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5 Best Pre Emergent Weed Killers

5 Best Pre Emergent Weed Killers

Most recommended
RM43RM43 43-Percent Glyphosate Plus Weed Preventer Total Vegetation Control
  • 1-Gallon
  • Treats 17,297 square feet
  • Prevents for up to 1 year

A good choice too
ScottsRoll over image to zoom in Scotts Halts Crabgrass & Grassy Weed Preventer
  • For Early Spring
  • Rainproof
  • Size: 5, 000Sq

A good choice too
ScottsScotts 32367F Lawn Food, 5,000 sq. ft
  • For Early Spring
  • Not use on dichondra
  • Size: 5, 000Sq

Quali-ProQuali-Pro Prodiamine 65 WDG
  • 5 lbs
  • Active Ingredient: Prodiamine
  • Easy to Use

Southern AgSouthern Ag - 12401
  • 32 oz
  • Selective Pre-emergence
  • Surface applied herbicide

Choose the Best Pre Emergent Weed Killer

Customer’s Choice: the Best Rated Pre Emergent Weed Killers

398 users answered this survey. Please help us improve this review!

51.76% of users selected RM43, 19.6% selected Scotts, 12.06% selected Scotts Turf Builder, 3.77% selected Quali-Pro and 12.81% selected Southern Ag. Every month we analyze your answers and change our rating.

So, you have a problem with weeds. If you want to get rid of them even before they appear, consider using one of the pre-emergent weed killers. 

Reasons to use pre-emergent weed killers:

  • Pre-emergent herbicides discourage weed from germinating and post-emergent weed killers attack weeds that have already sprouted above the surface;
  • These products could be a vital aspect of a weed control strategy for every type of land. A top-notch product operates by killing weeds before or after germination, so they never get a chance to grow. When you can avoid weeds this way, you’ll waste less time for removing weeds or spraying your grass with post-emergence herbicides in the spring;
  • The strongest pre-emergent weed killer is one that prevents the seeds free from germination;

It can be challenging to buy proper herbicide in this category. There are so many pre-emergent products for different types of weeds and grass. Check the following guide with top 5 pre-emergent weed killers along with the comparison table. Also, in the end, you may find tips for buyers. 

RM43 Glyphosate Plus Weed Preventer – the best for long action!

RM43 43-Percent Glyphosate Plus Weed Preventer Total Vegetation ControlRM43 is an effective herbicide used in a number of uses, whether you’re protecting your driveway, barns, fence rows, or tennis courts.

RM43 is engineered not only to destroy weed species when they’ve already grown, but also to discourage them from emerging, making it suitable for fence rows, sidewalks, driveways, and along the perimeters of places that are hard to cut or mow.

Tips for users: RM43 is successful at any time it is applied, but the maximum production of most plants is reached in the late spring or early summer when crops are actively developing. Spray the product on quiet, dry, sunshine days to achieve the best performance.
  • Extensive durability – prevent the vegetation for 1 year
  • Good for spot control
  • Easy to spread
  • Pet and environmental-friendly
  • Concentrated
  • Water-resistant
  • Do not use for the areas with crops because it prevents the growth of all vegetation

The feature of this weed killer is that it is good for the ecosystem as well as for pets and babies. What it takes is for you to implement through and minimum protection precautions without going overboard.

This is also a perfect option to invest in because it is also weather resistant. This product can yield long-lasting effects that cannot be washed away by wind or storms.

Scotts Halts Grassy Weed Preventer – the best for using all year round!

Scotts Halts Crabgrass & Grassy Weed PreventerOne of the great advantages of this weed killer is that it is both a sturdy and effective product engineered to attack crabgrass as well as grassy weeds. This is perhaps more surprising with this drug is that it is supposed to be introduced only once in the early spring, but this intervention will also inhibit the development of crabgrass as well as other weed types in the summer season.

One explanation why many consumers consider this product so impressive is that diverse environmental factors, such as snowfall, rain and freezing temperatures, would never impede the overall efficiency and output. It’s simple to submit using a spreader.

Tips for users: it is better to apply this product in spring and it will last for a whole summer season. However, you may also apply it in autumn for preventing the spread of moss in winter.
  • Great for preventing crabgrass and grassy weeds
  • Weather-resistant – you may apply it even in winter
  • Suitable for spring and fall application
  • Safe for kids and pets
  • The granules are too fine – difficult spreading
  • Won’t kill such grassy weeds as bentgrass and dichondra

It’s actually one of the finest weed killers you can buy since it’s healthy even with pets and kids around. It can be picked to treat lawns, especially larger ones. In reality, it is capable of handling a very big and wide region of more than 5,000 sq. ft.

Scotts Turf Builder Halts Crabgrass Preventer – the best for the grassy lawns!

Scotts 32367F Lawn Food, 5,000 sq. ftBecause this is a pre-emergent treatment, ensure that you apply it before the weed develops. It’s not going to be all that successful in destroying weeds that are already there.

Tips for users: Apply at the beginning of the spring prior to the 4th mowing while the lawn is still dry and before the temperatures in the range of 80F, to treat the weed before the early stages of development. With better performance, the lawn will collect 1/2 inch of water from the irrigation within 2-3 days of application. All you ought to be sure that you’ll be watering your grass within a matter of days. When you don’t, the drug won’t be consumed as easily, so the results you show won’t be that good.
  • Affordable
  • Compatible with many lawn fertilizers
  • Includes a lawn nutrient
  • Weather-resistant
  • Available in small and large volumes
  • Won’t cope with bentgrass and dichondra lawns
  • Won’t kill the weeds – only for prevention
No, this product isn’t always going to work to hold crabgrass back. It’s even helpful to drive weeds like chickweed and Poa Annua safe, too. Around the same time, it can help to replenish the nutrients of your grass and dramatically enhance the look of your grass.

Quali-Pro Prodiamine Pre-Emergent Herbicide – the best for the large areas!

Quali-Pro Prodiamine 65 WDGWhen you are searching for a pre-emergent weed killer that can be applied on the grass, the Quali-Pro brand might be suitable. It’s only sold in a five-pound container. This should, however, be reused during the seasons. You should then place it in the airtight jar in which it arrives.

This professional pre-emergent herbicide can be spread near trees, on turf, golf courses and lawns. It can effectively kill the most widespread broadleaf weeds all year round – crabgrass, foxtail, goosegrass, Poa Annua, chickweed, spurge, etc.

For 65% Prodiamine, it is intended to be fast-acting and function for up to three months. Bear in mind that this is sold in granular shape. After the substance has been added, you must water the field.

Tips for users: The modular treatment can be good for both spring and fall use, allowing long-term control of crabgrass throughout the season.
  • A well-known brand
  • May kill almost any broadleaf weed
  • Easy to dissolve in granules – the sprayer won’t be clogged
  • Has a container for cost-effective use
  • Good for applying at 45 degrees
  • Good for mixing with other pre-emergent products
  • Won’t cope with the existing weeds – only for prevention
  • Won’t deal with small areas – only for large areas

Quali-Pro has a nice lineup of herbicides with outstanding user feedback. This herbicide functions well in the rain and light and may be used in the spring or autumn. You will try it before any other pre-emergent herbicides, which is a plus since you are more likely to get effects from an early test.

Southern Ag 12401 Pre-Emergent Herbicide – the best for any surface!

Southern Ag - 12401Southern Ag’s Surflan is simple to treat. It requires low maintenance because you don’t even have to water it right away if you’re running out of room or resources to do so. It is compatible with any surface type – from grassy laws to industrial sites.

You may safely apply this herbicide for preventing the growth of such weeds as crabgrass, St. Augustine, Zoysia grass, Buffalo grass, Bermuda grass and even centipedes.

Tips for users: It’s a perfect choice for colder areas where the landscaping season shouldn’t last for a long time. You don’t even need to spray this herbicide right away, making it easy to use if you don’t have much time. You will wait up to 21 days to get water as long as you don’t anticipate excessive rain.
  • One application will be effective for 4 months
  • Versatile use – especially good for broadleaf weeds
  • Can be combined with Roundup or any other weed killer
  • Water-soluble
  • Won’t last long
  • You won’t be able to reseed after the use for 90 days at least
  • Won’t work under heavy rain and during a rainy season

One fascinating aspect of this weed killer is that you can match it up with Vantage or Roundup herbicides. This way, you will avoid weeds that have not sprouted and destroy weeds that are rising in the field.

The Buyer’s Guide

Active components

Brand pre-emergent herbicides are designed for use by landscape workers, farmers, gardeners. Also, they are popular for the weed control at manufacturing and business sites, stadiums, and recreation centers, such as golf courses. Commercial products typically include some of the harshest contaminants and substances – like the notorious Roundup lineup – that have been causing news across the globe in recent years. You may do some research to figure out what chemicals can potentially hurt your pets or children who play outside where you apply the herbicides. 

While selecting a commercial herbicide to be used in your house, test the active ingredients and their potency and take particular caution while applying items with this potency.

Taking into consideration the run-off of water, when you spread such substances, even where you have children or dogs playing about.

Selectivity of action

One of the most critical things to remember when using a pre-emergent herbicide is to figure out what it is really going to destroy.

A targeted weed killer can only destroy certain plants and trees when leaving other animals alone. For residential uses, maybe the safest application of a targeted herbicide is on your lawn – where you probably don’t want to burn all the perfect vegetation, however you want to get rid of unwanted weeds.

A non-selective product can destroy just about everything natural that falls into contact with it. These are the most effective herbicides and should be used with considerable caution, particularly around the plants and vegetation that you want to maintain. Non-selective products are suitable for use in wider fields where you just want it gone, so there is no chance of destroying everything valuable.

For starters, nettles may be an annoying, invasive plant that is challenging to remove, so check out this dedicated post about how to get rid of nettles for more in-depth advice.

Duration of action

While referring to the longevity of a weed killer, it applies to the amount of time it can stay involved in the soil following application. You’re going to find there are two styles.

Persistent herbicides can prohibit weeds from re-growing for a given period. It will range from a few days or months, up to a year, and probably more – depending on the intensity.

Often classified as residual weed killers, they live in the soil and are usually utilized in places where you choose to hold free from all plant life for as long as possible – without the need for any chemical use. Clearing the vegetation from the driveways is a perfect illustration of this.

The same is true for non-persistent herbicides. These will not deter further development, and plant life can inevitably return to the treated region.

Although this can sound disadvantageous for weed control, it is more important that potential crops may be cultivated in the soil.

The style you pick would focus on what you intend to do over time in other places around your yard.

Method of application

For small lawns and plots, triggers or spray guns are ideal for spreading liquid formulas – particularly if you only need to spot-kill a few weeds.   

When you need a move up, there are bigger bottles available that also come with their spray applicator nozzle.

Granular weed killers are more frequently used in the care of lawns and are delivered using a lawn or seed spreader. These may also be good for flower beds.

For wider fields, tank or backpack sprayers perform well, typically with some sort of distilled liquid weed killer that you require to dilute with water before using.

So certain herbicides you may need (or function well with) a surfactant – which affects the surface tension of the solvent and the specific region on which it is applied. It significantly lets it reach the base with further effective tests.

Tips for choosing a pre-emergent herbicide: 

  • Find out what weeds grow in your garden or lawn. Inspect them during the summer and autumn months. Then pick the pre-emergent product that may cope with these particular weed types before they appear;
  • If you are not sure what weeds you have, check the local nurseries;
  • Carefully read the labels BEFORE using a pre-emergent herbicide. Checking the label, reading web forums, and reacting to suggestions from others who have already been successful/unsuccessful with the product is a perfect way to find out whether it’s right for you;
  • Liquid sprays are quite easy to use for non-selective spread. Granules are better for selective use. But you have to water the plot if you pick granules;
  • There is no need to invest in large bags of pre-emergent weed killer formula if your backyard is quite small;

Final thoughts 

Choosing the best herbicide for your needs is not as easy as you would expect, because there are all sorts of products and chemicals on the U.S. market. Also, all herbicides are divided into a few groups to cope with weeds before or after their appearance. 

The properly picked pre-emergent herbicide could become an important product that helps to avoid this unwelcome weed problem from happening until it starts. In a way, these herbicide products are regular pesticides that will keep crabgrass and similar weeds from spreading on your lawn.

Video Tutorial: Pre-Emergent Weed Control