Customer Reviews: Hitachi RB24EAP 23.9cc 2-Cycle Gas Powered 170 MPH Handheld Leaf Blower (CARB Compliant)
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on September 13, 2011
This is a quality machine - and is the same as the Tanaka, a brand used by many pro gardeners and landscape maintenance persons. I've had McCulloch, Ryobi and a Sears Craftsman (that I returned after the first use). This machine is lighter, runs much quieter, and has quite a bit more power than any of the others. It isn't really in the same league. This one runs flawlessly, has a ton of power, and a quality feel.

Be aware of the mph ratings on some of these yard blowers. They get those ratings by including a worthless little tiny nozzle. That's how the Craftsman got its impressive ratings. But the thing had very poor real-world performance. This Hitachi doesn't come with gimmicky nozzles. You get ONE nozzle, that you always leave on, and that one works very well. For normal yard cleanup where you can't justify one of the expensive backpack units, this one has plenty of grunt.

I originally wanted a blower-vac. No longer. The vac units all get mediocre reviews at best. The Sears blower I had for week was a poor performer, and the vac feature was useless. If you're like me and think you need the vac, re-think it. You probably don't need that worthless feature, and besides, it is a pain on most of these to convert from blower to vacuum. I suggest that you will be much happier with a quality blower-only.

Some of the newer machines have a trigger lock so that you don't always have to hold the trigger. Unless you have a huge yard and are going to use the blower for an hour nonstop, that's another feature that you don't need. In this case it would be nice to have, but don't base your buying decision on it.

I think this one is a great choice. It's not too much money - actually about $25 less money than the Echo at the local home improvement store, has a 7 year consumer warranty, starts easy hot or cold, and really moves some air.

Update - As many have noted, the fuel lines on these have a problem. Mine wouldn't start. the problem was the lines that ran to the primer bulb. Changed them, and now it runs like a champ again. It is too bad that this otherwise great tool has this problem, but it is still so much better than the other blowers in this price range (or even substantially more expensive) that I give it 5 stars and can honestly say I wouldn't have anything else.
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on July 19, 2015
Lightweight, a little loud, but really throws a huge volume of air! It's much better performance than the leaf vac/blower combo I replaced. Plus the blower tube stays on the blower, my old one would always fall off.

I bought this blower in Sept 2011 and got 3 solid summers out of it with no issues at all. 4th summer was a different story, as I started to experience stalling issues. It would start back up then stall again. I looked at the fuel lines and found the black tube was starting to perforate right where it connects to the carb; and the pink / clear looking line from the primer bulb was disintegrating inside the plastic fuel tank. Looks like ethanol in the fuel was eating away at these parts.

I bought some exact replacement parts this summer from ereplacementparts dot com. Black fuel line p/n 6698716 and the pink (or clear looking) fuel pipe p/n 669-8401. Granted I wish I didn't need to do any of this in the first place but it was an easy repair and cost less than $10. In the future I will avoid getting gas with ethanol in it, use a good fuel stabilizer, and take out the fuel and burn any leftover fuel in the carb before winter storage here in Michigan.
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on April 19, 2011
I agree with all of the excellent reviews. I would add just one tip: This blower is equivalent to the Tanaka TRB24EAP. The only differences are the the extra "T" in the model number, color, the name on the label, AND where you can get it serviced under that great 7-year warranty. They are even priced the same on Amazon as of this review.

Tip: Take a few minutes to search the and web sites to see which make has the most convenient certified repair shops for you.

I managed to break the fuel pipe while moving things around in the shed in a hurry (my fault). I'm in a major metropolitan area with several small engine repair shops within a short drive, but the nearest certified Hitachi repair shop is an hour away. In contrast, the nearest Tanaka repair shop is 5 minutes away (there seem to be more Tanaka dealers in general). I'm going to pay for the repair out-of-pocket rather than driving 2 hours round trip or taking the time to mail the thing back to the factory for service.
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on November 18, 2010
I own an Echo backpack blower and a small handheld Weedeater blower. I live on 5 acres with a 300 foot long concrete driveway and hundreds of pine trees and many oaks. As it turns out, the oaks are close to the driveway. On any given fall day, after a good wind, I can find 5" of leaves on the driveway. I have always used the Echo for serious leaf moving and the Weedeater for smaller stuff. A few days ago, the Weedeater quit and I started looking for another "smaller stuff" blower.

The Hitachi (also sold as a Tanaka) came tonight and I just returned from cleaning off the driveway, the front and back porch and a few flower beds in about 1/2 the time it would have taken with the Echo backpack blower. I wouldn't have taken on that much of a workload with the Weedeater (even if it was willing to run).

This blower is powerful, light and easy to control. It putts along at idle and is effective enough to take care of leaves in delicate flower beds. At anything above idle, you have complete control all the way up to blasting a wall of leaves without losing control of the direction of the pile. If I could give this thing 10 stars, I would.
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on December 24, 2011
Received it November 20, used it three times .... Died December 23rd. RIP. No fuel draw and primer bulb has failed. Needless to say I am not happy with this unit. One would think for as longer as leaf blowers and 2 ccle engines have been on the market quality and reliability should be a no brainer ..... So much for Kizan and 6 Sigma. We need to start building these things in the U.S.

Update 12/28/2011: As some have indicated there is an issue with one of the fuel lines. The problem is with the fuel line that goes to the priming bulb. It's hard to see but if you look at your manual (the very last page once you get past all the other languages) there is an exploded view of system. Look for item 32 and you can see that there are two hoses running to the bulb. Go look at your unit behind the bulb. If you see only one hose look past it and there probably is a hose all the way in the back laying there disconnected. As someone pointed out you have to disassemble the carb by removing two screws behind the air filter cover that hold it together. Be careful of the carb gasket. Once disassembled you will see the cause of the problem right away. The hose is too short and any stress on it will disconnect it. Plus it's almost impossible to reassemble it with this short piece. I took the hose to a local hobby store that sells model airplanes and bought a piece of fuel hose. Cut it about an inch longer than the original piece. I put the spring back in it and reassembled the unit and it works now. This was my solution. I'm not recommending that you do the same.
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on February 7, 2011
I was skeptical about the performance of this blower even after reading other reviews. Epinions lacked reviews. With the sale price as it was, I couldn't pass this blower up. I found the Hitachi RB24EAP quite powerfull, able to blow small rocks and sweet gum balls as well as leaves. I was worried that the blower would overpower me since one review stated the blower went to one side at high power (I assume the effect of centrifical force). I found this to be only a slight push. If you can pick up a bowling ball, you can use this blower without much trouble. Overall, I would rate this blower excellent and would highly recomend it.
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on October 11, 2011
Just as some other have written, there is a possibility of defect out of the box with this item, which is otherwise a great blower.
From the box, my unit would not start. After fiddling with it for over an hour as I noticed that no fuel was getting in the bulb or line (I got to drink some fuel blowing in lines, yummy!) I checked other small engines I owned, read some entries on this machine (Thanks S. McLean), looked at the schematics and found that a small line that goes from the carb should have ended at the back side of the bulb primer. A spring inside the fuel line that keeps it from kinking must have pushed it off the nipple where it belongs. Once connected, it ran like a charm.
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on June 18, 2011
Hello, I drive a big truck, and I bought this to blow out reefer trailers, when they are empty. It used to take me 15-20min. to try and sweep out a trailer, when empty. Now it takes me about 5min.,and it always starts easily.It has plenty of power, and also blow drys out any water, if there is some. I would recommend this leaf blower to anyone. As a side note: I use premixed TRUFUEL, it comes in it's own premixed can, so I don't need a gas can, and it contains no ethanol. 2cycle engines have major problems with ethanol based fuel.
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on October 18, 2011
I bought it 2 years ago. I was good until the 2nd year. First the blower very slowly lost some blowing power. Then last week, as it was running, it made loud sharp metal noises like some loose metal banging inside. And that was it, the noises remained. The warranty was for 5 or 7 years (I forgot which), so I went online to report to Hitachi. The site said the blower had to be checked by "an authorized Hitachi service center first". OK...OK..They provided a map in the US to locate the closest ones. It gets really good now: there are only 9 authorized centers in the US! The only way to get to the closest one to me is to fly there by air! It is less expensive just to ditch away the blower!
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on November 19, 2011
The first time I used this product, it worked OK, though it was difficult to get started. The second time I tried to use it I couldn't get it started. Seems like maybe the fuel primer isn't working. Waste of money. Good thing I kept my electric blower, even though having to deal with the cord drives me crazy. That's why I thought I would try a gas-powered unit. This product was obviously the wrong choice.

Update: Next day. Read some more reviews. Like others, I had a black fuel line that had disconnected itself. Had to unsnap the black plastic housing that surrounds the carburetor and remove two long screws to disconnect the carburetor from the rest of the unit. There's a black fuel line that goes from just next to the back of the primer bulb to the carburetor. It was disconnected at the primer bulb side. There's a spring inside the line which was showing at the end of the fuel line. Pushed that spring back into the line and reconnected the fuel line. It immediately popped off again. Removed the fuel line from both ends, turned it around and reconnected both ends, and it stayed connected (for now, anyway). Performed normal starting procedure and it started right up. Not too bad for a guy who's not that handy. But, really, Hitachi, I shouldn't have to do that.

Update 2012.07.14: I was going to bump my rating up to three stars, but since I had trouble starting it today (for the second time in the past month), I'll back off to two stars. I think that both times I've had trouble starting it, it was when I had been using it about an hour earlier, then turned it off. When I come back later to use it again, I have trouble starting it. I am following the instructions. But it does eventually start. And when it works, well, it blows, which is what it's supposed to do, and it does that well. I don't miss my old blower with the electric cord at all. Thinking of getting a gas-powered string trimmer now.
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