Best Manual Log Splitters

If you need the convenience of a machine to help you plough through those logs like a beast, but don’t have the budget or need for a fancy, bulky gas powered electric splitter, then a manual log splitter is for you.

While involving slightly more effort than the powered log splitters on the markets, manual splitters are typically lighter, easier to manoeuvre, and not bound to the need to have a power source at hand. If you are a weekend warrior, only handle smaller loads, or simply don’t use your splitter often, a manual log splitter can be a great choice for you.

Top 5 best manual log splitters.

One of the most attractive things about manual log splitters is their accompanying price tag. There’s no real need to shop budget with these beasties, as even the best come in at comfortably low price tag that won’t break the bank.

They also are far safer than using an axe to split wood, as well as taking the time out of this back-breaking task. That is, of course, provided that you take the time to find one with a robust and solid construction that will not warp, bend or split. Log splitters make downsizing your wood- weather for craft projects or the fireplace- a walk in the park, by using a wedge and brute force to drive through the log load.

Some manual splitters will allow you to adjust the size of the wedge used, while others will not. While manual log splitters can be slow next to powered ones, they can also be more convenient, and at budget friendly pricing are a great way to harness convenience. Most use a 2 stroke pump design to quickly build up to maximum splitting pressure, and take a load off of your back without taking a load out of your wallet too.

They’re great for the occasional user, someone simply looking to boost their own cutting abilities, or those who need budget portability over speed and road-towability.

What do I need in my manual splitter?

While manual log splitters are much easier to operate and understand then the average powered log splitter, there are a few features to watch out for and consider. Of course, the standard size of the load bed is one thing- there is no point in buying a model whose average and maximum log sizes don’t match well with the wood you need to handle.

You also should consider if you would want a foot or hand powered model when considering a manual splitter. Feet powered modes can leave hands free and sometimes provide more brute power, but hand powered models allow for convenience and dexterity. You also need to consider the tonnage required from the model- which will be closely tied to whether or not you use green/wet woods and hardwoods.

So, which manual log splitter should I buy?

Below, we look at our top five picks for manual log splitters.

TMS 10 Ton Horizontal splitter

TMS 10 Ton Horizontal splitter

While this high-scoring amazon favourite can only take horizontal logs and not vertical, it’s easy two-lever operation and attractive pricetag make it a firm favourite.

With 2 speed settings and 10 tons of splitting power, it brings a powerful design to the table while still remaining light and manoeuvrable- with two wheels helping you get it where you need it. It’s simple to use- although with manual log splitters elbow grease is still required- and a budget friendly best pick that can take up to 16” logs.

Wel-built 10 ton manual log splitter

Wel-built 10 ton manual log splitter

One of the best manual log splitters available on the market today, this Amazon favourite scores highly with customers from construction through use and right through to great customer service. Offering capability to handle 18” logs, it’s simple to use and a powerful choice offering a standard 2 handle design.

An extra-long cradle prevents your wood from having accidents, and a 2 speed pump offers length and durable service while taking some of the back-breaking labour out of your wood chopping.

Sealey LS450H Horizontal log splitter

Sealey LS450H Horizontal log splitter

This foot-operated manual splitter offers durable construction alongside ease of use. Its another amazon crowd favourite, offering a wide variety of builds and capabilities the ability to easily split and handle logs.

While no manual splitter s particularly good at knotty and green wood, the Sealey LS450H will take a load off your back and make the laborious task of dealing with your fireplace wood a distant memory. Users report needing only a minimum of leg pressure for effective splitting.

Bentley 10 Ton hand-operated log splitter.

Bentley 10 Ton hand-operated log splitter.

Able to handle logs up to 18”, this powerful hand-operated log splitter never the less ranks as a customer favourite due to ease of use. Users complement a robust and simple design, and it stands up to wear and tear well. While, like many manual log splitters, it has its imperfections when it comes to ‘difficult’ wood- particularly green and knotty- it can still have a significant impact on the speed and ease by which your log splitting tasks get done.

YTL international 8 Ton heavy duty log splitter

Ytl International YTL23102 8-Ton Heavy-Duty Manually Operated Log Splitter

While this pick offers slightly less tonnage of splitting power, it more than makes up for it with a robust design and the capability to be used indoors or out. It’s foot-operated and offers the option to adjust the wedge. It is decently portable, with firm steel wheels for manoeuvrability, and will take logs of up to 23”

All of these top-picks for best manual log splitters offer robust and sturdy designs, with easy portability and effective splitting capacity that significantly reduces the load on your body. While each one offers slightly different pros and cons, they represent a great selection of the best manual log splitters out there.

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