What Are Blowers Used For?
Blowers come in all shapes and sizes, from handheld blowers to large ridealong or towing machines. They all have one job to do, however, and that is to blow loose stuff into a pile.
I’m sure you’ve seen groundsmen or city workers walking around with a handheld blower or a backpack, usually in autumn. This is because leaves fall in autumn.
Unless they’re cleared up, leaves can actually become fairly hazardous. They can become slippy for people and vehicles, collect in piles, become tripped hazards, and so on.
Blowers are just as important in a groundskeeper’s or superintendent’s arsenal of maintenance equipment.
An 18 hole golf course can easily span 180 acres. That means there is a lot of leaves and other debris across the course.
It would be near impossible to keep it looking immaculate without large blowers. At least not without an army of groundsmen, which is how golf courses removed all loose debris before blowers became more accessible.
Types of Blowers
There are various types of blowers, and some are more effective than others depending on what your task is.
The main consideration when deciding which blower is best for you mostly comes down to how large the space is you need to clear. The larger the area, the bigger the blower you’ll need.
With that in mind, here are the main types of blowers and what they’re used for:
Handheld Leaf Blowers
Handheld or cordless leaf blowers are the smallest models and easiest to use. They’re the most convenient option, you don’t even need to plug them into a mains supply. You can simply walk around blowing leaves into piles to pick up.
They are most commonly used by homeowners looking for a quick way to deal with autumn leaves collecting around their property. As well as city workers needing a mobile solution to clearing walkways.
The downside is that they’re not very powerful. Meaning you can’t use them to clear large greens like golf courses. Budget allowing, it’s handy to have a handheld blower in your equipment shed though for quick clean-ups.
Backpack Leaf Blowers
Backpack leaf blowers are a step up in power over handheld models. The backpack is home to the motor, which enables this type of blower to generate more power and last for longer.
It’s a much better option if you’re clearing up larger spaces. They are still only suitable for smallish areas you can walk by foot, however.
They are more commonly used to clear some of the shorter walkways on golf courses. They’re not ideal for clearing large areas dense with trees or the golf cart paths.
The most common are gas-powered models, although mixed fuel and electric models are also available.
Tow-Behind Leaf Blowers
Tow-behind blowers are the highest-powered leaf blowers. These are the blowers that can help clear a golf course of loose leaves in a day. In fact, many golf courses use them daily to clear their golf cart paths.
They are available in various shapes, sizes, and types of motors. Most are powered by turbines, and they are incredibly powerful.
Clearing miles of pathways can become a one-man operation. There’s an investment cost in buying a tow-behind blower, but it pays for itself in time spent as they’re so much faster than smaller blowers.
For most golf courses this is literally the only way they can cover their vast greens and long, winding paths. If you own a course, we recommend looking into buying a tow-behind blower to make clearing debris a breeze.
Tips When Using Blowers
Protection and Training
When using any kind of power tools, equipment, and machinery, anyone using it should be properly trained on how to use the equipment.
In addition to this, you should also provide the appropriate protective clothing and gear. For handheld and backpack blowers, this means protective clothing, eyewear, ear protectors, and a face mask.
For tow-behind blowers, you don’t need as much protective clothing as you’re riding ahead in a golf cart or some other light vehicle pulling the blower. We recommend checking the user manual to be sure though.
Timing and Weather
We can’t control the weather, so sometimes it’s going to be out of your control. However, the drier and less windy the weather is, the easier it’s going to be to blow all the leaves where you want them to go.
You will only have to try blowing leaves in poor weather conditions once to know what hopeless task it can be.
You need to have a plan in place as to where you’re going to create piles of leaves. If not, you could end up going round in circles chasing leaves.
Set spots where you and your team are to blow leaves into a pile. It helps to position a tarp there too. This gives the leaves something to stick to, and it makes it a lot easier to pick them up.
How Often Should You Use a Blower?
The answer to this depends on how many leaves and other bits of debris you have in need of blowing and collecting.
If you have trees on your land, there’s no doubt that you’ll end up using blowers to get them under control daily during the autumn.
Most golf courses blow their golf cart paths once a day to keep everything looking immaculate. With a tow-along blower, it’s really not much effort to take a drive around the course in the morning.