Looking for a snow blower? Some new electric models no longer need to be plugged in
Those looking for a snow blower to clear their driveways may want to consider an electric model.
Consumer Reports has been testing battery-powered snow blowers for the past six years and found electric models are improving.
“Battery-powered snow blowers are really nipping at the heels of comparably sized gas models, and they offer advantages that gas snow blowers can’t match,” said David Trezza, who oversees Consumer Reports tests.
Ryobi Canada demonstrated a Ryobi 40V 24-inch electric battery-operated snow blower for CTV News Toronto.
Becky Yan, Director of Marketing with Ryobi Canada, said that an electric battery-powered snow blower does not require the fuel, oil and maintenance of a gas-powered snow blower.
“With any gas products similar to your car, you have to change the spark plugs, change the oil, and do all sorts of maintenance with the engine. With this battery technology, there is zero maintenance except for keeping the batteries charged," Yan said.
The model that was demonstrated had a push-button start, was self-propelled, and was able to clear about 20 centimetres of snow from a driveway without too much effort.
Since the snow blower comes with four batteries, Ryobi says this model can run for about 40 minutes, which should be enough to clear an average-sized driveway.
“You really shouldn’t have an issue, but we have two extra battery slots, so you could swap out batteries if you do run out of power,” said Yan.
The Ryobi snow blower model tested sells for $2,198 plus taxes. Replacement batteries are $264 each and come with a three-year warranty.
Battery power may not be for everyone, but it's another option to help you clear the snow. As battery technology improves, Yan said it’s likely more home improvement tools will make the switch from gas power.
"Definitely snow blowers, lawn mowers, all of your bigger equipment that you need for home maintenance, will all be battery powered," Yan said.
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