The Log Splitter 2024 Buyer’s Guide

We really hope that you love the products that we recommend. Just so you know, ToolsReview may collect a share of sales or be compensated through the links on this page, but we think it’s a fair trade for the long hours of research that we put in.

Log Splitters Buyers Guide

If you are looking to reduce the amount of time it takes you to prepare and split your wood then the purchase you need to make is a log splitter! A log splitter is the perfect machine for anyone that is regularly splitting logs and pieces of wood, usually to be used on wood burners or fire pits. With so many UK homes now regularly enjoying the use of a wood burning stove, there is a massive increase in the amount of wood that is needed for fuel. Of course, you can always purchase pre-cut wood, but this is going to be considerably more expensive. If you are willing to split the wood yourself you can get some great bargains!

Your two options for splitting wood are with a splitting axe or a log splitter. We have found log splitters to be reliable, time efficient and cost effective too, so this article will look at some of the best models we have found.

Best Pick Log Splitter

Forest Master FM8D-TC Electric Log Splitter - Small to Medium Wood Burners - Pre-Filled Ready for Use - CE/UKCA Compliant Workbench and Guard - 5 Ton Splitting Force
  • COMPACT AND POWERFUL: 5-ton log splitter with a compact size and impressive power-to-size ratio.
  • CUSTOM MIX HYDRAULIC OIL: Pre-filled with Forest Master Custom Mix Hydraulic Oil for improved performance.
  • HEAVY-DUTY DESIGN: Reinforced moving carriage and sturdy pusher block for reliable and precise log splitting.
  • ENHANCED SAFETY: Button and lever operation, along with a UKCA/CE compliant work bench and guard, ensure safe usage in compliance with regulations.

Last update on 2024-04-23 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Only Got 5 Minutes?

If you are feeling the cold and need to get building your fire as soon as possible, or are sick of paying out for pre-cut logs, then here is where you need to look for all the most important information to get you on the way with splitting your own logs!

Why Purchase a Log Splitter?

We understand that the expense of purchasing a log splitter can seem like a considerable one – especially if you have only recently forked out for a wood burner or a fire pit for your home. However, a log splitter is much safer and easier to use than an axe when it comes to splitting wood, as you simply secure the piece of wood, then pull a lever or press a button to split the log. Even lower-spec models can cut up to around 70 logs an hour, so just imagine what the electric and petrol models can do! Equally, paying for pre-cut logs can be very expensive, especially if you are hoping to use your wood burner regularly to warm a large part of your house! Purchasing large logs, or even going out and collecting ones that are not needed from trees that have been felled, will save you a huge amount of money within a short space of time! 

If you are thinking that possibly a log splitter isn’t for you, then why not look at some of the best splitting axes available instead?

Types of Log Splitter

There are some main things that you need to look for when purchasing a log splitter to make sure that you purchase the one that is right for you. Some models are quite expensive so you are going to want one that will last and will do the job!

Manual, electric or petrol log splitters

Manual, electric and petrol are your three options in terms of powering your log splitter. There are pros and cons of them all so it really depends on the size and type of logs you are going to be working with, and also how frequently you are going to be splitting logs. 

As a general rule, manual log splitters are for working on much smaller logs, so could mean that you have to chop the logs first before putting them into your log splitter if you purchase ones too large for the machine. However, there are some models on the market that can work with bigger logs (providing you have the strength to operate the machine!!) They will also be considerably cheaper and require less maintenance than petrol models. 

Electric log splitters are really the halfway compromise between petrol and manual. Being powered by electric means that there is a lot less work for you to do and also that you will be able to work with larger logs. They are also cheaper than most petrol models and require less maintenance. However electric models will need to be used close to a power source, so you need to consider if you have a power source close to where you are working, or if you are prepared to purchase a generator of some kind to work from further away (which will obviously then be an extra cost!). 

Petrol models remove the issue of having to work close to a power source, so you will be able to situate your log splitter anywhere, but there are disadvantages too. Petrol models will be noisier, more expensive and require a lot more maintenance but are also much more powerful so will even be able to split larger green logs.

If you are splitting smaller or average-sized logs and are working close to home then a relatively cheap electric or manual log splitter will be more than sufficient, and we are sure you will see the benefit of your purchase. However, if you are going to be cutting large, fresh logs then we would definitely recommend going for a petrol model. 

Best Budget Log Splitters

Sale
Sealey LS450H Log Firewood Splitter Breaking Foot Operated Unit-Horizontal New
  • Features:Simple to use, splits firewood easily
  • Each step on the foot pedal exerts a splitting force of up to 1
  • 2tonne
  • Foot pedal adjusts to suit user
  • Constructed from heavy-duty steel, is lightweight and portable

Last update on 2024-04-23 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Hydraulic or Kinetic 

In times gone by hydraulic was always the chosen method for log splitter, however, this is quickly changing for kinetic flywheel models. These don’t need oil so require less maintenance and they are also quicker as you are not waiting for the hydraulic arm to reset before you can start working again. 

Tonnes of pressure

The tonnes of pressure that your log splitter offers will determine the strength of the wood that you are able to cut through. Log splitters tend to range between 5 and 10 tonnes (for average-sized, domestic models). People can often be misled into thinking the greater the tonne the bigger the piece of wood that you will be able to split, however, this isn’t always the case. We have come across numerous models that have lower tonnes of pressure but are able to cut bigger logs.

Size 

Remember to consider the size of your log splitter – especially if you are planning on moving it to different locations. Many will come off their stand so this helps to break them down when not in use, but otherwise, log splitters do not tend to “fold-down” much more than this. Look at the size of your tool and where you are going to be using it and storing it, as some models are very large and will become a real burden, taking up a lot of space, when not in use. 

Weight 

Many log splitters can be very heavy, particularly petrol models, so it is important to consider the weight of your log splitter if you are planning on moving it around between jobs. It is rare that someone will have the space to leave their log splitter out between jobs, but equally, if you are splitting logs weekly for your home then you will need it to be easy to move into position and then as easy to put away afterwards!  

Size of log

Different log splitters will be designed to work with different sizes of logs. Some electric, domestic models can work with logs as big as 460mm in length and 600mm in diameter. Whereas others are as little as 300mm in length and 250mm in diameter. Petrol models have a lot more power so can go up to as big as 1040mm in length and 500mm in diameter. 

Additional Factors to Consider

  • Horizontal or vertical? – Log splitters come in both horizontal and vertical forms and which you choose really depends on personal preference. Horizontal log splitters will be easier for you to insert and secure the wood, however, you will need to lift the logs higher with a horizontal log splitter than with a vertical model, which is worth thinking about if you are working with larger logs. There are log splitters on the market that can be used vertically or horizontally so add to the flexibility in your work. 
  • Duocut blade – There are some models that now come with a duo cut blade (a blade that cuts from the bottom and the top of the log). This is well worth looking out for when purchasing a log splitter as it doubles the tonnes of pressure that you are working with, making it a lot easier to cut bigger pieces of wood. They also help if you are working with pieces of wood that have a lot of knots, as if one blade gets stuck, the other one can still carry on going. 
  • Stand – Not all log splitters come with a stand, which in our view is so important to make the job easier! Without a stand, you will have to lean down to the floor to secure your wood and will be harder to control the trigger if you have one with a mechanical arm. 
  • Warranty – Most log splitters come with a 12-month warranty as standard, but you can expect your tool to last a lot longer than that providing it is maintained properly and regularly. 

Looking for somewhere to store your logs after they have been split? Why not check out some of the best log stores to see if there is one that will be right for you!

Maintaining your Log Splitter

Depending on the type of log splitter that you purchase, you will have more or less maintenance to be ready for! Kinetic log splitters need very little maintenance, simply make sure sure that any dust and debris is removed from the device after use and occasionally oil moving parts to keep them working as smoothly as possible. 

This is quite different from hydraulic log splitters, which although powerful require a lot more maintenance than their kinetic counterparts. Hydraulic log splitters need fluid to work correctly, and if the hose and other parts of the arm aren’t maintained this liquid can then leak and not only stop the machine from working as effectively but can actually damage the rest of the machine in the process! Make sure to check the pipes/hoses on a regular process as they will be dealing with extreme changes in pressure (as this is the nature of their job).

TOP TIP: Never check for a leak with your bare hand – simply hold a piece of cardboard over the area you think is leaking and see if it changes colour or rips from the pressure. 

Make sure to change the fluid regularly and also make sure there is no water buildup (you will notice this if the fluid is discoloured) as this will affect the function of your log splitter and can damage it in the long run. When doing this, ensure that the fluid is within the required level – as, with a car, too much or too little could damage the engine of your machine and stop it working correctly. 

Finally, make sure to keep the ram well greased and rust-free. If your hydraulic arm becomes covered in rust this will affect the pressure and, again, affect the workings of your log splitter. 

Best of the Rest

The Handy THLS-6G Electric Log Splitter with Safety Shut-Off and Guard, 2200W 6 Tons Pressure - 2 Year Guarantee
  • QUICKLY AND EASILY MAKE KINDLING AND FIREWOOD WITHOUT A WOOD AXE - simply place a log inside the wood splitter, then press the push button switch with your right hand and the hydraulic control lever with your left to force the log onto a splitting wedge
  • SPLITS SEASONED OR GREENWOOD TIMBER - a massive 6 tons of pressure means you can effortlessly split logs up to 52cm in length and 25cm in diameter to make firewood for your wood burner or open fire
  • STRONG AND STABLE WITH BUILT-IN SAFETY FEATURES - rugged metal construction means the wood splitter feels sturdy and firm in use, while a two-handed safety control system means that if one hand slips, the machine stops instantly
  • EASY TO TRANSPORT - the log cutter is mounted on wheels with a pull handle so it's easy to move from your shed or garage to your work area
  • AUTHENTIC BRITISH BRAND SINCE 1938 – The Handy is known for well-engineered, robust and reliable products that get the job done and make gardening easy, with a helpful and knowledgeable aftercare team based in the UK

Last update on 2024-04-23 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Sale
Forest Master FM10T-7 7 Ton Electric Log Splitter - DUOCUT Blade - 450mm Log Length Capacity - Ramstop - Pre-Filled with Oil and Ready to Use - Stand Included
  • POWERFUL 7-TON FORCE: Split harder woods effortlessly with the FM10T-7's impressive 7T of splitting force.
  • EFFICIENT SPLITTING: DuocutTM Blade splits from both sides of the log, ensuring it takes the easiest route to splitting any log.
  • VERSATILE PERFORMANCE: Handles hard and softwood, from pine to oak, for all your domestic splitting needs.
  • READY TO USE: Comes filled with hydraulic oil, ready for immediate operation.
  • TIME-SAVING FEATURE: Ram Stop limits return travel, perfect for splitting short logs.

Last update on 2024-04-23 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Forest master Manual Heavy Duty Log Splitter Fast 10 Ton splitting force DUO10T
  • Produces 10 Tonnes of force
  • Duocut twin blades work together using two splitting blades rather than one to optimise the splitting capacity
  • Twin lever rapid lift jack for faster splitting with a 16mm-20mm lift per crank
  • Adjustable blade position so the blade starts splitting the log immediately
  • Can be used vertically or horizontally operated by foot pedal or hand lever

Last update on 2024-04-23 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Frequently Asked Questions

Can my log splitter be used on freshly felled wood?

This really depends on the quality of log splitter that you decide to purchase. Freshly felled or “green” wood will always have more moisture than seasoned wood that has been stored for a while before splitting, making it harder to split. However, if you purchase a log splitter that is able to cut with more pressure/tonnes then you should still be able to split greenwood.

What if my logs are smaller than the space in the log splitter?

Don’t panic if you are working with logs that are smaller than the designated space in the log splitter. Many log splitters will come with an adjustable wedge that can be moved to fit perfectly with the piece of wood you are working with.

How many tonnes of pressure do I need in my log splitter?

This depends on the size of logs that you are going to be working with. However, we would suggest that if you are working with logs that are around 150mm in length then you will need around a 4-tonne log splitter if you are wanting to get the job done at a reasonable speed. If working with bigger pieces of wood around 350mm then you will need to look for a 10-tonne log splitter. 

Is a log splitter worth the money?

If you have one or more wood burning stoves in your home, that are used quite regularly through the winter months then we definitely feel you would go through enough wood to make purchasing a log splitter worth it. If you have a fire pit in your garden that is only used a few times a year then a log splitter may not be worth the investment! Ultimately, the decision is up to you!

About Thomas Paxton 368 Articles
Hey there, I'm Thomas Paxton, your Tool Guru with a Twist! I've been knee-deep in the world of tools since I was a little tinkerer in my dad's shed. Now, I'm running my own website where I share my passion for tools and gardening products through buyers guides and insightful tips. I've got the knowledge and experience to break down complex concepts into simple, easy-to-understand language. I purchased Tools Review from Mike Jones at the start of 2023, he has done a sterling job of building the site and I hope I can continue in his success! When I'm not writing guides, you'll find me in my garden or garage, putting my skills to work and pushing the boundaries of creativity. So, whether you're a pro or just starting out, join me on this adventure, and let's conquer DIY projects together!

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.