Long Island Snowblower suggestions?
#1 Nov 9, 2009 1:54 pm
I hope you can help me choose a snowblower for Long Island.
I am only a hundred and twenty pounds and need to clear a paved driveway that is about 20 x 60 feet and a walkway of about 50 feet.
Part of the driveway slopes- during the first 40 feet it slopes down about 2 feet.
When the street is plowed the plow pushs the snow to the side as it passes. This leaves a compacted ridge of snow at the bottom of the driveway.
Snowfall on Long Island is modest. We average about 30 inches total for the winter. A heavy year would be about 50. We usually get about 5 snowfalls in the 3-5 inch range, a couple in the 8 inch range, and maybe one or two in the 8-12 range. It is unusual to get anything deeper. The ridge from the plow is of course always deeper and more compacted.
I understand that a single stage, like one of the Toro models would be just fine and easy to use on light snow. But I wonder if the ridge from the plows would be a problem. I also understand the two stage machines leave a thin layer on the ground. If I understand correctly, the single stage is liked better for light snow, two stage is preferrer with heavy or deeper snow. But roughly speaking, how many inches is "light"? Where, very roughly, is the line where the two stage becomes easier to use? What about slush or icing?
For my conditions and situation, how would you decide between a single and dual stage machine, and which would you choose?
I prefer a 4 stroke, electric start engine.
What would be a good width?
What other features are important?
Is maintenance more or less with a single vs a two stage?
What Brands would you recommend?
Thanks for reading, and hopefully for a reply,