The Best Garden Vacuums For Quick & Easy Cleanups

Easily clear leaves and other debris with our handpicked selection of petrol, electric and battery-powered garden vacuums.
Tried & Tested: See Our Testing ↓
Written & Tested By: Archie Rich | Updated:
Best Garden Vacuum
Archie Rich/DIY Works
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Unlike leaf blowers that simply blow leaves and other debris into a pile, a garden vacuum saves the strain of having to pick it all up manually. A few years back, they used to be seen as a luxury tool but they have since dropped significantly in price and these days, you can usually pick up a feature-packed garden vacuum at a relatively affordable price.

To assist you in selecting a garden vacuum, our handpicked selection lists top-performing models, chosen based on our first-hand experience using multiple vacuums that are electric, battery and petrol-powered. Our testing and up-to-date research further ensure the quality of our recommendations.

VonHaus Electric Leaf Vacuum & Blower
Best Value: VonHaus Electric Leaf Vacuum & Blower
Flymo PowerVac 3000 3-in-1
Best All-Rounder: Flymo PowerVac 3000 3-in-1
Greenworks GD40BVK2X Leaf Vac
Best Cordless: Greenworks GD40BVK2X Leaf Vac
Stihl SH 56 Vacuum Shredder
Best Petrol: Stihl SH 56 Vacuum Shredder
Einhell Power X-Change VENTURRO
Best Budget Cordless: Einhell Power X-Change VENTURRO
McCulloch GBV 322 VX
Best Budget Petrol: McCulloch GBV 322 VX

How The DIY Works Team Tests & Rates Garden Vacuums

After using a garden vacuum for the first time many years ago, I have never looked back since and always tend to use the machine where possible. Although using a garden rake will do the job, it requires more hassle and it takes much longer too.

Therefore, as we maintain several gardens of properties that we manage (Airbnb’s and rentals), we’ve had the pleasure of trying and testing multiple garden vacuums.

Whether we are vacuuming a pile of dead leaves or we’ve been using a hedge trimmer to cut down a conifer, they can be used in several applications.

best garden blower vacuum

Archie Rich/DIY Works

As you can see in the photo above of the Stihl machine that we have been testing, the mulching functionality is a great benefit of many modern machines. This is because it allows you to store more in the collection bag and it also makes it easier to compost or empty it into garden waste bags.

During our ongoing testing, we analyse the machine’s performance, build quality, usability and its ability to vacuum, blow and mulch.

To keep up our commitment to reviewing and testing the latest garden vacuums (for this article), we are continually testing the latest machines from top brands in the UK. This means that when we notice a brand has released a new and improved model, we will attempt to buy it and put it to the test where applicable.

best garden vacuum uk

Archie Rich/DIY Works
best cordless garden vacuum

Archie Rich/DIY Works

As well as our testing and experience using multiple machines, we also based our recommendations on the latest research and several factors. Some of the factors that we considered included the machine’s functionality (blowing, vacuuming and mulching), performance, build quality, usability, shredding ratio, speed settings, vacuum bag, supplied accessories, warranty and value.

The Best Garden Vacuums

At DIY Works, our content is 100% independent and we would never recommend a product that we wouldn't use ourselves (read our editorial standards and how we test products).

1. Best Value: VonHaus Electric Leaf Vacuum & Blower

(How We Review →)

By far the most popular garden vacuum available in the UK is the VonHaus 3000, which is a budget-friendly machine that’s full of functionality. When compared to other cheap examples on the market, this machine is built to a much higher standard and is also able to vacuum, blow and mulch debris ready for composting or putting into a bag.

Pros
  • Offers great value for the money
  • Features an extra long 10 metre power cable
  • During testing, we found the shoulder strap helped us use the machine for extended periods
  • Backed by an impressive 3 year warranty
  • Shreds garden debris with ease (10:1 ratio)
  • Front wheels help to keep the machine close to the floor without dragging
  • Relatively lightweight at 3.56 KG
Cons
  • The 35 litre collection bag is much smaller than other machines

It’s clear to see why the VonHaus 3000 is the most popular machine on the market because it ticks all the boxes. It’s the brand’s new and improved model with many new features such as the shoulder strap and wheels that really do help to make it easier to use. Apart from the small collection bag (which may not be an issue), it’s the best value garden vacuum.

2. Best All-Rounder: Flymo PowerVac 3000 3-in-1

(How We Review →)

Another popular garden vacuum is the Flymo PowerVac but unlike the VonHaus alternative above, it’s a more premium option to consider. For the additional cost of the machine, it comes with additional features and performance such as variable speed control, a 16:1 shredding ratio, a larger 45-litre collection bag and a more powerful motor.

Pros
  • During testing, we found the tool-less changeover of attachments very easy to switch
  • Suction capacity of 168 l/s
  • Features a 10 metre long power cable
  • Relatively lightweight at 5.2 KG
  • Variable speed control for additional control
  • Backed by a two year warranty (when registered)
  • Large 45 litre collection bag
  • Supplied with a shoulder strap
Cons
  • One of the most expensive corded machines on the market

To conclude, the Flymo PowerVac is a great option to consider for medium to large gardens and although more expensive than most corded alternatives, it’s worth the added investment for its performance and features. It’s worth pointing out that if you choose this machine, make sure that you register it with Flymo for the full 2-year warranty.

3. Best Cordless: Greenworks GD40BVK2X Leaf Vac

(How We Review →)

If you don’t want to be restricted by a power cable and require a cordless garden vacuum, the Greenworks brand has the answer. Known as the GD40BVK2X model, it’s the brand’s new and improved garden vacuum that’s designed to work quietly and provide you with maximum control thanks to the selection of six-speed settings.

Pros
  • Supplied with two 40V 2Ah lithium batteries
  • Easily changes from a blower to vacuum
  • During testing, we were very impressed by it's quiet operation and the reduced vibration
  • Backed by a 3 year warranty
  • Ergonomic handle for added comfort
  • Shredding ratio of 10:1
  • Large collection bag (45 litres)
  • Relatively lightweight for a cordless garden vacuum (only 4 KG)
Cons
  • Relatively expensive when compared to the alternatives

To conclude, the Greenworks GD40BVK2X is the best cordless garden vacuum on the market that provides great performance and is designed with the user in mind. Although expensive, it’s a worthwhile investment and if you are in the market for other Greenworks tools, the batteries can be used across their range of cordless tools.

4. Best Petrol: Stihl SH 56 Vacuum Shredder

(How We Review →)

Whether you are a professional or gardening enthusiast that wants the ultimate garden vacuum, look no further than the Stihl SH 56. It’s a petrol-powered blower and vacuum that’s designed to be powerful yet economical.

Compared to previous versions of this vacuum, this new and improved model now features a semi-automatic choke and stop switch for smoother starts. It’s also able to automatically reset to the starting position to prevent it from flooding too.

Pros
  • More control thanks to its variable speed control
  • Desirable manual fuel pump that's activated at the press of a thumb
  • Built to the highest of standards
  • Built-in shoulder strap so that you can comfortably work for longer
  • Large 45 litre collection bag
Cons
  • Most expensive garden vacuum within our roundup

Although expensive, the Stihl 56 is a professional garden vacuum and blower that’s built to the highest of standards and would have no problem being used all day every day. As it’s a petrol machine, you won’t need any extension leads or even have to worry about the charge of your battery, you can just use it as much as you want.

5. Best Budget Cordless: Einhell Power X-Change VENTURRO

(How We Review →)

If you want a cordless garden vacuum but your budget doesn’t stretch as far as the Greenworks machine, the Einhell VENTURRO is worth considering. Although it isn’t as high performing, it still has more than enough power to vacuum all your garden debris and then shred it down to a tenth of its volume with ease.

Pros
  • Supplied with a battery and 45 litre collection box
  • During testing, we really liked the extra handle as it allowed us to switch our grip for additional comfort
  • Integrated carry strap for comfortable use
  • Lightweight as it weighs just 3 KG
  • Intuitive wall mount that makes storing it away simple
  • Dual wheels at the end of the suction pipe for moving the vacuum across your garden
Cons
  • Not as powerful or feature-packed as some of the alternative cordless machines

To conclude, the Einhell VENTURRO is a cheap yet high-quality cordless garden vacuum that certainly won’t disappoint. It does lack some performance and features but for simply vacuuming dead leaves and other garden debris, you can’t go wrong with this cordless machine.

6. Best Budget Petrol: McCulloch GBV 322 VX

(How We Review →)

Petrol-powered garden vacuums are well-known for being expensive but McCulloch has gone against the norm and offers a budget-friendly petrol machine. Known as the GBV 322 VX, it uses a 26cc engine that provides plenty of performance for blowing and vacuuming your entire garden.

Pros
  • Only weighs 4.5 KG, which is relatively light for a petrol machine
  • Supplied with a large 45 litre collection bag
  • Mulch ratio of 16:1
  • Uses the brand's "Sure Fire Start" for easy starting of the petrol engine
  • Soft grip handles that are comfortable to hold for long periods
  • Features a new and improved anti-vibration system
Cons
  • Not built to the high standards of other professional petrol garden vacuums

If you require a budget-friendly petrol garden vacuum, the McCulloch GBV 322 VX is a great option to consider. Its popularity is a clear indication of how good it actually is and there isn’t much to dislike about it. It isn’t going to be built to the same standard as other professional petrol machines but for domestic use, it’s perfect.

Garden Vacuum Buying Guide

Fallen leaves that are left untouched not only look untidy but also make paths or drives slippery and even make lawns become waterlogged.

However, the problem is that tidying your garden manually with traditional gardening tools can be a difficult task. Luckily, the use of a garden vacuum with a blower and mulching function makes clearing up any garden debris far easier. Simply blow away the leaves and debris into one pile, suck it up with the vacuum and let the shredder cut it into tiny pieces ready for composting or emptying into a garden waste bin.

To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below guide regarding garden vacuums.

3-in-1 Functionality

Due to technological advancements, most motors can power up the blowing, vacuuming and shredding functionality. We highly recommend opting for a garden vacuum that does each function as it will allow you to tidy up far more efficiently. It is rare to find a garden vacuum that only acts as a vacuum as the majority include the blower and shredder functionality.

Types of Vacuums

As with most gardening tools that feature a motor, you have the choice of an electric or petrol-powered motor.

The electric models are the best option for most people as they simply plug in and go. They are also far lighter and easier to use but do have the drawback of requiring a power supply. If you have a medium to large-sized garden, you will want to ensure the cable length is long enough and that you have an outdoor extension lead available.

Petrol power vacuums are less common and more suited towards professional gardeners and large gardens. They have the added benefit of additional power and can easily suck up large volumes of leaves and debris. However, the main drawback is that it will require maintenance over the years and the initial cost is far greater.

Shredding Capabilities

To help dispose of the leaves and debris that you have vacuumed, most will shred them into tiny pieces. However, some garden vacuums perform better than others as they can shred the debris into even smaller pieces. This means less emptying of the collection bag and less room required within the waste/compost bins.

Most manufacturers will state a shredding ratio with many ranging from 10:1 to 16:1. Smaller shredded debris will take up less room in the collection bag, which means less emptying.

Collection Bag

An essential component of any garden vacuum is the collection bag. The majority range from 30 to 50 litres in size and simply collect all the debris that has been sucked up by the vacuum. The larger the bag, the longer you can carry on clearing debris without emptying but it does make it slightly heavier.

Debris To Avoid

Powerful garden vacuums can pick up far more than just leaves or cut grass and should be used with caution. For example, if you were to suck up small stones or pebbles, this may break the shredding system.

Depending upon the vacuum you purchase, you may not even be able to suck up wet leaves or other debris. This is because it may clog up the shredder or tube.

Conclusion

Purchasing the best garden vacuum you can get your hands on can make a huge difference to your garden maintenance. Clearing wet leaves, cut grass and other debris can be fairly difficult with traditional tools but luckily, the price of garden vacuums has dropped significantly, thus making them more affordable.

All of the recommendations above are suitable for a range of budgets and all feature a blower, vacuum and shredder. Once you have used a garden vacuum once, you’ll never look to go back to manually picking up debris again.

If you require further information regarding our garden vacuum recommendations, feel free to get in touch and we will try to provide our assistance where possible.

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