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What Type Of Snowblower Should I Buy?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by royals30, Jul 23, 2014.

  1. royals30

    royals30 Junior Member
    from MO
    Messages: 11

    Hey all,
    i've got about a dozen residential properties that are too small or narrow to clear with a plow. I'm considering buying a single stage Honda snowblower to maintain these drives and sidewalks. Does anyone have any advice on how well a single stage works? Or should jump up to a two stage?
     
  2. Whiffyspark

    Whiffyspark 2000 Club Member
    from SOMD
    Messages: 2,402

    Light and fluffy - single stage

    Wet and heavy - 2 stage

    Generally, single stages are faster
     
  3. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,112

    I use Toro Single Stage blowers for most of my small stuff. I have one 2 stage that never got used at all last year.
     
  4. cet

    cet PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,202

    Single stage are great but the end of the driveway will be tough when the street plow plugs you in.
     
  5. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,112

    Yes you are right, I use a plow for what the city /town plows leave. If you do not have a plow you may need a two stage.
     
  6. Broncslefty7

    Broncslefty7 Senior Member
    Messages: 631

    we have 57 residential driveways that we snow blow. we have tried almost every kind of snow blower there is. in the end this combo we use saves tons of time. 2 ariens single stage blowers with the bigger motors they are like 450 bucks, and then we keep 1 cub cadet 3 stage blower on the truck in case it gets wet and heavy, or for opening the driveways up. 2 stage you are limited to how fast you can go so if theres 3 inches same speed. the single stage blowers are like twice as fast as the 2 stage blowers which saves tons of time. my guys love the ariens single stage blowers. and in my opinion the ariens single stage blowers are built a little stronger then the toro single stages.
     
  7. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 8,459

    Get a 2 stage.

    then latter on maybe get a single stage for those dustings.

    my 2 stage goes so fast you almost have to jog behind it in top gear.
    I've playing in the snow for over 32yr and I have yet to own a single stage or even think about getting one.

    ps I see the op is from MO. is really is one needed? doesn't it melt almost as fast as it falls?
    lol

    Is most of your snow fall heavy and wet?
    yes?, a 2 stage again will get ride of it with less of a headache
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2014
  8. DSBI

    DSBI Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Single stages are great when it comes to banging out store entrances, sidewalks, etc that are done every 2-4" during an event, when quick/easy single person removal from the truck bed is a must, and when no city plow winrows will be encountered at anytime with the blower as those make for a lot of work, slipping belts, and clogged chutes on a single stage..

    If I could only have one, go two stage without even a thought. Like SnoFarmer said, maybe down the road grab a single stage to make things happen during light dustings.

    I will say that during light dustings, I think a single stage is more efficient. But conditions ideal for single stage blowers are rare, so it would not be my only unit.


    In the commercial world though, we almost never use two stage blowers just because we need to fit them into trucks with spreaders, they are often lifted out by one person, and they need to be lifted above curb height onto sidewalks and store entrances. The fact that there is never more than 2-4 inches on a lot at a time also makes them much better for this application.
     
  9. Broncslefty7

    Broncslefty7 Senior Member
    Messages: 631

    yeah but single stage blowers just spit the light dustings out rite in front of itself. anything under 2" we use stihl leaf blowers. works pretty good for us. its really just personal preference. we probly bought 12 different blowers before we found a comination that worked for us. sometimes you just gotta spend a little bit on r&d. the thing with single stage is it seems like the more snow there is the farther it throws it up to about 9". anything over 9" and u need something bigger then a single stage. thats why we also have a 3 stage cub cadet on the truck cause those things whip some snow like wicked far.
     
  10. DSBI

    DSBI Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Think of the fatigue factor as well. Doing A driveway with a single stage is fine. But after 3,5,10 ++ driveways the level of fatigue experienced by the operator of a single stage will be significantly more than that experienced by the operator of a two stage.
     
  11. Broncslefty7

    Broncslefty7 Senior Member
    Messages: 631

    valid point. honestly, it comes down to your guys too. the guys i have on my pool crews in the summer that work winters are great with their machines. the winter help i hire to work beats the crap out of them and break shear pins like its their only job. thats a large factor of why we switched to single stage. but then i noticed i was saving anywhere from an hour to like an hour and 45 minutes for each route across the board per storm. kinda just made sense that they where faster. you gotta test it out man and see what works for you guys. DSBI is rite though, fatigue will be greater on a single stage blower then a 2 stage blower.
     
  12. Whiffyspark

    Whiffyspark 2000 Club Member
    from SOMD
    Messages: 2,402

    You can make ss self propelled. Just tilt it forward lol.

    That being said, I'm going to try paddle brooms
     
  13. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 8,459

    "In the commercial world though"
    :laughing::laughing::
    so one does not do "commercial" work if they don't have some monstrosity of a salt shaker in the box.
    :laughing:

    I guess most on hear do not plow for $$$$ then.

    As with trucks get more machine than you need.
    do get something that will be strained to do the job.
     
  14. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,486

    Definitely some misinformation in these posts...

    Single stage Toros will handle 6-8" with ease, wet or fluffy. More than 8" and you will spend more time taking half cuts, but it will do it no problem.( I've used them on sidewalks that are drifted in solid 18-24" high. After the first cut through the middle, which sucks big time, your golden.) The only time the the plowed in driveway ends will be a problem is on a very heavy snow that you don't get to more than once. If it's that heavy you should be there 2 times anyways IMO. As far as fatigue, it's no contest, the single stagers are much easier to use and load.

    If these drives are to small for a plow then my vote would be for a single stage 21" cut, and nobody makes a better one than Toro.

    Try the single stage before spending bigger money on a two stage, that way you won't have to kick yourself.
     
  15. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,112

    Yes - Yes - Yes - when I started to read this I thought I wrote it. Thumbs Up
     
  16. Chineau

    Chineau Senior Member
    Messages: 447

    Wiffyspark what are you looking at for a broom? There was a thread up last season with a walk behind broom it seemed good but I had to wonder what do you do once there is more than two feet of snow? For the O.P get a single stage and save for a two stage, the single stage is a snow pros best friend well next to your favourite shovel.
     
  17. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 8,459

    Definitely some misinformation in these posts...

    Single stage Toros will not handle 4-8" of avg to heavy snow with ease, well maybe some of the fluffiest power they could.
    but in real life you will want a 2stage.

    a rule of thumb, for a job to go easily, use more machine than you need.
     
  18. Chineau

    Chineau Senior Member
    Messages: 447

    Farmer are you loading and unloading a two stage a every stop? In season I have both in back of the 150 but reach for the single most often.
     
  19. Whiffyspark

    Whiffyspark 2000 Club Member
    from SOMD
    Messages: 2,402

    Big stihl kombi units.

    We had walk behind brooms last year at our big site . They worked terrific and cut down on hardpack

    I picked up a bunch of smaller sites and need to be able to send a truck with a salter to run through them.
     
  20. Chineau

    Chineau Senior Member
    Messages: 447

    If you haven't spent the money don't I have one and they do work but not as well as a single stage IMHO. I use mine in the spring for lawn sweeping and clean up at this it shines for snow I was not impressed.