7 Best Tiller for Hard Soil in 2023

Breaking new ground or tilling hard soil in your garden requires the right tools to make your work easier and perfect. Best Tiller for Hard Soil That’s where a powered tiller comes in. 

Though there’re plenty of powered tillers, not all of them will work on hard soils. So, which the best tiller for hard soil.

If you’re going to tackle hard soil in your garden, you might want to look at this guide for the best tillers. 

Related: Best Cordless Tiller

Tillers: 7 Best Tiller for Hard Soil in 2023

1. Champion Rear Tine Rototiller for Home Use

You can’t talk about rototilling machines without mentioning champion 19-inch tiller. It’s a versatile rear tine tiller capable of tackling hard soils.

Champion Rear Tine Rototiller for Home Use Check Price on Amazon

So, if you’re looking forward to break a new ground, you won’t go wrong with this equipment.

It’s powered by a 212 cc engine which powers the wheels and the tines. Tines get their rotating power through a gear-driven transmission from the engine. The engine has an option for both forward and reverse rotation to give you flexibility when tilling.

The 13.8-inch tines are made from hardened steel which makes them ideal for hard soils. Plus the counter-rotation configuration helps in achieving effective tilling. Also, the self-propelled 13-inch tyres are agricultural grade featuring quality treads to enhance good manoeuvrability and traction.

This tiller achieves an 8-inch depth and 19-inch width. Tilling depth can be adjusted by the depth gauge. The tines have a heavy duty shield to protect you from flying stones or debris when tilling.

What’s more, this is a robust tiller with proven efficiency and durability. It is certified by EPA and CARB. Plus it comes with a two year warranty.


  • Versatile and durable
  • Ideal for hard soils
  • Deep and adjustable tilling depth
  • Handle can be folded for convenience during storage


  • Costly

2. Southland SRTT212 Rotary Tiller

When dealing with hard soils such as during ground breaking you require a powerful tiller to make tilling more efficient. That’s where a rotary tiller like Southland SRTT212 comes in place.

Southland SRTT212 Rotary Tiller Check Price on Amazon

The unbroken lumps of soils and rocks might be very difficult to break and turn with conventional tillers.

It is powered by a 212 cc engine which gives it sufficient strength to tackle hard soils. With its counter-rotating steel tines, southland SRTT212 attains up to 11-inch tilling depth and 18-inch tilling width. This makes it possible to remove weeds and upturn fresh soil.

The 13-inch tyres are designed with heavy-duty materials to allow their use on tough terrains. They offer stability and good maneuverability on uneven terrain.

Handles have an ergonomic design allowing for easy grip. You can fold the handles for convenient storage or load into a track.


  • Suitable for hard soils
  • Can fold handles for convenient storage
  • Tyres offer good stability
  • Digs wide and deep
  • Economical handgrips


  • 4 stroke engine needs to warm before beginning work.

3. Greenworks 27072 Corded Tiller

Whether you want to weed, dig or till your garden, greenworks corded tiller will be an ideal solution for you. It comes with a powerful and robust 8 Amp motor which rotates the 4, 8 inch tines. 

Greenworks 27072 Corded Tiller Check Price on Amazon

Thus, you can dig hard grounds and remove stubborn weeds with ease. With the rotating tines you can achieve up to 5 inch tilling depth and 8.25 to 10 inch tilling width. Tilling depth can also be adjusted in case you are digging shallow soils.

Greenworks gives you an environmentally-friendly way for tilling your garden since no fuel or gas is required. It has an easy to start mechanism which allows you to quickly get your machine to work unlike 4-cycle engines which need warming up.

With the adjustable handle, it can be operated by individuals of any height. You can also fold the handle to enable convenient storage or transportation.


  • Powerful motor is ideal for hard soils
  • Adjustable tilling depth
  • Adjustable tilling width
  • Quick start mechanism
  • Environmentally-friendly


  • Electric cord may cause inconvenience.

Related: Best Rotary Tiller for Tractor

4. Mantis 7940 Garden Tiller

This is a versatile gas tiller for hard and tough soils. With its 4-cycle Honda engine you don’t need to hire a giant tiller to break your hard ground. It has a compact and lightweight design which makes it easy to handle and manoeuvre through small spaces. 

Mantis 7940 Garden Tiller Check Price on Amazon

The curvy tines penetrate through hard soils to a depth of 10 inches chewing through any materials on the way. With the 9 inch width it is possible to till through delicate plants. These tines can be adjusted to dig 2 to 3 inches deep.

Mantis 7940 is one of the lightest tillers yet very powerful. Its compact design and foldable handles allow easy transportation and storage.

What’s more, Mantis 7940 is easy to start and you don’t have to mix water with oil. Plus the lifetime warranty has your equipment covered in case of any fault or damage.


  • Lightweight and powerful tiller
  • Curvy tines enable efficient tilling
  • Adjustable tilling depth
  • Compact design
  • Powerful engine for tackling hard soils


  • Cost of gas is relatively high

5. Mantis 7250 Electric Tiller/Cultivator

If you have some tough tilling or new ground to break, you need a powerful tiller like the mantis 7250. It’s a powerful electric tiller featuring a 540 W motor capable of ploughing through hard soils.

Mantis 7250 Electric Tiller/Cultivator Check Price on Amazon

At only 21 pounds, this tiller gives you less hustle when manoeuvring or during storage. With its reversible tines you can till up to 10 inches deep and adjust the tines to 2-3 inches to cultivate the top soil.

The nine inch tilling width makes it possible to manoeuvre through tight spaces. They rotate at 240 rpm making it possible to get through hard and compact soils.

It has an easy push button which allows to start your machine with ease. The button is placed at the handle so that you don’t have to bend or release the machine when starting.

Being an electric garden tiller mantis 7250 operates quietly and no hazardous emissions are released to the environment.


  • Easy start button
  • Powerful transmission for hard soils
  • Easy to move through small spaces
  • No hazardous emissions
  • Lightweight


  • Corded

6. SunJoe TJ604E

Hard soils might prove too hard for typical electric tillers, but not for SunJoe TJ604E. No matter your type garden, this tiller will get through with deep and wide digging. 

SunJoe TJ604E Check Price on Amazon

It’s powered by a 13.5 amp motor to deliver a powerful torque for tackling challenging soil conditions. Whether your garden has rocky, compact or clay soil, SunJoe TJ604E will make tilling easier and more effective.

The six steel tines rotate at 370 rmp penetrating 8 inches deep and 16 inches wide. This helps in slicing the soil to allow good aeration and drainage. These tines are also angled to make tilling and turning of the soil more efficient.

It comes with 2 wheels which can be adjusted to 3 height positions to allow easy maneuverability on tilled soil. With its fold-able handles it easy to store or load in your track when transporting.

Since it’s electrically powered you won’t have to deal with smoke or noise from the engine when tilling your garden. It requires little maintenance and comes with a 2 year warranty.


  • Designed for hard and tough soils
  • Adjustable wheels
  • Angled tines
  • Foldable handle for easy storage and transportation
  • Minimal maintenance


  • Cord might be bothersome

7. CRAFTSMAN 208cc Gas Powered Tiller

Craftsman 208cc will be a perfect garden tiller for compact and hard soils such as when breaking new ground. It’s equipped with a 208 cc engine which turns the 10 inch tines to give your soil deep and vigorous turning. 

CRAFTSMAN 208cc Gas Powered Tiller Check Price on Amazon

The counter-rotating tines are made of steel making them ideal for ground breaking. With this tiller you will dig up to 6-inch deep and 16-inch wide. The heavy duty shield covering the tines contains flying stones and debris to keep you safe.

With its 13″ x 5″ tyres, your equipment won’t get stuck on tilled soil. These are agricultural -grade tyres featuring large treads for stability and good traction on loose soil. They are also designed to minimize bounce and therefore enhance good maneuverability.

What’s more, Craftsman 280 cc is a heavy tiller capable of tackling hard and compact soils. Its robust construction makes it durable and reliable over time.


  • Efficient tiller for hard and compact soil
  • Robust and durable tiller
  • Agricultural-grade tyres
  • Rear shield protects you from debris


  • Heavy

How to Choose the Best Tiller for Hard Soil

The choice of a garden tiller will generally determine how effectively and easily you do the work. Your typical tiller should penetrate deep and effectively turn the soil to promote good drainage and aeration.

1. Size of the Tiller

Usually garden tillers come in different sizes and robustness depending on the size of projects they’re meant for. That means the size of tiller will be determined by the size of your garden or the area you want to till.

If you have a small garden, you require a mini tiller which is lightweight and less robust. Such a tiller will cost you less and consume less fuel. However, you require a bigger equipment for a larger garden (greater than 4800 square feet).

2. Soil Condition

You want a tiller for hard soil. However, the soil might also be characterised by other factors such as rocks or compactness. So, it’s paramount to assess the exact condition of the soil to help you choose the most effective tiller.

New ground might present a big challenge for many tillers since the soil tends to be compact and sometimes full of tangling roots. In this case, only a robust tiller will penetrate, slice the roots and turn the soil effectively. Small tillers tend to get tangled with roots.

3. Engine

Usually, there’re electrical, battery and gas-powered garden tillers. The choice of engine will entirely depend on personal preferences and where you are going to use the tiller.

For gardens far from the source of electricity, it would be impractical to opt for a corded electrical tiller. Since battery-powered tillers are not in common use, a gas-powered tiller is the best option for such a garden.

If you’re strictly environmentally conscious, you may want to go for the electrical tiller. Notably, gas-powered tillers tend to be more robust and durable and are good for tackling hard soil.

4. Tines/Blades

Tines come in different shapes and designs. The three most common type of tine include the bolo tines, chisel tines and the slasher tines.

Bolo tines are preferred for their ability to dig deep into the soil. These come in handy when you want to plant your crops in the right depth. Check Front Tine vs. Rear Tine Tillers.

Chisel tines are ideal for tackling hard and rocky soils especially when breaking new ground. Slasher tines help in cutting through tangling roots and weeds.

Also the manner in which the tines rotate determines the effectiveness of the tilling. Normally, tines can either rotate forward or counter-rotate. The best choice for hard soil and breaking new ground are those with counter-rotating motion.

5. Wheels

Not all tillers are designed with wheels. Tillers that come with wheels are easier to manoeuvre making the work less tiresome. They also help in maintaining stability on loose and rugged soil.

Therefore, if wheels are part of your consideration, go for those with the best characteristics. Agricultural-grade wheels are robust, give stability and are very durable.

6. Maintenance

You want an equipment that will be easy to maintain. Usually, it’s much easier to maintain electric tillers compared to gas tillers. For, battery powered electric tillers you’ll have to deal with battery replacement from time to time.

Although gas-powered tillers don’t use batteries or cords, they require regular maintenance. But it won’t be an issue if you have some basic mechanical know how.


While there’re many tillers for hard soil to choose from, getting the most effective for your garden can be challenging. But looking at these reviews and buying guide it is possible to know what to expect in your equipment.

So, take your time and choose the best tiller to make your garden chores more effective and less tiresome.

Recent Posts