Which commercial leaf blower is best?
Whether you need to remove large quantities of leaves, clear out some snow or clean a dirty walkway, a commercial leaf blower can get the job done. From handheld to backpack options, the best machines are durable, powerful and provide a convenient way to maintain the landscape with minimal fuss. The best commercial leaf blower is the powerful and lightweight Milwaukee M18 FUEL Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless Handheld Blower Kit With M18 FUEL Hedge Trimmer.
What to know before you buy a commercial leaf blower
There are three main types of commercial leaf blowers:
- Handheld leaf blowers are one of the most common options. These machines are lightweight and can easily clear a yard of debris and wet leaves. Some even suck up leaves for easy disposal later. These powerful leaf blowers are quiet, between 70-100 decibels. Handheld leaf blowers use a battery, fuel tank or cord to function.
- Backpack leave blowers weigh around 20 pounds and are heavier than handheld ones, but they’re often more powerful. Since you wear them like a backpack, the weight gets distributed evenly across your shoulders and back. These machines are either gas or electric powered.
- Wheeled leaf blowers are usually the most powerful and largest machines. They can weigh upward of 100 pounds and are often very noisy. They’re best for large landscaping projects or yards.
Motor strength and speed control
You can scale commercial leaf blowers with the following measurements.
- Cubic feet per minute: This indicates how much air goes through the nozzle every minute. Machines with a higher value can clear larger areas more effectively than those with a lower value. Most units have a CFM from 200-800.
- Miles per hour: This refers to how quickly the machine clears away leaves, sand, dirt and other debris. Most commercial leaf blowers are between 100 and 250 miles per hour.
- Speed control: Some leaf blowers have adjustable speed control. This means the machine can reach and maintain a certain speed without you needing to hold the trigger. It’s useful if you want to clear away certain foliage but not others, such as mulch.
Both the cfm and mph indicate the motor’s power. If you have a machine with a high cfm but low mph, you can easily clear a nearby area. And if you have one with a higher mph and low cfm, you can clear smaller areas from a greater distance.
Fuel-based leaf blowers usually run around 100 decibels, while electric and battery ones are around 75 decibels. Your local municipality might have its own regulations and limitations on the number of decibels you can use, so check it before you make a purchase.
What to look for in a quality commercial leaf blower
A leaf blower’s runtime depends on the model, type and power source.
- Battery-operated machines have an average runtime of 20-70 minutes. Standard batteries range from 18-120 volts. Typically, a larger battery means a longer runtime.
- Gasoline-powered units can hold up to 40 ounces of fuel and run between 1-3 hours.
- Corded leaf blowers, unlike cordless ones, can constantly run because they don’t have to rely on a battery.
Leaf blowers have nozzles of different lengths. However, there are two main types of nozzle:
- Flat nozzles often have higher airspeeds, so they’re best for clearing away heavy items. They’re also good for removing wet or heavy leaves.
- Round nozzles usually use more air, making them ideal for dealing with lots of loose debris and leaves. They’re also useful for general yard maintenance.
Some leaf blowers come with both nozzle types, so you can swap them out as needed.
Corded vs. cordless
Corded leaf blowers are usually lighter, less expensive and can run indefinitely as long as they’re plugged in. However, they have a more limited range and often require an extension cord for larger areas. The cord can also get caught on things or, when exposed to moisture, become damaged. Cordless units are much less limited when it comes to range, but they’re also heavier and more expensive. They also have a shorter runtime. That said, they’re a good option for larger projects.
Some units come with accessories such as extension cords, cord locks, additional nozzles and hedge trimmers.
How much you can expect to spend on a commercial leaf blower
Leaf blowers cost between $50-$400. Some higher-end units can cost $600 or more, especially if they come with an extended warranty or accessories. In general, cordless commercial leaf blowers usually cost more than corded ones.
Commercial leaf blower FAQ
How do I maintain a commercial leaf blower?
A. With proper maintenance, your unit should last around 10 years. Always clean it out immediately after use to ensure it lasts as long as possible. Use a slightly damp rag to wipe around the air filter and fan blades. Try not to leave any debris behind. Also, check the nozzle regularly for any signs of wear and tear, and store it in a dry, well-ventilated area.
Are there any dangers or health risks to using a leaf blower?
A. These machines can pollute the air or produce dust and other air particulates, which could lead to difficulty breathing. To prevent this, wear a safety mask and goggles.
What’s the best commercial leaf blower to buy?
Top commercial leaf blower
What you need to know: This cordless handheld machine comes with a hedge trimmer, variable speed trigger, high and low-speed settings, battery, charger and round nozzle.
What you’ll love: It can reach up to 450 cfm and 120 mph. It’s also versatile and compatible with more than 200 Milwaukee tools. The machine comes with a limited warranty for general wear and tear.
What you should consider: It’s heavy, so it can be difficult to use for long periods.
Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot
Top commercial leaf blower for the money
What you need to know: This lightweight electric leaf blower is a great entry-level option as it can cover a large distance effectively and efficiently.
What you’ll love: Just over 6 pounds, this corded machine is relatively quiet and works great on smaller projects. It has a max airspeed of about 260 mph and a 725 cfm, making it powerful enough to clear away most debris.
What you should consider: The control knob is a little difficult to use.
Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This heavy-duty backpack leaf blower is powerful enough to handle anything, from clearing away wet leaves to removing dirt and light snow.
What you’ll love: Weighing in at just under 20 pounds, this machine has a top speed of 230 mph and 920 cfm. It’s German-made and quite powerful. It comes with a two-stroke engine that uses gasoline and oil to function.
What you should consider: It requires some understanding of how leaf blowers work to use.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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