How to Sharpen Garden Shears – Step By Step Guide

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After about six weeks of use, your garden shears get blunt. Despite doing the routine regular cleaning, the sap gets into the axel making the shears gummed up. At such a point, your shears need a thorough cleaning and sharpening to get them efficient again. There are a number of ways to sharpen your garden shears, you can use a grinder, sharpener, or file. While grinders do well, they aren’t that DIY and shall need much knowledge and experience. The best way to sharpen your garden shears by yourself is by using a file. In the guide below, we show you how to sharpen garden shears using a file.

How to Sharpen Garden Shears 1

What You Will Need

Before we go into the process, gather the following items. They can be easily found in your home garden store.

Sap remover

As hinted earlier, it’s normal for garden shears to develop stubborn gum from accumulated sup. We have to clean this up before using the file to avoid spoiling it and getting poor sharpening results. If you do not have a sap remover, you can easily get one online. Nail polish works great in removing sap, if you got some, you can use it instead.

ARS Blade Cleaner
34 Reviews
ARS Blade Cleaner
  • Brand New Product
  • Always keep your tools in the best condition using this specialized cleaner . The cleaner easily removes sap and dirt with just a spray and a wipe. Made only of safe ingredients. This cleaner is allowed to be transported via air or ocean.

A metal file

You shall need a metal file to sharpen your garden shears. A blade sharpener works very fine also and is easier to use. Get one of these and prepare to get to work.

WORKPRO 8” Flat File – Durable Steel File to Sharpen Tools and Deburr, Comfortable Anti-Slip Grip, Double Cut and Single Cut – Deburr Tool and Tool Sharpener for Professionals and DIY (W051001)
124 Reviews
WORKPRO 8” Flat File – Durable Steel File to Sharpen Tools and Deburr, Comfortable Anti-Slip Grip, Double Cut and Single Cut – Deburr Tool and Tool Sharpener for Professionals and DIY (W051001)
  • FLAT FILE – Do you need to sharpen tools or deburr something? The WORKPRO Flat File is what you need. It is expertly crafted to help you get the job done
  • DURABLE DESIGN – Constructed of high carbon hardened steel, you can use this flat file to deburr items or take a sharp edge off with the durable coated teeth. It’s a multifunctional tool sharpener that measures 8”
  • COMFORTABLE GRIP – This deburr tool has an ergonomic design with a comfortable rubber anti-slip grip, so you can safely get the job done
  • MULTIPURPOSE TOOL – A double cut on one side of the flat file and a single cut on the other side makes it a great multipurpose tool for professionals and DIYers alike
  • TOOLBOX ESSENTIAL – No matter how big your project, this flat file is a toolbox essential to ensure you have what you need to get the job done right the first time

Your blunt garden shears

Have your pruning shears ready.

blunt garden shears

How to Sharpen Garden Shears – Step by Step

Make a sharpening area

Before you start the actual sharpening activity, you need to prepare an area. This is because sharpening produces metal grains that are hazardous to your health when ingested. Choose an area away from food. Find a sheet, paper, or anything else to lay down in the area so they can collect the filings for easy cleaning and disposal.

Clean up the blades of your shears

The gum present in your gardening shears isn’t safe for a file. The gum gets into your file’s grooves making it slide over your shear blades instead of sharpening. Therefore, you need to make sure that the blades are clean before you proceed to sharpen.

To do this, we shall use the earlier mentioned sup remover or nail polish remover. Get some cotton or rag then soak it with your sap remover or nail polish. Apply it to your garden shears, more sore the gummed-up parts and let all the gum disappear. Now get a rag or cotton ball to clean up the blade making it ready for sharpening.

ARS Blade Cleaner
34 Reviews
ARS Blade Cleaner
  • Brand New Product
  • Always keep your tools in the best condition using this specialized cleaner . The cleaner easily removes sap and dirt with just a spray and a wipe. Made only of safe ingredients. This cleaner is allowed to be transported via air or ocean.

Sharpen correctly while minding the angle

The blades of your garden shears have a single at which they slide towards the edge. This angle is very important since it is the one that makes the shears sharp. While sharpening, first check the angle of your shears and keep by it. Never sharpen the edge directly.

To do it right, open up your shears fully. Place your file on the angle towards the edge of your shear blades and make one swift move away from your body. Repeat this process for the entire edge of your blade until it is sharp.

File the back of the blades

File the back of the blades

After filing the angled side of your garden shears, you shall notice that they feel rugged or rough instead of sharp. You need to clear this by slightly sharpening the backside of your shears. Lightly and gently pass your file behind the blades of your garden shears to remove the rough feeling.

Read: How to Store Garden Tools Outside

How to Maintain Garden Shears

Poor usage and maintainable practices make garden shears go blunt frequently. Much sharpening eats up your shears wear fast and therefore shortens their lifetime. It is good to take good care of your garden shears to ensure a long effective serving life. Here are some tips on how to maintain your garden shears.

Clean your shears

Clean up the blades of your shears

After every use, it is good to always clean your garden shears. As they work, sup sticks on the blades and other parts. This sup causes your shears to be blunt easily and strenuous to use. To clean your shears, prepare some soapy water and use a sponge to wash off the sup and any other residue. If your garden shears can be easily detached, it’s advisable to wash them while apart since it’s easier and effective.

After washing your garden shears, avoid rust by either drying them in the sun or wiping them with a cloth. Remember to oil your shears in order to make them rust-proof even in their storage areas.

The joint part of your shears needs to be greased for swift movement and cutting during work. Get your regular farm grease and apply generously around the joining area. Wipeout any excess lubricant.

Disinfecting your garden shears

After every use, it is a good practice to disinfect your garden shears. Remember that garden shears are used on different plants in the garden. Some plants may be infected, to avoid spreading the infection to more plants, you need to disinfect your shears after every use.

Choose readily available or reachable disinfectants such as alcohol, chlorine, or any other. Dip your garden shears in the disinfectant then wipe them with a clean dry cloth. Sometimes you shall have to disinfect your shears in between uses. For instance, if you were pruning and realize that you’ve worked on an infected plant, it is advisable that you stop wiping your shears with a disinfectant before continuing.

Conclusion: How to Sharpen Garden Shears

Knowing how to sharpen garden shears is a must-know for any serious gardener. This hide shows you the best way to restore the sharpness of your garden shears. While we do not concentrate on complex machine sharpening, you can go for it after too long use and sharpening with a file.

Always have your garden shears clean and ready to get you sharpening. It is good to practice strict routine management of your garden shears to make them easier to sharpen.

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Last update on 2021-04-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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