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Best Cheap Snow Blower

Mother Nature doesn’t take your budget into account before dumping a load of snowfall on your driveway. The good news is, you don’t have to give in to buying a $10 snow shovel and waking up an hour or two early in the morning to deal with the accumulating white stuff on your walkways because there are some affordable snow blowers out there. You won’t have to spend $1,000 to save time and your back with these cheap snow blowers, but you will need at least $100 – and as much as $400 – to get a good snow-eating machine to clear your sidewalks, driveway, and more. You’ll have to compromise a little, but not as much as you’d expect.

5 Best Cheap Snow Blower Comparisons

Model
          Features
Power Smart DB5023 Electric Snow Thrower


  • Motor: 13 amps
  • Clearing width: 18 inches
  • Clearing depth: 9 inches
  • Throw distance: 30 feet
  • Weight: 37 lbs.
  • Warranty: 1 year
Snow Joe Ultra SJ623E Electric Snow Thrower with Light


  • Motor: 15 amps
  • Clearing width: 18 inches
  • Clearing depth: 10 inches
  • Plowing capacity: 720 lbs./min.
  • Throw distance: 25 feet
  • Weight: 33.7 lbs.
  • Warranty: 2 years
WEN 5662 Snow Blaster Electric Snow Thrower


  • Motor: 13 amps
  • Clearing width: 18 inches
  • Clearing depth: 7.8 inches
  • Plowing capacity: 490 lbs./min.
  • Throw distance: 20 feet
  • Weight: 39 lbs.
  • Warranty: 1 years
Snow Joe Ultra SJ625E Electric Snow Thrower




  • Motor: 15 amps
  • Clearing width: 21 inches
  • Clearing depth: 12 inches
  • Plowing capacity: 800 lbs./min.
  • Throw distance: 20 feet
  • Weight: 35.7 lbs.
  • Warranty: 2 years
YARDMAX YB5765 Two-Stage Snow Blower


  • Type: Gas
  • Clearing width: 22 inches
  • Clearing depth: 10 inches
  • Engine: 196 cc
  • Weight: 125 lbs.
  • Warranty: 2 years

Can a Snow Blower Be Effective and Affordable?

It seems like a cheap snow blower isn’t going to do much other than whoosh away the top layer of drifted material, but technology has improved these machines, and the competition is strong. Prices drop as companies manufacture better machines each year, and in the end, you win.

It’s important to understand that a thrower or blower unit that is both effective and inexpensive is usually meant for smaller homes and for less snowfall than what you get living in a snow belt. That isn’t to say that there isn’t an economical snow blower out there for you, even if you’re dealing with piles and piles of the dreaded white stuff every winter season.

Snow Thrower

Generally, the cheaper snow-moving machine is going to be a thrower. These are single-stage units that only include one auger, that’s usually made of plastic or rubber, and it moves material in a single movement.

It picks up the snowfall with its one rotating blade, pushed it to the impeller and then out the chute. They’re almost always electric-powered, which means you’ll have to deal with cords, but that’s how it goes. Most of the parts are made of cheaper materials, such as plastic, and that’s what keeps the costs down.

 

Plastic parts don’t necessarily mean ineffectiveness. A plastic chute, for example, won’t get dented or chipped by rocks and gravel the way metal can. However, you typically don’t want to use a single-stage thrower model on a gravelly surface, anyway, as the mouth of the machine sits flush with the ground. What this means is that you will get a clean walkway or driveway or deck, all the way down to the ground, making this a great choice for surfaces that would be damaged otherwise by metal parts.

Additionally, a thrower that’s electric-powered requires little to no maintenance. You don’t have to worry about having gas on hand or engine oil to keep it running, and it starts reliably every time – there’s no pull-cord starting that has to happen. You won’t need to summarize your thrower, and there’s little to worry about when it comes to the carburetor.

Snow Blower

Usually, a blower is a term reserved for gas-powered two- and three-stage blowers. These snow-blowing machines are usually quite a bit heavier – by about 100 pounds – and more powerful than regular throwers.

They are also a bit more expensive, but there are a few out there that are affordable. The reason they’re more expensive is because they’re simply more machine and more capable of handling the wet, heavy snowfall that many people in the north and Midwest have to deal with.

The blowers are usually a good idea if you have a gravel driveway because they typically include shoes that are adjustable and allow you to lift the mouth up from the ground. You wouldn’t want a metal mouth to scrape along on your walkways, wooden deck, porch, or driveway, anyway. Because of this small lift, though, it won’t pick up rocks and pebbles and then shoot them across your lawn, which can be a dangerous thing.

A blower unit is usually powered by gas, which means you will need to make sure it has enough fuel every season. And you’ll have to keep it full of engine oil. Your blower may need some attention during the season, or afterward, and before the next season to ensure it keeps running as intended. Maintenance for these machines is much more involved than it is for a thrower model. But it’ll also work faster and harder to clear packed snowfall and icy material.

Features You Might Miss on Bigger, More Expensive Snow Blowers

Snow blowers these days have almost become luxury items if you’re looking at the more expensive units. You can find some that include all sorts of extras that you might expect in a luxury car – not a blower. To get the best price, you may have to come to terms with the fact that you aren’t going to get some of these bonuses with a less expensive thrower or blower.

Heated Hand Grips

Offered on some of the higher-end snowblower models, these are hand grips that warm up when you power on your snow blower to keep your hands from going numb while you plow and throw the snowfall from your driveway to your yard.

Headlight

Some of the less expensive units might include a small headlight, but usually not. You can usually find LED and halogen headlights added onto the more expensive blowers to help you see in the dark predawn hours.

Cup Holder

Yes, this is a feature that’s found on some of the more expensive snow blowers out there, but you’re way less likely to find them on the affordable options.

Top 5 Best Cheap Snow Blower Reviews

Here are the 5 best snow blowers under $500!

Power Smart DB5023 18-inch 13 Amp Electric Snow Thrower

Quick Info

  • Motor: 13 amps
  • Clearing width: 18 inches
  • Clearing depth: 9 inches
  • Throw distance: 30 feet
  • Weight: 37 lbs.
  • Warranty: 1 year

It may be hard to believe that there’s such thing as a thrower that comes in under $100, but the Power Smart DB5023 manages to do it. This is a small snow thrower that includes a 13-amp motor to give you the power you need to suck up the fluffy snowfall that’s just fallen and throw it to your yard and out of your way. It can throw snowfall up to 30 feet away if the conditions are just right. The rubber-tipped auger won’t damage the surfaces you’re clearing, and the chute is easy to direct where you want the material to go.

This snow thrower does best with light to moderate snowfall, but it can handle up to 8-inch tall banks if you’re patient with it. It’s also a good idea to stay on top of the snowfall that’s coming down. Clear it when you can, so it doesn’t start getting packed and making it harder to clear later on. The tiny plastic wheels don’t seem sturdy enough, but it’s more efficient than you’d expect.

Pros

  • Most affordable
  • Rubber-tipped auger
  • Lightweight
  • Good for light to moderate snow

Cons

  • Tiny wheels
  • Short warranty
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Pro tip

If you need the most affordable snow thrower to clear your driveway and walkways all the way to the ground, this one might be ideal for you.

Snow Joe Ultra SJ623E 18-Inch 15-Amp Electric Snow Thrower with Light

Quick Info

  • Motor: 15 amps
  • Clearing width: 18 inches
  • Clearing depth: 10 inches
  • Plowing capacity: 720 lbs./min.
  • Throw distance: 25 feet
  • Weight: 33.7 lbs.
  • Warranty: 2 years

The Snow Joe Ultra SJ623E looks like an amped up wheel-free lawn mower, but instead of cutting grass, it cuts through material that’s piled up on your driveway, sidewalks, porch, and back deck. It includes a 15-amp motor, which provides enough power to easily handle light and fluffy snow. In fact, under perfect conditions, this thrower can move up to 720 pounds of material per minute, which is impressive. Just direct the chute where you want it from side to side, or in front of you, and you can blow stuff up to 25 feet away. The width of this Snow Joe Ultra is 18 inches, which lets you clear material in fewer passes than, say, a shovel. And the intake is 10 inches high, which means it can theoretically handle up to 10-inch tall banks.

You have to remember, though, that this is just a single-stage thrower, so it can take out the light, fluffy stuff easily, but icy, hard-packed stuff takes a bit longer. This is a lightweight machine, so to really get at the harder stuff, you may need to put some power behind it at times. And unlike most throwers, this one comes with a built-in headlight, which helps you see what you’re doing at night or in those predawn hours when you need to clear the way.  

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Good power
  • Has a chute cleaning tool
  • Includes a 20W halogen light

Cons

  • Doesn’t easily cut through hard-packed snow
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Pro tip

If you need the most affordable snow thrower to clear your driveway and walkways all the way to the ground, this one might be ideal for you.

WEN 5662 Snow Blaster 13.5-Amp Electric Snow Thrower, 18-Inch

Quick Info

  • Motor: 13 amps
  • Clearing width: 18 inches
  • Clearing depth: 7.8 inches
  • Plowing capacity: 490 lbs./min.
  • Throw distance: 20 feet
  • Weight: 39 lbs.
  • Warranty: 1 year

The WEN 5662 Snow Blaster is one of the most affordable snow throwers on the market – you can usually find it on sale for less than $100. That’s worth saving up for, so you won’t have to pick up a shovel again. The 18-inch wide mouth clears a large path that’s covered in freshly fallen snow quickly. The 13.5-amp motor makes quick work of those light to moderate snowfall, but it may slow down a bit in wet, heavy snow. Although this is a lightweight snow thrower compared to the heavier blowers, it has a bit more heft than most snow throwers in the same category. This extra bit of weight makes it easier to move around and tackle the bigger banks that may have built up around your property.

As long as you’re only battling about a foot of snowfall with each storm, this thrower may be all you need. It is a bit louder than most throwers, though, so if you have nearby neighbors, they might not appreciate its loud roar. Unless you clear their driveway, too.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Easy to move
  • Lightweight
  • Clears light snow quickly

Cons

  • Wet snow can bog it down
  • A bit loud
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Pro tip

If you’re in the market for a snow thrower that’s affordable and powerful for light to moderate snow, this could be the one.

Snow Joe Ultra SJ625E 21-Inch 15-Amp Electric Snow Thrower

Quick Info

  • Motor: 15 amps
  • Clearing width: 21 inches
  • Clearing depth: 12 inches
  • Plowing capacity: 800 lbs./min.
  • Throw distance: 20 feet
  • Weight: 35.7 lbs.
  • Warranty: 2 years

You’ll have to shell out a bit more money for this Snow Joe Ultra SJ625E, but you’re going to get more power, more clearance, and a bonus headlight that isn’t usually included with the less expensive snow throwers. The 15-amp motor can throw up to 800 pounds of snow per minute, but that’s under ideal conditions, such as light, fluffy snow that hasn’t melted and turned to slush. This snow thrower can handle wet, heavy, and packed snow, but it’s going to need you to be patient with it. Although this can’t quickly tackle whatever the snow plow left for you at the corner of your driveway, it is affordable and there’s next to no maintenance needed for this unit. It’s give and take.

But you aren’t compromising much with this snow thrower – you just have to put a little shoulder into pushing this through the packed snow. Plus, you get an LED headlight that’s built into the handle, which can help illuminate your path when you’re clearing your driveway and walking paths.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Powerful for electric
  • Has 3W LED light
  • Good warranty

Cons

  • Doesn’t handle wet, slushy snow that well
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Pro tip

If you need an affordable, compact snow thrower that can easily handle light snow, this one could be right for you.

YARDMAX YB5765 Two-Stage Snow Blower, 6.5 hp, 196cc, 22″

Quick Info

  • Type: Gas
  • Clearing width: 22 inches
  • Clearing depth: 10 inches
  • Engine: 196 cc
  • Weight: 125 lbs.
  • Warranty: 2 years

It’s hard to find an affordable two-stage snow blower, but the YARDMAX YB5765 manages to be the least expensive option for handling bigger snowstorms, icy snow banks, and larger driveways and walkways. The width of the mouth of this snow blower is 22 inches, which means you can clear areas in fewer passes than single-stage snow throwers. The serrated steel augers are able to chew through icy snow, break it up easily and then send it through the impeller and chute. Perhaps the biggest issue with this snow blower is that it has no electric start, so you’ll have to start it the way you would a standard lawn mower.

The good news is, it typically starts on the first pull. This snow blower is only 10 inches tall, so like most of its electric counterparts, it can’t quickly take down towers of snow that are taller than a foot, but if you have a bit of patience, it will handle it readily. Unlike snow thrower, this little snow blower can easily pick up wet snow and throw it to the side, although it won’t throw as far as light, soft snow. This is a good choice for gravelly driveways, as it sits slightly above the ground. This also means, though, that it won’t clear all the way to the ground. And the shoes are metal, so be sure to set it high enough so it doesn’t damage your surfaces.

Pros

  • Affordable for two-stage snow blower
  • Lightweight
  • Good for wet snow
  • Great value

Cons

  • No electric start
  • Has metal shoes
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Pro tip

If you need an affordable, compact snow thrower that can easily handle light snow, this one could be right for you.

The Bottom Line

A cheap snow blower isn’t a pipe dream. You can find several machines that are able to handle the snowfall on your driveway and not break the bank. Some perform a bit better than others, and the best snow blower includes a few extras you may not expect for the cost. While all of the snow throwers and snow blowers above fit the bill, the Snow Joe Ultra SJ623E 18-Inch 15-Amp Electric Snow Thrower with Light pulls ahead in front of the others because it’s powerful, lightweight, a good value, and includes a headlight, and a chute-cleaning tool. It can be a bit slow when it comes to packed and icy snow, but with a bit of patience, it’ll get through almost any snow Mother Nature throws at your driveway.

 

 

About The Author

Candace Osmond

Award Winning Designer, Candace Osmond has been in the industry for over a decade. She studied Interior Decorating & Design and is also an accomplished writer and multi-published author. When she's not typing away from the comforts of her desk, Candace can be found travelling to warm destinations, tending to her garden, or enjoying the outdoor haven that is her backyard. Candace currently resides in the breathtaking Maritimes of Eastern Canada with her husband, two beautiful kids and one slobbery bulldog.

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