How did Stihl’s 12V Garden Pruner give rise to the year’s biggest scam? Imitation is the highest form of flattery, and in Stihl’s case, their must-have miniature chainsaw gave people ideas that have lacked integrity.
If you’re not familiar with the Stihl GTA 26 Garden Pruner, it’s a 4-inch battery-powered chainsaw that’s incredibly handy. When your hedge trimmer or pruners can’t cut it and a chainsaw is inconvenient, this little chain pruner is a great tool to have on hand.
Unfortunately, the design is so enticing, and it’s been so hard to find them in stock, that knock-off versions and some questionable advertisements have been trapping folks in various scams.
What the Stihl Garden Pruner Scams Look Like
One of the most popular ones takes you to a page that looks legit and seems to offer the pruner at a crazy-good price of $20 to $50. But when you order, you wait weeks or even months to find out that it’s a cheap knock-off. It looks the same and it’s even the same color scheme. It’s just not a Stihl and is much lower quality.
Another one makes it look like you’re ordering the saw from start to finish, but if you miss the fine print, you miss that you’re only ordering a chain.
A couple of other folks reported to us that they ordered one of these—or thought they did—and then received a hand saw—not a power tool, and definitely not a Stihl.
Folks left comments that they aren’t getting responses to email inquiries—and, in some cases, the website they ordered from has shut down.
And the problem goes far beyond this product. Websites keep popping up with kayaks, knives, computers, and more with super-low prices and a short timeframe that make it very tempting.
What Should We Take Away From This?
If it looks a little sus, trust your instincts—deals that are too good to be true usually are. And if you’re not sure, ask someone else to take a look at it with you before pulling out your credit card.
When it comes to Stihl specifically, they are a 100% dealer network company and you can only buy authorized Stihl tools from one of those dealers. If you’re interested in the GTA 26, start at the StihlUSA website where you can visit their dealer page to find somebody who sells Stihl—for real—in your area.
We hope this helps clear up some of the confusion that’s out there. If you have any feedback or questions for us, leave them in the comments below, and as always, thanks for reading!