What Size Snow Blower Do I Need?

A snowblower is a great investment that can save you a world of hurt with a snow-covered driveway. Instead of shoveling thick sheets of snow after a blizzard for hours, why not simply take a snowblower and be done with the whole chore in just a few hours?

With that being said, it can be difficult to select the right snowblower with all the many different types and models available in the market. From different features to sizes, how can you pick the right one if you have never dealt with snow blowers before?

Luckily, we’re here to help. If you’re trying to settle on the perfect size for a snowblower, then we’re here to give you all the facts. In this article, we’ll discuss all the different sizes of snowblowers and what each size brings to the table in terms of dealing with snow on your property. 

What Size of Snowblower Do I Need?

There are a few things to consider when purchasing a snowblower. The size of the snowblower, the type of snow, and the terrain are all important factors to keep in mind.

The size of the snowblower is one of the more important considerations though. This is because it needs to be able to clear your terrain of snow with ease and efficiency. If you have a long driveway or large front/back yarn, you will need a bigger snowblower to ensure you’re not shoveling snow for hours. 

The size of snow is also important when dealing with certain types of snowfall. If you live in an area where it snows a lot, you will need a snowblower that can handle the heavy snowfall. The terrain is also something to consider. If you have a lot of hills or uneven ground, you will need a more compact snowblower that can handle those conditions.

In the market, you’re likely to encounter 3 types of snowblowers: single stage snow blowers and two stage snow blower, or three stage snow blower. Knowing the differences between each of the types can help you make an informed decision on what you’ll likely need.

Single-stage Snowblower

Single Stage Snow BlowerSnow Joe SJ625E Review

Single-stage snowblowers are typically used for light snowfall and on surfaces that are not too icy or snow-packed. If you're looking for a straightforward snowblower that can handle even very light snowfall, you need a single-stage snowblower. These snowblowers are designed to clear small areas quickly and efficiently though they are not ideal if you’re looking to handle slopes and other tough terrains.

They have a clearing width that can range from 18-22 inches. Typically, the auger directs the snow through a discharge shoot and launches it about 35 feet away to one side. In some models, the auger makes direct contact with the ground, providing some forward push action. Overall, these are great for small properties with only light levels of snow. They should also be used on level ground with no obstructions that can damage the auger.

Our Top 3 Single-Stage Snow Blowers

Briggs & Stratton 1697116 Snow Thrower, Single Stage

Briggs & Stratton 1697116

Single StageSnow Thrower

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

For those with a small or medium lot that don't need a two-stage snow blower, then the B&S 1697116 is a great choice & my #1 recommend single-stage blower!

Briggs & Stratton 1022E 22-Inch Single-Stage Snow Blower with Push Button Electric Start

Briggs & Stratton 1022E Single-Stage Snow Blower

Overall Rating: 4.2/5

The Briggs & Stratton 1022e has a 22-inch wide clearing path with a 12.5-inch intake height.  It's powered by 208cc engine with 9.50-foot pounds of torque

Snow Joe SJ625E Electric Single Stage Snow Thrower | 21-Inch | 15 Amp Motor

Snow Joe SJ625E Electric Single Stage Snow Thrower

Overall Rating: 4.3/5

The Snow Joe SJ625e features the same powerful 15 amp motor as it's bigger brother the SJ627e and can give you 21" wide and 12" deep paths in one pass!

Two-Stage Snowblower

two stage snow blower

A double-stage snowblower is a type of snowblower that uses two impellers to move snow through the machine and discharge it from the chute. The first stage impeller scoops up the snow and pushes it towards the second stage impeller, which then propels the snow out of the chute.  Another great thing about the double-stage snowblower is that it offers a wide range of intake sizes. The clearing size for double-stage snowblowers can range from 20 to 38 inches. 

Double-stage snowblowers are typically more powerful than single-stage snowblowers and can handle heavier snowfall. This means that if you have a medium-sized yard, then a double-stage snowblower is the one to get. They are also usually more expensive. If you live in an area that gets a lot of heavy snow, a double-stage snowblower may be a good option for you. However, if you only get occasional light snowfalls, a single-stage snowblower may be sufficient.

Our Top 3 Two-Stage Snow Blower Recommendations

Husqvarna ST224 24-Inch 208cc Two Stage Electric Start Snow Blower

Husqvarna ST224 24-Inch 208cc Two Stage Snow Blower

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Husqvarna ST224 is our #1 choice due to it's self-propelled 208 cc 4-stroke engine, power steering, and it's ability to clear out just about all types of snow, quickly.

PowerSmart Snow Blower, 212cc 2-Stage Gas Snow Blower Thrower

PowerSmart PSSAM24 Snow Blower, 212cc 2-Stage Gas Snow Blower

Overall Rating: 4.3/5

The PSSAM24 is a 2-stage gas snow blower, featuring a self-propelled (6-forward and 2-backwards speed) engine

Ariens ST28DLE Deluxe SHO 28 in. Two-Stage Electric Start Gas Snow Blower

Ariens Deluxe 28 SHO 28 in. Two-Stage Electric Start Gas Snow Blower

Overall Rating: 4.3/5

Ariens Deluxe is a snowblower to get when you're waging a fierce war with the elements of winter, not when you need a little shoveling done.

Triple-Stage Snowblower

three stage snow blower

The triple-stage snow blower is one of the most powerful and efficient snow blowers available on the market. It's able to clear large areas of snow quickly and easily, making it perfect for those who live in areas that receive a lot of snowfall each year. Triple-stage snow blowers are also great for clearing driveways, sidewalks, and patios. If you're looking for a snow blower that can handle the heaviest of snowfalls, then the triple-stage snow blower is the perfect choice for you.

Although like the double-stage snowblower, this type also sports 2 augers — one for scooping up the snow and another for throwing it out the discharge chute — there is a key difference that separates the two. The triple-stage snowblower brings an accelerator and adds power to the discharge, meaning it burns through the snow at a quicker pace. 

Generally, a triple-stage snowblower will have the same clearing width as a double-stage snowblower. What you’re paying for is extra efficiency and speed. If you live on a property that’s over 60 feet long and experiences heavy amounts of snow during the winters, then a triple-stage snowblower is the machine for you.

How to choose the right size?

There are a few things you need to consider when selecting the right size of snowblower for your needs. 

First, consider the width of the snowblower. The wider the snowblower, the more snow it can move in one pass and save you time in the process. The second is to consider the height of the snowblower. The taller the snowblower, the more snow it can move in one pass and the easier time it will have when dealing with slopes or uneven terrain. 

Finally, consider the price of the snowblower. The more expensive the snowblower, the more features it will have and the more durable it will be. That being said, it is always important to stay within budget and not get an overly powerful machine for light amounts of snow. There are some other things you also need to keep in mind when getting a snow blower that we’ll talk about more below.

Other things to keep in mind when getting a snowblower

Here are some useful things to keep in mind that’ll help you make the right decision:

How large an area do you need to cover?

The size of your space is one of the most important factors to consider when trying to select the right-sized snowblower. On one hand, you don’t want to overkill it with a machine that’s too powerful for such a small space. On the other hand, you also don’t want to get too small of a machine that is inadequate for the job. 

Single-stage blowers are perfect for narrow walkways and single-cared driveways. Although this does not mean it cannot handle larger properties, it might strain a bit when trying to handle larger volumes of snow. 

If your yard is 50-60 feet long, then you’re likely going to need something like a double- or triple-stage snowblower. These might be on the more pricier end of snowblowers but the power and efficiency they bring to the table is something you’ll be thankful for when the winters are extra harsh.

What depth of snowblower do you need?

The depth of the snowblower you need depends on the amount of snowfall in your area. If you live in an area with a lot of snow, you'll need a deeper snowblower. A good rule of thumb is to get a snowblower that's at least 10 inches deep. That way, you'll be able to clear a path that's at least 8 inches wide.

If you live in an area with light snowfall, you can get away with a shallower snowblower. A depth of 6 inches should be sufficient. However, keep in mind that a shallower snowblower will take longer to clear a given path.

If you have snowfall that’s around 12 inches or lower in thickness, then a single or double-stage snowblower would be perfect for the job. If you experience more snowfall than this, then a triple-stage should do the trick. If you only have to deal with a small property but experience heavy snowfall, then a double-stage snowblower should be the perfect median option between the three.

Electric vs Gas-powered snowblower?

  • Gas snowblowers are more powerful and can handle more snow, but they're also more expensive and require more maintenance.
  • Electric snowblowers are less powerful but much easier to use and maintain.

When deciding between the two types, budget is likely going to play a big part. It is worth noting though that gas-powered snowblowers tend to last longer than electric ones. So despite being more expensive, they’re an investment that’ll definitely be used for many more years to come.

If you're looking for a powerful snowblower that can handle heavy snowfall, then a gas snowblower is the way to go. However, if you're looking for an easy-to-use and low-maintenance option, then an electric snowblower is the better choice. 

Our Top 3 Snow Blowers, Period

Husqvarna ST224 24-Inch 208cc Two Stage Electric Start Snow Blower

Husqvarna ST224 24-Inch 208cc Two Stage Electric Start Snow Blower

Overall Rating: 4.3/5

The Briggs & Stratton 1022e Single-Stage Snow Blower features a Push Button Electric Start, a 950 snow series 208cc engine with 9.50-foot-pounds of torque.

PowerSmart Snow Blower, 212cc 2-Stage Gas Snow Blower Thrower

PowerSmart Snow Blower, 212cc 2-Stage Gas Snow Blower Thrower

Overall Rating: 4.2/5

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Briggs & Stratton Single-Stage Snow Blower, Push Button Start

Overall Rating: 4.3/5

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In Conclusion…

And that’s all you needed to know about what size snowblower you need! Whether you end up getting a single-stage electric snowblower or a gas-powered triple-stage snowblower, we have no doubt that you’ll enjoy the ease and convenience that these machines provide.

Getting them the right size only means making the smartest long-term choice with regard to dealing with future snow. Once you’re using the perfect snowblower, you’re sure to be blown away!

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About the Author Madison Meyers

Madison Meyers is a Minneapolis native who knows what it takes to survive in the land of 10,000 lakes.

She’s made it her mission to make sure people never have to shovel again by combining her love for snow with the entrepreneurial skills she picked up at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.

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