Best Snowblowers to Choose From

Snow removal can be taxing on the body and time consuming. These powerful snowblowers will quickly and efficiently remove heavy snow from driveways and sidewalks.

Types of Snowblowers

The type of snowblower you choose will depend largely on the application, the average snowfall over time for your area, and the type of surface being cleared, as not all snowblowers are designed to handle unpaved driveways. There are three main types of snowblowers: corded electric, cordless electric and gas snowblowers.

Corded Electric Snowblowers

Corded Electric Snowblowers

The electric version of this removal solution is perfect for clearing patios, walkways and driveways in areas that receive light to moderate snowfalls.

They are lighter in weight, require little maintenance, are quieter, and emit fewer pollutants than their gas counterparts. Also, electric snowblowers can be either corded or cordless.    

Because corded electric snowblowers require an electrical outlet for power, you are restricted in how far you can use them from the house. Make sure you purchase a heavy-duty, outdoor extension cord that matches the power requirements of your model, to ensure safe use.

Electric snowblowers work best on smooth, paved surfaces.

Cordless Electric Snowblowers

Cordless Electric Snowblowers

Growing in popularity, cordless snowblowers are also good for light to moderate snowfalls. They use rechargeable batteries that can be used in other outdoor tools that are of the same brand and voltage. They start with the push of a button and are quieter than other models with the added benefit of no gas, oil or fumes. Most cordless blowers are single-stage, so they’re often lighter and easier to use than their gas counterparts. Since they’re usually a bit smaller than gas blowers, they also take up less storage space.

Gas Snowblowers

Gas Snowblowers

Gas snowblowers provide plenty of power and are ideal for clearing heavy snow. Depending on the model you pick, you will be able to tackle medium to large, paved, unpaved or gravel driveways. They are available in three models: single-stage, two-stage and three-stage.

Single-stage models feature an auger that breaks up the snow and then lifts and tosses it aside. They are built to handle light to medium snow.

Two-stage units have an auger that lifts snow, and an impeller that throws it. The impeller action clears a wide path and the two-stage units provide more power than the single-stage model. They are built to clear heavy snow and ice and come in widths of up to 45" to tackle larger and longer driveways.

Three-stage gas snowblowers operate similar to two-stage snowblowers except they have a centre front auger, which helps these snowblowers break down the heavy wet snow.

Overall, gas snowblowers can be more expensive and require regular maintenance, however they will provide greater range and clearing power than any other snow removal options. 

Snowblower Type Snow Type Ideal for Clearing Benefits
Cordless Electric Snowblower

Light, Moderate and Heavy Snow

  • Walkways
  • Porches
  • Patios
  • Decks
  • Small - medium driveways
  • High-voltage battery-powered snowblowers perform comparably to single-stage, gas powered snowblowers
  • One battery lets you power multiple tools
  • Environmentally friendly
  • No gas or oil required
Corded Electric Snowblower
Light to moderate snowfall
  • Walkways
  • Porches
  • Patios
  • Decks
  • Small driveways    
  • Lightweight
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Quiet operation
  • Cost-effective and easy-to-use 
Single-Stage Gas
Light - Medium (2 inches – 9 inches of snow)
  • Walkways
  • Small to medium driveways
  • Gas snowblowers provide plenty of power for removing heavy snow
  • Clear wide paths
  • No waiting for the snowblower to charge    
Two-Stage Gas Heavy with ice (10 – 15 inches of snow)
  • Walkways
  • Medium to large driveways
  • Powerful
  • Clear wide paths
  • Auto-turn steering in some models    
Three-Stage Gas
Heavy (up to 20 inches of snow)
  • Coldest climates
  • Large driveways and parking lots    
  • Most powerful type of snowblower on the market
  • Clears faster and throws snow further 

Snowblower Features

Features Description
Electric Start
Many gas-powered snowblowers now feature electric start mechanisms, which replace pull cords and enable you to get started with the touch of a button.
Power Steering
A feature found on heavier two-stage gas snowblowers that allows for effortless turning and maneuverability.
Heated Grips/Handle Bars
Gloves will protect your hands against the cold, but they may not always keep them warm. Heated grips/handle bars will keep your fingers warm and comfortable no matter how windy or snowy the weather.
Headlights
Headlights allow for better visibility during heavy snowfalls and on dark nights; they are an effective safety feature for operators, pedestrians and motorists.
Skid Shoes Skid shoes are available on two-stage units and allow the height of the auger to be adjusted. This feature is especially useful on gravel driveways.
Drift Cutters Drift cutters are narrow steel blades on the sides of the auger that knife through hard-packed, icy snow drifts, making it easier to power your way through and clear them more efficiently.
Snowblower Safety Tips
  • Before starting the snowblower, clear the area of any foreign objects (eg. door mats, sticks and rocks) which might be picked up and thrown by the snowblower.
  • Whenever you leave the operating position, stop engine by turning key to off. Remove key from switch if unit will be unattended.
  • Before unclogging the discharge chute, shut engine off and wait for all moving parts to stop. Most units include a cleaning tool to remove obstructions from the discharge chute. Never use your hand to unclog discharge chute.
  • Before adjusting, cleaning, repairing, and inspecting the snowblower, pull wire off spark plug and keep wire away from the plug.
  • Leave all safety features intact. Guards, shields, deflectors, and warning decals are on the machine for your protection and that of others.
  • Before each use, check the auger/impeller to ensure that both parts are not frozen, but free to rotate.
  • Keep children and pets far away from the area when you're operating a snowblower.
  • Wear adequate winter clothing; wear boots for maximum traction on slippery surfaces.
  • Clear snow from slopes by going up and down, never across the face. Never clear snow from steep slopes.
  • Remove key from switch and allow engine to cool before storing snowblower. Never store snowblower in the house.

How to Maintain Your Snowblower

  • Change spark plugs every year
  • Change oil after every 25 hours of use
  • Clean air filter after every 5 hours of use
  • Use snow jet spray to prevent snow buildup and clogging
  • Replace fraying or torn belts
  • Inspect impeller and tighten regularly

PRO TIP: 95% of engine problems in gas mowers and blowers are associated with water condensation in the gas tank. Prevent this with fuel stabilizer or new engine fuel at the beginning or end of each season.

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