A Snow Thrower vs a Snow Blower: Which is Better for You?

Last Updated on December 27, 2022 by Jason Nguyen

When the snow starts to fall, you have to make a decision: do you want to buy a snow thrower or a snow blower? Both machines have their pros and cons, and it can be tough to decide which one is right for you.

In this blog post, we will compare the two machines and help you decide which one is best for your needs.

What is a snow thrower?

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A snow thrower is a machine or device used to clear and remove snow from surfaces such as pavement, driveways, sidewalks, and other areas.

It is operated with either electric power or gas engines to propel itself through the snow while rotating blades break up the snow and push it out of the way.

Most modern snow blowers have an auger, which is a rotating blade that helps to break up the snow and move it away from the area.

Some models even have special features like adjustable blades for different types of surfaces or an ice-breaker feature for clearing hard packed snow and ice.

Snow throwers are typically used in areas where large amounts of snow accumulate quickly and pose a safety hazard.

They are designed to make the task of snow removal easier, faster and more efficient than manual shoveling. Snow throwers can save time and energy, especially in areas where large amounts of snow are common.

How does a snow thrower work?

Snow throwers are devices that use a combination of centrifugal force and fast-moving blades to quickly clear away snow from an area. The device consists of a handle or control panel, an auger, and an impeller.

The auger is the first part of the machine and works by scooping up large amounts of snow at a time. It consists of a rotating blade that scoops up the snow and pushes it toward the impeller, which is located just behind the auger.

The impeller has a series of blades that spin at high speed to break apart chunks of snow and fling them away from the machine.

The handle or control panel allows you to adjust the speed of the auger and impeller, as well as the direction in which they are pointing. This makes it easy to quickly and efficiently clear away snow from an area.

When should you use a snow thrower?

Snow throwers are most useful when dealing with moderate to heavy snowfall. If your area receives less than 6 or 8 inches of snow in a storm, you may not find it necessary to use a snow thrower.

In areas that receive deep or wet snows, having a snow blower can be invaluable since they can break through hard packed and wet snows, making it easier to clear pathways and driveways.

For those living in areas where strong winds accompany storms, a snow thrower can also help you quickly clear large amounts of drifting snow. Some models are even equipped with headlight for clearing after dark.

Pros of using a snow thrower:


Snow throwers are incredibly convenient. They drastically reduce the time and energy required to clear away snow from driveways, pathways, and sidewalks during winter months.

This allows for more time to be spent on leisure activities or simply relaxing indoors rather than shoveling snow.


Snow throwers are much more efficient than shovels in terms of the amount of snow that can be cleared in a given amount of time.

They are designed to move large amounts of snow quickly so that less time is spent on clearing driveways and sidewalks.


There are numerous types of snow throwers available on the market, from electric-powered models to large-scale gas-powered machines.

This allows for users to choose a machine that best suits their needs in terms of clearing away snow from their property.

Ease of Use

Snow throwers are relatively easy to use, making them ideal for individuals who do not have the time or physical ability to shovel snow by hand.

Most models are designed with an intuitive control system, making it easy to operate the machine and clear away snow in a timely and efficient manner.


Using a snow thrower is much safer than manually shoveling large amounts of snow. Snow throwers help to reduce the potential for injury from straining muscles or slipping on ice and snow.

Additionally, the machines can help to reduce the risk of suffering from frostbite while shoveling in cold temperatures.


Snow throwers are built to endure long-term use, making them an ideal investment for individuals who live in climates with heavy snowfall each winter. The machine is designed to stand up to the elements and will last for many years with proper maintenance.


Although snow throwers can be pricey depending on the model, they are a cost-effective choice in the long run when compared with hiring a service to clear away snow from driveways or sidewalks.

Additionally, some models may be powered by electricity, which is often more cost-efficient than using gas.

Cons of using a snow thrower:


Although snow throwers are a convenient way to clear away snow from driveways and pathways, they can be an inconvenience when it comes to storage.

Many models require special care and attention in order to ensure that they are properly stored, which may take up additional space in the home or garage.


Snow throwers can be noisy when in use, which may be a disruption to neighbors or those living nearby.

This could be an issue for individuals who live in close-knit communities or urban areas where noise must be kept to a minimum.


Most snow thrower models require regular maintenance in order to ensure that they are in proper working condition. This may require additional time, money, and effort when compared with simply using a shovel for clearing away snow from driveways or sidewalks.

Risk of Injury

Although snow throwers are generally safe to use, there is still a risk of injury if the machine is not properly operated.

It is important to always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully in order to prevent any potential injuries from occurring when using a snow thrower.

Environmental Impact

Snow throwers can produce air pollutants which could have an adverse effect on the environment, especially if used for extended periods of time. This is something that should be considered when making the decision to use a snow thrower.

Ineffective in Deep Snow

Some models of snow throwers are not built to handle large amounts of snow, making them ineffective if deep drifts have developed on driveways or sidewalks.

Additionally, some machines may struggle with wet and heavy snow which can clog the chute and reduce the efficiency of the machine.

Limited Clearing Range

Snow throwers may be limited in terms of their ability to clear away snow from larger areas, as most machines are designed for smaller driveways and pathways only. This could make them less effective if used on a large property or lawn.

Is a snow thrower worth it?

Ultimately, the decision to purchase a snow thrower depends on the individual. For those who experience heavy snowfall each winter and have difficulty shoveling by hand, investing in a snow thrower may be the best option. However, it is important to weigh all of the pros and cons of using a snow thrower before making a purchase.

What is a snow blower?

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A snow blower is an electrically or gasoline powered machine that is used to remove snow from a surface, such as a driveway or sidewalk.

Snow blowers come in different sizes and designs with some having working widths of 18 inches while others can be more than 36 inches wide.

Snow blowers typically have three primary components: the motor, auger, and impeller. The motor powers the auger which rotates to pull the snow into the machine and then the impeller throws it out through the chute.

Snow blowers can be used to quickly remove large amounts of snow from large areas, making them ideal for commercial use as well as residential purposes.

They are also safer and more efficient than shoveling snow by hand. With the right maintenance and care, a snow blower can provide many years of reliable service.

Related: 6 Different Types of Snow Blowers: Which One is Right for You?

How does a snow blower work?

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Snow blowers are machines that work by using an auger, impeller, and chute to move and blow snow from one place to another. The auger is a rotating blade that scoops up the snow and pushes it into the machine’s impeller.

The impeller is a spinning fan-like device which generates the airflow to move the snow. The chute then directs the air and snow out of the machine in a particular direction.

Snow blowers are very efficient and can make it much easier to clear large amounts of snow in a short amount of time.

They come in many sizes, from small handheld machines up to larger models that are mounted on tractors or trucks.

When using a snow blower, it is important to take safety measures such as wearing protective eye and ear gear and keeping hands away from the auger and impeller.

Additionally, make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions when operating or maintaining your machine.

With proper use of a snow blower, you can greatly reduce the time needed to clear your driveway or other areas of snow.

When should you use a snow blower?

Snow blowers are a great tool for removing large amounts of snow from your property quickly. If the area you need to clear is over two inches deep, then a snow blower would be the most efficient option.

Additionally, if the snow has been packed down or drifted by wind, a snow blower can help break it up and make it easier to remove.

For maximum efficiency, look for a snow blower with adjustable speed settings, as this will help you to control how fast or slow the machine works and therefore, how much snow is removed in one pass.

Additionally, if the area that needs clearing is quite large and would take an unreasonable amount of time to complete with a shovel, then a snow blower can save you time and energy.

Finally, if the area has complex terrain or obstacles such as benches or trees, a snow blower is equipped to navigate these areas much more easily than a shovel. Overall, a snow blower is an ideal tool for quickly removing large amounts of snow in hard-to-reach places.

Pros of using a snow blower:

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  1. Fast: Snow blowers are incredibly fast at clearing away snow, regardless of whether you have a manual or electric model. You can get the job done in no time and not have to worry about shoveling for hours on end.
  2. Easy to use: Working with a snow blower is much easier than using a shovel. All you have to do is press the buttons and pull a few levers, depending on your model, and you’re good to go.
  3. Convenient: Snow blowers are incredibly convenient because they can be used in any type of snowfall or conditions. Whether it’s light or heavy snow, wet or dry, a snow blower can handle it all with ease.
  4. Saves time: Using a snow blower saves you time because it’s much faster than shoveling. This leaves you with more free time to do the things that you enjoy or need to do, rather than having to spend hours shoveling away snow.
  5. Safe: Snow blowers are much safer than shovels because they remove the risk of you injuring your back or arms while shoveling. They also reduce the risk of slips and falls that can occur due to icy conditions.
  6. Reliable: Most snow blowers are reliable and long lasting, meaning that you won’t have to worry about them breaking down in the middle of a snowstorm.
  7. Environmentally friendly: Electric snow blowers are much more environmentally friendly than gas powered models, as they don’t produce any emissions. This makes them a great choice for anyone who is looking to be kinder to the environment.

Cons of using a snow blower:

  1. Expensive: Snow blowers can be quite expensive, especially if you opt for a gas powered model. Electric models may be slightly cheaper, but they still require an initial investment.
  2. Need to store: Snow blowers can take up a lot of space when not in use, so you’ll need to make sure you have a place to store it when the snow melts.
  3. Noise pollution: Gas powered snow blowers can be quite loud, which can be an annoyance for your neighbors.
  4. Maintenance: Snow blowers will require some maintenance in order to keep them running smoothly and ensure they last as long as possible. This may include changing the oil, checking and replacing spark plugs, and more.
  5. Limited area: Snow blowers are best suited for larger areas that need to be cleared of snow quickly. If you have a smaller area or driveway, then a shovel may be the better option.
  6. Dangerous: Snow blowers can be dangerous if used incorrectly, so you need to make sure that you read the instructions carefully before using one.
  7. Gas powered models: Gas powered snow blowers are more powerful than electric models but they also require more maintenance and pose a greater risk of injury if used incorrectly. They also produce emissions which can be damaging to the environment.

Differences Between Snow Throwers vs Snow Blowers.

When it comes to battling winter weather, snow throwers and snow blowers are two of the most effective tools.

Both options are designed to quickly remove large amounts of snow in a short amount of time. However, there are some distinct differences between the two that can help you decide which is best for your needs.


Snow throwers are smaller and lighter than snow blowers, making them ideal for smaller properties with limited storage space. They are powered by electric motors or gasoline engines, which can range from 6-13 HP. Snow throwers have single-stage auger systems that scoop up the snow and then discharge it out of the chute at a controlled rate and distance.

Snow blowers are larger and more powerful than snow throwers, making them suitable for larger properties with deeper snow accumulations. They are powered by gas engines that range from 8-25 HP. Snow blowers have two-stage auger systems that first chew up the snow before expelling it at a controlled rate and distance.

Snow Displacement.

Snow throwers are designed to move snow from one location to another, such as from a driveway to a snow bank or garden bed. They typically have a maximum displacement of about 200 pounds per minute.

Snow blowers can also be used for relocating snow, but they are more commonly used for clearing larger areas like driveways and sidewalks. They can move up to 800 pounds of snow per minute, making them ideal for large amounts of heavy snowfall.


Snow throwers are generally much less powerful than snow blowers, making them better suited for lighter accumulations of snow. They also tend to be less expensive and easier to maintain.

Snow blowers are more powerful and can handle deeper accumulations of snow. They are more expensive but offer superior performance in heavy snowfall conditions.


Snow throwers typically have a maximum capacity of about 6-8 inches of snow, while snow blowers can handle up to 12-18 inches. This means that if you live in an area with deep snow accumulations, a snow blower will be the best option for you.


Snow throwers require less maintenance than snow blowers as they have fewer moving parts. They also tend to be easier to work on and repair, making them a great choice for DIYers.

Snow blowers are more complex machines with more moving parts that require regular maintenance and tune-ups. However, these machines offer superior performance and are better suited for larger areas and heavier snow accumulations.


Snow throwers tend to be less expensive than most snow blowers, making them a good option for those on a budget. However, they may not be able to handle deep or wet snow accumulations as well as a snow blower can.

Snow blowers tend to be more expensive than snow throwers, but they are also more powerful and capable of handling larger amounts of snow. This makes them a better option for those who need to clear deep or wet accumulations of snow from large areas.

A Snow Blower Or Snow Thrower: Which Is Better?

When it comes to shoveling snow, there is no better tool than a snow blower or snow thrower. Both are great tools for clearing large areas of snow quickly and easily. But which one is the best for your needs? Here we will compare the two machines and help you decide which is better for you.

Snow blowers are a great option, as they use augers to clear snow quickly and easily. They are powerful enough to handle heavy snowfall, but can also be adjusted to meet the needs of lighter snows. Snow blowers are more expensive than throwers, however they provide greater power and higher capacity for clearing larger areas of snow in less time.

Snow throwers are a great alternative to snow blowers, as they are smaller and less expensive. They use an impeller to push the snow from the ground, making them great for removing light snows. They also require less storage space than a snow blower, which makes them more suitable for people with limited storage space. Snow throwers are also easier to maneuver, as they can be pushed manually or with a handle attached to the machine.

When it comes to deciding which is better for your needs, there are a few key factors you should consider. First, consider how much snow you need to clear and pick accordingly; if you don’t need to clear large amounts of snow, then a snow thrower may be the better choice. Secondly, consider the size of your property and budget; if you have limited space or budget constraints, then a snow thrower may be more suitable for your needs than a snow blower. Finally, think about how often you will need to use the machine; if you plan on using it only occasionally, then a snow thrower is likely the better option.