The Best Crabgrass Killer

Scotts Halts Crabgrass & Grassy Weed Preventer

Our Top Pick for 2016: Scotts Halts Crabgrass & Grassy Weed Preventer
Read our full review.

See it on Amazon for $16.42*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.
Too expensive? See our budget pick.

Crabgrass has been a formidable foe against homeowners for as long as front lawns have existed, but luckily, we’ve become well-versed in countermeasures against it. Over 550 million pounds of herbicide are used to fight against weeds annually, but not every crabgrass killer is made equally. Selective herbicides will kill nothing more than the intended target, while other brands might introduce slightly more risks as an expense of their weed-fighting power. The following crabgrass killers are considered to be some of the most reliable brands for effectively dealing with invasive crabgrass without compromising your lawn in the process.

Table of contents

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Restores Nutrients To The Soil
Fall Application Prevents Winter Weeds
Kills Lawn Weeds Plus Crabgrass Without Harming The Lawn
Speeds Root Growth To Improve Nutrient Absorption
Apply In Spring To Prevent Crabgrass All Season Long
Rainproof In 1 Hour
Prevents Crabgrass All Season
Weather After Application Won’t Affect Performance
Lawn Can Be Mowed One To Two Days After Spraying
Helps Lawns Retain Water To Protect Against Drought
Prevents Crabgrass, Foxtail, Spurge, Barnyard Grass, Fall Panicum, Goose Grass And Oxalis
Kills Over 200 Of The Most Common Broadleaf Weeds
Coverage: 5,000 Sq. Ft
Coverage: 5,000 Sq. Ft
Controls Other Grassy Weeds

*Price at time of publishing and may not reflect current pricing.

#1 Gold pick (Winner): Scotts Halts Crabgrass & Grassy Weed Preventer

Scotts Halts Crabgrass & Grassy Weed Preventer Gold Pick

View it on Amazon for $16.42*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-gold-winnerScotts Halts Crabgrass & Grass Weed Preventer is made to cover up to 5,000 square feet of any crabgrass or weed infestation besieging your lawn. Owners are advised to apply the crabgrass killer in the spring in order to facilitate crabgrass prevention that last all through the entire season.

If applied early enough in the beginning of the year, then seasonal weeds such as foxtail, barnyard grass, goose grass, oxalis and spurge may be prevented in addition to the crabgrass infestation. If the owner applies the crabgrass killer in the fall, then they can potentially protect their property against the chance of weeds such as chickweed, henbit, and poa annua.

As an extra measure for reliability, the crabgrass killer has been designed for resistance against being diminished by the elements. When using Scott Halts, users won’t have to worry about the rain, snow, or freezing water putting a damper on the benefits before the weeds can be fully removed.

One customer testified that they have been using the herbicide for the past decade and have yet to run into any issues with its effectiveness. While the customer praised the crabgrass killer for working as intended, their idea of the right time to apply the product was slightly different than that which had been suggested by other owners.

While some owners had suggested to use the crabgrass remover when the snow comes down, this owner reported that their best experience with the product was when they chose to use it in the warmer months of the year.

Once getting acclimated to the manner in which the crabgrass killer works, the owner reported that they made a habit of laying down the crabgrass killer after a full week has passed with temperatures reaching the mid-sixties.

The owner suggested that owners would be best-equipped to tackle their crabgrass issue if taking a “double-whammy” approach to the weeds, in which the first wave is applied preemptively and the second wave is applied as soon as the crabgrass is beginning to germinate.

Another owner testified that they had initially been struggling with a crabgrass problem that had been persisting for about 3 years straight. After doing extensive research into pre-emergent herbicides that could potentially help them out, they found out about Scotts Halts and decided to give it a try; the results were highly satisfying. The owner found that they were able to get the best possible result from the crabgrass killer by laying it down at the end of February, due to the weather in their East Texas locale being relatively unpredictable.

To cover all of their bases, the owner decided to give the lawn a light application of the herbicide in the first week of the April that followed their first application in February. Even with the fluctuating East Texan weather, the user found that the crabgrass remover did exactly what it was billed for without causing any damage to their lawn.

Potential owners would be wise to anticipate some possible variance in the best time of year to apply their crabgrass killer, depending on the particular climate of their home and the nature of the grass on their lawn. In any case, it would be wise to preemptively strike the crabgrass at the first sign of infestation before it becomes a highly visible issue

The herbicide can be safely applied to fescue mix grass; however, prospective customers are strongly advised to refrain from using the crabgrass killer on their dichondra or crabgrass lawns. In order to assure that the crabgrass killer works exactly as intended, it would be prudent to consider applying it before the crabgrass itself even begins to grow.

#2 Silver pick (Runner-up): GreenView Crabgrass Control Plus Lawn Food

GreenView Crabgrass Control Plus Lawn Food

View it on Amazon for $29.32*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-silver-winnerGreenView Crabgrass Control Plus Lawn Food is crabgrass killer that can double as a source of nourishment for the lawn that is applied to. The full contents of a single bag can be applied to 5000 square feet in total. As far as seasonal application is concerned, it can be effectively applied during any time of the year for the same degree of effectiveness.

While killing the targeted weeds, the grass that the herbicide is used on is provided with nutrients that can ideally help the roots of the grass grow in order to facilitate even better absorption. While the absorption rate of the roots is being improved, the amount of water that the lawn can retain is increased in order to keep it better-protected against any risks of drought.

GreenView is has special composition that gives it both an instant-release and delayed-released feature for its nitrogen content. If the crabgrass killer is laid down in the beginning of Spring, the pesticide killer’s time-release and instant-release features can activate in tandem to tackle immediately-present crabgrass and mitigate the chance of any possible future development of other seasonal weeds. Once the crabgrass killer’s nitrogen has been released, users can expect the feeding to continue undeterred for up to 8 weeks.

While the product is capable of working at any time during the year, some users have testified that the best time to apply this herbicide would be when the temperature exceeds 50 degrees. Many users have reported getting positive results when using the crabgrass remover at the very beginning of Spring, particularly if they happen to live in the Northeastern United States.

In another testimony, a user reported that they had been unsuccessfully using other brands of crabgrass killers for years on end. As soon as the user began to use GreenView on a consistent basis, they were able to completely put a halt to the overwhelming emergence of crabgrass that normally overtook their lawns at the beginning of Spring every year.

Another owner of the product testified that while the crabgrass killer was indeed effective, it took just a little bit of time before the full effects could fully manifest. Their lawn was completely overrun with crabgrass at the very beginning of the application, and it took multiple applications over the course of a few weeks to slow down the growth enough to the point where they could completely do away with the all of the weeds.

Because GreenView provides the grass with what it needs to thrive, users have reported that their lawns are able to maintain a consistently healthy shade of green and an even rate of turf growth. User have also testified that the crabgrass killer is pet-friendly, so if the owner has any dogs that like to play in yard, they shouldn’t be bothered by any of the active product on the ground.

As this is a pre-emergent crabgrass killer, users should be advised that it won’t be able to provide quite as much value if the crabgrass has already emerged when its laid down. In addition to being as proactive as possible with the use of the product, users should also be prepared to wait just a little while before the crabgrass killer runs its full course. The active crabgrass preventer in the product is Dithiopyr.

#3 Bronze pick (3rd place): Bayer Advanced All-in-One Lawn Weed and Crabgrass Killer

Bayer Advanced All-in-One Lawn Weed and Crabgrass Killer

View it on Amazon for $9.20*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-bronze-awardBayer Advanced All-in-One Lawn Weed and Grass Killer is another herbicide that’s been designed to take out weeds while mitigating the risk of doing damage to the user’s lawn in the process.

Users should be advised that this crabgrass killer is not meant to be used on carpet grass, Bahia grass, centipede grass, St. Augustine grass, or floratam grass. Due to the chemical makeup of the herbicide, crabgrass is not the only weed that the Bayer is capable combating. Due to the composition of this herbicide, it is capable of killing over 200 of the most frequently-occurring broadleaf weeds.

The crabgrass killer has been designed with a special implement that makes it rainproof after one hour of application. Because the rain resistance activates after it’s been settled for an hour, users should make a point to preemptively check the weather and schedule their application of the product accordingly.

For every gallon of water, there are 3.2 ounces of the crabgrass killer included. Users can expect to treat about 500 square feet of their lawn for every gallon of water that that they use to spread the product out across their lawn.

After spraying down the lawn with the crabgrass remover, users will be capable of mowing their lawns without disturbing the product 24 to 48 hours later. One owner advises potential users that the best time to use the crabgrass killer would when the temperature is beneath 90 degrees, and if the owner has a Bermuda grass lawn, the product shouldn’t be laid down if the temperature is above 85 degrees.

One owner testified that the best possible results from the product can only be gained if the owner makes sure to accurately follow the exact instructions for mixing it with water, without taking too many liberties. The owner reported that they’re an official in the lawn industry, and in their experience, those who have the most trouble with crabgrass killers tend to be those who have diluted it by laying it down before the dew on the ground as fully dried. As a side note, the owner noted that crabgrass will tend to shift in pigment from a darker green to a lighter green when the product is successfully doing its job of killing it.

Another owner testified that they had initially been using a pre-mixed single-gallon variation of the product, but they were able to get even more value by mixing 3.2 ounces of the product in a sprayer bottle with a gallon of their own water; with just that minor amount of spray, the user reported that they were able to keep their lawn protected from crabgrass for weeks without any problems whatsoever.

Out of all of the products that the owner had tried in the past to kill their stubborn crabgrass, Bayer was the only brand they had personally tried which was able to take the crabgrass down without causing damage to their lawn in the process.

Overall, the general reception to Bayer is that it’s a crabgrass killer that requires just a little bit of pragmatism and patience, but is still quite effective when used in the correct manner. Overnight results can’t be expected with a pre-emergent crabgrass killer, but so long as the owner is willing to give it chance, they can enjoy an affordable product that pays for itself in the money they’ll save on other weed killers that only cause expensive damage to their lawns.

#4 Budget pick (Best cheap): Ortho Weed B Gon MAX Weed Killer for Lawns Plus Crabgrass Control

Ortho Weed B Gon MAX Weed Killer for Lawns Plus Crabgrass Control

View it on Amazon for $9.47*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-cheap-budget-pickBesides killing crabgrass, Ortho Weed B Gon MAX Weed Killer for Lawns Plus Crabgrass Control is made for killing over 200 other variations of different lawn weeds as well. This crabgrass killer in particular is designed to have instant release activation, and if it works as intended, it should be able to eradicate the weeds down to the roots. The product should be capable of taking out the crabgrass and other types of weeds without doing any harm to the owner’s lawn in the process.

The product is meant to be applied to the lawn with the use of the Ortho Dial ‘N Spray Hose-End sprayer, or any other compatible tank sprayer that the owner can find. Over 5,000 square feet of the lawn can be covered with the product.

The crabgrass killer is rainproof in a single hour and can usually be expected to take results within just 24 hours following the first application; on occasion, some owners have reported that the destruction of the crabgrass could be delayed by as much a two to three weeks before being complete. In order to increase the chances of gaining optimal benefits from the crabgrass killer, owners might want to be prepared to administer a second application.

Users are advised that it’s possible for there to be some discoloration to occur in Bermuda grass that the product is used on. The manufacturer also advises users to refrain from using the crabgrass killer on St. Augustine grass, centipede grass or Bahia grass lawns.


Pre-purchase considerations

Duration of effect

A key deciding factor in your choice of crabgrass killer should always be the length of time that the herbicide should be expected to last if it has its intended effects. Some crabgrass killers may be expected to last for several months with only a few applications, while others will require more frequent applications. Knowing how much and how often you should apply your crabgrass killer in advance will help you get the most value foe your dollar.

Area of effect

The overall effectiveness of the crabgrass that you choose won’t just be a matter of how long it lasts, but all the radius that it can operate within if you apply all of it. Most crabgrass killer information should specify the maximum number of square feet that the owner could potentially apply it over. Depending on how big or small your lawn is, your choice in the right crabgrass killer might be a balancing act between its strength and the amount of space that the herbicide should be expected to cover overall. Thinking this over critically will help you have the exact amount of crabgrass killer that you need for the job, without running out too early or being left with more than you needed in the first place.

Seasonal timing

In addition to having different lengths of time that the owner should be able to expect the crabgrass killer to work, there may also be different seasons in which certain crabgrass killers are expected to work the best. Be sure to pay close attention to whether or not the effects of the crabgrass killer you choose will be better-suited to either the hotter or colder months of the year.

Weather resistance

Typically, the higher-quality herbicides will be designed with a certain composition to ensure that they can resist the interference of the weather on their removal effects. It would be wise to check and see if the crabgrass killer you’re interested in has been made with the ability to keep working in spite of rain or snow that falls on your lawn after you apply it.

Safety of application

While crabgrass killer can certainly be a very welcome ally in your fight against weeds, certain brands have potential to act harshly against the grass that you don’t want to be killed. Different herbicides will interact differently with certain kinds of lawns, so be sure that you’re familiar with the type of grass on your lawn before you decide to put crabgrass killer on it; this will spare you the nasty surprise of finding out that your entire lawn has been stripped bald alongside the weeds that you set out to eradicate in the first place.

Conclusion (Wrapping it up)

Removing crabgrass is a simple goal, but at the same time, it’s a simple goal that requires an overlap of several critical decisions in order to be achieved in a successful and cost-effective manner. In order to make the best possible choice in crabgrass killer, it’s important to be sure that the amount of time that the crabgrass killer would last, the maximum area of effect, the appropriate season of application, and any additional benefits are all fully accounted for. Choosing the wrong crabgrass killer could result in harming your lawn more than you help it, but choosing the right crabgrass killer can provide results that exceed your expectations.

Discussion and comments

We want to know what you think. Do you own any of the products we discussed? Which did you buy and how did it work out for you?

Do you know of an even better product?

Comment below and help your fellow consumers make the right choice. Over to you!

Resources

  1. Weed Killer Guide, Garden-Counselor-Lawn-Care.com, October 19, 2008
  2. How to Get Rid of Crabgrass, FamilyHandyMan.com, July 15, 2008
  3. Crabgrass, WhyGoodNature.com, January 5, 2016
  4. Origins of Crabgrass, GardenGuides.com, September 20, 2010

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