Highest Quality Weed Killer in 2022

Have you had it with those unwanted plants that make your lawn look neglected? We have the solution! The best weed killer out there can help your yard, garden, or even tennis court look flawless. To find out all about it, be sure to read all sections of our article: methodology, reviews, buyer’s guide, benefits, and FAQ.

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1. Tenacity Turf Herbicide

Knowing that Tenacity is both a pre- and post-emergent, kills on contact via residual control, and can protect all kinds of lawns, it’s no wonder we picked it for our list of top weed killers. Full Review

  • Both pre- and post-emergence
  • Selective herbicide
  • Highly effective
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Knowing that Tenacity is both a pre- and post-emergent, kills on contact via residual control, and can protect all kinds of lawns, it’s no wonder we picked it for our list of top weed killers. Full Review

First results

One week

Weed death

Up to three weeks

Rainproof in

Four hours

Price

$71.99 for eight ounces

2. Spectracide Weed Stop For Lawns Plus Crabgrass Killer Concentrate

Whether you’re looking for a great weed killer for dandelions, clover, or some of the other of the 470-ish plants this product kills, Spectracide and its four active ingredients have you covered. Full Review

  • Can kill 470+ weed types
  • Selective herbicide
  • Very affordable

Whether you’re looking for a great weed killer for dandelions, clover, or some of the other of the 470-ish plants this product kills, Spectracide and its four active ingredients have you covered. Full Review

3. Bayer Celsius WG

With three active ingredients, Bayer Celsius WG can kill 120 different weeds in your warm-season turf. This selective herbicide shows clear results in a few hours. Full Review

  • Three active ingredients
  • Kills 120 kinds of weeds
  • First results quickly visible
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With three active ingredients, Bayer Celsius WG can kill 120 different weeds in your warm-season turf. This selective herbicide shows clear results in a few hours. Full Review

First results

In hours

Weed death

1–4 weeks

Rainproof in

Not specified

Price

$134.95 for 10 ounces

4. Compare n Save Concentrate Grass & Weed Killer

This affordable, non-selective herbicide is an excellent solution for all kinds of renovations. Lawns, flower beds, ornamental trees—they’ll be weed-free in no time. Full Review

  • Affordable
  • Gets rid of almost all annual and perennial weeds
  • Rainfast after a short time
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This affordable, non-selective herbicide is an excellent solution for all kinds of renovations. Lawns, flower beds, ornamental trees—they’ll be weed-free in no time. Full Review

First results

2–4 days

Weed death

1–2 weeks

Rainproof in

Two hours

Price

$9.99 for 32 ounces

5. RM43 Total Vegetation Control Weed Preventer

If you’re looking to treat non-crops areas and want to make the changes permanent, RM43 can do wonders for you. For a low price, you’ll be able to get rid of 150 types of weeds for an entire year. Full Review

  • Effective on poison ivy and poison oak
  • Affordable
  • Effects can last up to a year
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If you’re looking to treat non-crops areas and want to make the changes permanent, RM43 can do wonders for you. For a low price, you’ll be able to get rid of 150 types of weeds for an entire year. Full Review

First results

2–3 days

Weed death

1–2 weeks

Rainproof in

Two hours

Price

$22.86 for 32 ounces

6. Eraser Weed and Grass Killer Concentrate

Eraser kills annual and perennial plants, woody brush, and trees—from the inside out. It’s a great product for brick and gravel walkways, and it’s very affordable. Full Review

  • Affordable
  • Fit for large areas
  • Quickly becomes rainfast
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Eraser kills annual and perennial plants, woody brush, and trees—from the inside out. It’s a great product for brick and gravel walkways, and it’s very affordable. Full Review

First results

Seven days

Weed death

Up to two weeks

Rainproof in

Two hours

Price

$26.39 for 32 ounces

7. Speedzone

Those living in a cool climate and suffering at the hands of broadleaf weeds (especially creeping charlie) will love Speedzone. Its four active ingredients allow for quick first results. Full Review

  • Affordable
  • Great cool weather performance
  • First results visible very quickly
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Those living in a cool climate and suffering at the hands of broadleaf weeds (especially creeping charlie) will love Speedzone. Its four active ingredients allow for quick first results. Full Review

First results

A few hours

Weed death

7–14 days

Rainproof in

Three hours

Price

$35.50 for 20 ounces

Our Methodology

Choosing the right weed killers to put on this list wasn’t easy. Between ensuring the quality of active ingredients, the product’s safety and double-checking it all with customer reviews, finding the deserving products was a worthy task. Eventually, we created a list of highest quality weed killers based on the following criteria:

  • Ingredients. The variety and potency of active ingredients play a huge role in the effectiveness of a weed killer (herbicide). For this article, we only went with weed killers, which either have strong ingredients, a large percentage of active ones, or a wide variety of them.
  • How it works. We made sure to include weed killers with various means of uptake: pre-emergence and post-emergence ones, contact and residual herbicides… You can also take your pick between selective and non-selective ones.
    • Safety. Unlike other reviews, which mostly look at how effective a herbicide is, we paid special attention to the safety of each of our picks. Only those which didn’t show toxicity issues made it on our list.
    • Speed. To find something for everyone, our article features both less permanent weed killers, which usually start showing results right away, and those that take a while to start working but have long-lasting effects.
  • Ease of application. When it comes to finding the greatest weed killer on the market, one crucial aspect is the ease of application. Needless to say, our picks have it. As long as you follow the instructions closely, you’ll achieve the results you want.
  • Price. As with anything else you’re planning to buy, price matters. The weed killers we went with have a wide price range, so there’s something for everyone’s pocket.
  • Customer reviews. Finally, to ensure we’ve made the right choices, we’ve checked to see what users had to say.

Top-Rated Weed Killers

Tenacity Turf Herbicide
Tenacity Turf Herbicide
Tenacity Turf Herbicide

Best for Both Pre-and Post-emergence

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  • Highly effective
  • Both pre- and post-emergence
  • Selective herbicide
  • On the expensive side
  • First results take a week

Overview

This selective weed killer is very potent and versatile. Not only can it be used for pre-emergent and post-emergent weed killing alike, but it also destroys weeds both on contact and via residual control. If you have Kentucky bluegrass, buffalograss, or even St. Augustine grass grown for sod, you can use Tenacity to clean it up.

Ingredients

This weed killer can also help you with the likes of crabgrass, barnyard grass, chickweed, clover, carpetweed, and much more. With 40% of Mesotrione, it can easily kill off all kinds of weeds. The other ingredients (60%) are not specified.

Ease of Use

As a pre-emergent, the best versatile weed killer spray ensures the weeds absorb it from the soil. If used as a post-emergent, it requires a non-ionic surfactant. Its site of action, in that case, is leaves and stems, as well as soil absorption.

One thing that can affect your efforts negatively is the lack of rain. So if there’s no rain within ten days of application, the weed killer will need irrigation systems. While you may not see the results within the first week, rest assured that by the end of week three, you’ll likely be completely free of weeds. That being said, the right weed killer that won’t kill grass still needs to be reapplied every 2–3 weeks. Finally, once you’re rid of those unwanted plants, wait for three months before reseeding the area.

Price

And though customers do say you need to have patience, they also praise the final results this herbicide can accomplish. The price range for 8 ounces is from $60 to $72 and though it may sound like a lot, rest assured that such a versatile weed killer is well worth it.

Spectracide Weed Stop For Lawns Plus Crabgrass Killer Concentrate
Spectracide Weed Stop For Lawns Plus Crabgrass Killer Concentrate
Spectracide Weed Stop For Lawns Plus Crabgrass Killer Concentrate

Best Variety of Weeds Affected

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  • Very affordable
  • Can kill 470+ weed types
  • Selective herbicide
  • Requires a specific temperature range
  • Only two broadcast applications allowed per year

Overview

If your yard has all sorts of weeds that need killing, Spectracide’s amazing formula is exactly what you need. It can kill 470+ weeds, among which are dandelion, chickweed, clover, crabgrass, and yellow nutsedge. All homeowners who need a selective herbicide for Kentucky bluegrass, Bermuda grass, buffalograss, or zoysiagrass may start seeing results in as little as five hours.

Ingredients

It’s no wonder the best herbicide for a wide variety of weeds does such a splendid job when you consider that it has four active ingredients:

  • 2,4-D, dimethylamine salt (3.74%)
  • Quinclorac (1.79%)
  • Dicamba, dimethylamine salt (0.43%)
  • Sulfentrazone (0.22%)

Ease of Use

To get the best results, apply Spectracide roughly six weeks after the young plant starts emerging. However, be sure to use the herbicide in temperatures between 45°F and 90°F. In case of dry conditions, you’ll also need to set up irrigation systems 24 hours before and after the application.

Though this yard weed killer could show results within five days, that depends on the temperature, application rate, and type of weed you’re targeting. And while complete death of weeds can be expected two weeks after application, you can reseed your lawn as soon as four weeks later.

Price

While some users mention that it needs heavy application and some patience, they all agree that Spectracide is very effective at getting rid of stubborn weeds. And at $7.99 for 32 ounces, it’s quite affordable as well.

Bayer Celsius WG
Bayer Celsius WG
Bayer Celsius WG

Best for St. Augustine Grass

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  • First results quickly visible
  • Three active ingredients
  • Kills 120 kinds of weeds
  • Can take up to four weeks to kill weeds
  • On the expensive side

Overview

Thanks to a wide variety of active ingredients, Bayer Celsius WG is incredibly effective. You can wave a whole lot of annual plants and perennials goodbye—120 different kinds, to be precise. Some of the broadleaf weeds and grasses affected include dove weed, large crabgrass, Virginia buttonweed, and dollarweed. Meanwhile, this selective herbicide will protect your warm-season turf, be it St. Augustine grass, centipedegrass, zoysiagrass, or Bermuda grass.

Ingredients

This foliar-applied herbicide contains enough versatile ingredients to be an excellent weed killer for St. Augustine grass:

  • Dicamba (57.4%)
  • Iodosulfuron-methyl-sodium (1.9%)
  • Thiencarbazone-methyl (8.7%).

Ease of Use

Be sure to apply Bayer Celsius WG during growing season, in temperatures higher than 60° F. One disclaimer: don’t use this weed killer on cool-season turfs, nor bahiagrass. And while total weed death may take anywhere between one and four weeks, you’ll likely start noticing the first results in mere hours. Once that’s done, wait for 14 days before reseeding.

Price

Customers who don’t mind paying a bit more for the strongest weed killer say it’s well worth the price. For $107.65, you’ll get 10 ounces and get rid of the weeds destroying your St. Augustine grass.

Compare n Save Concentrate Grass & Weed Killer
Compare n Save Concentrate Grass & Weed Killer
Compare n Save Concentrate Grass & Weed Killer

Best for Lawn Renovation or Restoration

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  • Rainfast after a short time
  • Affordable
  • Gets rid of almost all annual and perennial weeds
  • Affects fruits and nuts for 21 days after application
  • Application depends on air and rain

Overview

Since Compare n Save is a non-selective herbicide, it can kill virtually any plant, helping you keep large areas clean. It’s primarily intended for use around ornamental trees, fruit and nut trees, and flower beds. If you’re looking to renovate your lawn, prepare a garden plot, or do a bit of landscaping, this weed killer can help.

Ingredients

Glyphosate makes up 41% of this product and serves to prevent plant growth, thus killing it. And while many see it as the best commercial weed killer, it might be the most effective when dealing with Bermuda grass.

Ease of Use

Strong as this product is, it still may require reapplication when it comes to this specific plant. The application itself only has two rules: apply when there’s no wind and when rainfall isn’t expected in the next 24 hours.

It may take between two and four days to start seeing results, but the process is pretty quick from then on. In just a week or two, you can expect the total eradication of weeds. But if you’ve applied this good weed killer around fruits or nuts, wait for 21 days before eating them.

Price

Not only is Compare n Save effective, but it’s also on the affordable side. Customers love that they get 32 ounces of this great solution for only $20.

RM43 Total Vegetation Control Weed Preventer
RM43 Total Vegetation Control Weed Preventer
RM43 Total Vegetation Control Weed Preventer

Best Total Vegetation Killer

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  • Effects can last up to a year
  • Effective on poison ivy and poison oak
  • Affordable
  • Results take a couple of days to show
  • For non-crops areas only

Overview

RM43 is likely the best total vegetation killer for over 150 weeds, vines, and brush, including poison ivy and poison oak. If you’re looking for a solution to keep you weed-free for a whole year, you’ll hardly find a better one. But while it kills and prevents stubborn weeds on roadsides, walkways, and even fence lines, those practicing organic farming and regular farming alike won’t be big fans, as RM43 could endanger crop safety. For that reason, you should use it exclusively in non-crop areas. If you’re looking to use it around your farm, be sure to stick only around uncultivated areas, such as walkways.

Ingredients

To rid you of different weeds and vines, the best weed and brush killer combines two herbicides and a surfactant. Active ingredients include:

  • Glyphosate, isopropylamine salt (43.68%)
  • Imazapyr, isopropylamine salt (0.78%.)

Ease of Use

The great thing about this herbicide is that you can apply it both to bare ground and weed-infested areas. But since this weed killer is not selective, using it when there’s no wind is crucial. Otherwise, it may end up reaching plants you don’t want to kill. Some other advice we can give you is:

  • In parking areas, tennis courts, and asphalt driveways, apply RM43 before placing the surface materials.
  • For woody brush and vines, apply this top-rated weed killer during late summer and fall for best results.
  • If you live in an area experiencing heavy rains, reapply again in six to eight months.

Expect to see the first changes in two to three days and enjoy being weed-free in up to two weeks.

Price

And while customers do mention waiting too long for results, they are delighted with the eventual long-lasting effects. The product’s price is another positive side—for $27.98, you’re getting 32 ounces.

Eraser Weed and Grass Killer Concentrate
Eraser Weed and Grass Killer Concentrate
Eraser Weed and Grass Killer Concentrate

Best for Gravel

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  • Quickly becomes rainfast
  • Affordable
  • Fit for large areas
  • Seeing first results may take a week
  • Need to be especially careful with pets

Overview

This non-selective, industrial weed killer is an excellent choice for brick and gravel walkways and for use around buildings and fences. But even if you’re preparing to plant flower beds, vegetable gardens, or entire wildlife habitat, renovating the area with Eraser would be the right start. Woody brush, trees, annuals, and perennials—this weed killer can easily get rid of them all.

Ingredients

Eraser is so deadly for weeds because it contains 41% glyphosate and an added surfactant. Just be aware that once this post-emergent has dried, you should wait for an additional two days before letting your pets near the site.

Ease of Use

This popular weed killer for large areas should be applied on a still day when there’s no wind. And don’t fret if you don’t see any changes for a whole week. This post-emergent herbicide kills the plant from the inside out—as soon as you start seeing changes, the plant is as good as dead. In general, the weeds should be gone in up to two weeks.

Price

Customers love Eraser for being fast and effective. Regarding price, it is considered mid-range as you’ll have to pay around $30 for 32 ounces of this great weed killer for gravel.

Gordon’s Speedzone Lawn Weed Killer
Gordon’s Speedzone Lawn Weed Killer
Gordon’s Speedzone Lawn Weed Killer

Best for Cool Weather

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  • First results visible very quickly
  • Affordable
  • Great cool weather performance
  • Need to follow instructions carefully
  • Instructions may seem complicated

Overview

This selective, post-emergent weed killer shows excellent performance, and according to many, it’s the best broadleaf weed killer for lawns in cool weather. Numerous users praise it, saying that creeping charlie stopped being an issue for them once they started using Speedzone.

It can be used both on warm and cool-season grass, as long as it’s established. Unlike some other weed killers, you can apply it to Kentucky bluegrass, zoysiagrass, and perennial ryegrass. Speedzone can help you get rid of some 100 broadleaf weeds such as clover, chickweed, poison oak, and ivy… Just be aware that the best herbicide for cool weather shouldn’t be used around any desired crop. Rather, you should limit its use to the institutional and ornamental.

Ingredients

Speedzone does a magnificent job thanks to a wide variety of active ingredients:

  • 2,4-D, 2-ethylhexyl ester (28.57%)
  • Mecoprop-P (5.88%)
  • Dicamba (1.71%)
  • Carfentrazone-ethyl (0.62%)

Ease of Use

This herbicide is generally used for spot treatments due to its selective nature. You’ll be seeing the first effects in just a few hours and complete weed eradication between one and two weeks. After one of the most effective weed killers out there has done its work, wait for two weeks before reseeding the area.

Price

Speedzone is a bit more expensive compared to some of the alternatives, but it’s still worth considering—you can get 20 ounces for approximately $40.

Buyer’s Guide—How to Choose the Best Weed Killer

Are you after water-based sprays? Do you need self-propelled sprayers? While it may be useful to base your research on that, choosing the best possible weed killer is much more complicated. As you’ve probably noticed by now, there are a lot of different herbicides. What you want to achieve, what kind of plants you want to protect, and which ones you want to get rid of will determine which weed killer you choose. Our reviews of weed killer and this buying guide are here to help you make the right choice, which should be based on:

  • Placement. The place you plan to apply a herbicide to will play a huge role in which one you end up picking. If you’re looking to destroy the entire vegetation of your lawn in order to start over, you’ll need a non-selective herbicide. But if you have some lovely plants but want to destroy the ones bothering them, a selective herbicide is the way to go. And if you just need to get rid of the stubborn plants that keep growing between patios, the best herbicide with residual properties makes the most sense.
  • Speed of action. While some weed killers take only hours to start working and a week or two to finish the job, others may take a lot longer. So if quick action is among your priorities, opt for a weed killer which will allow that.
  • Longevity. Different weed killers allow reseeding at different rates. If you want to reseed your lawn right away, getting a good permanent weed killer, such as a residual one, isn’t a good idea. Meanwhile, there are some weed killers which allow reseeding after only two weeks.
  • Safety. As mentioned, weed killers are strong chemicals. For that reason, double-checking what you’re buying and if there’s any danger associated with it is of the utmost importance.
  • Pricing. Finally, while more expensive solutions can sometimes prove to be more effective, there are affordable options that customers are really happy with. Find the balance between your budget and the effects you want to see to pick the right weed killer for you.

How Do Weed Killers Work?

Weedkillers are essentially chemicals in liquid form. Once they come into contact with an unwanted plant, they destroy it via a mechanism of action (MOA) specific for that type of herbicide. Option A is for it to block protein photodecomposition, production, and photosynthesis. Option B is preventing root formation or destroying it. And while some weed killers target specific plants, others will destroy every plant they come in contact with.

One thing worth mentioning is that some weeds develop herbicide resistance after being exposed to it for some time. However, the Herbicide Resistance Action Committee (HRAC) is dedicated to solving that issue. One great source of newest research about liquid weed killers, as well as all other kinds, is the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA).

Weed Killers Best Practices

Even though herbicides aren’t as dangerous as pesticides, they are still potent chemicals. To keep safety at the highest level while getting the best results possible, be sure to follow these tips:

  • Wear protective equipment. To protect your skin and eyes from the chemicals as you’re spraying the weed killer, make sure to always wear:
    • Gloves
    • Long sleeves
    • Goggles, and even
    • Pith helmet
  • Follow instructions down to the letter. Only by closely following instructions on the label will you succeed in weeding out those plants. If you start thinking, “This is the highest-rated weed killer for lawns, it will work with a weaker formula,” you’ll make a mistake. You’ll end up having to use even more of it to get real results.
  • Avoid high temperatures. If you apply a non-selective herbicide in high temperatures or even humid conditions, the surrounding plants may suffer due to the weed killer’s volatility. And if it ends up turning into vapor, it may reach even more plants.
  • Keep pets safe. The product label will let you know for how long both you and your pets should steer clear of the lawn—these are some potent chemicals we’re talking about. However, we would strongly suggest getting pet insurance nonetheless, as you can never be too safe.

Types of Weed Killer Products

Not all weed killers work the same way. Some kill every plant they get into contact with, while others are highly selective. But that’s only the beginning of their differences. The most common types to know about are:

  • Selective. Certain weed killers will only kill specific weeds while not being harmful to others.
  • Non-selective. On the other hand, plenty of weed killers will kill everything they come into contact with, which is why being mindful of the wind is very important with these types.
  • Systemic. With a systemic weed killer, the plant will absorb it and transport it from sap to root, making it unable to absorb the necessary nutrients. As a result, the plant is prevented from producing chlorophyll and will shrivel up and die in one or two weeks.
  • Residual. This type of weed killer works by setting a weed-killing barrier that prevents further seeding. And while killing existing plants may take as long as 28 days, it prevents new ones from growing for the whole season.
  • Contact. Finally, contact weed killers are among the most effective weed killers. They are usually non-selective and kill a plant by coming into contact with its leaves. They work fast—you could get rid of those stubborn weeds in as little as a few days.

High Quality Weed Killers in 2022 – At a Glance

Tenacity—Best for both pre-and post-emergence

Spectracide—Best variety of weeds affected

Bayer Celsius WG—Best for St. Augustine grass

Compare n Save—Best for lawn renovation or restoration

RM43—Best total vegetation killer

Eraser—Best for gravel

Speedzone—Best for cool weather

Key Takeaways

Whether you’re taking out a home improvement loan and looking to renovate your entire yard from scratch or just need some weed suppression so your garden can look a bit nicer, weed killers are what you need.

There’s a specific type for every gardener’s need, every climate, and every kind of weed you want to get rid of. As long as you follow our best practices and tips for choosing the one product for you, you’ll accomplish your goal in no time.

FAQ

What kills weeds permanently?

There are weed killers which prevent weeds from regrowing for a whole year. As long as you follow the instructions carefully, certain weed killers can make your lawn weed-free for quite a while.

What weed killer is safe for pets?

Most are safe as soon as they dry, but some suggest you wait a bit longer before letting your pets around the treated plants. To be entirely sure your pet is good to go, read and follow the instructions carefully.

How many times do you have to apply weed killer?

Once again, that depends on the kind of weed killer you’re using. While some require repeat applications after two to three weeks, the more permanent ones need just one every six months.

How long does weed killer take to work?

Contact weed killers can show first results in as little as a few hours, while non-selective ones could take a whole week. Meanwhile, residual weed killers can take a whole month, but they offer more permanent protection.

What is the top weed killer?

With so many ways to use weed killers, we really can’t say one is better than all other. Finding the best weed killer largely depends on where you’re using it, on which plants, and for what purpose.