Gas-powered post drivers are excellent tools that can cut your fence building time in half. They can be used for other projects too, like putting signs up, for example. There are many different types of post drivers available and the cost varies a lot.
You don’t want to waste money on an expensive tool that you don’t need, but you equally don’t want to get stuck with a cheap driver that is just as much hard work as a manual one. This guide will tell you everything you need to know about choosing a gas-powered post driver, with some of my recommendations.
Table of Contents
- What is a Gas-Powered Post Driver?
- What To Consider When Buying a Gas-Powered Post Driver?
- 10 Best Gas-Powered Post Driver
- 1. Titan PGD2875 Homeowner
- 2. Titan Post Drivers PGD3200
- 3. Earth Series 32.7cc Gas Powered T-Post Driver
- 4. Titan Post Drivers PGD2875H
- 5. Rhino GPD40 Fence Pro Honda 4-Stroke 35.8cc Gas Powered Post Driver
- 6. JACKCHEN 52CC Gas Powered T-Post Driver (Value Option)
- 7. 52cc Gas-Powered 2-Stroke T-Post Fence Post Driver
- 8. Titan PGD3200X Heavy Duty Commercial Grade Post Driver
- 9. REDI-DRIVER BOSS Gas Powered Post Driver
- 10. Skidril 4 Stroke Light Impact Post Driver G15d
- Final Thoughts
What is a Gas-Powered Post Driver?
A gas-powered post driver is a tool used for putting fence posts into the ground. When you are building a fence, making sure that the posts are driven far enough into the ground and they are completely solid is key. If they are not, the integrity of the entire fence suffers. There are several ways to put the posts into the ground, including digging out a hole and then setting them with concrete. However, driving the posts in is a much quicker and easier method.
You can use a manual post driver, which consists of a steel cylinder with handles on the side that fits over the post. You lift it up and drop it, driving the post into the ground a few inches at a time. While this is a simple, cheap option, it’s also very labor-intensive. A gas-powered post driver is a much faster alternative.
They are powered by small gas cylinder engines, so they are still portable. All you need to do is place them over the post and switch them in, and the piston will drive the post in for you. Unlike a manual post driver that is bashing the post into the ground, a gas-powered driver uses more precise movements to vibrate it into the ground. This means that it doesn’t need as much brute force, so it can work off a small gas canister, making it more portable.
Using a gas-powered post driver is a lot less work and they’re excellent for driving in large posts that would take a long time with a manual post driver. Although they are more expensive than a manual post driver, they take most of the hard work out of installing fences.
What To Consider When Buying a Gas-Powered Post Driver?
There are many gas-powered post drivers available for different sized posts. The cost ranges quite a lot too, so you need a clear idea of what you’re looking for. These are some of the main things to consider.
The weight of the post driver is very important because it affects how portable and easy to use it is. If it is incredibly heavy and you can’t lift it and operate it without help, you lose some of the efficiency. However, you also need to consider the size of the posts you are using. Generally, bigger fence posts require a larger, heavier post driver to put them in. Smaller post drivers weigh around 30-40lb, while some are as heavy as 50lb. You should only opt for a heavier post driver if you absolutely have to because it makes it much harder to move and operate.
Automatic post drivers usually come in two versions; 35cc and 50cc. You will often see 2 stroke or 4 stroke engines and a horsepower rating too. This information all denotes the power of the post driver.
To decide what you need, start by looking at the type of posts you want to drive. For general home use, a 2 stroke engine that generates 1-2 horsepower will cut your post driving time in half, compared with using a manual driver. If you want to maximize the power, look for a 4 stroke engine. This will drive posts in even faster, and it’s best if you are fencing off a large area or using especially big fence posts. That said, be prepared to pay more and work with a heavier machine.
The speed of the post driver is often a better indication of how efficient it is than the size of the engine. Remember, a gas-powered post driver doesn’t rely solely on brute force so speed is more effective than power. When comparing different gas-powered post drivers, always look at the beats-per-minute.
Anything over 1500 is good, but some go up as far as 2000 or higher. Ideally, you should find a lightweight post driver that gives you good beats-per-minute and still has a relatively small engine. If you are driving in large posts, you’ll need a post driver with 2000 beats-per-minute or more.
Post Drive Size
Finally, you need to check the size of the posts it can drive. Often, post drivers come with adapter sleeves that fit over the barrel so it can be used with different sized posts. Smaller post drivers can handle anything up to 2 inches in diameter, while bigger models will go up to 4 inches or more. Taller fences need thicker posts for added stability, so you will need a bigger post driver.
10 Best Gas-Powered Post Driver
The Titan PGD2875 Homeowner is one of the best gas-powered post drivers for general use. While it might not be adequate for professional use, it’s more than capable of handling light duty work around the home. The 4 stroke engine puts out 1.3 horsepower and drives posts at 1500 to 2000 beats-per-minute. It can drive posts up to 3” in diameter and it has 1” and 2” adapters for smaller posts too.
That range of sizes is suitable for most fences you’re likely to build in your yard. You can easily drive lots of posts in a short space of time, but it does struggle a little on especially hard ground. It’s worth checking the state of the soil before you get started and if you are having trouble, consider wetting the ground. It’s very loud too, so make sure you wear ear protection.
While this isn’t the most powerful post driver out there, it’s robust and it can easily handle standard fence posts. But the best thing is that it’s very lightweight and easy to handle, so anybody can use it. It’s also a more affordable option than some other post drivers.
If you are installing a big fence and you need to drive thicker posts, this Titan Post Drivers PGD3200 is ideal. It is more geared towards commercial work, though it still has the same 4 stroke engine with 1.3 horsepower. It drives posts up to 3.25” at 1850 beats-per-minute. It’s designed for use over long periods and the built-in dampening springs minimize the vibration and make it more comfortable to use. You won’t notice the difference if you are installing a small fence but when you are using it for a long time, it’s worthwhile. It weighs 45lb, so it’s easy to maneuver.
This post driver is quite a bit more expensive than the Titan Homeowner version but it’s better suited to big jobs and if you see yourself using a post driver regularly, it’s worth the extra money.
3. Earth Series 32.7cc Gas Powered T-Post Driver
The Earth Series 32.7cc Gas Powered T-Post Driver is an excellent affordable option, costing less than half what a high-end post driver does. It has a small engine, which makes it nice and lightweight, but it’s still powerful enough to drive fence posts quickly. The 2 stroke engine drives posts at a rate of 1700-2230 beats-per-minute, which just goes to show that a smaller engine doesn’t necessarily mean you have to compromise on performance.
It comes with adjustable sleeves so it can drive a range of different sized posts, and it has some excellent added features like dampening springs too, which is good considering the price. It also has a great see-through fuel construction so you can tell when you are running low on fuel.
The post driver offers excellent value because, even though it has a smaller engine, it still gives you an excellent driving rate and has all of the features that you expect to find on more expensive models.
This Titan Post Driver is similar to the Homeowner model in terms of power and driving capacity. However, it uses a Honda engine, known for reliability and superior performance. It comes with adapters for 1”, 2”, and 3” fence posts and drives at 1500 to 2000 beats-per-minute.
The design is geared towards all-day use with a durable engine, comfortable handles, and dampening springs. It’s also incredibly light at just 28lb, so it is very easy to handle for long periods. Just make sure that you wear ear protection because it does get very loud.
If you need a heavy-duty gas-powered post driver, this Rhino GPD40 is ideal. It weighs slightly more than other similar tools (38lbs) but you get more power as a result. It’s a good option if you are working with bigger posts. The driver is powered by a reliable Honda 4 stroke engine, which has been rigorously tested for quality. It drives posts at a rate of 1720 beats-per-minute, so it makes short work of all standard fence posts.
However, it only drives posts up to 2.5” so make sure to check the size of the posts before you get started. It also comes with sleeves for 1” and 2” posts.
The Honda engine in this model will last for years to come without dropping in performance, and you get great speed and efficiency from it. If you are willing to pay more for a premium option, this is the one to go for.
If you don’t need something quite this powerful but you still want a well-built tool, try the next model down, the GPD30. It has all of the same excellent features and Honda engine, but it’s slightly lighter. It will still be powerful enough to handle most DIY projects and the design makes it nice and easy to handle.
The JACKCHEN 52cc Gas Powered T-Post Driver is the best value option out there. It has everything you need to get started with your project right away, including all of the tools and accessories you need to put fuel in. But just because it’s cheap, that doesn’t mean you’ll compromise on performance as it still has a 52cc gas-powered engine in it.
It doesn’t have dampening springs like you find on more expensive tools, but the rubber handles have a nice ergonomic design that helps you stay comfortable when working for long periods. It also has an adjustable throttle switch so you can change the power depending on the post material and the ground you are driving it into.
You may not want to buy an expensive post driver if you’re just putting up one fence in your yard. In that case, this is the perfect choice because it’s affordable, but still performs well.
7. 52cc Gas-Powered 2-Stroke T-Post Fence Post Driver
This Xtremepower 52cc Gas-Powered Post Driver is a powerful tool that can handle any posts of up to 3”. The 52cc engine gives between 700 and 1350 beats-per-minute, which is not as fast as some of the other drivers on this list, but it is more powerful, so it will easily handle all standard fence projects. Often, more powerful drivers are heavier and clumsier to handle but that isn’t the case here. It’s still nice and lightweight and drives steel posts with ease. It’s less effective on wooden posts, especially in compacted ground, but with a bit of patience it gets the job done. It also comes with a handy carry case for added portability.
When building a tall fence or an especially short one, post drivers can be a bit awkward to use. You can get around that problem with this Titan PGD3200X Heavy Duty Commercial Grade Post Driver, complete with an extension kit. The post driver is fitted to the adjustable extension so you can reach tall posts with ease, without breaking your back holding it over your head. You can drive posts of all sizes from ½” all the way up to 3”, so if you’re looking for a post driver that can easily meet all of your needs, this is the one to go for.
It drives posts in at 1850 beats-per-minute, even when attached to the extension, so you can finish your fence in no time. You may not need the extension if you are working with fence posts that are 6 feet or less. However, anything larger than that and you should consider this driver to make life easier for yourself.
The REDI-DRIVER BOSS Gas Powered Post Driver uses a quality Honda engine to drive posts at a rate of 1820 beats-per-minute. Reliability is one of the biggest selling points of this tool and it has one of the longest warranties of any post driver. You get 3 years warranty on the parts of the driver and 1 year on the engine itself.
This isn’t the cheapest post driver that money can buy but it is very powerful, capable of fixing posts very deep into the ground with ease. It’s lightweight and easy to use too.
For a normal fence project in your yard, you only need a basic post driver that can handle reasonably sized posts. You don’t necessarily need to pay a lot for an industrial post driver with lots of advanced features. The Skidril 4 Stroke Light Impact Post Driver is simple, affordable, and gives excellent performance.
While it won’t be up to the task of fencing off huge areas or driving in ten foot tall posts, it works brilliantly for anything up to 3” as long as you are working on reasonable ground. If it is rocky or especially hard, you may need something a bit more powerful.
Using a manual post driver to put your fence posts in is very demanding work. You can save yourself a lot of hassle by using a gas-powered driver instead. Before buying one, always check that it fits the posts you are using and look at the beats-per-minute.
The size of the engine and the horsepower are not always an accurate indication of performance but higher beats-per-minute means that you’ll drive posts faster. Be sure to check the height of the fence posts too and use a driver with an extension kit for tall fences.
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.