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How do you maintain pruning shears?

Anyone who has a garden also has pruning shears lying around somewhere. But do you also maintain them like you should? If you take good care of your pruning shears you will extend the life of the tool.

Another advantage: if you work with sharp pruning tools you prevent injuries and decrease the risk of infections because of fungi or bacteria on the plant. For that reason we will give a couple of tips and tricks to keep your pruning shears sharp and clean. Also good to know: this information also applies to hedge shears and branch loppers.

Maintaining pruning shears is relatively simple. You need to keep your shears clean, sharp and flexible.

Better safe than sorry

The first step to clean shears is making sure they don’t get dirty in the first place. For instance, never place your shears in the sand. The sand can get caught in between the spring or the hinging parts and damage the shears. If you do want to store your shears as you use it we recommend using a holster. You attach the holster to your belt to make sure you will always have it close when you need it.

Shine bright like a diamond

After using your shears you need to remove any left-over plant juice. With a dry piece of cloth you can remove almost anything from your shears. Still not clean enough? Use warm water and a little bit of detergent to be able to remove the dirt from the blades with a brush. Properly rinse of any access detergent with clean water and properly dry the blades. This is key to prevent any rust.

Keeping it flexible

After cleaning the shears we recommend adding a drop of oil to the hinging parts of the spring. You do so to prevent rust and to make sure the blades don’t get stuck. You could, for instance, use Ballistol maintenance oil. This oil is available in a Ballistol spray can, Ballistol pen, or simply a small 50 ml bottle.

Sharpening pruning shears

You can easily sharpen a part of the shears yourself. But before you start sharpening you need to always properly clean the shears. After cleaning it you can start sharpening. Always use the right sharpening tool when doing so. Pruning shears won’t get any sharper if you use a regular file. After all, the knife is a lot harder than the file. Blunt shears can be sharpened with a sharpening stone or diamond file. The finer the stone or file, the sharper your shears. Another advantage of good sharpening stones or a file: you can also use them to sharpen your kitchen knives!