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Stihl Backpack Blower

Good evening all. I'm going to get a Stihl backpack blower this winter. I have a few large gardens and some commercial sites and they get plenty of leaves each year. Up to now I've used my hand held BG86 but there's no doubt it isnt up to these jobs. (Perfect for what it is designed for, clearing up after hedgecutting etc. and strimming, I must add). Also, although I've increased my cordless range this year, I don't think the blowers are quite up to this.  Do I go with the 430, 450, or shall I push the boat out and go for the 800? I notice the upper range models are 4mix, anyone find this a problem? Any feedback appreciated, I've actually never used a backpack before so looking forward to a new toy!

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  • PRO

    I was in the same position last year, some big gardens with lots of leaves and the Stihl pro hand held blower wasn’t up to it.  Went to screwfix and bought the Makita EB7660 as it was significantly cheaper and runs on 4 stroke.  Only use it once a week at the moment but will ramp up usage October time.  It’s very powerful and starts first time.  Worth considering.

    • Good call, I bought a makita from Screwfix and it,s been great.Any problems and they replace it with no eye rolling condescension.



  • I bought a stihl BR700 a couple of years back when I took over managing a large block of flats with countless horsechestnut trees which my BG86 really struggled with.  Really pleased with it...... loads of power and always starts on the second pull.  Don't worry about being a 4-mix engine............  it's really reliable and more fuel efficient than the 2 stroke..   Maintenance is negligible and easy to do yourself..............  valve clearances sound tricky but they're not and a 5 minute job... there's youtube videos showing how to do it. 

  • PRO

    We've had a BR600 for about 5 years. It's our only blower so gets daily use. Always maintained properly and never missed a beat. 

    The BR800 gets good reviews, I like the fact you can start it while still on your back.

  • I've a few br350's, the dealer recommended that model to me over the 4 mix models as they found they do tend to give problems (other say if you run the mix rich in them they are grand) can't fault out br350's at all after 2 years, personally I don't like spending big money on a blower as to me it's hard to see the money they will make you (unless used in leaf clearance jobs) though I definitely think they are an essential piece of kit

    i also had the Makita eb7660- it would be well worth considering I bought mine second hand and got 5 great years service out of it

  • PRO

    Anorhet vote for the BR600s. We had ours for many years with no problem.

    Apart from grunt, the best aspect is the muted noise due to 4Mix engine, something to consider ?

    BR800s could be coujd be possible replacements when we need one, but wonder how the new starter system will hold up.

    There easy to service and can get spares quickly etc. There are now other models / makes with similar power now, so much more choice, but clear you benefit from a big bad boy in your van  for hard to shift leaf jobs, car parks and lawns - good for de-dewing and clearing after scarifications as well.

  • PRO

    I have 5 Stihl BR 430 in daily use and find that it has enough power for me in domestic and small commercial sites.

    I've tried the bigger ones and they can fairly pull the arm off you, plus the additional weight and they take up more room in the van.

    Choice for me would be on whether you need that much power.

  • I relied on an SG86 for several years but it was just too small for large areas. I bought a Stihl BR600 in April. The power is awesome and makes the 86 feel like a toy. Having taken on a huge property this year, I couldnt have done without it. I wish I'd bought this backpack years ago. I've got several Stihl 4 mix engines on my other tools and I like them.  I've converted my SG86 to vac mode which works well as long as the material is nice and dry, otherwise it clogs up. Vac mode also is prone to wearing the plastic fan blade. 

  • PRO

    Yet another fan of the BR600 here too... very powerful. We bought a second hand one to try it out, and it's still (pardon the pun) going strong. We will probably be getting another to compliment it.

    • just ordered the new 650 c.f.m. Ego hand held blower from America, as not available anywhere in Europe. Slightly less output than the 677 c.f.m. of the BR600 for example but considerably cheaper running costs and no back pack suits me better. Cost me around £250 inc tax and shipping

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