Adjusting Your Trimmer for a Sharp and Safe Cut

Updated: Feb 25

Have you been wondering why your line-ups haven’t been coming out as sharp as you envisioned? What about trimmers that were so sharp, they left an embarrassing red mark on your client? These instances are evidence that your trimmer blade is improperly adjusted. Getting that perfect alignment between the guide and cutting blade can be a difficult task but, fear not, we’ve got a step-by-step guide on how to get your trimmers hitting right:

1. This first step may sound simple, but this is a necessary question you need to ask yourself: Is the blade even adjustable? I know it must sound silly, but there are actually blades out there that are factory set to...well...barely cut anything. Finding out if you can adjust the gap between the guide and cutting blade is a crucial step in determining whether or not you need to just throw the whole trimmer away. CHECK THE DESCRIPTION of the trimmer or blade before you buy. If you buy a trimmer that can’t be adjusted, you will never be able to achieve that crispy line up you desire. 

2. Once you confirm that the trimmer blade is indeed adjustable, the second step is to determine if you will be adjusting the guide blade (the bigger blade that doesn’t move), or the cutting blade (the blade underneath the guide blade that moves back in forth). Some trimmers have guide blades that you can slide up and down while the cutting blade is mounted and unadjustable. In this case, all you have to do is loosen the screws that hold the blade to the trimmer body, adjust the guide blade so it is just above the cutting blade, and re-tighten the screws. If you have one of these trimmer blades, you can stop here. Make sure that the gap is STRAIGHT. If one side of the cutting blade is up higher than the other, you’ll be slicing people up like a samurai!

3. On other trimmers, you will have to remove the screws from the guide blade so that you can access the cutting blade underneath. Depending on the blade, there may be tiny screws that hold the cutting blade in place so that the current adjustment is maintained while the trimmer is on. If this is the case, loosen the screw(s) until you can move the cutting blade. You DO NOT have to take these screws all the way out. It shouldn’t take more than a half turn. 

4. Once you have loosened the cutting blade, adjust it to the point where the cutting blade is just under the guide blade. 

5. Once the adjustment has been made, and the gap is straight, tighten the cutting blade screw(s). 

6. Place the blade assembly back on to the trimmer body and replace the initial screws. 

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