Ryobi RY253SS Review

This two-cycle gas trimmer comes with a handle that you can adjust to make it more comfortable for people of different sizes. It is also one of the more affordable string trimmers in our comparison and has a lot of features. The Ryobi performed solidly in our tests.

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Our Verdict

The Ryobi RY253SS is an affordable, versatile tool that can support multiple attachments. With its wide cutting path, it’s a good choice for most yards, but for longer jobs you may feel a strain due to the somewhat uneven weight distribution.

For

  • This gas trimmer features an 18-inch cutting radius.

Against

  • This trimmer weighs just over twelve pounds.
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This Ryobi weed eater has a two-cycle, full-crank engine.

This Ryobi weed eater has a two-cycle, full-crank engine.
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You can reload string on this Ryobi weed whacker without having to remove the head from the shaft. You thread string through the head, twist the head and then get on with your yard work.

You can reload string on this Ryobi weed whacker without having to remove the head from the shaft. You thread string through the head, twist the head and then get on with your yard work.
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The choke on this Ryobi weed whacker can go into full choke, half choke and run positions.

The choke on this Ryobi weed whacker can go into full choke, half choke and run positions.
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The red stop switch on this Ryobi weed whacker is located just above the throttle trigger.

The red stop switch on this Ryobi weed whacker is located just above the throttle trigger.
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This Ryobi string trimmer uses a somewhat square-shape handle.

This Ryobi string trimmer uses a somewhat square-shape handle.
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The debris guard on this Ryobi gas weed trimmer is slight curved and keeps grass and weed particles from blowing onto you.

The debris guard on this Ryobi gas weed trimmer is slight curved and keeps grass and weed particles from blowing onto you.
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This Ryobi weed whacker can extend into hard-to-reach places.

This Ryobi weed whacker can extend into hard-to-reach places.
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Not only can you trim grass and weeds with this Ryobi weed whacker, but you can add other attachments.

Not only can you trim grass and weeds with this Ryobi weed whacker, but you can add other attachments.

This two-cycle gas trimmer comes with a handle that you can adjust to make it more comfortable for people of different sizes. It is also one of the more affordable string trimmers in our comparison and has a lot of features.

The Ryobi performed solidly in our tests. Our testers found that it had above-average cutting power and it covered a lot of ground with fewer passes, so we didn’t have to work as hard. The 18-inch cutting path is tied with the Toro 51978 as the widest swath in our reviews. This weed whacker is also one of the few in our lineup with an anti-vibration function. While it didn’t perform as well in our vibration tests as the other trimmers with this feature, like the Hitachi CG23ECPSL, it performed much better than trimmers without this feature.

One drawback with this weed whacker is its heavier-than-average, 12.2-pound weight. The weight distribution was also a bit of problem. It handled fine, but it wasn’t as balanced as some of the other trimmers we tested. As a result, you may feel some fatigue after a long job.

Additional attachments for this gas trimmer can be purchased to make it a multitasking tool. These extras include an edger, blower and tiller. The attachments are, of course, an added expense, but are a nice convenience that will let you take care of the bulk of your yard work with a single tool.

This trimmer uses a bump-feed head to extend more string with a quick thump on the ground. While there are cheaper models out there, like the Bolen BL160, this gas trimmer has extras like its attachment support, anti-vibration functionality and a longer-than-average warranty that make it a great value.

The Ryobi Gas Trimmer RY253SS provides a better-than-average warranty: three years for parts and labor and three years for the drive shaft. This is another thing that sets it apart from less expensive models. The industry standard is two years, so the added year of coverage is nice. Should you encounter difficulties using this Ryobi weed eater, you can always check the online manual to find troubleshooting tips. If necessary, you can take your gas weed eater to a local service center or contact the manufacturer by phone or email.

The Ryobi RY253SS Gas Trimmer is a versatile weed eater if you opt for the additional attachments. It’s an affordable trimmer that works equally well as an edger for any sized yard. This gas trimmer performed well in our tests with nice cutting power, and it covered a lot of ground with less work than most trimmers we tested. However, it is heavier than average and its weight distribution is less than stellar, so you may feel fatigue when using it for long periods. Its affordability and multifunctional feature package make it a valid option for most consumers.