Looking to clear that driveway snow? Then you are perhaps on the lookout for an effective snow blower. They come in different shapes and sizes. Here’s a guide about what to look for, when you have chosen a gas powered variant.

Choosing gas powered snow blowers – what to look for

Effectiveness: Naturally, a snow blower should be effective and work out of the box. Make sure to read buyer reviews about the effectiveness of the blower. Effectiveness is a combination of power, ergonomics, durability and clearing width.

One-stage or two-stage: On a single-stage snow blower, an auger (the blades in front of the blower) will throw the snow straight through a discharge chute. … On two-stage snow throwers the blades will collects the snow and a separate fan will then discharge the snow through a chute. This process throws the snow faster and farther away. Two-stage blowers are more effective and more expensive, but they are also less compact.

Clearing width / depth: Look for product specs in terms of width. The effectiveness of the snow blower makes the clearing dimensions important. In general, the bigger, the better. But a smaller clearing width design is also more compact. Make sure you need the clearing width the blower is designed for.

Electric start / Manual start: Most gas powered snow blowers have both an electric and manual start option, allowing you to choose one over the other, or have one in terms of backup. Read reviews to learn about what works best for you.

Wheels and tire size / pneumatic: Depending on your terrain, you might need a snow blower with pneumatic tires of a good size. Plastic wheels will work for some driveway and most home uses, but if the blower is to be driven around and used frequently, pneumatic tires are preferred by most buyers.

Drive system: For frequent use, you will appreciate a blower with multiple different gears for moving backwards and forwards. Most snow blowers have an assisted drive system that propels the snow blower forward. Make sure it pulls sufficiently (read reviews).

Chute: All snow blowers have a chute that throws away the cleared snow. Depending on the blower, the throw angle and operation of the angle differs. Read reviews to learn about how the chute operates, and whether it works like you would prefer. Make sure that the neighbors won’t mind when most blowers throw the snow 30 feet away!

Ergonomics: Design features such as the drive handle and chute operation will greatly effect the comfort of using the blower. Blowing snow for hours can be quite a daunting task, so look for negative user reviews that could reveal poor ergonomics.

Build quality: A snow blower will endure many adverse, cold conditions and a frequent use over the years. A heavy frame construction and high quality build will matter in the long run. Look at negative user reviews for comments on build quality and if anything tends to break on the blower.

Safety features: Check for important safety features like auto-stop.

Warranty: Check manufacturer warranty before you buy. Snow blowers have many moving parts (mechanics!) that can break. Some blowers offer a 2 year warranty

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