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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

I'm new to the forum and to snowblowers. I posted on the general forum and got some helpful feedback. I've decided that Ariens is the way to go, so I want to post a couple of questions here.

Just a little background, my driveway is paved, about 500' long, and on an incline (from the road it is uphill to the house). I don't know the pitch and I wouldn't call it steap, but there's certainly an incline. Now, on to the questions:

Will there be a noticeable difference between the Pro 36 and Pro 32? Basically, will the extra 4" be worth the exta money or not.

The salesman told me its an American engine, but upon reading some threads here, it seems to be Chinese made. Should I be concerned about the engine?

I know a plow truck or rider w/ a snowblower attachment might be easier, but anything decent would be out of my price range. I don't mind spending the money for a Pro 36, I just want to be sure that it will be worth the price and will last a long time.

Looking forward to hearing from some Ariens users...
 

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More important than the length of your driveway is the width. Remember, you will overlap passes a bit so it isn't a perfect division problem. Take your width and divide by 32" and 36" and see how many passes it will take to get your driveway as wide as you will be happy with. (Some people like the neat look of edge to edge and some people just want enough room to get the car through.)

Now you know how many passes are required you might as well round up to an even number. Remember, once you go out to the street you are going to have to turn around and come back. So even if the wider blower finishes it in 1 less pass, you might end up taking just as much time with the narrower blower as you will be blowing on the way back to the garage vs. just walking the machine back.

The last thing to consider is your sidewalk width. Make sure the blower isn't going to be too wide to do any walkways you will want done.

Don't forget storage space and maneuvering around parked cars and other obstacles. Bigger is not always better.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, Shryp!!

The driveway is about 8 feet wide, so to keep it even, 4 passes will be plenty with either machine. The sidewalk is short and about 3' wide, and I will have space in the garage for either blower.

Will a blower like this stand the test of time with a driveway that size? Some friends seem to think it won't, but I don't think they're very familiar with the Ariens Pro line. And to be honest, other than just researching, neither am I. I'm interested in hearing what some people here have to say about the durability of this blower....
 

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I haven't used any of the new ones, but I would think the Pro line would be what landscapers use and they probably cover quite a bit of distance.
 

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I've done some long driveways like that using a 1980s era Ariens and it takes a long time. Better than shoveling I suppose. Having run a 36 for a contractor a long time ago, I know I got a workout...and I was 20 something at the time. I preferred using the 28 machine he had, it threw better anyway.

A light duty snowplow will run you $1500 and you'd need something other than a car to attach it to, but you'll plow it clear in about 5 minutes. I have a snowsport HD that I use to keep my 1000' dead end road cleared since the plow trucks tend to hit us last(only 2 houses).

On a drive that big, I would definitely get the stoutest model I could find, that's a workout.
 

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I'd talk to the service guys at the dealer. See what they say.

For the 2014 models, Chinese made engines are the norm. Don't be worried. Use a high quality synthetic (Redline, Pennzoil Platinum) and you'll never have to worry.

How is the Ariens support network in your area? Around here (WI), Ariens is everywhere and they provide GREAT service. Super responsive.

You will be hard pressed to find a better 36" unit than the Ariens Pro. Buy it and enjoy throwing some snow.
 

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Blower size

I don't know those blowers but one other thing to consider is the tires on it. If the tires don't have traction (read that to mean ice or packed snow under the snowfall) there's a fair chance you may have to push or pull it up the incline. IMO seriously consider something like Snowhog tires and even consider getting chains ahead of time. May not need them but if you do, you'll want them 'fast' or plan on a potential workout.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the advice!

The tires are 16" x 6.5" and have some pretty meaty treads on them. However, like you suggested, I will be getting the chains just in case; they're not that expensive and great to have handy in a bind.

Should I have any concerns about using chains on a paved driveway?
 
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