Snow Blowers Frequently Asked Questions
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What are some considerations when selecting a snow blower?
When selecting a snow blower, there are several considerations to keep in mind, including:
SNOWFALL AND FREQUENCY: The amount of snowfall and how often it occurs in your area will determine the size and power of the snow blower you need.
AREA TO BE CLEARED: The area you need to clear will determine the width of the snow blower needed. A larger area will require a wider clearing path. One way to think about the the area is to consider how many cars can fit in your driveway and the width of the blower.
TYPE OF SNOW: Wet and heavy snow requires more power than light and fluffy snow. Consider the type of snow you typically get in your area when choosing a snow blower.
SURFACE: 1-Stage snow blowers work best on paved or hard surfaces, whereas 2 and 3 stage snow blowers can easily handle graveled areas.
TERRAIN: If you have a hilly or uneven terrain, you may need a snow blower with larger wheels or tracks for better traction.
FUEL TYPE: Snow blowers can be powered by gas, electric, or battery. Consider which type of fuel is most convenient for you.
FEATURES: Some snow blowers have heated grips, headlights, and power steering. Consider which features are best for you.
What is the difference between single stage and two stage snow blower?
A single-stage snow blower is the most basic kind, where the auger paddle pulls snow into the machine and throws it out of the chute. There are also more advanced stages designed to handle more snow.
A 2 stage snow blower pulls snow into the machine and feeds it into an impeller to break it up more efficiently before throwing it out of the discharge chute.
What is the difference between a snow blower and snow thrower?
The terms "snow blower" and "snow thrower" are often used interchangeably, but technically, there is a difference between the two.
A snow blower uses an impeller to blow snow out of a chute, usually in a single stage. It's purpose is to clear heavy snowfall on hard surfaces like driveways and sidewalks. Snow blowers can be gas or electric-powered.
A snow thrower is a machine that uses an auger to scoop up snow and throw it out of a chute. It's purpose is to clear lighter snowfalls from smaller areas. Snow throwers are usually electric-powered and are less powerful than snow blowers.
Snow blowers are more powerful and can handle larger areas and heavier snowfalls, while snow throwers are best for lighter snowfalls and smaller areas. However, the terms are often used interchangeably, and some machines may be referred to as both a snow blower and a snow thrower.
Can you use a snow blower on a gravel driveaway?
Yes, you can use a snow blower on a gravel driveway, but take some precautions to avoid damaging the blower or throwing rocks or gravel.
First, adjust the height of the snow blower skid shoes so they are higher than the gravel surface. Raising the shoes will lessen the chance of scooping up rocks or gravel and throwing them out with the snow.
Second, use a snow blower with large tires or tracks, as they can better navigate over the uneven surface of the gravel driveway.
Third, go slow to prevent the blower from bouncing around on the gravel. A slow pace will also give you better control over the blower and help lessen the chance of damage to the blower or the driveway.
Finally, be aware that using a snow blower on a gravel driveway can create a lot of dust, so it's a good idea to wear a dust mask or respirator to protect your lungs.
Can a snow blower handle wet snow?
Yes, a snow blower can handle wet snow, but the process will be harder than removing light and fluffy snow. Wet snow is often heavier and can clog the snow blower's chute.
To handle wet snow, you should look for a snow blower with a powerful engine and auger that can break up the snow efficiently. Some models include features like power steering or an anti-clogging mechanism that can make clearing wet snow easier.
Engine technologies like EGOV (electronic governing) can sense heavy, wet snow and deliver consistent power.
When using a snow blower on wet snow, take it slow and steady. Pushing the machine too hard can cause it to clog and require clearing the chute.
What are some additional features to look for when considering a snow blower?
Some additional features to consider are:
Electric push-start buttons eliminate the pull-start and deliver more reliable starts. Some snow blowers, including the CRAFTSMAN® Performance 26 will also use cordless battery systems to start the engine.
Other features worth considering are built-in lights for visibility in low-light conditions and heated handles for added comfort during cold conditions.