Don't consign leaf rakes to the annals of history just yet!
Before considering the advantages of using good old-fashioned leaf rakes for leaf removal, let's look at the four advantages residing in the vacuum's camp:
- Possible time savings (if you're a slow raker and if you don't feel the need to remove every last leaf).
- Ability to remove leaves from tight spaces.
- Relative ease of use may be attractive to those with disabilities.
- Vacuums can also allow you to shred up the leaves, creating ready-to-use mulch.
Now let's consider the advantages of raking leaves, instead.
- Monetary savings: leaf rakes are cheaper.
- For those reasonably healthy, wielding a leaf rake can serve as an aerobic exercise.
- Since leaf rakes don't have motors, they're not only better for the environment, but also quieter and promise a more serene experience. The sights, sounds and smells of autumn can be better appreciated without having to put up with the drone of a motor.
- You can dethatch the lawn at the same time.
This last is the most important advantage of raking leaves over using vacuums and is discussed in my FAQ, Is There a Right and Wrong Way to Rake Leaves?
Let us know which you prefer to use, a leaf rake or blower.