Weed Eater String: 3 Common Problems & How To Solve Each


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If you are ready to throw your weed eater in frustration (or maybe you already have?! 😂) we honestly hope this solves the problems you are having with your weed eater string quickly and for good!

Let's get right to the list of common weed eater string issues. 

Please feel free to skip ahead to the section covering the problem you are experiencing.

Common Weed Eater String Problems

Here's our list of the most common issues you may experience with your trimmer string while using your weed eater or string trimmer.

Click on any link to skip ahead!

  1. The trimmer string keeps going back inside the trimmer head
  2. The trimmer string keeps getting stuck together inside the trimmer head
  3. The trimmer string gets too short too fast

We also have a couple of bonus tips if you are experiencing other issues with your trimmer string at the end!

Are you having trouble 're-stringing your trimmer head?'  If so, read our article that covers the 3 steps to re-string your weed eater

Direction Arrows on String Trimmer Head

How to stop trimmer string from constantly going back into the trimmer head

If you are experiencing the trimmer string continuing to want to go back inside the trimmer head as you are trying to finish weed eating, we have an easy fix for you.

You simply need to 'bump' your trimmer string out more often.  Your string trimmer should dispense more trimmer string if the trimmer head is gently tapped on the ground. If you can depress the 'bump head' located at the bottom of your 'trimmer head,' this is how your weed eater is designed to work. 

Almost all somewhat new string trimmers will have this functionality.  If your string trimmer is older and does not, we strongly encourage you to make your life so much easier and upgrade your string trimmer, or look into aftermarket bump heads that may fit your existing string trimmer.

If the string outside of the trimmer head gets too short, it will always return back into the trimmer head.  The solution is to make sure you don't let your trimmer string get too short.

We don't sell string trimmers, but we do sell trimmer string and after market bump heads that may be compatible with your existing string trimmer.

Stihl Weed Eater Restring

What to do if your trimmer string keeps getting stuck together inside the trimmer head

Another common issue you may experience with your trimmer string is that it can melt to itself inside the trimmer head.  Once the string has melted to the coiled up string next to it inside your trimmer head, it is no longer able to 'bump out' when you tap your trimmer head.

We are using the term 'melt' because this is exactly what is happening.  The trimmer string is getting too hot causing it to melt.

We have 2 suggestions to solve this common problem with trimmer string.  

First try bumping your string out more often.  That would be great if this does solve this specific issue for you.

If it doesn't, we can almost guarantee you have some super cheap trimmer string inside your trimmer head.  There is not a big difference in price between 'cheap and expensive' trimmer string, but there is a big difference in quality!

We only sell high-quality trimmer string and have the lowest price on the internet for several of the most popular types.  With lots of trimmer string styles, sizes, and amounts available, we have the perfect string for any string trimmer.

Residential Weed Eater

How to stop your trimmer string from getting too short too fast

If you are bumping your string out often enough and that is not the reason your trimmer string is getting too short too fast, you may have it strung incorrectly causing this issue.  Please read our related article on how to properly string your string trimmer.

If you are sure you have the trimmer string properly inserted inside your trimmer head and the string still gets too short too fast, you really need a thicker diameter trimmer string.  More than likely, the trimmer string you are currently using is not 'heavy duty' enough to handle the trimming you are trying to accomplish with it.

We carry trimmer line with diameters from as small as .065 to .155 inches.  Depending on your string trimmer, you can only go up to a certain diameter trimmer string.  Most have a range of trimmer string diameters they are compatible with.  We recommend Googling your weed eaters make and model to find out what size trimmer line your weed eater is compatible with.

FYI, most lawn mowing companies are running .095" or .105" trimmer line in their string trimmers.  Homeowner grade electric or battery powered string trimmers probably came with cheap .065" line inside them and may only be able to handle up to .080" trimmer line.  .130" and .155" trimmer line are typically used by commercial companies with powerful gas-powered weed eaters and most often they only use these string trimmers and large diameter trimmer line with weed eating long fence lines or retention ponds for example.

Weed Eater String Troubleshooting Bonus Tips

We have a couple other things we will quickly cover in case nothing we already covered has solved your weed eater string problem!

What to do if your weed eater string is not coming out

If you know you have more string inside your trimmer head and bumping your trimmer head is not dispensing more trimmer string, we have a couple of tips in this scenario.

First, make sure you do have string inside the trimmer head, and that it is not melted together and/or twisted around the spool in a manner that stops more from being dispensed.

Next, ensure you have wound the trimmer string in the proper manner and direction that your specific trimmer head calls for.  Google your weed eaters make and model to learn how to properly string your trimmer head or read our general guide applicable to most string trimmers on how to restring a trimmer head.

If none of these tips work, we think that you may worn too much material off the 'bump head' itself.  Once the part of the bump head that makes contact with the ground wears to a certain extend, it becomes ineffective!  You may simply need to purchase a new bump head for your string trimmer.

How often/when should I bump out more trimmer string?

How often you should bump out more trimmer string depends on a number of factors.  But, in general you want your trimmer string to be 80%-100% of it's ideal length per the string cutter found on your weed eater's protective guard.

You will notice a decline in performance once the string is less than 80% of this length, which is typically 6"-8" by the way.  The 'ideal length' all depends on your specific string trimmer model.

Professional lawn mowers can 'listen' to the noise created by their trimmer string rotating and know when more string needs to bumped out by the sound alone.  Pay attention to the sound the next time you are string trimming and you may find this to be a very valuable tip!

Weed Eater String Too Long

What to do if my trimmer string is too long?

If your trimmer string is too long, cut it!  We recommend using a trimmer line cutter to cut trimmer string and not a knife!  Using a knife is very dangerous, scissors or snips of some sort would be much better than a knife of any type but often they struggle to cleanly cut trimmer line.  If you don't get a clean cut you will probably experience the final tip noted below!

This tip may seam like common sense but we included it because if you string up your trimmer and have too much trimmer line after inserting new string, your string cutter from on your trimmer guard will probably be rendered useless!

I can't get my trimmer string to fit in the starting position inside the trimmer head

If you simply can't get your trimmer line to poke into the hole inside the trimmer head which is supposed to keep it in place while you wind up the rest of the spool, you either need a cleaner cut on that end you are trying to insert or you are trying to use a diameter of trimmer string too thick for your string trimmer.

The solutions for this problem would be to ideally use a line cutter to quickly and safely get a clean cut on your trimmer line each and every time.  If you are trying to insert a trimmer line too thick for your machine, you just need to buy a smaller diameter line.

Ryan Sciamanna

Ryan is the owner and founder of Lawn Crack, Optimized SEO and Websites, iGoPro Lawn Supply, and iGoPro Marketing. After working in about every aspect of the lawn care industry, Ryan started his own lawn care company with a push mower and no experience owning a business.

10 years later he sold his business for a healthy profit and continues to serve the lawn and landscape industry with high-quality products and website and online marketing services. Ryan also offers free content to help new lawn care business owners and DIY homeowners professionally maintain their lawns!

You can continue learning on LawnCrack.com's or iGoProLawnSupply.com's blogs or the LawnCrack YouTube channel. Free resources are available for download on LawnCrack.com. Consider buying the eBook version of Cracking the Code to Profit in the Lawn and Landscape Industry. In the book, Ryan lays out exactly how he built a profitable lawn care business and how you can do the same.