Lawn and Leaf Blowers Buying Guide [VIDEO]

 

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Hello, my name is Ron Weingartz and I’d like to talk to you today about what to look for when you’re purchasing a leaf blower.

First off, there’s two very important features we’re looking for in a leaf blower. One is air speed, the other is air volume. The air speed is what you need to move the lighter debris, and move it a good distance. The air volume is what you need, you need the extra air volume for powering the heavier debris, like heavier leaves, as an example.

So, having a lot of speed without volume isn’t going tdo help for heavier leaf removal and, vice versa, if you’re blowing lighter material, you need the higher air speed. So, the two work hand in hand.

Electric Blowers

Blowers are available in gas and electric. Electric is an excellent option if you’re blowing lighter debris; light leaves, blowing clippings off the sidewalk after mowing.

Very lightweight, easy to handle. Your typical electric blowers, because they are a high speed motor, they have excellent air speed, but they don’t have the volume of air that many of your gas blowers would have.

There’s many excellent options and excellent brands in the electric powered units.

Gas Powered Blowers

As you move into the gas units, the gas units are available in different size displacement engines. They can run a larger diameter fan and give you increased performance. Your entry level machines, there again, they pick up a little more weight than the electric, but they’re still fairly light. Most manufacturers now offer excellent gas powered machines.

What to Look For In a Gas Blower

Some other things to look for in a gas handheld is typically you’ll start out with your base unit, which will perform excellent. As you move into your larger, you’ll get into a larger displacement engine. Many times, you’ll have anti-vibration systems to help absorb the engine vibration, for continuous operation.

Another nice feature to look for is a trigger-lock. If you’re running it an extended period of time, you can lock the trigger in place, so you won’t have to squeeze the trigger for extended use.

Backpack Leaf Blowers

Another very popular option is basically a backpack unit. They start in the backpack units with an engine size comparable to a large handheld. With the backpack, basically you’re supporting all the weight on your back, so you’re not carrying the weight if you’re using for extended periods of time.

As you go into the backpacks, because you are supporting the weight on the back, you can go into much larger units. This is what you’ll find, a lot of times, your commercial operators going with. But, there’s also many homeowners that are going to this type of unit, as well.

There’s a considerably larger engine, a much larger fan. Sometimes, you’ll pick up anywhere from 30-70% more power than a conventional handheld unit.

What to Look for in a Backpack Blower

Things to look for in a backpack: there again, because it is a larger unit, you want a good rubber mounted isolation system to help absorb some of the shock load of the engine vibration.

Some other features, you’ll either have the throttle on the tubes, or you’ll have the throttle on the side hand control. Really, this is a matter of personal preference which one you’re more comfortable with. Many blowers that are available offer that as an option with either choice depending on the operator.

The backpacks range in size to the smaller, light commercial use into the professional series. There again, they give you more power for if you have a lot of heavy leaves. But, you also do pick up some weight. So, you want to make sure it’s comfortable on your back so you don’t have something that’s too big for you to handle.

There again, there’s many excellent manufacturers of backpack blowers.

Accessories: Vacuum System

Most all of your handheld, gas and electric, do offer a vacuum system. The vacuum system can be easily converted from a blower to a vacuum. So, if you want to vacuum the leaves, times out of your shrub beds, things like that, excellent choice. You do get some shredding action, so you get more leaves into the bag.

Push/Walk Behind Blowers

From there, we go into the larger, push type blowers. These are powered by a much larger engine. Typically, on three wheels. You want to look for something with large wheels, so it will roll through the uneven terrain of the lawn.

Another big advancement in the push blowers, because they are a heavier machine, there’s companies like Billy Goat that have gone to a plastic housing and a plastic impeller to considerably drop the weight and yet, they can run a larger fan size to develop more speed and more volume.

What these would be used for is more for commercial applications, if you have a lot of heavy leaf removal, these will help blow those, if you’re looking to blow them out into the street for leaf pickup. So, this would really be for more heavier application.

That gives you a little bit of a rundown of what’s available in blowers.

Video Courtesy: Weingartz Lawn to Snow