5 Best Drop Spreader Models 2017 To Try And Things To Consider When Buying One For Your Garden

Learn everything there is to know when buying drop spreaders, how they compare to broadcast spreaders, and the 5 best drop spreader models you can purchase online.

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Keeping your lawn tidy, free of clutter, and leveled requires a lot of hard work. Not only that– you also need sufficient information about the processes involved, attention to detail, and of course, timing. One essential gardening and landscaping tool you might want to consider getting is a spreader.

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A young man uses a drop spreader to scatter seeds across his lawn.

A young man uses a drop spreader to scatter seeds across his lawn.

Spreaders are ingenious machines used to spread seeds, fertilizers, soil, and other gardening elements evenly and with just the right amount across your lawn. Too much of anything can be dangerous. Without a spreader to control the amount of product we lay out, our lawn could get exposed to too much chemicals and die from the toxicity. Meanwhile, if you put too little of these elements, your lawn won’t live up to its maximum potential in terms of nourishment and lushness.

5 Of The Best Drop Spreader Models In The Market

If you’re planning to buy a spreader which is ideal for your lawn type and size, then here are five of the best drop spreader models you can purchase online.

#1 Agri-Fab Pound Max Tow Behind Drop Spreader ( 45-0288 175)

Agri-Fab Pound Max Tow Behind Drop Spreader ( 45-0288 175)

Agri-Fab Pound Max Tow Behind Drop Spreader ( 45-0288 175)

Via Amazon.com

First on our list of best drop spreader models is one of Agri-Fab’s bestsellers-- the tow behind drop spreader. Tow behind drop spreaders are built to allocate seed or fertilizer evenly across the already tilled soil. These type of machines can be operated manually or attached to a tractor or farm-friendly vehicle. Tow behind drop spreaders aren’t just limited to spreading seed and fertilizer. In areas with colder weather conditions and unforgiving winters, these machines can be used to scatter ice onto ice-prone driveways and sidewalks.

You can use a spreader to get rid of ice in a harsh winter.

You can use a spreader to get rid of ice in a harsh winter.

Pros

  • Agri-Fab’s best-selling product is every bit as reliable and durable as the ideal tow behind drop spreader.
  • Not only can it distribute seeds, fertilizer, and ice; it is also capable of spreading peat moss and sand.
  • With a very generous storage capacity for the product, featuring a 175-pound capacity hopper, you can cover up to 40,000 sq.ft. or an acre of ground without stopping for refills.

Cons

  • Agri-Fab’s tow behind drop spreader is said to have a few design flaws that make it harder to operate.
  • To add, it also comes with a hefty price tag, higher than most drop spreader models.

#2 Scotts Turf Builder’s Classic Drop Spreader

Scotts Turf Builder’s Classic Drop Spreader

Scotts Turf Builder’s Classic Drop Spreader

Via Amazon.com

Designed to deliver pinpoint accuracy, the Scotts Turf Builder Drop Spreader assumes every use you could ask for in a drop spreader. With a meager price of $60, here is everything you need to know about the handy lawn equipment.

Pros

  • This machine is built from heavy-duty materials with a high-quality material frame that allows for paramount stability.
  • When maintained in ideal conditions and care, you can use it for a long time.
  • Don’t be fooled by its humble shape and exterior, because its hopper can accommodate lawn products that cover up to 10,000 sq. ft. of ground.
  • Aside from evenly distributing seed and fertilizer, it can also be used in spreading pest control and weed removers.
  • If this is your first ever rodeo in buying a drop spreader, you’re in luck because with this lawn equipment, you will no longer worry about the hassle of assembly, because it arrives fully assembled right in front of your doorstep.
  • Product labels and instructions with easy-to-understand information are also included for you to better understand the mechanics of the machine.

Cons

  • Because the machine’s axle is made from steel, there’s a tendency for it to rust if not properly cared for and cleaned up. Rusting of the wheels could cause a significant downward change in terms of control and ease of operations.
  • It also needs to be recalibrated every couple of years.

#3 Lesco High Wheel Fertilizer Spreader with Manual Deflector

Lesco High Wheel Fertilizer Spreader with Manual Deflector

Lesco High Wheel Fertilizer Spreader with Manual Deflector

Via Amazon.com

A staple in every best drop spreader list, Lesco’s high wheel fertilizer spreader is adorned with good reviews by experienced gardeners who wouldn’t want to settle for anything else. Lesco has always been a leader in lawn equipment, and its esteemed high wheel fertilizer spreader is no exception. Lawn maintenance and landscaping professionals highly swear by this machine for all purposes: spreading granular products to nourish your lawns and keep their roots healthy.

Pros

  • The Lesco high wheel fertilizer spreader with manual deflector can be used to scatter seeds, fertilizer, salt, and other chemicals with ice melting properties for driveways and sidewalks in harsh winters.
  • The machine is equipped with large tires that allow for a smoother operation and optimized stability in most types of terrain.
  • The Lesco drop spreader also boasts main components made of stainless steel– its frame, impeller shaft, and axle– which makes it resistant to oxidation and extreme weather conditions.

Cons

  • There has been some confusion between the 091186 and 091186 model. It is important to note that the 091186 model has been discontinued and replaced by the 101186. This is to allow fresh new updates and features.
  • The Lesco high wheel fertilizer spreader requires a bit of assembly and doesn’t come with a cover.

#4 Precision Products 75-Pound Capacity Deluxe Step-Up Drop Spreader

Precision Products 75-Pound Capacity Deluxe Step-Up Drop Spreader

Precision Products 75-Pound Capacity Deluxe Step-Up Drop Spreader

Via Amazon.com

Precision Products has always been around to provide high-quality lawn equipment at reasonable prices. The products they’ve churned out have always been very simple and straightforward. This particular Precision product lawn equipment have mixed reviews on Amazon, which means it’s definitely not for everybody, but if you’re the type of gardener or mere homeowner who just wants to keep his lawn well-maintained and cared for, this may be the product for you. For its price, however, it’s quite the bargain.

Pros

  • The Precision Products deluxe step-up spreader come with a poly hopper that can carry up to 50-75 pounds of lawn care products.
  • It also has 12-inch plastic poly wheels that don’t rust.
  • The machine is rigged with a very simplistic mechanism, which is perfect for people who just want to get one with lawn maintenance processes.
  • It can evenly scatter seed, fertilizer, and other granular products.
  • It scatters lawn care products without going out of bounds, reducing clean-up efforts after every operation.

Cons

  • The Precision Products deluxe step-up spreader has a few limitations. For one, it doesn’t really work well with peat moss because it can very easily get clogged.

#5 Precision Products 50-Pound Capacity Drop Spreader

Precision Products 50-Pound Capacity Drop Spreader

Precision Products 50-Pound Capacity Drop Spreader

Via Amazon.com

Another Precision Products best-seller, the 50-pound capacity drop spreader, doesn’t differ much to the previous one on this best drop spreader list. The main difference is its hopper capacity. If this is your first time getting a drop spreader to help with your fertilizer and seed scattering, this might just be the perfect product for you.

Pros

  • The Precision Products 50-pound capacity drop spreader is very easy to control and operate.
  • This lawn equipment is mostly made of heavy-duty plastic, which eliminates the risk of oxidation, maintaining its steady performance all-year round.
  • With proper maintenance and care, this drop spreader can last a very long time.
  • This Precision Products machine is also rigged with a fingertip control for automatic activation.

Cons

  • One of the disadvantages when using the Precision Products 50-pound capacity drop spreader is that it doesn’t offer any other applications aside from seed and fertilizer spreading.
  • The risk of it being clogged when accommodated with peat moss is much too high.
  • It also requires a little bit of assembly.

Drop Spreader Vs. Broadcast Spreader

Spreaders come in a variety of models that cater to different lawn types and sizes. The latter ones have advanced spread rate controls that you can adjust according to these lawn variables. There are two types of these machines: the drop spreader and the broadcast spreader. Each of the two has their own pros and cons, as well as specifications. Let us go over them in detail.

Adding the right amount of fertilizer to your lawn will help grow lush, green grass.

Adding the right amount of fertilizer to your lawn will help grow lush, green grass.

Drop Spreaders

This type of spreader allocates fertilizer or seed in rows and is noted for its accuracy. As the name suggests, drop spreaders work by literally dropping the fertilizer or seeds only on the area of ground walked by its operator, usually in an overlapping pattern– one that keeps the coverage even and avoids striping. When you’re looking to get the best drop spreader on the market, look for one with adjustable degrees of seed or fertilizer allocation and is easy to operate and control even on lawns with difficult and tight spots. Most drop spreaders are resistant to the wind, which means that these weather conditions do not weaken their performance.

Manually spreading the fertilizer is a tedious job. Thus, use fertilizer spreader instead.

Manually spreading the fertilizer is a tedious job. Thus, use fertilizer spreader instead.

Ideal for lawns with sizes of 5000 sq. ft. and under, drop spreaders are for lawn owners who value precision more than coverage. These machines are also much more low-maintenance in terms of clean-up. Drop spreaders can still be utilized in bigger lawns, but because it covers less area for every lap, the experience, together with the increased period of time spent, can get really laborious.

A lawn this vast could use the efficiency of a broadcast spreader.

A lawn this vast could use the efficiency of a broadcast spreader.

Broadcast Spreaders

This other type of spreader is used in larger lawns, ones that are above 5000 sq. ft. in size. Broadcast spreaders distribute seeds in a fanlike pattern, providing more coverage in less time. This makes it much easier to distribute seed or fertilizer in lawn spaces that are hard to reach. It also stores more of the product, which significantly reduces refilling efforts.

Since broadcast spreaders have a much larger coverage as compared to drop spreaders, they have a tendency to spread out of bounds, wasting product in the process.

Important Things To Look For In A Drop Spreader

Before proceeding with the 5 best drop spreader models and their reviews, let us first get to know what attributes that constitute an ideal drop spreader. We will then use these factors as criteria for our drop spreader reviews. When scouting the market online or offline, it is important that you have enough information about what to look for. You don’t want to make a mindless purchase and fall for aggressive sales pitches.

A drop spreader is the best choice when spreading fertilizer on your garden.

A drop spreader is the best choice when spreading fertilizer on your garden.

Performance

A pretty self-explanatory factor on this list, the drop spreader that you should choose must perform well specifically on the type of lawn you have. If you want to prolong your spreader peak performance, then it is a good idea to look for heavy-duty materials that are resistant to corrosion and extreme weather conditions such as stainless steel and durable plastic. Rust is one of the most common factors that impair the performance of a drop spreader.

Variety Of Applications

The most basic application for a drop spreader is scattering seed and fertilizer evenly across your lawn, but for added efficiency, it should not be limited to just those two. The best drop spreader models of today can be used to prevent and remove ice from sidewalks, pavements, and driveways during tricky winter situations. In addition, you can also use these lawn equipment to distribute granular substances, which enhance the lushness of your grass and keep those pesky weeds away. Hoppers should also be able to hold sand for other landscaping and construction purposes.

Durability

Durability is one of the most important components in a typical sales pitch, but how do we really know whether or not you’re being scammed? The answer lies in the material of the drop spreader. For one, the wheels and axle should be made from heavy-duty corrosion-resistant materials that are also insusceptible to extreme weather and terrain conditions.

This drop spreader has wheels made of durable plastic.

This drop spreader has wheels made of durable plastic.

Conclusion

With the many different features and controls incorporated in a drop spreader, it’s difficult to choose which ones to purchase and to do away with. Knowing the difference between a drop and broadcast spreader sure does help a lot. In addition, knowing what qualities to look for speeds up the process of deciding which model to buy. Personally, I would recommend the Scotts Turf Builder Classic Drop Spreader. It is reliable and with incredible features. I also like the fact that it has easy-to-understand instructions for newbie gardeners.

We hope you find this comprehensive guide to your advantage. Share with us your thoughts and help create a friendly yet helpful gardening community! Thanks for reading!

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Lucy M. Clark
 

Hi there! I’m Lucy, and I’m a self-confessed garden fanatic. Gardening has always been a passion of mine and will always be my favorite pastime. Now that I am married and have one adorable son, I have the time to write and share my personal experiences with other garden enthusiasts like me.

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