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NeilBlanchard 11-08-10 10:42 AM

Electric Landscaping Machines
 
3 Attachment(s)
Hello,

I have four plug-in electric machines that I use to do work in my yard.

http://ecorenovator.org/forum/attach...1&d=1392229372

Electric 20" mower



http://ecorenovator.org/forum/attach...1&d=1392229397

Electric leaf vacuum/blower



http://ecorenovator.org/forum/attach...1&d=1392229419

10" pole/chainsaw

I have heavy duty hedge/brush cutter, too -- I forget the brand and model at the moment.

The mower uses an average of 0.425kWh per hour. The BTU equivalent is 0.0127 gallons of gasoline per hour.

The leaf vacuum/blower uses 1.15 kWh per hour. The BTU equivalent is 0.034 gallons of gasoline per hour.

I used the chainsaw (to cut fallen trees and to prune dead branches) for about an hour, and it used 0.3kWh -- which is equivalent to just 0.009 gallons of gasoline. keep in mind, that you cannot use a chainsaw as continuously as the other tools. It does also require chain lubrication oil, like any chainsaw does. The pole attachment is adjustable up to 15' long, and it is an awesome tool if you have any trees to deal with.

gasstingy 11-10-10 12:47 PM

Your electric mower is corded then, so I'm curious how big is your yard and what obstacles do you have?

I have far too big of a yard for a walk behind mower, but have been considering an electric walk behind model for trimming around the house and the trees in the front yard. So far, I've been thinking cordless though.

strider3700 11-10-10 01:42 PM

I have a corded electric. my yard is about 9000 sqft with maybe 2000-3000 of that being lawn. the cord is a bit annoying but not bad when you get used to the pattern you have to follow so that it's always out of the way.

My biggest complaint is if the lawn is damp you just can't mow, it will bog down and clog, it's also a warning in the manual to not mow wet grass. During the summer this is fine, but spring and fall when the lawn grows the fastest I have to have 3 or 4 straight days of no rain and that hasn't happened in over a month so the lawn is 6 inches tall...

Daox 11-10-10 01:46 PM

How do you like the yard tools Neil? A pros/cons list would be cool.

NeilBlanchard 11-10-10 02:48 PM

Hi,

Quote:

Originally Posted by gasstingy (Post 9288)
Your electric mower is corded then, so I'm curious how big is your yard and what obstacles do you have?

I have far too big of a yard for a walk behind mower, but have been considering an electric walk behind model for trimming around the house and the trees in the front yard. So far, I've been thinking cordless though.

My yard is 'L' shaped an is about 4/10's of an acre. I live in New England, so there are a fair number of obstacles. I use 200' of cord and it is way more than I need for most of the grass area. I have also used the mower on a very large lawn (close to 2 acres that takes over 4 hours to mow) with 250' of cord. i have also used it on several other lawns from 1/4 to 1/2 acre or so. The obstacles are an issue, but with a little trial and error you can figure out ways to make it work.

I use the same cords with the leaf blower and the chainsaw. I get good at chaining them -- which uses interlocking loops to prevent (most) of the tangling.

I realized I also own one other electric landscaping tool: a heavy duty hedge/brush cutter.

Quote:

How do you like the yard tools Neil? A pros/cons list would be cool.
Sure -- I meant to add some details.

Managing the cords is the main issue. I have two 100' 14 gauge cords, and one 50' 12 gauge. The 100' cords are rated at 15A, and while the mower peaks at 12A (very briefly on start up), it runs most of the time between 4-6A. I just made a really cool looking and effective way to link the two cords together out of 12 Velcro straps (that I had for wrapping up computer wires). I'll post a picture of this soon.

Chaining the cords is the main chore with any of the tools. The mower and the chainsaw can cut the cord -- I did manage to cut it once with a chainsaw... :o Luckily, it is on a GFI outlet and I only cut off about 10', so a new receptacle was all I needed.

The mower is great -- the wheels have ball bearings and the deck is steel and is quite sturdy. It is very easy to push, because it is light weight and rolls very smoothly -- and I think the wheels will last a very long time; like decades.

I was suspicious of the one-lever height adjustment, but it has worked flawlessly. It is very quiet, and runs completely cool and fume-free! The handle folds in half with two knobs, and it fits easily into my Scion xA with the 2/3 side of the rear seat folded flat.

I have used it on damp grass, and yes it clogs a bit with the rear bag, but worked fine with the side discharge. On really thick grass, it slows the motor more in mulching mode, so I use the side discharge chute.

The leaf blower/vacuum is pretty noisy, and I use a pair of good "ear muffs" to prevent my ears ringing after extended use. The model I have has a cast aluminum impeller and this is key -- I have also used a lesser model Toro, and the plastic impeller doesn't work quite as well. The impeller does have a significant amount of wear and tear, especially from the small twigs and the occasional chunk of wood or pebbles that get sucked into it.

The biggest challenge in deep leaves is to prevent it from clogging -- sweeping it back and forth works well. Wet leaves are harder to deal with and sometimes twigs cause clogs inside the housing. You need to wear sturdy work gloves to keep the flying bits from stinging your hands -- I find that by blocking the discharge, you can often unclog it without too much effort.

I use the blower nozzle to gather leaves that are dispersed. I use the vacuum without the bag most of the time -- this shifts everything and chips it down to a fraction of the volume. This is especially good way to go, if you can pile the leaves up under a tree or on a garden or planting bed. Or, I do this once to reduce the volume, and then use the bag to collect everything, and then I dump it out on a tarp to move a large quantity to a place where I can compost them.

I also use the electric mower to mulch leaves in place, if there aren't many left, and/or before collecting them with the vacuum. This lets the small bits compost in place without having a mat, which kills the grass.

I never bag my leaves for curbside collection. By chipping them up, they will completely compost by the next year, and this eliminates the need for any chemical fertilizers!

The pole saw is an awesome tool! My neighbor Mack has put it to more of a test than I have -- they heat with wood, and he has had to do some major tree work with it. I can't see how I could get along without it -- broken branches and heavy pruning, and the endless numbers of Norway maple weeds have put it to the test.

You have to be *very* careful how you cut long branches, especially when the handle is 15' long -- I bent the chain bar almost 30 degrees on a branch at my Mom's house. You cannot let it get bound up... So cutting off long branches in say 8' long segments is a wise thing to do.

About half the time, I use it as a small handheld chainsaw -- it works very well at this. The one weak point is the chain oiler is not consistent and it could be improved a bit. Again, it is very quiet, and runs very cool (though it can warm up with lots of continuous use) and -- no fumes is an excellent thing!

NeilBlanchard 11-16-10 07:19 PM

I almost forgot -- I also have an electric trimmer, made by Husqvarna. Though now that I try to find a link to post; it seems it may have been discontinued... :-(

NeilBlanchard 01-22-11 09:40 AM

I used my neighbor's Toro 1800 18" single stage electric snowblower for about 50 minutes, and used 0.59kWh. I was using it quite hard -- I cleared about 18" of snow from three storms from most of a driveway that can park about 6 cars lined up; and a 40' path to my compost bin through even more snow, and also cleaned up the other driveway (I live on a corner lot)! In 50 minutes...

The hourly energy use is ~0.708kWh = 0.34 cup of gasoline per hour. At my local (relatively expensive) electrical rate of about 17 cents / kWh, that's about 12 cents worth of electricity per hour.

This is pretty impressive performance, I think. If I was going to buy an electric snowblower, I would get this one, which is slightly larger and a bit more powerful than the Toro model, and it is significantly less expensive:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/...VL._SS400_.jpg
(click on image for link)

hamsterpower 01-22-11 05:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 11286)
I used my neighbor's Toro 1800 18" single stage electric snowblower for about 50 minutes, and used 0.59kWh. I was using it quite hard -- I cleared about 18" of snow from three storms from most of a driveway that can park about 6 cars lined up; and a 40' path to my compost bin through even more snow, and also cleaned up the other driveway (I live on a corner lot)! In 50 minutes...

The hourly energy use is ~0.708kWh = 0.34 cup of gasoline per hour. At my local (relatively expensive) electrical rate of about 17 cents / kWh, that's about 12 cents worth of electricity per hour.

This is pretty impressive performance, I think. If I was going to buy an electric snowblower, I would get this one, which is slightly larger and a bit more powerful than the Toro model, and it is significantly less expensive:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/...VL._SS400_.jpg
(click on image for link)

I have the Toro 1800 too and I can vouch for it's very impressive performance. I read lots of reviews before deciding on the Toro over the Snow Joe. If you look closely at the two you will see how narrow the chute is on the Snow Joe. Since clogging is a real concern, that was the final deciding factor. In two full winters of use the only time I gave up using the Toro I have, was a very heavy snow fall where the plows had compressed the end of the driveway too much. My Toro easily cleared the two 18" falls we've had this year.

NeilBlanchard 01-22-11 06:14 PM

That is something I had not considered; though the auger designs are slightly different as well -- the Toro is a smooth arcing helix, while the Snow Joe has the flat section. They may be a bit different size? The base of the Snow Joe chute appears to be hinged for clearing?

Can you link to any review comparisons, please?

[Edit: found one! http://www.amazon.com/Snow-Joe-622U1...R3BLOJAWECUYN1 ]

The Toro 1800 appears to be revised a bit now. Here's the new version:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/...500_AA300_.jpg
(click on image for link)

Here's the older version, which is the one my neighbor owns:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/...500_AA300_.jpg

The motor is up from 12A to 15A (which is definitely good!), the handle, cord, chute crank and angle, wheel size, etc. are all revised. I like the lower handle, and it may be that the Toro is much lighter weight. The older part number was 38025, and the new one is 38381.

[Edit: do we know how the Toro connects the motor to the auger? The Snow Joe uses a belt, and several folks mention it as a problem point...

Also, someone mentions that on the SJ you have to push a button and then grab the lever on the handle to start it -- this sounds like an extra step that would be irksome in the long run?]

NeilBlanchard 01-22-11 07:09 PM

I've answered my own question:

https://homeownersolutions.toro.com/...ualsResultPage

You may have to enter the 38381 model number...

The Toro uses two belts: the first one is toothed and steps down about 1:3, and the second is a multi-vee groove with a tensioner, which further reduces the speed by about 1:6 or 1:8. The belts are on the left side as you stand using the machine.

NeilBlanchard 01-27-11 12:46 PM

I got to borrow my neighbor's Toro again, and I cleared the entire 90' long driveway, including the snow plow pile at the street; we got about 11" - 12" of snow. The width averages 9' or so, and the street is flared to almost 15-16' wide. I also cleared a 30' path.

All of that in just 30 minutes -- and using just 0.40kWh of power! Amazing.

hamsterpower 02-07-11 03:56 AM

so I finally discovered a problem with my Toro 1800. The auger is molded to the shaft instead of having shear pins as a "real" snow blower would. I hit the corner of a concrete pad and now there is some play on the shaft. The little Toro still works great but rattles quite a bit. I can see how this is going to get worse and eventually need a whole new auger.

NeilBlanchard 02-07-11 05:11 AM

Right, my neighbor's has a "tear" on one of the blades, but it still works fine. My Dad has had his for about 15 years.

Is yours the newer 15A model (38381), or the older 12A model (38025)?

hamsterpower 02-07-11 08:27 AM

Mine is the older 12amp. I've run it through two winters now. bought it at Amazon.

NeilBlanchard 02-07-11 12:06 PM

Thanks for the info.

I found out that Amazon sells them through True Value Hardware, so if you buy through them, you can get free delivery to your local store, and support them more directly. It costs about $320 for the new 15A model.

NeilBlanchard 12-05-11 07:27 AM

I got a Toro Power Curve 1800 electric snow blower, but as of yet, I have not had to use it.

We did get a lot of downed branches with the early super-wet snow at the end of October (while the leaves were still on the trees, much later than they usually are!) and I had a pile of smaller branches almost twice as big as my 1 car garage... And there are branches down on neighbors property, too. (My immediate neighbors are dealing with the mother Deb collapsing on Thanksgiving morning -- she was unresponsive for about a day, but she is back home now.)

So, I bought an electric branch chipper:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/...500_AA300_.jpg
(click on image for link)

It works quite well. I have misplaced my Kill-A-Watt so I don't know what it consumes, yet. I have chipped about 3/4 of the new storm-downed branches, and then I have to work my way through the older branches. About four of my neighbors want to buy into it, and I'm happy about that. It fits up to 2 1/2" diameter branches, but in the real world it is the bends and curves of the branch that limits what you can chip.

Also, I want to save the larger sections for use in a wood stove or fireplace. The blades are not as sharp as when it was new, so anything above 1" or so takes careful feeding to not bog down the motor -- I have not blown the breaker yet. You have to hold *back* on the larger pieces to keep them from getting pulled in too fast. It is the smaller boughs that are so bulky and not worth burning, and these are a piece of cake for this chipper, even with about 7 or 8 hours of use on the blades.

The pile of chips is fairly impressive -- it's about 14' x 10' oval and over a foot deep in the middle. :-) I'll post a picture when I can.

By the way, it also shreds leaves and small twigs up to 1/2" diameter using the hopper, and it has a large (about 6' long x 2' dia) heavy duty filter bag, if you want to control where the chips go more precisely than just pointing the outlet.

Daox 12-05-11 08:07 AM

Wow, that sounds like a lot of chips. Whatcha gonna do with it all? Yours and neighbor's flower beds?

NeilBlanchard 12-05-11 05:52 PM

It will compost where it sits, I think. :) I've got a lot more to chip, as well.

The soil on my property is quite thin (there are several spots with ledge showing, and much of what is there is crappy fill -- where I dug the foundation for the mudroom addition I did about 14 years ago, there was about 18" deep of so-called clink which is the slag from the coke furnaces at the Maynard mill. There was also the wire frame of a mattress, and the steel frame of a baby carriage rusting in the bony gravel that made up most of the rest of the dirt.

NeilBlanchard 12-15-13 08:22 PM

Okay - a follow up on my Toro electric snowblower. It broke for a second time - a small piece of wood got jammed in the auger, and the hex aluminum nut spun in the plastic pulley - again.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v7...ps5d6fc6a1.jpg

This happened last year, and I tried to repair it, but it did not work. So, I bought a replacement part, and it happened again today. Grrrr. I sent Toro an email explaining the problem, and explaining how I think the pulley needs to be made out of aluminum, or have an aluminum hub, or be a reinforced plastic (it is ABS, I think).

So, I went to my local hardware store and bought the Snow Joe. It works better than my 2nd gen Toro, and it is a lot like the 1st gen Toro. It has a bit more power to push through deep snow and throw it farther. The handle is more sturdy.

http://i.walmartimages.com/i/p/00/18...26_500X500.jpg

It is lower cost than the Toro - $250 vs ~$310. I'll see how it goes for longevity.

Daox 12-16-13 10:16 AM

What model did you get?

Snow Joe / Sun Joe - Get Equipped ™ - Products

NeilBlanchard 12-16-13 12:01 PM

I'm not sure which of these two - I'll confirm it when I get home:

http://www.snowjoe.com/Snow-Joe-Ultr...-Thrower-SJ620
Snow Joe Ultra 18-IN 15 AMP Electric Snow Thrower - SJ622E

I think it is probably the 13.5A model, since it did not include the cleanout tool.

Edit: yes it is the 13.5A model without the light.

Snow Joe Ultra 18 in. 13.5 Amp Electric Snow Thrower - amazon.com

More snow tomorrow!

NeilBlanchard 12-18-13 01:21 PM

The new Snow Joe worked incredibly well in the 8-9" of fine powder we got in the storm yesterday. The one glitch is the handle on the chute direction crank fell off - it is held on with 2 'C' clips (my brother calls them 'oh Jesus' clips, because they always go flying...). I'll either get another clip or live without the handle, as the rod works just fine.

torycooper 01-01-14 11:17 PM

Cordless is always a better option. You can go as far as you wish, trimming your lawn.

NeilBlanchard 01-03-14 09:36 AM

Cordless has definite advantages, but also definite disadvantages. Portability is big advantage, and limited use time is a big disadvantage. Batteries will wear out, and they will need replacing.

A corded tool costs a bit less, even with the cost of a 100' cord included, and you can keep working and working with the tool as long as you physically can. Also, the electricity used for corded is significantly less - charging and discharging losses are non-trivial.

We just got our third snow storm of this winter, and it left us about 8 inches of powder. It was ~4F when I went out to clear the snow. Me and my Snow Joe ( Snow Joe Ultra 18-IN 13.5 AMP Electric Snow Thrower - SJ620 ) and a 200 foot extension cord ...

Cleared a 90 foot long driveway, including the plow pile and:
Two ~36 foot driveways, , including both plow piles and:
A ~55 foot path between the house and the long driveway and:
A ~40 foot path to the compost bin and:
An access area to the fire hydrant, through the plow pile.

In about and hour and a half.

With about 16 cents of electricity.

Daox 01-03-14 09:44 AM

Haha, thats a lot of snow moving! Nice job. You probably would have burned through about a gallon of gas in that time I'd guess.

NeilBlanchard 01-03-14 09:50 AM

My old gas snow blower would have burned a quart to a quart and a half, maybe? This was light snow. I would have had to have driven to buy that gas, and I would have had to change the oil in the crankcase, and I would have had to pull the starter cord for much too long, as well.

Gas tools a terrible in many ways. I am *all* electric, now!

MN Renovator 01-05-14 09:04 PM

My electric snowblower used 470wh(kill-a-watt reading) on a 25 minute run through 4-5 inches of semi-moist snow. It plows right through it but I'm still trying to figure out the best way of handling the cord. I see a bunch of videos of people who go all the way down the driveway and do the 'cord waggle' back up before making the next run down. I've been doing my driveway at a 45ish degree angle doing one push to the left, back up and do a push on the right and the cord never gets in the way. I've been wondering if there is a better way.

Most of my driveway runs cost about 5 cents for me. I've been thinking about and even started a thread about converting this to cordless with a lithium pack but I figured I'd need about a kwh to be safe but if I instead used a battery that would get the job done 80% of the time and run it until it was nearly exhausted and do the spots harder to reach with a cord first, I'd save on the labor and the cost of the battery. These little electric snowblowers are much more powerful than the 2-stroke gas snowblowers of a similar design. My brother has one at his house and it would bog down easily and I actually can get the job done with the electric faster.

I'm just trying to figure out better tactics of cord management. I want to get one of those cord rewinder reels and pull out the pin that prevents it from retracting and just having it keep the cord taught and then I can just go about the job. The ones with 12 gauge cord are spendy though and I'm not sure if the one I'd buy would be hackable enough for it to work and how well this idea would work.

NeilBlanchard 01-05-14 09:21 PM

Do you have a cold weather cord? Mine are regular cords, and the get really stiff and hard to handle, and they get wound up and tangle sometimes. When I mow with an electric mower, I start close to the plug and do rows back and forth moving away from the plug. The cord always is on the part I've already mowed and the mower always stays clear of the cord.

The driveway is a different dynamic, and I do one pass in the middle or down one side. Then at the snow plow pile, I do ~1/2 width passes across throwing the snow onto the sides. And this lets me clear a flare to widen the end. Then I do a pass back up the driveway moving away from the cord. It works easier if the snow is being thrown away from the cord, so it doesn't get buried - not being able to see the cord is not good.

MN Renovator 01-05-14 09:45 PM

I haven't had any issues with a stiff extension cord. This is what I'm using, except I paid quite a bit less for it a few years ago when I bought it. They also have the same cord with a greenish color and a red stripe but the rest of the packaging match and they are both 100 foot 12 gauge cord with a standard 120v 15 amp plug. It doesn't say its a cold weather cord but it does the job and I don't bring it inside or anything so its cold all winter. I originally bought it for the electric mower but when I bought the electric snowblower its been fitting the bill just fine.

12-3, 100', 1 Outlet, Stripes™ Orange/Blue Extension Cord at Menards

NeilBlanchard 01-06-14 05:56 AM

Hi,

I think the blue stripe, or a full blue jacket means that it is a cold weather cord. 12ga is overkill, though. My 13.5A snow blower and the electric mower and also my wood chipper, all can run fine on a 14ga cord - because the outside plug on my house is a 10A GFI circuit, and I've only tripped it once (or maybe twice?) with the chipper.

I own three 100' 12ga cords (yellow) that I use for mowing, and they are heavy to deal with. I have two 100' 14ga cords (orange), and I have a 50' 12ga. My mother-in-law uses two 100' 16ga cords for mowing and leaf blowing, and has never had a problem.

NeilBlanchard 06-08-14 05:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 18087)
So, I bought an electric branch chipper:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/...500_AA300_.jpg
(click on image for link)

It works quite well. I have misplaced my Kill-A-Watt so I don't know what it consumes, yet. I have chipped about 3/4 of the new storm-downed branches, and then I have to work my way through the older branches. About four of my neighbors want to buy into it, and I'm happy about that. It fits up to 2 1/2" diameter branches, but in the real world it is the bends and curves of the branch that limits what you can chip.

Also, I want to save the larger sections for use in a wood stove or fireplace. The blades are not as sharp as when it was new, so anything above 1" or so takes careful feeding to not bog down the motor -- I have not blown the breaker yet. You have to hold *back* on the larger pieces to keep them from getting pulled in too fast. It is the smaller boughs that are so bulky and not worth burning, and these are a piece of cake for this chipper, even with about 7 or 8 hours of use on the blades.

The pile of chips is fairly impressive -- it's about 14' x 10' oval and over a foot deep in the middle. :-) I'll post a picture when I can.

By the way, it also shreds leaves and small twigs up to 1/2" diameter using the hopper, and it has a large (about 6' long x 2' dia) heavy duty filter bag, if you want to control where the chips go more precisely than just pointing the outlet.

Okay, I have a troubleshooting question: the 1.5HP 14A electric motor has a circuit breaker on the side of the motor housing that is shutting off prematurely. It is getting warm to the touch. Is this something I can fix, do you think? It never did this before.

Daox 06-09-14 08:47 AM

Is it pulling abnormally high amps? Or, are you thinking the circuit breaker is just bad?

NeilBlanchard 06-09-14 10:11 PM

I think the breaker on the motor housing is malfunctioning. The GFI outlet and the 10A house circuit breaker are not tripping. The motor is rated at 14A, so the local breaker should not be tripping.

hamsterpower 02-15-15 04:24 PM

I lost a good friend today.
 
My 1st gen Toro Powercurve electric snow blower has finally failed me. Originally purchased in 09, my Toro has been a trusted companion through many a winter. This year being especially challenging here in greater Boston. My Toro has handled everything I have asked of it even this years record setting blizzards, but today something was different. I have yet to tear it down to find the true problem but it smells like a fried motor. One thing I know is these are not really friendly to repairs so I doubt it would be cost effective to fix. Based on Neil's reveiw of the Snow Joe along with other reveiws on Amazon- I have a new 15 amp model on its way.
I'll open up the Toro in the warm of spring and if repairable, pass it on to my mother to help with her deck and walks.
For now you rest my dear Powercurve.

hamsterpower 03-07-15 09:49 AM

First impression of the Snow Joe.
 
So I received my new Snow Joe 18 inch, 15 amp electric snow thrower. And just like I had hoped, we have not gotten any snow since. The "bought a new snow blower" insurance plan worked perfectly.
My first impressions of the Snow Joe is I can see why it was so much less costly. The overall design is not as nice as the Toro I have. The handle has two folding joints that seem a bit too flexable and there is no lifting handle. The Toro has a handle behind the throwing chute that is at the balance point so I could easily pick up the whole unit and make passes through larger banks of snow, working top to bottom. I will really miss that on the Snoe Joe. The Toro felt like high quality fiber reinforced (strong) plastic, where the Snoe Joe feels soft. Much softer plastic with thin metal wear plates at certain rub points. The Toro was activated by a long button across most of the handle and was easy to operate with either hand. The Snow Joe has a lever with a safety button on only the right side. You need to depress the button and then pull the lever. I'm sure this will be a challenge with gloves on in the cold and with it only on one side it limits the angles the user can work. Last ly, the Toro had a strong plastic auger the slowly wore away but always made good contact with the pavement. After 5+ years it had certainly worn down but not to where it was a problem by any stretch. The Snoe Joe has a metal auger with a rubber "squeegee" that looks like scrap tire sidewall. I'm not sure how long this will work well. That's all for now, I'll update this when I get to actually use the Snow Joe.

NeilBlanchard 03-10-15 09:34 PM

I have had nothing but good results from my Snow Joe, and nothing but problems with my 2nd gen Toro. The handle of the Snow Joe is much stronger (despite the hinge points. The top handle of the Toro feels like it could snap off.

I sheared the hub of the main drive pulley in the Toro twice; when the impeller gets stopped by something, like a small bit of wood, or a chunk of ice. The 1st gen Toro is great, but the 2nd gen ain't up to snuff.

The balance of the Toro is a bit better, but you can use the lowest crossbar on the Snow Joe handle to pick it up.

Snow Joe has made it through two winters - and this one was a DOOZY. I had it working through several storms where just the top of the chute was visible above the snow, and it kept on working. If the air temp drops to the low single numbers, the clutch on the impeller slips a bit more than otherwise. But with a bit of smooth use, it warms up and keeps on going. Just don't leave it out in subzero nights.

The Snow Joe works as well, or better than the older Toro.

papitohead 04-14-16 11:16 AM

The oldest garden tool I have is a Black & Decker blower. Got it in 1988 when Kmart closed here in Puerto Rico for $15. Then I got transferred back to NY in 91 where I used it to blow the leaves in fall and Spring cleaning of the yard. Got transferred back to PR in 1998 and still use it here to clean the yard. Still works like if it was new.


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