The 5 Best Honey Extractors [Ranked]
Honey extractors are rugged and simple mechanical devices designed to extract honey from honeycombs without actually destroying the honeycomb (Source).
The way these honey extractors work is by utilizing centrifugal force- a container or drum that contains a frame basket spins and consequently flings the honey out (Source).
The primary advantage of this method is that the wax comb remains intact and the bees can reuse it to make more honey (Source).
For the most part they are manually operated, though the Honey Keeper Extractor is a 4-frame, electric-powered option.
There are actually two different types of extractors the tangential or radial, and they differ by how the frames are contained in the basket (Source).
Our Top Pick: The Little Giant Honey Extractor
- VIVO Electric Honey Extractor - With this product’s quiet 120V AC Motor, extracting honey has never been easier! The honey gate is elevated 15.25” from the floor to help keep the drum clear of extracted honey and allow room for a 5-gallon bucket underneath the gate.
The 24 lb. Little Giant tangential honey extractor is a solid choice- with one beekeeper writing that his warm honey came out after 10 minutes of hard and fast spinning.
He writes that it took two people to perform the honey extraction- one person to hold the machine as another person manned the handle. It was a pretty raucous affair with a decent outcome.
That said, the honey extractor didn't come with instructors and other users claim that the red paint is prone to chipping. So you have to be careful the paint doesn't chip into the honey, contaminating it.
Let's take a look at five of the best selling honey extractors in the market today and see how they compare.
Little Giant Video Overview
Honey Extractors Compared
- VIVO Electric Honey Extractor - With this product’s quiet 120V AC Motor, extracting honey has never been easier! The honey gate is elevated 17.2” from the floor to help keep the drum clear of extracted honey and allow room for a 5-gallon bucket underneath the gate.
- 3 Frames Manual Honey Extractor: With a capacity to hold up to 3 deep, medium, and shallow frames, this honey extractor is the perfect addition to your kitchen or basement. Adapted Honeycomb Size: Deep: 18.9'' x 9'' / 48 x 23 cm and Medium: 18.9'' x 6.3'' / 48 x 16 cm. It's time to enjoy the sweetest harvest of your life with our honey extractor equipment!
- 4/8 Frame Electric Honey Extractor: With a capacity to hold up to 8 small and medium frames, or up to 4 large frames, this honey extractor is the perfect addition to your kitchen or basement. Adapted Honeycomb Size: Deep: 18.9'' x 9'' / 48 x 23 cm and Medium: 18.9'' x 6.3'' / 48 x 16 cm. It's time to enjoy the sweetest harvest of your life with our honey extractor equipment!
- 16 gauge stainless steel tank
- ➤ANTI-RUST MATERIAL & EASY TO CLEAN: Top grade polished stainless steel frame resists rust and abrasion that's built to last, which is also a thoughtful idea for your health and safety. Barrel with sleek finish and seamless welding construction, which can be cleaned easily with soap water after each use.
The 5 Best Honey Extractors For 2023
How To Use Them
As we have observed, the primary reason to use a honey extractor is that you wax comb can be re-utilized by the honey bees-as opposed to crush and strain extraction methods, where the bees will actually have to rebuild the honeycomb structure from scratch.
These honey extractors are often ideal for hobbyists who are conducting small-scale harvesting of their locally grown honeycombs. There isn't a huge market for this bee keeping equipment, so some of these extractors often arrive without instructions, are prone to paint chipping, and sometimes require more assembly than their users anticipate.
That said, some of the negative reviews these products have received occur as a result of people nitpicking small problems with their extractors- and ignoring the fact that, for the most part, they do the job. Beekeeping, or apiculture, is a trending and artisanal hobby that is practiced in many areas of the world.
Many beekeepers maintain bee colonies in hives for the purposes of producing beeswax, pollen, royal jelly, propolis, and for the purposes of crop pollination and for selling their bees to other beekeepers. Beekeeping dates back at least 15,000 years with King Tur keeping jars of honey in his personal tomb. In traditional bee keeping, beekeepers used fixed comb hives- and in this case bee combs were unable to be moved or manipulated for honey management purposes.
More modern beekeeping methodologies utilize top-bar hives, horizontal frame hives as well as vertical stackable frame hives- all of which have different advantages over traditional methodologies, primarily that they are light-weight, easier to harvest honey from, easier for the bees to live stress-free in and more adaptable.
Whether you are a hobbyist, a professional beekeeper, or even in an urban backyard beekeeper, you're probably familiar with the different the colony tasks which consist of a queen bee, many worker bees and male drones. Indeed, with over 20,000 different species of wild bees out there, including carpenter bees, mason bees, bumblebees, giant honeybees and rock bees beekeeping is a practical management practice that is often benefited by the use of honey extractors.
If you are looking to purchase a quality honey extractor, pay close attention to our comparison table at the top of the page, read our reviews, and also check out the individual product pages where you will find other apiaries discussing the pros and cons of the honey extractors that they purchased.
Some Old Favorites
These are some of our previous top picks- check out our comparison table at the top of the page for our up-to-date selections.
How To Make A DIY Honey Extractor
Once your bees have begun to generate honey, you won’t be able to put off getting a honey extractor. There are many commercial honey extractors available. However, they are quite expensive.
If you’re starting, it’s much more economically viable to make your honey extractor. Without a honey extractor, it’s almost impossible to separate sweet honey from the combs without destroying the combs.
Here’s how you can save money by making your own honey extractor. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need.
- Metal paint stirrer
- Wood molding
- Wire mesh
- Zip ties
- A drill
Here’s how you make your honey extractor
- Use the wire mesh to prepare a cylindrical cage. Bend the wire mesh into that shape.
- Make sure that two honey frames can be held in the cylindrical cage. Leave the upper part of the cage open to insert the frames into the cage.
- Take four zip ties and connect the bottom of the cage to the metal part of the paint stirrer.
- Grab your wood molding and make a hole at the center of it. This will let the shaft of the paint stirrer slip through it. Make sure the total length of the wood is equal to the diameter of the cage. In addition to this, make sure the hole at the center is a bit bigger than the shaft.
- Next, make a hole at both sides of the wood molding. The holes should be large enough for one of the zip ties to go through.
- Finally, attach each end of the cylindrical cage to the wood molding with a zip tie.
If you have all of the materials ready, the entire process should take you 30 minutes. As you can see, a honey extractor is quite simple to make. Start making yours today.