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Hi Guys,

I was looking over the forum for general info and decided to signup and ask directly.

First house and in need of a first snowblower.

Hopefully you can all make some suggestions.

Here are the specs so to speak.

Location: North East New Jersey
Area: 2 car driveway approximately 30ftx30ft. 230 feet of sidewak. 2 paths (front and back doors)
No inclines. Driveway and paths are pavers. Plenty of area to pile snow.

My goal is to get something that is just enough for my needs without being overkill. I have been to various stores and it seems the price ranges are from about $550-$1200+ for 2 stage blowers (I assume I want a 2 stage)

The least expensive option seemed to be something like this on sale for about $550: Craftsman 24" 179cc Dual-Stage Snowblower
A similar size (24") that I read about here was this one for $899: Ariens Compact 24 in. 2-Stage Electric Start Gas Snow Blower

Somewhere in the middle seemed to be the Toro and Husqvarna blowers.

So any suggestions on what I should consider?

Price wise the Ariens is at the top of what I want to spend. If I don't need that type/caliber of machine I would like to spend less.
However I don't want to save $200 and get a machine that is built poorly either.

Thanks,
iso
 

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Hi Guys,

Location: North East New Jersey
Area: 2 car driveway approximately 30ftx30ft. 230 feet of sidewak. 2 paths (front and back doors)
No inclines. Driveway and paths are pavers. Plenty of area to pile snow.
Clay pavers or concrete pavers ?
Set in mortar ?
Are the pavers all sitting flat ? Any areas where the pavers are sticking up due to tree roots or other problems ?
Clay pavers are much stronger than concrete pavers although they can be prone to chipping at the corners/edges.
Do you know what the prior homeowners used for snow removal ?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Clay pavers or concrete pavers ?
Set in mortar ?
Are the pavers all sitting flat ? Any areas where the pavers are sticking up due to tree roots or other problems ?
Clay pavers are much stronger than concrete pavers although they can be prone to chipping at the corners/edges.
Do you know what the prior homeowners used for snow removal ?
I assume they are concrete pavers. They are not set in mortar except the edges that are reinforced with mortar.
They are all pretty flat. I don't know what the prior owners used.

My father weighed in on the subject and he suggested a craftsman is all he ever needed.
He has a 15-20 year old 20" craftsman track snowblower that still works very well.
I don't know how those older craftsmans were vs todays quality.

iso
 

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Todays craftsmans are not the same machine. From your list , i would spend the xtra and get the 24" ariens.......from a dealer if possible.
 

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Im from jersey too. Right here is what you need. TRUST me you don't need a 2 stage. This Toro will throw snow faster and easier then any 2 stage. Oh and even though it says this Toro snowmaster is a two stage, its is really a 1.5 stage:) Its a transmissions wheel powered single stage and its an amazing machine

https://www.google.com/shopping/product/18138343435829791014?lsf=seller:8740,store:12085083161561212849&prds=oid:564119338099218252&q=toro+snowmaster&hl=en&ei=ahVUWLq_HcODwQS9ybegCQ&lsft=cm_mmc:Shopping-_-LIAs-_-D28I-_-206125346&lsft=gclid:COic6p-Q-dACFY5LDQodbcQELQ
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Im from jersey too. Right here is what you need. TRUST me you don't need a 2 stage. This Toro will throw snow faster and easier then any 2 stage. Oh and even though it says this Toro snowmaster is a two stage, its is really a 1.5 stage:) Its a transmissions wheel powered single stage and its an amazing machine
Thats listed at $749. Is it a better value than a 2 stage Ariens at $899. Thats a difference of $150.

Thanks
iso
 

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I have virutally the same question as iso, so this was a good thread to find.

Would like to be in the $700-1200 range. I'm in Maryland and have similar snowfall as him. Paved 2 car driveway and some sidewalks with bricks set in concrete. Want something that will be reliable over the years and is easy enough for my wife to use.

I see the last recommendation for the SnowMaster which completely conflicts with another thread on this forum slamming it as small and cheaply built. ? On the other hand, if it works, it seems easy to operate.

I'm open to suggestions. Little overwhelmed with all the options out there and am not sure what reviews to believe...
Thanks in advance for any tips.
 

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Im from jersey too. Right here is what you need. TRUST me you don't need a 2 stage. This Toro will throw snow faster and easier then any 2 stage. Oh and even though it says this Toro snowmaster is a two stage, its is really a 1.5 stage:) Its a transmissions wheel powered single stage and its an amazing machine

https://www.google.com/shopping/product/18138343435829791014?lsf=seller:8740,store:12085083161561212849&prds=oid:564119338099218252&q=toro+snowmaster&hl=en&ei=ahVUWLq_HcODwQS9ybegCQ&lsft=cm_mmc:Shopping-_-LIAs-_-D28I-_-206125346&lsft=gclid:COic6p-Q-dACFY5LDQodbcQELQ
I would definitively look at the Toro as NJHonda mentions and I am a Ariens partisan.
Though if you go Ariens I would take a look at their Tek line as they are reviewed very good and in your price range.

Arien Sno Tek 24" > https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwjS2J-wpvnQAhUN02MKHXEMDc0QFggaMAA&url=http://www.sno-tek.net/products/sno-tek-24.html&usg=AFQjCNHaaOILI0HlvzIhpppzUNFR-rSLEQ&sig2=fUlvDyy5lqnTzIS7uEHd3g&bvm=bv.142059868,d.cGc

Toro Snowmaster 824 QXE >https://www.toro.com/en-CA/homeowner/snow-blowers/snowmaster-824-qxe-36003
 

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Another Jersey guy here, originally from Bergen County now in the hills of Sussex. Lots of opinions, and you'll have to decide for yourself, but since you've asked...

I'm 68 and just bought my second blower, an Ariens Deluxe24. I bought my first blower in 1995, a Toro 724. At the time, the Toro - a quality machine I might add - was all I figured I needed. It served me very, very well. No problems or repairs in all those years. BUT, I got older, and found using the old faithful more work than it had been, especially the EOD area. This year, it refused to run. No adjustment, fuel, or cleaning worked. Wife said, get a new machine, but don't just settle, thus the Ariens. I'll swap out the Toro's carb, and it'll be used on our rear patios, which I always did by hand.

My long winded point is, if you can afford it, get something larger than you think you'll ever need. Better to have it available if you ever need it than to be wishing for it!

And a quality machine like a Toro or Ariens will last if maintained and serviced properly.
 

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Although I have never used one, the Toro SnowMaster seems right up your alley. Check out the review on Movingsnow.com.

With that said, Mikey517 has a philosophy that many people tend to follow and never regret. Buy the biggest, baddest machine you can afford. On those days that only come once every few years, you will appreciate the fact that you have the extra HP/Size/Reliability that comes with spending more $$$$.
 

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I forgot to mention, Lowes just started carrying Ariens blowers. The Deluxe 24 was $999. with 6 mos no interest financing! And I have a dealer nearby that services Ariens regardless of where purchased!
 

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I just replaced my snow blower and was going through the same issues with analysis paralysis. Used wasn't a good option for me because I didn't want to buy into someone else's problems. I can fix automotive issues but apparently my MTD variant requires witchcraft to function properly. I also question the value of spending too much $$$ on a 10+-year-old MTD product. I ended up purchasing an Ariens 24 Deluxe. I didn't want to spend that much but the schmekel heads on this forum scared me away from the other brands.

For what it's worth I have a 120ft driveway that is 2 cars and then widens to 3+ cars near the garage.
 

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why not buy used with low hours for a third of the price? ( or less )

with patience you can find an excellent used blower even though this time of year is not the best time. you may find someone who is moving to Florida or Arizona.

We recently picked up a Honda in immaculate shape from a person moving to Sacramento for $200.
 

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Another which

How about GO BIG or GO HOME. :D

I know the feeling guy's. I researched this to death before buying. :question:
 

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a 32" honda or the like, is most likely overkill, the hybrid toro could be perfect in most situations.
a good compact 2 stage machine will cover most situations.
its better to have it and not need it , than to need it and not have it . jmo
 
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