Received this unit one month ago and I have now used it twice (right after receiving it and again today). Normally one would not need to use an aerator at this frequency but with the soil being so hard it seemed appropriate to do so this time around. The unit is very well made, nicely finished and easy to put together. This is my second tow-behind aerator. My first one pales in comparison to this John Deere unit. The metal for the JD is much thicker. The unit raises and lowers very easy, even when loaded with lots of weight, and pulls very easy. It does not bump around like my last unit and is hardly noticeable when towing in aerator mode or just towing to and from storage. Things to note: the large air filled tires, two extra gussets to help keep the axle rigid, easy lift for raising and lowering and heavy duty metal construction. Yes, it does cost more but it's worth every penny of the addition cost.
This is a very handy unit to have around if you have a large yard that is prone to compaction. A sand-silt-clay soil is best...want to avoid soils with rocks or pebbles as they either bend/break the aerators or plug the ends. Also, a yard where you can keep going forward is best. If you have to cross a driveway a lot, you have to get off, raise the unit, cross, drop the unit, repeat...bit of a pain.
I lined the tray with vapour barrier, put a board across the centre...got two pieces of bent rebar for handles. Filled weight tray with concrete, and inserted two handles. Now I have two weights (~60-70lbs each). Could probably get away with less weight on thick organic soils.
It makes a world of difference aerating once a year in early spring. Once aerated, then fertilize and reseed. Can even topcoat with some more soil if your keen.
Took one star off only because one cannot change height on the fly...
It is built well. I used bags of sand for weight and it worked great! It’s best to have 2 people to assemble it….but I’m a woman…64…..and managed to get it together alone, but it would’ve been easier with another set of hands.
This thing did a great job on my 3/4 acre back yard. No more waiting on unreliable landscape types to get back to me and no more shoddy jobs hitting the dry/dead spots or running over my sprinklers. I will also make some sweet coin off the neighbors renting this from me for 1/2 what they pay the landscapers!
Quality exceeded my expectations ... Worked just as I expected,...
October 23, 2020
Quality exceeded my expectations ... Worked just as I expected, then I over-seeded, looks great ... just make sure as they state, that your soil is moist, and select the weight to give you good penetration for plug removal.
This tow behind aerator was fairly easy to put together once I received all the parts. The manufacture quickly sent the missing hardware. This aerator is well built and although I haven't used it yet I'm sure it will be fine.
This is a solid John Deere product, but when it arrived via UPS, it was missing the entire "bag of parts" needed to assemble the aerator, as well as the manual/paperwork. For the increased price I paid for a John Deere, I expected better! The aerator is actually manufactured by the Brinly-Hardy Company and when I contacted Home Depot, they referred me directly to them. The Brinly-Hardy customer service team was very responsive and I had what I needed within a few days. Overall, I would recommend the product, but the extra steps I had to go through to get what I needed, lowered the value of this product to "average".