Okay after last nights dumping of 12" of snow, I figure I 'll open the
wallet and get a snowblower.
What I need is the scoop on the good , bad and ugly of what's out there.
I need at least a 10 hp
Good luck; after a snowfall the 'pickings' may be few!
BTW my neighbours generally aged 55 to 60 plus, in comparison to my mid 70s,
have gone away from the larger 30 inch over 8 HP models saying they are very
heavy to manipulate, which also discourages female members of the family
from even trying to use them! One of them gave away his large one to a
younger son in law who lives some distance away.
Neighbour and I now use my smaller 27 inch (it's either 6 or 8 HP?)
successfully. Including to 'dig out' occasionally, his transport truck, his
two smaller vehicles and our two pickup trucks! With it in cooperation with
others endowed with 'snow blowers, we also look out for neighbours
especially so relatives of the elderly widow can get into her driveway to
So a case can be made for 'mid-size and manoeuvrable; unless of course you
have a 500 foot driveway on a 5 acre lot?
I agree. I often wish I had my little 2 cycle, "paddlewheel" back. Not
self propelled but it was so easy to maneuver around the driveway. However,
when the snow gets deeper than 6 inches it is nice to have a two stage.
Even with a 24 inch, 5 HP I have to walk halfway across the street to get
the thing turned around. I get an average of only 55 inches of snow a year
so that is not bad. If you live somewhere like Rome, NY with an average of
153 inches or Vail, Colorado with 335 inches, it is a different matter.
for 10 HP plan on spending a grand or so. I don't know one brand from
another, but my 3 HP Toro (gas oil mixer) had been very dependable for me.
As you're buying a 10 HP, please be sure and read the manual that comes with
it. Most of them at that size are chain drive for the drive wheels. The
chain needs to be oiled every now and again. I know this, after having seen
several snow blowers with chains rusted solid.
If it won't start, spray ether on the paper filter, not into the spark plug
hole. If you spray into the spark hole, the piston will sieze, and it will
kill the motor. I know, cause a neighbor did this to my Dad's generator.
Its already late in the season to get your pick of any unit...
10 HP??? Thats one way to look at them, usually its in
relation to its size (width)
There are a few things to work on....
How much money to you have to spend?
How large is the driveway????
What is it made of??? Rocks? have fun and make sure
not to aim the snow anywhere near the house or cars etc.
The larger the unit, the more difficult it is to move around.
That could be an interesting problem. How much snow do you get
The smaller (and lighter) the easier it is to move around.
As for brands.... Its real difficult to say "Buy Ariens its the best"
considering the same motor is really used on MANY other brands.
What I would look for at least with a larger motor is electric start
possibly a headlight. The only brand that I know of that makes (and
their own motors, is Honda. I have only heard great reviews of their
equipment. I have also heard they are VERY expensive!
In any two cycle blower these days, I would look for at least a steel
chute. I was a little annoyed looking at the sears (craftsman) units
plastic for that.
Hope this helps!
On 11 Dec 2005 20:02:25 -0800, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
The motor is rarely the first thing to go on a snowblower. Ariens makes the rest
of the machine, and they tend to work well and hold up better than others.
That's why they get recommended so often.
Commodore Joe Redcloud
I have owned and worked on ariens, craftsman etc.
There really isnt that much difference between the brands anymore.
People seems to LOVE John Deere, some of those machines look
identical to MTD blowers. (they make MANY other brands)
Toro still makes unique blowers. Engines are the same as everyone
else but the auger is a barrel type rather then just the blades.
I would still say, but the best blower you can afford! The used
market might be pretty good in your area. It might be worth it to
look at that. Especially if you handy and can repair problems
The decision as of whether you want a 10hp or less has to do with how
deep the expected snow fall is and how far you want to throw the snow.
I live in Northern New Jersey where annual snow fall is not that much;
therefore, in theory, I could do well with the 5hp 2-stages snow
thrower that I am currently using. But the configuration of my
driveway cause me to want a larger horsepower snow thrower. Half of my
driveway is quite wide (3 cars wide and 2 cars long), and half of my
driveway is narrow (one car wide). And the wide-part of the driveway
has garage and house in two sides; this means I must throw the snow to
the other two sides; this also means that I have a hard time throwing
the snow from the sides close to the garage and the house because I
will have to throw the snow quite a distance away, and my 5hp snow
thrower cannot throw that far. I will have to use the machine to throw
the same piece of snow multiple times (let say 3 times) to get the snow
to the other side of the driveway. If I had a larger snow thrower, I
probably only need to throw the same piece of snow at most twice. If
the configuration of your driveway is similar to mine, you may want to
read the Consumer Report to see the rating on how far the snow thrower
can throw the snow before buying it.
On the other hand, if your drive way is narrow (one car wide) and you
can throw the snow in both sides of the driveway, you may find that a
5hp snow thrower is more than enough. It should do OK even in deep
snow fall -- but just a bit slow-going and some back and fro.
Good luck finding a snow thrower after a snow fall though.
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