Ariens ST28DLE Review

Ariens ST28DLE

11110.5
(Rated: 4.4 / 5) Review by Frank Lowery
Noise1110.50
Ease of Assembly11111
Maneuverability11110
Balance And Handling11111
Result Quality11110.5

There are a lot of snow blowers out there, and it can be hard to narrow down the selection to find one that is just right for your needs. But if you live in an area that gets a lot of snow fall over the winter, and you are routinely clearing more than eight or ten inches – or if you can expect more than a couple severe winter storms that drop more than a foot of snow – you want a powerful two-stage snow bower that can get the job done.

This is true whether you live in a rural area and don’t have a paved driveway, or if you live in an urban area. If you can expect a lot of snow over the winter, you need a solid, powerful snow blower with a high intake that you can count on. The Ariens ST28DLE is just such a snow blower.

Review Summary

review summaryThe Ariens ST28DLE is the kind of powerful snow blower with a massive clearance width and high snow cut depth that you can rely on to clear a high volume of snow from a large area quickly and efficiently. The extra wide clearance on the Ariens ST28DLE ensures you can finish clearing even the biggest driveways in fewer passes and less time. And at nearly two feet high, the snow cut depth is big enough to deal with the most severe snow storms.

The Ariens ST28DLE also comes with durable drift cutters that can knock down deep snow to be cleared by the auger. The auger is made out of welded steel, which means it can cut through densely packed, icy snow with ease. And this is just one example of the tough parts that the Ariens ST28DLE is made with. It is an extremely tough snow blower that will last for many years.

Specifications

review specificationsThe Ariens ST28DLE is a gas powered two-stage snow blower that weighs 268 pounds and has dimensions of 37 x 50.9 x 32 inches. It has a 420 cubic centimeter, four cycle Briggs & Stratton engine with OHV design. The engine drives both the auger and the snow blower’s transmission.

Type Two-Stage
Dimensions 37 x 50.9 x 32 inches
Start Button push
Engine Manufacturer Briggs & Stratton
Engine 420 cc – OHV
2-cycle / 4-cycle 4-cycle
Drive Self-propelled
Speed Control 6 forward / 2 reverse
Clearing Width 28 inches
Snow Cut Depth 23.5 inches
Throw Distance Up to 40 feet
Handle Ergonomic
Light n/a
Chute Control Manual 200°
Wheels 16-Inch x 5-inch
Weight 268 pounds
Warranty 2 years

The Ariens ST28DLE has a 28 inch clearing width and a snow cut depth of nearly two feet. It can throw snow up to 40 feet away through its snow chute. The snow chute rotates 200 degrees manually. The Ariens ST28DLE has big, deeply treaded wheels for more traction on icy surfaces. It comes with a two year warranty.

Description

review descriptionAs soon as you lay eyes on the Ariens ST28DLE, you can see that this is a snow blower that has the capacity to clear a lot of snow very quickly. It’s immediately apparent that this is a big, powerful snow blower. Weighing more than 250 pounds and having a fairly large footprint, the Ariens ST28DLE is built to deliver high performance. It’s that big in part because it supports one of the widest clearances and highest snow cut depths you can find on a walk-behind snow blower: at close to two feet high, the Ariens ST28DLE has an intake that can deal with the deepest blizzards easily.

The snow blower has so much power because it is supported by a 4-cycle Briggs & Stratton engine. At 420 cc, the engine has the kind of displacement that does not mess around. And Briggs & Stratton is one of the top small engine manufacturers in the world, so you know that you are getting real quality with the Ariens ST28DLE. This is an engine that will provide reliable power to drive the entire snow blower for many years to come – and it will not need as much maintenance as other models to keep it running smoothly.

The Ariens ST28DLE is also clearly a very tough snow blower. Its auger and other key parts are made of durable steel, which will hold up to the rigors of severe winter weather easily. The wheels on the Ariens ST28DLE are big and tough, and the body of the snow blower is resistant to damage from dents or other accidents. Once you get the Ariens ST28DLE in your garage, you are not going to need to buy another snow blower for a long time – and in all likelihood, this will be the last one you ever get.

Pros

review prosThere is a lot to like in the Ariens ST28DLE. This is the kind of snow blower that is designed to do one thing extremely well, and every design note on it is geared to support superior snow clearing ability. The Ariens ST28DLE is big; it’s powerful; and it is built to last. In every area that is important, the Ariens ST28DLE really outshines its competition. Let’s take a look at some of the more impressive features.

  1. Powerful Briggs & Stratton Engine : On any snow blower, seeing that it has a powerful Briggs & Stratton engine is always going to be a very good sign. This is a company that is well known as one of the very best manufacturers of small engines for yard machines, and this is a reputation that is well deserved. With a Briggs & Stratton engine under the hood, the Ariens ST28DLE will be able to deliver solid power for many years.
  2. Wide clearance and high intake : When you are buying a two-stage snow blower, one of the most important features on it is going to be how big its auger is. And with a clearance width and snow cut depth that are both nearly two feet in size, the Ariens ST28DLE has one of the biggest. That means that you will have no trouble clearing large areas quickly, and no matter how serious snow accumulation gets, you’ll have no trouble with it.
  3. Durable parts : When you are getting a snow blower that has the capacity to take on tough jobs, you want it to be made of the kind of durable parts that are going to last over the long term. And every part on the Ariens ST28DLE is. From its pneumatic tires to its cast iron gear box, every component on the Ariens ST28DLE is designed to deliver tough performance and last for a very long time.
  4. Convenient design : You don’t just want your snow blower to be big and tough – it should also be convenient and easy to use. And the Ariens ST28DLE is. From its self-propelled drive system to its handy electric starter and easy to use control panel, the manufacturers thought of everything that you could need to make your job more convenient. And when snow is falling and temperatures are dropping fast, that is what you want in your snow blower.
  5. Six forward speeds : While plenty of snow blowers provide a rear wheel drive system, on average they have only four forward speeds. Some manufacturers may think that four is plenty. But on the Ariens ST28DLE you get six. I my opinion, the extra two speeds can make a lot of difference: conditions can be variable when you are clearing snow, and you want a lot of options so that you can always be prepared for any situation.

In every category that counts, the Ariens ST28DLE comes through in a big way. This is a snow blower that is built to provide outstanding performance even in the face of the worst possible conditions. When a serious winter storm hits and conditions are bad, this is the kind of snow blower that you want in your garage. That’s because it has everything you need to clear lots of snow fast. It’s durable and reliable, and will last a long time.

Cons

review consNow, with all of those excellent features, it may be a bit surprising to find that there are in fact a few areas in which the Ariens ST28DLE actually has room for improvement. I should say that I don’t think any of these drawbacks really can take away too much from the outstanding Pros the Ariens ST28DLE has to offer, but you should be aware of all aspects of a product before you make a decision to buy it.

  1. Fairly large and heavy : It’s no secret that the Ariens ST28DLE is a big, bulky snow blower. You may find that it takes up a bit more room in your garage than you might like, and when it is not turned on, moving it around takes a bit of effort. But that is due to the fact that the Ariens ST28DLE is supporting one of the widest clearances and has a big, powerful engine under the hood, so it isn’t really a Con.
  2. Chute is hard to operate : This is one area in which the Ariens ST28DLE actually could stand to see a bit of improvement. The chute rotates a full 200 degrees, which is very convenient. But it is manually operated, and has to be locked into place in order to keep it from swinging about when you are using it. The locking mechanism is a little hard to get used to, and it could have a stronger spring on it to make it work better.
  3. Not CARB compliant : The Ariens ST28DLE produces a fair amount of carbon emissions – so much so that it is not compliant with California Air Resources Board standards around small engine emissions. That means that users in that state will not have access to this snow blower, which is really a shame. Again, this isn’t really a true Con, since noncompliance with CARB emissions standards is fairly common among gas powered snow blowers and two stage models in particular.
  4. Very noisy : Again, this is an aspect of gas powered snow blowers that is rather hard to get around. They have powerful engines that produce a lot of noise, and it is something that we all get used to if we want the kind of power that these machines can provide. But if you are clearing your driveway early in the morning before you go to work, be aware that you might wake up your neighbors.
  5. Controls take some getting used to : On any two stage snow blower with multiple forward and reverse speeds, there are a lot of controls to navigate. Not only do you have to set the speed of the snow blower, you have to engage or disengage the auger, steer, and handle the snow chute all at the same time. But with some practice, you should be able to get used to using the controls after just a few tries, and have no trouble after.

As I’m sure you will agree, none of the items listed in the Cons section are the kind of design flaws or manufacturing problems that really take away from all of the great features outlined in the Pros section. Most are common issues with this type of snow blower, and the rest simply mean that you will have to use the Ariens ST28DLE a few times to get used to its operation. Overall it’s a great snow blower.

Product Comparison

review comparisonAs any savvy shopper knows, the best way to determine whether a particular product is the right one for you is to go a bit farther than considering its individual Pros and Cons and do some comparison shopping. That way, you can get a much better picture of how it stacks up to similar models made by its competitors. The following list looks at the product specs of the Ariens ST28DLE and two other snow blowers.

  Ariens ST28DLEAriens
ST28DLE
Murray 1696030Murray
1696030
Snapper 1696002Snapper
1696002
Type Two-Stage Two-Stage Two-Stage
Dimensions 37 x 50.9 x 32 inches 37 x 50.9 x 32 inches 35.8 x 50.5 x 50.5 inches
Start Button push Button push Button push
Engine Manufacturer Briggs & Stratton Briggs & Stratton Briggs & Stratton
Engine 420 cc – OHV 305 cc – OHV 250cc – OHV
2-cycle / 4-cycle 4-cycle 4-cycle 4-cycle
Drive Self-propelled Self-propelled Self-propelled
Speed Control 6 forward / 2 reverse 6 forward / 2 reverse 6 forward / 2 reverse
Clearing Width 28 inches 29 inches 27 inches
Snow Cut Depth 23.5 inches 21 inches 23 inches
Throw Distance Up to 40 feet Up to 35 feet Up to 40 feet
Handle Ergonomic Ergonomic Ergonomic
Light n/a n/a n/a
Chute Control Manual 200° Manual 180° Manual 200°
Wheels 16-Inch x 5-inch 16-Inch x 5-inch 16-Inch x 5-inch
Weight 268 pounds 294 pounds 254 pounds
Warranty 2 years 2 years 2 years

At first glance, the three snow blowers may seem to be pretty much the same. They all have comparable clearance widths. Their snow cut depths are within a few inches of one another. And they all have Briggs & Stratton engines. But notice the fact that the Ariens ST28DLE has an engine that is more than thirty percent bigger than the other two. That means it is more powerful, and will be better equipped to deal with wet, heavy, or very deep snow.

Conclusion

review conclusionInvesting in a snow blower like the Ariens ST28DLE is a pretty big purchase, and one that should not be taken lightly. With that in mind, I think it is a good idea to review the Pros and Cons lists one more time before we wrap up, just to make sure that this is in fact the best snow blower for you.

Conclusion Pros

  1. Powerful Briggs & Stratton Engine.
  2. Wide clearance and high intake.
  3. Durable parts.
  4. Convenient design.
  5. Six forward speeds.

In every category that matters, the Ariens ST28DLE really delivers. It has one of the best engines in the business, and the highest intake and widest clearance you can find on a walk-behind snow blower. It is built to last and easy to operate. This is one truly outstanding snow blower.

Conclusion Cons

  1. Fairly large and heavy.
  2. Chute is hard to operate.
  3. Not CARB compliant.
  4. Very noisy.
  5. Controls take some getting used to.

Best of all, the Ariens ST28DLE is not one of those snow blowers that looks great up front but turns out to have hidden problems. None of the Cons I found on this snow blower are problems that are not common to most two-stage snow blowers. In every area, the Ariens ST28DLE is a machine that really delivers quality.

Final Word

When winter gets tough and starts delivering large quantities of snow to your doorstep, you want to be sure that you have a snow blower in your garage that is ready for just about anything. And the Ariens ST28DLE is that kind of snow blower. It has the kind of high performance engine that only Briggs & Stratton makes, and with that kind of power under the hood there is very little it can’t do.

That’s because the Ariens ST28DLE has a clearance width that is about as wide as it gets on a walk-behind snow blower as well as one of the deepest intakes around. There isn’t a snow storm out there that the Ariens ST28DLE is not going to deal with easily. Its powerful steel auger can cut through tough, icy snow like butter, and it can throw even slushy snow up to 40 feet away. It’s made of the most durable parts you can find, and it is built to last for many years. This is really a solid snow blower that is going to deliver high performance for a long time.

Best Price

review pricesThere is no getting around the fact that the Ariens ST28DLE is not a cheap snow blower. In fact, its price tag is frankly above average for a two-stage snow blower, but with good reason. You are not going to find another snow blower out there that has the kind of powerful engine and extremely high clearance and intake that the Ariens ST28DLE has. Hands down, this is one of the best snow blowers you can find on today’s market, and because of that I think that its price tag is more than reasonable. This snow blower will last many years and deliver solid performance under the worst conditions. That alone makes it worth every penny.

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