Buying a Snow Blower? 9 Common Mistakes to Avoid

Getting ready for the winter and looking for the best snow blower? Here are 9 common mistakes to avoid.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

Getting ready for the winter and looking for the best snow blower? Here are 9 common mistakes to avoid.

Too Big: Bigger is not always better. Buying a snow blower that is too big can be a problem if you have a small backyard. Check the size and clearing path of the snow blower carefully before committing to one. Here is a small snow thrower well suited for those with a small driveway or backwyard: GreenWorks 26022 16" Corded Snow Thrower. This carefully designed model has a clearing path of 16" and it will do the job very efficiently in small to medium sized yards.

Too Small: Conversely, if you live on a farm, a small snow blower will drive you crazy. This model is excellent for big yards or parking lots: Husqvarna 961930097 2-Stage Electric Start Snow Thrower. It has a 254cc Husquarna engine and a remote chute deflector. Tires are 15 inches and cleaning path is 27 inches wide, with two stages.

Not suited for steep terrains: Steepness of terrain is also one of the common things that we overlook when we go for a snow blower shopping. Not all snow blowers are built for rugged landscapes. Here is the perfect blower for steep terrain: Snow Joe SJ625E 15 Amp Ultra Electric Snow Thrower. Snow Joe's model is perfect for quick snow pickups, regardless of terrain. It uses no gas, no oil, and needs no tune ups, so you can maintain it without too much trouble.

Not suited for heavy and wet snow: Wet and heavy snow can clog the snow thrower and make it stop or even breakdown. If you live in an area prone to heavy and wet snow, you need a heavyweight snowblower such as the 2X 945 SWE Two-Stage Electric Start Gas Snow Blower. This is really the beast when it comes to snow blowers, and it will handle any type of adverse environment you throw at it. The only shortcoming is that it can't be used in a small area, because it has a 45 inch wide clearing path.

Not suited for snow build up: Snow build up can be a problem too. If in your area snow is always below 6 inches, then you can go with a two or three stage snow blower. If it is above, you should buy a one stage blower such as the Poulan Pro 961820015 Single Stage Snow Thrower. Poulan Pro came up with an amazing and powerful model with a 136cc Poulan engine for 7.11 foot-pounds of torque. It is ideal for small households, but it can handle a load of snow, so you won't have problem with snow build up.

Difficult to Start: If you keep your snowblower out in the cold, you can run into problems starting it. A good suggestion would be to keep it in your garage. Here is the best model with a power start button for easy starting: Briggs & Stratton 1696509 Single Stage Snow Thrower. This model has a 22 inch wide clearing path with 12.5 inch intake height. It comes with an electric start button, so you will be able to start it without too much effort.

Thinking that more expensive is better:Not all expensive models are the best, and sometimes it is not worth spending your money on the most expensive unit you can afford. Here is an excellent snow blower with a decent price: Toro 38371 1500 Power Curve Snow Blower. This is the number one snow thrower brand in many ways, and it has highest power rating of snow throwers, yet can be purchased for less than $200.

No Oil In The Snowblower: If your snow blower runs out of oil, it can break. If you do not want to have to worry about changing the oil, buy a snowblower that doesn't need an oil change and that goes on an electric start, such as the Snow Joe SJ620 Electric Snow Thrower. It is ideal for middle sized driveways and walkways and it doesn't need gas, oil or tune ups, so you will be able to start it without effort, and maintain it easily.

Hard to Handle: Pick the snow blowers that are well designed and easy to handle, such as the GreenWorks 26032 12 Amp 20" Corded Snow Thrower. This is one of the easiest snow blowers to handle, and has a cord lock that conveniently holds the extension cord securely in place.

Steer clear of these common mistakes when shopping for your snow blower and you will be well prepared for the winter.