Snowblowers

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sawhorse
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Snowblowers

Post by sawhorse » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:29 am

This thread is an offshoot of my other thread about my aging parents insisting on clearing their own snow. The best I can do without destroying their pride, I think, is to buy them a new snowblower.

They have an old snowblower, but it doesn't work with heavy wet snow and is clumsy and difficult to maneuver, so they do most of the snow clearance on their rather long driveway manually.

What would you recommend for the following situation?

*Can handle all types of snow

*Can be used and maneuvered easily by a very small (under 5 feet and small framed) female senior citizen

*Not too big as there is little space left in their garage

Money isn't an issue unless we're talking several thousand dollars.

Thanks!

lazydavid
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by lazydavid » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:41 am

How much snow at a time? That's the biggest thing. My standard recommendation is Toro for a single-stage, or Ariens for a two-stage.

Jamieson22
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Jamieson22 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:45 am

This:
https://www.toro.com/en/homeowner/snow- ... -qze-38744

Electric start, chute direction controlled by a slider on the handle, and only weights 91lbs. Can handle just about any snowfall and my current one has started with 1 pull at the start of each of the last 5 seasons.

dsmclone
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by dsmclone » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:47 am

I have a craftsman two stage that is about 15 years old. During this time I've never thought to myself 'I wish I would have gotten the smaller/less powerful one". The right handle propels it and the left handle spins the blade. Height may be an issue though, 5ft tall is pretty short.

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RickBoglehead
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by RickBoglehead » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:49 am

Here's your problem, besides buying something for someone that isn't going to use it...

A 2-stage is the only design that's going to throw heavy wet snow.

A 2-stage is big. And heavy. A good one will have both wheels able to be drive wheels, with multiple speeds, that the operator selects. These are dangerous machines, i.e. they can pull someone forward who doesn't let go of the drive controls, they can chew up anything in their path.

And, they require maintenance, at least annually, draining out the excess gas, putting fresh gas in, cleaning air filter (if equipped with one).

Putting gas in can be dangerous - often an overflow can land on a hot engine.

OP - there is no way in hades I would buy such a machine for my 84 year old mother. My father in-law used one until he couldn't safely anymore and the neighbor plowed it for him.

Don't do this.
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MathWizard
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by MathWizard » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:49 am

Single stage electric start, I don’t even get out2 stage out anymore. My wife won’t use it, and it wears me out even though it is self propelled.


If you go with a 2 stage, definitely electric start, and consider tracks, with independent power controls. Expensive,but a breeze to steer and walks though about anything. My brother has one, but I get less snow, and didn’t want to spend over a thousand on a snowblower.

LawEgr1
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by LawEgr1 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:54 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:49 am
Here's your problem, besides buying something for someone that isn't going to use it...

A 2-stage is the only design that's going to throw heavy wet snow.

A 2-stage is big. And heavy. A good one will have both wheels able to be drive wheels, with multiple speeds, that the operator selects. These are dangerous machines, i.e. they can pull someone forward who doesn't let go of the drive controls, they can chew up anything in their path.

And, they require maintenance, at least annually, draining out the excess gas, putting fresh gas in, cleaning air filter (if equipped with one).

Putting gas in can be dangerous - often an overflow can land on a hot engine.

OP - there is no way in hades I would buy such a machine for my 84 year old mother. My father in-law used one until he couldn't safely anymore and the neighbor plowed it for him.

Don't do this.
+1

Don't ignore this advice. As much as modern technology has been optimized, snowblowers still require TLC and often confuse those not used to such machines when starting up and requiring a choke.

bob60014
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by bob60014 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:56 am

My mom and dad had a Troybilt 2410 self propelled and electric start, though they probably should have had a larger unit, used up in Minocqua Wi where numerous, large snowfalls are common. They had a long driveway and this worked well for both of them, though mom didn't use it often.

https://www.troybilt.com/equipment/troy ... 1bs6bn2711

Katietsu
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Katietsu » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:02 am

I wonder if there is a good product for this. Light and maneuverable for “aging parents” but able to handle heavy snow seems challenging. My older relatives have a snowblower. As the aged they quit using it because it was too hard to handle. So they moved to a really big shovel. A few years later, it was a mid sized shovel.

Eventually, we pretty much gave an ultimatum as we said that, for heavy snowfalls, we had spoken to a plow guy. And that either they could make their own arrangements or we would simply be paying for and sending someone. I think we threw in a bit of guilt about how stressful it was for us. I also emailed a Mayo Clinic article about how dangerous it was somewhere along in the months before.

They found someone on their own who comes on request. I would make the requests more frequently if I were making the call. But at least the most dangerous (heavy, deep) situations are off the table.

Good luck.

GCD
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by GCD » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:08 am

sawhorse wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:29 am
*Can handle all types of snow

*Can be used and maneuvered easily by a very small (under 5 feet and small framed) female senior citizen

*Not too big as there is little space left in their garage
In my experience, these are mutually exclusive requirements. Tiny old people can't run powerful things. Powerful things are usually big.

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lthenderson
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by lthenderson » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:09 am

I have a 2 stage Cub Cadet snowblower that has served me well the last seven or eight years I've had it with all types of snow. It has electric start and independent power to each wheel so you can turn it by just squeezing a finger lever. About the only place it doesn't meet your requirements would be size because it takes up two feet by four feet of space.

But like others mentioned above, it isn't without work because it does take annual maintenance to keep it in running order. I spend an hour a year draining and refilling the oil, draining the gas, cleaning the air filter and adjusting the wear skids to preserve the metal shroud up front.

pwill112
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by pwill112 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:18 am

The exertion in the cold weather can be a setup for heart attacks in older people. It's not one or the other but both factors at play at the same time.

MoRetired
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by MoRetired » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:27 am

Snowblowers can be dangerous hard-to-handle machines for older and less-than-robust users. My wife and I are retired. We cleared our driveway yesterday by hand after a four inch snowfall. It took less than an hour. That's about our limit. If we get more snow than that, we call in a snow-removal service. Neither one of us is up to wrestling with a large snowblower.

open_circuit
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by open_circuit » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:31 am

I have an electric 15A snow blower. I do not find it particularly heavy or hard to maneuver, but I am also not elderly. It has handled up to ~7 inches of wet spring snow admirably, although I do often take less than full-width passes late season when the snow is wet and heavy. I can't comment on any non-electric models. I especially like that there is basically no maintenance because it is a corded electric model. when not in use, the handles can collapse so that it is roughly the same size as a drop spreader.

bloom2708
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by bloom2708 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:56 am

pwill112 wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:18 am
The exertion in the cold weather can be a setup for heart attacks in older people. It's not one or the other but both factors at play at the same time.
The exertion of moving a 2 stage (electric start) snowblower is less than shoveling. Shoveling is the risk. The weight of each scoop and the twisting/thrust needed to throw the snow over the side piles.

A mid-sized 2 stage is not heavy. They almost all come with plug-in electric start. Plug in the cord. Push the button. Unplug the cord.

My dad runs the snowblower, my mom uses a Dakota Sno Blade (no lifting) to wind row and do the edges and pick up missed/overflow snow.

Snowblowers have reverse, so you can back them up. There is an element of effort when the snow is deep or packed.

I would say the lower risk for heart attack would be walking behind a snowblower. I am not a doctor, but I do own a mid sized 2 stage snowblower. My 1997 MTD is still running strong. Bought new with our first house in 1997.
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Epsilon Delta
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Epsilon Delta » Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:26 pm

sawhorse wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:29 am
Tiny old people can't run powerful things. Powerful things are usually big.
Most big powerful things are run using little tiny joysticks.

It's the not very big things that require the most manual effort.

A bobcat would take less effort than any walk-behind snowblowers, but it won't fit in the garage.
On second thought -- it won't fit in the garage with the car.
On third thought -- it will fit in the garage with the car, but not if you want to use the car again.
Last edited by Epsilon Delta on Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Winston19
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Winston19 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:42 pm

Check out an EGO electric anowblower. It will have about the same power as a single stage gas blower, it folds for storage, and does not require the same maintenance as a gas blower. I am very happy with mine and we just had one of the top 10 snowiest months ever in Minnesota.

https://egopowerplus.com/snow-blower/

Yooper
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Yooper » Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:01 pm

For what it's worth, I got a Toro Power Max 724 OE a few years ago for my father (in his 80's) and he loves it. Very light, very maneuverable, electric start (in addition to pull start), easy to handle, tackles all kinds of snow well. He's not in the greatest health, and has a pacemaker, but he loves getting out to use it. As for annual maintenance, if you don't feel like doing it simply pay a local small engine shop to come pick it up each summer and give it a going over.

LaurieAnnaT
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by LaurieAnnaT » Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:24 pm

Jamieson22 wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:45 am
This:
https://www.toro.com/en/homeowner/snow- ... -qze-38744

Electric start, chute direction controlled by a slider on the handle, and only weights 91lbs. Can handle just about any snowfall and my current one has started with 1 pull at the start of each of the last 5 seasons.
:thumbsup

That's exactly what I'm going to do for next winter.

I have an old Toro single stage snowblower which I used to use when my husband was out of town for work. Yes, I could use it in heavy snow. You just had to go slower and take smaller swaths. It sure beat trying to shovel heavy snow by hand!

(My sweetie passed away last spring. I've had help with my driveway this year, but it's been a learning process. I've discovered I prefer to do the job I do myself, I just need a reliable snowblower I can handle. I'm going to give my husband's 2-stage snowblower to a friend and buy that Toro single stage snowblower.)

Globalviewer58
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Globalviewer58 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:29 pm

Before you invest in another snowblower you may benefit by contacting the local snow removal companies to ask about clearing when snow depth is greater than 4 inches (or whatever is beyond the single stage equipment rating they have). Our snow removal company only comes for depth greater than 6 inches and they have contacted me when questionable weight so we can discuss. Works fine for both of us and I have no problems being down the list when the heavy, deep snow falls.

The 2-stage we own is WAAAY beyond what my wife can handle and she is a sturdy 5’ 5”, 140 pound ball of fire. Her grip strength is poor due to arthritis in hands and she has weak mechanical aptitude/ skills so any routine maintenance or repair is going to require my participation.

OldBallCoach
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by OldBallCoach » Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:35 pm

We have a Honda 720 series...my wife says if you look at it strong it will start and its been great for the 80-100 inches of snow we get a year...simple to run, and built well...4 stroke so go gas mix issues...cheers!!

IMO
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by IMO » Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:36 pm

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:49 am
Here's your problem, besides buying something for someone that isn't going to use it...

A 2-stage is the only design that's going to throw heavy wet snow.

A 2-stage is big. And heavy. A good one will have both wheels able to be drive wheels, with multiple speeds, that the operator selects. These are dangerous machines, i.e. they can pull someone forward who doesn't let go of the drive controls, they can chew up anything in their path.

And, they require maintenance, at least annually, draining out the excess gas, putting fresh gas in, cleaning air filter (if equipped with one).

Putting gas in can be dangerous - often an overflow can land on a hot engine.

OP - there is no way in hades I would buy such a machine for my 84 year old mother. My father in-law used one until he couldn't safely anymore and the neighbor plowed it for him.

Don't do this.
Take the advice of this post on all aspects. If in response, you think "okay, we'll go small instead." if you try to a small single stage and use it on wet snow, it will keep clogging over and over again. A small one could work for small snow amounts and drier snow so it's not useless and could help with the task on those days.

And there is another thought to consider on the above post. Is there perhaps a neighbor or teenage kid neighbor that would do the snowplowing for your elderly parents? Sure they could pay the person, but they might look at it differently if they were "helping out" a teenage make some extra money. In that case, having an big 2-stage could be helpful as it makes much quicker work for whomever is doing the work.

Also just the process of going to the neighbors and asking who is doing the snow clearing for them, if there any interest in someone doing the work, and what your concerns are with your parents, a neighbor might just help out (especially if you said the neighbor could use the big 2 stage for their snow also). I myself know who's in my immediate area who is elderly/disabled, and just help out cause it's the right thing to do. I hope that when I get to that point in life, karma will go my way.

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whodidntante
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by whodidntante » Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:40 pm

I find my 24" two stage easy to handle compared to shoveling several inches of snow. But I get the concern. There are battery powered two stage snowblowers now. Those might be lighter and easier to handle. Also, the maintenance would be easier and the unit would be easier to operate. There is no oil to change, no choke, no engine warm up, no air filter to change, etc.

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Nestegg_User
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Nestegg_User » Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:11 pm

I have to laugh at the idea of a single stage snowblower....

Last storms dumped two and a half FEET of snow followed by another dumping eight to nine inches. We had gotten a Cub Cadet two stage snowblower... the higher grade with more powerful engine and ability to disengage the tranny and more easily move the snowblower around. [Use 5 W synthetic oil and ALWAYS use ethanol-free gas ( " the good stuff", which is also more expensive) and always winterize after season.]

It's large, powerful enough to clear... but must take time to clear the hundreds of feet (600+) of drive to get to the road ( that's the problem of having some acreage)... before we had the snowblower it took days to shovel out from a similar storm but with the blower and taking it right it took a couple of hours and a few gallons of gas. I certainly wouldn't trust that most elderly could handle the unit as, even though it's more maneuverable than most, there's still a LOT of muscle needed to clear that much snow. (For those around here, it can take days at times for someone to get around to plowing you out... mostly using large Cats, very large commercial trucks with blades, or tractors with blades; and they don't come around cheaply. ) Forget about any single stage, especially an electic ( got an ultra heavy duty extension cord that long? :D ); that would be a joke.

best bet is a local that you can keep on retainer to keep them safe and cleared.
Last edited by Nestegg_User on Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:22 pm, edited 3 times in total.

jharkin
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by jharkin » Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:11 pm

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:49 am
Here's your problem, besides buying something for someone that isn't going to use it...

A 2-stage is the only design that's going to throw heavy wet snow.

A 2-stage is big. And heavy. A good one will have both wheels able to be drive wheels, with multiple speeds, that the operator selects. These are dangerous machines, i.e. they can pull someone forward who doesn't let go of the drive controls, they can chew up anything in their path.

And, they require maintenance, at least annually, draining out the excess gas, putting fresh gas in, cleaning air filter (if equipped with one).

Putting gas in can be dangerous - often an overflow can land on a hot engine.

OP - there is no way in hades I would buy such a machine for my 84 year old mother. My father in-law used one until he couldn't safely anymore and the neighbor plowed it for him.

Don't do this.

+1 Every time a thread like this comes up, there are people that insist their little battery powered single stage toy can "handle any snow"

These people obviously do not live in New England or the upper Midwest.

This morning I work up to 15 inches of snow as dense as wet concrete. The berm at the end of the driveway left by the plows was 3 feet deep. My 24inch Ariens 2 stage gas blower really struggled to get though it.. You have to lock the axle (more traction but hard to turn), move forward on the slowest speed, break it up, back up, inch forward again. All while being careful not to bog it down and stall. Its like breaking through an iceberg.

If I had the space to store it I would get an even larger machine (the Ariens 28" has a much larger engine with a lot more power). I would not expect nor ask my elderly parents to operate this thing.

jharkin
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by jharkin » Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:18 pm

Nestegg_User wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:11 pm
ALWAYS use methanol-free gas
FYI, no consumer gasoline sold anywhere in this country has Methanol in it. Only Indy cars and Top Full/funny car dragsters burn methanol based fuels.

If its ehtanol you are worrying about... DONT. Ethanol is actually a good thing for winter use power equipment - its the active ingredient in Drygas/IsoHeet and helps ensure that you dont get icing in the fuel lines.

LaurieAnnaT
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by LaurieAnnaT » Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:28 pm

Based on the original post, a 2-stage snowblower is out of the question - small wife, limited storage space.

The OP stated that his elderly parents are currently clearing their rather long driveway manually. Anything an elderly couple can do manually, a well built single stage snowblower can also do.

Is there a neighbor with a single stage snowblower which your mother could try, to see if she could handle such a snowblower?

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GoldStar
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by GoldStar » Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:39 pm

As others have stated your requirements are somewhat at odds with eachother.

- If you really mean "All types of Snow" like a 18" snowstorm (or more) of heavy-wet-stuff you need a 2-stage snow-blower (I like Ariens - all the better models now come standard with electric start which is important for aging folk; also handwarmers and headlights are also standard on better models now)
- If you have a two stage snow-blower it will be larger and heaving than a single stage - but will get the job done. Can your folks handle these? Hard to say.
- If you go with single-stage - it won't matter if your folks can maneuver it or not - it won't be strong enough to properly clear the snow without getting clogged (especially a wet/heavy/slushy-snow) - it will clog and jam and fail to run (no one in my area in New England have them - they are considered a joke if you have real snow-storms).

mrc
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by mrc » Mon Mar 04, 2019 3:30 pm

Instead of buying them a snow blower, ask them why they want to keep shoveling on their own. In your OP, you said:

after loads of nagging
they reluctantly agreed
brushed me off
I think they feel

Tell them you are worried, offer to help any way you can. Then step back and wait for them to ask.

All the other alternatives from hiring someone (without telling them especially), or buying them a blower will not end as well as you all deserve.
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GCD
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by GCD » Mon Mar 04, 2019 3:53 pm

Epsilon Delta wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:26 pm
sawhorse wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:29 am
Tiny old people can't run powerful things. Powerful things are usually big.
Most big powerful things are run using little tiny joysticks.
Well of course. But I'm talking snowblowers, chainsaws, etc. Show me a snowblower run on a joystick. You have to wrestle those things around.

However, based on some posts by people who live in snowy climates and profess to be satisfied with their electric snowblowers, I may be wrong!

Who'd ever have thought electric would come this far? Personally I find it unbelievable that an electric snowblower could handle a couple feet depth of wet heavy snow. Perhaps "handle" is in the eye of the beholder.

There is probably an equipment rental place nearby. Is there any chance you would be near your parents for the next big snowfall? You could rent an electric and see if the electric advocates are right.

skeptical
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by skeptical » Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:18 pm

LawEgr1 wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:54 am
RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:49 am
Here's your problem, besides buying something for someone that isn't going to use it...

A 2-stage is the only design that's going to throw heavy wet snow.

A 2-stage is big. And heavy. A good one will have both wheels able to be drive wheels, with multiple speeds, that the operator selects. These are dangerous machines, i.e. they can pull someone forward who doesn't let go of the drive controls, they can chew up anything in their path.

And, they require maintenance, at least annually, draining out the excess gas, putting fresh gas in, cleaning air filter (if equipped with one).

Putting gas in can be dangerous - often an overflow can land on a hot engine.

OP - there is no way in hades I would buy such a machine for my 84 year old mother. My father in-law used one until he couldn't safely anymore and the neighbor plowed it for him.

Don't do this.
+1

Don't ignore this advice. As much as modern technology has been optimized, snowblowers still require TLC and often confuse those not used to such machines when starting up and requiring a choke.
+2

I have a two stage Arien "self propelled" with electric starter. It is a great machine, but still takes quite a bit of muscle to maneuver especially when turning and going up down inclines and adjusting the chute, and the electric start can take patience, fiddling, and can a bit scary to use.

NoblesvilleIN
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by NoblesvilleIN » Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:21 pm

What about a different take on snowblowers? With a longer drive, do your parents have a yard large enough that they also have a riding lawn mower or garden tractor? Could that riding lawn mower have a front mount snowblower attachment available? That way, there is one less engine to maintain; its an engine that gets run more often and would be more likely to start in the winter; it would be a piece of equipment that they were already familiar with. After mowing ends in the fall, you could remove the mower deck and attach the snowblower and then reverse the process in the spring. You may have to get tire chains for it as well.

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Abel
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Abel » Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:51 pm

Another vote for the EGO battery powered snowblower.

I've been using an Ariens 6HP in Boston suburbs for 25+ years and got the EGO from a friend. I had thought single-stage was a toy. Yes the EGO is very lightweight (mostly a real plus) and you do need to more aggressively push it into the snow, like this morning with 10" heavy spring snow. That was a lot to go thru, especially the plowed ridge by the street.

But the plusses are overwhelming - no gas, no oil, no choke, no levers, no engine noise, no pulling to start. Batteries charge in about 30 minutes each (there are two). Just so much easier all around.

The Wizard
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by The Wizard » Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:17 pm

I agree with Rick.
Age 80+ isn't the time to get started with a hefty two-stage Ariens snowblower.
Sorry...
Attempted new signature...

Cycle
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Cycle » Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:38 pm

Shovel
Never look back unless you are planning to go that way

sport
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by sport » Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:03 pm

We get a lot of snow in my area. In the past, I found that I could hire a plow service for about $200/year. In my present home, the HOA takes care of it. It is just not worth struggling with machinery or shoveling.

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F150HD
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by F150HD » Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:07 pm

jharkin wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:18 pm
Nestegg_User wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:11 pm
ALWAYS use methanol-free gas
FYI, no consumer gasoline sold anywhere in this country has Methanol in it. Only Indy cars and Top Full/funny car dragsters burn methanol based fuels.

If its ehtanol you are worrying about... DONT. Ethanol is actually a good thing for winter use power equipment - its the active ingredient in Drygas/IsoHeet and helps ensure that you dont get icing in the fuel lines.
HAHAHA....ok, that was funny
Long is the way and hard, that out of Hell leads up to light.

whomever
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by whomever » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:20 am

" Ethanol is ... the active ingredient in ... DryGas/IsoHeet ..."

That conflicted with my memory of what's in gas driers, so I picked Isoheet at random and looked up the MSDS:

https://www.servicechamp.com/images/28202msds.pdf

which says it's 99% isopropanol, AKA isopropyl alcohol.

The maker of the trademarked product 'Drygas' makes two kinds. One is isopropyl:

https://www.cristycorp.com/products/iso ... er-remover

I couldn't find an MSDS for the other, but here is an analysis from the Connecticut government:

https://web.archive.org/web/20181025190 ... s/b832.pdf

which says it is 99% methanol, and also says: "The brands of 19 gas line antifreeze products tested and the type and percentage of alcohol found are in Table 1. Fourteen contained only methyl alcohol, four only isopropyl alcohol, and one a mixture of methyl alcohol and isopropyl alcohol". So ethanol seems to be an uncommon ingredient in gas driers.

brianH
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by brianH » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:20 am

jharkin wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:11 pm

+1 Every time a thread like this comes up, there are people that insist their little battery powered single stage toy can "handle any snow"

These people obviously do not live in New England or the upper Midwest.
That's true, but to be fair, the opposite case happens frequently as well: For much of the mid-Atlantic, maybe even Chicago, a nice single stage or hybrid like the Toro Snowmaster is likely all that's needed. However, the chorus seems to be "buy the biggest, baddest, multi-stage, monster snowblower you can afford", which, frankly, for those areas, is overkill. For snow amounts that happen maybe 5% or less of the time, people are stuck with a unwieldy, slow beast that takes up a ton of storage space (not to mention the initial $ outlay.)

The hardcore snowblower aficionados typically have both a monster multi-stage and a single stage to use the best tool for the job. The key is to know your area and typical snowfalls when considering models.

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queso
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by queso » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:50 am

brianH wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:20 am
"buy the biggest, baddest, multi-stage, monster snowblower you can afford
Amen! As much as I like my old two stage Craftsman I will not cry one bit when it finally dies. I want the Ariens or the Honda with tank tracks next. :beer

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metalworking
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by metalworking » Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:40 pm

Love our EGO and it has been used a lot this year.

pochax
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by pochax » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:26 pm

+4 for the EGO snowblower - got the one with two 5000 mAh batteries and it lasts ~20-30 minutes at full power. i think it is perfect for a senior because:
1) light, fairly quiet, and maneuverable
2) maintenance-free (just recharge batteries - indoors preferably since keeping charge is harder in the cold)
3) wire-free
4) has LED lights for night use
5) no gas needed, no fumes, no oil, no crank-starting

some possible downsides:
- not self-propelling, so in heavy snow you will need strength to push through it
- can get easily clogged with wet snow >6" but fairly easy to unclog

unstartable
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by unstartable » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:35 pm

Epsilon Delta wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:26 pm
sawhorse wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:29 am
Tiny old people can't run powerful things. Powerful things are usually big.
Most big powerful things are run using little tiny joysticks.

It's the not very big things that require the most manual effort.

A bobcat would take less effort than any walk-behind snowblowers, but it won't fit in the garage.
On second thought -- it won't fit in the garage with the car.
On third thought -- it will fit in the garage with the car, but not if you want to use the car again.
Maybe the people who operate them are the problem, but I've seen more Bobcats than anything else get stuck removing snow.

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Epsilon Delta
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Epsilon Delta » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:56 pm

unstartable wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:35 pm
Maybe the people who operate them are the problem, but I've seen more Bobcats than anything else get stuck removing snow.
Well you should have tracks rather than bare tires.

It might be the operators, but it's probably when and where they are used. They are usually tackling jobs that you could not attempt in a pickup. If you put on a snowblower and drive in a straight line it's hard to get stuck.

Round here they are either used in tight space or after big storms. In tight spaces they are not so much stuck as worried about taking out the surrounding buildings. After big storms the guys in the pickups take a look at the pile and say they are not going anywhere near that so out come the bobcats, front end loader, etc.

Smoke
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Re: Snowblowers

Post by Smoke » Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:05 pm

Get whatever YOU want in a snowblower, you will wind up using it anyway.
After your parents can't or won't, You will be clearing their driveway for them, or take it back for your own use.
Arguing for the sake of arguing is something I am not going to engage in.

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