A Buying Guide To Find The Best Leaf Blower For Your Needs

Best Leaf Blower For Your Needs

Taking care of our lawns and gardens can be made simpler with the choice of a few basic power tools and accessories, with the leaf blower being one of the most important.

Although often overlooked for other devices, the leaf blower is one of the most efficient and simple ways to get your home and garden looking clean and clear without having to exert any energy for yourself.

Man using leaf blower behind red house.

These gardening tools are simple but effective, with forced air being blown out of a nozzle and directing at any debris you want to clear up. Usually extremely powerful, a leaf blower can blow leaves, twigs, grass clippings, and more into a pile for easier cleanup or moved off your property altogether.

In addition to leaves, they can clear snow, be used to clean machinery, clean parking lots, dislodge matted grass, so they’re more than just a blower.

Although there are many great varieties of leaf blower around, looking through the market of gardening power tools can be confusing and tough to navigate. With this handy buyer’s guide, though, we show you how to narrow them down to the best one for your gardening needs with a range of options that cover all budgets and features.

With the right leaf blower in your gardening kit, you can get hours of work done in just minutes, and it’s extremely versatile in what it can achieve. The best leaf blower should be easy to use, energy efficient, and powerful, so regardless of the type of blower you decide on to clean your garden, these are must have features to consider.

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Types Of Leaf Blower

When the very first leaf blower was invented in the United States during the 1950s, it actually began as a chemical sprayer with the chemicals removed.

This large and bulky model might have been a hassle to carry around, but the results it gave homeowners made it extremely worthwhile to use. Since then, the leaf blower has evolved into a simpler but more effective gardening tool, and with a few different varieties to consider.

Handheld Leaf Blower

These are the most basic design of leaf blower, with the large nozzle and a handle for the operator to use. Many people prefer these as they’re lightweight and easier to maneuver and often come in cordless and gas powered varieties, however after prolonged use they might cause fatigue.

Backpack Leaf Blower

Another popular option for leaf blower thanks to its ergonomic design is the backpack leaf blower. These feature a nozzle and the motor and system attached to backpack straps to wear on the user. An advantage of these is that you can use them for longer amounts of time without causing a strain, but they can be trickier to maneuver if there is a cord attached.

Backpack leaf blower.

Walk Behind Leaf Blower

This is the larger style of leaf blower and usually reserved for commercial use, however, they are still popular for the home gardener who might have more area to work with. The system is attached to wheels and able to be pushed or pulled by the operator, with the advantage being far more power than possible with the handheld variety.

Gas Powered Leaf Blower

This is the most traditional form of leaf blower, and it relies on gas and oil to operate the motor. Although even the best gas-powered leaf blower can get quite a bit of power behind it, it can also be noisy to use and emit potentially harmful emissions that are bad for both the operator and the environment.

Electric Leaf Blower

These require an electrical power source to supply, so the user is constantly attached to a power cord. Although you can use an extension cord to reach further, some people might find the freedom limited. For those looking for a greener approach to gardening, though, this is a top choice.

Battery Leaf Blower

A battery operated leaf blower usually runs of lithium-ion batteries that can be recharged as required, however, they aren’t as powerful as the other models in most cases. The huge bonus with a battery blower is the low noise and gas emissions, as well as the freedom to move about without a cord.

How To Use A Leaf Blower Effectively

No matter which of these types of leaf blower you use, they all require special care and attention to ensure that you’re using them safely and effectively. Just as you do with all types of power tools, you should always be covered with safety gear such as goggles and hearing protection to prevent from flying debris or loud motors interfering with your health.

The key to using a leaf blower safely is to always check the intended area before you blow, as there should be no people or pets present where you’re going to work.

Although you might think some air blowing is harmless enough, these tools can be extremely dangerous when pointed at others.

Have a plan in place for where you intend to work and always pay close attention to your surroundings.

Using power tools can make life a lot easier, but only when you know how best to operate them.

Man using leaf blower.

Always spend time reading the user manual before you give it a go, and spend time practicing with its force and power before you get started.

As each of these blowers can be quite unique in what they offer, you need to understand how your individual model operates to ensure the more efficient and safe operation.

The Top Features In A Leaf Blower

When you’re shopping around for a leaf blower, you probably realize quite quickly just how different each model can be. As everyone’s gardening needs are different, though, there are personal considerations you should take to decide what’s best for you.

  • Blowing area – depending on your size of the yard, you’ll need to find one that can meet the square feet requirements of the area you need to blow. Generally the wider the area, the less pressure you’ll get, so it will depend on your garden specifically.
  • Power source – whether you choose gas, electricity, or battery operated, each of these has their own unique advantages and disadvantages.
  • Noise level – if you have neighbors in close proximity you’ll want something with a lower decibel output, and will need to consider noise protection safety gear if using a gas powered blower.
  • Weight – depending on your own strength and comfort, you might prefer to opt for something more lightweight. Usually, the lighter the weight the less power you’ll have so you need to weigh up what’s most important.
  • Nozzle design – flat and round are the two most common nozzle designs, with many models offering accessories that have both options.
  • Speed control – this will allow you to blow with full force or something lighter, depending on the leaves and debris you’re working with and where you need to direct them.
  • Air intake – with the option for air intake you can also vacuum the leaves and debris up so that you can use them for mulch or store them in a bag.
  • Adjustable air deflector – this allows you to position the air coming from the device to an area better suited so that it’s not blowing in your face or at other debris and creating a mess.

Our Choices For Best Leaf Blower

After weighing up the most important features to help you achieve your landscaping goals, and considering what type of leaf blower might be best for you, you’re better equipped to make the right decision. Here are our top picks for the best-rated leaf blower in each category, representing a range of budgets and features to give you a diverse selection.

Husqvarna Gas Powered Backpack Blower

When you look around your garden shed, chances are you already have a powerful tool on hand with the trusted name of Husqvarna on it, as this company has been providing American homes with all of their must-have accessories for many years.

Their 560BTS Gas Powered Backpack Blower is a prime example of their quality and durability, as one of the best choices around for a leaf blower.

Husqvarna 560BTS 65.6cc 2-Stroke X-Torq Gas Powered 232 MPH Backpack Blower

Source: husqvarna.com

Our Rating

The best thing about this leaf blower is the 65.6cc x-torq engine that increases fuel efficiency and reduces harmful emissions without sacrificing anything on power. With 500bts behind it, this is the ideal leaf blower for both commercial and domestic settings and it can handle any job that you give it.

Although it has the backpack design which makes it comfortable to use, some reviewers have mentioned that a waist strap might be a nice addition to this blower. A waist strap may add some stability to this commercial grade machine, but many people were happy to use just the backpack feature so it will depend on the user’s comfort concerns.

Whether you want a blower to operate at its maximum or a lighter touch for those few leaves laying around, the Husqvarna really can do it all. This device is comfortable without losing anything on power and is ideal for those who want a serious leaf blower that can get the job done right the first time.


Echo Handheld Blower

When you’re after a handheld blower for a quick and easy operation, you won’t be disappointed with the Echo Handheld Blower. As one of the most well-known models on the market, this leaf blower has made thousands of customers happy with its no fuss approach to blowing leaf, debris, grass, and anything else away.

This model is especially ideal for those looking for a low noise model, with just 65 decibels being emitted when you use it. As an added bonus, it’s extremely lightweight, so if you’re looking for a discreet blower that won’t disrupt the neighbors or your back, this is the choice for you.

Echo Handheld Blower with Power Boost Vortex PB-250LN

Source: echo-usa.com

Our Rating

The Echo Handheld Blower comes with 254cc boost vortex engine, however, some reviews have stated they thought it would be more powerful. However, for those looking for comfort and ergonomics to help the maneuver the blower, you’ll be pleased with this model as it offers a rotating control feature.

Although this model could do with a little more power if you’re using it in a commercial setting, it’s perfect for domestic use, so the home gardener would be absolutely thrilled with everything it’s able to achieve for a handheld blower. If you’re looking for something easy to use, this is the best lightweight leaf blower by far.


Toro 3-in-1 Blower

If you’re looking for more than just a leaf blower from your next garden accessory, you can look no further than the Toro 3-in-1 Blower. This amazing device is not only a powerful leaf blower but also a vacuum and leaf shredder too, meaning you get more bang for your buck when you invest in this machine from Toro.

The air speeds capable with the Toro 3-in-1 Blower are 235mph and the air volume up to 390cfm, making this one of the more powerful choices for best leaf blower around. With a variable speed 12 amp motor all powered by electricity, you’ll quickly realize that there’s no need to use harmful gas-powered leaf blowers just to get results.

Toro 51609 Ultra 12 amp Variable-Speed (up to 235) Electric Blower/Vacuum with Metal Impeller

Source: toro.com

Our Rating

Best of all, it’s quieter and cleaner than traditional models as well so there’s little disruption for the weekend gardener.

For those wanting to utilize the other features that the Toro 3-in-1 has, you can simply flip a switch and a quick release latch will turn this from a leaf blower into a vacuum. Once you’ve picked the leaves up it can convert again to a shredder so you can make light work of the debris you’ve collected and create your own mulch.

The best thing about the 3-in-1 Leaf Blower from Toro would have to be the added bonus of the shredder, and while some reviews have stated that they were able to shred everything from nuts and rocks within, it’s generally recommended that you only use it for leaves and grass otherwise you might do some damage.

If you’re after the best electric leaf blower, this is right up with there the very top.


Poulan Pro Backpack Blower

When you’re looking for a powerful leaf blower but don’t have the strength or energy to hold it while you work, the Poulan Pro Backpack Blower is a comfortable solution. This leaf blower is best suited to domestic use around the house and is ideal for people who like the ease and maneuverability that a backpack blower can offer.

With a 48cc two stroke mower, there isn’t much that this backpack blower can’t handle. As an added bonus, all of the reviews state that it’s one of the easiest power tools for the garden to start so would especially suit those who have struggled in the part with gas-powered devices.

Poulan Pro 967087101 Leaf Blower

Source: poulanpro.com

Our Rating

If you’re looking for something to suit the jobs around the home and garden, you won’t be disappointed.

The only thing to note with this backpack blower is it’s a little heavier than others on the market, so after some use, you might find yourself more fatigued than usual. However, with the addition of the backpack straps, it makes it a lot easier to carry and distribute the weight so you’ll barely be bothered at all.

If you’re looking for the best leaf blower for the money, the Pulan Pro Backpack Blower is certainly one of the more affordable options. This model would suit the weekend gardener or those who need it for odd jobs around the home, and with such an affordable price tag it’s an investment that you can’t pass up.


Ryobi Jet Fan Cordless Blower

For those gardeners looking for the best cordless leaf blower to help them get their homes into shape, there isn’t much better than the Ryobi Jet Fan Cordless Blower.

This amazingly lightweight model works on a lithium ion battery to provide you with constant power as you work without the need for any annoying cords or harmful gas emissions, making it one of the most earth-friendly options available.

The Ryobi Jet Fan operates with a jet fan design that maximizes its power, and with speeds of 155mph and 300 cfm, it’s surprisingly powerful for something that runs on a battery.

Ryobi RY40402A 155 mph 300 CFM 40-Volt Lithium-ion Cordless Jet Fan Blower

Source: ryobitools.com

Our Rating

However, you’re able to get about 20 minutes of full use and power from this blower so if you’re looking for more than that to get through your garden you should invest in a spare battery.

As one of the best battery leaf blower models, it’s no surprise that this is quite versatile in what it can tackle. You’re able to blow both wet and dry leaves with the Ryobi Jet Fan Blower, so you can use it in all types of weather and conditions.

Since it has the battery pack attached you’re given even greater freedom too, making this a great choice for those who like some freedom with their gardening.

Just as you’d expect with a battery operated leaf blower, it won’t be as tough as a gas-powered model, but it’s more than enough for those looking for a domestic model. As an added bonus, it’s so lightweight and noise free that you can even get an early start on your gardening, so it’s great for those with neighbors in close proximity.

Overall, the Ryobi Jet Fan is a top choice for the best lithium-ion cordless leaf blower, provided you have the backup power for it.


The Need For A Good Leaf Blower

Whether you enjoy taking care of your gardens as a form of relaxation, or you just do it to give your home a cleaner and more appealing look, there’s no denying how much easier it is with the help of some power tools.

The leaf blower especially is one of the most effective ways you can clear debris, grass clippings, and leaves from your pathways and lawn in an instant for an automatic transformation of your garden.

With everything in mind about what makes a good leaf blower, and which models can help you achieve a fast, effective, and hassle-free cleanup of your yard, we’ve narrowed down our top choices for leaf blower in terms of their category.

However, as everyone gardener is just as unique as their gardens, there’s never a one size fits all approach to take with these power tools.

Final Verdict

For the gardener looking for the comfort and accessibility of a backpack leaf blower, our first choice would have to be the Husqvarna Backpack Blower.

The reason that this one beat out the Poulan Pro was that it had just a bit of extra power behind it that could make garden maintenance easier overall. If you’re looking for the best commercial leaf blower too, this should be your first preference.

In terms of the best handheld leaf blower, the best pick would be the Echo Handheld Blower. Although the Ryobi Jet Fan Blower still offered quite a lot in terms of versatility and freedom, ultimately the Echo won as it was just that bit more powerful but with even less noise and pollution than the Ryobi.

Man using leaf blower.

For the home gardener, these are two factors that just can’t be passed over.

Finally, for those wanting the power of a leaf blower and vacuum in one, it has to be the Toro 3-in-1 Blower. This vacuums, blows, and shreds, to give you a one-stop shop for most of your gardening jobs and all packed up in a simple and convenient package.

No matter which of these leaf blowers you choose to add to your gardening arsenal, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without one before. Not only are they adept at making light work of leaves lying around, but they can clear your pathways, driveways, and garden of all other debris to ensure a clean and polished look that takes just minutes of your time.

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