While shopping for a leaf blower, you’ll undoubtedly come across models producing different windspeeds. The question is which windspeed do you need? In this guide, you’ll learn all about gas blower air speed, and what the best leaf blower is for each speed category.
What is Air Speed?
Air speed is simply the speed at which air comes shooting out of the leaf blower’s nozzle. Air speed is measured in miles per hour and can clock in at over 230 MPH. A more powerful motor or engine will produce greater air speeds to help blow leaves several more feet away from its original position.
What is CFM?
CFM, or cubic feet per minute, measures how much air comes out of the nozzle. Don’t mistake air speed and air volume since a leaf blower can shoot out a tremendous amount of air but at a low speed and not move fallen leaves a single inch.
Different Air Speed Categories
In general, there are six different air speed categories to choose from, ranging from between under 130 MPH up to more than 230 MPH. Here, we’ll quickly go over the advantages of each speed bracket and which leaf blower is best for that bracket.
Under 130 MPH
These are the lightest-duty leaf blower selection. These models are generally smaller, so they’re easy to carry and don’t take much space in your shed. They also produce the least amount of air volume, forcing you to get close to the fallen leaves.
130 to 149 MPH
These models come with slightly larger motors, though their overall weight remains pretty much the same. You can move leaves to and from greater distances with these badboys.
150 to 169 MPH
Though 150 to 169 MPH might sound fast, it’s actually only in the mid-range of what a leaf blower can deliver. These models are great for backyards with large trees scattered here and there.
170 to 199 MPH
Now, onto heavier-duty models. Though powerful, there are battery-powered 170-to-199-MPH models that exist. That said, we recommend sticking to a gas leaf blower if you need airspeeds of over 170MPH for professional landscaping duties.
200 to 229 MPH
Here, we have left cordless leaf blowers entirely and have switched onto either corded-electric or gas. Between the two, gas offers more flexibility and portability, but corded models can run indefinitely with a reliable extension cord. They can also come with a vacuum function for mulching and easier disposal.
More than 230 MPH
Still, we have either corded or gas to choose from. You might consider getting one of these if you have tremendously large front and backyards, meaning that an extension cable is out of the question. For this reason, we recommend a gas-powered leaf blower to handle the toughest landscaping jobs imaginable.
Which Gas Blower Speed Should I Get?
There’s no one speed that will work for every scenario imaginable. That said, it’s generally safer to go bigger than smaller, though more than 230 MPH is definite overkill if you don’t plan on doing landscaping as more than just a hobby.
However, you can combine the best of multiple worlds by finding a leaf blower model that has a variable speed dial or different speed settings. This feature not only lets you choose how much air and airspeed the tool delivers but also use only as much fuel as necessary.
Our Recommended Gas-Powered Leaf Blowers
Last update on 2021-01-18 / Most affiliate links and/or Images from Amazon Product Advertising API