What's this? Based mainly on removal speed, distance, surface cleaning, controls, and handling.
$1,099.00 - $1,235.25
Summary:This 28-inch, two-stage Ariens has an automotive-style steering system that allow the inner wheel to turn more slowly than the outer one in a turn. Electric start and a headlight are part of the package.
The Ariens AX254 921030 is part of the snow blower
test program at Consumer Reports. In our lab tests, snow blower
models like the AX254 921030 are rated on multiple criteria, such as those listed below.
The snow blower's clearing width, or swath, in inches.
How quickly models could remove snow without laboring; We push single-stage machines as quickly as possible before the machine labors.
Plow pile removal:
How quickly the snow thrower can remove a simulated pile of snow left by a municipal plow at the end of a driveway.
About This Brand
Ariens' snow blowers are available at outdoor power equipment dealers and Home Depot. It's a leading marketer whose model line consists of single- and two-stage gas models with available electric start and snow clearing widths of 22 to 26 inches.
Engine size The engine displacement, measured in cubic centimeters for gasoline powered engines. Most manufacturers no longer give a horsepower rating, so engine displacement is now the only universal way to compare relative engine size. Electric motors are stated in amps.
Electric start Most models offer a plug-in starting device that saves you the hassle of pull-starting the engine, but you need to be near an outlet.
Multiple speeds For two-stage models, most come with multiple forward speeds and two reverse speeds. The ability to vary ground speed according to snow conditions gets the job done faster. Some of the least expensive two-stage models have only one forward speed.
Single hand controls Most two-stage models have individual lever controls on each side of the handlebar: one engaging the wheel traction, and the other for engaging the auger/impeller. This feature lets you hold down both control levers with one hand, leaving the other hand free to adjust the chute controls.
Single hand controls
Freewheel steering For two-stage models, this feature--which usually consists of triggers under each handlebar--disengages either or both the left and right drive wheels for easy, sharp turning.
Single lever chute adjustment Only on two-stage models, a single lever or "joystick" on the control panel allows for quick changes to the horizontal discharge direction (the alternative is a hand crank) and to the vertical discharge height (the alternative is leaving the operator position and adjusting manually), all with a single lever.
Single lever chute adjustment
Headlight Eases snow throwing at night or in low-light situations.
Heated handgrips While they're inessential and don't replace a good pair of gloves, they're handy for keeping up blood circulation in your hands.
Warranty (yrs.) Manufacturer's stated warranty in years of coverage. In most cases it applies only to consumer use and not commercial use.
Bought this to replace a CubCadet with single level chute control, good idea, but not user friendly. very durable machine, sturdy/reinforced impeller system, good speed selections, solid construction with medium grade sheet-metal and metal parts... includes cute shovel and spare shear pins.... only frustration is that to adjust chute direction angle with right hand you release handlebar clamp and drive unit stops... should allow drive/auger lock with auger handle so need to release both handles for unit to stop... as does Craftswoman and other such units... or move drive control to other side...
How long have you owned it:
More than six months
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
By Jim going crooked in MA
from Danvers, MA
Won't go in a straight line
Won't Go In A Straight Li
I purchased this snowblower for the auto-turn feature, what a mistake. I can't get the machine to go straight I have to fight it all the way to keep a straight line. I had a 2012 Craftsman snowblower that was highly recommended by Consumer Reports. That snowblower worked great but had locked rear wheels that made it somewhat difficult to turn. But it went perfectly straight when you wanted it to. So since I'm getting older I figured the auto-turn feature would be just what I needed. Reading the manual I initially set the scraper bar height at 1/8 on a flat surface. When I used the snowblower on the first small snowstorm I noticed the continual pulling either to the left or right, I had to fight it all the way to keep it straight. This was on a totally flat asphalt driveway, an ideal surface with light snow. After that experience I again referred to the manual and set the height to 3/8 hoping that might cure the pulling. The next storm was six inches of light snow and the machine still continued to pull. Plus it left the the 3/8 inch of snow behind that I had to shovel. I did a web search and found that the many people that had this machine with the auto-turn feature had trouble keeping it straight. Ariens does have a video that addresses the problem by making sure that the body of the machine is correctly aligned to the snow throwing section. I did that alignment but still have the pulling. I have not seen any information that would somehow adjust the internal workings of the machine to make the auto-turn less sensitive. If I could disable this feature I would. The scraper bar of my old Craftsman was right down to the pavement and gave me a spotless driveway. The lowest recommended for this machine is 1/8 inch, so even if that auto-turn worked you still would have some cleanup to do. I had a 15 year old Ariens in the past and the wheels pivoted and it went straight when required. I think a lot of the blame rests with Consumer Reports for recommending this machine with this auto-turn flaw. Your testing is obviously flawed and incomplete. I will be calling Ariens to find out what can be done to correct this problem. And if not satisfied I will try to return the machine.
How long have you owned it:
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
from Shepherdstown WV
Headlight in a fixed position. Blocks the beam on chute.
Clears to the Pavement
First use was on Saturday after the big storm. Somewhat hard to turn around.