How to choose Plug Implement & Aerator

Plug Implement & Aerator Rake

Choosing a Plug Implement & Aerator? We created this guide, so you can find the best Plug Implement & Aerators and Harrows on the market.

We’ve analyzed all the Plug Implement & Aerators and Harrows on the market, looking at reviews, cost, ease of purchase, and many other factors.

Thus, we have compiled a ranking of the best Plug Implement & Aerator.

Plug Aerator

Tow Plug Aerator: In a nutshell

  • Tow-behind aerators offer a wide range of different benefits depending on what your specific needs are.
  • If you want to aerate your lawn, a small tow-behind with spoons is your best bet.
  • For property owners who want to aerate farmland or other types of land, a heavier aerator with tow and spikes is a better option.

What is Tow Behind Plug Aerator?

The tow behind plug aerator is a great choice for those who need to aerate large areas of soil. It is attached to a lawnmower, ATV, or tractor that pulls the aerator and drills holes in heavy clay soil.

You can aerate larger yards with a tow-behind aerator than with a hand aerator. This is a great option for aerating heavily compacted and the toughest soil, which would be difficult to do with a hand aerator.

Best Tow-Behind Plug Aerator

Brinly PA-40BH Tow Behind Plug Aerator 40″

Brinly PA-40BH Tow Behind Plug Aerator 40"


  • Tines are heat-treated for strength.
  • Works safely on turns & uneven terrain.
  • Includes a single transport lever to engage transport mode using the 10″ semi-pneumatic rubber tread tires.
  • Universal Hitch: a single pin, universal Hitch easily attaches to every lawn tractor and most ztrs and ATVs.
  • Easy to maintain: each plugging spoon is individually serviceable, allowing for quick and easy replacement in the unlikely event of a Tine breakage.

Brinly’s high-performance 40″ Tow-Behind Plug Aerator is the best method for helping your lawn breathe. The 24 heat-treated 16-gauge steel plug spoons pull 3″ soil plugs from the lawn, decompressing the soil and allowing water, seed and fertilizer to reach the root system. The fully enclosed all-steel weight tray offers flexibility for adding additional weight; up to 150 lbs. For aerating heavily compacted soil or hard clay.

Agri-Fab 40″ Tow Plug Aerator

Agri-Fab 45-0518 40" Tow Plug Aerator


  • 40-Inch wide working width.
  • 24 Galvanized and sharpened plug coring knives.
  • Flat proof transport tires.
  • Single lever transport handle folds for storage.
  • Weight tray capacity 140 pounds.

Agri-Fab 48-Inch Tow Plug Aerator

Agri-Fab 48-Inch Tow Plug Aerator


  • 32 galvanized knives to penetrate the soil easily.
  • Pulls plug up to 3 inches deep for a thicker and healthier lawn.
  • Flat-free tires for smooth transport.
  • Simple-to-use cantilever transport handle for easy raising and lowering.

Black Boar ATV/UTV Cultipacker Implement

Black Boar ATV/UTV Cultipacker Implement


  • Breaks up clods, packs down loose soil, and forces seeds in the seedbed for better water and nutrient absorption.
  • The parallel linkage design maintains the correct implement angle as it is lowered.
  • Lightweight design is easy to install with one person and minimizes interference with maneuvering.
  • Superior range of motion without having to move pins or manually drop the hitch.
  • Made of durable steel with a streamlined, minimalist design. For use with Black Boar Implement Lift.
  • Requires 66000-Motorized Lift or 66013-Manual Lift to operate.

Black Boar ATV/UTV Plugger Implement

Black Boar ATV/UTV Plugger Implement


  • Aerates Ground: Removes plugs, allowing for increased air flow, water flow, and nutrient absorption.
  • Parallel Linkage Design: Maintains the correct angle as the implement is lowered.
  • Lightweight and Easy to Maneuver: Implement is lightweight, easy to install with one person, and minimizes interference with maneuvering.
  • Superior Range of Lift Motion: Does not require having to move pins or manually drop the hitch.
  • Durable Construction: Made of durable steel with a streamlined, minimalist design.

Brinly PA-482BH-A Tow Behind Plug Aerator

Brinly PA-482BH-A Tow Behind Plug Aerator


  • 32 heat-treated, 16-gauge Steel plugging spoons penetrate compacted soil and remove up to 3-inch plugs of soil.
  • Durable, all-steel design with Fully-Enclosed Weight tray holds up to 200 pounds.
  • For crossing drives, walks, and rooted areas, Brinly plug Aerator includes a single transport lever to engage transport mode using the 10″ semi-pneumatic rubber tread tires.
  • Universal Hitch: a single pin, universal Hitch easily attaches to every lawn tractor and most ztrs and ATVs.

Brinly SAT2-40BH-P Tow Behind Spike Aerator

Brinly SAT2-40BH-P Tow Behind Spike Aerator


  • 11 tine stars with 8″ Diameters each feature 12 spike tips to penetrate soil up to 2″ In depth.
  • Brinly’s Patent-Pending 3-D tines in galvanized steel inhibit rust and resist bending, even in compacted soil.
  • Features an all-steel design with extra-strength double tow bar.
  • A 5/8 in. solid steel axle and nylon spacers between each star deliver increased durability.
  • Rigid weight tray holds up to 150 pounds of extra weight for maximum soil penetration and depth.

Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator 48in

Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator 48in


  • 32 separate coring plug spikes penetrate compacted soil to a depth of 2 1/2in.
  • Weight tray is built-in and supports up to 140 lbs., so you can easily add cement blocks or other weight for added ground penetration.
  • 10in. pneumatic tires roll smoothly over varied terrain.
  • Pin-style hitch allows for quick and easy hitching or removal on ATVs or riding lawn mowers, with no additional equipment necessary.
  • Durable powder-coat finish for long life.

Types of aerators

There are several types of lawn aerators. They all do the same thing, but some are better than others. The type you need depends on your soil type, your budget, and the size of your lawn.
For example, if you have clay soil, you will need a more powerful lawn aerator. If you want to aerate a quarter-acre or smaller lawn, a small aerator is best. There are essentially two types of aerators.

  • Spike aerator
  • Plug aerator

Spike aerator

It has hard spikes or needles on a metal roller that leaves holes in the soil. It’s easy to use and maintain, and you get holes in the ground up to 2 inches deep. Because the spike aerator does not remove soil, the holes in the ground expand quickly and close in a short time. A spike aerator is best for soil that is not heavily compacted.
On heavy clay soil, you will not get the desired results. Also, its effectiveness is limited because of the small, narrow holes it creates on uneven surfaces. It generally costs less than a cork aerator and is suitable for smaller yards.

Plug aerator

Sometimes the plug aerator is also called a basic aerator. This has several hollow tines mounted on a metal drum. These tines dig deep into the soil and pull kernels out of the ground. Removing the soil from the ground is more efficient than moving it. This keeps the hole open longer, allowing nutrients, water, and air to reach the roots. Best for most soil types, including highly compacted clay soil.
A plug aerator is great for large yards, and you can choose a plug aerator that can be attached directly to lawn tractor or lawnmower.

Why do you need aeration?

Aeration is the secret to achieving perfectly green, healthy, and lush grass. Indeed, all the seeding, watering, fertilizing and tender loving care in the world won’t make a lawn green if essential elements cannot reach the lawn’s root system.

The need for aerating arises when compacted soil blocks water, oxygen, and nutrients from getting to the lawn’s roots. Compaction can be caused by heavy foot or vehicle traffic or heavy clay soil.

Compacted soil not only impedes grass growth due to blocking vital nutrients, but it also hinders the roots from digging deep into the soil. If roots cannot reach the soil’s nutrients, grass will weaken and become susceptible to disease, insects, and invasive weeds. In addition to impeding grass growth, compacted soil also leads to unwanted thatch buildup. Aeration helps enhance the production of microorganisms that help organic material decompose properly.

By means of poking holes into the soil or removing plugs of soil, aeration exposes grass roots to nutrients and water and gives your lawn much-needed breathing room.

Choosing the right tool for aeration

Most homeowners would agree that the most efficient and time-saving aeration tools are tow-behind spike or plug aerators.

Look for aerators that attach easily to your lawnmower or lawn tractor using a hitch pin. Choosing between a spike aerator and a plug aerator really depends on the severity of the compaction issue.

Spike aerators normally feature spiked stars or blades that pierce the ground and thatch layer. For lawns with minor to moderate compaction
issues, or for aerating prior to seeding or fertilizing, a spike aerator can be the ideal tool. They can be used more frequently in high-traffic areas and don’t interfere with the lawn’s visual appeal. For best results, choose a spike aerator that features a steel tray for adding additional weight (to maximize tine penetration).

Tow-behind plug, or core, aerators are ideal for severely compacted or heavy clay soil. The hollow plugging spoons slice into the ground and pull out small “plugs” of soil. These 2-3” plugs will be deposited on the surface of the lawn as the aerator continues moving. The holes made by a plug aerator allow for rapid root growth and nourishment. It’s important to leave the dirt plugs on the surface of your lawn for a few days, as they contain important microorganisms that feed on thatch. If needed, the plugs can be broken up and raked back into the grass. Just allow them to dry out for a few days prior so they’ll break up easily.

If you’re considering a plug aerator, look for individually replaceable plugging spoons. This allows for easy servicing. And just like with spike aerators, you’ll want a sturdy, tough weight tray which will assist in achieving maximum tine penetration in hard soil.

Choose an appropriate time

Much like dethatching, you’ll want to aerate cool-season grasses (Kentucky bluegrass, fescue, and ryegrass) in the late summer or early fall. Warm-season grasses such as Zoysia, Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Buffalo grass should be aerated in the late spring or early summer.

If your soil is sandy, you’ll most likely only need to aerate once per year. If you have heavy clay soil, be prepared to aerate at least twice per year.

Consider aerating just before fertilizing or seeding as well. Aeration will help fertilizer or seed to better penetrate the soil, thus providing you the best results. Note that 2-in-1 tools like aerator-spreaders allow you to complete both jobs at the same time.

Don’t aerate during times of drought and during extreme heat. Aeration during these times not only allows too much moisture to evaporate from the soil, but it also stresses and weakens the grass.

The ideal time to aerate is after a good overnight shower or approximately 2-3 days after heavy rain.

If Mother Nature isn’t cooperating with your watering needs, you can always water the day before aerating. Remember, soil needs to be moist but not sopping wet. If you’re not sure if the soil is ready, use a screwdriver to pierce an area of the lawn. If the screwdriver stabs through the soil with just a little resistance, the soil is just right.

Tow-Behind Plug Aerator Buying Criteria

Ease of maneuverability

Maneuverability is a very important term for choosing a tow behind aerator spreader. Your machine needs to be able to move easily across the lawn. So, you need to consider its wheel pattern. Can the machine move in tight places? Can it effortlessly pass sharp corners?

The width of the aerator

There are several factors to consider when choosing an aerator harness. One of the first choices is the size of your property. For larger properties, a wider harness behind a plugged aerator will result in fewer passes. But if you have a lot of tighter spaces, a smaller unit may make more sense.

Number of basic aeration spoons

The number of core aeration spoons or teeth determines how many holes you can get in each pass. The distance between these aeration spoons determines how close or far away they can create aeration.

For best results, it is recommended that the forks be up to 3 inches apart. Smaller cork aerators usually contain 10 to 12 spoons, while larger and wider ones can contain 40 to 54 aeration spoons.

A larger number of spoons means that more cores can be removed in one pass. You should also look for removable aeration spoons to replace any worn or damaged parts.

Maximum Core Depth

It is important to remember that the purpose of a heavy-duty harness behind a cork aerator is to increase air and water penetration, as well as promote deeper root development. As a result, the amount of dirt removed will be determined by the depth to which your spoon aerators dig.

Pneumatic tires and no-spill tires

Tires are pneumatic, which means they are filled with air. They give a sense of flexibility but are prone to flattening. Newer non-skid tires are made of solid polyurethane and won’t deflate; however, they are more expensive. These tend to be more expensive.


The highest quality aerator is usually made of reinforced or galvanized steel tines, which do not rust and last longer. A machine that has a sturdy body such as steel, reinforced, or galvanized equates to durability.

Option to add extra weight

A higher-capacity aerator allows you to place extra weight on it so the tines can dig deeper into the ground. This can help you cope with stiff clay soil or heavily compressed soil with more foot traffic.

Plug Implement & Aerator Price:

Tow Behind Plug Aerator under $500:

  • Brinly PA-482BH-A Tow Behind Plug Aerator;
  • Black Boar ATV/UTV Cultipacker Implement.

Tow Behind Plug Aerator under $400:

  • Agri-Fab 45-0299 48-Inch Tow Plug Aerator.

Tow Behind Plug Aerator under $300:

  • Brinly PA-40BH Tow Behind Plug Aerator;
  • Agri-Fab 45-0518 40″ Tow Plug Aerator;
  • Black Boar ATV/UTV Plugger Implement;
  • Strongway Tow-Behind Plug Aerator 48in.

Tow Behind Plug Aerator under $200:

  • Brinly SAT2-40BH-P Tow Behind Spike Aerator.


Which is better plug or spike aerator?

Spike aeration is suitable for small lawns with mild compaction while plug aeration is good for fixing severe soil compaction and on large areas.

How big should aeration plugs be?

The plugs should be between 1/2 and 3/4 inches in diameter. After aerating, soil plugs will be covering your lawn. These should break down and disappear after a week or two. You can also break them up with a lawnmower, but you may have to sharpen your blades afterward.

David West is an experienced gardener and former salesman at a garden tools and supplies store. He has tended his own garden plot for many years and has extensive knowledge of plant care, landscaping and garden design.

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