If you are serious about doing yard work and you need serious machinery to get your jobs done well, then you’ll want the most effective and powerful tools available.
Backpack leaf blowers fit into that category.
Most leaf blowers are hand-held machines which can cause strain on your body if you are working on larger jobs or for extended periods.
In contrast, backpack leaf blowers are designed specifically to help you get your work done quickly and without the pain of too much physical effort.
If you plan to use a leaf blower regularly for jobs that will take you more than 30 minutes or so at a time, you should definitely consider buying a backpack model.
Size and power of backpack leaf blowers
Backpack leaf blowers feature gasoline engines as their power sources.
These engines are rated for power in terms of cubic centimeters, or cc (see more on this on the gas leaf blower page).
The smallest backpack leaf blowers feature engines sized at about 24cc, while the largest and most powerful models have engines with more than 80cc displacement.
While there is some overlap in terms of power, backpack blowers typically have substantially larger engines than their hand-held gas powered counterparts.
Like other leaf blowers, these machines are also rated by their air speed capacity. You can expect to find backpack blowers with capacities ranging from 140 mph right up to 240mph in the pro-class models.
How do backpack leaf blowers compare to gas powered and electric leaf blowers?
These are the main points of comparison between backpack leaf blowers and the other kinds of blowers:
- The obvious major difference between these and other gas powered machines is that the backpack blower is designed to be worn on the user’s back, with the blower nozzle being held and manipulated by the user’s hands.
- The engines on backpack blowers are larger and more powerful than those on hand held gas machines. This means that backpack blowers can be used for larger jobs and tougher-to-clear areas.
- Because of their larger engines, backpack blowers are heavier and more bulky than other leaf blowing machines. In fact, backpack blowers can weigh almost twice as much as hand held models. However, this issue is mitigated by the fact that the backpack blower has its weight distributed across your whole upper body while in operation. This means that it actually causes less strain than a hand-held machine, even though it is heavier.
- Since they use similar engine technology, backpack blowers are just as loud as other gas powered machines, which means that they may be inappropriate for some consumers.
- Electric blowers, whether corded or cordless, are quite different to backpack leaf blowers. Electric models are not designed for larger jobs, whereas backpack blowers are ideal for tougher, more time-consuming chores. They are much noisier than electric models, though, and worse for the environment since they produce high levels of emissions.
- Backpack models are significantly heavier than other leaf blowers. They are also more expensive.
- Although they are incredibly effective for most applications, they are inappropriate for light jobs that would be better accomplished with the use of a smaller, less powerful machine.
Components of a backpack leaf blower
Have a look at this Husqvarna video for a run through of the typical components of a backpack leaf blower:
Features to look out for in backpack leaf blowers
If you think that a back pack leaf blower is the best choice for your needs, you should shop for your ideal unit with certain features in mind.
Not all back pack leaf blowers are created equal, and you ought to have a good idea of what you need before you make a purchase. Think about the following features.
- These kinds of leaf blowers are designed to be comfortable when they are strapped to you and in operation but, as with an ordinary backpack, some models are much more comfortable to operate than others. Look out for those with a true ergonomic design which spreads the weight of the load and does not place strain on your neck, shoulders or back.
- Handle and throttle controls – These should be able to be used comfortably and without strain after lengthy periods of operation. Look out for those that can be adjusted to suit the operator, like the ones on this Husqvarna model below
- Next, it is important to consider the type of blower nozzle mechanism. Wider flatter nozzles tend to be more effective for leaves. Units that feature multiple nozzle types or adjustable mechanisms give you greater flexibility.
- You will also want to make sure that the machine you buy is CARB compliant if you are concerned about the environment. Being CARB compliant means that the machine has passed testing administered by the California Air Resources Board. Needless to say, if you live in California, owning a CARB compliant machine is a necessity.
- Finally, the back pack leaf blower you purchase should be made by a respected and well-known manufacturer. Try to avoid deals that look too good to be true because they probably are.
The best uses for back pack leaf blowers
These machines are best suited for jobs requiring long-term operation over large areas.
They are powerful enough to handle most types of debris, and they are more comfortable to operate than most hand-held machines. This makes them ideal for clearing large homes or areas surrounding semi industrial buildings.
If you are in the market for a leaf blower, there are many choices available to you. Back pack leaf blowers are the best in terms of power and comfort, though the gasoline engines they feature can be loud and unwieldy.
If you are interested in buying one of these units, be sure that a back pack blower is what you need for your property. By thoroughly evaluating your needs, you can choose the ideal blower for the jobs you have planned.
Did you find this article useful? If so, it would really help me if you could share it using any of the buttons below. How about giving it a Google +1? Or maybe a Facebook like or a Tweet?