For those who don’t prefer gas or electric post hole diggers, navigating the options to find the top manual post hole digger can pose a challenge. You must review multiple factors, maintain attentiveness to several considerations, and analyze various comparative variables.
That’s why, in this quick guide, we’ll show you the best manual post hole diggers available with a detailed explanation of each. This will help you make an informed decision even if you know nothing about post hole diggers.
Our Top Selections
- AMES 2701600 Post Hole Digger – Best Overall
- True Temper 2704200 – Most Lightweight
- Seymour 21306 AU-S6 Iwan Auger – Best for Hard Soils
- Fiskars 60 Inch Steel Posthole Digger – Best for Fence Posts
- Faithfull FAIPHA6 Post Hole Auger 6in Dia – Rotating Pick
Now, let’s explain each one in detail:
1. AMES 2701600 Post Hole Digger With Hardwood Measurement Handle – Best Overall
- IDEAL USE: Used to dig fence post holes and in ground support for projects like decks and mailboxes
- STRONG BLADE: Post hole digger with durable tempered steel blade
- OVERSIZED CUSHION GRIP for comfort
- MEASURING STICK on the handle for digging more accurate hole depths
- NORTH AMERICAN HARDWOOD HANDLE for strength and durability
- Dimensions: 6.5 x 6.25 x 58.75 inches (LxWxH)
- Weight: 8.78 pounds
- Handle Material: Hardwood
- Blade Material: Alloy steel
If you want a manual digger with a strong handle that you can rely on, the AMES 2701600 is for you. The handle is made from durable hardwood to prevent breaking or occasional metal bending.
Don’t worry; you won’t end up with any wood chips on your hand while digging holes because of the comfortable oversized cushioned grips.
As for the blade itself, it’s made from tempered alloy steel to help you latch hard into the soil with minimum resistance. It has a digging depth of 24 inches and a width of eight inches.
Further, you get a measurement scale on the wooden handle, which is fantastic if you’re digging several holes and you want them all to have the same depth.
Keep in mind that while the blades are indeed made from alloy steel, they aren’t to be used on rocky soil. Continuously hitting on rocks may render AMES post hole digger blades broken or deformed.
- Strong wooden handles that won’t break
- A measurement scale on the handle to help you dig uniformly
- Oversized cushion grips for maximum comfort
- Blades may bend if used in rocky soil
- Can be exhausting to use on long digging sessions
2. True Temper 2704200 – Most Lightweight
- POST HOLE DIGGER: Atlas pattern steel blades feature a sharp point and round size for creating the perfect hole
- PRECISE HOLES: Ruler built into handle measures depth
- END GRIP: Cushion end grip for comfort and more control; Grip color may vary
- FIBERGLASS HANDLE: 48-inch fiberglass handles are durable and weather-resistant
- Great for installing fence posts, flag poles and other in-ground structures
- Dimensions: 4.8 x 5.63 x 58.5 inches (LxWxH)
- Weight: 0.5 pounds
- Handle Material: Fiberglass
- Blade Material: Alloy steel
At first glance, the True Temper 2704200 looks like the AMES 2701600 with a different set of colors. They both have more or less the same design, the measurement scale is on the handle, and they both have high ratings and the Amazon’s Choice badge.
Comically, at the time of writing this, they both have the same price on Amazon as well. So, why would you pick one of them over the other? The answer is simple: the weight.
Instead of the heavy hardwood, the True Temper handle and shaft are made from ultra-lightweight fiberglass, rendering the entire digger weighing less than one pound!
On the other hand, the blades appear to be made of two sheets of alloy steel welded together, which leaves them somewhat blunt and unable to handle soil with excessive remaining roots.
So, if your soil wasn’t excessively planted before, and you don’t want to lose your breath hauling around with your manual hole digger, the True Temper is a great choice.
- The lightest option on our list, weighing less than a pound
- A measurement scale on the handle
- Fairly affordable
- Not suitable to dig in the soil where the remaining roots are present
- Some users mentioned that the grips on the handle don’t last very long
3. Seymour 21306 AU-S6 Iwan Auger With Hardwood Handle – Best for Hard Soils
- It is designed for general purpose use in a variety of soils
- Steel blade is riveted to tough pliable iron yoke
- Has a steel shaft with a welded steel t-handle
- 6" Point spread
- Made in USA
- Dimensions: 11 x 11 x 5 inches (LxWxH)
- Weight: 7.4 pounds
- Handle Material: Wood
- Blade Material: Steel
The Seymour 21306 AU-S6’s design is fairly different from your conventional manual post hole diggers. It’s designed to work on those harder soils that a traditional post hole digger usually can’t handle.
The reason behind that lies in the spiral hooked design. So when you use this digger, you won’t have to force it down to the soil. There will be some pressure required to rotate the blade into the soil, but it won’t be as shocking to your body as slamming the blades like you normally would.
The bicycle handle is made of wood, and it helps you effectively rotate the blade even if the soil is a little harder than usual. Keep in mind that it still won’t do optimum work in rocky soils, but it’ll do a decent job in clay soil.
The Seymour can dig 36-inch holes that are six inches wide.
- It works in harder soils than regular hole diggers
- The blade mechanism makes the tool less exhausting to use
- It has a decent digging depth of up to 36 inches
- The wood on the handle wears out a bit too fast
- Doesn’t perform well on rocky soil
4. Fiskars 60” Steel Post Hole Digger – Best for Fence Posts
- IDEAL GARDEN DIGGER: Long-handled steel posthole digger with a steel pole and steel blade; Ideal for cutting through tough soil and breaking up ground for fence, railing, and post-installation
- MAXIMUM POWER AND PRECISION: Offset handles let you dig up to 12 inches deeper than traditional models and protect your knuckles while you dig; Sharpened blades slice cleanly through dense turf; Long...
- LONG-LASTING AND RELIABLE: Welded, 14-gauge, hardened steel blade and 16-gauge steel handle provide excellent durability for lasting value; Fiskars lawn and garden tools are built to last
- QUALITY GARDEN TOOLS: From tree pruners to garden shears, Fiskars garden and yard tools are equipped with smart technologies and award-winning, ergonomic features that make it easier and more...
- INCLUDES: 1 Fiskars 60" Posthole Digger; Full lifetime warranty
- Dimensions: 4.38 x 7.38 x 60.25 inches (LxWxH)
- Weight: 10.45 pounds
- Handle Material: Stainless steel
- Blade Material: Stainless steel
It’s hard to talk about post hole diggers without mentioning the Fiskars. It can dig holes that are 24 inches deep and 6 inches wide, making it suitable for tasks like digging for fence posts.
This digging tool weighs less than 11 pounds, which, for a stainless steel manual digger, is fairly lightweight. However, it’s still the heaviest option on our list and the one that can exhaust you the most.
Moving on, the Fiskars digger is designed in a way to prevent your knuckles from slamming into each other as you dig. Oddly enough, this is a problem that many manual diggers have.
It also has nearly 5,500 ratings and has the Amazon’s Choice tag. Maybe the lifetime warranty has something to do with it?
- Protects against knuckle slamming
- Durable and easy to operate
- It has a lifetime warranty
- The metal sometimes bends under pressure
- The handle can telescope down if you’re working on extra hard soil
5. Faithfull FAIPHA6 Post Hole Auger 6in Dia – Rotating Pick
- A post hole auger provides an easy non mechanical means of creating holes when erecting fencing posts
- The overall height of the tool is 1100 mm and the thread length is 380 mm x 150 mm diameter
- Diameter 6 inches
- Dimensions: 42.05 x 10.63 x 41.34 inches (LxWxH)
- Weight: 6.69 pounds
- Handle Material: Bare ash wood
- Blade Material: Carbon steel
If you prefer to use manual post hole diggers and still want that rotating blade of automatic post hole diggers, you may try the Faithfull FAIPHA6.
This manual digger gets you a song from every movie. You get the rotation digging mechanism of an automatic post hole digger without the motorized function and fuel consumption.
The Faithful can dig approximately 15-inch holes with a diameter of six inches, so it’s mostly suitable for gardens and soft soil as it can’t dig deep holes.
Just keep in mind that the handle is made from bare ash wood. You’ll need to wear gloves to avoid injuries and blisters.
- You get the rotation mechanism of motorized diggers without needing any fuel
- The rotation mechanism is more comfortable than the soil-stabbing one
- Strong ash wood handle that won’t break or distort
- Not suitable for rocky or clay soil
- The ash wood handle is painful if used without gloves
Here’s a bird eye view of the five products we gathered for you:
|Point of Comparison
|AMES 2701600 Post Hole Digger with Hardwood Measurement...
|True Temper 2704200 48 in. Fiberglass Handle Post Hole...
|Seymour 21306 AU-S6 Iwan Auger with Hardwood Handle, 6"...
|Fiskars 60" Steel Posthole Digger - Long-Handled...
|Faithfull FAIPHA6 Post Hole Auger 6in Dia
While designing your ideal outdoor space, it is vital to have an electric pruning saw to simplify the trimming of bushes, branches, and other stubborn plant materials, ensuring a neat and well-maintained garden.
What Should You Look For When You Buy a Post Hole Digger?
Here’s what to keep in mind before buying a manual post hole digger:
How Much Does It Weigh?
While manual post hole diggers often weigh under 12 pounds, the small pound differences between them can actually control how long you can keep digging.
If you often have to dig many holes, opt for lighter diggers as they don’t fatigue you as much.
How Deep Are You Willing to Dig?
Some diggers are versatile and would help in most situations, while others are limited as to how deep they will dig. It’ll be up to you to decide the best post hole digger based on the depth of the post holes you need.
What’s Your Preferred Mechanism?
Do you like the conventional blade dip technique, or do you prefer to rotate your digger into the ground? The digger design will influence this, so keep that in mind while buying.
There you have it: five of the best manual diggers you can currently buy. Digging post holes manually may take some time compared to a gas or an electric post hole digger, but you’ll get the job done eventually.
Consider the weight, material, depth, and design of the post hole digger before you purchase it to get the best value for money.
Make sure to click on the Amazon links to see the products yourself.
After mastering the use of the manual post hole digger, you might also want to discover other manual gardening tools like the garden tiller to further enrich your gardening toolset and enhance your gardening experience.
Last update on 2024-02-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API