Are you looking for a brand new Snow Blower this winter? Can't decide which snow blower to purchase? Don't worry, we have made it easy for you with our 2022 Ultimate Guide to Honda Snow Blowers! Luckily for you Gilford Hardware & Outdoor Power Equipment knows a thing or two about Honda snow blowers. We have been selling and servicing them for over 10 years! In this Ultimate guide we will answer all of the most common questions and highlight the beneficial features of the HSS Snow blower series.
The History Of Honda Snow Blowers
Honda has been manufacturing snow blowers since the early 80's. This makes purchasing a Honda snow blower more appealing for a few reasons. Firstly the Honda has been around manufacturing the same product for a long time (30+ years) it must make a decent machine. Secondly this means Honda has had plenty of time to perfect, tweak, add and remove parts, and increase usability and performance. You simply can't produce a perfectly designed snow blower overnight. The current HSS Honda Snow Blower series is an accumulation of years and years of design, engineering and service.
One of The First Honda Two-Stage Snow Blowers
This is where it all began, with the Honda HS80 Two-Stage snow blower. Although it was built over 30 years ago, it looks very similar to the HSS model today. You will notice slight changes which Honda's engineering has used to improve their snow blowers over time.
One example would be the auger controls. The Honda HS80 Snow blower has a manual turn control to change the direction of the chute. It also incorporates a handle on top of the chute to manually change the height of thrown snow. On the current day HSS series models you will not find a manual chute control. Instead you will find an electronically operated joystick which lets you precisely operate the chute from the driving position.
You will also notice the HS80 only came with wheels, track drive wasn't available until later models.
Honda Snow Blowers Legendary Reliability
We haven't had the pleasure of working on a Honda HS80 (yet!) We have serviced older models purchased in the 90's though which were still in working and running condition. There are still examples of running HS80's on the internet today, which means whoever purchased it got their money's worth. 30+ years of snow blowing out of a single unit is amazing considering the quality of many of the outdoor power equipment products built these days.
Honda Snow Blower Warranty and Service
You purchase a snow blower at a big box store, it works well for a year maybe two and something goes wrong. Now what do you do? There might be a manufacturers warranty but it doesn't include service. Can you diagnose a snow blower? Can you fix a snow blower? Do you know what parts to order? Do they still Make the parts? These are all issues we've heard over and over! It usually results in purchasing a Honda Snow blower.
When you Purchase a Honda Snow Blower you get peace of mind. This is because when you purchase a Honda Snow Blower it comes with a 3 year warranty. This warranty is provided through Honda Outdoor Power Equipment servicing dealers. This means that you will have somebody to warranty, fix, and service your Honda snow blower throughout the course of it's useful life. This alone is a great reason to purchase a Honda snow blower compared to any other snow blower on the market.
What is the most likely thing to go wrong on a Honda Snow blower?
Wear & Tear parts are the most common parts to replace on a Honda Snow blower. The Honda Shear pins, scraper bars, and feet are the most likely parts which you or your Honda dealer will replace over the lifetime of your Honda snow blower. We have serviced hundreds of Honda Snow blowers over the years and on very rare occasions we will have to fix something else.
Honda Snow Blower Shear Pins
When you purchase a brand new Honda tracked drive snow blower it will come with a couple sets of shear pins. You will need more, it's a great idea to stock up on shear pins because you can use them up quickly depending on the conditions. *NOTE* Only use Honda OEM Shear pins for your Honda Snow blowers auger! This cannot be stressed enough! Using another brand, non OEM, or simple bolts can and will do damage to your Honda snow blowers auger, and will void the warranty!
Are Honda Snow Blower Worth the Price?
The #1 question we get asked by customers is "Are Honda Snow Blowers really worth the price?" And the answer is YES! If you are looking for a snow blower which will give you the best overall value, power, quality, reliability and resale value Honda two-stage snow blowers are the only choice.
Yes, there are less expensive snow blowers on the market, and for those of you who have tight budgets these are a great choice. I've talked to many people who have bought lesser brand snow blowers say to me "I wish I just waited and bought a Honda instead"
Simple Snow Blower Economics
Sure you can purchase a two stage snow blower for thousands less, but when you compare it to the top tier snow blower you will quickly realize the saying "You get what you pay for" is very true. At first look some of the lesser brands snow blowers might look like they are built like a Honda snow blower but after a deep dive you will realize they aren't. If a competitors snow blower costs $1,500 less than a Honda snow blower... what is it missing?
At first glance at a different snow blower brand you might see a more eye-catching design, LED lights, switches, panels, and styling which look aesthetically pleasing. The problem is looks can be deceiving with Outdoor Power Equipment. If you did a deeper dive you would notice that most of the "features" the competitors boast about aren't exactly useful or quality.
Honda Snow Blower Performance and Reliability
Honda has been manufacturing four stroke engines for over 50 years. It doesn't matter what other brand you might gravitate towards because it simply will not out perform or be more reliable and durable than a Honda engine.
We've had many old Honda snow blowers come in for yearly service. We're talking snow blowers so old we almost didn't recognize them as a Honda Snow blower. Like anything if you keep your equipment properly maintained and serviced the Honda Snow blower will outlast any other snow blower on the market for years and years. We've talked to customers who have bought two different snow blowers previously before deciding to purchase a Honda Snow blower, one thing you won't have is buyers remorse.
What Do The Numbers mean on Honda Snow Blowers?
Each Honda Snowblower model has it's own series designation, this makes it quick and easy to identify each model once you know what they mean.
The First Digit or Digits are the horsepower, for example: 1332 is thirteen Horsepower and 724 is seven horsepower.
The last two digits are the cut width, for example: 1332 has a 32 inch wide cut, and the 724 has a 24 inch cut.
After the numbers you will notice either "AW", "AWD", "AT", or "ATD" This designates the drive and if it's recoil or recoil and electric start.
AW=Wheel drive Recoil Start
AWD=Wheel Drive Electric Start and Recoil Start
AT=Track Drive Recoil Start
ATD=Track Drive Electric and Recoil Start
*NOTE: New 1332 Models are only produced in AT and ATD (Track Drive!)
Why Hydrostatic Drive in a Honda Snow Blower Matters
Hydrostatic drives are a simple yet beneficial addition to Honda Snow blowers. Instead of using belts to drive the snow blower, Honda uses hydraulic fluid. The main benefits of hydrostatic transmission are:
Infinitely variable speed control: Hydrostatic drives allow you to maintain speed more precisley allowing you to choose an exact speed. This allows you to smoothly control the pace and the speed which you are comfortable and able to blow snow. Compared to belt drives which give you a limited speed range.
Power-to-weight ratio: Hydrostatic transmissions are much more lightweight, compact and powerful compared to belt drive transmissions. This gives you more power while reducing weight and fuel consumption of the snow blower.
Virtuallymaintenance free: The hydrostatic transmission from Honda is made for commercial usage and is designed to last for many years. Additionally, the hydrostatic transmission is almost maintenance-free, in contrast to other transmissions utilized by rival units.
Are Wheeled or Tracked Snow Blowers Better?
Another question which you might ask is: Which is better for a snow blower, wheeled or track? Track drive snow blowers are always the best option. They are much more reliable and have far better traction in extreme winter conditions. One example is of the HSS1332ATD tracked drive snow blower being able to climb up stairs to a deck. You wouldn't make it past the first stair tread with a wheeled snow blower. Plus who wants to deal with the extra hassle of getting stuck, having to add studs or chains?
Do I Really Need Electric Start?
Honda manufactures some of the easiest to start four stroke small engines on the planet. Their quality and design is top notch compared to competitors. With this being said you do need electric start. Why? Ease-of-use. New England weather gets extreme and who knows maybe your friends or family will have to use the snow blower. When you have a turn-key electric start motor and an on-board battery (no plugging in required) it makes a simple yet annoying chore much easier.
Is Electric Start just another feature that can go Wrong?
A great argument, if we're talking a different brand of snow blower. Believe it or not we have never had a single issue with a Honda Snow blowers electric starter or onboard battery. You don't have to plug any of the HSS Electric start snow blower models in, since the battery is self charging. We've serviced and sold hundreds of Honda Snow Blowers which are use all over New England, and we have yet to see a single issue with the electric start or on-board batteries.
Once you go Tracked You'll never go Back
We are so confident the benefits of the track drive and electric start far outweigh wheel drive and recoil start that we don't even stock a single wheeled or recoil start Honda snow blower! If and when you purchase a Honda snowblower you should only choose from tracked and electric start models. There is simply no reason for any of the other models, we love Honda Outdoor Power Equipment but when you combine
Which Honda Snow Blower is right for me?
The main differences between the HSS1332, HSS928 and HSS724 are the horsepower and cutting width. You should consider the size, condition, snowfall amounts and level of the area that you will need to remove snow from and the amount of time you want to spend snow blowing. The difference between a HSS1332 and HSS724 is 8 inches and 8 horsepower. This might not seem like much, but when you think about the width and length of the area you will need to remove snow from it can make a huge time and energy difference.
New England driveways can be long! We've sold snow blower to customers with driveways which were hundreds of feet long. It's important to consider the size of your driveway when purchasing a Honda Snow blower because it will save you time and money! The less passes you have to make when snow blowing means the less time it will take you to finish the job!
The Average driveway is 12 feet wide, this means you would need to make (roughly) 6-8 passes using the HSS724, the same driveway would take the HSS1332 4.5-6 passes (roughly) to clear the width of the driveway. This might not seem like much but when you consider the length of your driveway purchasing a snow blower that will finish the job quicker can save you a lot of time and effort!
The great thing about Honda Snowblowers is that they come equipped with Auger Height Control. This means that you are able to articulate the snow blowers auger depending on your snow blowing and driveway conditions. Have a dirt or gravel driveway? Simply lift the auger up! Need to scrape off asphalt or remove packed snow? Just lower the auger giving the snow blower better leverage. The Auger height control is also great for transportation and driveways, ramps, and stairs, allowing you to have more clearance!
Why Horsepower is important when choosing a Snow blower
Higher Snow Blower Horsepower translates to Higher throwing distance and higher total clearing amount per minute. When you compare the HSS724ATD snow blower to the HSS1332ATD snow blower which have an 8 horsepower difference. You will realize that The HSS1332 can clear 2750 pounds per minute and the HSS724ATD can clear 1500 pounds per minute. This is a 1,250 pounds per minute significant difference. Maybe you are looking for something in-between? The HSS928ATD clears 1,900 pounds per minute.
New England snowfalls can range from inches to feet, it's better to have the extra throwing power and not need it, then not have it and need it. I'd always go for bigger is better because you just don't know what you will face.
Can My Spouse or Teenager Use a Honda Snow Blower?
This is one of our most common asked questions! The answer is Yes! This is because all of our Honda Snow Blowers are track and electric start. This means that pretty much anyone can manage to turn on, and start blowing with very little prior instruction needed. You probably won't find a snow blower that's more intuitive in regards to starting procedure and use than a Honda Snow Blower.
What's the Best Snow Blower for a Steep Driveway?
Any of the Honda HSS Track drive snow blowers are the best for steep driveways. This is due to a few reasons, the hydrostatic transmission for power and climbing inclines. The adjustable auger height for being able to raise and lower your auger depending on the pitch. Lastly the track drives give you amazing traction vs. wheeled drive and you don't have to deal with adding extra traction such as chains or spikes.
Are Honda Snow Blowers hard to load into a truck or trailer?
All of the Honda HSS track drive series Snow blowers can easily be loaded into a truck or trailer. This is due to their powerful hydrostatic drive, which allows you to climb up even steep ramps with ease. The adjustable auger height allows you to push the auger up when driving up steep inclines.
Do Honda Snow Blowers hold their Value?
If you are moving, hiring someone else, or upgrading, you might want to eventually sell your Honda Snow Blower. So what about resale value of a Honda snow blower? Honda snow blowers have great resale value due to a couple factors:
Models stay similar year-after-year -If you purchased a Honda HSS1332ATD 5 years ago and you placed it next to a HSS1332ATD from today; you wouldn't notice very much of a difference. This is a great perk because you don't have these drastic upgrades and changes which could lessen the value of your snow blower compared to a newer model.
High Quality Build - Honda Snow Blowers were built to last for years of snow blowing. This is due to their high quality engineering and design. The thick grade housings which are reinforced at stress points. All moving and scraping parts of the snow blower are easily replaceable to prevent long term damage. Combine this with Proper maintenance and yearly services will help maintain your Honda Snow Blower in great condition. Meaning better resale value and less to fix in the long run.
Usefulness - It's a quality built snow blower and will always have a use in running condition. Even if it has had some dings, dents or needs wear and tear parts replaced. The Honda snow blower will always be the go-to choice for removing large amounts of snow off of your property.
High Demand - Honda snow blowers are always in high demand! Even during the Summer months we have customers calling and asking if we have Honda snow blowers in stock. Since the pandemic Honda snow blowers have been very hard to find, due to low numbers being manufactured. Hopefully this will eventually change but we don't foresee it for Winter of 2022. We sold completely out of Honda Snow Blowers last year in just two weeks. Customers drive from as far as Pennsylvania to purchase them in-store.
Does Honda Make a Hybrid / Electric Snow Blower?
Yes, Honda makes the HSM1336i Snow Blower, which is an absolute beast of a snow blower, which weighs 540 lbs! The Honda iGX390 engine powers the auger and impeller. The track drive is powered seperately by electronic dual motors. The Honda HSM1336i is a great choice for professionals since it's able to move a whopping 3,000 lbs. of snow per min. If you are lookng for more information check it out here
We do not stock the HSM1336i Hybrid Snow Blower because it costs almost twice the amount of the largest two stage model (HSS1332ATD) and we haven't seen much demand for it, but if you are looking for one, please contact us and we will try our absolute best to get you one!
When is the Best Time to Purchase a Honda Snow Blower?
Due to supply chain issues, backorders and much more the best time to purchase a Honda snow blower is whenever you can possibly find one that is in stock!
2022 Honda Two-Stage Snow Blower Inventory
We're currently awaiting our 2022 Honda Snow Blower delivery! We hope to have a better idea on the quantity of available models *COMING SOON*!
Unlike the so called "competitors" of the Honda HSS Series snow blowers, you will not feel buyers remorse after you purchase. Hopefully this article has persuaded you to purchase a Honda Snow Blower for this winter! Honda snow blowers will be in stock very soon! If you have any questions please Contact us, if you found this article and don't live in New England please shop local and support your local Honda outdoor power equipment dealer!
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