Snow blowers are extremely handy machines for removing snow from paved surfaces and even uneven terrains. There are three main types of snow blowers, the most powerful types being two- and three-stage models. These models use gasoline to run, making them extremely portable while offering as much power as you’d need for heavy-duty snow-removal jobs.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at a couple high-rated two-stage gas snow blowers – the ST224P from Husqvarna and the YB5765 from YARDMAX. They both feature 208 cc engines, serrated steel augers for crushing ice and snow, as well as reverse gears for when the feed intake or augers get jammed in a snowbank.
Despite having several of the same features, there are significant differences in performance that we’ll go over. Without further ado, let’s get straight into the comparison portion of this article.
The intake measurement indicates how much snow the unit can handle at any given time. To reduce the amount of time spent in the cold, a larger intake is your friend. The Husqvarna features a tremendous 24-inch wide mouth that can swallow snow up to 16 inches tall.
The YARDMAX’s intake capacity isn’t much different from Husqvarna’s. It can clear paths of up to 22 inches wide and 16 inches deep. For small driveways and pathways, a 2-inch disparity in width is immaterial.
Conclusion: The width of the intake only matters if you have a large area to work on. Be sure to consider the width of your driveway and sidewalk before purchasing a snow blower. Generally speaking, wider is better, and the Husqvarna is 2 inches wider than the YARDMAX.
Weight and Maneuverability
Even though these models come with heavy-duty tires, the weight of the unit can affect maneuverability. The Husqvarna weighs almost 200 pounds which is surprising for a home-use device. However, the saving grace is the forward-propelling wheels and power steering which allows the unit to glide and turn with no problems.
The YARDMAX is a light 125-pound unit. This isn’t too bad, especially considering that this unit doesn’t feature power steering, so the lightweight design really helps you make sharp turns without having to reverse. This machine has five forward-propelling gears.
Conclusion: With a heavy-duty unit, you really need additional help to get past corners without wasting time constantly reversing and moving forward. This is what we especially appreciate about the Husqvarna ST224P. The YARDMAX is also easy to maneuver thanks to its lightweight design, but we think the power steering capability of the former model is what makes it considerably easier to maneuver.
LED headlights come in handy when you only have time to operate a snow blower in the dark. The Husqvarna features a piercing LED headlight that illuminates the controls and path in front of the intake and auger, meaning that you won’t need an external source of light to run this machine.
The 22-inch version of the YB5765 doesn’t come with an LED headlight so you’ll either need to provide your own external light source or wait until the sun comes up. Operating this unit in the dark isn’t advised since the controls (chute adjustment and gear changing) won’t be visible.
Conclusion: The Husqvarna wins by default. Without a headlight, the YARDMAX can’t compete. However, what makes the Husqvarna’s headlight special is its positioning which delivers the perfect amount of light to tinker around with the controls as well as illuminate the path in front of the unit.
If you’ve ever worked outdoors during winter, you’ll know how quickly your hands and fingers can lose feeling. One solution to this problem is wearing gloves or mittens to keep your fingers toasty, but it might affect the way you handle a snow blower. Luckily, the Husqvarna comes with heated handles to keep your hands warm while removing snow. In addition, the large-sized dials and buttons are easy to control even with gloves.
The 22-inch YB5765 doesn’t come with heated handles. This isn’t an issue since, just like the Husqvarna, starting up the unit and switching between gears is totally manageable with gloves or mittens.
Whether your snow blower comes with heated handles or not, when operating out in the cold, there’s no reason not to put on a pair of warm gloves. The Husqvarna’s heated handles can help you maintain feeling in your digits and palm, whereas the YARDMAX’s handlebars won’t.
Husqvarna ST224P and YARDMAX YB5765
We mentioned earlier that the LED headlights make the Husqvarna useable during the nighttime, but it may not be the best time to run the machine. Unfortunately for both of these models, they produce around 88.4 decibels of noise when running.
As a comparison, running any of these models will sound similar to a running a blender to anybody in your immediate vicinity. Snow blowers, especially gas-powered models, are notorious for being loud, but both of these models are excessively loud. The tradeoff, of course, is clean results with fewer repeated passes over both smooth and uneven terrain.
Husqvarna ST224P vs YARDMAX YB5765: Bottom Line
Between the Husqvarna ST224P and the YARDMAX YB5765, we personally feel that you would get better value out of the former. The justification is simple – it can clear paths of up to 24 inches wide and 16 inches deep with a single pass, its power steering capability helps you round corners with no trouble at all, the LED headlights work extremely well for nighttime operation, and the handlebars can keep your palms and fingers toasty while working in the harsh cold.
This isn’t to say that the YARDMAX is a horrible gas-powered snow blower, but it’s missing a lot of features that we typically look for in heavy-duty – not to mention rather costly – two-stage gas-powered snow blowers. However, once again, we must stress that your purchase decision should be based on how wide and large an area you plan on running your snow blower on.