Brush Cutting Tips


A Billy Goat walk behind brush cutter is an easier, faster and more powerful than a hand-held cutter, but they still take more care to operate than a walk-behind mower. These tips will help you use your equipment safely and effectively.

Wear the Right Gear

Having the right PPE is a must when using any small engine equipment, and this is no exception. Non-slip shoes and clothing that isn’t too loose fitting will lessen the chance of slipping or getting hung up on branches during operation, while eye protection will help protect against ricochets. Hearing protection is also a good idea since the engine will be producing enough noise to cause hearing damage over extended use periods.

Work at the Right Time

Always work when there’s plenty of daylight and the ground is dry. This doesn’t just make it easy for the blade to cut through plant matter, it also means you won’t have mud to slip on.

Do a Walk-through

Before you start cutting, look around the area for low stumps, trash, rocks and other obstacles that could damage your brush cutter or turn into a dangerous projectile when it meets the cutter’s blade. Even if the deflectors stop the object, the impact can dent the housing. Mark any stationary objects so you can avoid them, keeping in mind the maximum branch widths your model will cut. If your brushcutter can handle saplings that are up to two inches wide and you try to cut a three-inch wide trunk, you’ll only bind up the blade, damaging it and stressing the drivetrain components in the process.

Clear the Area

If something does get tossed out by the cutter, it can damage equipment and hurt people and animals in the area. Make sure pets, children, cars, and anything else fragile is away from the cutting area before you start work. It’s well worth taking a minute or two to move your vehicle out of the way if it means you don’t have to replace window glass.

Start High

If you have an adjustable height cutter and you’re not familiar with the area you’re cutting, go over it with the deck set at or near the maximum height. Once the top layer of growth has been removed, you can see how low it’s safe to trim.

Overlap and Slow Down

Cutting smaller swaths will improve your cutter’s performance. On heavy growths, using half of your brushcutter’s deck width at a time will get the best finish. If the cut is uneven, slow down so the blade has more time to cut.

Mow Across the Sides of Slopes

Side slope cutting will make the brushcutter easier to manage, it will be less likely to roll off, and if it does tip, it won’t fall on you. If you have a model with front casters, lock them into place to keep the cutter tracking straight.

Keep Your Equipment in Top Condition

Is a worn blade or a loose belt keeping your brushcutter from performing at its best? When you need parts for your Billy Goat equipment, visit We’re a certified dealer for Billy Goat, Honda Small Engines, and Briggs & Stratton so we can provide you with everything you need for your equipment and the engine that powers it. We ship across the U.S. and Canada.

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