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Things to consider before purchasing a blower

Bellow is a list of things we recommend you consider before purchasing your next blower:

1. Do you require just a blower or a blower with a vacuum attachment?

Most of our customers ask us for a blower vac but really only need a blower.  Blowers are mostly used to blow down footpaths, patios, driveways, gutters etc.  The best outdoor vacuum you can own is actually your mower. We recommend edging your lawn first, then blowing the leaves and grass clippings back onto your lawn and using your mower to pick them up while you mow the lawn.

Having said this, blower vacs are still very useful for vacuuming leaves off footpaths, cleaning gutters, vacuuming outdoor living areas, picking up dog hair and vacuuming around pools.  Blower vacs are generally more expensive than blowers, so make sure you really need a blower vac before purchasing one.

2. Which type of blower do you need, petrol, electric or cordless?

Cordless blowers, while convenient and lightweight, do not have the power and air speed produced by petrol and electric models.  We recommend a cordless blower for a small yard and the blowing of light debris like grass clippings or small leaves.

There are a large variety of electric blowers on the market with differing engine sizes.  As a general rule of thumb, the larger the engine, the more air speed and higher volume of air the blower will produced. Some electric models like the Flymo Sirocco have the advantage of quickly changing between blower and vac with the touch of a button.  The maximum extension cord length we recommend is 30m, if your require a longer cord, we recommend you purchase a petrol blower.

Petrol blowers are more powerful than cordless blowers and provide more flexibility than their electric equivalents. Contrary to popular belief, petrol blowers can also be quieter that electric blowers. If your are looking for a blower to use around the pool or clean your gutters, we recommend you purchase a petrol blower.

3. How long will you use the blower for, are vibration levels important?

A common complaint from customers who use a blower for an extended amount of time (greater that 20 minutes) is the pain they experience in their wrist and forearm.  Many blowers on the market are not ergonomically designed for extended periods of use and can  inflict undue strain on the user’s wrist and arm muscles. We recommend you “try before you buy”.  Simply start the blower and hold is lightly with two or three fingers, if the blower moves vigorously from side to side you will experience greater fatigue and muscle strain when using the blower. Try to purchase a blower that is well balanced and feels smooth to operate.

4. Would you prefer a 2 stroke or a 4 stroke blower?

The advent of the small 4 stroke engine has lead to a variety of handheld products, including blowers being sold.  The vast majority of the blowers we sell however are still 2 stroke.  The reasons for this are that 2 strokes are generally much lighter than 4 strokes.  2 stroke blowers are much also cheaper to service and require servicing less often.

5. Which blower is better suited to a right handed person?

This is consideration which not many customers take into account but rue the fact they didn’t after purchasing the blower.  No matter whether you are left or right handed it is important to consider purchasing a blower with the air intake on the outside of the hand you use to hold the blower. This will prevent the blower from sucking in your clothing during use.

6. Would a back pack blower be better suited to your needs?

The good news is, back pack blowers have dropped in price.  We recommend these blowers for users with large areas.  Back pack blowers are generally much more powerful than hand held blowers, produce a far larger air flow and air volume due to a larger fan, and are more comfortable to use for an extended period of time.

7. Is the blower easy to start?

This a must for any outdoor power product you purchase.  We recommend you “try before you buy”.  All our blowers are fuelled and started for our customers in store.  If you can’t start the blower, don’t buy it.  Make sure before you buy the blower that someone has run through the starting procedure with you.

8. What is the difference between a full crank and half crank engine?

The old adage “you get what you pay for” is definitely true when it comes to comparing a full crank engine to a half crank engine. A full crank engine, while slightly more expensive, is far better than a half crank engine. A full crank engine has a better balanced engine crankshaft with bearings on both ends of the crank shaft. A half crank engine only has bearings on the load end of the crankshaft, usually requiring the engine to be run at maximum RPMs. A full crank engine can be run at different speeds, without effecting the longevity of the engine. Full crank engines also have an external starter housing and cord, allowing for easy servicing of the starter and engine.  Half crank engines have a starter cord which is internal to the engine housing and are very costly to repair.

We strongly recommend that you purchase a blower with a full crank engine.

9. How much should the blower weigh?

Most blowers are carried around during operation.  We strongly recommend that you hold and carry the blower around before purchasing it to ensure you are comfortable with the weight of the blower.  Some blowers can be purchased with carrying straps.

10. How powerful a blower do you require?

The larger the type or volume of debris you want to blow, the larger the blower you need. We strongly recommend that you “try before you buy”.  Ask the sale persons to fuel the blower and take it for a test run. Blowing wet leaves or damp grass clippings will require a stronger blower with a higher air flow and larger air volume capacity. Try to purchase a blower with a flat end nozzle.  These are far better for increases air speed.  Round nozzle are better for getting into gutters. Ideally the blower you purchase should come with both types of nozzles.

We hope you found this article useful.  Should you have any queries in relation to any of the above, please call us. We would be happy to help.


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