Snapper 1696003 Review

Snapper 1696003

11110
(Rated: 3.8 / 5) Review by Frank Lowery
Noise11110
Ease of Assembly11110.5
Maneuverability11100
Balance And Handling11110
Result Quality1110.50

If you live in a rural area and have a big property with a lot of unpaved roads to keep clear of snow in the winter, or if you simply live in a region that gets very heavy snow fall all winter long, you are going to want to have a two stage snow blower in your garage. These machines are equipped to deal with paved as well as unpaved surfaces. And they have some of the widest clearances and highest intakes you can find on any snow blower anywhere, which means they can clear large amounts of snow quickly and efficiently. But you don’t want just any two stage snow blower in your garage. You want the best: one that not only has a wide clearance and high snow cut depth, but also a quality engine and durable parts that will last for many years. You want a Snapper 1696003.

Review Summary

review summaryThe Snapper 1696003 is, put simply, one of the biggest and best two stage snow blowers on the market today. This is a snow blower that boasts a huge, powerful engine made by one of the best companies in the business. That engine drives a welded steel auger that is over two feet wide – enough to clear a walkway in a single pass or a driveway in less than a half dozen passes. The Snapper 1696003 has a snow cut depth that is just about as high as it gets, so even if a severe winter storm comes your way, you will have no trouble carving out a path.

The Snapper 1696003 has tons of outstanding accessories, such as a 120 volt electric starter with a recoil backup system and a free hand control system. You can steer with one hand, allowing you to use the other one to adjust the speed or rotate the chute, which turns a full 200 degrees. The chute can be controlled remotely to throw snow higher or lower as well. The manufacturers didn’t miss anything when they were designing the Snapper 1696003. This is really one of the best snow blowers out there today.

Specifications

review specificationsThe Snapper 1696003 is a gas powered two stage snow blower. It weighs 265 pounds and has overall dimensions of 35.8 x 50.5 x 50.5 inches. It has a push button electric start and a Briggs & Stratton OHV engine with a displacement of 305 cubic centimeters – one of the most powerful on any snow blower.

Type Two-Stage
Dimensions 35.8 x 50.5 x 50.5 inches
Start Button push
Engine Manufacturer Briggs & Stratton
Engine 305 cc – OHV
2-cycle / 4-cycle 4-cycle
Drive Self-propelled
Speed Control 6 forward / 2 reverse
Clearing Width 29 inches
Snow Cut Depth 23 inches
Throw Distance Up to 40 feet
Handle Ergonomic
Light n/a
Chute Control Manual 200°
Wheels 16-Inch x 5-inch
Weight 265 pounds
Warranty 2 years

The powerful engine drives an auger that is 29 inches wide, and it has a snow cut depth of nearly two feet. This allows it to clear high volumes of snow quickly and throw them up to 40 feet away through its snow chute, which rotates 200 degrees. It has big wheels and is made of durable parts. It has a two year warranty.

Description

review descriptionWhen you take a look at the Snapper 1696003, you are going to be thinking one thing: that this is one big, powerful looking snow blower. And it is. This is one of the biggest two stage snow blowers on the market today, and it has one of the most powerful small engines you can find on any yard machine anywhere. The Snapper 1696003 has a Briggs & Stratton engine, and that is a brand that is synonymous with high performance and great quality. The engine has a displacement that is thirty percent bigger than the average two stage snow blower’s engine, which means it can deliver a lot more power to the auger.

That allows the auger on the Snapper 1696003 to be 29 inches wide. This is a very wide path to be cutting through snow drifts, and it means that you will be able to finish big jobs more quickly than ever before with the Snapper 1696003. And because it has such a high snow cut depth, there is no snow storm that is too severe for the Snapper 1696003 to handle. If you do ever encounter snow that is deeper than two feet, simply attach drift cutters and you will be able to clear it as well.

There are lots of great accessories on the Snapper 1696003 to make operating it as easy as possible, and because it is ergonomically designed you never have to worry about having a sore back after you are done using it. This is a snow blower that is made with convenience in mind, and it will help you keep your property free of snow all winter long. No more struggling with sub-par snow blowers that can’t get the job done. With the Snapper 1696003, you can deal with just about anything.

Pros

review prosThere is a lot to like on the Snapper 1696003. This is a big, powerful snow blower with some truly outstanding features. It has one of the best engines you can find on the market today, and because of that it can support a massive clearance width and huge snow cut depth. And it’s made of very durable parts that will last over the long term. It has great accessories and is built for tough jobs.

  1. Extra wide clearance : The clearance width should always be one of the first things you look at when you are deciding whether to buy a new snow blower – and that is doubly true when you are looking for a two stage snow blower. Wider clearances are one of the best reasons to buy this kind of snow blower, so there is no reason to get a small one. And with a 29 inch clearing width, the Snapper 1696003 is one of the best.
  2. Briggs & Stratton engine : Especially when you are looking for a two stage snow blower, the engine make and size are going to be extremely important as well. This will determine how much power the snow blower has to drive through deep, densely packed snow. With a Briggs & Stratton engine that has a displacement of over three hundred cubic centimeters, and overhead valve design, and superior torque, the Snapper 1696003 has everything you need under the hood.
  3. Great capacity : The capacity of a snow blower to clear large amounts of snow is also a function of its snow cut depth, and the Snapper 1696003 has a huge one. It can plow through almost two feet of hard packed snow as easily as cutting through butter, and its impeller can throw that snow up to forty feet away through the snow chute, which rotates a full 200 degrees. That means you can clear lots of snow fast.
  4. Durable parts : When you are buying a top of the line two stage snow blower, you want to be sure that it is going to last for the long term without breaking down or needing repairs too often. And with the Snapper 1696003, this will almost never be the case. It has a durable welded steel auger, stamped steel body, and tough parts everywhere else, from the big wheels to the quality engine. This is a machine that is built to last.
  5. Six forward speeds : It is typical to find a two stage snow blower that has a rear wheel drive, but usually these only provide four forward speeds, which can be problematic at times. With six forward speeds, the Snapper 1696003 can be adjusted to whatever pace is best for your needs and the conditions on the ground. That means you will have no trouble setting the speed that is best for the job at hand as well as your own comfort.

And these five features do not even cover all of the great features the Snapper 1696003 has. There are countless other great design notes on the Snapper 1696003 as well, from the power steering to the Snapper 1696003 inch Arctic Trace tires and the electric starter for use on cold mornings when a recoil cord won’t do. The Snapper 1696003 is really one of the best two stage snow blowers you can find anywhere on the market today.

Cons

review consWith all of those wonderful features, you might be a bit taken aback to find that there are a few areas in which the Snapper 1696003 is not quite perfect. At the same time, all of the problems I could find with this snow blower are fairly common for big, two stage models, and I don’t think any of them are able to take away from the great Pros the Snapper 1696003 has to offer.

  1. Very large footprint : When you are dealing with a powerful two stage snow blower that has one of the widest clearances out there, a big engine and high snow cut depth, it’s going to have a large footprint. That is something that you just can’t get around. But it does mean that it will not be easy to find a big enough parking spot for it in your garage or tool shed, and you should be ready for this.
  2. Not CARB compliant : Again, with a big, powerful two stage snow blower – especially one that has a Briggs & Stratton engine with a 300-plus cubic centimeter displacement, it is going to be producing a lot of emissions. Unfortunately for users in any of the fourteen states (including California) that enforce CARB emissions standards, you will not be able to purchase or have this model shipped to you. That’s a real shame, because this is such a great snow blower.
  3. The engine is noisy : The engine on the Snapper 1696003 is an overhead valve design. These are made to produce more power in a smaller overall space – but because of that, they are also quite noisy. While they’re not a lot noisier than the average lawn mower, if you are clearing snow on early winter mornings before you get the car out of the garage to go to work, you may run the risk of waking up your neighbors.
  4. Leaves a thin layer behind : Two stage snow blowers are designed to be used on paved or unpaved surfaces just as well. Unlike single-stage snow blowers, the auger on two stage models does not make contact with the ground, which is great when you are clearing a gravel drive. But if you are clearing a paved surface, it means it will leave a thin layer of snow behind. This is easily solved, though, by putting down a layer of rock salt.
  5. It’s not cheap : The Snapper 1696003 is not an inexpensive snow blower – in fact, it is one of the more expensive ones on the market today. But if you are serious about clearing heavy snow fall from big areas quickly, you are not going to be able to do it with a budget machine. You want a machine that has everything it takes to get the job done. And the Snapper 1696003 is just that kind of snow blower.

I think you will agree with me when I say that none of these Cons is the kind of serious problem that can take away anything from what the Snapper 1696003 has to offer its owner. It remains one of the biggest and most powerful snow blowers on the market today, and anyone who buys one will enjoy lots of real snow clearing capacity for many years to come. This really is one great snow blower.

Product Comparison

review comparisonOf course, as any savvy shopper knows, the best way to find out whether a particular snow blower is the right one for you is to do some comparison shopping. Once you have narrowed it down to a particular class and size, I always recommend comparing one model to at least a couple of other similar ones. That way you get a good idea of how that one stacks up as compared to the competition.

  Snapper 1696003Snapper
1696003
Power Smart DB7651-26Power Smart
DB7651-26
Ariens ST28DLEAriens
ST28DLE
Type Two-Stage Two-Stage Two-Stage
Dimensions 35.8 x 50.5 x 50.5 inches 38 x 27 x 30 inches 37 x 50.9 x 32 inches
Start Button push Button push Button push
Engine Manufacturer Briggs & Stratton Power Smart Briggs & Stratton
Engine 305 cc – OHV 208 cc – OHV 420 cc – OHV
2-cycle / 4-cycle 4-cycle 4-cycle 4-cycle
Drive Self-propelled Self-propelled Self-propelled
Speed Control 6 forward / 2 reverse 4 forward / 2 reverse 6 forward / 2 reverse
Clearing Width 29 inches 26 inches 28 inches
Snow Cut Depth 23 inches 21 inches 23.5 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 13-Inch x 4-inch 16-Inch x 5-inch
Weight 265 pounds 185 pounds 268 pounds
Warranty 2 years 1 year 2 years

As you can see, the Snapper 1696003 has one of the biggest Briggs & Stratton engines, although larger displacements are available. But it also supports the widest clearance and one of the highest snow cut depths of the three models. Overall, the Snapper 1696003 is definitely one of the best models in its size and class. It has plenty of accessories above and beyond what the other two offer, and it will probably outlast them as well.

Conclusion

review conclusionBuying a new two stage snow blower is no small purchase, and you should be absolutely certain that the Snapper 1696003 is the best one for you before you decide to buy it. With that in mind, I think we should probably take one more look at the Pros and Cons lists, just to be as thorough as possible.

Conclusion Pros

  1. Extra wide clearance.
  2. Briggs & Stratton engine.
  3. Great capacity.
  4. Durable parts.
  5. Six forward speeds.

With one of the widest clearances that can be found on any snow blower, a high quality engine and great snow clearing capacity, the Snapper 1696003 is definitely one of the very best two stage snow blowers on the market today. It has everything you need to keep your property clear all winter long.

Conclusion Cons

  1. Very large footprint.
  2. Not CARB compliant.
  3. The engine is noisy.
  4. Leaves a thin layer behind.
  5. It’s not cheap.

And none of the Cons associated with the Snapper 1696003 present any issues that you won’t find on every powerful two stage snow blower, either. There wasn’t a single real issue that I could find with the Snapper 1696003, and overall I think it’s worth every penny.

Final Word

When you have a serious amount of snow to clear from your driveway and sidewalks, or if you have a big, unpaved drive to keep clear of snow during the winter, you want a powerful two stage snow blower that can perform well under adverse conditions. And the Snapper 1696003 is just that kind of snow blower. It has everything you need to deal with severe winter storms and heavy snow fall as easily as you could with a light dusting of powdery snow.

The Snapper 1696003 is one of the best, most durable and most powerful snow blowers you can find on the market today. It has an extra wide clearance so you can finish the job in fewer passes and get back indoors where it’s warm sooner. Its snow cut depth is about as high as it gets, and it has one of the best engines on the market backing up its auger and rear wheel drive. This is an outstanding snow blower.

Best Price

review pricesThere is no way around the fact that the Snapper 1696003 is not a cheap snow blower. But I think it is important to keep in mind the fact that quality costs money. You do not want to save a bunch of money on the front end just to find out that you will be losing more of it over time as your cheaper snow blower can’t perform under adverse conditions. While the Snapper 1696003 may present a bit of sticker shock to buyers on a budget, you have to remember that you get what you pay for. And with the Snapper 1696003 you are getting one of the best snow blowers on the market today.

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