Joe

Snow Blower

Rate this topic

34 posts in this topic

Yikes, talking about snowblowers when it's 88 degrees out. Well, winter is coming and it's a necessary discussion. Ariens makes some very good models, however, the big box stores tend to carry their low-end products. My suggestion is to pick the snowblower  you think  you need and then buy the next bigger size. The reason is that a larger machine that is under-stressed will last longer and perform better than a smaller machine that is pushed to its limits every time. That, and the uncomfortable fact that we WILL encounter a storm that dumps 2-3 feet at some point during ownership of the snowblower. I see neighbors with tiny 6hp machines struggling to clear their driveways and my Ariens is throwing snow like a snow making machine on a ski slope. The size of your driveway is also an important factor in your decision, as is whether you can clear your front walk with the blower of if you have to manually shovel it. I bought an Ariens 824 and while it was better than shoveling, even 8" of snow would leave me sweat-soaked and exhausted. I went with a 13HP beast and now laugh at 8" snow storms. Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a 12 year old Toro 826.   Spends Oct thru April outside under a tarp near a 20A outlet.   They do take up some space. We get 2 ft heavy wet snow or maybe 3-4ft drifted at times and it will do it, eventually.  

My son got an Ariens 824 cheap from a box store.  Tore up belts first time he ran it.   After he sorted out whatever they screwed up it’s been great.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, JimW said:

Have a 12 year old Toro 826.   Spends Oct thru April outside under a tarp near a 20A outlet.   They do take up some space. We get 2 ft heavy wet snow or maybe 3-4ft drifted at times and it will do it, eventually.  

My son got an Ariens 824 cheap from a box store.  Tore up belts first time he ran it.   After he sorted out whatever they screwed up it’s been great.  

I have a 20 year old Toro 826. Best $1000 I ever spent. I put $200 into it last year refurbishing it. New scraper bar, shoes, belts and drive gear and shaft. She's all brand new again. It's never let me down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Where are you located? Look at CL? Buy your straw hats in the winter kind of thinking.....

Nothing less than 8HP. 1970s Ariens were built much better than today's machines. Heavier gauge steel, cast iron gear box. Do NOT look at any with auger control down on housing. Get electric start. I could pay a shop to repower and refurbish my  1971 machine a couple of times over without coming close to the price they are asking for new (inferior) models today.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another vote for Ariens here. I have a ~15 year old 926. Mine came with the single belt auger drive, which would struggle with anything over 10". I upgraded it to the dual belt design and wow, what a difference. Cuts through 18" drifts like nothing. I did some other much needed maintenance too, cables, friction disc, stuff like that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had an old snow blower I bought for 200 bucks, replaced couple belts, and it ran OK. From my experience (limited I admit) and having used a neighbors newer SB, you def don't want a single stage or electric model if you get serious snow. Stick with gas, 2 stage to really throw the snow. I'd also look for a model with large diameter tires. Unit I had had fat knobbies, but small (like 12 inch). Those tires just spun around a lot in this wet slick chit we see on the east cost. Larger diameter gives you more torque on low drive when you've got a lot of snow to move. Seems a couple guys here have good experience with Ariens, def would look into that if I were you. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, bospa357 said:

I have a 20 year old Toro 826. Best $1000 I ever spent. I put $200 into it last year refurbishing it. New scraper bar, shoes, belts and drive gear and shaft. She's all brand new again. It's never let me down.

Mine is actually 14yo.  Thread reminded me to look for shear bolts.  That was one thing I definitely liked- shear bolts you can get from any hardware store

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 mins ago, JimW said:

Mine is actually 14yo.  Thread reminded me to look for shear bolts.  That was one thing I definitely liked- shear bolts you can get from any hardware store

I don't bother buying shear bolts from the manufacturer. I've been using regular 5/16" x 2" bolts from home depot or Lowes. They're way cheaper and they work just the same. If anything gets wedged in the blades the bolts snap right off just like shear bolts would. Been using them for 10 years without a problem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 mins ago, chitala383 said:

I don't bother buying shear bolts from the manufacturer. I've been using regular 5/16" x 2" bolts from home depot or Lowes. They're way cheaper and they work just the same. If anything gets wedged in the blades the bolts snap right off just like shear bolts would. Been using them for 10 years without a problem.

Toro comes from factory with ordinary grade 5 bolts.  I imagine they sell some branded over priced replacements but I don't think anyone buys them.   Good to know they work on Ariens too.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bought a Husqvarva a few years ago. It's been flawless, and my driveway is gravel so it takes a lot of abuse. Can't remember if it's the 227 or the 230, was looking at both. Would have to dig it out of the shed to see for sure.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Husqvarna 230 here,bought used from one of my customers. They used it once,sold their property and moved to Cali,sold to me for $650. A beast,barely broken in.

Best upgrade=drift cutters. Only downside,how much room it takes up in garage,puts squeeze on bike storage.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

20 years ago I bought an eight and a half horsepower Ariens at a big box store. it goes through anyting and I have done little to no maintenance on it aside from oil changes and adjusting belts. takes up a lot of room in the garage but when you get the wet heavy stuff it sure works great.

If you're looking to cut down on storage space you could always remove the handle bolts and flip them on top of the unit, will save you about 2 feet 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to register here in order to participate.

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.