Why? nothing much happening here IMO..I see nothing moderators need to be concerned about. (yet)Scott, William, Mark!
Get OVER HERE. please.:icon-deadhorse::banghead::eeek:
Yes, very timely and because it's going to get to 75 degrees here Wednesday I'm getting out the sawdust, wet it down and have some fun. :icon_smile_tongue: I was actually toying with the idea of replacing my 1999 single stage this year, guess I'll wait a few months.Why? nothing much happening here IMO..I see nothing moderators need to be concerned about. (yet)
yes, we have had these discussions before..but its a timely and useful discussion, especially this time of year.
I have been a long time subscriber to CR, and although their reviews are certainly far from perfect, to say that they are influenced to rate a product higher simply because they are paid to, is just ignorant. Consumer Reports bases every rating they publish, and their entire reputation, on the fact that they don't accept payment or advertising from any manufacturer. In fact, they clearly state that there are times when the only way to rate a new product is to accept something straight from the manufacturer itself so that they can produce a timely rating for that product, however, after it is widely available to the public, they literally go out to purchase it themselves just to insure that the product they received wasn't full of bells and whistles that might have skewed the initial rating. In addition, CR is known for its "secret shoppers" that literally buy dozens, if not 100's, of the same product just to test uniformity and reliability of the 1000's of products it tests. If all of this were shown to be false, CR would tank.I'm not much on reviews from any company that is paid to review products.
Yes, that's pretty much true. If I recall correctly, the only products they choose to test are ones that are sold widely through-out the country. For example, in the case of snow blowers and even lawn tractors, you won't see Simplicity anywhere in their ratings, however, you have seen Snapper. Because Snapper, although built by Briggs and Stratton like Simplicity, has a larger dealer network (or at least it used to) it has appeared in their ratings of lawn tractors from time to time. Yet, Simplicity, which is a far superior machine, is not cutting enough lawns or blowing enough snow for CR to really pay attention.They seem to test only big box snow blowers...
Yep, sounds weird. However, after watching the video and even scanning for pictures, that saw dust looks pretty clumpy and heavy. I doubt they could ever truly mimic the EOD piles that accumulate and truly hinder many machines, however, to discount their methods is just wrong. In fact, if you read the fine print in their latest issue it says, "we check-test in real dense snow piles." This is in relation to snow being plowed to the edge of a driveway. So, yes, the wet saw dust method is used, but so is real snow.I stopped reading their reviews when I saw a video they put up that said they tested their snow blowers in the summer time by blowing wet sawdust!
Finally, I looked up all of the Ariens models in the rankings provided in the print issue, and all 3 can still be bought just about everywhere. And, although the prices are not 100% accurate, they are not so far off that a consumer would hesitate to make the purchase. In fact, for the most part, they were off by $29.00 if the purchase was made online instead of a dealer. With all of that said, CR should not imply the latest ratings pertain to the 2016 model year. However, to be fair, it clearly states on the cover page that they are publishing the “latest ratings” from their labs. In fact, the title is simply Product Updates. CR never actually says that the snow blowers listed are the latest and greatest, just a ranking for the models that have been tested. It’s certainly misleading, but every snow blower can still be bought.They chose two Ariens models that are discontinued
Thats another potential "problem" with the CR reviews of snowblowers..they rate the performance of the machines only when they are brand new.Smolenski,
Actually my biggest criticism of CR is they don't do enough of the above. They'll test TVs and rate some off-brand higher than Sony solely because it did better in testing. That's fine for what it is, but two years from now when the "Dave's TVs" set croaks and your neighbor's Sony is still working, you're not going to be a happy camper.
I'm not quite sure how CR figures out reliability from their survey. However, I do from reading the fine print that they take into account only the first 3 years of ownership. This obviously isn't very long. One would think that the reliability of any machine will only get worse as time goes on, so why CR chose 3 years is a bit confusing. I would think that any machine should last 3 years if used by a typical homeowner. Maybe this is why there is no statistical difference between #1 Honda and #7 Craftsman.Thats another potential "problem" with the CR reviews of snowblowers..they rate the performance of the machines only when they are brand new.
Which they need to do of course...but..there is no account taken of longevity and reliability over time. .
..it would be helpful if they could do the same with other products.
wow, thats very unusual.The vast majority of blowers I saw in action was Honda's. By 10-1 over any other brand.
that could be one factor, but im guessing there is a second factor in play as well..We get big snow here so maybe that is the reason Honda is so dominant.
The bucks theory may be true. I bought an hs624 with very low hours for 500. I t has served me well the last 3 winters. It goes thru anything even the "Tahoe Concrete" as it is called around here.wow, thats very unusual.
In my area I see Ariens or Toro probably 50%, and very few Hondas..
that could be one factor, but im guessing there is a second factor in play as well..
If you are seeing Honda snowblowers 10-1 over any other brand, im guessing that in addition to "big snow", this is also a "big bucks" neighborhood!
(not that there is anything wrong with that..)