Echo SRM-225 Gas-Powered Trimmer Review
In my experience, trimming is the part of lawn care most people neglect. (Specifically, I'm talking to those who have a lawn care business, but also to home owners who take their lawns seriously.) They think they can simply run the old mower over the lawn and "presto"—it will look like the lawn care service just did it. They can't ever figure out why it doesn't look as good as the neighbor's, who has the lawn service come by every week.
Trimming is the first thing I will do when I pull up to a job. Right away, I reach for my Echo SRM-225 and start making a mess. I have used cheaper trimmers and have suffered because of it. Though at the time, I didn't know just how much I was suffering.
If you mow lawns for a living, for a side income, or have a good-sized yard yourself, you'll need the right equipment. In this article, I will share my experience with this trimmer and tell you why I think it is the most important tool you will have in your lawn care arsenal.
It's Worth Every Cent
The money you would save getting the cheaper trimmers is not worth it in the end. When you are making money using the trimmer, you will find yourself testing the limits of quality with it. I have tested my Echo SRM-225 to the limit on lawns that are more like small jungles. When you are waist deep in tall grass and trying to do a clean up for a new customer, your equipment is your best friend.
Quality equipment makes an impossible job hard and a hard job easier. And a trimmer is the key tool you will be using from day to day to make a lawn look like it was done by someone who is getting paid. In other words: a professional.
The Echo SRM-225 is well designed and durable. The feature of having an easy line feed alone will save you the time and effort that make it worth getting. The engine and components are made to last and run for a long time.
Echo SRM-225's Best Feature
If you have a lawn care business, maybe you only have nice cushy jobs that barely have any grass to mow. Not me. I get calls and customers who have neglected their lawns for a long time by the time they have called me. As my business goes on, I have to do less of these clean-ups, but rest assured there will always be that clean-up nightmare job.
The Echo trimmer at this point is a life saver, as the first thing you are going to do is start trimming all around the edges of the yard. Also, if the grass is too long, you will have to even trim the whole yard before mowing. This sounds nice, but if you have done it before, you know that it means a mess. Stuff flying everywhere: some of it hard, some of it gooey and gross, some of it even hurts a bit.
What you don't want to have happen is the string on the trimmer getting twisted up and tangled inside the nozzle. You don't want the string to hide inside the nozzle and not come out. And you don't want to spend 15 minutes trying to tie the cord around the trimmer nozzle re-feeding the thing.
Well, the Echo SRM-225 has the best feature you could ask for when it comes to a trimmer. When you run out of string, you simply cut your new string off and align the trimmer's nozzle head with some arrows built into the head. You then push the string through the head out the other side, and pull the string from both ends of the head until it's even. Finally, twist the head until the string is fed into the nozzle head, and you are ready to get back to work. This takes about three minutes in its entirety and has not failed me after about 200 jobs now.
How I Met the Echo SRM-225
I have had three different lawn care businesses—a total of four seasons. The one I presently work for is going on its second season or year. Last season, when I decided to start up the lawn care business again, I went shopping for equipment.
I didn't have that much money to spend, so I had to be smart and get good deals. I ended up getting a Craftsman self-propelled mower that was probably about four years old for $150. I found a good deal on an Echo handheld blower that was about three years old for $75.
At first, I went cheap and bought a curved-shafted Murray Trimmer for $80 new. This turned out to be a mistake, as I couldn't trim in a straight line because of the curved shaft. And it just ran crummy, even though it was new. Really, you need a straight-shafted trimmer that you can turn sideways and make a straight line along the edge of the lawn. Often, this can substitute for using an edger.
I ended up selling the Murray and decided I was going to go and look at nicer trimmers. I was thinking I would get the Craftsman trimmer, which was one step up from the cheapest. At the store, I saw the Echo trimmer and thought it would be really nice to have. The salesman said I should go with the Echo if I had a lawn care business. He showed me the easy line feed feature, which allows you to change the string with ease, so you can keep working without a long delay. Even though I thought it was out of my budget, I knew I needed a quality trimmer to work my business, so I ended up buying it and have been grateful ever since.
Why Having a Good Trimmer Is So Important
Regular people out there—who may have some old mower and some rusted electric trimmer that they can't figure out how to feed the string into—don't use trimmers. They simply get the mower out and run over the lawn and call it good. They may not even bag the grass and often don't blow off the sidewalks and driveways afterwards. Now there are exceptions of course, some people even take it too far and put me to shame.
That's the key to why they are paying you, though. Because you know how to feed the string into your trimmer, and you have a blower to clean up the mess afterwards. If you can turn the trimmer sideways and make some straight lines and make a nice clean look to a yard, then they will be impressed and think you even know what you are doing. What I'm saying here is having a quality trimmer and equipment will do the work for you.
Another thing is that the trimming part of the lawn care is the hardest part usually. It's the part of the work that people can't do in shorts, a t-shirt, and flip-flops. When all those items start flying at them, they give up trimming and skip to the mowing. I've done hundreds of jobs over the years, and I have likely spent half this time using the trimmer. Trimming is the majority of lawn care work.
So getting the Echo SRM-225 trimmer is well worth the money, even if you are simply using it for your own lawn and not a business. If you do have a business, you will regret getting anything less.