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With an aerator you help your lawn to breathe. Only if you aerate your green carpet regularly will it stay healthy and beautiful in the long term. You can find out what is important when buying an aerator in our article. We also provide you with recommendations for good equipment and the most important tips for aerating.

Nailed shoes are the cheap version of aerators

Our recommendations

our recommendation
EEIEER lawn aerator lawn aerator scarifier lawn scarifier lawn nail shoes for your lawn or yard
24.99 EUR To the product
Type Shoe aerator
number of tines 26
length of the tines approx. 55mm
working width about 30 cm

We deliberately gave first place in our comparison to a shoe aerator - because no other aerator solution can really be used so easily by every hobby gardener. The majority of reviewers on Amazon rate the lawn aerator spiked shoes from EEIEER very positively. They are made of stable and rust-free materials, the workmanship of which should convince if you trust the opinions of the buyers. In addition, most customers speak of a simple tightening system and pleasant wearing comfort. Most importantly, the shoes work - their relatively long tines reliably dig into the ground and provide the desired ventilation holes. As long as you are not bothered by strange looks from any neighbors, the cheap nailed shoes are an excellent choice.

our recommendation
UPP Rolling Lawn Aerator | Manual aerator makes lawn aeration easy | Robust spiked roller works without electricity or petrol
To the product
Type aerator roller
number of tines 27
length of the tines approx. 35mm
working width about 42 cm

It does what it's supposed to do: the rolling lawn aerator (€152.63) from Greenkey. Many Amazon reviewers praise the excellent ventilation achieved with the 45 millimeter long tines. Thanks to the practical rolling function and the good working width, you can make quick progress with the device. You have to exert strength, but see it positively (like an Amazon customer): When you aerate, you do sports and train your whole body.

our recommendation
Yard Butler IM-7C Multi Spike Lawn Aerator
40.98 EUR To the product
Type ventilation fork
number of tines 4
length of the tines approx. 3 inch (approx. 76 mm)
working width approx. 21 cm

The Yard Butler Aerator earns third place for its simple yet robust construction and classic application. Of course, the US import is only recommended for small gardens due to the low number of tines - otherwise you will have to do a long time to aerate your green oasis. Fortunately, the work normally only occurs twice a year at most. Anyone who wants a simple, first-class finish and extremely durable aerator is making a top decision with this model.

Purchase Criteria


ventilation fork: The ventilation fork is the classic among aerators. It is operated manually, which of course requires a lot of physical effort and strength. On the other hand, the version, which consists of a handle or frame with a handle and a prong element, costs little. Suitable for smaller gardens.

Shoe aerator: The shoe aerator functions as a very modern and quite practical solution. It usually consists of a footbed with adjustable straps and a spiked sole. The gardener simply attaches the aerator shoes to their own shoes and strides across their lawn to aerate it.

aerator roller: The aerator roller is similar to the aerator fork, but can be rolled over the lawn. As you push the machine in front of you, the tines will dig into the ground, creating the holes for ventilation. Compared to the simple ventilation fork, the roller usually requires less effort. That's why it's more expensive.

Electric/Gasoline Aerator: The electric or petrol aerator is motor driven and practically does the job by itself. All you have to do is provide the necessary power supply or a full tank and move the device over the ground - like a lawnmower. Convenient for large gardens, but expensive.

Combination device consisting of scarifier (€84.00) and aerator: The combination of scarifier and aerator is recommended for hobby gardeners who want to regularly scarify and aerate their lawn. It is available in both mechanical and motorized form. Depending on the drive, the 2-in-1 devices are cheaper or more expensive.

number of tines

The more tines the aerator has, the more holes you can punch in the ground in one go.

length of the tines

The longer the tines of the aerator, the deeper the bottom holes and the more intensively the air can penetrate.

working width

The larger the working width, the faster you will finish aerating your green carpet. 30 centimeters is a good guide value, which the selected aerator should not fall below if possible. Exception: With ventilation forks, the width is often smaller so that the devices remain handy and easy to use.

frequently asked Questions

What is an aerator?

An aerator, also known as an aerator or aerator, is a practical garden tool that you can use to aerate your lawn. Wooden or steel stamps are installed at the lower end of the tool. The length of these stamps is usually between four and 30 centimeters.

There are different types of aerators, such as

  • ventilation forks,
  • shoes with nail irons,
  • special rollers with spikes,
  • motorized aerators and
  • Combination devices consisting of scarifier and aerator.

How does an aerator work?

The functional principle of the aerator is very simple: by driving the ram of the special lawn aerator into the ground with pressure, you create several holes in the ground. These then ensure the aeration of the lawn.

Why is aeration useful?

Due to the effects of the weather and frequent stepping on, the earth in the garden soil is compressed over time, so that the pores close. The denser the turf becomes, the more moss spreads. As a result, waterlogging occurs and no air can penetrate to the grass roots. At some point the lawn stops growing - and the susceptibility to weeds increases.

By aerating you open the closed pores and promote air exchange in the soil. This ensures that water and nutrients reach the deeper soil layers faster, which stimulates the growth of the lawn roots.

What should I watch out for when aerating?

Here are the most important tips for aerating:


In spring (March/April/May) and, if necessary, in autumn (September/October).

Depending on the composition of the soil, aerating is generally only necessary every three to five years - as long as you do it thoroughly. Loamy and clayey soils need to be aerated more frequently. However, we advise you to carry out the procedure annually. After all, you are doing something good for your garden soil. You should even aerate lawns that are particularly heavily used every one to two months.


  • It is best to scarify the lawn first.
  • When aerating, punch out 100 to 200 holes per square meter.
  • When the tines are in the ground, shake the holes a little wider.
  • Remove soil from the lawn thrown out by the aerator.
  • Fill the resulting cavities with fine-grain sand to keep the soil condition loose and to promote grass growth. Wash the sand beforehand and don't work in too much of it.
  • Water the lawn generously after aerating and sanding.

Which brands offer good aerators?

There are numerous well-known brands that offer high-quality aerators. Some trustworthy manufacturers at a glance:

  • Black+Decker
  • Fiskars
  • Gardena
  • WOLF garden
  • Green key
  • unanimously
  • AL-KO

Where is the best place to buy an aerator?

Aerators are available in most hardware stores and garden centers - such as Hornbach, toom, hagebaumarkt, OBI or Dehner. You can enjoy a particularly large selection at Amazon.


Unfortunately, pure scarifiers are often sold as aerators. Always check carefully whether the device in question is actually an aerator.

How much does an aerator cost?

Depending on the aerator type, manufacturer and quality, you pay upwards of 15 euros. For electric or petrol-powered combination devices with high performance and many functions, you sometimes pay several hundred euros.

our recommendation
Einhell electric scarifier fan RG-SA 1433 (1400 W, 33 cm working width, 3 height settings, 28 l, recommended for areas up to 400 m²)
115.95 EUR To the product



Not sure if you should aerate your lawn? With a so-called penetrometer you can check the soil density. This meter determines the resistance when penetrating the earth. The result tells you whether it is necessary to buy and use an aerator as soon as possible.

lawn sand

In order to maintain the garden soil particularly comprehensively when aerating, it is advisable to fill the holes with lawn sand.

our recommendation
Hamann lawn sand 25 kg - with our lawn sand, compacted soil is loosened again.
To the product

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