of its branches.

Q: What size do I need?

A: The blades must fit around the branches you wish to cut. Longer loppers give you better reach, but they’re typically heavier and more difficult to use.

Q: How to fix broken loppers?

A: Chances are if your loppers are damaged, there are one of two causes: a loose central nut or a bent blade. Tighten the loose central nut with the appropriate tool. Hammer the bent blade back with a hammer on a hard, flat surface.

Q: How to realign the blades?

A: Most loppers use bypass blades (blades that pass by each other, like with scissors). If these become unaligned, you can realign them with the hammer method discussed above. Most loppers also have a central nut that actually allows you to adjust blade clearance.

Q: How long will my loppers last?

A: Clean your loppers before storing them. Oil the blades on occasion to prevent rust. Perform basic repairs as soon as you notice the issue. Never try to cut a branch that’s too large. Do all of these things and your loppers can last a lifetime.

Wrap Up

The best loppers for you depends largely on your needs and preferences. Although the best model varies from person to person, you can’t go wrong with the Fiskars Power Gear 9136.

As Fiskars 25” model, these ultra-sharp, ultra-durable loppers are long enough to provide a lot of reach and leverage but still short enough to use with ease. On top of that, these Fiskars loppers are very lightweight. They have comfortable grips, corrosion-resistant blades, and a bypass blade design.

Any of the loppers reviewed above will work well for beginners and experts alike, so now the choice is yours. Which lopper do you have your eye on? Let us know in the comments.

About Russ Thompson

Hey I'm Russ and I have been a contractor for over 20 years. I know what the cost of having the right tools and materials for the job. My passion for woodworking and helping others by workshops in my wood shop. I have beginner classes all the way up expert trade classes. Check out my bio for more.

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