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Customer reviews for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer

4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer

With a 4-cycle engine, the Ryobi 18 in. 30 cc Gas Trimmer offers the convenience of not having to mix gas or oil for start-up. The trimmer provides powerful operation in a lightweight, low-emission, anti-vibration and low-noise design. The trimmer shaft offers an optimal reach and helps you trim under obstacles. Ryobi 4-cycle trimmers are the lightest 4-cycle trimmers on the market and come with a best-in-class, three-year warranty.
Overall rating:
2.488 / 5
2.5
 / 
5
(334 reviews) 334
Open Ratings Snapshot
39%of customersrecommend this product127 of 327reviews
Rating Breakdown 334 reviews
2.5 out of 5.0
5
(78)
4
(46)
3
(12)
2
(23)
1
(175)
Features 
3.4 out of 5.0
3.4 out of 5
Quality 
2.6 out of 5.0
2.6 out of 5
Ease of use 
2.9 out of 5.0
2.9 out of 5
Value 
2.6 out of 5.0
2.6 out of 5
39%of customersrecommend this product127 of 327reviews
Customer questions and answers:
1 Question | 11 Answers
Customer reviews for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
Review 1 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Tallahassee
Age Range:45 to 54
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Don't be misled into buying this poorly designed product

PostedNovember 20, 2012
Overall rating 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Features 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Quality 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Ease of use 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Value 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
This product has many features that are attractive:
1- 4-cycle, so no mixing of gas and oil
2 - lots of attachments making this a versitle piece of equipment.
3 - Ryobi brand has a solid track record of producing good equipment at reasonable prices.
Unfortunately, these good features are outweighed by some severe drawbacks.
1 - Storing the unit in any position other than horizontal is likely to result in the loss of oil from the crankcase.
2 - The valves MUST be adjusted every 25 hours of use. If you are using multiple attachments and have a yard larger than a postage stamp, that's at least twice per season.
3 - Poor quality engine internal parts - specifically, the camshaft is made of plastic. In an air-cooled engine, plastic cannot withstand normal operating temperatures that are achieved on a 90 degree day.
4 - For people who are used to using a 2-cycle Ryobi, the head spins backwards requiring a change to your technique or busted shins.
5 - It is heavier than the 2-cycle models.
I purchased one as a replacement for a 2-cycle that I had owned for over 10 years. This first 4-cycle purchase was used according to the owner's manual. It rapidly lost power the first time it was used. I know the oil was at the proper level when I started it the first time. It was used as one would expect to use a weed-eater.
I returned the unit and obtained a replacement. It worked well for a few months, but power began to diminish and it became difficult to start and to keep it running. When I removed the valve cover to adjust the valves, it was clear that the plastic camshaft was severely worn and required replacement - but why go to that trouble? Plastic is not an appropriate material for a camshaft! A major Japanese manufacturer had similar problems with their vertical shaft engines on pressure washers - don't skimp on the camshaft!
A number of people have marked reviews that are critical of this equipment as unhelpful. Others have blamed the problems that were experienced on the owners. Nonsense. As an engineer, I am qualified to state that the original design of this engine was poor and guaranteed its failure. Unless Ryobi has changed the camshaft material (that's possible), then I cannot recommend this device and I know from my own experience that its failure had absolutely nothing to do with the user or the conditions under which it was used. The overwhelming majority of people who rated this device rated it poorly. If it worked for you, consider yourself fortunate. If you haven't purchased one - ask to see the valve adjustment procedure first - and look at the camshaft. If it is still plastic, run.
I've attached a photo of the offending camshaft. The exhaust lobe is clearly the culprit. The intake lobe is perfect. If this were the result of oil starvation, similar damage would have occurred to both lobes. I believe that this is the result of exhaust heat being transferred via the exhaust valve and rocker arm directly to the plastic lobe resulting in softening, malformation and failure.
Pros: All In One
Cons: Not Durable, poor engine quality
Images for this Review
(click to see full-size image)
User submitted photo
+158points
176out of 194found this review helpful.
Review 2 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Portland, OR
Age Range:55 to 64
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

GREAT TRIMMER...FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS!!! Steel Camshaft!

PostedJune 15, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
OK, so I read all the reviews, including the bad ones, and I thought, this sounds like people are not reading the instructions. And that's got to be it. I followed the instructions (which I thought were very clear and concise), assembled the unit, followed the starting instructions and it started on the second pull. I think it would have started on the first pull if I had pulled hard enough, but I needed to get a feel for it first. It starts every time on the first or second pull.
I ran it for a little more than an hour (about 1&1/2 tanks of fuel) cutting through some verh high grass, weeds and scotch broom. I really wanted to see if it would do it without purchasing the brush cutter head...and it DID! I stalled it once when too much stuff got wrapped around the head, but otherwise it ran great with LOTS of power.
If you read all the way through the instructions, you'll see that they give you the procedure to go through to adjust the valves (recommeneded every 25 hours and quite simple) so I took it apart because I wanted to see the camshaft myself. Mine is steel. I tried a magnet on it and it stuck. What about the plastic ones noted by several reviewers? The only thing I can think of is that Ryobi might have these made in different parts of the world, and they somehow got away with some plastic camshafts. Mine is made in China and it's definitely steel.
Pull cord wont pull? I bet you stored this unit (even for an hour) with the motor hanging down and the shaft up (you'll notice that they don't store them that way in the store!). If that's the case (the instructions clearly state NOT to do this) you just filled the cylinder up with oil from the crankcase and you got a hydraulic lock. Just let the unit sit level on its feet for a while to get the oil to drain back into the sump and it will start. It will probably smoke for a while till it clears.
Smoking motor? I bet you either put too much oil in the sump (you only need to put in what they give you), OR you tilted the unit too far while it was running. If you're used to a 2-stroke trimmer, you can get away with doing that for a few seconds, but with a 4-stroke you won't. They're not designed to do that. And it does use 20W50 motor oil, so you should buy some and keep it on hand because I'm sure that since this is an air-cooled engine, it's going to use some oil on a regular basis.
Won't start after storing? I'll bet you're not using any kind of gas preservative. Let's face it, our gas has lots of Ethanol in it which attracts water and causes the gas to break down. I use Sta-Bil in my gas can all year long and I've never had clogged carb problems with any of my small gas engines. If you want your small engines to run well, use a little octane booster as well. This helps keep the ratio of gas-ethanol under control and helps eliminate the gas breakdown into the gums that clog carb jets, etc. The good news is that you don't need a separate gas can to mix oil in! YESSS!!
My only Con for this unit would be that they should put a cover over the head joint where the gearbox and the spinning trimmer head come together. Although this joint has a fairly small clearance, it's not small enough to stop fine grass from getting wrapped around it. It's not a big deal, but I had to stop and clean it regularly...probably because the stuff I was trimming was so tough and long (up to 3 feet!). There is perfect flange just above the joint, and I'm going to try installing a hose clamp on it to cover the joint and see if that helps.
I don't think you can go wrong with this unit IF YOU READ AND FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS!! I'm very pleased with mine...in case you can't tell.
Pros: Cuts Well, Easy to Use, Good Size & Weight, Durable, Powerful, Great Engine, no oil and gas to mix!
Cons: trimmer head clogging
+5points
5out of 5found this review helpful.
Review 3 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from New Mexico, USA
Age Range:45 to 54
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Power of 30cc

PostedDecember 17, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
This unit is for a man, sorry ladies, I'm not being a hater, but it is a bit on the heavy side. Let's face the realities, these things are not meant for the average ladies out there. Ok, there may be the exceptions to the rule and for those zena warriors, my respect for handling these items. The price of the unit is on the high side but it has versititlity written all over it. The attachments are the plus. One unit and it hangs up well in the shed. The other attachments also hang up well. I hate cluter. This unit would reach ten stars if it was less expensive but well you get what you paid for. The 30cc are strong enough for the cultivator and the edger which I purchased and I found out by mistake that this unit can also integrate to other brand attachments. I purchased an item in the swap store and failed to remember the brand name. When I got home the brand names didn't match, I thought I purchased an item that would have no use but when I snapped it in, the unit worked without any issues. So, you will not be disappointed. Gabe NM.
Pros: Cuts Well, All In One, Easy to Use, Sturdy, Accurate, Durable, Powerful, Great Engine, Easy to Store, Long-Lasting
Cons: could use a strap, not to heavy but enough
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 4 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Richmond, TX
Age Range:55 to 64
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Easy start & powerful

PostedDecember 10, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Easy start, well balanced and powerful. Just what I needed.
Pros: Cuts Well, All In One, Easy to Use, Good Size & Weight, Durable, Powerful, Great Engine, Easy to Store
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 5 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer

DO NOT BUY!!!

PostedJune 14, 2013
Overall rating 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Features 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
Quality 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Ease of use 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
Value 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
Purchased this trimmer 3 years ago for use around the home. Very little power/speed, got hung up on things constantly. Mid-way through the season it started randomly shutting off while i was trimming, and by the end of the season it had stopped working all together. I have since purchased a STIHL- FS 56 RC-E and can honestly say i will never buy any other brand. It was only $50 more than this ryobi and it powers thru everything, never shuts off or gets hung up, and came with a shoulder strap, safety glasses and a 4 year warranty to boot. Spend the extra money and get the STIHL.
Cons: Not Durable, very poor quality
+10points
10out of 10found this review helpful.
Review 6 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Annandale, VA
Age Range:35 to 44
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:Professional

BEWARE OF THIS UNIT.. AND HOW YOU STORE IT...

PostedNovember 5, 2014
Overall rating 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Features 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Quality 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Ease of use 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Value 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
BEWARE OF THIS TRIMMER.. IT'S ALL ABOUT HOW YOU STORE IT.. IF YOU DON'T STORE IT CORRECTLY THE OIL WILL LEAK AND CAUSE A HYDRAULIC LOCK RENDERING THE UNIT INOPERABLE. I RETURNED MY TO HOME DEPOT 2 MONTHS AFTER BUYING IT BASED ON RYOBI'S INSTRUCTIONS. THEY SENT IT TO THE WARRANTY REPAIR CENTER AND RETURNED IT WITHOUT FIXING IT. STATING THAT IT'S NOT WORTH FIXING IT AND NOT COVERED BY THE WARRANTY..
RYOBI MAKES THIS INFERIOR PRODUCT WITH THIS MANUFACTURER DEFECT AND THEY REFUSE TO FIX IT. DON'T BUY THESE UNITS. THEY ARE HORRIBLE AND THE WARRANTY IS NO GOOD!!!! IT CAN FAIL IN THE FIRST MONTH AND YOU WILL NOT HAVE ANY WARRANTY. IT'S NOT WORTH THE HEADACHE.. RYOBI NEEDS TO RECALL THESE UNITS... PLEASE SOMEONE, START A CLASS ACTION SUIT AGAINST THE COMPANY.
Cons: Limited Features, Not Durable, No Instructions
-1point
0out of 1found this review helpful.
Review 7 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Madison, WI, USA
Age Range:25 to 34
,
Gender:Female
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Good Multifunction Tool, But Not Recommended For Just Trimming

PostedMay 30, 2013
Overall rating 
3.0 out of 5.0
3 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Ease of use 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
Value 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Works well, nice that it can become a 'multitool' but for those that just want a weed trimmer probably not the best.
Pluses, minuses:
+ Feels like the motor is the right amount of power for the job
+ Easy to start up and use
- Unbalanced, feels like you are fighting to hold it properly
- "Weed guard" at the base doesn't cover as much as it could so weed bits fly up and hit you as you work
- Doesn't feel like it was designed for right-handed people as the controls for the motor seem to be in weird places
Pros: Cuts Well, Sturdy, Good Size & Weight, Durable, Powerful, Light Weight
+11points
11out of 11found this review helpful.
Review 8 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Caldwell idaho
Age Range:35 to 44
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

best weedeater ever

PostedJuly 22, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Easy to start. Light weight, very powerful. And love that I can get other attachment for it. It was a great buy. And not as load as the 2 strokes. Its so nice not having to mix fuel ever time I wanna use it. Don't have to worry about the kids burning it up!!!!!
Pros: Cuts Well, Easy to Use, All In One, Sturdy, Good Size & Weight, Durable, Powerful, Great Engine, Self-Propelled, Easy to Store, Light Weight, Long-Lasting
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.
Review 9 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer

It worked the first few times and then never able to use again

PostedOctober 17, 2014
Overall rating 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Features 
3.0 out of 5.0
3 out of 5
Quality 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Ease of use 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Value 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
When I first got the trimmer, I liked the fact that it ran only on gas and started easily. I was able to use it (with the pole saw attachment) on 2 different occasions. On the third try, I had difficulty starting it, but finally got it going and was able to use it. On the 4th try, it would not start at all. The starter cord completely locked and I was not able to start it. It was sent in for repair but it still didn't work when I got it back. For the price, it is a very poor quality product and I would not recommend it (or any other Ryobi) product to anyone after making this purchase.
Pros: All In One
Cons: Difficult to Use, Not Durable
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 10 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Louisiana, USA
Age Range:35 to 44
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Did last the year....

PostedAugust 7, 2013
Overall rating 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
My 2 cycle trimmer died after years of service and wanted to purchase a 4cycle to replace it. The ryobi was a great price and looking like a good unit to me. The 1st day it was great. two weeks later i needed it again and it was hard to start. It remained hard to start for a few months until one day POP. While running the trimmer at idle walking through the yard the trimmer made a POP noise and lost all compression. No warranty past 90 days so i opened the case up. IT HAS PLASTIC GEARS... Trimmers get hot.. plastic weakens...then pop your trimmer blows up...
Cons: Not Durable
+10points
11out of 12found this review helpful.
Review 11 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Michigan
Age Range:45 to 54
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:Professional

Worthless, piece of junk

PostedSeptember 20, 2014
Overall rating 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Features 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
Quality 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Ease of use 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Value 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
Read Broman's review. I experienced the same thing, except it took the second time to run before the stop switch didn't work. the second time I tried to start it the motor was seized. Home depot is worthless also, with the way the weather was, it was almost 5 weeks in between uses, therefore after 30 days. I took it back this morning and was told after 30 days they don't refund gas products. No where did i find this written in their warranty on the receipt, despicable. DO NOT BUY THIS TRIMMER. Called Ryobi about trimmer, and they want to take it to somebody to verify it is broke, if not than i pay for the service, nice.
Pros: no mixing of gas
Cons: Not Durable
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 12 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Calgary, AB
Age Range:25 to 34
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Read the manual fully.

PostedJuly 28, 2012
Overall rating 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Features 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Quality 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Ease of use 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Value 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
This thing is really easy to over fill with oil which is where most of the problems are coming from. It specifically states to have the unit level on the ground and fill using a funnel. Then, while still laying on the ground check the level of the oil. Originally I filled it up too much and had problems like many here did. Oil flying out of odd places, tons of smoke, engine dying every 5 minutes and not wanting to start and lack lust performance. I emptied some oil out because I had filled it incorrectly and followed the manual to a T. Trimmer ran like a champ after that. 2 pull start, no more smoke, power like it advertised and never died the rest of the time I used it. Have yet to see about longevity on this particular unit but initial quality suggests it's decent for what you pay.
Pros: Cuts Well, Easy to Use, Powerful
+12points
12out of 12found this review helpful.
Review 13 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer

great purchase

PostedNovember 9, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
easy to use and would recommend to buy. my fifth from this company.
Pros: Easy to Use
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 14 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Colorado Springs, CO
Age Range:25 to 34
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Great purchase

PostedOctober 13, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
A lot of the reviews on here is of re trimmer not having enough power, or say the engine won't turn over. First if you follow the instructions to get the trimmer going it will work fine. Second you must store the unit with the power head up. The will prevent the hydrolic lock some are experiencing. This unit has plenty of power. More than my echo srm-225. My only gripe is at first my coupler was hard to attach. I had to bent it out. And Oslo the air filter is small on it.
Pros: Durable, Powerful, Great Engine, Cuts Well, Easy to Use, All In One, Good Size & Weight, Light Weight, easy to set up
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 15 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer

Best Buy Ever!!!!!

PostedOctober 21, 2014
Overall rating 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Best weed eater I ever used. Little heavier than 2 cycle but don't have to mix the gas and oil. Love it!!!!!
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 16 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Florida, USA
Age Range:35 to 44
,
Gender:Female
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Leaking oil

PostedJune 10, 2013
Overall rating 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
Features 
3.0 out of 5.0
3 out of 5
Quality 
1.0 out of 5.0
1 out of 5
Ease of use 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
Value 
3.0 out of 5.0
3 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
My husband and I replaced our Ryobi 2 cycle with this after the pull cord stopped engaging. The 4 cycle worked great for the first 6 months and then began to act up. The trimmer would start, but not continue to run or it would sputter while it ran. Last weekend I went out to start it and the pull cord seemed to be stuck and wouldn't pull. I gave it a pull and heard a strange gurgling sound as it engaged. Oil.....oil all over the place, down my arm and all over my driveway. There is now a large puddle in my garage. I have several accessories for this but they are all trash bound. I have seen good reviews on a different trimmer and I will go with that, as I do not wish to deal with the headache of another Ryobi.
Pros: interchangable accessories
Cons: Not Durable
+5points
5out of 5found this review helpful.
Review 17 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Fallston, MD, USA
Age Range:25 to 34
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

lots of power

PostedJuly 22, 2012
Overall rating 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Features 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Quality 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Ease of use 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Value 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
At first I was a little concerned about the low end power of the four stroke engine. But after using it WOW, much more power than the 2 stroke trimmers I've had. As stated in the other reviews, the gas tank is small and you can not edge with this trimmer due to carb. flooding (can be corrected by purchasing the edger attachment). But other than that It is easy to start cold or warm, the power head works great with the tiller attachment, and no more mixing of gas and oil!
Pros: Easy to Use, Powerful, Great Engine
Cons: small gas tank
+9points
9out of 9found this review helpful.
Review 18 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Syracuse, NY

Great Trimmer for the money...negative reviews may be user error

PostedJune 24, 2012
Overall rating 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Features 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
Quality 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Ease of use 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Value 
5.0 out of 5.0
5 out of 5
My previous trimmer was a 2cycle Ryobi that lasted over 10 years. (Let me also preface this review by saying that I am by no means a mechanic.)
I bought this because it was a great value at $179, so for under $200 I got a 4cycle trimmer.
I have owned this trimmer since June 2011, now 1 year old. It has never been trouble starting, never leaked oil or any of the other issues described here by other people claiming that they purchased the the S430.
Here is what I have found with the trimmer:
It didn't seem to have the same torque as my old 2cycle but for good reason, when I replaced the trimmer line I discovered that somehow I had collected pieces of pantyhose around the spool shaft along with long strands of vegetation. After removing the jam, the machine was not lacking torque.
Replacing the line was difficult when using high performance .095 line because the shape is triangular. I switched to the single line attachment. (The manual is poorly written on how to re-spool the line and is very small print and I have great eyesight)
Starting is easy, I press the fuel priming bulb until I see fuel bubbling and no more, then I set the choke to full, pull once and then set to half and the unit usually starts on the second or third pull. Once it starts, I hold the throttle on full for 5-10 seconds, let off the throttle and switch to on position. I always run the machine out of fuel, never once do I put the machine away with fuel in it. Also, I always check the oil level and the level remains constant.
When I run the machine, I DO NOT tip the machine, I run it with the throttle trigger pointing down, I have NEVER had oil leak from the unit, EVER. I do not rotate the engine, when I store the unit it is stored horizontally and out of fuel. I would recommend only adding enough fuel to complete your job.
During operation I only run the machine as high as it would require to do the job, there is no reason to run continuous full throttle, I suspect that this may be the reason some people are overheating their engines and causing shutdown.
Restarting a warm or hot engine, I typically re-set the choke to half choke and pull twice (I do not hit the primer bulb). If it doesn't start on the second pull, I remove the choke and set it to the on position, the unit usually starts on the next pull. I hold the throttle full for a couple seconds and then let off.
Improvements I would like to see on the unit:
Better written manual, the one that comes with the unit is terrible and poorly written and may be a big reason for so many problems.
Incorporate a shaft protector to prevent weeds and other objects from twisting around the line spool shaft causing the head to slow down or lock up. I will look at modifying my unit to prevent this in the future.
As for all the bad reviews, I suspect that a very large number of them are a result of user error or they have some sort of agenda as I have not experienced a single one of their problems, no smoke, no dripping oil, no hard starting, no engine seizures, no failed parts, no broken shafts, no quitting.
There are higher quality trimmers available (this is not a Stihl) BUT, if you want to spend under $200 for a respectable home trimmer, the Ryobi 4cycle will perform for you but you have to use some common sense. This is not a $400 unit and shouldn't be reviewed as such.
I also have several attachments, blower, edger and rototiller.
+25points
27out of 29found this review helpful.
Review 19 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from North Canton, OH

Read reviews and bought it anyways; bad decision

PostedMay 3, 2011
Overall rating 
2.0 out of 5.0
2 out of 5
No, I do not recommend this product.
I read the reviews but went to the store to consult with the department specialist: After I asked him about the return rate for this specific model, he confirmed that almost none of these every come back.
I liked the option of the 2 head types.
I like the power, sound, weight and balance of the unit when it ran.
I figured the unit would be hard to start the first time as it ships dry, without oil. Followed the instructions exactly, filled the oil, filled with fresh gas, primed, etc... So when it took 10 minutes and a whole lot of pulling to start it I wasn't surpised. For the first 5 minutes it wouldn't idle unless it was choked; it seemed to finally warm up and I was able to drop it down to half-choke after another 5 minutes. Then I put it in run and used it for 10 minutes, just to break it in and make sure the oil was well spread throughout the machine. I then went and mowed my entire yard. Came back to restart the unit and it took almost 15 minutes of pulling and it wouldn't stay started even on full choke (stalled instantly on half choke or run). Finally got it running and ran it for another 10 minutes, hoping it was just a fluke. But had the same starting experience the following afternoon.
So the good news is that Home Depot took the return without hesitation.
+13points
13out of 13found this review helpful.
Review 20 for 4-Cycle 30 cc Attachment Capable Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer
from Tucson, Az
Age Range:25 to 34
,
Gender:Male
Home Improvement Profile:DIYer

Great Value and Product!

PostedOctober 7, 2014
Overall rating 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Features 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Quality 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Ease of use 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
Value 
4.0 out of 5.0
4 out of 5
easy to start and no mixing! Super light weight with attachment options. Great product and Great Value! Would Recommend for the Home Owner and/or contractor!
Pros: Easy to Use, Powerful
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
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