The Best Three-Stage Snow Blowers for Heavy Winters - Backyard Boss
We are reader supported. External links may earn us a commission.

The Best Three-Stage Snow Blowers for Heavy Winters

Three-stage snow blowers can take on massive amounts of snow, tackling banks up to 24 inches in height and throwing snow more than 30 feet. It’s a must-have tool if you live in an area that gets tons of snow every winter. You’ll need a three-stage snow blower if you struggle to stay on top of clearing your property with your single or two-stage blower.

Our in-depth reviews and overviews will help you pick the best three-stage snow blower for your needs.

Our Top Three-Stage Snow Blowers for 2021

Cub Cadet Three-Stage Gas Snow Blower - The Best Three-Stage Snow Blowers for Heavy Winters Cub Cadet Three-Stage Gas Snow Blower
  • 357cc cub cadet electric start engine
  • Clearing Width and Height: 26 by 21 Inches
  • 3-Year Limited Residential Warranty
Check The Price
Troy-Bilt XP Three-Stage Gas Snow Blower - The Best Three-Stage Snow Blowers for Heavy Winters Troy-Bilt XP Three-Stage Gas Snow Blower
  • 357cc Troy-Bilt electric start engine
  • Clearing Width and Height: 28 by 21 Inches
  • 2-Year Limited Warranty
Check The Price
Wen Three-Stage Self-Propelled Snow Blower - The Best Three-Stage Snow Blowers for Heavy Winters Wen Three-Stage Self-Propelled Snow Blower
  • 212cc engine
  • Clearing Width and Height: 24 by 21 inches
  • 2-Year Warranty
Check The Price
Troy-Bilt Vortex Three-Stage Snow Blower - The Best Three-Stage Snow Blowers for Heavy Winters Troy-Bilt Vortex Three-Stage Snow Blower
  • 272cc Troy-Bilt electric start engine
  • Clearing Width and Height: 24 by 21 inches
  • Warranty: 2-Year Limited warranty
Check The Price

Why You Should Trust Us

If your home is drowning in snow, then Backyard Boss has got you covered. From real-world experience and in-depth research, we’ve developed deep expertise on snow removal topics, writing about every snow removal subject under the sun.

We’ve reviewed the best snow blowers on the market, we can help you decide whether a three-stage or two-stage snow blower is best for you, we’ve examined how effective handheld power brooms are, and we can even tell you what the best ergonomic snow shovel is.

Dealing with winter weather doesn’t have to be a hassle this year, just check out our extremely helpful comprehensive guides and reviews.

Top 4 Three-Stage Snow Blower Reviews

The Most Convenient Three Stage Snow Blower

Cub Cadet Three-Stage Gas Snow Blower
    This impressively powerful snow blower is easy to use and control, with helpful features like hand warmers and dual headlights.



This impressively strong snow blower easily cuts through ice and snow at a rate that is 50% faster than two-stage snow blowers. Its high-speed induction accelerator pulls in snow, stimulating a forward motion that makes pushing it effortless.

You have complete control over where your machine deposits snow by utilizing the OHV crank to rotate the chute as much as 200 degrees. The triggered control power steering gives your unmatched control over this powerful machine.

Cub Cadet really thought of everything. It even comes with heated handgrips. Its revolutionary cool blue skid shoes glide along snowy surfaces, resulting in better maneuverability and no damage to your driveway.

Not only is this machine powerful, but it’s also convenient to use with LED dual headlights that will make working in the dark or amongst storms possible, lighting up the path before you and lightening your load.

This capable machine has a 26-inch clearing width and a 21-inch intake height which makes it perfect for serious storms. The only downside of this snow blower is that some people have complained about its parts being cheaply made or poorly placed but customer service is largely responsive to those complaints.

The Most Powerful Snow Blower

Troy-Bilt XP Three-Stage Gas Snow Blower
    Control this powerful three-stage snow blower with just one hand, adjusting its speed and direction in an instance.



One of the best brands in snow blowers is Troy-Bilt, and they really hit the nail on the head with this one. This three-stage snow blower is built to tackle tough snowfalls that result in banks as tall as 18 inches.

Hate the time-intensive process of pull starting cold engines? There’s no need to with this three-stage snow blower because it has a time-saving electric start.

This machine will not falter when faced with harsh conditions thanks to its D-Track drive system which provides it with additional stability and traction by creating 50% more ground contact.

Never used a three-stage snow blower before? No problem. You’ll be able to quickly shift directions and operate this machine with power steering that can be guided with just one hand. Adjust your snow blower’s chute or speed in an instant.

This easy-to-use machine even has heated grips to provide you with additional comfort. Protect your driveways and pathways with this snow blower’s polymer skid shoes which are designed not to damage them.

This impressive machine’s only downfalls are that it has limited reverse capabilities and is fairly expensive. Otherwise, if you consistently face severe winter storms, this is an excellent option for you.

The Most Affordable Three-Stage Snow Blower

Wen Three-Stage Self-Propelled Snow Blower
    With an affordable price and an easy-to-operate system, this self-propelled machine is perfect for people new to snow blowers.



While this incredible three-stage snow blower won’t break the bank, it will break you out of tough winter situations, with the capability to take on snowbanks up to 21 inches deep and 24 inches wide.

You’ll never be snowed in again once you own this impressively strong machine. Its powerful 212cc engine can blast through over 1800 pounds of snow per minute. Its long, easy to operate chute can throw snow up to 30 feet away.

Hate pushing snow blowers? Then you’ll love that this one is self-propelled with 6 different speed settings; four forward settings and two reverse ones. Its rugged 13-inch snow tires will have no trouble traveling over snow-covered terrains. Not only is this snow blower easy to push, but it’s also easy to operate, featuring a crank handle that can rotate its chute 190 degrees.

This is one of the most affordable snow blowers on this list, however, that low cost is reflected in some of the parts feeling like they were cheaply made. Otherwise, this is a great machine for people who want a smooth and easy snow blowing experience.

Best Snow Blower Overall

Troy-Bilt Vortex Three-Stage Snow Blower
    This hassle-free but extremely powerful snow blower will blast through snowbanks that are over a foot tall.



I know, another Troy-Bilt. What can I say? They make incredible snow blowers.

If you need a snow blower that can handle packed snowbanks and pulverize ice, then this is the perfect machine for you. This innovative snow blower easily plows through over a foot of snow.

Although it has the power of a gas engine, it has the convenience of an electric one with a hassle-free push-button electric start that will allow you to spend more time snow blowing and less time trying to turn on your blower’s engine.

Its power steering can be controlled with one hand, or even the touch of a button, allowing you to quickly and neatly shift directions. Using the 4-way joystick chute control you can also alter where your chute is aimed, however, it’s not the easiest control to use. My main complaint about the Vortex was that adjusting the chute can be difficult.

Adding extra comfort is this machine’s wonderful heated grips, while its X-Trac snow tires provide you with added stability. It even features in-dash headlights that enable you to safely snow blow even when it’s dark outside.

If you want a powerful, hassle-free three-stage snow blower, this is the perfect machine for you.

What Is a Three-Stage Snow Blower?

Unlike two-stage snow blowers, three-stage snow blowers have a second auger in place, which gives them more power. The first auger pulls ice chunks and snow into the discharge impeller fan while the second auger pulverizes compacted snow and ice by rotating 10 times as fast.

Three-stage snow blowers can intake snowbanks up to 21 inches tall and have wide clearing widths, normally 2 feet in size. They can also throw snow great distances, normally around 30 feet away.

If you live in a place that gets heavy quantities of snow dumped on it, and want to ensure that your driveway and yard are clear of slippery ice and obstructions, then a three-stage snow blower is a great option for you.

If you need some more clarification on the differences between different types of snow blowers, check out the video below!

How Does a Three-Stage Snow Blower Work?

Normally, three-stage snow blowers are powered by gas but have an electric start. Most are propelled by you, but there are some self-propelled options.

They intake snow and ice running them through their two augers, tearing and breaking apart large chunks. Then, through the power of their impeller fans, they shoot snow out through their chutes for distances as far as 30 feet away.

What Maintenance Does a Three-Stage Snow Blower Need?

After using your snow blower, always run it for a few minutes to give it a chance to clear out snow and ice to prevent the auger and impeller from freezing up. Then, before you put it away be sure to sweep it off so that no melting snow or ice causes rust or corrosion.

Before doing maintenance on your three-stage snow blower, make sure that you’ve completely disengaged its power and stopped its engine. This, and wearing safety goggles or gloves, will ensure that you don’t get hurt while working on your snow blower.

Check the bolts, pins, skid shoes, scraper bar, and plates, for wear, tear, and tightness. Verify the snow blower’s control levers and engage and disengage them correctly. Then, lubricate your machine. Be sure to follow the snow blower manufacturer’s instructions for lubricating it.

When you store your three-stage snow blower, put a fuel stabilizer in your gas and run the engine so you drain its oil. After draining the oil, refill it with fresh oil and change its filter. Clean your machine, de-gunking the air filter, scrubbing any parts that are at risk for rusting, and spraying fogging oil on its cylinders and engine. Once you’ve complete all of the above tasks, your snow blower is good to store until the next storm.

For more snow blower maintenance tips, check out the video below!

How to Choose the Best Three-Stage Snow Blower For You?

Not all three-stage snow blowers were created equal. Before deciding on which model is right for you, consider your preferences in regard to the features below.

Snow Depth

If you typically only get light dustings of snow in the winter, don’t buy a three-stage snow blower, buy a shovel. These machines are designed to handle snowstorms that result in feets of snow, not inches. Three-stage snow blowers can handle anywhere from 18 – 24 inches of snow, depending on the model.


While some three-stage snow blowers are self-propelled, not all of them are, so their weight can be very important. A heavy three-stage snow blower will be much harder to push than a lightweight one, and you’re the one who has to do the pushing, so go easy on yourself, don’t get one that’s too heavy.

Engine Power

The large majority of three-stage snow blowers are gas-powered because that enables them to last longer and be more powerful. The better your snow blower’s engine, the more snow it will be able to tear through. Engine quality can be deduced from a brand’s reputation, the length of its warranty, the valve configuration, and displacement.

Clearing Width and Intake Height

While the vast majority of three-stage snow blowers have a listed intake height of 21 inches and the capability to take on up to 24 inches, the clearing width that they can handle greatly varies.

Snow blowers may have clearing widths as low as 18 inches or as wide as 26 inches. The main advantage of a larger clearing width is that the bigger the width, the less time you’ll have to spend clearing snow.

It’s also worth considering matching your snow blower’s clearing width to the size of your pathways so you only have to go over them once. Keep in mind, a clearing width that is much larger than your pathways may lead to balance issues.

How We Picked

Among all the impressive three-stage snow blowers on the market, we looked for models that not only had power, but also convenient features like headlights, heated handgrips, easy to use controls, electric push starters, and self-propulsion. We made sure to choose a range of options, some more premium and some more affordable. Lastly, we looked for snow blowers that could absolutely get the job done, powering through tall and wide snowbanks.

Although every single three-stage snow blower on our list was impressive, there can only be one ultimate winner.

Our Favorite Three-Stage Snow Blower

Our favorite three-stage snow blower was the Troy-Bilt Vortex Three-Stage Snow Blower. It perfectly balanced strength and convenience, with a high-quality construction and desirable features like heated handgrips and headlights.

Just because it was our favorite doesn’t mean it has to be yours. If one of the other snow blowers on this list called to you, then go for it.