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Buying Guide for the Best Snow Blowers

Snow Blower
Amidst the vast array of snow blowers on offer, selecting the one tailored to your specific terrain and average snowfall can seem overwhelming. Contemporary snow removal tools are crafted not just for your home's driveway, but also for country trails, park pathways, parking lots, and store peripheries. So, faced with such diverse options, how do you pinpoint the machine that seamlessly marries functionality and power? Let's embark on a journey through key considerations to guide your choice.
PowerSmart Snow Blower

Power Smart Snow Blower Best Values

PowerSmart Snow Blower 24 Inch 2-Stage 212cc Engine Gas Powered with Electric Start PS24
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With a plethora of snow blowers available in the market, choosing the perfect fit for your terrain and typical snowfall can be daunting. Modern snow removal equipment is designed for clearing paths and driveways near the house, adjacent areas, paths in the country or in the park, areas in the parking lot, near the store. So, how do you navigate this snowy maze to find a machine that boasts the ideal blend of design and might? Let’s delve into some crucial factors you should keep in mind.

The Importance of Having an Efficient Snow Blowers

As winter unfurls its chilly grasp, snow-covered landscapes become a frequent sight in many regions. While the serene beauty of snowfall might be a visual treat, it brings with it the demanding task of snow removal. An efficient snow blower can drastically change your winter experience, and here’s why it’s essential:

  1. Time-Saving: Shoveling snow manually can be time-consuming, especially for larger areas like driveways and parking lots. An efficient snow blower can complete the job in a fraction of the time, freeing up your schedule.
  2. Physical Health: Repeatedly lifting heavy shovelfuls of snow can be hard on the back, shoulders, and heart. By utilizing a snow blower, you reduce the risk of physical strain and potential injuries.
  3. Consistency: Snow blowers offer uniform clearing, leaving behind a neat and consistently cleared path, which can be essential for safety reasons, especially on walkways and driveways.
  4. Versatility: Efficient snow blowers can handle varying snow conditions, from light flurries to dense snowpack, ensuring you’re equipped for whatever winter throws your way.
  5. Economic Value: Although there’s an initial investment, the time and potential medical costs saved in the long run make a snow blower a wise investment. Moreover, well-maintained snow blowers can serve you for many years, offering value for money.
  6. Safety: Snow and ice can be a slipping hazard. Regular and efficient removal of snow ensures safer walkways and driveways, reducing the risk of accidents.
In essence, an efficient snow blower is more than just a convenience tool; it’s an investment in safety, health, and peace of mind during the winter months.
Snow Joe 24V-SS13-TV1 24-Volt IONMAX

Snow Joe 24V-SS13-TV1 24-Volt Best Values

Cordless Snow Shovel Bundle, (w/ 4.0-Ah Battery, Charger, Cover, Ice Dozer, and Extended Warranty)
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Understanding Your Snow Blowing Needs

Before you dive into the world of snow blowers and start comparing models, it’s crucial to assess your specific needs. Knowing exactly what you require will guide your decision and ensure you invest in a machine that serves you well for years to come. Here’s how to evaluate your snow blowing needs:

  1. Estimating Snowfall in Your Area:
    • Light Snowfall:
      • Typically up to 8 inches per snow event.
      • Common in regions with milder winters where snowfall is sporadic and doesn’t accumulate heavily.
    • Moderate Snowfall:
      • Ranges from 8 to 16 inches per snow event.
      • Often seen in areas where winter is pronounced but not extremely harsh.
    • Heavy Snowfall:
      • Exceeds 16 inches in a single snow event.
      • Predominant in areas notorious for severe winters and frequent snowstorms.
    Checking historical weather data or consulting local meteorological services can provide insights into typical snowfall patterns in your region.
  2. Determining the Size and Layout of Areas You’ll Be Clearing:
    • Small Areas: These include short driveways, patios, and walkways. For such spaces, a single-stage or a battery-operated blower might suffice.
    • Mid-sized Areas: For longer driveways and more extensive walkways, you might require a more robust single-stage or even a two-stage snow blower.
    • Large Areas: Expansive driveways, open spaces, or lengthy pathways will benefit from two-stage or three-stage snow blowers that can cover more ground efficiently.
    • Layout Considerations: Think about the terrain (flat vs. sloping), the presence of obstacles (like cars or trees), and surface type (gravel, asphalt, or concrete). These factors can influence the type and features of the snow blower you should choose.
  3. Frequency of Snowfalls and Their Typical Durations:
    • Infrequent Snowfalls: If your area experiences only a handful of snow events annually, investing in a premium, high-capacity machine might not be necessary. A basic model could suffice.
    • Regular Snowfalls: Areas with snowfall every week or even more frequently during winter require a durable and reliable snow blower, as it will see frequent use.
    • Duration: Long-lasting snowfalls that span over several days might lead to significant accumulation, necessitating a more potent snow blower, even if each individual snow event isn’t exceptionally heavy.
In essence, understanding your snow blowing needs requires a combination of research and introspection. By aligning the machine’s capabilities with your specific conditions and requirements, you ensure a smoother, more efficient snow-clearing experience.

Snow Joe SJ618E Electric Walk-Behind

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Snow Joe SJ618E Electric Walk-Behind Single-Stage Snow Blower, 18-inch, 13-Amp,Blue

Types of Snow Blowers

Selecting the ideal snow blower is easier when you have a grasp of the various models and their capabilities. Here’s a breakdown of the primary types of snow blowers available in the market:

  1. Single-stage Electric Snow Blowers:
    • Functionality: Powered by electricity and operates using a cord.
    • Advantages: Lightweight, quieter than gas models, and ideal for areas close to power outlets.
    • Best For: Light snowfalls (up to 8 inches) in smaller areas like sidewalks and short driveways.
  2. Single-stage Gas Snow Blowers:
    • Functionality: Gasoline-powered, these machines scoop up snow and throw it out in a single motion.
    • Advantages: More power compared to electric models and no cord restrictions.
    • Best For: Moderate snowfalls in mid-sized areas.
  3. Two-stage Gas Snow Blowers:
    • Functionality: Features a powerful auger to break up the snow and an impeller to discharge it through the chute.
    • Advantages: Self-propelled, capable of handling deeper snow, and can work on varied terrains including gravel.
    • Best For: Snowfalls deeper than 8 inches and larger or uneven areas.
  4. Three-stage Gas Snow Blowers:
    • Functionality: Operates with an auger, impeller, and an accelerator for faster snow removal.
    • Advantages: Enhanced snow clearing speed and capability.
    • Best For: Very heavy snowfalls and challenging conditions.
  5. Battery-powered Snow Blowers:
    • Functionality: Runs on rechargeable batteries.
    • Advantages: Cordless operation, quieter, and more environmentally friendly than gasoline models.
    • Best For: Light to moderate snowfalls in areas where a cord or gasoline would be inconvenient.
  6. Manual Snow Throwers:
    • Functionality: Non-motorized, hand-powered tools that scoop and throw snow as they are pushed.
    • Advantages: Lightweight, easy to maneuver, and no need for fuel or electricity.
    • Best For: Light snowfalls in small areas, especially when storage space is limited.
When evaluating the type of snow blower to purchase, consider the average snow conditions in your area, the size and terrain of the space you need to clear, your budget, and storage constraints. Each type of snow blower has its strengths, and understanding them will help you choose the one that aligns best with your needs.

Snow Blowers Safety and Maintenance

A snow blower is a valuable tool for winter maintenance, but like all machinery, it requires proper handling and care. Here are some key safety and maintenance tips to ensure your snow blower operates effectively and lasts for many seasons:

Safety Tips:

  1. Read the Manual: Always start by thoroughly reading the manufacturer’s instructions. It will provide crucial information about your specific model.
  2. Wear Appropriate Attire: Use safety goggles to protect against flying debris, wear non-slip boots to prevent slips, and avoid loose clothing that can get caught in moving parts.
  3. Keep Hands and Feet Clear: Never insert hands or feet into the snow blower. If there’s a jam, turn off the machine and use a clearing tool or stick to remove the blockage.
  4. Operate in Clear Visibility: Only use your snow blower when you have good visibility. Avoid operating it in the dark unless the area is well-lit.
  5. Stay Alert: Be aware of your surroundings. Watch out for hidden obstacles or icy patches.
  6. Ventilation: If you have a gas-powered snow blower, start and run it outdoors. Never operate it in an enclosed space to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
  7. Refuel with Care: Allow the engine to cool before refueling. Gasoline fumes can ignite if exposed to hot components.

Maintenance Tips:

  1. Regular Inspections: Before each use, inspect your snow blower for any signs of damage or wear. Pay special attention to the auger, belts, and any moving parts.
  2. Change the Oil: For gas-powered models, change the oil at the start of each season or after every 25 hours of use.
  3. Spark Plug Maintenance: Check the spark plug regularly for wear and replace it once a season to ensure smooth operation.
  4. Clean After Each Use: Snow, ice, and salt can lead to corrosion. After each use, clean the machine and let it dry before storing.
  5. Check Belts: Inspect the belts for any signs of wear or damage and replace them if necessary.
  6. Storage: At the end of the season, stabilize any remaining fuel or drain the machine completely. Store your snow blower in a dry, cool place.
  7. Lubrication: Regularly lubricate moving parts as per the manufacturer’s recommendations to ensure longevity and smooth operation.
  8. Replace Shear Pins: If you notice the auger isn’t turning, it might be due to a broken shear pin. Always have replacements on hand and consult your manual for guidance on replacement.
By following these safety and maintenance guidelines, not only will you ensure a longer lifespan for your snow blower, but you’ll also ensure safer, more efficient operation during those cold winter months.

PowerSmart 21-Inch Corded Snow Blower,

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PowerSmart 21-Inch Corded Snow Blower, Electric Snowthrower with 15-Amp Motor, DB5021

Key Features to Consider When Choosing a Snow Blower

When you’re in the market for a snow blower, the numerous options available can make the choice daunting. However, by understanding and considering certain key features, you can narrow down your options and find the perfect machine for your needs. Here’s a rundown of the essential features to keep in mind:

  1. Power Source:
    • Gas: Offers more power and is ideal for larger areas and heavier snowfall.
    • Electric (corded): Best for smaller areas and lighter snowfall. Requires proximity to a power outlet.
    • Battery-powered: Provides the flexibility of cordless operation and is suitable for light to moderate snowfall.
  2. Clearing Width:
    • Determine how wide a path the snow blower clears in one pass. A larger clearing width means fewer passes, which can save time on larger driveways.
  3. Intake Height:
    • This measures how deep the snow can be for the blower to handle it effectively. If your area experiences heavy snowfalls, look for a machine with a higher intake height.
  4. Throw Distance:
    • Consider how far the machine can discharge the snow. This is especially crucial if you have a wider area to clear or specific places where you want the snow to land.
  5. Self-Propelled vs. Manual:
    • Self-propelled models can significantly reduce your effort, especially in deeper snow or sloping terrains.
  6. Speed Settings:
    • Multiple speed settings allow for greater control, especially useful in varied snow conditions.
  7. Start Type:
    • Electric Start: Offers the convenience of starting the machine with a button, typically found on gas models.
    • Recoil Start: Requires manual pulling to start, common in some gas models.
    • Push-button Start: Typical in electric and battery-powered models.
  8. Tires and Traction:
    • Look for machines with durable tires, and for challenging terrains, consider models with treads or even chains for added grip.
  9. Adjustable Chute:
    • An adjustable chute allows you to direct the snow where you want. Some models offer remote chute controls, letting you change direction without stopping.
  10. Heated Handles:
  • A luxury feature, but in colder climates, heated handles can make the snow removal process much more comfortable.
  1. Headlights:
  • If you anticipate clearing snow in low light conditions or during early morning/evening hours, integrated headlights can be invaluable.
  1. Foldable Handles:
  • For those with limited storage space, foldable handles can make storing your snow blower much more manageable.
  1. Warranty and Brand Reputation:
  • Consider the manufacturer’s reputation and the warranty offered. A robust warranty can provide peace of mind.
By keeping these features in mind and weighing them against your specific needs, terrain, and typical snowfall, you’ll be better equipped to select a snow blower that’s both efficient and durable.

Leading Brands in the Snow Blower Industry

When it comes to snow blowers, a few brands have stood out over the years, earning trust through reliability, innovation, and quality. Here are some of the top names in the industry:

  1. Toro: A household name, Toro is known for its high-quality machines that offer longevity and performance.
  2. Husqvarna: With a reputation for powerful engines and rugged design, Husqvarna is a go-to brand for many homeowners and professionals alike.
  3. Ariens: Often hailed as the “king of snow”, Ariens offers a wide range of snow blowers, from compact models to professional-grade machines.
  4. Honda: With their renowned engines, Honda snow blowers are known for reliability and efficient performance.
  5. Craftsman: A popular brand in North America, Craftsman is known for its durable and user-friendly designs.
  6. John Deere: While more famous for tractors, John Deere’s snow blowers are built with the same attention to quality and durability.
  7. Snow Joe: For those leaning towards electric models, Snow Joe offers some of the best battery-powered and corded snow blowers in the market.
  8. Cub Cadet: Their 3X series, in particular, stands out as a robust three-stage snow blower, capable of tackling even the heaviest snowfalls.

The Importance of a Good Warranty and What to Look For:

A warranty is more than just a safety net; it’s a statement of confidence from the manufacturer in their product. Here’s why it’s crucial and what to consider:

  1. Peace of Mind: Knowing that your machine is covered against potential defects or issues offers peace of mind, ensuring that your investment is protected.
  2. Durability Indicator: Often, a longer warranty indicates the manufacturer’s belief in the product’s durability and longevity.
  3. Cost Savings: Repairs can be expensive. A good warranty can save you significant amounts in case of unforeseen issues.

Key Aspects to Consider in a Warranty:

  1. Length of Warranty: While longer is generally better, it’s essential to know what’s covered during different periods. Some warranties offer extended coverage on specific parts, like the engine, beyond the general warranty period.
  2. Coverage Scope: Not all warranties are created equal. Some cover just the parts, some parts and labor, while others might include replacement in certain situations.
  3. Transferability: If you’re considering selling your snow blower down the line, a transferable warranty can add to its resale value.
  4. Claim Process: Understand the process of making a claim. Is it straightforward? Are there particular service centers you need to visit?
  5. Exclusions: Always read the fine print. Be aware of what’s not covered and any actions or situations that might void the warranty.
  6. Customer Reviews: Often, the true test of a warranty is in the claim process. Check customer reviews to see if others have had positive experiences with the brand’s warranty service.
In conclusion, while the brand speaks to reputation and reliability, a solid warranty underscores a company’s faith in its product. Both are integral when investing in a snow blower that you expect to serve you for many winters to come.

PowerSmart Snow Blower Gas Powered

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PowerSmart Snow Blower Gas Powered 24 in. 208cc B&S Engine with Electric Starter, Handle Warmer, Self-Propelled, 2-Stage Snowblower BS24

How Much Does a Snow Blower Cost

Below is a tabulated representation of snow blower costs based on brand and country. Please note, these prices are hypothetical and can vary based on models, features, and current market rates. Always check with local retailers or official brand websites for the most accurate prices.

BrandCountryPrice Range (in local currency)
ToroUSA$300 – $1,500 USD
Canada$400 – $2,000 CAD
HusqvarnaSweden2,500 – 10,000 SEK
USA$350 – $1,800 USD
AriensUSA$400 – $2,500 USD
UK£300 – £1,500 GBP
HondaJapan¥30,000 – ¥150,000 JPY
USA$500 – $2,200 USD
CraftsmanUSA$250 – $1,300 USD
Canada$320 – $1,700 CAD
John DeereUSA$450 – $2,000 USD
Germany€400 – €1,700 EUR
Snow JoeUSA$100 – $800 USD
UK£80 – £600 GBP
Cub CadetUSA$400 – $2,400 USD
France€350 – €2,000 EUR

Remember, prices can fluctuate based on several factors, including import duties, taxes, and even seasonal demand. Always ensure you’re considering the specific model and features when comparing prices.

Average Snow Blower Pricing Snapshot

  • Average Cost: $950
  • Typical Price Range: $285 – $1,600
  • Lowest Price: $130
  • Highest Price: $3,700

Based on data from Home Depot, Walmart, Lowe’s, and Amazon, it’s recommended to shop during May or June. This is when new models are unveiled, and retailers might offer discounts on older stock.

Cost Breakdown by Snow Blower Type

Manufacturers differentiate snow blowers by their stages. Higher stages generally mean more features, power, and cost.

Snowblower TypeTypical Cost
Single-stage$200 – $725
Two-stage$880 – $1,800
Three-stage$1,500 – $2,500

Single-stage Snow Blowers

Best for: Paved spaces, <12 inches of snow

  • Average Cost: $530
  • Price Range: $200 – $725
  • Lowest Price: $129
  • Highest Price: $1,300

These units intake snow with a rotating auger and then expel it through a chute. They are sometimes referred to as snow throwers.

Two-stage Snow Blowers

Best for: Medium to large spaces, 1-2 feet of snow

  • Average Cost: $1,440
  • Price Range: $880 – $1,800
  • Lowest Price: $750
  • Highest Price: $2,500

These machines first collect snow with an auger before handing it off to an impeller which then discharges the snow.

Three-stage Snow Blowers

Best for: Large areas, heavy snowfall

  • Average Cost: $1,440
  • Price Range: $1,500 – $2,500

Akin to two-stage models but enhanced with an additional auger, known as the accelerator auger, for 50% faster snow removal.

Cost by Power Source

Power SourceTypical Cost
Corded electric$150 – $250
Battery-powered$300 – $1,800
Gas-powered$500 – $2,000

Corded Electric Snow Blowers

Best for: Small patios/walkways


  • Clearing width: 15 – 22 in.
  • Clearing depth: 8 – 12 in.
  • Plowing capacity: 450 – 800 lb. / min.
  • Throwing distance: 20 – 30 ft.
  • Weight: 25 – 32 lb.

Keep in mind the need for proximity to an electrical outlet and the potential cost of longer extension cords.

Battery-powered Snow Blowers

  • Average Costs:
    • Single-stage: $550 (Range: $300 – $800)
    • Two-stage: $1,380 (Range: $850 – $1,800)

Gas-powered Snow Blowers

  • Average Costs by Stages:
    • Single-stage: $500 – $950
    • Two-stage: $750 – $2,150
    • Three-stage: $1,500 – $2,500

Price Influence Factors:

  1. Brand
  2. Capability
  3. Durability
  4. Additional features

Typical Costs by Brand

BrandTypical Cost
Ariens$1,150 – $2,000
Briggs & Stratton$600 – $1,500
Craftsman$400 – $1,900
Cub Cadet$650 – $2,500
Earthwise$150 – $400
Ego Power$500 – $1,300
Greenworks$270 – $700
PowerSmart$180 – $900
Ryobi$550 – $1,800
Snow Joe$130 – $400
Toro$600 – $2,000
Troy-bilt$500 – $1,500

Note: Always consider local prices, brand reputation, and warranty options before making a purchase decision.

When winter’s white blanket covers your driveway, the romance of the season can quickly dissipate, replaced by the dread of shoveling mountains of snow. Whether you’re faced with light flurries or back-breaking blizzards, an efficient snow blower can be a game-changer, turning a daunting task into a breeze. As with most equipment, not all snow blowers are created equal. Some are perfect for city sidewalks, while others are designed to tackle expansive driveways in the countryside. If you’re on the hunt for the ideal machine to clear your path this winter, you’re in the right place. This guide will delve into the various types of snow blowers available, key features to consider, and tips to ensure you make an informed decision tailored to your needs. So, before the first snowflake hits the ground, let’s embark on this journey to find the best snow blower for you!

Greenworks 10 Amp 16-Inch Corded Electric Snow Blower, 26022

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Greenworks 10 Amp 16-Inch Corded Electric Snow Blower, 26022

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is a snow blower?

A snow blower, also known as a snow thrower, is a machine designed to remove snow from areas like driveways, sidewalks, and parking lots. It collects snow using an auger and then blows it out through a chute to clear a path.

What are the main types of snow blowers?

There are three main types:
Single-stage: Suitable for light snowfall and small areas.
Two-stage: More powerful, suitable for larger areas and moderate to heavy snowfall.
Three-stage: The most powerful, typically for heavy snowfall and large areas.

How do I choose the right snow blower for my needs?

Consider the size of the area you need to clear, the amount and type of snow you typically receive, and your storage space. For light snow and small areas, a single-stage might suffice. For heavy snow and larger areas, consider a two-stage or three-stage model.

Can snow blowers be used on gravel?

Two-stage and three-stage snow blowers can typically be used on gravel since they have adjustable skid shoes that keep the auger above the ground. Single-stage models are not recommended for gravel as they can pick up and throw stones.

How do I maintain my snow blower?

Regularly check the oil level, keep the machine clean, inspect belts for wear, and replace spark plugs as needed. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for specific maintenance procedures.

Electric vs. Gas-powered snow blowers: Which is better?

Electric snow blowers are quieter, more environmentally friendly, and require less maintenance. However, gas-powered models are more powerful and suitable for larger areas and heavy snowfall. Your choice should be based on your specific needs and preferences.

How do I store my snow blower off-season?

Clean the machine thoroughly, change the oil, drain or stabilize the fuel, and store it in a dry place. It’s also a good idea to remove the spark plug and spray a bit of oil into the cylinder to prevent rust.

Are cordless snow blowers efficient?

Cordless (battery-powered) snow blowers have improved in terms of efficiency and power. They offer the convenience of being cord-free and are perfect for small to medium-sized areas. However, their runtime is limited by battery capacity.

What safety precautions should I take when using a snow blower?

Always read the manufacturer’s instructions first. Wear appropriate protective gear, avoid wearing loose clothing, and never place hands or feet near the auger. Keep children and pets away when the machine is in operation.

How much should I expect to pay for a snow blower?

Prices vary depending on the type, brand, and features. As of 2023, the average cost was around $950, but models can range from as low as $130 to as high as $3,700. It’s essential to research and compare based on your specific needs and budget.

Remember, always refer to the user manual and consult with the manufacturer or a professional for any specific queries or concerns about your snow blower.

Buying Guide for the Best Snow Blowers
Buying Guide for the Best Snow Blowers


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