Thursday, 23 April 2015
Keep your garden up to standard
It took some time but spring has finally arrived. April is the appropriate time of year for all sorts of preparatory work in the garden. You can now prune certain types of shrubs as well as fruit trees, or plant the bulbs of summer flowers (e.g. dahlias, lilies).
After the winter, the lawn too is in need of some serious maintenance. Once the lawn has been mowed for the first time, a scarifier helps to eliminate moss and thatch, so that the soil can breathe again. Lawn trimmers and lawn edge trimmers come in handy to cut the grass on the edges.
Did you know however that all these tools are covered by a series of standards?
Standards for powered garden tools: from shredder to lawn mower
Here are some examples of standards on garden equipment which focus mainly on reliability and user safety.
- Standard NBN EN 13683+A2 contains safety requirements for integrally powered shredders and chippers. These tools are especially used in large gardens for shredding prunings. The dimensions of the feed safety openings must be limited, or there must be a safe distance between the feed intake opening and the cutting means in order to avoid serious injuries to the hand or arm of the user.
- NBN EN 13684+A3 deals with lawn aerators and scarifiers. One of the requirements of the standard is that the user must be protected against contact with hot or moving parts and not be hit by thrown objects. Moreover the tines of the scarifier may not break off when it rides over a hard object.
- NBN EN 786+A2 deals with electrically powered hand-held lawn trimmers and lawn edge trimmers. The cutting action of these tools is often based on a nylon cord rotating at high speed to cut the grass. An appropriate guard must protect the operator against contact with the rotating cord. Heavy appliances (with a mass of more than 6 kg) must contain a shoulder harness, for reasons of comfort and ergonomics (avoid back pains).
- NBN EN ISO 5395 consists of three parts and specifies requirements for petrol lawn mowers. This standard deals with the safety of pedestrian controlled lawn mowers as well as ride-on lawn mowers (with seated operator). The standard describes for instance the minimum slope angles for which ride-on lawn mowers must remain stable and not overturn, in order to avoid serious injury to the operator caused by the weight of the mower or by contact with the moving blades.
Thanks to these safety standards, you can count on the reliability and safety of your garden equipment. And later on, sit back and enjoy the beauty of your garden!