2018 Briggs & Stratton Snow Blower Review – What’s New – Which One Is Best For You?

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What’s New For 2018 Briggs & Stratton Snow Blowers?

Briggs & Stratton has been quietly refining their snow blower line for the last three years. They have developed the well-received snow shredder single stage and redesigned their two-stage offerings so the snow blowers are easy to use. For 2018 Briggs & Stratton offers single stage, snow shredder single stage, Standard Series two-stage and an Elite Series two-stage.

How this article is laid out:

This is a very comprehensive article so it will take you a while to read through it. I’m going to start with the Single Stage and Snow Shredder models. After that, I’ll review the Standard and Elite 2-stage models.

Reading 2018 Briggs & Stratton Reviews:

  1. When you read snow blower reviews you are going to find reviews that state “the engine would not start,” “the engine won’t stay running.” and “the engine runs rough.” You will find these reviews for all brands and sizes of snow blowers. 98% of the time engine problems with name brand snow blowers are either fuel or operator related. Snow engines run/operate differently than your lawn mower engine and because of that, I suggest educating yourself on how to store fuel, how to keep your fuel clean and how/why your snow blower engine runs the way it does will go a long way to liking your new snow blower. Please read this article to learn more: Buying A New Snow Blower FAQS – Read This For The Truth
  2.  Reviews. B&S snow blowers come in a box and you have to install the handles, adjust the skid shoes, make sure the cables are routed correctly and the belt tension adjusted properly. The majority of the negative reviews are from owners who had problems with these steps. Don’t bother to read B&S reviews that are more than 2 years old.  B&S has updated all their snow blowers in the last three years.
  3. Belt Problems. The B&S 2-stage snow blowers are listed as light-medium duty. That means they work well for areas of the country that get up to 60 inches of snow but are not designed for areas that get more snow than that or get lots of heavy, wet snows.  If you live in the Northeast, Long Island or areas that get lake effect snow – please consider a different brand.  If you are reading this “after-the-fact” order a drive belt and impeller belt NOW in case you need it this winter.
  4. Menards: Menards sells a lot of Briggs & Stratton snow blowers but please be aware – Menards has a return policy for gas-powered equipment that is very restrictive compared to the other retailers. Be sure you understand it BEFORE you buy a gas powered snow blower from them. (It basically says that if you put gas in it – it’s not returnable. They will help you to find a repair center though)

By The Way – All Opinions are Mine.

Keeping up with snow blowers is almost a full-time job. The U.S. manufactures currently sell hundreds of different models made here in the U.S. alone. In addition, there are always another dozen or so foreign manufactures trying to wedge their way into your pocketbook. By the way – a quality $500 two-stage snow blower no longer exists. The cheapest 2-stage snow blower I can recommend is now $699.

I normally spend most of July and August talking to the different snow blower manufactures about the new models they have coming for the fall. Usually, in September the manufacturers are shipping the new models to the dealers and I spend the time I need to inspect the new models as local dealers put them out on the sales floor. Sometimes that also involves traveling to the manufactures assembly plants or corporate offices to look at, demo and talk to the snow product managers. In October, I travel to the GIE-EXPO in Louisville, KY. GIE-EXPO is the largest lawn and garden equipment dealer show. There I get a chance to demo machines plus talk to the engineers and company management about all the features, fixes and new rumors.

In addition, I keep a dozen or so of the current snow blowers at my home for testing and answering your questions. I use these snow blowers when it snows. You can find those videos on YouTube. When you go over there please subscribe to my YouTube channel

So Let’s Get Started!

If you have any questions please ask in the comment section below. Don’t forget to head over to my YouTube Channel when you are done here. Please subscribe to get the latest videos.

2018 Briggs & Stratton Single Stage

B&S makes two types of single stage snow blowers – three rubber paddle models and three snow shredder models. This first section covers the rubber paddle models.

Just to be clear, single-stage snow blowers only work well for areas of the country that get a little snow. They will clear 1-6 inches of “normal” snow but they don’t work well clearing heavy/wet snow. They also don’t throw snow very far and they don’t work well on the end-of-driveway snow. B&S singles stage snow blowers will clean down to the pavement so they are good for cleaning up driven on snow and sidewalks that have been walked on. They are good choices for patios and decks because they only weigh about 100 lbs and can be lifted up steps. If you live north of Interstate 70 I don’t recommend them as your primary machine. Consumer Reports has not rated the rubber paddle B&S models.

Note: The Model# 1696737 does not have electric start.

Model Name briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696737 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696715 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696727
B&S Model Item # 1696737 1696715 1696727
Sold at HomeDepot.com? Buy Here: Buy Here:  Buy Here: 
Also Sold at Amazon.com? Buy Here: Buy Here: Buy Here:
Amount/Type Of Snow 6″ Light 6″ Light 6″ Light
ENGINE BRAND B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 950 Snow Series
ENGINE POWER 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs)
STARTING SYSTEM Recoil 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil
STAGE TYPE Single Stage Single Stage Single Stage
CLEARING WIDTH 22 inch 22 inch 22 inch
HOUSING HEIGHT 12 inch 12 inch 12 inch
THROWING DISTANCE 3-30 ft 3-30 ft 3-30 ft
CHUTE TURNING RADIUS 200 200 200
DEFLECTOR CONTROL On Chute On Chute Remote
TIRE SIZE 8 in x 2 in 8 in x 2 in 8 in x 2 in
TIRE TYPE NA NA NA
STEERING NA NA NA
DRIVE TYPE Auger Propelled? Auger Propelled? Auger Propelled?
SPEEDS NA NA NA
LENGTH 47 in 47 in 47 in
WIDTH 23.1 in 23.1 in 23.1 in
HEIGHT 40 in 40 in 40 in
WEIGHT 93 lbs 93 lbs 93 lbs
GEARCASE NA NA NA
GEARCASE WARRANTY NA NA NA
IMPELLER PROFILE NA NA NA
IMPELLER DIAMETER NA NA NA
AUGER DIAMETER 10 in 10 in 10 in
AUGER TYPE Thermal Plastic Urethane Paddle Thermal Plastic Urethane Paddle Thermal Plastic Urethane Paddle
SKID SHOES NA NA NA
SCRAPER BAR NA NA NA
PRODUCT WARRANTY 3 yr Consumer, 90 days Com 3 yr Consumer, 90 days Com 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm
CHUTE ROTATION On Chute On Chute Remote
TONS PER HOUR NA NA NA
TYPICAL PRICE $399: $431  $513: 

2018 Briggs & Stratton Snow Shredder Single Stage

B&S Snow Shredder single stage snow blowers have are unique because they have metal paddles and metal teeth in the front rotor. These teeth are designed to rip up hard-packed and frozen snow. If you usually wait until the next day after a snow the snow shredder can help to clear that foot tall frozen snow plow drift at the end of your driveway.

Model Name briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696506 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696847 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696741
B&S Model Item # 1696506 1696847 1696741
Sold at HomeDepot.com? Buy Here: Buy Here:  Buy Here: 
Also Sold at Amazon.com? Buy Here: Buy Here: Buy Here:
Amount/Type Of Snow 9″ Normal 9″ Normal 9″ Normal
ENGINE BRAND B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 11.5 Snow Series
ENGINE POWER 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 250cc (11.5 ft/lbs)
STARTING SYSTEM 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil
STAGE TYPE Single Stage Single Stage Single Stage
CLEARING WIDTH 22 inch 22 inch 22 inch
HOUSING HEIGHT 12.5 inch 12.5 inch 12.5 inch
THROWING DISTANCE 3-30 ft 3-30 ft 3-30 ft
CHUTE TURNING RADIUS 200 200 200
DEFLECTOR CONTROL On Chute On Chute On Chute
TIRE SIZE 8 in x 2 in 8 in x 2 in 8 in x 2 in
TIRE TYPE NA NA NA
STEERING NA NA NA
DRIVE TYPE Auger Propelled Auger Propelled Auger Propelled
SPEEDS NA NA NA
LENGTH 46 in 46 in 46 in
WIDTH 23.5 in 23.5 in 23.5 in
HEIGHT 40 in 40 in 40 in
WEIGHT 89 lbs 89 lbs 98 lbs
GEARCASE NA NA NA
GEARCASE WARRANTY NA NA NA
IMPELLER PROFILE NA NA NA
IMPELLER DIAMETER NA NA NA
AUGER DIAMETER 10 in 10 in 10 in
AUGER TYPE SnowShredder™ Serrated Auger SnowShredder™ Serrated Auger SnowShredder™ Serrated Auger
SKID SHOES NA NA NA
SCRAPER BAR NA NA NA
PRODUCT WARRANTY 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm
CHUTE ROTATION On-the-Go On-the-Go Electric
TONS PER HOUR
TYPICAL PRICE $568: $610:  $665: 

2018 Briggs & Stratton Standard Two-Stage

Just two notes: 1. The Standard B&S are economy, solid axle snow blowers. These three snow blowers have decent traction for its size but without power steering, they can be hard to turn. I don’t recommend these snow blowers to someone with a bad back or is not used to moving heavy machinery. The 1696610 is a basic, economy model. The other two have remote chute and deflector controls.

2. The B&S 2-stage snow blowers are listed as light-medium duty. That means they work well for areas of the country that get up to 60 inches of snow but are not designed for areas that get more snow than that or get lots of heavy, wet snows.  If you live in the Northeast, Long Island or areas that get lake effect snow – please consider a different brand.  If you are reading this “after-the-fact” order a drive belt and impeller belt NOW in case you need it this winter.

Model Name briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696610 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696614 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696619
B&S Model Item # 1696610 1696614 1696619
Sold at HomeDepot.com? Buy Here: Buy Here:  Buy Here: 
Also Sold at Amazon.com? Buy Here: Buy Here: Buy Here:
Amount/Type Of Snow 10-12 inches/light-fluffy 10-12 inches/light-moderate 10-12 inches/light-moderate
ENGINE BRAND B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 1150 Snow Series
ENGINE POWER 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 250cc (11.5 ft/lbs)
STARTING SYSTEM 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil
STAGE TYPE Two Stage Two Stage Two Stage
CLEARING WIDTH 24 inch 24 inch 27 inch
HOUSING HEIGHT 20 inch 20 inch 20 inch
THROWING DISTANCE 3-35 ft 3-40 ft 3-40 ft
CHUTE TURNING RADIUS 200 200 200
DEFLECTOR CONTROL Manual Remote Remote
TIRE SIZE 13 in x 3 in 14 in x 5 in 14 in x 4 in
TIRE TYPE Snow Tread Snow Tread Snow Tread
STEERING Solid Axle Solid Axle Solid Axle
DRIVE TYPE Friction Disk Friction Disk Friction Disk
SPEEDS 6 forward 2 reverse 6 forward 2 reverse 6 forward 2 reverse
LENGTH 51.9 in 58 in 58 in
WIDTH 25.6 in 25.6 in 28.4 in
HEIGHT 45 in 44 in 44 in
WEIGHT 175 lbs 184 lbs 211 lbs
GEARCASE Top Loaded Aluminum Top Loaded Aluminum Top Loaded Aluminum
GEARCASE WARRANTY 3yr Cons, 90yr Comm 3yr Cons, 90yr Comm 3yr Cons, 90yr Comm
IMPELLER PROFILE 3-blade 3-blade 3-blade
IMPELLER DIAMETER 12 inch 12 inch 12 inch
AUGER DIAMETER 12 inch 12 inch 12 inch
AUGER TYPE Serrated Steel Open Serrated Steel Open Serrated Steel Open
SKID SHOES Steel Reversible Steel Reversible Steel Reversible
SCRAPER BAR Steel Adjustable Steel Adjustable Steel Adjustable
PRODUCT WARRANTY 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm
CHUTE ROTATION Old Style Wire & Crank In-Dash Crank In-Dash Crank
TONS PER HOUR
TYPICAL PRICE $665: $775: $880:

2018 Briggs & Stratton Elite Two-Stage

The B&S Elite 2-stage snow blowers are listed as medium duty. That means they work well for areas of the country that get up to 60 inches of snow but are not designed for areas that get more snow than that or get lots of heavy, wet snows.  If you live in the Northeast, Long Island or areas that get lake effect snow – please consider a different brand.

The biggest difference between the Standard and Elite is the Elite all have trigger style power steering, remote, chutes, and deflectors. They also have the open auger design so they will not clog as quickly as some of the other brands.

Model Name briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696807 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696815 briggs-stratton-gas-snow-blowers-1696828
B&S Model Item # 1696807 1696815 1696828
Sold at HomeDepot.com? Buy Here: Buy Here:  Buy Here: 
Also Sold at Amazon.com? Buy Here: Buy Here: Buy Here:
Amount/Type Of Snow Moderate-Heavy Moderate-Heavy Moderate-Heavy
ENGINE BRAND B&S 950 Snow Series B&S 1150 Snow Series B&S 1450 Snow Series
ENGINE POWER 208 cc (9.5 ft/lbs) 250cc (11.5 ft/lbs) 306cc (10 ft/lbs)
STARTING SYSTEM 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil 120V/Recoil
STAGE TYPE Two Stage Two Stage Two Stage
CLEARING WIDTH 24 inch 27 inch 30 inch
HOUSING HEIGHT 20 inch 20 inch 20 inch
THROWING DISTANCE 3-40 ft 3-40 ft 3-40 ft
CHUTE TURNING RADIUS 200 200 200
DEFLECTOR CONTROL Remote Remote Remote
TIRE SIZE 16 in x 5 in 16 in x 5 in 16 in x 5 in
TIRE TYPE Snow Tread Snow Tread Snow Tread
STEERING Trigger Power Trigger Power Trigger Power
DRIVE TYPE Friction Drive Friction Drive Friction Drive
SPEEDS 6 forward 2 reverse 6 forward 2 reverse 6 forward 2 reverse
LENGTH 58 in 58 in 58 in
WIDTH 26.4 in 29 in 32 in
HEIGHT 44 in 44 in 44 in
WEIGHT 213 lbs 236 lbs 241 lbs
GEARCASE Top Loaded Aluminum Top Loaded Aluminum Top Loaded Aluminum
GEARCASE WARRANTY
IMPELLER PROFILE Steel 3 blade Steel 3 blade Steel 3 blade
IMPELLER DIAMETER 12 inch 12 inch 12 inch
AUGER DIAMETER 12 inch 12 inch 12 inch
AUGER TYPE Serrated Steel Open Serrated Steel Open Serrated Steel Open
SKID SHOES Steel Reversible Steel Reversible Steel Reversible
SCRAPER BAR Steel Adjustable Steel Adjustable Steel Adjustable
PRODUCT WARRANTY 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm 3 yr Cons, 90 days Comm
CHUTE ROTATION Quick Turn Quick Turn Quick Turn
TONS PER HOUR
TYPICAL PRICE $699 $799 $1399

Thanks For Reading This Far!

Yes, You need a new gas can! Now is a good time to remind you that with your new snow blower you should buy a new gas can and fresh fuel. Check out this article:  Check out The Best Snow Shovel, Ice Scraper, and Gas Can To Compliment Your New Snow Blower

Still Looking? Start Here: The Twenty Best Snow Blowers – September 2018 – Which Snow Blower Is Best For You?

If you have any questions please ask in the comment section below. Don’t forget to head over to my YouTube Channel Please subscribe to get the latest videos.

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4 Comments

  1. Marty
    • Paul
  2. Donna Whalen
    • Paul

I'll be glad you help you find the best snow blower. Please tell me the city, state and how large an area you want to clear.

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