A beautifully landscaped yard gives a home or property curb appeal and beauty. But keeping a yard looking its best all the time can be difficult, especially in areas where there are a lot of trees. It is here that you need to remove leaves and debris, and a rake is not always the best solution. That’s when you want to think about getting the best leaf vacuum or top leaf blower to help you clear the area of debris.
While most people believe a leaf blower is something you only need during the fall, the best leaf blowers are tools that can come in handy throughout the year. They are useful in the spring when you need to blow out debris and leaves leftover from the winter. In the summer leaf blowers help get rid of grass clippings and clean hardscape areas such as walkways, decks, and patios from dirt and debris.
Truth is, using a rake to clear up leaves and grass clippings is time-consuming and exhausting. It is an outdated yard tool. So why do it? You can use a leaf blower to do it in a fraction of the time. But choosing the right model can be a bit of a challenge. There are just so many types of blowers to choose from. Some leaf blowers have more power than others, some are electric and others are gas-powered, while others are battery operated. Some models can even vacuum and mulch. Cordless and gas-powered leaf blowers tend to be pricey but work much better on large yards. On the other hand, corded electric leaf blowers are great, especially, if you are worried about weight, environment, and noise, or when you only have a small area to clear.
If we had to choose the best leaf blower for home use, it would be the Toro 51621 UltraPlus Leaf Blower. This model offers a great deal of versatility and durability. It has three in one actions which means you don’t have to switch between tools at the drop of a hat. It is relatively low-weight and offers great blowing action. However, it is a model made for mid-sized jobs and not a great choice if you live on a very large property where there are a lot of trees.
Top 8 Best Leaf Blowers
Toro 51619 Ultra Blower/Vac, Red
The Toro 51619 is a very nice corded mid-sized electric leaf blower. It offers three functions in one product. It blows, vacuums and mulches. This blower has a lot of power with 250 mph and can get that outdoor area swept of leaves and debris. The product comes with outstanding features like a catch bag for leaves and mulch, and different sized nozzles that help get any leaf blowing job done, no matter how tough. It is a unit that can clean areas of leaves either wet or dry. Another feature that stands out here is the metal impeller. Most other comparable models have hard plastic impellers ( this is the part that gives the blower its force to shred leaves and other small particles). The metal impeller makes the blower more durable and prevents it from getting nicked, scratched, or damaged by flying debris and rock.
Great sweeping ability
Ability to vacuum
Mulches twigs and leaves
We can’t really say this is a con because it is also a Pro.
Heavier than Some Other Models (more durability)
Toro 51621 UltraPlus Leaf Blower Vacuum
The Toro UltraPlus also stands up to the toughest of leaf-blowing jobs. It has made our favored list because it also does three jobs in one. It can blow, vacuum and mulch. When put to the test the UltraPlus can handle some of the heaviest jobs. Wet tree leaves, fallen fruit, leaves stuck on sand and gravel. It can clear these heavy, matted leaves and outdoor gunk quickly. The motor comes with easy-to-change variable speeds and has a nice output of 250 mph. This Toro model also has a metal impeller which protects it from wear and tear. The only downside is that it is a little hefty at 8.9 lbs. Even so, the weight is evenly balanced so it is not too heavy to carry around. The handles on the back and front allow for the grabbing of the motor with both hands.
Variable Speeds give the blower different air-blow strengths
The wonderful sweeping ability of all types of leaf blowing situations
Different nozzles offer more versatility
Easy to assemble and disassemble
The metal impeller increases durability
Slightly heavier than normal
WORX WG520 12 Amp TURBINE 600 Electric Leaf Blower
The Worx Turbine is a corded electric favorite because it can blow, vacuum, and mulch to get rid of the heaviest types of leaf blowing jobs. The design offers dynamic airflow that forces air in a streamline to deliver enough air to complete the toughest leaf-blowing jobs. With a CFM of 600, the blowing power is extremely efficient. It comes with variable speed control which on its low setting can blow, vacuum or mulch the smaller leaf problems, and the high setting with increased airflow can handle that matted leafy muck that comes after a hard rain. At just 6.4 pounds, this blower is easy to handle and hold with just one hand.
Variable speed for different blowing requirements
Slim design provides better airflow
No vacuuming capability
Just one nozzle to do the job
Hitachi RB24EAP Gas Powered Leaf Blower
If you are looking for a compact gas-powered leaf blower, then the Hitachi RB24EAP may do the trick. The design here is well balanced which makes it 8.6 pounds easier to handle. Amazingly, this Hitachi machine can blow leaves and debris about 18 feet, but it only has about air velocity of 170 MPH and a CFM of 441, which is on the small side but can work well for small yards. Another nice feature we see here is the auto-return switch which resets the On button so the machine can start easily the next time you start it up. The Hitachi RB24EAP also offers a low-emission engine and a fuel tank of 17.5 ounces, which like other models needs a 50:1 ratio mixture of oil and gasoline.
Lightweight (for a gas model)
Low emission engine
Horsepower is slightly lower
Husqvarna 965877502 350BT 1.6 kW 50.2 cc 7500 rpm 180 MPH Backpack Leaf Blower
The Husqvarna 965877502 is an exceptional tool used by landscape artists and large property owners. This is a gas-powered leaf blower and has a high X-Torq motor which gives it expanded blowing force and a 494.41 cfm with 180 mph. The controls are versatile and give the user better throttle and fan control and easier handling. This blower is in the backpack harness style which professional landscapers and large property owners prefer as it allows for easier carrying. The torq engine is low emission and offers increased fuel efficiency. The load-reducing backpack harness makes the blower lightweight for easier use and the fan speed can be controlled.
The 2.1 X-Torq engine offers reduced emissions
Controllable fan speeds
Can Be too large for small homeowners
BLACK+DECKER LSW36 40V Lithium Ion Cordless Sweeper
The Black and Decker LSW36 is a small and lightweight leaf blower, ideal for use in smaller outdoor areas. What makes this blower such an outstanding buy is that it runs on a 40V lithium rechargeable battery and long-time run power at different controlled levels. Higher blow levels help remove larger amounts of debris, wet or dry from hard surfaces such as walkways and patios. The built-in scraper also helps remove stuck-on debris. This Black and Decker unit is light at just 4.7 pounds and has a soft-grip handle for one hand-holding.
Quiet when running
Powerful lithium battery
Controls to adjust speed and maximize run-time
No other connections
Battery needs charging
Greenworks 24012 7 Amp Single Speed Electric 160 MPH Blower
The Greenworks 24012 is a small leaf blower and works well in small areas. Although small it still has the power of 160 MPH. Its most outstanding feature is its lightweight, making it ideal for people who need a blower but can’t handle a gas-powered blower. It comes with a 7 Amp electric motor and has a simple design that is ergonomic and lightweight. The power is not bad for such a small blower and runs at a max of 160 mph.
Easy to handle
Power cord safety feature (prevents it from coming unplugged.
Small for large yard work
7 amp motor could be larger
BLACK+DECKER BV5600 High Performance Blower/Vac/Mulcher
A nice electric leaf blower with a 12 amp motor. The Black and Decker BV5600 model offers very nice 3 in 1 blower performance with a vacuum, blower & mulcher. It has a 250 max hp with a control that lets you choose the speed of the airflow. The easy-to-use controls allow you to make an immediate change from blower to vacuum or mulcher.
Grinds up and minimizes mulch
Easy to use controls
Just one type of nozzle
What Types of Leaf Blowers Are Available?
There are five general types of leaf blowers. These include electric, battery-operated cordless, gas-held, gas-powered backpacks and gas-powered wheeled or walk-behind. The choice you make depends on the size of your lawn, the use you’re going to give the blower, and the speed and power you need. Here is a better definition of each type so you can find the best leaf blower for your needs.
These are corded products and the benefit is that the models are lighter and quieter. They are also emission-free and do not use gasoline or oil. However, they do need you to work close to a power outlet and require a long extension cord.
These models are also electric as you have to charge the battery period the benefit and using them is that they are battery-powered and portable. So you do not need to have an extension cord or power outlet close by. however, they do have a limited run time which depends on the voltage and battery capacity.
Gas-Powered Handheld Models
Gas-powered models offer more power and are appropriate for large areas. They do not need to be plugged into the power outlet so you can move them further out. These units also offer Speed and can get the job done more quickly. However, gas-powered leaf blowers can be hard to start, just like gas-powered lawnmowers. Even so, these types of leaf blowers are more durable than electric or battery-powered blowers, but they are also heavier, more expensive, noisier, and require maintenance. Gas models come in either 2-stroke or 4-stroke engines. The four-stroke engine means that you do not need to mix fuel and oil and can simply add gas.
Backpack Gas Powered Leaf Blower
These models are more powerful than standard hand-held leaf blowers. They are ideal for large properties or jobs that take a long time. The backpack models are generally preferred by landscapers because the backpack distributes the weight of the machine evenly over the shoulders, back, and arms.
Wheeled or Walk Behind Leaf Blowers
These are large leaf-blowing units and ideal for commercial properties, golf courses, and other types of large areas. They require a lot of storage area because of their size. The benefit is that they are almost automatic and don’t require hands-on control while in operation.
How to Choose The Right Blower
The first thing to consider is where you plan on using the blower and its comfort while using it. Decide on whether you need just a blower or one with other features like a vacuum and mulcher. If you decide to go for a dual or triple-purpose machine, you want it easy to use and make those changes.
Once you ask yourself what you need the leaf blower for, your final selection is simple. To help you make that decision we’ve listed 8 top leaf blowers currently on the market.
What Are the Benefits of Using a Leaf Blower?
Like many other yard tools, a leaf blower is an investment. And it can be an important one when you have a large yard with a lot of trees (with huge amounts of falling leaves.) So, if you live on a property with trees like ash, aspen, birch, cherry, beech, oak, and maple, you really do need a leaf blower when the fall season hits. However, many homeowners also find other interesting uses for a leaf blower/vacuum which come into play throughout the year.
The following are a few of the different uses for leaf blowers and these are chores the leaf vacuum or blower can take care of at any time of the year:
- Vacuum leaves, dust, and debris from garden pathways and drives
- Remove dirt, dust, small twigs, and junk from gardens, drives, and pathways
- Remove or vacuum up grass clippings
- Clean outdoor furniture
- Remove debris from rain gutters
- Clean farming equipment
- Remove hail or light snow damage
- Clean garage floors
What Features Are Important?
The answer to that question depends on who is using the leaf blower, the size of the yard, and other needs you might have. the following are a few considerations to take into account.
Leaf blowers come in different weights. Usually, the heavier units have more commercial use. These units are more appropriate for landscapers and large property owners. As a general rule, heavy leaf blowers are also more durable. However, they can be hard to carry around for people who are not used to the weight. Depending on the number of chores you have to do, you always want to keep in mind the weight and the length of time you will be holding the unit. When you have a large property and landscaped area, then you might want to decide to use a gas-powered backpack leaf blower. However, if you’re yard is small then a small corded electric leaf blower may be sufficient.
Leaf blowers make noise just like lawnmowers. However, different models produced varying levels of noise. The noise level of a unit depends on the manufacturer, the type of leaf blower, the size of the blower, and the size of your lawn. For varying reasons, either health-related or socially related, it is a good idea to take the noise level of any leaf, vacuum, or mulcher you consider buying into consideration.
Leaf blowers also come as battery-powered units. It’s important that you consider the power of a battery, especially when related to the size of your yard. If you have a small outdoor area, then a smaller battery-operated leaf blower will suffice. But when you need a leaf blower for a larger area comma you will also need a more potent battery-operated blower. So when looking for the best leaf blower in this category, there are two things you should consider.
This is the power level of the battery. Most battery-operated leaf blowers run at 20 volts. However, there are some larger units that run at 40 to 56 volts.
This is the amp reading add that refers to the running time of the battery. The larger the capacity the leaf blower vacuum will work. Note: When leaning towards a battery-operated leaf blower for your large yard, you might want to buy an extra battery. This way you will always have enough capacity to complete your job
Have you stopped to think of how you will collect that pile of blown leaves? Yes, you can get a rake. and a trash bag out and do it manually. however, you are in the process of buying the best leaf blower for your needs, and many of these products come with vacuuming and mulching power. A leaf vacuum mulcher can get the entire job done without your having to do any manual pickup tasks. When you have a large property or yard and a lot of leaves to clear out, consider a leaf blower with vacuuming and mulching capability. These units also have collection bags. The best leaf blower in this category how’s it collection bag that is not too bulky and is easy to remove and clean.
Easy to Switch
Some blowers require that you switch from one nozzle to another and attach the collection bag when you change from blower mode to vacuum. This can be cumbersome so look for a model with easy switch modes or built-in features.
An important consideration is the leaf blower’s speed. Who has a medium-to-large sized yard and a lot of leaves need a leaf blower with a larger speed to get the job done quickly? An electric leaf blower might deliver up to 160 mph whereas a gas-powered model might have a blowing speed of 170 miles per hour. professional landscapers prefer higher speeds in larger areas.
Most people have become environmentally conscience. So gardeners often look for environmentally friendly products and tools. This might be another reason to choose an electric-powered leaf blower or a battery-powered one over a gas-powered model. Take note: An electric-powered or battery-powered leaf blower is not always as powerful as a gas-powered unit.
Gas-powered leaf blowers require a gasoline and oil mixture. If you purchase a model from this category, be sure to read the instructions carefully. Some gasoline types can damage the leaf blower engine.
- Face Masks. It is important to wear a face mask especially if you are using a gas-powered leaf blower. A mask protects you from debris and also from gas fumes.
- Safety Goggles. Wearing eye protection offers safety from flying debris.
- Protect Children. Keep kids away from Leaf blowing activities. Be aware of people who are around you when using either an electric leaf blower, a battery-operated, or a gasoline-powered unit. Bystanders should stand at least 50 feet away from an operating leaf blower.
- Medications and Alcohol. These are substances you should refrain from taking when using any yard tool but especially mowers and leaf blowers.
- Be aware of possible overheating issues. Smaller handheld leaf-blowing models tend to overheat when you try to use them in large areas. if you are looking for a leaf blower for your large property, you need to purchase a large and powerful unit.
- Like lawnmowers, leaf blowers can be dangerous when used improperly. be sure to read all instructions before using your model. Always blow in the direction suggested by the manufacturer’s directions.
- Whether you buy a gas-powered hip lower or an electric leaf blower, you always want to use the model in a well-ventilated area.
- Check the working condition. problems are more frequent for older leaf blowers. Be sure to use a blower that is in excellent working condition.
- Avoid using any type of leaf blower while standing on a ladder four up in a tree. If lowing out gutters, be sure to think of your safety first.
- Every leaf vacuum, Mulcher, or blower requires that you wear protective clothing period this means you should wear short 2 long sleeve shirts, jeans or long shorts, and closed in shoes.
- Use gloves. When working with blowers that run at high speeds, these machines can sometimes release a static charge.
- Can you buy a gas-powered leaf blower, be careful when using the gas and oil mixture. Be sure to read the instructions carefully, mix accordingly and store fuels appropriately.
- Be considerate of your neighbors when using your leaf blower, especially when it is a battery-operated or gas-powered unit. Just use your common sense here. in other words, don’t go out before 7 in the morning on weekends to blow off the walkway.
Is Gas or Electric Better?
Leaf blowers are either powered by gas or electric motors, and each type has certain advantages over the other. So your choice should depend on the type of work you need to get done. In general, gasoline leaf blowers offer more durability and power. On the other hand, electric leaf blowers are lighter, easier to start, and don’t require maintenance, however, their product lifespan is not overly long either. Within the electric category, you will also find corded and battery power models. Just note that when it comes to battery, motors may not be as powerful due to the recharge needs of the battery.
What are CFM & MPH?
Leaf blowers are measured by their CFM and MPH ratings. The CFM stands for cubic feet per minute and measures the amount of air moved by the motor in a single minute. the mph stands for miles per hour and measures the speed of the air coming out of the blower. These numbers are important. However, the CFM rating is generally more significant. So for instance, if you’re looking for a small blower, look for a CFM rating of about 300. And if you need a motor that will get larger jobs done then you want are CFM rating of at least 500.
Handheld or Backpack: What is the difference?
Gas-powered leaf blowers come in three different styles, a handheld, a backpack or a wheeled type. Each of these styles is suited to different jobs. For instance, a handheld leaf blower is small and compact, but it is also the least powerful of the two. But it isn’t very expensive and works ideally in small to mid-sized yards (appropriate for most homeowners).
Backpack leaf blowers are larger and heavier, but they have a harness that allows you to carry them like a backpack. The purpose of this style is to take the weight off of your arms and balance it on your back. This allows you the use a leaf blower for a longer period of time.
Wheeled gas-powered leaf blowers are more commercial and used in very large properties or green areas.
As you can see there are many types of leaf blowers, and the price reflects the use. Base your decision on the use you will give the leaf blower. If for instance, you have a smaller yard you may not need a large backpack leaf blower and may want to opt for a smaller handheld electric leaf blower.
Our Top Pick
If we had to choose one top leaf blower, we would choose the Toro 51621 UltraPlus Leaf Blower for its durability and versatility. The three-in-one action is a big plus for us. The design which allows for a balanced hold and a durable unit is also a big plus. However, this unit is for mid-sized jobs and is probably not the best choice for a professional landscaper.