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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So far so good., February 20, 2012
This review is from: Ariens ST28LE Deluxe 2-Stage Snowblower 921022
I ordered mine from homedepot.com for 999 and bought the standard delivery. It was shipped to a local small equipment dealer and was set up, checked and delivered with oil (no gas to speak of) ready to go 6 days after clicking 'order'. Total price 1085 delivered. Since we didn't have any fresh snow I 'had' to try it out on some existing snow along the street since the city didn't plow a very wide swath down our street. It took some "chewing" but it went through it fine. The only thing I see is that the tires came with a very full 20psi. They were way to hard to do anything but spin. I did some reading on some forums and had seen some people recommend lower tire pressures. I experimented with letting the air out to about 10 psi but that seemed a bit stiff still. The newer "rounder" profile of these tires didn't seem like they made much contact with the ground so I continued to lower the pressure until I could see and feel the weight of the machine "sponge" into the tires as I picked up the machine by the handle bars and let it sink into them a bit. When I lift or push on the handle bars the tires give a spongy feel to the back end. They now looked like they made a more intimate contact with the ground. I have a dirty concrete floor in the garage and manually moved the blower around and saw that the tread picked up dirt more evenly across the tread face. This should also prolong the tread as it is more evenly distributed as opposed to only the center line touching the ground. I have no idea what the pressure is finally but it is less than the 10 psi minimum that my gauge can read. I suppose there is always a danger of breaking the tire bead off the rim, but if you are careful not to exert too much side movement this shouldn't be a problem. A lot of side movement is avoided with the differential unlock feature so you can turn the machine around with ease. The machine is more than capable for suburban snow removal but notice that the distance between the auger's first stage auger and the housing is about 1/2 inch. This could be too close if you have a gravel drive way because rocks could get lodged in there and break a shear pin. I noticed that there is no shear pin per se in the 2nd stage impeller drive just 2 roll pins. Consumer reports best rated $1000 snowblower for handling, removal speed, throwing distance and with its 14-inch impeller, I have no doubt that I can put snow on my neighbors property from my driveway.

June, 2013 update. After several snowfalls here in Colorado, I'm am glad I bought the larger machine. Our wet heavy snow is just what this machine is made for. There was one snowfall this spring that made this one bog down. Had trouble throwing the slush more than 10 feet, but it did. Yay Ariens keep up the great work. Oh, BTW, I knew that the auger spacing was going to be a problem and when you get in the lawn and garden decor rocks, be ready to replace the shear pins, I did. Definitely not for gravel driveways.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a Monster!, February 9, 2013
This review is from: Ariens ST28LE Deluxe 2-Stage Snowblower 921022
He-Man would hold his sword in the air and yell "I have the Power!" but in my case, I turn the ignition, give 1 pull (Yes, just 1 easy pull) of the cord and this beast roars into action. It's a Monster and it almost seems like the more you feed it, the better it works. I've gone through heavy slush that the plow left and I've gone through 20" of freshly dumped snow ... eezy, peezy. You could almost hear it asking for "more, More, MORE!" It was throwing snow from the road onto my neighbours front step about 35 feet away and I even had one neighbour say "How did you get snow so high up into the tree" ... so I demonstrated :-) I've used a few snowblowers through the years, some of which felt like you were going to rip your shoulder joint before it started but this bad boy is awesome. I think my 8 year nephew could start it with a good pull. You WON'T be disappointed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing machine with superb engineering and design features, January 1, 2014
This review is from: Ariens ST28LE Deluxe 2-Stage Snowblower 921022
Have owned this unit for 5 snow falls of 2" to 6" each. It is a pleasure to use this snow thrower - easy to start, very maneuverable, great power, nice speed settings, THROWS snow via well designed augers and chute configuration plus more.

Compared this unit to 6 other units in this size and horsepower range. This unit offers value, reliability and with a Briggs and Stratton engine you will find parts for the next 20 plus years. Just retired my first snowblower after 37 years of hard work. Achieved this with regular maintenance (oil changes, non-ethanol laced fuel, regular belt changes, gapped and cleaned/replaced spark plug and proper storage). This unit will be used by my grandchildren as it will last 30 plus years.

I will buy the best unit available whether it is made in the USA or ??? This is a fine U.S. made unit with a fine design and engineering.

Engineer and fussy consumer.
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