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  1. #1

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    Default Help! Need recommendations on snow blowers/throwers

    Here in the Northwest like many areas of the Northern part of the USofA we have more than our share of snow. Usually, i can deal with she shoveling, the cold, the gray skies.. but this year we're just getting hammered. I mean seriously hammered by snow. It hardly stops snowing in almost a week. I have to shovel the driveway 3 to 4 times a day.

    Most of the stores here are sold out of snow blowers.. but I may be able to buy one from another part of the state that still has some in stock. I am looking for recommendations on snow throwers/blowers. I want big heavy duty manly kind of one. No wimpy ones. With three feet of snow on the ground now... I need a snow blower that can handle the job, short of a buying a John Deere tractor.

    suggestions and recommendations very welcome. Budget $1,000 (that needs to include taxes of 8.7%)

    I plan to buy one ASAP after Christmas. Winter just offically began yesterday.. but we've had more snow here in the past 5 days than we usually get in 2 month's of winter. :(

  2. #2

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    Go as simple as you can. The more crap and features they more stuff to freeze up, corrode or rust.

    Best snow thrower I ever used was this GIGANTIC "Snow Chief" my dad bought used from a lawn mower repair guy up the street. Had a Tecumseh V-twin engine, about 30 horsepower. Self-propelled with 5 forward gears and two reverse and the impeller had a 3 speed gear box on it too. It had a 30 inch wide by 24 inch tall scoop on the front and could chew through 48 inches of snow in one pass. A slow pass but one pass.

    Did I need? No, not really, never got snow that bad. But we had it back in 1993-1997 when the Northeast and midatlantic states got hammered with consecutive seasonal snow fall totals in the 35-40 inch range. One 22 inch wet snow fall with a layer of ice and that thing paid for itself.

    Best part about it? Nothing electrical. Was a bitch to start without ether but once it ran, there was no stopping it. I used to strap wooden "mini-skis" to my feet and let it pull me along when doing my driveway,. my grandmother's driveway and two elderly neighbors.

    As far as what to get, anything from a reputable name will do. Husqvarna has some real nice and simple units. that's a Swedish company and if anyone knows anything about snow, it's those Scandinavians. But Sears usually has some nice stuff from the Craftsman line which is cheap. Lowes has John Deere and Troy-Bilt units too if you have one near you.

    I'd stay away from the Toros and such. They tend to not have the bruisers that you are looking for. Home Depot has the Ariens brand or whatever it is and that seems to be OK but I'd hear of alot of people having issues.
    You're just jealous 'cause the voices don't talk to you!

  3. #3

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    I'm with you, DB! Literally!

    I'm paying one of my daughters to shovel - which she likes - but she's getting tired of making $. Every time we need the driveway cleared, she has to do it.

    Anyway, I'll keep my eyes here to see what other recommendations you (we) get!

    Thanks in advance.
    "Wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then." Bob Seger

  4. #4

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    I have a Troy Bilt 7.5HP and it is pretty good. Good enough for home owner use. I think it was @ $ 800 from Lowes about 4 years ago.

    No snow here yet. But it was cold today.

    Scott
    I like speakers that are bigger than a small refrigerator but smaller than a big refrigerator:D

  5. #5

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    There aren't too many different snoblowers on the market anymore. Craftsman, Bolens, White, Yardman, Troy-built, and others are all built by MTD now. I've been shoping for a bigger one myself, and everywhere I go, all I see is the exact same machines in different colors, with different brand names and prices on them.

    I would recommend one with a Tecumseh motor though. Mines 16 years old, and still starts on the first pull every time. Too bad the rest of the machine is rusting so bad.

  6. #6

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    You have to go to a specality small engine type shop if you want a qualty snow blower not a Big chain store. But im afraid that a quality blower will be at minimum $1500.00 for a smaller model and go up from there. Look at Husquavarna, Stihl, Honda etc for a decent blower. Make sure you get one that has wheels not tracks and you dont have to replace shear pins on.



    REGARDS SNOW

  7. #7

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    Avoid MTD. I got a 5 horse that couldn't be cranked by hand and the electric starter quit the first year. I would recommend Toro or Ariens. I've got a 8 hp Ariens that is built like a tank. I've had it 10 years and it never lets me down (Massachusetts). The worst year I've had we got about 8 feet - don't know how that compares with what you get.
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  8. #8

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    Well, DB, no matter what model you chose, remember one thing:






















    Name:  SnowblowerRegular.jpg
Views: 211
Size:  28.2 KB
    MrBigBlueLight
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  9. #9

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    Damn I knew I shouldnt have subcribed to this thread. I honestly could have went the rest of the night without seeing that :D Here is one with a slightly different view.



    REGARDS SNOW
    Attached Images  
    Last edited by snow; 12-23-2008 at 12:32 AM.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by snow View Post
    Damn I knew I shouldnt have subcribed to this thread. I honestly could have went the rest of the night without seeing that :D Here is one with a slightly different view.



    REGARDS SNOW

  11. #11

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    Make sure to get one a size larger than you actually think you need. We've been hammered with snow here in IL too and I see so many people with smaller snow blowers and they are pretty much useless in heavy, slushy snow or large amounts of snow that had accumulated.

    The cost seems high initially but you'll get years of use out of it if you take care to do proper off season maintenance.

    Right now in IL snow blowers are like GOLD. We've had a LOT of snow already and about 6-8" more coming today and tomorrow. You can't find a snow blower anywhere.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

    Pass Aleph 30; Eastern Electric Mini Max; Adcom GDA600; MIT S3/Z Pc; SDA 1C; Squeezebox; Tubes add soul!

  12. #12

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    go for ariens 624 e i have a 5520 and it rocks(3 year ols moddle)
    http://www.ariens.com/products_snow/..._overview.aspx
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  13. #13

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    What size is your driveway and is it paved or gravel? What is your average snowfall? (per snowfall, not per year) and what is considered your average "Large" snowfall?

    I have a 3 car wide by 4 car deep driveway. It is cement. Our average snowfall is 2-4" about once per year we will get 10-12" or more in a single snowfall.

    I purchased a Toro 221q single stage blower and love it. It is perfect for what i need. It cost about the same as the smaller 2 stage blowers, but I have not wished I purchased a 2 stage since I got it. It is not overly huge, throws a ton of snow and cleans to the pavement. I have not had an issue with end of driveway snow yet. (as far as enough power to clear it)
    Mains.............Polk LSi15 (Cherry)
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  14. #14

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    Whatever you pick, you'd better be picking it up SOON. The forcast is another 6-12" by Christmas a.m., for the N.W. U.S.
    I refuse to argue with idiots, because people can't tell the DIFFERENCE!

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by McLoki View Post
    What size is your driveway and is it paved or gravel? What is your average snowfall? (per snowfall, not per year) and what is considered your average "Large" snowfall?

    I have a 3 car wide by 4 car deep driveway. It is cement. Our average snowfall is 2-4" about once per year we will get 10-12" or more in a single snowfall.

    I purchased a Toro 221q single stage blower and love it. It is perfect for what i need. It cost about the same as the smaller 2 stage blowers, but I have not wished I purchased a 2 stage since I got it. It is not overly huge, throws a ton of snow and cleans to the pavement. I have not had an issue with end of driveway snow yet. (as far as enough power to clear it)
    Well every place is sold out of snow throwers.. totally sold out. No telling when they will get more in. Someone said they might ship in an emergency shipment of them.. but who knows when.

    To give you a perspective on how much snow we have now.. it's officially 33 inches of snow on the ground. Average yearly total is 44 inches. So in 6 days we've almost reached our yearly winter total for snowfall.

    6 to 9 inches are expected on Wednesday. 2 to 4 inches on Christmas day. 1 - 2 inches each day after that till next Wednesday (New YEars eve). So with the 33 we already have on the ground now.. it's very possible we could get another 18" between now and New Years eve. Giving us a total of 51" in two weeks.. and winter's here last till mid March

    My drive way is gravel and it's about 30 feet long by 18 ft wide. I think in June i'll buy me a nice big snow thrower for next winter. ;)

  16. #16

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    My drive way is gravel and it's about 30 feet long by 18 ft wide. I think in June i'll buy me a nice big snow thrower for next winter.

    I bought a snow blower Mar 07 after a major snow in MD. Last year didn't use it one time Just so you know once you buy it Al it will ward off all snowfall

    Jim

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by jtgranby View Post
    My drive way is gravel and it's about 30 feet long by 18 ft wide. I think in June i'll buy me a nice big snow thrower for next winter.

    I bought a snow blower Mar 07 after a major snow in MD. Last year didn't use it one time Just so you know once you buy it Al it will ward off all snowfall

    Jim
    what's the old saying? oh yeah.. better to have it a not need it then to need it and not have it. ;)

  18. #18

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    Just get snowmobile then the snow blower won't be needed this year. :p
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

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  19. #19

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    Nothing wrong with Toro or Troy-Built, just make you buy the right size machine.

    Best bet is to just pay one of your local beaus, so you can eat popcorn and watch.:D:p;)
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  20. #20

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    I have a Toro and it has performed flawlessly for the last four years. Smaller than you are probably looking for but no problems with it whatsoever.
    "The secret of happiness is freedom. The secret of freedom is courage." Thucydides

  21. #21

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    With a gravel driveway - you HAVE to look at 2 stage machines. (which you were looking at anyway) A single stage will fill your front yard with rock. I don't think you need an overly large one. If your normal snowfall is light (and it sounds like it is) I would just pick up a craftsman at sears. (maybe you can order it on line for in store pickup) This will be very similar to many of the MTD machines. (White, Craftsman, Troybuilt, etc.)

    Toro and Airens are very well thought of for their 2 stage blowers, but they are pretty pricey. If you get alot of snow every year - it may be worth it, but if you typically only get 5-10 snowfalls per year (of 2-6" each) it may be overkill.

    My father just got a large sears blower (largest they had in the store) for about $920 on sale. It seems like a nice machine and the "quick shift" chute adjuster is awesome. It is well worth trying to get that feature (or one like it) on whatever you get.

    Michael
    Mains.............Polk LSi15 (Cherry)
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