I'm going to have to bite the bullet and get one. The local guys want
$35 a pop to clear the driveway, and we've already had 2 or 3 heavy
snows here in northwestern IL.
From what I've read in the archives, Ariens seems to be a favorite.
There's only one Ariens dealer locally, so I'm going to go out there
today and see what they have. My experience with them (at least with
John Deere equipment) is that their prices are pretty high.
Anyone know the going street price for the Ariens 926LE?
Also, Home Depot is offering 12 months same-as-cash (which I could
really use!) but they only have Yard Macines and Toro.
in buffalo ny we only get 90 inches of snow per year and we're tired of
operating and repairing the gas operated machines.
we first played with the toro snow broom last year it's fun, and just
bought the toro 1800. electricity no gasoline. so great it when they
start everytime. go to epinions.com and read some reviews.
with a 26" 8hp gas craftsman 10 years old, if you always will think
your machine can eat into heavy plowed snow and ice with its
self-propelled appetite and noisy power, you will be fixing it just
like i did about every 2 hours.
I don't know, but you must have had a lemon for a snow blower.
I have a 20 year old Toro, and have never had any problems with it. I live
up in Montreal, so we get quite a bit of snow ourselves, and it has never
In the 20 years, it's been in the shop once for a simple tuneup and
verification of auger blades and balancing etc... but nothing major. Took
it in, simply because for the first 10 years of it's life, it was used
heavily at a commercial establishment, by my Dad, as a primary snow removal
device for a truck loading dock where a snow removal truck was NOT an
I change spark plug on it, once every other year, and thats it...
Maybe a better question is, "How has your brand held up". You will get
a thumbs up/ down on just about everything out there. I'ver heard the least
negative about Ariens but I've had a Craftsman for 9 yrs - 10HP B&S
engine - and no problems whatsoever. If need to store a blower in an
shed or unattached garage I would recommend an electric starter. After it's
warmed up it is easy to re-start but I've only had to do that twice in all
years and that was due to running out of fuel. Hint: Buy yourself one of
those military-like parkas with the hood that envelopes your head and
face. When you inevitably get the blow back you will be glad you have one.
THe YardMachines I bought last year has an electric start, but the only
time I've used it was the first start this year. It always starts on the
first pull, even at -20F (unheated garage). My Crapsman started the first
pull too (except the first of the year). Modern gas engines are much
easier to start than those of 20 years ago.
Home Despot threw in the "cab" when I bought mine last year. It makes it
somewhat harder to manouvre but it does keep the blow-back, um, back,
I have a MTD (yard man) and am very pleased with it. Ariens
is a little out of my price range. Maybe if you use it all
day long might be worth it.
local guys want
or 3 heavy
Maybe a better question is, "How has your brand held up".
You will get
a thumbs up/ down on just about everything out there. I'ver
heard the least
negative about Ariens but I've had a Craftsman for 9 yrs -
engine - and no problems whatsoever. If need to store a
blower in an
shed or unattached garage I would recommend an electric
starter. After it's
warmed up it is easy to re-start but I've only had to do
that twice in all
years and that was due to running out of fuel. Hint: Buy
yourself one of
those military-like parkas with the hood that envelopes your
face. When you inevitably get the blow back you will be
glad you have one.
I don't know about the others but we have found out recently
John Deere's agents will rip you off rather than tell you
all you need
is a 2 dollar replaceable bolt to make money. So their
that good either.
When I need a part for my JD tractor or its snow thrower I look at the
exploded view with my parts guy on his computer and agree on exactly what
part is needed and I buy just that. You need to work with your parts guy,
not consider him your enemy. I easily get what I need, only what I need,
and I am back in service without problem.
The 2 service departments that I deal with are also fine. Sheesh. Beware
of blanket statements like the above.....
That was NOT a blanket statement. Just an illustration of
what happened to me. They wanted me to drag in my
snowblower for service because one of the paddles wasn't
I called a small engine shop near us and "THEY" told us,
without seeing the machine, that all we needed was a
replaceable bolt that snaps off to save the blades and
The JD agent didn't suggest that. He didn't suggest
anything. Just bring it in. Right.
How do you think they stay in business selling a few 2 dollar bolts a
In other cases I have seen people coming in and asking a ton of
questions on how to repair a blower (or other equipment).
Then they buy a 2 dollar gasket and go. I would be annoyed
too if I were the owner. Why should they tell you how to do the
job to save you money? Do you do the same thing with your
car??? Ask the mechanic a ton of questions and then
repair it yourself??? This can be a safety hazzard. Same
applies to power equipment.
The wrong sheer bolt in there can cause problems. If you
hit something and it does NOT break like its suppose to, the
differential with be next in line to go. That get much more
expensive. Have fun replacing that!!!! An honest repair
guy wouldnt charge that much to put in a 2.00 part.
Actually they would install it and give it a quick shot of
grease into the fitting and be done with it.
I bought the 8HP YardMachines unit at HomeDespot last January. My 10YO
Crapsman gave up the ghost and I needed something. IMO, if you're
reasonably strong it's a good deal. It is big and does take some moosing
around (no universal) but it's cheap and does a good job. We're in a
throw away society and I'm not going to fight it. ;-)
I live in Central Ohio and we get an occasional snowfall in excess of 6
inches but 2 - 3 inches seems to be more the norm when it snows.
I have an MTD/YardMan 5.5 hp Tecumseh engine with a 21" width that works
just fine for this type of moderate snowfall. I had a hard time justifying
$900 or so for a snowthrower when it doesn't get used even weekly during the
winter. The YardMan is a single stage that was about $375 new.
If I am out of town on business, my wife or son can use the electric start.
I don't mind shoveling but it's nice to get the driveway/walks cleared
quickly before heading off to work.
Hi Mitch. I can tell you this after many years of fixing and selling
used snowblowers. Ariens and Honda are the best. They still continue to
use quality parts. Also a used ariens wouldnt be a bad option.They are
a dime a dozen in the summer. You can still get any part you need for a
30 year old ariens. Honda have the best motors out there. If I had to
buy a new one I would pick between the honda and ariens. Keeping in
mind you will need servicing from time to time and will you be able to
get parts 10 years down the road? Good luck
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