Installing a new garden fence is not the easiest task. One of the more challenging aspects is digging holes for the post. Fence posts need to be installed several metres into the ground, otherwise it lacks stability and durability, making an essential part of the task.
However, digging this deep into the ground is difficult, especially if using unsuitable equipment. Most people assume that digging a post hole only requires a shovel, and while you certainly can try this method, it is back breaking work that will take a lot of time and effort to complete.
Instead of digging with a shovel, you want to use a post hole digger. This is a tool specially designed to dig holes for fence posts and other outdoor fixtures like decking, making it a worthwhile investment for anyone planning on installing a new fence.
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Roughneck ROU68260 Post Hole Digger
This digging tool is manually operated with a burrowing function, making if affordable and simple to operate. Made from heavy gauge metal, it is strong yet durable, capable of digging into even the toughest soil types, even those thick with clay.
As it is manually operated you do need to use some effort to start digging, although the sharp screw blade does easily penetrate soil, including harder surfaces with lots of compaction. It digs a 152mm diameter hole, so should be fine for most garden fence posts.
Using a T-handle, you can get a firm grip on the device to start rotating it – it is easy to generate plenty of torque to burrow into tougher soils. The tubular design helping to keep the tool’s weight down (3.7kg) for easier use, while handles have a soft grip for added comfort too.
- Hardened & Heat treated
- Soft grip for comfort
- Tubular T handle for increased torque
Dealourus Petrol Auger Fence Post Hole Borrer Digger
Boasting a powerful 65cc 2-stroke combustion engine, this device makes short work of your burrowing needs. The 3HP engine does all the digging work for you, providing the screw blade with a whopping 9000RPM – this will easily dig into even the toughest soils.
Given that it uses a petrol engine, it does generate a fair amount of vibration when burrowing, although this is offset by ergonomic twin handles with anti-vibration foam grip, helping reduce fatigue.
Better still, it comes with three interchangeable drill bits, allowing you to burrow different size holes as needed. This includes 100mm, 150mm, and 200mm diameter attachments, along with a 600mm extension pole should you need more depth.
An easy pull recoil start removes all the challenges of trying to start the engine, while a throttle control system allows for simple control, including an auger break that automatically stops the drill bit when hitting hard ground.
- ✅【POWERFUL】65cc petrol earth auger with 1.2 litre tank capacity. 3HP, 9000…
- ✅【COMFORTABLE】Ergonomic design; twin handles for easy operator control &…
- ✅【EFFORTLESS】 Easy-pull recoil starter for nearly effortless starting. The…
Spear and Jackson Fencing Post Hole Digger
If you only need to dig a few holes and don’t want to pay a lot for your tools, this is a great product that can easily dig holes for a fence post. Unlike others on this list, it does not use a burrowing method, instead digging like a traditional shovel digs.
The main difference is that you can trap and remove dirt as you dig. Simply insert the oval shovel blades into the earth and then pull apart the large wooden handles, which close the head around the earth for easier removal from the hole.
It will take more effort to operate but easily digs into soil, although be mindful that you may need to exert more energy when digging into clay-heavy or compacted soils.
The blades are made from durable steel, so are strong enough to handle your digging needs, while the ash wood handles also providing stability for digging and lasting durability.
Oypla Post Hole Fence Manual Hand Drill Digger
This inexpensive auger is another solid choice for the budget-conscious gardener, providing a reliable burrowing tool for creating fence post holes. As a burrower type device, you simply insert the tip of the screw head into the desired location and then start to rotate the device via the large T-handle.
Ergonomic handles with rubber grips make the rotating process easy, ensuring minimal effort is required to burrow the hole, even when working on tougher soil. At 150mm, the screw diameter is a standard size so should accommodate most average fence posts, just be mindful if your posts are on the larger side.
The total length is 1030mm, so it digs quite deep into the earth, and it is made from high-quality steel for added strength and durability. You can also detach the handle when the tool is not being used, offering more compact storage should space be tight.
- Official Oypla Branded Product – Brand New Free UK Delivery
- Ergonomically Designed Rubber Handles
- High-Grade Steel Construction
52cc Petrol Earth Auger Drill Post Hole Digger
This auger is one of the most powerful available, sporting an impressive petrol engine and various drill bits to accommodate holes of varying sizes and depths.
While it is usable by one person, you might find it much easier to operate with two people, with the dual handle allowing dual person operation. This may be necessary as the device does weigh about 10kg and vibrates heavily.
A 52cc 3HP 2-stroke engine provides ample digging power, making this a great choice if you are working on tough terrain or have a lot of holes to dig. You do need to mix oil and petrol for fuel while the engine will need routine maintenance, although these are certainly worth doing for the sheer digging power of the tool.
As mentioned, there are interchangeable drill bit heads for different digging requirements. Three are included with diameters of 100mm, 150mm, and 200mm, while there is a 600mm extension pole for digging further into the ground.
- ❥Easy to use, lightweight, high quality. With this tool, you will be able to…
- ❥Supplied with three sizes of drill bits: 100 mm / 150 mm / 200 mm, petrol…
- ❥Great tool to make outdoor&garden activities, tree planting, road…
Post Hole Digger Buying Guide
What is a post hole digger?
A post hole digger, often called an auger, is a type of tool used to dig holes for installing posts outdoors. The most common use for this tool is digging and moving earth for a fence post, which needs installed several feet into the ground, although it can be used for any task that requires a robust post installed in the ground, such as for decking, a birdbox, or a sign.
Available as manual and gas-powered tools, the device makes short work of difficult digging tasks, especially when working with soil thick with clay.
How does a post hole digger work?
How they work differs from each type of tool, although most function by burrowing into the ground or digging like with a normal shovel.
Those that burrow into the ground use large drill bits with a rotating screw blade. Simply rotate the long handle and the auger starts digging into the ground, with the screw blade removing the soil from the hole as it rotates.
Petrol-powered types do all the rotating for you, removing much the strength needed to manually rotate the device.
Those that dig into the soil feature two hardened blades attached to two long handles. You place the digger head into the soil and pull the handles apart, causing the head to grab the soil for easier removal, repeating the process as you dig down into the earth.
Things to consider when buying a post hole digger
As mentioned, there are two types of digger available. Those with a screw blade rotate into the earth, essentially burrowing out the hole. They are easy to use, as you just need to place it in the desired spot, rotate the handle and then watch as the earth is removed while the screw blade turns.
That said, manual types do require a bit of strength to operate, although it should still be much easier compared to digging with a shovel. The handles are a decent length and offer a good grip, allowing you to easily rotate the device, even if soil is dry or compacted.
Digging type models of the best post hole diggers are less common than their burrowing counterparts. They function somewhat similarly to a shove, digging out the soil but also allowing you to remove it as you dig. You need to insert the head into the ground and then pull apart the two handles to grab hold of the soil, letting you lift it out and dump it before repeating.
Burrower types are generally the easiest to use, especially if they are petrol powered. You just rotate the handle to insert the screw blade to the desired depth, with all soil being removed as you rotate it.
Digging types require more effort, mainly because you need to lift it out to empty the soil, although they are useful when digging shallower holes, being much more affordable than burrower types.
Powered or Manual
Consider whether you want to use a manual or powered tool for the task. A manual device is much cheaper and relatively easy to use, although some physical strength is needed when working on tough soil.
Similarly, manual digging types are simple to use but do take more time to dig, as they don’t automatically remove the soil as they dig like with a burrower type. Their biggest advantage is being very affordable, so if you only need to replace a single post it may be the better choice.
A burrowing tool powered by a combustion engine is perfect for installing large fences, especially in compact soil. While costlier, they make hole digging effortless, saving a lot of time even compared to manual tools.
Because they use a petrol engine, you will need to use fuel and oil it from time to time, while it will require on-going maintenance. If choosing this type, be sure to consider things like engine size, fuel tank size,
Always check the hole diameter of any tool before you buy it. The size of the digging head determines how large a diameter the hole is, so make sure to choose a product that provides a suitable size for your fence post.
You will find that most products are designed to accommodate holes for average size fence posts, so unless you are installing an especially large fence you should be fine with a standard size. It helps to have your fence posts on hand to reference what size of diameter you need.
Many powered augers come with interchangeable drill bit heads, allowing you to adjust the diameter and depth of the hole. While more expensive, these are highly versatile and ideal for large-scale landscaping projects like fence and decking installation.
Last update on 2021-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API