Trimming the edges of your yard is an integral part of any lawn care routine. Your mower does the bulk of the work, but trimming those edges just right is something that only the finesse and precision of a weed eater can handle.
The problem with weed eaters, though, is that they’re a bit awkward to handle. They can be hard to balance, and using one for an extended period of time can result in back and shoulder pain.
At HY-C, we developed a solution to that problem: the Zero Gravity Weight Absorbing Trimmer Strap from our Good Vibrations outdoor power equipment upgrades product line.
In this guide, we’ll take you through the pros and cons of the Zero Gravity. We’ll explain which makes and models of weed wackers it can attach to, how to attach it, how it can make lawn trimming easier, and even a few caveats to look out for.
By the time you’re finished here, you’ll know everything — both good and bad — that you need to know about the Zero Gravity to decide whether or not you should add one to your lawn care tool kit.
Three Pros of the Zero Gravity Weed Eater Strap
1. It Alleviates Back and Shoulder Pain
Using a weed eater can be awkward. With the motor on one end, the trimmer head and housing on the other, and nothing but a lightweight shaft attaching them, the weight of the equipment is usually distributed unevenly.
This can mean that, especially when used over an extended period, a weed eater can put a lot of strain on your back and shoulder muscles, leaving you in pain after you’re finished trimming.
The Zero Gravity makes trimmers feel 75% lighter. Its bungee system not only helps to stabilize the trimmer for maximum control, but it also absorbs the weight of the equipment, taking the strain off your back and shoulders. Its padded shoulder strap helps to alleviate pressure and pain from the weight of the trimmer, too.
2. It’s Universal
It doesn’t matter if you have a weed eater from Stihl, ECHO, Ryobi, Husqvarna, Milwaukee, or any other manufacturer — the Zero Gravity is designed to fit any make and model of weed eater on the market, past or present.
All weed eaters are essentially just a pole with a motor and trigger on one end, and the trimmer head on the other end. The Zero Gravity comes with a clamp (that we call the Shaft Loop) that tightens and loosens with a wingnut.
All you have to do to install the strap is attach the Shaft Loop to your weed eater, tighten the wingnut, and hook the rest of the strap onto your trimmer by way of a carabiner (that’s also included with the kit).
3. It Makes Trimming Easier
The Zero Gravity isn’t just designed to alleviate the physical pain of using your trimmer. When it’s installed correctly, it should help you trim faster and more efficiently, too.
Similarly to a self-propelled lawn mower, with a Zero Gravity, all you should have to do to trim effectively is let your trimmer hang, pull its trigger, and walk the length of your yard’s edge. The trimmer will leave a perfectly-cut edge behind you as you go.
The trick to this is getting the height of your trimmer right. The Zero Gravity uses a backpack-style adjustable strap for tightening and loosening. You should be able to find the perfect height for your trimmer and lawn after a little trial and error.
Three Cons of the Zero Gravity Weed Eater Strap
1. It Takes Some Getting Used to
The Zero Gravity is a simple item, but using it requires a change in habits and muscle memory. Holding a weed eater is a bit like riding a bike — you never forget how to use it. But to use the Zero Gravity, you have to let the weight of the trimmer hang a bit and let the strap do the work. That can be a challenge.
It’s not uncommon to start using a Zero Gravity strap, only to hoist the trimmer up to where you’re used to holding it. This puts the weight and pressure of the trimmer back on your shoulders and back, eliminating the purpose of the strap altogether.
If you decide to try one, stay cognizant of letting the strap do the work for you. Work on adjusting it to the correct height, and allow it to hang while you trim. Eventually, you’ll get the hang of it.
2. The Shoulder Strap May Slip
The padded shoulder strap of the Zero Gravity is a bit of a blessing and a curse. When used correctly, it’s ultra-comfortable, and it helps to distribute the weight of your weed eater across your shoulders. At its worst, though, the padding will slip, and the smaller, unpadded portion of the strap will dig into your neck and shoulders.
This happens because where the adjustable section of the strap meets the bungee-action system, there’s nothing to hold the strap in place. This is what allows the strap to be adjustable in the first place. At the same time, though, it’s also what causes the shoulder padding to slip.
The best way to solve this problem is to take your time, and to get ahead of these slips when you feel them starting. Shrugging your shoulders and maneuvering the padding back into place will help to keep you trimming comfortably.
3. The Shaft Loop Connection Point May Come Loose
The Shaft Loop is the linchpin of the Zero Gravity strap system. It’s the bridge between your weed eater and the rest of the strap, securing everything tightly in place with its wingnut fastener.
The problem is that, over time, that wingnut can loosen, either through the vibration from your trimmer or from accidental bumps and pushes. If the Shaft Loop connection loosens too much, your entire trimmer can slip, mid-use.
To avoid this, remind yourself to check the tightness of your wingnut before and after using your weed eater. Building this habit may take a bit, but it will ensure your Zero Gravity stays secure and connected to your trimmer every time.
Should You Get a Zero Gravity Weed Eater Strap?
Back pain from your weed eater can often be the most frustrating part of lawn care. The Zero Gravity exists to alleviate this problem, making trimming your yard more comfortable and enjoyable.
But, should you get one for yourself?
If your lawn care doesn’t include much trimming or you don’t even have a weed eater, the answer to that question is pretty simple.
But if you have a string trimmer and it’s been causing you problems, you can’t go wrong with a Zero Gravity. They run about $20 – $30 at retail (depending where you purchase yours), they’re universal, and they’ll help make your weed eater much easier to use.
They take some getting used to, and they can slip if they become loose, but a few preventative measures can help you stay on top of these potential problems. If you’re looking for a better trimming experience, give one a try. They’re a great, useful tool to add to your lawn care toolbox.