Light-duty electric blowers are corded, hand held models that usually weigh seven pounds or less. Designed for use with one hand, they have a convenient push button start. They are more powerful than their gas powered counterparts.
The light duty ones are the best for blowing leaves and dirt out of driveways. They are also the most quiet since they have smaller motors and fans. One drawback to this type of blower is the constriction of movement from the power cord coming up short or getting caught in tight places.
Heavy-duty electric blowers are used for blowing leaves off of your lawn. They are more powerful than light-duty blowers. They are also heavier, louder and vibrate more. Most of this type are able to vacuum and also mulch.
Rechargeable Battery Powered
Hand-held gas blowers usually weigh between seven and twelve pounds. They are also designed for use with one hand. They have a pull-cord for starting the engine. Gas engines require tune-ups and the added hassle of mixing and storing gas and oil. They cost more and weigh more than electric.
Gas blowers require the use of ear protection. Most of them do not come with vacuum or mulch options. One benefit is that they are completely mobile. There is no cord to get tangled up in anything.
Back pack gas blowers weigh fifteen to twenty five pounds and up. The good thing is that this weight is carried on your back and shoulders instead of your arms. They are suitable for a large yard full of heavy-duty leaves. They are very noisy and more expensive than other types. They have a tendency to vibrate quite strongly.
Leaf blower and vacuum combinations are an option. Available in many models, they serve multiple functions. In addition to being a leaf blower they can also operate as a leaf vacuum or mulching. Leaves and dirt can be directed into a bag. Mulched leaves and yard debris can be composted or disposed of.
Gas powered wheeled blowers are walk-behind models. They are normally used for commercial purposes but make household leaf blowing an easy job. Since they have a four stroke engine they don’t require the mixing of gas and oil. They are quite heavy weighing one hundred pounds or more. They are hard to push uphill and maneuver through tight spaces. It takes up to eight square feet of space to store them. They are extremely loud and quite expensive.
Before buying a leaf blower you should check for local ordinances. Because of the loud noise that they generate leaf blowers have been causing a controversy. Many homeowners file noise complaints against them. Some communities ban certain types of leaf blowers or may ban them all together.
Newer technology now offers quieter blowers. You can check the manufacture’s decibel rating. If you want to test the noise, ask to hear the blower turned on before purchase. The weight is another important factor to consider.
On wheeled models, a feature you may wish to look for is an adjustable air flow deflector. This allows you to deflect the air in a direction of your choice. On hand-held models a bottom mounted air intake will keep your clothing from being sucked up into the blower.
Some models have more comfortable hand grips than others. Make sure the cut off switch is easily located. On a gas blower the presence of a primer bulb will squirt the motor to make cold-starting easier. A clear gas tank will enable you to gauge the gas level easily. Multiple speed control is helpful for blowing areas with different types of material. For example heavy-duty leaves or light grass and flower beds.
Safety should always be taken into consideration when operating a leaf blower. Proper eye and ear protection should always be worn.