Last updated on November 23rd, 2022
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The leaf blower comes in various sizes whether the model is petrol, corded or cordless. Handheld leaf blowers are cute but today we are looking at the bigger backpack leaf blowers. These are the kind of machines you need if there is a large amount of work to be done because they offer more power and running time before needing to refuel or recharge.
The marketplace is a dynamic environment where you can get anything you want depending on the budget you are working with. After scouring through many models, and to begin with we had over 20 of them to look at, we shortlisted six backpack leaf blowers that are not only powerful, many are also more affordable and we also show you some of the more premium top of the range models. Whether you are looking for the best cordless backpack leaf blower or the best backpack leaf blowers for professionals, we have your best interest at heart.
You are welcome to go through this review at your own pace and when you are done we hope you would have discovered which model suits you best.
First, let us look at our best pick the Makita EB7660TH Backpack Blower which features a fuel-efficient 4-stroke engine. This engine is optimised to produce a maximum air volume of 20 m3/min and really does shift debris with ease. An expensive model but a worthwhile investment for those looking for a premium yet quiet machine.
Our final top performer is this McCulloch GB 355 BP Backpack Leaf Blower which offers a maximum airspeed of 355km/h. This model provides strong performance for such a decently-priced product and is a great option for domestic use.
BEST VALUE PICK
Top 5 Best Backpack Leaf Blowers
1. Makita EB7660TH 4 Stroke Backpack Blower
The Makita EB7660TH 4 Stroke Backpack Blower is powerful and it is comfortable to use. We think it is one of the best models currently available, however, it’s not really budget-friendly. If power, reliability and quality are what you are looking for, this leaf blower is well worth considering.
The large blower is powered by a 75.6cc 4-stroke engine that is fuel-efficient producing high air volume. With 4 HP at your disposal, you can clear out debris from different surfaces and dislodge wet leaves from lawns, paths and patios.
This model requires unleaded petrol to perform optimally which reduces the chances of any engine damage. In comparison to the 2 stroke models where you need to mix the correct ratio of petrol and oil, which many have been known to get wrong, leading to engine damage. This also means it is easier to refuel because you just need a can of unleaded petrol with you.
Achieving air speeds of up to 92m/s with a maximum air volume of 20 m3/min, this model also features automatic engine decompression. This allows the user to start the model easily, even when it is cold. Anyone who has experience in starting engines on a cold winter’s morning will know the feeling of struggling to get an engine started.
Another unique feature this model has to help on a cold winter’s day is the anti-icing feature that provides warm air. This warm air prevents the cold from affecting the carburettor because of ice build-up. To activate the anti-icing feature just turn the dial provided and the process will take over from there. Overall, a great feature.
User comfortability is very important, especially if you’re using a leaf blower professionally for longer periods of time. This leaf blower weighs about 10kgs which is not light by any means, but it’s not what we would call heavy either, especially for a backpack model. The presence of comfortable padded back straps helps the user balance out the weight of the blower, the straps are also easy to adjust too. There are also damper springs installed between the engine and harness to reduce the vibrations felt by the user. This, in turn, allows the user to work feeling less stressed and fatigued, and greatly improves comfort.
Another section of the blower that benefits from the dampers are the nozzles. All the vibration from the engine will not affect how the user handle’s the nozzle. The user can grip the blower comfortably and manoeuvre without experiencing discomfort. All these may seem insignificant to some but they are all features that are essential to a professional machine.
It also features a larger 1.9 litre fuel tank for longer running times and also comes supplied with a telescopic nozzle and pipe. The telescopic feature facilitates easy reach of high surfaces or tight corners. The nozzles supplied include a flat and a round nozzle. You can easily interchange the nozzles depending on the area that you want to clean. When you are done using the blower you can clean off any dust and store it for the next use.
- Features a powerful 4-stroke engine to run efficiently and surprisingly quiet.
- Supplies enough power to support an air volume of 20 m3/min and airspeeds of 92m/s for blowing wet leaves and other debris.
- Comes with comfortable padded straps that are easy to adjust.
- Provides an anti-icing and anti-static feature.
- Features damper springs to reduce vibrations felt.
- Offers a comfortable grip for easy manoeuvrability.
- It has a telescopic pipe and nozzle.
- Comes with an automatic decompression system that allows the engine to be started easily.
- The product complies with exhaust emissions regulations thus it is safe to use.
- 3 years warranty for full peace of mind when you register online within 30 days of purchase.
- A little expensive
The Makita EB7660TH 4 Stroke Backpack Blower is powered by a reliable and powerful engine therefore, you are guaranteed a good performance. This is why we rated it as the best backpack leaf blower because we think it provides a good combination of power, reliability and cost. It is also quite comfortable to use because of the padded straps and low vibration features. You can work for hours and experience less fatigue compared to blowers that don’t feature a quality damper system. Plus the 4-stroke engine is much quieter than most other 2-stroke models.
We would recommend this model to those who need a reliable blower that offers excellent value for money while not costing the earth. With the price, you are charged for this model you are guaranteed durability and good performance, while it’s not what you might consider budget-friendly it’s also not overpriced either. It is also not as noisy as you might expect so you might not even need to use ear protectors, although we would still consider it.
Makita is known for producing quality products and this model proves why they are so reputable. Try it and tell us what you think, we think you won’t be disappointed.
2. McCulloch GB 355 BP Backpack Leaf Blower: Leaf Blower/Garden Vacuum
BEST VALUE PICK
Another fantastic petrol blower is the McCulloch GB 355 BP Backpack Leaf Blower. This leaf blower is designed to suit both professional and domestic use, providing not only durability but optimal performance. However, we would recommend this more for domestic use and lighter or occasional professional use. The model is fitted with a powerful 46cc 2-stroke engine with a 2.2-litre capacity tank. The engine’s performance is good and with a large capacity tank, one can get a large amount of work done. However, it may eat through fuel faster than some other more efficient models may. This is not an issue for occasional or home use but for professional or heavy use you could find yourself refuelling more frequently.
It has a maximum airspeed of 355km/h which can easily move wet leaves or grass clippings from the lawn. This airspeed is adjustable to suit what you are working on. You can use the lower speed to dislodge loose dust, grass clippings or dry leaves from surfaces and the high speed to dislodge more stubborn debris, for example, wet leaves and soil. The adjustable speed is controlled by the pressure you apply on the trigger while the cruise control is used to lock in the airspeed. This is a good feature to take the strain from your fingers during prolonged use.
To facilitate the right working conditions, this leaf blower is equipped with a padded back harness. The harness distributes the blower’s 9.1kg weight evenly across your shoulders and back. This, in turn, reduces the amount of stress applied to those muscles, therefore, reducing fatigue over time. Overall, most will find it very comfortable to wear.
The adjustable trigger position allows you to find a comfortable grip depending on the length of your arm. Overall, it is a comfortable machine to work with.
It is important to note that this model is only a blower and that it does not include a vacuuming feature. If you are looking for a model that consists of the vacuum feature then we recommend checking out our best leaf blower vacuum article.
- Features a powerful 2-stroke engine that performs optimally.
- Possesses a 2.2 litre capacity fuel tank for a longer running time.
- Comes with an adjustable trigger for easier control.
- Provides a padded harness to facilitate comfort.
- Features variable speed with a maximum air velocity of 355km/h.
- Offers good value for money.
- Comes with cruise control to lock in the working speed.
- It has low-vibration features which lowers the fatigue experienced by the user.
- 12 months warranty for full peace of mind.
- Pipes and seals perish quickly if used professionally and they may need replacing sooner than you might expect. Not a problem for home use.
The McCulloch GB 355 BP Backpack Leaf Blower comes with a reliable two-stroke engine that performs fairly well. The engine could be more fuel-efficient, but then again it is a 2-stroke engine therefore, some flaws are expected. This model is powerful enough to move both light and heavy debris so it is perfect for both domestic and lighter or occasional professional use. If you’re looking for a model for professional use, we recommend investing a little more and getting something a little better that is designed for professional use. This model is certainly more for domestic use.
We love the fact that it is comfortable to use and it possesses various adjustable features to give the user more control. The leaf blower is ideal for those looking for a considerably affordable petrol blower with a good capacity fuel tank. You may have to try a few times before the engine starts but once you get going you will experience the power of the blower. Overall, it’s a great model that is half the price of our best pick (at the time of this comparison) but still may be better than some of the cheaper non-branded alternatives you see for sale online.
3. Stiga SBP375 Petrol Backpack Leaf Blower
The Stiga SBP375 Petrol Backpack Leaf Blower is an 11.6kg blower that you can use for different purposes around your property. For professional use, it is a slightly more affordable alternative than our best pick by Makita.
This model is powered by a 2-stroke 75.6cc engine to produce about 3.1kW of power output. You will find that it is easy to start thanks to the recoil system in place. Even when the temperature drops, the engine will be able to start after a few pulls.
It is a reliable blower producing wind speeds of up to 100m/s which is slightly better than our best pick, although probably not noticeable in real use. The air volume of 25 m³/min, again, is slightly more than our best pick, but overall the performance you actually see is probably going to be the same. This is enough power to clear debris from different surfaces, from wet leaves to soil and even snow.
The user can control the direction of the air being blown using the joystick provided. The joystick is adjustable to provide comfortability according to the user’s preference. It also features a throttle lock to keep the speed constant and avoid pressing the trigger all the way through your clearing jobs.
This leaf blower is not lightweight, so without a proper harness, the user is bound to get tired quickly. That is why Stigma made sure to include a comfortable harness that would help balance out the weight of the machine. You can rest easy knowing that the blower has a 2-year domestic warranty that will take care of any issues that arise. This is reduced to 1 year for professional use.
- Provides 3.1kW power output to clear out different kinds of debris.
- Features a high performance 2-stroke 76.5cc engine.
- Offers wind speeds of 100m/s and a wind volume of 25 m³/min.
- The joystick is adjustable to fit the user’s preference.
- Comes with a throttle lock to provide stable wind speeds.
- Features a comfortable harness for easier manoeuvrability.
- Offers a 2.1litre capacity tank to facilitate a longer running time.
- Backed by a 2-year domestic warranty and 1-year professional warranty for business use.
- Can be quite heavy over time.
The Stiga SBP375 Petrol BackPack Leaf Blower cost slightly less than our best pick at the time of this comparison and is very similar in terms of performance. This model is also slightly heavier than our best pick but this difference may not be too noticeable. The good thing is that the harness does a good job of distributing the weight of the machine, you can work for a long time but take breaks in between.
The product doesn’t provide variable air speeds but the output is powerful enough to work with heavy debris. This model is perfect for domestic purposes because it comes with a 2-year domestic warranty. It is comfortable to use because the joystick is adjustable therefore you can manoeuvre through tight areas. If you are looking for a premium single-speed blower then this model would suit you well.
4. BU-KO 76CC Petrol Backpack Leaf Blower
Get the job done quickly by using the BU-KO 76CC Petrol Backpack Leaf Blower. This affordable blower is powered by a 2-stroke 76cc engine that is easy to start. The leaf blower produces a maximum energy output of 4.3HP to clear dust, leaves and other forms of debris from surfaces. This mode is a great entry level model with a great starting price, making it one of the best budget-friendly models.
Operating between speeds of 3000rpm and 8000rpm, this blower’s airspeed forms a whirlwind that helps collect leaves quickly. The 3000rpm is the normal speed when the blower is idle and the 8000rpm is the highest setting available. You can easily interchange between speeds by adjusting the throttle. It is also good to note that the joystick is adjustable to provide a comfortable fit for the user’s arm.
This model weighs 6.5kgs which is considerably lighter than the other petrol blowers featured here. Its lightweight feature permits you to work without experiencing stress on a muscular level. The weight is distributed across the shoulders and the back making it easy to manoeuvre. The wide straps of the harness are padded to prevent the straps from digging into your shoulders.
In the spirit of making the user comfortable as they work, this blower is also fitted with low vibration features. These features absorb the excess vibrations therefore, you can work without being exhausted. This model is supplied with a flat nozzle that makes it easier to clean in-between tight spaces. You will also find a free tool kit and other accessories like protective gloves and eyewear.
Overall this model provides excellent value for money. It is accompanied by a 12-month warranty which goes far in assuring the user of its reliability.
- Powered by a strong 2-stroke 76cc engine.
- Good entry-level model budget model.
- Comes with variable speed for better control.
- It is lightweight hence easy manoeuvrability is achievable.
- Features an adjustable joystick for user comfort.
- Comes with accessories like safety glasses and gloves.
- Offers a flat nozzle to clean out heavy debris.
- It is low noise and low vibration leaf blower.
- Features a wide strap padded harness for mobility purposes.
- Covered by a 12-month warranty for peace of mind.
- Some parts have flimsy plastic that may be prone to damage over time.
The BU-KO 76CC Petrol Backpack Leaf Blower is designed to provide power and comfortability. This leaf blower offers optimal performance that could rival some of the well-known brand name models. The 2-stroke engine model is lightweight making it appropriate for less demanding jobs around your property. With a decent fuel capacity tank, this model has a decent running time before requiring a refill.
Price-wise, this leaf blower is affordable and provides good value for money because of the additional accessories provided. While the leaf blower is made of quality materials, some of the sections have thin plastic that are susceptible to damage, especially if dropped, so it is better suited for personal use and isn’t robust enough for professional use. You should be careful with this blower not to get unwarranted damage.
This model is a good choice for those who require a leaf blower on a manageable budget. One of the better options from the large range of budget-friendly models available online.
5. Echo PB-580 Backpack Leaf Blower
The last model in the review is the Echo PB-580 Backpack Leaf Blower which is perfect for professional use. It is also the most expensive petrol model we have looked at in this review.
This model is powered by a very reliable 2-stroke 58.2cc engine that produces a maximum power output of 2.05kW. Whether you are looking to clean a large yard, clear paths, patios or paths of wet leaves or remove loose dust from several surfaces, this model is equipped to handle these activities with ease and is a real workhorse. The engine comes with a filter to prevent particles from damaging the engine, it also features a tool-less air filter access for easy cleaning. This model, when running optimally, supports air speeds of up to 96.4m/s and an air volume of 882m3/h.
Because of environmental concerns, the leaf blower is designed to produce fewer emissions and it operates more quietly in terms of petrol engines but being 2 stroke it’s probably still slightly louder than the Makita alternative. The reason behind the engine operating more quietly is the insulator plate and double-engine cover installed. It also possesses an anti-vibration feature that permits the user to work comfortably, just like that of the Makita model.
This leaf blower will work during the cold season because it has an anti-icing feature that prevents the carburettor from getting affected by the cold. This, in turn, allows the engine to be started with fewer pulls. The model is fuel efficient running at 1.03 litres/h on maximum power, with a fuel tank capacity of 1.8 litres, you get a decent running time to complete your work.
To ensure that the user remains comfortable, this model comes with a padded back harness that is ventilated. During hot days, air ventilation keeps the user’s back cool preventing excessive sweating, which those of you that have used backpack tools before will probably know the feeling.
The 10.3kg leaf blower is supplied with a round straight nozzle and a round bent nozzle for use. You are assured that the leaf blower is of genuine quality because it comes with a 5-year domestic warranty and a 1-year commercial warranty.
- Features a strong 2-stroke engine with a power output of 2.05kW.
- Comes with anti-vibration features to lower muscle fatigue.
- Operates more quietly and produces fewer emissions.
- Possesses an anti-icing feature to facilitate an easy start during cold days.
- Offers air speeds of up to 96.4m/s and an air volume of 882m3/h.
- It provides a ventilated back harness for user comfortability.
- Comes with a filter to protect the engine from damage.
- Features the Posi-lo Pipe System for secure pipe connections.
- Provides a rubberised joystick that provides a good grip.
- Accompanied by a 5-year domestic warranty and a 1-year commercial warranty.
- It is a bit heavy and expensive but really is a professional tool that is designed to last.
The Echo PB-580 Backpack Leaf Blower offers more power to work with compared to our best pick and it costs more. We can say that this model is well-built because there are no flimsy parts. The engine runs optimally and it is easy to start, offering a good user experience. This leaf blower is comfortable to use because the harness is well ventilated and the straps are padded to help distribute the weight.
Those who need a strong powered backpack leaf blower with a rubberised comfortable grip would love this one. The premium-priced model is not only durable but it gets the work done. It may be a bit heavy, but in the end, it is among the best models the market has to offer. It is also awesome that the leaf blower observes environmental regulations to reduce both air and noise pollution. If you are looking for a professional model, one that will last for many years and be as reliable as you, this is well worth considering.
Leaf blowers are not products that are bought regularly therefore if you get a good one, it should last you for many years, even for heavy professional use. Buying a product that offers good value for money should be a goal for everyone. Even the best backpack leaf blowers for professionals should be scrutinised to see if the quality would keep up with daily use.
In this section, we cover the basics that you need to understand before making your purchase. Because the models represented are mostly petrol-based with the exception of one cordless, that is what we will focus on.
Petrol vs cordless
Petrol leaf blowers have been with us for some time now and they are not going anywhere anytime soon. These types of blowers usually produce more power to work with because they use powerful engines. Petrol models are perfect for handling heavy-duty work because they are powerful and their reach is not limited. You can work in remote locations where there is no electricity with ease and you just need a spare can of fuel.
Even though good petrol models are expensive, finding a powerful and reliable cordless leaf blower will cost you more. Cordless leaf blowers also provide easy reach because they are not tied down by cords. Finding a model that offers a decent running time is possible but you may need several batteries if you want to work continuously without stopping to recharge. The good thing about cordless models is that they are considerably lighter, require much less maintenance and are less noisy compared to the petrol models.
Think about how much work is to be done and select a model (whether cordless or petrol) that will get the job done. Remember to consider the maximum airspeed and air volume to see if there is enough power to dislodge the debris around your property.
2-stroke or 4-stroke engine
There are always debates going on as to which engine function is betters between the 2-stroke and 4-stroke engines. The truth is that both engine types have their advantages and disadvantages.
The 2-stroke engines are generally lighter and cost less to manufacture but they produce higher emissions than the 4-stroke engines. 2-stroke engines also require regular maintenance compared to their 4-stroke engine counterparts and fueling is more awkward because you need to mix fuel and oil together at the correct ratio.
4-stroke engines may cost more to produce but they require less maintenance over time. Compared to 2-stroke engines, 4-stroke engines produce less torque and they can be considered more environmentally friendly. This is because 4-stroke engines are more fuel-efficient, hence producing fewer emissions. They are also easier to fuel because they just take regular unleaded fuel.
Regardless of whether you choose a 2-stroke or 4-stroke engine, the quality of the engine needs to be able to support optimal airspeeds. I would personally go with a 4-stroke model over a 2 stroke model but there are obviously lots of other considerations to take into account to.
There are leaf blowers that feature a constant speed and those that feature variable speeds. Getting a model with a constant speed is perfect if you bought the blower to handle only one cleaning activity. If there are several cleaning activities in tow then you might want to select a model with variable speed. Variable speed allows the user to handle light and heavy-handed activities with ease.
Because many backpack leaf blowers are heavy, a padded harness is essential. You want to choose a model whose harness has been padded correctly to avoid unwanted exhaustion. Cheap padding usually deflates over time, putting pressure on your back and shoulder muscles. Also, consider blowers that have properly ventilated harnesses to prevent you from sweating too much when working on hot sunny days.
While finding the right harness is important, you also want to find a leaf blower with anti-vibration features. In many cases, damper springs are installed to absorb the vibration, therefore, allowing the user to work comfortably. Models that lack anti-vibration features will place unnecessary stress on the muscles.
Anti-icing features ensure that the engine is not affected when the temperature drops. Anti-icing features permit hot air to flow to the carburettor to facilitate an easy start and stop it from freezing during use. Even in the dead of winter, you will use fewer pulls to start the engine compared to a petrol blower that lacks this feature.
When handling the joystick anti-static features are important because they reduce the chances of electrical discharge. This is important in preventing any electrical accidents while you are using the blower.
Adjustable features make it easy for the user to work comfortably. For example, an adjustable joystick permits the user to manoeuvre easily according to the length of their arms. Whether you have short or long arms, you should be able to work without strain.
Another adjustable feature in these leaf blowers is the adjustable harness. Everyone likes to wear their backpack at a certain level. Some are comfortable with the blower sitting high up on their back while some prefer it to sit lower. It all boils down to your preference really.
Blowers can also be used for vacuuming if the model features a reverse airflow model and a collector bag. Not all models have this feature so enquire before purchasing. Most backpack models don’t have this feature, and they certainly aren’t models that we would recommend.
Leaf blowers also come with accessories to make life easier. Apart from the standard nozzles, some manufacturers provide assembly keys, protective gear and engine oil among other things. A good example of such a model is the BU-KO 76CC Petrol Backpack Leaf Blower. Even if the price of the blower is high, added accessories always offer good value for money.
Blowers are usually loud but some operate more quietly than others. Petrol blowers tend to be louder than their cordless counterparts. Always check the noise level of the machine by confirming the decibel (dB) level. The higher the number on the decibel rating, the louder the machine is. This is especially important if you live or work in noise-sensitive environments.
A warranty acts like an insurance policy in case something is wrong with the product. Always confirm if a product has a warranty so that you don’t miss out. You can dismiss the warranty only to find fault with the product months down the line. Most good models include a 2-5 year warranty for domestic use and usually a 12-month warranty for professional use.
We have come to the end of the review. In the amount of time that you have spent reading this review, we hope you have picked the important points that you will carry with you. Buying the best backpack leaf blower is not a complicated process like buying a house. We have all the confidence that you will select wisely.
A recap of our best leaf blowers include the Makita EB7660TH 4 Stroke Backpack Blower which features a durable 4-stroke engine that supports airspeeds of up to 92m/s. This is a good choice for both domestic and professional use and probably the best choice for most people. This brand is also one of the most respected.
Those in search of a model that offers the best value for money can purchase the McCulloch GB 355 BP Backpack Leaf Blower because it is affordable, reliable, and a good tool overall.
They say nothing good comes easy but in the case of backpack leaf blowers, the process could not be simpler.
Last update on 2023-11-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API