Used Snowblower Recommendations

edge(6a)October 13, 2010

I would like to get some recommendations on used mid-sized two stage snow blowers between 6-8 hp. Some models I am considering are Toro 624 - 824. Ariens st624, st724, st824 , Simplicity 760 and Snapper, but I probably missed a few. On a well cared for machine, what should be a max age without having a restoration project and good parts availability? I realize this will vary by brand.

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oldwing76

Stick with any of the name brands.All are good units.Make sure that whatever you buy,you have a good dealer for parts and service nearby. dave

    Bookmark   October 15, 2010 at 7:08PM
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ewalk

Edge: I agree 100% with the previous posters advice . All the Manf . your have listed are extremely reliable . Just an adder if you wish to go one level higher both Honda and Yamaha provide very durable and reliable units in your 6-8 hp range .

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 10:15AM
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edge(6a)

Is age a big factor on any of these machines? Say 20 to 30 yrs old. I do my own work on the power equipment, I just don't want to be stuck with something without parts availability or that becomes a restoration project.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 1:58PM
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ewalk

Most definitely age plays a big factor within parts availability . However you will find much better success finding parts for older equipment within the more prominent manufacturers .

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 6:32PM
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davidnj

Snowblowers are rather simple, so it will come down to two things: construction quality and engine.

First engine. Many snowblowers had Techumseh Snow King engines; but they are out of business. Parts are available though and dealers and small engine repair places do fix them. Besides, there is little that can go wrong.

Second, is construction. Looking at new units, the Simplicity Large Frame and Pro models are built like tanks. Not sure of the trade-offs that would be in the medium frame units. 26" and up, model beginning with an "L" is large frame. I haven't seem a cheaply built Ariens; they seem alone in that their low end 'Sno-Tek by Ariens' line is also well built. I've never seen a Toro I'd consider well built. Beyond the plastic vs metal discussions (lots of plastic in the Toro), the scoop and impeller have numerous reinforcements that no other snowblower manufacturer thought necessary. Tapping on the case reveals it to be thinner. The Husqvarna 'Crown'/XLS models are also well built; their base models are pretty tinny.

Simplicity is owned by Briggs and Stratton which also owns Snapper and makes Deere. The models based on the Simplicity large frame have a black auger bearing housing on the side of the scoop and a cast iron auger gearcase.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2010 at 10:57AM
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baymee(LehighValleyPA)

Ariens was always known as a company that provided parts for it's aged/antique machines.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 5:41AM
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ewalk

Edge: Around the 8 th yr. replacement parts are usually just around the corner on most Brands , friction disc , wheel assemblies axle shafts and bearing usually begin to show wear even on routinely maintained units. Any of these components along with drive and impeller belts are normal wear and tear items that without inspection and maintenance can wear even sooner .

    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 7:14PM
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