Man pushing snowblower

How To Find The Right SNOWBLOWER For You

Winter is coming, and if you haven’t already started shopping for a snowblower, it’s time to start.

This guide will help you understand snow blowers before purchasing one of these machines, from electric vs. gas-powered models, and the advantages/disadvantages of each type of snowblower.

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    What is a Snowblower?

    A snow blower is a machine that throws and scatters loose snow from surfaces such as sidewalks, roads, parking lots, and lawns.

    Snowblowers are typically used in wintertime to remove accumulated snow.

    With the heaviness of the snow, snowblowers can make short work of a daunting task utilizing a shovel, especially when the snow is deep.

    A snowblower pushes snow with a rotating auger which throws it out the chute.

    The snow is thrown out in front of the machine and then drifts back behind it, preventing clogging up around your driveway or sidewalk.

    This design also prevents snow from being blown towards nearby houses if you’re clearing off snow from the front of your home.

    The snowblower is an easier way to clear your sidewalks and driveway in the winter months, making snow removal safer for you.

    Why You Should Invest In A Snowblower

    You can move faster with a snowblower than shoveling by hand, which means less time outside exposed to cold temperatures.

    However, with the heaviness of the snow, snowblowers can make short work of a daunting task and are typically preferred over shoveling by hand for clearing driveways or walkways when there’s snow and ice on them.

    An investment in a snowblower is a big decision.

    • First, take into consideration the amount of snow where you live. 

    If the snow is often deep and moving the snow with a shovel requires considerable effort, a snowblower would be a good investment. 

    • Next, take into consideration your health and age. 

    When I was younger, I could take any shovel and move the snow with great ease.

    My enthusiasm for shoveling has decreased, as has my physical stamina and ability to be out in the cold, so a snow blower is ideal for me. 

    Lastly, I have many other interests, and my time is valuable to pursue those interests, so the quicker I can complete the task of snow shoveling, the better.

    Types Of Snow Blowers Available

    Snowblowers can be electric: corded/battery-powered or gas-powered depending on the model you purchase, and there are many brands out there with various features, so you’ll need to do some research before making a final decision.

    A gas snow blower is the most powerful and used for heavier snowfall.

    An electric snow blower works best in areas close to a power outlet, while a cordless snow blower can be taken anywhere but has less power than gas or corded electric models.

    Pros And Cons Of Each Type Of Snowblower

    Gas Snow Blowers

    Gas snow blowers are best for larger areas because they’re powerful and don’t require a cord to operate, so you can clear snow from much bigger spaces without having to stop every few minutes to unplug your machine or take care of the cord.

    Pros:

    The main pros of a gas snow blower is that they are more powerful than any other type.

    As a gas engine operates the blower, the horsepower capability is limited only to the size of the machine. 

    This means that a gas-powered blower has the power to handle deep snow when other blowers may bog down and stall.

    Cons: 

    The cons of gas snow blowers include the noise they produce, fuel costs, weight, and maintenance. 

    Engines can be loud, and a gas-powered snow blower is no exception. 

    Wearing hearing protection while using is highly recommended. 

    I know that the driveway next to my home creates an echo canyon, so the blower noise is twice as loud when clearing this area.

    Fuel and oil are required to operate a gas blower, so care must be taken to store these items carefully. 

    Lastly is maintenance, and if you are not handy at fixing or maintaining the blower, you will need to arrange delivery of the machine to someone who can complete this task. 

    As the device is heavy, you also need to consider getting the snowblower to a service person.

    Electric Snow Blowers – Corded

    Electric snow blowers are quieter than gas and have less power, so they may not handle heavier or wet snow well.

    Pros:

    An electric snow blower has more power than a cordless blower but less than a gas blower, which is more adaptable under more conditions.

    Cons:

    You need an electrical outlet.

    You need to ensure that the cord you are using has the proper rating for the cold weather for safety and electricity flow.

    Cordless or Battery Powered Snow Blowers

    Battery Powered Blowers have the least amount of power as compared to a cordless or gas-powered model. 

    Pros:

    The pros of cordless snow blowers are the mobility and lack of need for an outlet when moving snow.

    A cordless blower is quieter compared to a gas-powered snowblower.

    Cons:

    The cons of a cordless snow blower are the limited power, short battery life, and inability to handle heavy snow.

    The length of time you can utilize the blower depends on the battery life, which will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, the battery wattage, and the air temperature in which the batteries are used.

    For example, the colder the temperature is outside when clearing the snow, the quicker the snowblower’s battery will decline. 

    So this may mean stopping the task at hand, recharging the battery, and going out for a second time to clear the snow.

    As cordless snow blowers do not have the horsepower of a gas-powered snow blower, they will not be able to clear snow deeper than 4 inches.

    No one type of blower fits every person or property, so it just depends on what you’re looking for in a snowblower.

    How To Choose The Most Suitable Snowblower For Your Needs

    Purchase a gas-powered snow blower if your needs are one or more of the following:

    • You live in a mountainous area.
    • You need to clear a large area on your property of snow.
    • You clear the snowfall more than three times a week.
    • You live in an area with massive amounts of snow; more than 4 inches accumulate regularly.
    • You have a large property with steep inclines to clear.
    • You have a large driveway either in length or width.
    • You have a safe way to purchase and store gas and oil.

    Purchase a corded snowblower if:

    • You live where there is moderate snowfall; generally around 0-4 inches
    • You are clearing smaller paths, porches, or stairs.
    • You clear the snowfall once a week or less.
    • You live in a townhouse or apartment with little outside snow clearing to complete.
    • You have no steep inclines to clear.
    • You have easy access to an electrical outlet.

    Purchase a cordless snow blower if your needs include:

    • If you live in an area where snowfall is generally around 0-4 inches
    • You are clearing smaller paths, porches, or stairs.
    • You have no steep inclines to clear.
    • You do not have easy access to an electrical outlet.
    • You do not want to deal with a power cord in the winter.
    • You do not want to deal with the maintenance of an engine.
    • You live in a townhouse or apartment with little outside clearing to complete.
    • You clear the snowfall three times a week or less.

    Need more information on snowblowers to help with your decision?  We have you covered in our guide called: Snowblowers 101 Mystery Revealed. Head on over and check it out.

    Regardless of what type of machine you choose, follow the manufacturers’ guide and always maintain the snowblower during the summer months and replace worn-out parts on time which helps keep things running smoothly without problems down the line. In addition, maintenance will help prevent problems down the line that can cost money and time.

    Check out the following machines that we beleive best match the needs discussed above.

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    Troy-Bilt 61 cm (24 in.) 3-Stage 272 cc Gas Snow Blower

    This 3 stage, 205 lb. snowblower will power through deep snow and as it has a larger chute the snow will fly further.  

    This is the one for you if you

    • live in a mountainous area with massive amounts of snow; more than 2 feet accumulate regularly..
    • clear the snowfall more than three times a week.
    • have a large property with steep inclines to clear.

    Briggs & Stratton 1696614 Dual-Stage Snow Thrower with 208cc Engine and Electric Start, Black - Gas

    This 2 stage, 184 lb. snowblower will be your best friend in winter, clearing up to 20 inches of snow and is best if you

    • live in an area with massive amounts of snow; more than 4 inches accumulate regularly.
    • have a large property with steep inclines to clear.
    • have a large driveway either in length or width.

    Snow Joe SJ625E 21-Inch 15-Amp Electric Snow Thrower, 180° Adjustable Directional Chute, 3-Watt LED Light, Move 800-Pounds of Snow Per Minute - Corded

    This single stage, corded, 15 amp,  35 lb. gas free snowblower will clear up to 12 inches of snow and is ideal for:

    • moderate snowfall
    • clearing smaller driveways
    • have no steep inclines to clear
    • have easy access to an electrical outlet

    GreenWorks 2600502 13 Amp 20-Inch Corded Snow Thrower

    This single stage, corded, 13 amp,  30 lb. gas free snowblower will clear up to 12 inches of snow and is ideal for:

    • moderate snowfall
    • clearing smaller driveways
    • have no steep inclines to clear only flat surfaces
    • have easy access to an electrical outlet

    Snow Joe 24V-X2-SB18 18-Inch 48-Volt 4.0-Ah Cordless Snow Blower, Kit (w/2 x 24-Volt 4.0-Ah Batteries and Rapid Charger)

    This single stage, cordless, 40 lb. gas free snowblower will clear up to 10 inches of snow and is ideal for:

    • an area where snowfall is generally around 0-4 inches
    • clearing smaller driveways, paths, porches, or stairs
    • do not have easy access to an electrical outlet
    • do not want to deal with a power cord in the winter

    Greenworks PRO 20-Inch 80V Cordless Snow Thrower, Battery Included

    When doing my research to find what would work best for me I purchased this Greenworks Product.  It has not let me down over the past three years in performance, even when I pushed its limits.  This machinge is great

    • if you live in an area where snowfall is generally around 0-12 inches
    • clearing smaller driveways, paths, porches, or stairs even if they have up to a 4o degree incline
    • you do not want to deal with the maintenance of an engine.

    Snow Joe 24V-SS11-XR 24-Volt 11-Inch 5-Ah Cordless Snow Shovel, Blue

    This cordless blower is actually a cordless shovel that weighs in at 12 lbs.  My sister purchased this as she only needed to clear the deck and stairs of her place and the shovel she was unable to manage.  She loves this purchase and it is ideal for:

    • an area where snowfall is generally around 0-4 inches
    • clearing smaller driveways, paths, porches, or stairs
    • do not want to deal with a power cord in the winter
    • clear the snowfall three times a week or less

    Take a look at our guide on electric shovels, Are Electric Snow Shovels Good, if this might be of interest to you.