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Old 11-01-2021, 04:47 PM   #1
winterh
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Default riding lawn mower attachments used for snow removal

I have a fairly large yard and driveway and will be buying a riding mower. I like the zero turn models better but want to use for snow as well. In looking at snow removal attachments does anyone know the pros and cons of a snow blower vs a small plow. Also any recommendations for brand or model.
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Old 11-01-2021, 05:24 PM   #2
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Plows will build up the force against the machine resulting in a loss of traction.
Once the drive wheels lose traction, that is as far as you go.
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Old 11-01-2021, 05:34 PM   #3
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Folks do buy combination units and seem to like them.

I am from the school of folks that prefer a dedicated unit for a dedicated usage.
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Old 11-01-2021, 06:40 PM   #4
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I would buy a good snowblower instead, a large Ariens with the biggest engine you can get is my preference. Most lawn tractor snow remove equipment is not up to the snow we usually get here.
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Old 11-01-2021, 07:07 PM   #5
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It’s going to come down to the size of the riding mower - the bigger the better. I have an older Deere X500 with a blower to take care of our 150 foot driveway, which works well. If I had the storage space I’d go a bit bigger. But the storms where we get a foot or more of “New England cement” strain most anything. We also have a 24” walk behind Ariens for pathways and backup.

Plow setups are fine for smaller storms with drier snow, but once you get a pile built up its not going to move much.
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Old 11-01-2021, 07:27 PM   #6
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I thought about doing a tractor with blower attachment but decided on an Ariens Pro and am glad I did—super lightweight and easy to maneuver to get where I need to without question.

The only reason I'd go with a tractor would be if there were a (heated) cab.

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Old 11-01-2021, 08:08 PM   #7
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The snowblower/lawn tractor hybrid brings to mind the flying car concept.

Neither task benefits.
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Old 11-01-2021, 08:12 PM   #8
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Be prepared to wait….I waited three and half months for my John Deere.
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Old 11-02-2021, 12:43 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
I thought about doing a tractor with blower attachment but decided on an Ariens Pro and am glad I did—super lightweight and easy to maneuver to get where I need to without question.

The only reason I'd go with a tractor would be if there were a (heated) cab.

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That was probably a good move.

You have to spend a fortune on good attachments (way more than a top of the line walk behind) and the job you need to do with it has to be large enough to justify the investment. You might need different tires or chains too.

A lot of riding lawn mowers are 2WD and would be hard to make it work as well as a good walk behind snow blower or tractor setup for snow. Hard to imagine a snow blower on a zero turn. And they are not designed to push.
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Old 11-02-2021, 08:49 AM   #10
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Thank you all. Good suggestions. I think I am leaning towards a good quality 42 inch zero turn for mowing and a big powerful separate snow blower for winter. Many years ago I had a Craftsman snow blower and got kind of turned off by the whole idea of them. Thing weighed a ton and broke more than it worked. Will do some research and get as good a one as I can. Any recommendations on brands? Is it worth getting the treads over the tires? I saw mention of Ariens so will check them out. Just from looking online I think $3000 is more than enough to get me everything I need in a snow blower.
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Old 11-02-2021, 09:16 AM   #11
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My Ariens Pro 28" was $2300 last February, and it would absolutely be one of the ones I'd recommend looking at.

As many here know, I'm a, ahem... researcher...and the only other machine I considered was Honda, but the price and performance (I watched LOTS of comparison vids!) matched with the sentiment I have for Ariens (my father's first snowblower) made the decision easy.

It's a ridiculously good machine.

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Old 11-02-2021, 10:31 AM   #12
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Default What Think said....

...Go with the Ariens. Blows snow like a (insert naughty word here)!!

Don't get the cheap homeowner one at Home Depot or Lowes...go to United Ag & Turf for the "real" Ariens. They'll deliver it to your house, show you how to use it, and they are great for service, (they'll pick it up and bring it back)!

I have the 24" at the lake, (we get plowed, but i use the blower for touch ups), and the 30" in Bedford. They made short work of the 30+" of snow we got in the blizzard before Christmas last year.
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Old 11-02-2021, 11:12 AM   #13
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Son in law has a big Deere lawn tractor that he uses for both mowing & snow blowing. Just listening to him go thru the blower to mowing deck change and then the deck to blower swap in the fall made me say, I’ll stick to the Ariens Pro walk behind.

I second MeredithMan’s recommendation to stay away from the big box when buying. Go to the guys you’ll need when it comes time for service.


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Old 11-02-2021, 05:10 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winterh View Post
Thank you all. Good suggestions. I think I am leaning towards a good quality 42 inch zero turn for mowing and a big powerful separate snow blower for winter. Many years ago I had a Craftsman snow blower and got kind of turned off by the whole idea of them. Thing weighed a ton and broke more than it worked. Will do some research and get as good a one as I can. Any recommendations on brands? Is it worth getting the treads over the tires? I saw mention of Ariens so will check them out. Just from looking online I think $3000 is more than enough to get me everything I need in a snow blower.
I started with a Craftsman also, ergonomics made the weight and bulk of it sort of a chore. I went to the Cub Cadet and used that for years. Latest is an Ariens due to the double belt - I have a metal roof and when it unloads it tends to be the heavy wet stuff.
I haven't purchased a new one in about six years, so I the technology has probably changed.
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Old 11-02-2021, 05:49 PM   #15
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I’ve had some ups and downs with my 28” Toro, but overall had a great experience over the course of the past 16 seasons. I hope to have it last one or two more seasons.

Favorite features are a stick swivel to direct the chute while moving and a headlight.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve needed the headlight either early in the morning or later in the day. I paid roughly $1,000 for it new. Cringing at the potential price of the next one.
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Old 11-03-2021, 10:07 AM   #16
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Well, for a walk-behind, here's a tracked Honda HSM1336i 36 inch 389cc machine, at Aubuchon for a mere $8300 (https://www.hardwarestore.com/brands...SABEgJpavD_BwE)
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Old 11-03-2021, 12:28 PM   #17
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Well, for a walk-behind, here's a tracked Honda HSM1336i 36 inch 389cc machine
Well . . . my first snow blower/thrower was a 24" tracked one. One of the many brands that MTD markets. Good brand name. Purchased from a local dealer - one that will actually repair if needed.

After a coupe of years - one track came off. So with tools in hand attempted to get track back on. After an hour of twisting and turning. Got track back on.
As soon as make first turn - track comes off. Go through procedure again. This time longer. Seeking any necessary adjustments. Next time out. Track off again with first turn. Would have been easier if I had 3 hands. Next storm. Track off again. Another hour or more getting back on. Placed it Craig/list. Sold it. To a younger person that just might have 3 hands. Ran good. Always garaged.

Next purchased a wheeled 24 inch Ariens frome dealer on Route 16. And this time got heated grips/handles - an absolute must for me.

Note that I could not find any snow blower that has an engine Made in USA.
Thank you China (again) !
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Old 11-04-2021, 09:35 AM   #18
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Default Honda Snow blower

About 4 years ago I traded my 10 year old Ariens (which served me faithfully but had a lot of trouble with the hill in my yard) for tracked Honda. The Honda was much more costly but runs great and handles the hills and plow drifts effortlessly, but is less nimble in the turns. Never had a problem with the tracks. You can't go wrong if you stick to those two brands.
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