Gas powered leaf blowers are gaining popularity with consumers who want to do some work around the house. The range of products available is huge, and the prices are very competitive. Leaf blowers can be purchased in many places, from home improvement stores to warehouse stockists. It can be a bit daunting at first to make up your mind as to which product to buy.
The first thing to decide is whether you want a two cycle or four-cycle gas powered leaf blower. The price will probably differ between the two – some two-cycle units are actually more expensive than some four cycle ones. The main reason is that the more powerful the engine is, the larger the fuel load is required. A two-cycle unit will be able to get a reasonable work done, but will need to charge very fast from a petrol tank.
The better gas powered blowers tend to have engines of various capacities. A two-stroke version will need less power, so will generally be cheaper. The other thing to decide is what type of engine you would like – internal combustion engines (also known as an inboard or outboard engine) tend to be the cheapest option, but also have the smallest fuel consumption. Turbo electric driven engines tend to be slightly more expensive, but also give much better power and quicker starting times. If you only need a small electric version then it might be worthwhile to go for the lower priced two stroke units, as they do tend to be more efficient.
Leaf blowers come in many different sizes and capacities, and this makes them more expensive to buy. The extra power supplied by the larger engines need to be accommodated elsewhere, and this means that the blower may be smaller than you first thought. If you want to get a good deal on a gas blower, then the best way to do so is to find a dealer who specialises in these devices, as they will understand your needs more accurately and can help to tailor a device to suit. Some manufacturers will sell to consumers regardless of experience, but many of the large manufacturers will only sell to those who have some kind of experience with blowers.
Another thing to consider is whether you need the extra kick that larger leaf blowers offer. They generally kick more forcefully, which can be useful for digging up weeds and small obstacles. However, the kicks are also usually reserved for larger gardens and areas and are not suitable for digging up shallow soils. If you don’t have to clear large areas, then a two cycle or four-cycle backpack unit will do just fine, as they can also be fitted with extensions.
The better gas powered blowers tend to use a four cycle or two stroke engines. These are very powerful machines and can work at a much higher speed than a two stroke engine. This means that these blowers offer the ability to move greater volumes of soil at one go, and can work to their full potential. These blowers are much more expensive than other models, but will last twice as long. Although a two-stroke engine will get you up and running sooner, it will cost you far more in the long run and will cost you more gas if you use it frequently.
Something else to look out for when buying a gas powered leaf blower is whether it has some kind of safety measure. Many models come standard with a leaf blower safety switch, meaning that they can be operated whilst the engine is running. There are a number of different types of safety switches, which include a push button that can be attached to the remote, and some models have a clutch, which means that the machine can be operated even when the engine isn’t running. Padded straps can be added to these models to ensure that they don’t move around when the leaf blower is being used, and they will often include cruise control as standard, so that the user can slow down the unit without having to use the accelerator.
If money’s not a problem, then you could opt for something like a dual action leaf blower, or a gas blower with a detachable ex-urb kit. Dual action units are generally better value because the blades spin at the same speed, so that you can work to your maximum efficiency without overstressing the motor. They are also easier to clean. The ex-urb kit on a dual action unit will remove the need for a belt and allow you to work with a much cleaner exhaust system. Although these models can be more expensive, many gardeners find that they are worth the extra expense.