Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)/Input on New Snow Blower


Hi Eric,

I am in the market for a two stage snow blower and like to get your opinion on reliability and ease of repair.  The blower is for residential use 50 x 20 ft driveway and 100 ft of  walk The driveway is inclined about 10 deg halfway up.   Average annual snowfall here is  about 28  inches, but it varies widely and can be  wet and heavy.  So, I think this blower will get average use overall.

Two models I am considering are the Ariens Sno-tek  comp 24 # 920402 and Ariens comp 24  #920014. These two seem to be pretty solidly built for there price range. But, I will consider others also.

The major differences between the Sno-tek/ Ariens are:
LCT 208 snow engine /  Briggs 900 Polar force engine
aluminum gear case/ cast iron gear case ( both have steel gears)
plastic chute / steel chute
auger busing/ auger with replaceable bushings

One concern is the engine.  For the most part I have read positive reviews of the LCT engine. But I was surprised find, in my research at least, that the Briggs was not a clear winner between the two in terms. What do think about the engines and other components?


I prefer replaceable bushings and the metal chute if you plan to keep the blower for more than 5 years.  

As for LCT engines they are fairly new to the US market.   An LCT engine is a Chinese manufactured product similar to a Briggs & Stratton engine. Unfortunately many Briggs & Stratton engines are also made in China but at least they have an established design and a robust replacement parts network/distribution system.  B&S engines are considered a low line engine, but they usually considered better than an LCT.

I would go with the Briggs engine as you will not have any problems finding replacement parts.

As for any small power equipment you will get more life with proper service and use.  Frozen newspapers and rocks are really hard on snowblowers so try to avoid running over them.

Let me know if this helps.

Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)

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Eric A. Jones


Lawnmower Repair . Certified Master Service Technician from B&S. Have 23 years experience on B&S, Lawn Chief, Weed Eater, Echo, Peerless, Wheel Horse, Snapper, Atlas, MTD, McCulloch, Homelite and many other numerous brands. Specialize in electrical repair.


Born and raised in the midwest. Started tinkering with engines when I was about 14 on my Suzuki RM-80. I began lawn mower repair at a small hardware store. I knew absolutely nothing. I read lots of repair manuals and met an older fellow who taught me many lessons. I continued working on small engines through high school and paid my way through college working on mowers at the same hardware store. Decided to get away from the midwest and mower repair so I joined the Air Force. I repaired air traffic control electronic equipment and ended up in Hawaii where I got a part time job at Small Engine Clinic. I gained a lot of experience from the Small Engine Clinic and had a blast repairing small engines. I then took the Briggs and Stratton Master Service Technician test and earned my MST. I then traveled to Wisconsin where I attended the factory update training seminar and received formal training. Continued working on mowers part time as I completed 20 years of military. Retired from the military on a Friday and continued in the lawn and garden industry the next Monday.

MAS Aerospace Operations BA Mathematics AAS Electronic Communications AAS Electronic Technology

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