Finally got some snow so I was able to try out my new Snowcaster heavy duty pusher.
My reason for purchase is I take care of my In-laws driveway and sidewalk and they live about 2 miles away. It's a pain to load up the big snow blower just to go clear 2-4" of snow however shoveling is a pain as well.
At 58 years old I'm also not getting any younger so if I can find a less strenuous way to get a task done I'm all for that.
So I was looking for a solution other than shoveling or getting a smaller more portable snow blower when my search lead me to the Snowcaster pusher. I went with the "Heavy Duty" model as I figured bigger is better especially for only $20 more.
The snow conditions during my first use were about 3" of very heavy wet snow. I cleared 3 driveways all about 18' X 40' along with one sidewalk run of about 200'.
I'll base this review on the 3rd driveway and 200' sidewalk run as by that time I kind of had this unit figured out. Not to say it's that difficult to figure out but as with most things the more you use it the better you get with it.
If you are one that likes a clean clear outer edge to the sides of your driveway or sidewalk you're going to need to use a shovel after you've cleared most of the snow with the pusher. The pusher simply "pushes" the snow up to the edge leaving the outer perimeter somewhat undefined.
I can see how this could bother those who are kind of "anal" with their driveway and side edging. On the driveway I simple went back with the shovel and cleaned up the edge. As for the sidewalk, I left about a 2'-3' clear path with an undefined edge and left it at that.
I found that with 3" of wet snow at about a 15' run the snow piled up too much to keep pushing. So I simply cleared a path down the center of the 18' wide driveway and pushed from center side to side which worked very well as that lessened the push distance to about a 7.5' run.
Once I cleared the driveway I took my shovel, cleared off the porch steps and cleaned up the driveway edge. For the entire 18' X 40' run at 3" of heavy wet snow it took me less than 10 minutes to clear it all. I would estimate with a shovel it would have taken me at least 20-30 minutes to clear the same area and required a lot more effort on my back and shoulders/arms.
As for the sidewalk; after about 15' I pushed the snow to the side and then started another 15' clean run. I then ran the pusher back down the sidewalk and was able to clear a complete path in one pass that left a 2-3' wide clear path.
So in conclusion; the Snowcaster appears to work as it's advertised.
The unit seems a little "lightweight", but by design it doesn't take a lot of abuse so construction is likely fine. Time will only tell just how durable it is.
I think about 3" of wet snow is it's limit, anymore than that you're likely going to have to breakout the shovel or snow blower. I think for a dry powder snow this unit would easily clear 6" or more snow due to lack of the weight of the snow..
Since the unit pushes the snow there is little strain on your back but your shoulders/arms do get a light workout but certainly not anywhere near the back strain or shoulder/arm workout you get when shoveling.
Because it pushes the snow vs. shoveling, it does leave an undefined edge but that is easily addressed by using a shovel to simple clean up the edge.
Based on after clearing three 18' X 40' driveways and 200'+ of sidewalk with about 3" of heavy wet snow, I would recommend the Snowcaster heavy duty pusher. To me this is a great tool to add to your other snow removal equipment.