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single stage Honda snowblowers...

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by mcgruff, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. mcgruff

    mcgruff Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Hi...been a long time since I posted on here. I need to get a single stage and my concern is the rubber paddle. Will it last a decent while on smaller driveways..some new accounts I can't plow them . Thanks
  2. Snowzilla

    Snowzilla Senior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 397

    I've always been curious about using a Honda HS520 single stage. I think for light snows on concrete walks and drives it would be a slick unit. Many people like Toros. But I like Honda products.
  3. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,594

    They will last a while.
  4. PlowTeam5

    PlowTeam5 Senior Member
    Messages: 333

    I bought my parents a Toro CCR Powerlite, 3.25HP, 10 years ago. IIRC, it has a 16" or 18" clearing path, single state. All I have done is put gas in it these 10 years, and it runs like a champ. Haven't even changed the spark plug or the belt. They have a standard driveway that will fit 4 cars. And since they don't park in the garage, this unit was perfect for doing their sidewalks, and the area in-between the two cars.
  5. leolkfrm

    leolkfrm PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,980

    buy a ramp, 24" 8hp ariens and have at it! the size of the machine will pay for itself in time saved! it does not need to be new, as the 25yr old machines for $250 work great
  6. Waterboss

    Waterboss Member
    Messages: 47

    I've had one for about 7 years now. Never a single problem with it. Even my wife loves it. (I actually call it "her" snowblower - she's used it way more than me - ) I used to hardly ever be home and she'd do our drive for me back then. That being said, my only gripe is the manual chute adjustment. I think Honda could have come up with a better design.
  7. Kramer

    Kramer Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    I have 2 single stage units-- one is a Honda 4 stroke and the other is an mtd knockoff 2 stroke. I believe they are each about 3 hp. The honda is the hr35. I use them for sidewalks only--no driveways. You can lift both into the back of the truck--- I could probably lift the 2 stroke with one hand if there was a handle on it.

    The paddles will last a decent amount of time in either case. But, I dont do gravel with mine so I don't know what that would do to them.

    General impression is that for most cases, I'd take and use the mtd knockoff rather than the Honda. I know this will surprise people.

    On the good side, the Honda will start every time in one or 2 easy pulls. Its also quiet. It throws light snow adequately. It doesn't seem as prone to freezing up as the 2 stroke. Its clearly a solidly built and reliable machine.

    The 2 stroke knockoff is louder of course, but will also start on 1 or 2 pulls. Its VERY light. It also throws light snow very well-- I would say better than the Honda. Its chief advantages over the Honda are clearly the weight and also Ive seen less chute clogging than the Honda.

    Here's the deal-- for all its effort, the Honda struggles to throw even the slightest wet snow. If you look at the paddles they spin like crazy compared to the 2 stoke. You'd think it would throw snow a mile---it doesn't. Like I said, its OK but the 2 stroke does a better job across the board in dry or wet conditions. Either unit cleans down to the pavement, and the paddles pull either unit along. I would venture to say that the Honda actually pulls too fast given a good bite into the surface.

    The game changer is the weight. The problem with the small single stage blowers is that they use tiny wheels on them... and they clog with slush / ice. There are many times you find yourself actually pushing the thing into the snow because snow clogs between the wheels and the housing..
    On many occasions, Ive actually been able to push the 2 stroke over the top of say an 8-10" depth of snow--effectively blowing off the top 4 inches or so. Then I just back up a little and clean the remaining 4" down to pavement. You cant do that with the honda--its too heavy. Its like pushing a shopping cart down the beach.
    And before anyone gives a lecture on plowing with the storm, it's not always possible, especially for sidewalks.

    So I would say after using both, get a 2 stroke to keep the weight down, the brand doesnt matter that much cause neither type does very well in wet conditions. My experience shows the honda being worse than the mtd style.

    My complaints on either include clogging wheels, wet snow handling and some freeze-ups (although this seems more prevalent on the mtd design). I also think the pull starter could be repositioned somehow---while traveling between sites snow falls on the unit and gets frozen where the cord goes through the housing-- I've broken several due to this. It really needs a cover of some type.

    I can't speak on toros-- I use their mowers and they are great.

    The other thing to bring up is that Honda makes a bigger engine model and it likely works better in wet snow. I imagine there's an even bigger weight penalty.

    I bought the Honda used---paid $150 for it and looking back wish I bought another 2 stroke.
  8. 04red2500

    04red2500 Member
    from MI
    Messages: 72

    I have two Honda 4 strokes on sunday i was going threw 12" drifts without any problems.(not sure the model think its like 520 or something) Also i dont buy new flaps for them i make my own out of old snow flaps from plows:mechanic:
  9. Snowzilla

    Snowzilla Senior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 397

    Maybe true about the manual chute adjustment. Just seen the new Cub Cadet has both remote pitch & rotation adjustments and even a headlight. It is also a 4-cycle. Heck you could probably power an LED beacon. :D

    Last edited: Dec 17, 2010
  10. PGLC

    PGLC Junior Member
    Messages: 27

    The Honda HS520 can't be beat. Throws snow and even wet snow far, starts everytime with one pull, and just never quits. I will never buy another model other than this again.
  11. mcgruff

    mcgruff Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    thanks for the replies. I am leaning towards a new honda over a toro single stage. I am not a fan of the new toro chute adjustment. looks and feels weak to me. Thats just my opinion. ussmileyflag
  12. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,594

    Actually that chute control is amazing. Very easy to operate the chute and push the blower at the same time.