Briggs & Stratton 1697116 Review

Brief Summary: This post is a comprehensive look at the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 Single-Stage Gas-Powered Snow Blower, and whether or not it worth purchasing.

After reviewing a myriad of different snowblowers, all of which bear their own distinct style, features, capabilities, and setbacks, I have to admit that I'm getting quite exhausted with all these supposedly top-of-the-line snow blowers.

This is not me saying that each of them doesn't have their respective strengths which make them worthy of looking into.

This is me saying that sometimes, a simple person like me likes to get back to the basics.

A snowblower that does what it says and is free from any of these marketing fluffs that the more "modern" snow blowers have in their makeup.

In the Briggs & Stratton 1697116, we might just have such a machine.

I'm talking about a no-nonsense kind of snow blower that can plow unapologetically through the roughest winter conditions -- doing what it says it does and doing it well.

Are these just a pipe-dream from a tired snowblower reviewer, or is the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 really a machine that can make me proud to own?

Well, reviewing snowblowers is exactly what we're here to do so let's get it started!

Briggs & Stratton 1697116 Features

  • The engine. The engine is quite an impressive piece of machinery if I do say so myself. Capable of powering the augers to plowing a 22-inch wide and 13-inch deep cleaning in its wake. It has 127cc of displacement and is strong enough to throw snow at a distance of about 33 feet. None of this is particularly surprising since the engine is gas-powered. Whether you love them or hate them, gas-powered snow blowers are generally more powerful than electric snowblowers. They also come free of the need for cordage and to be constantly attached to an outlet. For all its glory, there is one downside to the engine which we'll get into later.
  • Quick-adjust deflector. This is by no means that big of a deal but it's definitely a nice little touch to have on an already pretty solid snowblower. The quick-adjust deflector means you can easily change the height and throwing distance of the chute with a simple squeeze of the chute-mounted handle. Another note to make is that although this might be the first time I'm talking about this feature, it is by no means exclusive to the Briggs & Stratton 1697116. Many snowblowers, both gas and electric, have this feature -- at least the ones worth considering.
  • Remote-controlled chute mounted on the handle. Another nice little feature of the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 is that most, if not all of its controls, can be found right on the handlebar. This includes the remotely controlled chute. This offers a greater level of control and lets you simply start the machine be on your merry way.
  • Rubber-edged augers. Most snowblower users have experienced this at some point: you're going about your snow-blowing business and everything seems to be going pretty way. Then when the season changes and the snow melts you find that your driveway floor is scratched up. The steel blades of the snowblower seem to have gotten way too close to the pavement, leaving marks and dulling themselves in the process. Rest assured that nothing like that is likely to happen with the Briggs & Stratton 1697116's rubber-edged augers. These things can cut through snow down to the pavement without leaving any marks. Being made of rubber also makes it less likely to wear and rust over time.

Additional Features

  • Though the unit is not self-propelled, once the augers start plowing it's pretty easy to maneuver.
  • The handlebars are also foldable, allowing for much easier storage in your garage. That being said, at 84 pounds this is one heavy boy which might be a problem if you have a smaller frame or aren't very strong. You're really gonna have to push to get a machine of this size and weight to go where you want. But hey, it makes for a great workout!

Pros & Cons

Pros

Here are some of the reasons I've found that make the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 a worthy purchase:

  • Able to handle harsh winter conditions. Winter has been quite brutal these past few months. Sadly, climate change has made so that our winters are bitterly colds as the summers are extremely hot. With that comes snowfall that seems to constantly break records set by the previous year. If you are one of those people affected by such weather then a snowblower is pretty much a must-have. A machine of this caliber has the power to deal with the very worst of winter conditions. Of that, there is no doubt.
  • Great for larger properties. If you have a rather large property and need a snowblower that can keep up with rather large amounts of snow on an annual basis, the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 is as good a snowblower as any. It can plow through 12 to 13 inches of snow quite effortlessly and has enough maneuverability to make quick of large amounts of snow spread about over a large area. It might not be the most powerful gas-powered snowblower in the market, it's still a good option considering its price.
  • Auger blades cut through the snow without damaging the pavement. As stated in the features, the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 sports rubber-edged augers that make wear-resistant while also protecting the surface of the pavement you're treading over.
  • Most of the controls are situated at the handlebar. Probably one of the most convenient things about the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 is that all the buttons, switches, and levels you need to control the whole machine are located on the handlebar. This makes it much easier to work the snowblower and maintains the momentum. It almost gives the feeling of controlling a mini tractor. Again, it's not a feature that's exclusive to the Briggs & Stratton 1697116. Many other snowblowers have their controls on their handlebars and I am eternally grateful that that's a thing that they're doing now. It's always a nice little touch of convenience to have.
  • Affordable for a gas-powered snowblower. When it comes to snow blowers, the gas-powered kinds are usually the ones on the pricier side of things. They are pure mechanical hunks of metal that are built to last and cut through snow like a hot knife through butter. Despite that, the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 is surprisingly one of the more affordable gas-powered snowblowers out there. They still might be on the pricey end for some people, but as far as the features and capabilities go, this is by no means a bad deal!

Cons

With every pro, there's a con. Here are some of the things that might make you think twice before getting the Briggs & Stratton 1697116:

  • Can make quite the noise. A common problem with any gas-powered snowblowers, the noise can sometimes be deafening especially for people who aren't used to the sounds these powerful machines can make. It's why I generally never advise homeowners to use their snowblowers at night unless they live in the middle of nowhere, that even includes electric-powered snowblowers. With the Briggs & Stratton 1697116, I will say that it can be one of the louder snowblowers I've encountered. Keep this in mind when you think about getting it for your property.
  • Recoil start. Anyone who's read my reviews before would know that I would always champion a machine that's a quick start. I have had many a difficult time battling with recoil start engines and I'm not too happy that I have to deal with that in the Briggs & Stratton 1697116. Though I haven't had any difficulty yet, it's still an inconvenience I could personally live without. If you like the whole drama of pulling on a cord to get a machine to start then this might not be a con for you. But if you're like me and you simply want a machine to start and go, then the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 might not be what you're looking for.

Review & Final Verdict

Our Score
 

Honestly, the Briggs & Stratton 1697116 is a pretty damn good snowblower, and also my #1 recommended SINGLE-STAGE snow blower.

If you're not needing to move a TON of snow and don't need a two-stage snow blower, then the B&S 1697116 is a great choice!

As I've said, gas-powered snowblowers are stronger and more efficient than their electric counterparts but one should know that noise and fumes are a necessary tradeoff. 

Take stock of your property's needs as well as the cost of gas and oil before investing in a machine like this. California's Proposition 65 applies to this machine.

It might not be the best in the market right now (I think no snowblower can really claim to be the best in the market), but it's still a solid and well-priced option for a person looking for a machine that can get the job done.

And that was pretty much everything and anything you needed to know about the Briggs & Stratton 1697116.

For more amazing single-stage snow blowers, check out the Snow Joe SJ625E, and the Briggs & Stratton 1022E 22 Inch Snow Blower.

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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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