How much to pay for a decent snowblower

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On Thu, 01 Dec 2005 20:31:11 GMT, "Mitch@this_is_not_a_real_address.com" <> wrote:

Location Location Location.... I may live n Florida and have a much bigger driveway they you do...BUT I bet my snowblower needs are a little different then yours....
I actually live in Western Maryland and my driveway is only about 200 foot long and I do not get very many snowfalls over 6 to 7 inches...and I do not have to get out of the driveway to go to work etc,..I can let it melt if I want to...
But generally I would be recommend buying form a Farm Machinery Dealer, .. not a Home Depot or Lowes or Sears....
Buyt from a dealer who does his own service..John Deere/ Gravely/ Simplicity/Ford/ etc are examples of machines I looked at.... Can Not remember what I paid for it YEARS ago... but I can tell you it has been worth every penny...
Bob G
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On Fri, 02 Dec 2005 10:56:05 -0500, Bob G.

My local tractor dealer carries the exact same Ariens snow thrower models as Home Depot at the exact same price. The difference is that the tractor dealer uses things like torque wrenches when assembling the ones they sell. They also change the oil, put gas in the tank, and make sure everything is adjusted and working CORRECTLY. Then they run through operating instructions with the customer before they help you load it into your truck, or deliver it to your house for you.
During the busy season, if a "Home Depot" snowblower shows up at the Tractor dealer with a problem, and an hour later I bring in the one I bought from the tractor store, who do you suppose will get their snow thrower back first?
Commodore Joe Redcloud
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Commodore Joe Redcloud wrote:

Once upon a time I believed that was the case. Where I am we have lawn and garden retailers. Purchase a mower from them and expect better service. Truth is you'll still wait until their bread and butter commercial customers have been taken care off. Bet the same holds true in the winter season with snow throwers.
I purchased an MTD snow thrower 9 years ago at COSTCO. So far it has been serving me fine. Regular oil changes and lubrication helps. So does not pushing through a drift when the system is already bogging down from the load. Let any machine remain working at it's optimum speeds and chances are they'll last much longer.
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It will always be the case. It's simple business 101 and human nature.

So, once again, if you being in a snowblower you bought at costco, and I bring in one I bought from the tractor store, which of us will get serviced first?

No argument there, but that has nothing to do with which of us gets better service if something DOES break. As I pointed out, I pay the same for the snowblower at the tractor store as I do at the big box stores like costco and HD. I get a lot more for my money, both in setup/delivery, and after the sale as a service customer. PLUS, I helped the local economy where I live, and helped keep taxes down.
Commodore Joe Redcloud
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Okay, a followup question. (and yes, I will be checking Google)- in doing some casual snow-blower tire kicking today, while running other errands, I couldn't help noticing that several brands and models appeared to be the same machine, just with different badges. How many companies really make these things? And other than, say, nicer tires, is the 600 dollar Toro any better than the 500 dollar MTD twin at Sams?
aem sends...
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I am sure that some machines are re-badged generics, but as you point out, they still may not be exactly the same in all respects. Even nicer tires on a snowblower can be a substantial difference. Chances are, if you look them over more closely, there will be other differences too. Meanwhile you are cheating yourself by buying at a big box store. You really are. You can get more value for the same price by going to a real power equipment retailer. This isn't a $30 disposable toaster purchase. You are going to have this thing for 30 years or so.
Commodore Joe Redcloud
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On Mon, 05 Dec 2005 02:49:46 GMT, Commodore Joe Redcloud

Commodore is absolutely right: a lot of these smaller shops are selling at prices very competitive with the big box stores, and the service is unrivaled. I bought a new Weber grill last year not from HD, but from a local merchant for the SAME price, and the local merchant ALSO threw in a cute $5 jar of hot sauce and filled up my propane tank at no extra charge. HD doesn't do that!
Please, do yourself and your local economy a favor and look in your yellow pages for local power equipment dealers and buy from them. In the case of a snowthrower, you might pay slightly more than from HD, but you will almost certainly get a better machine and you definitely will get better service.
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Does this help answer your question?
http://www.mtdproducts.com/home.jsp
Greg
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On Thu, 01 Dec 2005 20:31:11 GMT, "Mitch@this_is_not_a_real_address.com" <> wrote:

==============Really depends on Location location & location PLUS how big a drive you will need to clear....
I have owned a Simplicitry 8Hp snow blower for over 10 years now...in fact just woke it up this morning and brought it up to the house . and it fired right up did not even turn over twice before it was running...
It was not cheap...(slightly over $1,000) but it has been mostly trouble free... and the few times I had problems the Farm Machenry dealer had it "fixed" and working within a few hours... they will pick up and deliver within 10 miles free...
I always recommend a dealer who has on site repair shops like Farm Equiptment dealers etc... Home Depot, Sears and Lowes do not get any of my business for lawn and garden equiptment...
I figure my cost is now about 100 bucks a year (and dropping) plus I have not had another heart attack shoveling snow
Bob G.
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Off topic of price, please be sure to research maintenance. I've seen at lesat two snow blowers where the chain had not been oiled. Really set up, and a lot of work to replace the drive chain. Worth researching how to oil the various parts, every year.
Drive belts need to be replaced. I know... mine did. Not all drive belt sellers are the same. One local place sold me a belt that was twisted into a plastic bag. That promptly threw off the pulley and jammed. Another online place was both cheaper, but also shipped me flat belt (which I've been using since then).
--

Christopher A. Young
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Get a two stage Arens - it will not fail you.
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