When it is time to buy a broadcast feeder to ease your lawn maintenance chores, your choices are often between two extremes. You can head to the local big box and buy their offering for $30 to $50 and hope that it lasts the entire season before you have to get another one next year. Or you can go out ans spend ten times that amount on a model that is designed for professional landscapers who will use it every day. Sure it will last forever but will you, as a do-it-yourselfer, ever get enough use out of it to justify the initial expense? Looking for a third choice somewhere in the middle, I found the Earthway 2150 Commercial 50-Pound Walk-Behind Broadcast Spreader. This looks like it may be the compromise answer I was looking for.
The Earthway 2150 is a ruggedly built broadcast spreader designed to allow the homeowner to easily spread grass seed, fertilizer, and weed killer over their lawn. The tubular steel frame carries a load rating of 175 pounds so you know it is strong enough to last years. The hopper capacity is a full 50 pounds so you can put a full bag of seed or fertilizer in it at once, allowing you to complete your yard with less trips back to refill.
It features 13 inch pneumatic tires to make pushing it as easy as possible, even with a full hopper. The tires also make it take rough ground with aplomb. Even hills and slopes won’t slow you down much.
The specially designed feed system features three holes to feed the granules onto the impeller disk evenly which works to ensure even coverage of your lawn. The feed system is easily adjustable with a handle that allows you to set the spread ratio to exactly what is called for on the material’s packaging. A chart is included to help you dial in the exact setting you need for any material.
The handle adjusts to fit almost any individual. It has three positions so you can find the one that best fits you, allowing the most comfort possible as you get your lawn to the lush green that you always dreamed of.
Features and Benefits
- The frame is durably constructed and heavy duty, rated for a load weight of 175 pounds so it will not flex or collapse with a 50 pound load of seed or fertilizer.
- The hopper is rated for 50 pounds so that you can load a whole bag of material at once, meaning less hassle of having to refill it over and over.
- The 13 inch balloon tires ensure that it is easy to push whether your lawn is flat or rolling, smooth or rocky.
- The handle is adjustable to three different lengths so it matches your height, preventing the back pain caused by hunching over a spreader with a handle that is too short or struggling to push one with at handle that is too long.
- The volume of distribution is easily adjusted to ensure that the proper amount of material is spread.
- The spreader is designed with three feed holes to guarantee even coverage no matter what speed you decide to push it at.
The Earthway spreader is very popular with online reviewers. 76% of them say it is perfect with five star ratings while 91% give it at least four stars. They all agree that it will last long enough for them to get more than their money’s worth out of it, easily replacing five or six cheap spreaders from the box store. Pro-rated over the life of the spreader, the cost is way less than the cost of buying a new one every year.
The biggest compliments were paid to the 13 inch balloon tires. They made pushing the spreader a joy even when fully loaded and/or on a slope. Many reviewers expressed amazement at how little effort was required to use it.
The adjustable handle received its own share of praise. Several reviewers were extremely pleased with the handle adjustments after years of dealing with the painful after effects of using a spreader that just didn’t fit them. A handle that is too long will make a spreader take a lot if extra effort to push, leading to fatigue while one that is too short will make the user hunch over, leading to back pain.
Another positive aspect of the Earthway 2150 is the solid durable construction. Built in the USA, it is made with heavy duty components so it will keep working long after several cheap flimsy spreaders have wore out.
While there were not a lot of complaints, one that came up again and again was the assembly was considerably harder than expected. Nearly everyone agreed that photographs would have been much more helpful than the included drawings. The reported assembly time ranged from 45 minutes to over two hours and it was said parts were easy to assemble upside down or backwards. This often didn’t become apparent until several steps later, leading to a lot of wasted time disassembling and redoing.
One other complaint was about the rod that connects the control handle to the flow cut off. It was said to be easily bendable if too much force is used when turning the spreader on and off. This is something that should probably be beefed up in the future but if you are aware of it, it is easy to pay attention to how much force you exert on the control.
By filling in a niche between the cheap junk available locally and the expensive professional models, the Earthway 2150 Commercial 50-Pound Walk-Behind Broadcast Spreader is a high quality, fairly priced tool that should provide the do it yourself homeowner years of service. It is perfectly sized and priced for those tired of wasting money on annual purchases of cheap spreaders but without the need or the budget for a true commercial solution.