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Snowblower part redux

Zeze

Lifer
Mar 4, 2011
10,202
452
126
I'm looking for a snowblower that can handle the following:

  • NJ winter - 2-3 feet of snow almost guaranteed every year. Upto 2-5x per winter.
  • My driveway can fit about 4 sedans, parked tightly together.
  • What's the recommended engine CC & 2 or 3 stage? They don't measure in horsepower anymore.
  • It should be able to clear nasty plow truck piles that pile up to 4-5'.
  • Price range?

I don't want to buy a $500 that's gonna struggle. But I don't think I need a monster one either seeing as the driveway is all I need to clear.
 
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sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
80,369
7,270
126
Two stage, 250cc or so, 26" ought to do. Electric starter a must.
 
Feb 4, 2009
26,693
7,225
136
I have a 20 year old two stage with a 22 or 24 inch blade, I want to say its 22 horsepower but I could be wrong.
I got it used 5 years ago from someone who bought it used 10 years before. What I'm saying is for the amount of time they get run buy a used one from someone who is retired and moving to Florida.
Mine even held up to the epic snowstorms two years ago.

* I live in MA
* your driveway sounds similar to mine, holds 3 or 4 cars
 
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Anubis

No Lifer
Aug 31, 2001
78,727
412
126
Where do you live? How much do you clear?
western NY
used to live in Maine

Current driveway is large enough to put 10-12 cars in, use it 4-6 times a year depending, when we were in Maine it cleared a 1/2 mile long driveway almost weekly
 

Zeze

Lifer
Mar 4, 2011
10,202
452
126
western NY
used to live in Maine

Current driveway is large enough to put 10-12 cars in, use it 4-6 times a year depending, when we were in Maine it cleared a 1/2 mile long driveway almost weekly
What's the cc/hp of your snowblower? (or just list full model)

And does that clear truck-plowed packed snow that go high as your chest?
 

gorcorps

aka Brandon
Jul 18, 2004
30,646
378
126
https://forums.anandtech.com/forums/the-garage.49/

I got a 2-stage 24" sno-tek. Built by Ariens but a bit cheaper. I've had it for a few years now and I really like it.

You want to get a 2-stage with a proper auger for the crap the plows dump back onto your driveway or right in front of it. A single stage paddle type one won't cut it.
 

Zeze

Lifer
Mar 4, 2011
10,202
452
126
https://forums.anandtech.com/forums/the-garage.49/

I got a 2-stage 24" sno-tek. Built by Ariens but a bit cheaper. I've had it for a few years now and I really like it.

You want to get a 2-stage with a proper auger for the crap the plows dump back onto your driveway or right in front of it. A single stage paddle type one won't cut it.
I'm not even thinking of single stage. The question is 2 stage or 3? Is 3 too much or pretty much needed for my requirement?
 
Feb 4, 2009
26,693
7,225
136
What's the cc/hp of your snowblower? (or just list full model)

And does that clear truck-plowed packed snow that go high as your chest?
I'm sure it does, you angle the blower up around 45 degrees, get the top to a manageable level then go forward at ramming speed.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
80,369
7,270
126
What's the cc/hp of your snowblower? (or just list full model)

And does that clear truck-plowed packed snow that go high as your chest?
Snow windraws is their name and two stage snow blowers can tackle them albeit it takes a few pass to do it properly.
 

Anubis

No Lifer
Aug 31, 2001
78,727
412
126
I'm sure it does, you angle the blower up around 45 degrees, get the top to a manageable level then go forward at ramming speed.
yea basically this. it works but only to a point, if its a block of ice it doesnt do anything. but if you get to it before it hardens you just attack it slowly and it works

i cant give you a model number because of how old it is but it is an Arines. its a 28" model from 20 or so years ago. maybe older TBH, i think its has a 9 HP motor
 
Feb 4, 2009
26,693
7,225
136
OP, when you get one either buy or order more sheer pins immediately. They almost never break but it sucks having one break and dealing with the blower at half power.
Keep them somewhere handy too.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
80,369
7,270
126
OP, when you get one either buy or order more sheer pins immediately. They almost never break but it sucks having one break and dealing with the blower at half power.
Keep them somewhere handy too.
I swear I saw this post in a different thread :awe:

My snowblower is 12 year old. I could not tell you whether it has a shear pin, though I imagine it has one.

Need to swap out the electric starter. The new one has been sitting on a shelf for two years :awe:
 

NetWareHead

THAT guy
Aug 10, 2002
5,859
154
106
The three stage snowblowers are a marketing gimmick IMO. You mean one of these Cub Cadet blowers? Try changing the shear pin in the rear most first stage blower with that impeller blocking you in front.

 
Feb 4, 2009
26,693
7,225
136
I swear I saw this post in a different thread :awe:

My snowblower is 12 year old. I could not tell you whether it has a shear pin, though I imagine it has one.

Need to swap out the electric starter. The new one has been sitting on a shelf for two years :awe:
One of mine broke during the epic winter two years ago. I couldn't find the same ones. Everything home depot sold was either too thick or not long enough to fit. I ended up with some from Lowes(?) they fit but continually broke because I needed a 24lb sheer bolt and these were 10 or 12. Sucked doing the driveway in 8 inch strips anything more and it would jam up because one auger didn't spin.
 

Gunbuster

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 1999
6,854
22
81
The three stage snowblowers are a marketing gimmick IMO.
I have that Club Cadet and yes changing the shear pin can be a pain. Clear any junk like sticks and branches away before it snows to save yourself the headache. Other than that it works like a champ.
 

NetWareHead

THAT guy
Aug 10, 2002
5,859
154
106
I'm looking for a snowblower that can handle the following:

  • NJ winter - 2-3 feet of snow almost guaranteed every year. Upto 2-5x per winter.
  • My driveway can fit about 4 sedans, parked tightly together.
  • What's the recommended engine CC & 2 or 3 stage? They don't measure in horsepower anymore.
  • It should be able to clear nasty plow truck piles that pile up to 4-5'.
  • Price range?

I don't want to buy a $500 that's gonna struggle. But I don't think I need a monster one either seeing as the driveway is all I need to clear.
IMO, a 24 inch snowblower will fit the bill just fine. You are going to have to do some work on the snow piles in front of the driveway from the plows. Unless you have some good slope to your driveway where you would need the extra traction, stay away from track models and stick to wheeled models.

My favorite brand are the Honda snowblowers mainly because of the features, ease of use and rock solid commercial grade engine. You will pay a premium for this snowblower generally recognized as the cream of the cop when it comes to snowblowers. If Honda is too rich then Ariens makes a fine snowblower too.
 

Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
56,725
7,687
126
www.uovalor.com
I have a 2 stage 24" Ariens, works fine for our winters here, though we don't really get as much snow as we used to, so it's rare I have to do more than a foot at once. Though I usually shovel all the snow to one side then do a couple passes to throw it into the yard as it's just faster if there's not lot of snow.
 

WilliamM2

Golden Member
Jun 14, 2012
1,701
78
91
I use an Ariens Compact 22" with a 169cc 6hp Subaru engine. I wanted a bigger one, but by January when the old one finally became un-repairable, the stores are always down to a small selection, or completely sold out. I figured I'd buy a bigger one the next year when they were back in stock, but no need, and the light weight of this compared to my older ones makes it much easier to move around in the snow. Last year I had rotator cuff surgery in the winter, so my 100 lb wife had to do the snow removal, she had no issue with it. Not sure how a bigger one would have went.

We get tons of snow in Northern Michigan, I use it 5 to 10 times a week. Driveway is 130' long and 35' wide at the top. This thing blows through it like you wouldn't believe, throws the snow at least 40'. Took me 40 minutes to clear my driveway and the neighbors driveway this morning (6 inches of snow). It's been running strong for 8 years now.

It has electric start, but I have never used it other than testing it when it was new. It always starts halfway through the first pull. Takes longer to get out the cord to plug it in.
 

snoopy7548

Diamond Member
Jan 1, 2005
5,556
2,435
136
Another Ariens owner here. Deluxe 24", bought a few years ago after I had to shovel another 3'+ dump of snow and finally said enough is enough. I paid ~$1k (delivered from a local Ariens dealer) and it has been worth every penny. The zero-turn feature is awesome as hell and it powers through the mountain at the end of my driveway without any problems. Like William, I never use the electric start.

IMO, it goes Honda (though you will pay a premium) > Ariens >>>>>>> everything else. Most of the other blowers I see that are "comparable" to Ariens have plastic where there should be metal, like the chute, and awkward controls.
 

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